How to Be the Hero at the Boat Ramp

How to Be the Hero at the Boat Ramp

I am 30 years old and have been boating my entire life on the Mississippi River.  At a very young age, it was not unusual for us kids to be on the river alone, hunting ducks, geese, and deer.  As I entered adulthood, my boating experiences expanded far beyond my little town in Iowa.  As time passes by, I look back at my boating adventures in places like Australia, Dominican Republic, and Texas and have noticed a common denominator at the boat ramp – A lot of boaters cannot find their boat’s drain plug.  The frustrated boater starts tearing apart their boat and truck, hoping to find that little piece of heaven to get them on the water.  As the boater becomes more agitated, so does the line backing up behind him on the boat ramp.

Rushing to go fishing or hunting, I have been “that guy” who cannot find that little drain plug.  But now, I am the hero at the boat ramp simply by throwing a few extra drain plugs in my truck’s glove box!  If I cannot find my own drain plug or I notice a fellow boater who has lost his, I simply walk up to my truck and grab one out of the glove box. Every time I have given a drain plug to a boater, he or she has handed me money without me even asking for it.

Looking to buy a few extra drain plugs at the right price?  Click the links below.

Other Boat Drain Plug Quick Tips
  1. When putting your boat in reverse for the first time at the boat ramp, look back at your drain plug to ensure it stayed in the drain hole.  The back pressure from going in reverse can push your drain plug out of the drain hole and into the boat, causing your boat to quickly fill with water. 
  2. Thought you put the drain plug in at home only to see water gushing in after you launch your boat?  Always keep extra drain plugs in your boat that are easily accessible. 
  3. Always drain your boat at the site you launched your boat to stop the spread of invasive species!  While your draining your boat, ensure you drain all live wells and remove all vegetation from the prop.    
  4. Inspect your drain plugs to ensure they are functioning properly, especially snap-handle and t-handle drain plugs.  Inspect all components for cracks or dry rot.  If you find any issues with your drain plugs, replace immediately and dispose of in the garbage.

Want to learn more about boat ramp safety?  Read my other article, 2 Tips to Save Your Life at the Boat Ramp

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Justin J. Lind

January, 2020
White Buffalo Outdoors

This page contains affiliate links.  If you purchase a product through one of them, I will receive a commission (at no additional cost to you).  I only ever endorse products that I have personally used and benefited from personally.  Thank you for your support!

Married to a Fisherman? 10 Reasons Why You Are the Luckiest Person in the World

Married to a Fisherman? 10 Reasons Why You Are the Luckiest Person in the World

Now, I know you probably rolled your eyes a little right before you clicked on this article.  Your actions are completely understandable!  You deal with a lot, especially being married to a fisherman.  Your fisherman is always talking about fishing, organizing tackle boxes, cleaning fish fillets in the kitchen, and polishing the boat when the deck needs stained.  Being married to a fisherman might come with a little baggage, but after reading this article I think you will find those bags full of positives – making you the luckiest person in the world.

10. You Wake Up to Peace During the Weekend

It is still dark out on a Saturday morning and your fisherman is preparing to hit the water.  The love for fishing is so strong, your fisherman prepared and organized the day prior, allowing for a quiet retreat from the house.  While your fisherman is vertically jigging for crappies as the sun rises, you are at home peacefully sleeping with no snoring and all the blankets.   

9. Your Garage Is Organized

I have watched many episodes of Hoarders and I noticed a pattern – none of the hoarders are fishermen.  Why?  Because fishermen need space to organize and prepare and they need a clean space to do so.  Also, that boat takes up a good amount of space in the garage.  The space that is left around the boat must be ready for all garage projects you throw at your fisherman.

8. Your Convenient Meteorologist

It is the dead of winter and you wonder if you can drive to work in the morning.  You check the news and 3 different websites, all giving you different information!  If you want to know if the snow is going to fly, call your fisherman who is likely sitting on a 5-gallon bucket and a huge sheet of ice.  Ice fishing in open spaces, your fisherman will be able to feel the barometric pressure change, the sign of a storm approaching.  Your fisherman is so full of knowledge you will even know ice thickness of your local waterways and the temperature of the water!

