Showing posts with label Grand River. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Grand River. Show all posts

The Last Outing

I always get mixed emotions when it comes to the last trip of the year. After a season of stumbling out of bed early, driving to the far ends of the Alley, pounding the trails, and dealing with the extreme elements. Both my body and mind needs a break, but I feel a sense of sadness whenever I make the last trip. Blurry eyed, I make the trip, usually by myself. I want it to go on my own terms. I'm not going for a couple hours or sitting at one spot. I'm hitting one pool after another. Kicking over every stone and working as much water as possible. The only thing that will stop is when it becomes too dark. By the end of the day, I'll be wiped out. My back and shoulders will ache. The walk back will be slow and deliberate. I have no hurry to get home. What I know is that the last walk from the river, I'll look back with fondness even if the day doesn't go according. That's how I view every last outing, it's bittersweet, but I know eventually the rivers will be calling in the autumn.

The last trip today is out east. The weather today more like June as the temperatures are to be in the upper 70s. The sights and sounds of spring along the Alley are everywhere. The willows and Manitoba maples are sprouting leaves, robins singing in the dark and chorus of frogs and toads are heard in the woods. For the first time, I won't be alone as my girlfriend is making the trip. It's a later than usual start as I'm on the water at first light. That's another thing I'll miss are those early morning starts. Walking along the river in the dark and all I hear is the running water and the rocks under my boots.

I have no idea how many people will be out. Over the week as I drive through the Rocky River Metro park on my way home, nearly every parking spot is taken and I can see anglers everywhere. During the week, I've wet a line before heading into work. That's a benefit of living five minutes away from the river. Even though I have an hour to squeeze in, the morning outings have been nothing short of fun as I've hooked into a handful of feisty skippers that fight with reckless abandon. There were plenty of times I was tempted to call in and I would an hour late or blowing off the day completely.

As we drive along the road, I strain to see how many cars in the lot ahead. I see four cars and I figure there should be plenty of room to fish. With the Easter weekend, many probably elected to take the time off. The one section I want to fish is a long pool below an area where the fish spawn. After a week of high water, I wondered if most of the fish dropped all the way back to the lake. I felt the water and it's cool, hopefully, there's some in here. It turns into a grind as we start the long drawn out process of working the pool. With the exception of the two elderly anglers downstream, we have the entire pool to ourselves. I've learned from experience, that when these areas are empty by mid-morning, the earlier anglers either did well or struck out. As we finished with the lower of the pool and didn't even get a hit. The pool is eerily quiet as we see nor hear the sounds of fish. We move up to the section of the pool where the current is a little faster. The warm south wind starts whipping up as the temperature starts creeping up. My girlfriend takes a break and I continue to hammer away. I finally get a take and I feel the surge from the fish as it heads upstream. Usually, with drop backs, they'll fight with reckless abandon leaping and thrashing about. The fish bolts upstream and gets close me as it swims quickly by me. But with the snap of the line, my fish is gone as I inspect what happened. The knot failed and I'm left with a disgusted feeling because it was 8-pound test. It turns out to be the only fish from that spot. But that's late spring fishing as it can be a case of hit or miss. In past years, I had banner days and others only one or two fish.

Its almost noon as I watch angler after angler slowly walks away. With their heads slung low, they have nothing to show for. We both decide to head to another spot. Driving over the bridge I see no anglers fishing the pool below. We make our way down the hill and I hope that this spot will pay off. Again we grind it out and there's nothing. I'm left scratching my head as to why there isn't any fish. It turns out to be a bust. I see another angler above throwing lures and he catches a decent sized smallmouth, another sign that the run is almost over. Further up, I watch a guide with clients working the faster water and they don't even register a hookup. My gut tells me that this day is not going to work out.

After a brief downpour, the clouds part and the sun comes out. I make the call and we leave. The last spot is even further down and we pull in there isn't a car. In the morning before sunrise, it's always packed. We make the long walk down and I watch the turkey vultures soaring above. I'm sweating, becoming thirsty and hungry. We work the stretch and it's the same thing - nothing. My girlfriend decides to get an early start on her tan and lies on the rocks. I continue to grind away, determined to get at least a hit. Downstream, I watch another angler flaying his spey rod in vain. The sun is high and I know what the outcome will be. After an hour, I throw in the towel.

