Big bass, amazing bear, and more from the outdoors

Posted on: June 27, 2016 | Bob Frye | Comments

Pond bassNicholas Spirnak with his big game land 69 largemouth bass.

Just a few odds and ends from around the outdoors today…

= It’s always good to see kids outside and enjoying the outdoors. It’s especially cool to see them doing well.

That was the case with 11-year-old Nicholas Spirnak.

He and his dad, John, fish Lake Arthur a lot. Living in Cranberry, it’s their home water. But they also fish other lakes, including Wilhelm, Pymatuning and a number of smaller lakes and ponds on state game lands.

It was on one of those, a pond on game land 69, that Nicholas landed the above 17-inch largemouth bass. He caught it on a white plastic frog.

= In New Jersey, meanwhile, a famous bear has made another appearance.

It’s nicknamed Pedals because it walks around on its two hind feet. That’s the result of injuries to its two front legs.

The bear, first spotted wandering the suburbs last year, hadn’t been seen this spring or summer, leading some to wonder if it had perished. But, according to the Associated Press, it was recently spotted alive and well.

One homeowner even got video footage of the bear. It can be seen here.

= Pennsylvania state lawmakers are halfway to allowing the Game and Fish and Boat Commissions to set their own license prices.

The Senate, by votes of 46-2 in each case, approved Senate Bills 1166 and 1168 last week. Bill 1166 refers to the Game Commission, 1168 to the Fish and Boat Commission.

Both were referred to the House of Representatives game and fisheries committee for consideration.

One step away from successfully passing through the House, meanwhile, is House Bill 231, which would allow doe licenses to be sold through the automated licensing system. That would pave the way for buying them over the counter, at any issuing agent, rather than through county treasurers only.

= Pennsylvania hunting licenses went on sale on June 20. Federal duck stamps are now on sale, too.

This year, for the second in a row, it’s possible to buy them over the counter from any license issuing agent. Buyers don’t walk out of the store with one, though. Hunters get a temporary stamp, with the official one mailed later.

= There some new waterways conservation officers on the job, locally and across the state.

The Fish and Boat Commission graduated 18 officers from its training school last week.

Matthew Colian of Cresson in Cambria County was assigned to eastern Armstrong and Indiana counties. Timothy Haas of Glenshaw in Allegheny County was assigned to Lawrence and Butler counties, while Daniel Wilson of Dravosburg was assigned to southern Westmoreland County.

Matthew Raetsch of Malvern in Chester County was assigned to western Allegheny County. David Raulfs Jr. of Allentown in Lehigh County was assigned to Washington County.

Tyler Soety of Corry in Erie County was assigned to eastern Erie.

= Here’s a wild tale. According to UPI, a Russian woman 40 weeks pregnant decided to accompany her husband and family in a fishing trip.

She went into labor. Attempts to get her to a hospital bogged down, literally, when their truck got stuck in the mud. Rescuers were called in.

That was all bad enough. But the area was crawling with bears attracted by the sight, sound and smell of the birth, apparently. Police among those who responded had to fire shots into the air to keep nosy bears at bay.

The whole story can be found here.

= Finally, there’s been some research in recent years showing how far young bucks travel to set up their own home ranges. But how about does?

They can cover some ground, too.

Check out this post – by clicking here – to see how they wander, and how, at times, they overcome physical barriers. It’s pretty interesting stuff.

Bob Frye is the editor. Reach him at 412-838-5148 or See other stories, blogs, videos and more at

Share This Article

Shop special Everybody Adventure products today!

Bob Frye is a storyteller with a passion for all things outdoors. He hunts, he fishes, he hikes, he camps, he paddles, backpacks and snowshoes depending on the season. If he’s not an expert at anything, it’s because he’s passionate to try a little bit of everything.