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There are many public servants who work for the State of New Hampshire. They toil with little recognition. Plowing and salting roads. Chasing criminals. Putting out fires. Rescuing those in trouble. They do it with little fanfare. They are often under stress to perform under duress.

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Having grown up in a family of educators, my life was filled with stories about children. I was taught that the future is the children. My parents, a school administrator and a first-grade teacher, would share stories of triumph and despair with the children in which they interacted. It was …

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Writing this weekly column and operating the North Country Angler, we get asked quite a few questions. From time to time, we will empty our mailbag (email, text, instant or in person) and share our answers with you. On with the mailbag.

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On Saturday, Feb. 6, the premier ice fishing tournament in the Mount Washington Valley will take place. The fifth annual Freedom Firefighters Association Ice Fishing Derby on Loon Lake has become known as a fun and challenging derby.

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Closing the cabin door behind himself, Troutman held a bundle of firewood to load the woodstove. He and the Old Timer were getting ready to settle in for a night of fly tying. The two took the opportunity each winter to get “upta camp” and break the winter doldrums. A warm glow from the wood…

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N.H. Fish and Game provides two days during the year in which a license is not needed. One of these days is in June, when fishing is in its prime. The other day is in January for those anglers who like to fish hardwater.

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Driving by Silver Lake this week and seeing open water, my heart sank. Silver Lake is our trophy lake trout water in the valley. It is the lake that Clay Groves, ice-fishing guide, took me out on my first winter back in the valley. It is the lake that ice anglers covet for the great ice fishing.

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Anglers are optimists. Is there any activity on the planet where you can spend hours casting tiny pieces of fuzz in the hope that an aquatic dweller will mistake the fuzz for food? Or hours watching a small piece of plastic floating in the water with a bait underneath, hoping that the plasti…

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Everyone is aware of the trials and tribulations in the year 2020. When the initial COVID lockdown took place in March, there was uncertainty in the angling community as to what may be in store. There was uncertainty everywhere.

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Here in the valley, we have been treated to a late start to winter. This week was the first cold snap and the first plowable snow. The last few years, November was the month that kicked off our winter weather. This meant that ice fishing was well underway by this time.

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There are so many rod choices these days that it boggles the mind. Fast action, medium fast, medium, slow. Mid flex, tip flex. Six foot. Ten foot. One weight. Eight weight. It’s enough to make someone cry.

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Being the owner of a shop that sells angling supplies is special. You get to interact with fellow anglers, beginner to experienced veteran. Bringing joy to a fellow angler brings joy to the Shop owner’s soul. It’s what makes all the effort worthwhile.

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As the cold air mass moved into the valley this week, it was a chilling reminder that winter will soon be upon us. For anglers, this cold blast brought one thing to mind: ice fishing.