It’s a Small World

I had an interesting grocery shopping experience two days ago when I went to pick up some groceries at a Meijer’s in Traverse City. A super blustery day, where it was a pleasure to not have a guide trip on a much-enjoyed day off, I ventured out to pick up some groceries for upcoming guide trips as well as forage for ingredients for dinner.

As I was looking for a parking spot, in the always-busy Meijer’s, the friendly face of a long-time local customer of mine called out “Hello Captain!” This was a customer, Chuck, who has fished with me on two of my guide services. I have enjoyed fishing with he and his grandson, Logan, on my Traverse City Bass Guide Service, targeting smallmouth bass, and have also enjoyed fishing with he and his wife, Janis, with my Manistee River Salmon Guide Service down in Manistee, Michigan targeting king salmon.

Chuck and I chatted briefly, catching up on the fishing and life in general. It was fun running into such a nice customer, and glad to hear that things continue to go well for him in his retirement.

While getting a hot cider, a woman recognized me from my television segments on WWTV’s Michigan This Morning show where they highlighted my 3 guide services and my Deep Blue Coffee Company. She asked how the fishing business was, and we spoke about a friend of hers who is a fishing guide in New Zealand. She was happy that I had been highlighted, saying that she thought that I had done a great job. Much appreciated praise, thank you!

Overhearing our conversation was a gentleman who asked about my coffee company. It turns out that this guy’s family owns a coffee farm in Hawaii, and owns a coffee shop/roastery in Homer, Alaska. We spoke a bit about the coffee business, and as many of my conversations do, we also spoke about fishing. What a small world, because not only does his family own a coffee farm and shop, he is here in the Traverse City area to attend the Maritime Academy. His love is on the water, and Traverse City seemed to be a great fit for him.

Spending so much time on the water isolates me a bit, but it’s days like I had a couple of days ago that remind me how small a world it actually is, and how we are all connected. Running into Chuck prompted me to put up a photo of a trip with his grandson Logan and one from a trip he had with Janis, fishing for salmon.

Thank you everybody, for making my passion my job, and for making my job such a pleasure.

Chuck’s grandson Logan with a dandy smallmouth he caught while fishing with me at Traverse City Bass Guide Service.

Chuck and Janis with a king salmon caught while fishing with Manistee River Salmon Guide Service.

Michigan This Morning

What an incredibly busy month we have had this past month. Fishing every day, and flip flopping between my two guide services, Manistee River Salmon Guide Service fishing for king salmon on the Big Manistee River and my Traverse City Bass Guide Service guiding on Grand Traverse Bay in Traverse City. We have attracted some media attention, which is always welcome.

We filmed 6 small 2-minute segments with “Michigan This Morning”, a local morning show. During the filming, we highlighted both my coffee company, Deep Blue Coffee Company, and my 3 guide services. Despite beautiful weather conditions on the Manistee River, we struggled to get bites casting crank baits for the king salmon lurking in the deep holes. Bring out the cameras, and the fish get shy! Typical stage fright on the part of the fish, I’m guessing.

Not to make excuses, here, things were set up a little bit against us. For casting crank baits, we as anglers and guides rely on a couple of things to help us. First, we need plenty of fish in the system to really make the crank bait bite shine. Lots of fish makes the salmon even more territorial, and we did not have a lot of salmon in the deep holes that day. Secondly, due to the filming, we needed lots of light to allow the high definition cameras to do their best. The ultimate crank bait bite occurs the first half hour prior to first light through the first hour after sunrise. For this morning show, we were taping live, so we didn’t even get onto the river until 9am! Not an early start at all.

On the day, we filmed with my Wolfe Outfitters head guide, Matt Dunn, and Kalin Franks, the host of the “Michigan This Morning” show. Stephanie Adkins did all of the camera work, as well played producer. It was a great experience to pull in to the parking lot at Bear Creek, one of the launches where we have Federal permits, and have all of the other boats already well on their way, leaving the parking lot and ramp empty for us to film.

Kalin started out by interviewing me, introducing Deep Blue Coffee, talking a bit about the coffee company prior to launching our boat. We chatted about how I got into the coffee business, and what I offer my fishing customers each morning with my coffee.

After launching the boat, we ran to a few different spots, where I showed Kalin and Stephanie how we cast crank baits to the king salmon that inhabit the Big Manistee River in the fall. We did a few more interview segments to fill out the segment times, discussing everything from casting basics to cured egg presentations, to the great fisheries we enjoy in northern Michigan. Despite not having a good bite to really showcase, we had a terrific time fishing with Kalin and Stephanie. We shared stories and laughed a lot—much of which is probably good not to have captured on film! Thanks Kalin, Stephanie, Matt and “Michigan This Morning”.

And last but not least, it was fun and interesting to watch the segments the next day. I used my DVR to record the segments, since I was out on another guide trip, and watched the “Michigan This Morning” show that evening with my parents and wife. Exciting to see it all come together.

Kalin Franks introducing Deep Blue Coffee.

Kalin and I discussing the finer points of cured salmon eggs for bait.

Plugging the Deep Blue Signature Blend; the Cottage Morning and Great Lakes Blends.