7. Can Back It Up

Oh, great!  The in-laws are moving again.  All you can think about is the amount of time this operation is going to take.  Well, your fisherman is about to shave a lot of time off with the best trailer skills this side of the Mississippi.  Your fisherman will back up to the in-law’s house like a boss, motivating everyone to work hard and pack fast.   

6. Patience

The water has taught fishermen that good things come to those who wait.  Time after time, your fisherman preps for hours just to catch a few simple catfish.  Sitting on the upstream side of a log jam, your fisherman is not stressing about mowing grass, cleaning gutters, or work.  Your fisherman is laser focused on his fishing rods, praying for dinner.  If no dinner is caught, the tactics are reevaluated and adjustments are made to find success.

These qualities learned from fishing transition to life outside the boat.  Patience is a self-taught art requiring discipline and self-control.  In our fast pace world, it easy to get frustrated driving in traffic or waiting in line at Wal-Mart.  This built up frustration from these minute tasks will flow over to other interactions throughout the day, negatively impacting relationships with the people around you.  Controlling the day through patience leads to better outcomes and better relationships with the people around you.  Being persistent with patience will overtime drive your life in a positive direction and allow you to achieve your long-term goals.         

5. Chef Skills

If your fisherman did not know how to cook good fish before the marriage, I guarantee your fisherman has it figured it now!  Your fisherman needs to impress you in the kitchen, so you keep asking for more.  The more you like the cooking, the more your fisherman gets to fish! 

Does your fisherman hunt too?  Check out The Best Crock Pot Venison Recipe on the internet!

4. Strong Hands

Got a knot in your back?  No need to call that expensive chiropractor when you are married to a fisherman because your fisherman has the strongest hands on the block.  With years of tying rope and reeling in fish, your fisherman has built up strength that many cannot envision.   

3. That Model Tan

Now, I get it.  Your fisherman might not have those wash board abs you see in the magazines.  However, your fisherman sports a tan that magazine models only dream about.  Between the strong hands and that model tan, there is no doubt heads will turn as you walk into Bass Pro Shops with your arm candy.

Concerned about your fisherman getting too much sun?  Try these products.

2. Easy to Buy For

Walking into that huge store is a little intimidating.  However, follow behind slowly and just watch.  As your fisherman picks up items and says, “Maybe next time”, snap a photo of the item and save to your phone. 

If you still feel like you struggle with buying fishermen gifts, here is a great list of simple items all fishermen could use!

1. Adventure Awaits You!

The world is at your fingertips when you are married to a fisherman!  If you would like to see more of the natural world, you married the right person.  Fishermen are natural teachers and love getting anybody they can into fishing, especially their own family.  Your children will learn skills and opportunities that many children in this world do not have access too.  If you are not into fishing, still take advantage of the opportunities that await you.  Get out on the boat with your fisherman and simply read a book and watch the natural wildlife around you.  Spending quality time with your partner in the outdoors will create memories both of you will smile about in your later years.  Make memories, have fun, and catch the largest fish in the boat (If you catch the larger fish never let your partner forget).

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Justin J. Lind

January, 2020
White Buffalo Outdoors

This page contains affiliate links.  If you purchase a product through one of them, I will receive a commission (at no additional cost to you).  I only ever endorse products that I have personally used and benefited from personally.  Thank you for your support!

Purchase Fishing Mug
Purchase Fishing Shirt
Purchase Fishing Mug
How to Drift Fish for Channel Catfish

Drift Fishing for Catfish: 2 Critical Tips You Must Know

Growing up, I loved fishing for channel catfish in my little flat boat.  I would pull up to my favorite catfish hole, drop the anchor and sling out my favorite stink bait.  As I grew older, I wanted a new challenge and started watching Youtube videos on how to catch flathead.  I was instantly hooked on flathead fishing and slowly faded out fishing for channel catfish.  Now at the age of 30, I am back fishing for channel catfish in a way I have never done before – drift fishing.  A few of my co-workers wanted to try this technique and asked if I wanted to tag along.  After doing some quick research online, we hopped in the boat, flipped down the trolling motor and starting drift fishing for catfish.

We caught nothing!

