Jack Frost returns

Published 8:46 pm Monday, March 20, 2023

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Spirit of Moonpie and I spent March the 15th through the 17th on the Blackwater above Joyner’s Bridge. The water was 47 degrees, 4.26 on the USGS river gauge at Burdette and crystal clear. Air temps ranged from 25 to 65 degrees. Ol’ Jack Frost was brutal when he returned that first day and night… whew!

The trash on this patrol was pretty bad — most of it, of course, downriver from the bridge and boat landing. I picked up a lot more of that blue-green house insulation Styrofoam that someone dumped off of the bridge. I hope whoever done that got a rash from handling it! I also removed a lot of fishing line out of the trees at the boat landing and picked up a couple nice lures doing that. I saw no water quality issues this patrol.

The fishing on this trip was not all that great. I was hoping to catch some shad like I did last year on this part of the river. However, this year I did not even get a hit. You just never know with the shad. Every year it’s different as to the time they start and the time they end and where that will be. I tried jigging for bowfin and stripers, but no luck there either. I did cast some and caught three chain pickerel, so I was not totally skunked. 

So, all in all it was a pretty uneventful patrol. I didn’t even see much wildlife other than a few ducks and one mating pair of geese. I had a beaver cruise me a couple times at the base camp at night and slap its tail. But other than that, it was pretty dead out there. I guess that cold snap made all the critters stay in. Maybe I should have done the same… nahhh, I love it out there too much to stay off the two rivers we call the Blackwater and Nottoway.

Jeff Turner is the Blackwater Nottoway RiverGuard. To contact him about river issues, send him an email at blknotkpr@earthlink.net. He can also be followed on the Blackwater Nottoway RiverGuard Facebook page. Just type in “Blackwater Nottoway RiverGuard” in the search field on Facebook.