You'd think after all these years of living in Chicago that I'd be used to the crappy weather we get around here, but I'm not. Heading into the last week of March, the temps around our neck of the woods can be about as unpredictable as the upcoming Chicago baseball season. We'll, maybe that's a little bit more predictable than we'd like. Our South Elgin Pirates little league team is in full spring training mode already, except we haven't been able to practice outside yet. The fields are still not open for practice, and with good reason. With highs around 35 degrees and lows well into the 20's we just don't have the temperatures needed to let the grass take hold. This week promises for more of the same. Windy, wet and cold. Welcome to spring in Chicago.
I have managed to get out here and there, trying to catch a few fish with limited results. There just isn't any consistency at this time of the year when water temps are still so cold, and there is so much wind. Some fisherman have managed a few fish, but it is not without spending a great deal of effort. Finding active fish and then getting them to bite is like teaching Alfonso Soriano how to catch a fly ball, it requires more time and patience than I'm willing to give. I'm still a Cub fan, and a Bud man, but my brothers look more comfortable catching fly balls than he does, and they only play 18 softball games a year.
Getting geared up to fish this inclement weather requires you to be dressed as though you are going ice fishing. The difference is that there is no warm ice shanty to head into when you get cold. While wading the Fox river last week, with winds blowing over 20 miles an hour, I managed to withstand the icy water for about 2 hours before the sight of my truck sitting at the rivers edge was too much for me to take. I was wearing insulated waders and two sets of thermal underwear and I was very glad to get into that truck and turn that heat on.
It would be nice if things started to warm up, get these water temps where we need them, and let these fish start moving a bit. After all, the baseball season starts next week! In the meantime, get out when you can, pick the warmest part of the day, dress warm, and dream of the better fishing days to come!
Thanks as always for taking a few minutes to fish with us at Cappy's Pond and The Fishing-Headquarters! Hope to see you out multi-species fishing your favorite waters, and don't forget to share your experiences on our forum page, or drop us an e-mail at the FHQ!