We went again a few days later and caught 1 fish.  After making a few adjustments, we went to the same area and caught 6 fish.  After making several mistakes and learning on the fly, we are now catching a good amount of channel catfish every time we hit the water. 

Here are the 2 most important changes we made to finally find success when drift fishing for catfish.

1. Use Fresh Bait

Fresh bait is critical.  The first time we went out we did not bring a cast net to catch shad.  So, we stopped at the local gas station and bought frozen shad.  When the shad unthawed, it was very soft and did not stay on the hook long.

Now, we buy fresh shrimp from the local fish market and bring the cast net along in the boat to catch shad.  If we run out of shrimp, we catch fresh shad!  We have found that fresh shad and shrimp are the best baits to use in our area.

Quick Tip

Always bring several baits when fishing a new river or lake for channel catfish and see which bait works the best.  I fish two different rivers within 50 miles of my house.  One river I catch a lot of channel catfish on shrimp.  The other river, I cannot get a bite with shrimp, which forces me to use shad.

2. Know Your Speed and Depth

You will not catch channel catfish in the same depth every day and you will not catch them at the same speed.  When you get out to the area you plan to drift across, try different speeds (usually between .5 – 1.5) and try different depths.  Once you catch a fish, document the speed and depth on a piece of paper or on your phone.  When you catch another catfish, document like you did before.  If you continue to document, you will soon find that “sweet spot” when it comes to depth and speed and will likely catch more channel catfish as the day progresses.  

At first, drift fishing for catfish was frustrating.  I knew how to catch channel catfish the way I did when I was younger, and I had a hard time fighting the urge to go back to the way I did it before.  However, seeing that first fishing rod bend over and the intensity of it while drifting, I was hooked for life. 

If you are struggling catching channel catfish or any other fish, do not give up!  Keep trying and changing your approach.  Eventually, you will find your way to success. 

Do you chase flathead catfish too?  Check out my article – How to Flathead Fish: The Basics

Interested in running bank poles?  Check out my other article – 7 Tips on How to Fish with Bank Poles

My Favorite Reel for Drift Fishing

Abu Garcia C3-6500 Fishing Reel

The Abu Garcia C3-6500 I use for flathead fishing and now for drift fishing.  I have had this reel for many years and have not had one problem with it.  I typically use 15 pound mono-filament line.  

Don’t forget to check out these White Buffalo Outdoors Fishing Shirts!

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Justin J. Lind

September 2019
White Buffalo Outdoors

This page contains affiliate links.  If you purchase a product through one of them, I will receive a commission (at no additional cost to you).  I only ever endorse products that I have personally used and benefited from personally.  Thank you for your support!

Waterproof hunting and fishing licenses

How to Waterproof Hunting and Fishing Licenses

How to waterproof your hunting and fishing licenses in the most extreme conditions?  Waterproofing my hunting and fishing licenses has been a struggle over the years.  I travel a lot hunting and fishing and in many states it is required that I carry paper licenses in my pocket.  What do I do?  Fold up the licenses as tight as I can and squeeze them in my wallet, hoping they fit (they never do).  If it starts raining and my wallet gets wet, so do my licenses.  So, I asked myself, “How do I keep my hunting and fishing licenses waterproof and carry them comfortably?”  

The smokers in my life had the answer.

Waterproof cigarette cases kept smokers satisfied in the wettest conditions for years!  Whether tubing down a river or at a rainy concert, smokers found a way to keep smoking.

Waterproof cigarette cases cost $7.25 on Amazon.  The cases come with a comfortable neck lanyard for comfortable wear between any layer of clothing.  With many outdoorsmen having several licenses and tags, plenty of room is available to fit it all!

Interested in purchasing a waterproof cigarette case?  Try this one from Amazon – WITZ Keep it Safe Waterproof Sports Case. 

Here is another quick tip I wrote about hunting and fishing licenses – Can I Laminate My Fishing License?

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Justin J. Lind

September 2019
White Buffalo Outdoors

can i laminate my fishing license

Can I Laminate My Fishing License?

What makes all fishermen alike? We want to waterproof everything including our fishing licenses! But, can I laminate my fishing license?

I cannot.