I feel a sense of disappointment because I had high hopes that we would get into some fish. But, that what happens when there's an early spring. During the last week of March, I was catching post-spawn fish. The also didn't help as it rained nearly every week. By Easter weekend, I knew the window would be rapidly closing.

I pull the rods apart and look back. I still have plenty of bait and it won't get dark until at least another five hours. But I know that girlfriend couldn't do it and I would never subject her to never ending searching of fish. I feel a pang in my stomach as we walk back and I look back for the last time. It will be another six months before I'm back here. Once we get to the car, I pull my waders off and I see all of the water marks on my pants. My patching job wasn't enough and I know it's time to replace them. I tried to squeeze another season out of them, but I know I must replace them. My boots look even worse, as they frayed and cracking. More money to shell out this summer I suppose.

I check the temperature and it's almost 80F and the wind feels hot, the weather for the rest of the week to suppose to be in the upper 60s and lower 70s. The water temperature by then will be dangerously high. Hopefully, by then most if not all will be gone, retreating to cold dark depths of Lake Erie.

I'm parched and dying for a cold beer. I know of a small tavern tucked away in Lake County, that serves some of the best wings in the area. I take a long satisfying sip of beer and glance over at the TV to watch the Cavs game. I know that the summer will go by pretty fast and eventually those cool winds of September will blow across the lake, summoning another season.

The Hike

There's something about going off the beaten trail. Walking into the unknown and seeing what's lies ahead. While some are content with sitting at their favorite hole, I prefer not to rub elbows. That can be difficult on some of the Alley's streams as solitude is practically impossible. After a hectic week at work, I need to unwind and I prefer not to listen a person complain about the latest Browns loss or politics. 

Along the Alley, you really don’t need to hike from one spot to the next. You can simply hop in a car and drive from one section to the next. That’s usually the case on the lower ends of the rivers as they run through urban areas. If you want to experience a hike than you need to go out far east or west. When it comes to epic hikes, the upper Grand is where I do it. The Grand is one of the longest of the Alley’s rivers. The upper reaches are rural and remote. Access isn’t easy and you need to be top shape if you plan to pull it off. 

When I’m doing a hike, I’ll be on my own. The old sages I fish with, couldn’t handle the rigors of it, with bad knees and all. If I was in my 20s, I probably couldn’t do it, because I was woefully out of shape. Late night clubbing, drinking, smoking and sustaining on a diet of fast food, I probably couldn’t make it more than a quarter of the mile before I would have to sit on a log hacking and wheezing. I started getting into shape in my earlier 40s after my divorce. I went from 240 down to 195 and I started running, lifting weights and eating better. I’m in the best shape and I’m as fit as a bull. Today, I can leave the youngsters in my dust. 

I love looking back at some the hikes I did and one of mine is a trip I did in late February several years ago. The eastern part of the Alley got a lot of snow during the week and the Grand had come down a fishable level. I leave home in the dark and make the drive to Harpserfield's dam. I exit the interstate and head south. I turn off to another road and make my way down the hill. It's first light as I drive down the hill and I can't see the river. As I turn the corner, the covered bridge going across the river is cloaked in a fresh coating of snow. The river above the dam is covered in ice and snow. I look over and the river is as prime as it can be and there's no slush. I’m stoked for a day on it. I park along the road and get dressed. There are a couple of cars in the lot and I can see a couple anglers below the bridge. 

When going a hike, I dress light and warm. I use an Under Armor cold base 2.0 shirt, long underwear and fleece pants. My feet are covered with polypropylene and wool socks. Anything that can wick away sweat from my body. I wear both Goretex waders and a jacket. I never wear a vest as that can weight me down. I bring along the bare necessities - hip pack with a small box of hooks, sinkers, and swivels. A tube that holds my floats and a couple of containers of spawn sacs. Despite it being chilly, I have a bottle of water in the side pocket and a couple of protein bars and some almonds. 

I begin to walk across the field and the snow is deep. The air is crisp and I can see my breath. I’ll probably be blazing a trail through the woods. A couple of anglers are fishing a spot close by. I can tell they’re not dressed for an all day event. We exchange pleasantries and from the way, I'm walking, they know I won't be low holing them. I continue downstream where I cross over. The river is at a perfect flow as I don’t have any difficulty crossing over. In the distance, I see the cliffs and hemlocks covered in snow. 

