Mandan News

Vern Davis: Dirty times in the grinder

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Hello from Morton County Parks.

Here we are, past the middle of the summer already, and it seems like the summer has just begun.

Fishing in the Fort Rice area has really fallen off in the last couple weeks; where there were 40 to 50 rigs parked at Fort Rice Recreation Area, there are now one or two. One weekend there were more than 140 rigs on a Saturday. Everyone was catching a limit in a hour or two and they were all happy. This really put a strain on a grinder in our fish cleaning station, and it plain wore out. Luckily, we had a spare rebuilt unit to replace the bad one. Ever thought about what that would take to replace? Boy, let me tell you – it ain’t fun.

The grinder unit is about 30 inches tall and weighs at least 120 pounds. So Tim crawls inside the unit – removes the old worn out one and puts in the rebuilt – me? I’m handing wrenches, crow bars, nuts and bolts in and out. All of this takes about three or so hours – when we finished, you didn’t want to be around us.

Tim showered a couple times and washed his clothes through at least two cycles – I only had to shower once and I don’t know how many times my wife cycled my clothes through. I did drive home with the windows wide open all the way. The pickup still smelled the next day. Just another day at the Parks.

Next time you use one of the fish cleaning stations, think about how lucky you are that you don’t have to take care of them. Dollar for dollar, they are the most expensive unit to maintain. But that’s another story.

That’s about it for this month – hope to be here again in September.