Unfortunately, Iowans cannot use a lamination machine to waterproof their fishing AND hunting licenses.  Our licenses are made with thermal paper.

Thermal paper uses heat to create text and images, not ink. If you put the licenses through a lamination machine, your ticket to the outdoors (your license) will turn black instantly.

Can I laminate my fishing license another way?

Yes!

I now use clear box tape for my licenses and it has worked great.  I simply put a piece on each side of license and cut the excess off.

Another great way to laminate your fishing license it to use contact paper.  Apply the contact paper the same way as the box tape. 

Want to learn more about waterproofing your fishing and hunting licenses?  Check out this quick tip – How to Waterproof Hunting and Fishing Licenses

I hope you have a great and successful fishing season!  Please send in your favorite fishing pictures to White Buffalo Outdoors!  I would be happy to share on the White Buffalo Outdoors Facebook Page, Instagram, Snapchat, Pinterest, and Twitter.  I will also post the picture in the Trophy Room on this website.

To send in your fishing photo CLICK HERE

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Justin J. Lind

September 2019
White Buffalo Outdoors

How to Launch Your Boat at the Boat Ramp

Boat Ramp Safety: 2 Life Saving Tips

Only when you are launching your boat!

These 2 simple steps that take 5 seconds can save your life if your vehicle becomes submerged in water. When a vehicle becomes submerged, electronics stop working including windows. By having the windows down and the seatbelt off, you have set yourself up for a quick and easy escape.

It only takes seconds for a vehicle to sink in water and less time for you to prepare for it.

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Justin J. Lind

September 2019
White Buffalo Outdoors

Releasing flathead catfish

How to Light Fishing Poles for Night Fishing

Do you go night fishing and surround yourself with lights just to see the tip of your fishing rod? If you do, you have witnessed first-hand armies of bugs marching out of the woods ready to bombard your face, food, and drinks!  Learn how light fishing poles for night fishing for just a few dollars below!

Get rid of the bugs, cords, and your assortment of expensive lights by using $1.00 glow sticks. Simply shake the 8″ glow sticks until they light up and tape them tightly against the tip of your fishing rod with scotch tape. Now, sit back, turn the lights off, and enjoy your bug free night!

Purchase Glow Sticks on Amazon Here.

Don’t forget to check out our article on How to Flathead Fish: The Basics to get you out there catching more flathead catfish and large channel catfish.

Enjoyed my Fishing Quick Tip on how to light fishing poles for night fishing?  You might like this Quick Tip How to Be the Hero at the Boat Ramp.  

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Justin J. Lind

August 2019
White Buffalo Outdoors

This page contains affiliate links.  If you purchase a product through one of them, I will receive a commission (at no additional cost to you).  I only ever endorse products that I have personally used and benefited from personally.  Thank you for your support!

White Buffalo Outdoors Articles

How to Hook Live Bluegill Bait for Flathead Catfish

Fishing for flathead catfish is a great way to catch the largest fish in your local river!  However, the process of catching bait, preparing gear, and finding a good fishing spot is a time-consuming process.  With so much time invested, it is important to hook your bluegill bait correctly, so you hook and land more fish!

Below is a picture showing 3 different options to hook your bluegill bait which is indicated in red.  The green line indicates the lateral line of the fish.  The lateral line allows your bluegill to detect movement, vibration, and pressure gradients in the water.  Hitting the lateral line with your hook will likely shock your bluegill bait and not allow it swim, reducing your chances of hooking a flathead catfish. 

White Buffalo Outdoors Articles

When fishing with live bluegill bait, it is important to note that flathead catfish will first try to stun your bait, so it is easier for them to catch and swallow.  Flathead catfish will stun live bluegill bait by striking it with their large tail.  After the bluegill bait is stunned, the flathead catfish will likely swallow the bluegill headfirst. 

Good luck on your next flathead fishing adventure and feel free to send White Buffalo Outdoors pictures of your trophy fish!

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Justin J. Lind

July 2019
White Buffalo Outdoors

Click or tap the images below to purchase one of these great flathead catfish fishing shirts!
Flathead Catfish Fishing Shirt
Flathead Catfish Fishing Shirt
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