Siouxland Fishing, the art form, Arnolds Park

27 Apr

I ventured a couple hours north the end of last week to the small town of Arnold’s Park, Iowa, population just under 1,200. But during the summer months that population swells because it is located in the lakes region of Iowa and has an amusement park with one of the oldest wooden roller coaster structures in America. It’s also part of the Iowa Lakes Region. With a very unusual winter and now spring, with the weather temperature swinging from extremely cold to hot within a day or two of each causing strange weather occurrences, Friday was a very nice spring day. The temperature reached into the low 70’s and made a very nice drive north. I reached the town around mid-morning and didn’t anticipate what I might find. Summer tourism has not yet kicked in and so the town was fairly quiet. Then I came upon the pier. I pulled in and found a parking spot. There were all manners of anglers fishing with their lines dropped into the water below. This pier and marina is situated in one of the lakes of the area of which there are three principal lakes.

I saw a woman sitting by herself, fishing pole at her side just watching the pier area. I asked her if she wasn’t going to crash the “all boys” fishing party over there. She just smiled and shook her head. She said she and her husband had been fishing where she is sitting, then he got up and took the bait they were using with him to go to the pier and join the others. So without bait, she wasn’t going to have much luck and decided to just enjoy the nice morning sitting and watching. Although she did mention that her husband would probably catch some fish and would clean them himself, so she would benefit from his effort.

In talking with another fisherman, he said the fishing had been pretty good that morning, already catching a few blue gills. Small, roundish, and plump fish that are good pan fried. He said there were also crappies, large and smallmouth bass and walleye. He seemed content. And on such a nice day, blue sky, light breeze and fish a jumpin’, what a better way to start a long weekend or any weekend.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

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