The snow is fresh and powdery, probably got about 2’ of it during the week as the area was hit with wave after wave of lake effect snow. I’m breathing a little harder, but if I was with another person, I could carry on a conversation with no problems. When it comes to doing a hike, you need to pace yourself. Depending on where I’m fishing on the Grand, sometimes I’ll walk 2 miles before fishing a section and others I’ll start fishing a half mile downstream. I continue down the trail and I veer off into the woods. It’s a little more tricky here as the snow covers downed trees and branches. I huff and puff as I climb over them. My waders restrict my movement as several times I have to sit a tree and swing my legs to over. I climb down a bank and there’s the river. 

I’m at the starting point as I’ll start working the entire stretch. Even thought I walked almost a mile in the snow, I haven’t worked up much of a sweat. The river has a tea colored stain and it moves at a leisurely pace. The air is crisp and I proceed to start fishing. I slowly get into fish, but it’s a long drawn out process. The number of fish this season has been low. This is the latest I’ve fished upstream and in better years, there would be the sounds of snapping twigs and voices behind as others make the trek downstream. Not today, with the exceptions of chattering chickadees and jays, the woods are a quiet place. 

As the morning progresses, the bite starts turning on. The pools produce some beautiful fish in full winter colors. I could be content to sit in this spot, but I have the hunger to see what lies ahead. I’m at the last pool before the river makes a sharp turn. Now that I feel I’ve caught enough fish, I’m ready to cross over. As I step in, I feel the power of the current pull at my legs. Just 10’ down, the river narrows and the turns into a small set of rapids. I know the spot well enough that I walk slightly upstream towards the tail out. Years of running through the metro park back home, my legs are strong enough to buffer the current. I slowly cross over and step out. No time to waste as I quicken my pace downstream. It’s another spot that I’ve done well in past years. The river here is very narrow as it runs along a shale cliff. I work the inner seam and hook into a male. He’s dark with a mixture of reds, silver, and charcoal. The spawn is not far away, probably another month, depending on the weather. It turns out to be the only fish from that spot. The river farther down flows too fast to hold wintering fish. 

The hike is far from over as I’m past the two-mile marker. There’s another spot where I must cross over. This is the trickiest place as the river runs over shale bedrock and the bottom is littered with rocks. Because it’s more narrow here, the current is strong even when it's at fishable levels. I slowly wade across making sure I have a good foothold. The current is pushing hard as I try to gain traction. I use the larger rocks as a buffer and I’m halfway across. The cleats dig into the shale and I shuffle around the rocks. I finally make it over and my legs are burning slightly. There’s a tail out below and I hook into several decent sized fish. So far this hike is paying off, as I’m hooking into fish at every spot and I haven’t seen one person so far. 

It’s late morning and I resume the hike. In some sections of the Grand, it can be an easy hike, because whenever it blows out the surrounding woods are scoured cleaned of vegetation. I climb up a steep hill and there’s a road that goes through the woods and right up to the river. Once again I cross over and this is a relative cakewalk. I plow through the water and over the bank. The cliffs here cloaked in snow and glisten in the sun. Huge shards of ice hang from the rocks and the sun is strong enough that they’re starting to melt. I intend to work the entire stretch all the way beyond the cliffs. I’m more than 3 miles from my car. I work the stretch and the fish are plentiful, I’m having so much fun that I start losing track of time. In this section of the upper Grand has some of the finest spawning gravel and fish often hold in the deeper pools. Once, I get done with that section, I look at the time and it’s almost three o’clock. I look downstream and there’s one more pool to fish. It doesn’t get dark until six. I have plenty of time. 

The pool produces more fish and I’m down to last of my sacs. I’m well into double digits and I more than happy with the results. The sun is slowly descending among the trees and cliffs. I take a drink of water, eat a protein bar and look at the time, almost 4:00 and I’m a little over 4 miles. If I was with the other guys, we would be lucky to make it the one mile marker and we would be at home resting on the couch. I disassemble the rod and take a deep breath, time to head home. 

Because it turned out to be such a great day, I have a little more pep in my walk. In order to conserve energy, I walk along the river. At the end of the day, every step on the rocks is a little harder on the back and legs. I feel a slight jolt whenever I step. My knees are getting a sore as I negotiate my way along the banks. I arrive at the crossing and I remind myself that I have three more before making it back. My legs are a little rubbery, I take a little more time wading across, the next one will be a killer.

