Life on the Big Lake

A day on the pier, St. Joseph Michigan

Salty fishing dogs, health nuts out for a jog and tourist from all walks…that’s what you’ll find on this lovely pier that sits across from one of the most photographed lighthouses on the big lake.

How fortunate we are to live so near! An avid fisherman, my husband suggested we spend our Sunday afternoon along “the blue rail.” As soon as I said “Sure” he replied, “I’ll rig some extra rods!”  You see with me along he could have more lines in the water. Plus, if we happened to hit, I could do the reeling while he did the more serious job of netting.

Usually it’s hard to get a good spot on the pier mid-day, but the wind had kept many away as most know that churned up water is too muddy for the fish to see their offerings.  For us though, any day outside is a good day.

When we arrived there was a father teaching his young boys to cast spoons.  They had grown tired though and were rolling around asking for hamburgers.  As soon as they left we were able to secure what Pier Jesus surmised to be the best spots for the day and within thirty minutes we had a coho salmon and two whitefish.

Just as the fishing began to slow another local appeared. As my better half left to offer “Boo” a swig of Fireball whiskey and chat about the action, I kept my one good eye on the tall rod tips just in case.

As I paced looking toward the sky I thought nothing of the way I was dressed.  (When you are going to be standing out in the big lake for a few hours and it’s March you wear your winter gear no matter what!)

A tourist passing back by from having gone all the way to the end said, “I wondered why you were dressed like that, but now I know! That wind is cold coming of the lake!”

“And I’m going to be standing here for hours!” I replied.

Many from out of town were curious about the blood stains on the cement around us.

“Did you catch anything?”  They’d invariably ask.

For their entertainment I’d pull our small stringer up out of the water.  Then I’d turn the tables. I’d ask where they were from and why it was they chose to come to our small town in early March. One man from Ann Arbor had driven across the state just to take a few pictures.  He said it was his favorite spot in the whole state.

Pretty soon another friend of my husband’s pulled up with his pier cart and then there were three along the rail.  A drywaller, Boo and us.

#lakemichiganculture #puremichigan



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