Sunday, January 1, 2012

Fat Boy's Outdoors Top Ten Contributions in 2011

Happy New Year everyone!
This was my last fish caught in 2011, my personal best walleye.  It was 26 inches long, and hit a musky lure while targeting muskies on a local river.  I've caught my share of nice fish this year which make for great outdoor moments, but it's the more important things that make for a great year.  I'll detail them below.

I thought that I'd use a familiar theme to bring in the new year by recapping off the top of my head the top ten contributions to the Fat Boy Outdoors blog, and give thanks when appropriate for helping me kick off the first year of this blog.  This list is not in any order, but instead is just a list.  Everything on the list are great memories that will put 2011 on the books as one of my best outdoor years ever.  If there is any order to this, it's only how these ideas popped into my head.  I can easily come up with ten more great moments, but I'm going to try and keep this brief.

1)  Creation of the Fat Boy's Outdoors Blog - First, I'd like to start off by giving thanks to Bass Junky, for inspiring me to start blogging back in May 2011.  I never thought that I'd enjoy doing this much less think that anyone would follow what I'd have to say.  This all began when reading one of his posts on, asking everyone to post their personal fishing sites.  He has been maintaining the opening post ever since to bring peoples blogs on that site to the forefront.  In addition, he helped me with several questions that I had when starting out as a new blogger.  Thanks Bass Junky, and here's to our next successful blogging year.  Make sure that you check out his blog, Bass Junkies Fishing Addiction.

2)  Gene Mueller Interview - It's not every day that anglers or hunters have an opportunity to talk and learn from a local icon or celebrity.  By chance, Gene Mueller, the Outdoors Columnist for the Washington Times, commented on one of my blog posts.  I responded back with thanks, and while thinking about what types of things our readers would like to read, came up with the concept of an interview with Gene.  He agreed to participate, and the blog post resulted in one of the most read posts on my blog.  If you missed it, here's the link:  Interview with Gene Mueller, Outdoor Writer Celebrity.  Gene's insight and outdoors experience is fascinating, and even for those who don't live in the Washington, D.C. area, his articles and column are well worth reading.  Please visit his blog, Gene Mueller's World of Fishing and Hunting and his newspaper column,
Since Gene's interview, we've struck up kind of an on-line friendship.  Thanks Gene, for helping me out with my blog, promoting it, and for all of your writing tips and advice, and for your friendship.  Here's to another great outdoor year!

3)  Fishing With Howard - I've been fortunate to get outside and fish many times this year, more than I have in a long long time.  Howard Boltz has been my enabler, going fishing almost weekly and helping me to amass so many good photographs to document my trips and share with the readers here.  The fishing was great in 2011, but it doesn't mean much unless you can share it with a good friend, and he's been there for me.  Thanks buddy!  If it wasn't for him, I wouldn't have much to share with you all.  His contributions to this blog have been there since the first few posts.

Here's Howard with a nice bass caught right after Hurricane Irene blasted through our area.  Howard has contributed to this blog by taking many of the pictures of my fish caught this year that I've shared with you, by taking me out on his boat and sharing tons of fishing time with me.  We had a great 2011, and 2012 promises to be even better.

4)  Jim Cumming as Guest Author - My good friend, Jim Cumming, wrote a guest article recently, titled, Small Stream Magic, Going with the Flow.  If you haven't read it yet, I encourage you to do so.  Jim is one of the best small stream anglers that I know, and his passion for small streams is contagious.  His post was one of the most popular posts on my blog in 2011.  Thanks Jim, for your contribution.  We all look forward to your next article.  I'd be honored to post it on my blog next time too.  In addition, I look forward to spending some time with you soon on the water.

Jim shares his passion for small streams with Fat Boy's Outdoors.  Make sure that you check out his post, linked above.  I love this picture by the way.  Jim and I shared some great times fishing the local streams in my area for smallmouth bass and brook trout.  Hopefully I'll be able to visit him in Maine to rekindle some of those moments on his home waters.