My breathing is heavier as I slough through the snow. By now the shadows grow longer and the sun is starting to slip behind the cliffs. I’m working up a good sweat and I’m thankful for the years of exercising and eating right. If this was me 20 years ago, I would be huffing and puffing and sitting on a log trying to catch my breath. I reach the 2nd crossing and I gingerly move around the rocks. The cold water is a welcome relief on my knees. I make it across and I’m halfway there.

I see my tracks from earlier today and I was the only person to make this far down. It’s a quick hike up along the river and around the bend to the next crossing. It’s getting darker now and my stomach is growing. I hasten my pace some more. I cross over at the tail out above the bend. I’m sweating and breathing a lot heavier, because I still have a distance to go before the last crossing. My legs are starting to feel cramped and I can see the river and the last crossing. I get to the water’s edge and I take a deep breath. There’s no need to rush and I take my time wading over. 

Its dark by the time I cross the field and there’s my car. Everybody probably left hours ago. I have no one to share what a great day I had on the river. The only thing I hear is the water going over the dam. I pop the back hatch and sit down. I grab a water from the back and guzzle it. I catch my breath and take my toque off, I can feel the heat escaping my head. I slowly take off my jacket, waders and boots. My back is aching when I stand up, it took a beating today. I’ve often wondered how much more can my body take? My mind is willing, but my body? I can’t imagine doing this in my 60s.

I sink into the car seat and it start it. I drive through the covered bridge and head up the hill. I stop at the gas station and buy some water and beef jerky to snack on. I seriously doubt I’ll have the energy to cook when I get home. I will be stopping at Chipotle for a burrito bowl. I get on the interstate and it will an hour drive home. I know I’ll sleep good tonight. 

The End

I could hear the robins singing in the dark. I glance over at the clock and it's 5:30 in the morning. It's Sunday and I should be leaping out of bed and firing up the stove for some eggs and bacon. The phone should be ringing on where we're going to meet and after wolfing down breakfast, I should be on the road. It's the last outing of the season, I should be pumped. Instead, I have no intentions of getting out of bed. I roll over and go back to sleep. My season ended nearly a week ago.

The last trip of the season was on the Grand after work on Monday. The day before I fished the Vermilion and it was a disaster as we struggled to get any decent number of fish. That's been the theme all spring long - a lack of fish. I wasn't going to end the year with a resounding thud. The Grand was dropping nicely and I wanted to get into some drop backs before the river dropped even further before the following weekend. I finished work early and beat the traffic coming out of Cleveland. It was a beautiful evening to go fishing as the temperatures were in the upper 60s. It was a far cry from a week ago when it was in the 30s and blowing snow. You have to love the weather in Northeastern Ohio during the month of April.

I pull into the lot and wasted no time. My destination is a pool upstream just below a prime spawning section of the river. This pool is usually packed with spawned out fish resting. I walked along the upper bank and scanned the riffle for spawning fish. I couldn't see anything because the river was still murky. I continued upstream and there was the pool. In the distance, I could see a fish rising near the downed tree. I had this feeling that I was going to do well here.

I start at the "meat" of the pool, where I know the fish are holding. With the warmer water temperatures, I have an 8# tippet so I can quickly muscle in the fish. It doesn't take long to get into the first fish - a small spawned out hen. It's the same cookie cutter type of fish, I've been catching all season long - 24" and 5 pounds. Years ago, I remember battling some titans that pushed over 10 pounds spawned out. Those were some epic battles as fish leaped and thrashed about and ran me downstream. But with these smaller ones, I easily haul them in. I beached the fish, I noticed the red blisters on the tail as this little hen tirelessly dug out one redd after another to the point that her bottom tail fin was worn down flat. I quickly release her and she bolts back to her resting spot.

The action was fast as I would watch the float chug along and then suddenly go under quick. There was no light takes as several times I was late on setting the hook. But, I didn't care if I lost fish. I enjoyed the fight and waited for the next opponent. There were no large fish, but the ones I fought with, but up great battles as they leaped and took long runs. That's how the last trip of the season should be - a memorable one.

The action at the pool eventually stops and I head to another section of the river. I don't have a lot of time so I pick a place closer by. I get to the spot and the shadows are starting to creep over the cliffs as the sun gradually starts to set. I start working the run drifting off the main current hoping that some fish are resting. I spend almost an hour working the entire run and all I have is one brief hook up before losing the fish. It's evident that the run doesn't have any fish or they got beat up earlier. I make the long walk back to the car and my stomach is grumbling.

As I'm driving home, I look at the weather for the upcoming week. There's no rain in the forecast but the temperatures will be holding steady. The Grand will be low by the time the weekend arrives and the other ones will be even lower and clear. My weekend is booked with events, so getting out is going to be difficult. But quite honestly, I really have no desire to go out as I've been chasing steel since last September. Nearly all of my fishing buddies have traded in steelhead for walleye and bass.

I look back at the season, and there were plenty of firsts and all of them negative. No fish for the months of September and October, no trips to Pennsylvania, no fish over 30", and the numbers were low again. The fall was dry, early winter was very mild, late winter was very cold and this spring was cold and wet. That's life on the Alley, you have to adapt to the conditions.

I get home and open the freezer to pull out some chicken and there in the corner are the rest of my eggs. There are about eight packs of them. With the awful salmon run of last year, I sweated as the weeks went on in the fall as the tackle shop owner would tell me the grim news every week that he had no eggs. Finally, I was able to secure some, but I was careful not to overextend myself for this year. As for more eggs next season? Who knows? I got news that Michigan's salmon population has crashed to the point of no return. New York's run wasn't that great either, but their population hasn't seen the sudden crash of both Michigan and Huron. Will this be the end of getting a good supply of eggs? I hope not because I don't want to resort to keeping a couple hens for eggs.

I unpack the gear in the basement and hang up the waders. My Simms waders are practically worn out as I had to patch three tears. I've had them since 2012 and I can't really complain about the wear and tear, they stood up to my abuse. I look at the boots and they're tearing at the seams. I'll probably have to replace both waders and boots. I place the rod in the corner and I close the door. There they'll remain until the cool winds come across Lake Erie in the fall.

Is The End Final Here?

This winter has been relentless. So relentless, that at the end of February, I was placed on part-time at work. That's how slow it's been. All winter, I either sat around drinking cup after cup of coffee and staring blankly at the clock - I hated it. I would beg to the ladies up front to give me something to do. Once in a while, they would throw a bone my way. I was informed of the news on Friday and I found it welcoming. I masked my enthusiasm with a look of concern.

"Oh, what days will I work and when will I go back to full time?"

My boss tells me I working from Monday to Wednesday and I'm back to full time on April 1st. As he walks out of the lunch room and turns back and said

"At least you get two more days to go fishing"

He leaves the lunch room and I have a big shit eating grin. Most people would of been pissed, but I'm ecstatic. During the busy season, I hustle and work hard. I've stuffed a lot of cash into my savings account, just in case something like this happened. I have no car payment, no debt and my rent is dirt cheap. I could use the time off and rest for the busy season. I prayed that this god awful winter would be over when March came around.

I get home and watch the news. The weather segment comes on and perky Betsy Kling, Cleveland's most hated person this winter breaks the bad news that everybody doesn't want to hear

"More cold on the way" and she said it with such smugness.

I want to fire a brick at the bitch's head. Great, everything was falling into place for the weekend. In a matter of days, the rivers started slushing up. By the time Thursday came around most of the rivers had frozen over. My first Thursday off and the weather is awful. One of those days that you bury yourself under the blankets. There were squalls coming off the lake and the wind is gushing out the north. I look to the ceiling as I have nothing to do. I muster enough energy to get up and head over to the Y for some exercise. The following day would be just as cold and I knew the power plant would be discharging warm water all day.

Friday the wind has died down and I head to the plant. I'm starting to loath the place. It's so sterile and noisy. I miss the river and long for it. I miss walking down the trails and along the river. The cliffs, the stands of hemlock, the deep green pools and the silence. I was beginning to wonder if I would ever get back on the them. Then there was light at the end of the tunnel as warmer weather would free some of the rivers. Two of them were the Grand and the Rocky. The Rocky is in my backyard, but my playground is on the Grand. Thursday the temperature would creep into the upper 30s and Friday it would go higher into the low 50s with nothing but sun.