5) Fishing with Bob - My good friend Bob Barber has taken me to some spots this year that I wouldn't have been able to do without him.  We've had some good trips and some tough trips, and we've caught some great fish this year.  Without him, I wouldn't have caught my personal best musky and walleye (pictured above).  The great fishing opportunities are huge, no doubt, but it's our friendship that makes the good fishing trips great.  Thanks for taking me fishing Bob, and for our friendship over the years.  We've had some great fishing trips over the years, but the ones in 2011 will go down as some of the best!

Here's Bob with a nice fat walleye from our local river.  Bob's boat was the means to get to some great fishing,   But it wasn't the boat that made the trips special, it was the company.  Thanks Bob for a great 2011!

6)  Fishing with Other Friends - Guys like Mark McWilliams and Dave Roberts provided me with some opportunity to obtain some nice fishing pictures and catches during 2011.  We had a great time together, and those trips inspired me to write about some bass fishing techniques.
Mark McWilliams with a dandy largemouth bass, with Howard looking on.

Dave Roberts, pictured here with a spunky largemouth bass, and I struck up a friendship on the water after sharing fishing stories on  Thanks Dave, for taking me fishing and giving me something to blog about.
7)  My Favorite Web Fishing Forums - I'd also like to thank the Founder and Administrator of the following web forums for supporting the promotion of my blog on his web fishing forums:;;  and  Also, the following web fishing forums allowed me to promote my blog:  Eastern PA Fishing Reports;;; and Fishing Maryland, so I'd like to take this opportunity to thank the administrators of those sites.  Please visit those forums when you have time.  There's a lot of good people on there to share fishing and hunting information with.  Not only that, I've made some great friends on those sites as well to fish with.

8)  Fellow Blogger, DadTB - I appreciate the support of fellow blogger, Tom Boyd, for following and promoting my blog.  I met Tom through some of the fishing forums above, although I've never had the pleasure of fishing with him, I've followed his blog since it's beginning.  He's a great guy and always posts interesting fishing stories and reports when searching for one of my favorite fish, the smallmouth bass of the mighty Susquehanna River in Pennsylvania.  He also posts fishing news related to access and conditions on his site, especially around the Susky.  I encourage you to visit Tom's blog titled, Fishing With Dad.  Thanks Dad for helping Fat Boy's Outdoors in having a great 2011.

Tom Boyd, a.k.a. "DadTB", with a football of a Susky smallie.
9)  Fossil Collecting Friends - I'd also like to thank some of my fossil collecting friends for providing material for the fossil sections of my blog and for taking me collecting with them.  In addition, to thank my daughter for accompanying me on some of the fossiling expeditions earlier this year.  Although I haven't collected as much this year, the few times that I got out were really special with her.  Thanks go out to Kevin May, Steven Ferguson and Daryl Sarafin for helping out with the fossil sections of this blog, and for Kevin taking my daughter and I to one of his special spots, and for the O'Sheas for their company and friendship in the fossiling community.  Also, I'd like to give a shout out to Mike Taggert, an avid fossil collector that is serving our country in Afghanistan.  I look forward to the day that he'll be home soon to collect with us again.  Thanks Mike, for all that you and your fellow servicemen do for us.

Mike Taggert collecting in a stream a couple years ago.  Mike is now in Afghanistan.  Happy New Year Mike, I'm looking forward to your return to the States for some awesome collecting trips.
10)  You, the followers and readers of my blog - Finally, I'd like to thank you all for following and reading my blog, and for checking back in from time to time.  I hope that you've liked what you've read so far, and in some cases I hope that I've helped you in some way to enjoy the outdoors.  Together, we've had a terrific 2011, and I sincerely hope that you visit again throughout 2012. I hope that you all had as much fun reading this blog as I did writing it.

The year 2011 came to a close, providing me with beautiful scenery like this, along with some great fishing, hunting and fossil collecting.  I'll continue to share my experiences throughout 2012, along with some more pictures, fishing tips, and other outdoors related articles.  I wish everyone a great and Happy New Year!

1 comment:

Art said...

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