The lower part of the Grand was a wreck.  Massive chunks of ice scattered along the banks, in the woods and in the river. The river has been repeatedly bulldozed. The jam went on for miles all the way from Fairport Harbor to the old Painesville dam. I pull off onto a street nearby the river, I look over and the pool towards the cliffs is wide open - sweet. I head to the pool and carefully climb over the chunks of ice on top of the bank, one slip and I'm falling 15' down onto rocks. Despite wearing those big clunky Korkers, I move with relative ease. Up and over, I gradually make to the end of the bank. The river was as prime as you can get. The Grand is notorious for running stained, but since the sediment was frozen, the river has slight tea colored stain. I begin to work the pool and for the first hour, I don't even get a take. The sky is cloudy and the water is very cold, probably a couple degrees above freezing. I continue to work the pool concentrating at the tail end. I work and work and work - nothing. My gut tells me that there has to be some fish in there. Tomorrow the sun will be out and the temperature will be in the mid 50s. I leave with nothing but at least I know there's open water.

The warmer weather today brings out what I dub the "spring peepers". The peepers are what I refer to as the spring steelheader. Hibernating for the winter, they emerge once there is signs of warm weather. But I can't blame them, a warm winter day this season has been few and far between. I see several anglers near the parking lot but nobody is at the pool. Judging by the looks of them, their obesity and age would prevent them from successfully negotiating the obstacle course of ice chucks. The sun is creeping higher above and the snow is glistening. I hear the melting water drip off the chunks of ice and the side ice is getting dirty. It will be a matter of days before everything becomes high and dirty. I immediately work the tail end and try to squeeze the float as close as possible to the shelf ice. The sun is now beating down on me and feel uncomfortably warm. I mend the line and slow the float a tad - nothing. I'm a 100% positive that there are fish holding in this pool. I make some slight adjustments and cast back out. I move off the shelf ice and work more towards the slack water. The float chugs along and it goes under hard. I yank the line and I feel a head shake. Despite the water being cold, the fish has its way. I have to bust out some side ice in order to beach the fish. I catch a glimpse and it's a large fresh hen. I pull her up against the rocks and take the hook out. I lift her out of the water and feel her belly - it's pretty tight. I've caught hens in early March and watched them spill eggs. This fish was a recent arrival, that somehow made its way through the ice jams downstream. I release her and she quickly darts back into the murky depths.

The sun is doing its magic. As morning yields to afternoon, the water temp is gradually bumping up. The fish start turning on. The pool produces four more fish and all of them with the exception of one male are very bright in color. After that the pool doesn't yield anymore fish. I walk further up and the river is low enough that I can cross over the boundary. The boundary I refer to is the lair of the spey fishermen. During the spring, they flock to this section, because of the river flows faster and bottom is mostly gravel and small rocks. Where I was fishing, the river flows more slowly and the bait anglers love it here. Both sides rarely intermingle and for some they prefer it that way.

The past flooding this winter has alter the one hole above where I crossed. There was a sweet spot right below the pile of lumber and today it's about 3' deep all the way down. I'm bummed, because it was a killer spot in the winter. That's live on the streams here in the Alley. The rivers are constantly changing. The ice and high water carve out new holes and fill in old ones. I make some mental notes of the section and return back downstream. I work the tailout one more time to see if there was a fish I missed, I get nothing. There probably wasn't that many to begin with. Throughout the day the water starts to cloud up as sediment from the banks spills into the water. If the melt continues, the river will eventually become too muddy.

I'll be off the river for the weekend, the temperature is suppose to drop back in the 30s and the 20s at night. At the beginning of the week, we get a taste of what's to come. The temperature on Tuesday soars into the 60s and the rapid snowmelt on the Rocky turns the water to a bright yellow stain. The month of March on the Alley can exhibit monumental swings in the weather. A massive storm from the west is bearing down. They are calling for 5 to 9 inches of snow across Northern Ohio. Wednesday morning it's raining lightly and the Rock has blown out. As the day progresses the cold front moves in and rain changes to snow. The wind is gusting from the north and on the way back to the office, the wind is so strong that I'm driving in whiteout conditions. I beat the rush hour and make it home. Thursday morning it's only 20 degrees and cold. Many here are beaten and battered by the winter. You can see in the faces of people as they wish it would end. Unfortunately, the long term for the month is going to be more fickled weather.

Sooner or later, winter will end............we hope.