Summer brings change in outdoor activities

Well, here we are, right on the edge of summer. Lots of things will occur soon or already have occurred.

For our agriculture community, we see our wheat harvest. Man and machine going at it to finish a crop. Wheat prices are good and with good weather many farmers can reap what they have sown. And, of course, an accident-free harvest season is a perk for anyone.

Father's Day occurs June 17. Try to do something with or for the elder man that did the best he could to raise you. Sometimes these older men can be a little cantankerous. Bear in mind we might be like this in our golden days.

School will be out by now. The roads we drive on now might have small children playing in places we normally don't see them. These young ones are just going about their summertime playing and having a good time. Ninety-nine percent of them are as innocent as driven snow. Look out for them.

If an older student comes to you for a summer job, try to find something for him to do. For many youngsters this will be a learning experience. You might get a teenager off a computer and teach him a little something about our everyday rural life.

College students, especially those with ag backgrounds or majors, can be real treats, for you and them. I remember an ag-engineering class I participated in at the Great School of Minds in the early 1970s.

The older professor was teaching on horsepower requirements and various equipment requirements. Being raised on a farm, we pretty well knew what took what to pull or operate something.

And then it happened. One day during lecture, he made this statement: “John Deere is on the verge of changing farming. They are producing a 4020 tractor. This tractor has 40 drawbar horsepower and 20 pto horsepower.” Wonder what he would have thought of an International 806? So, do you see what a young college student might actually learn?

If you have a graduating senior who is the outdoor type and you just don't know what to give him or her, consider a membership in the NRA. This is a very educational and informative organization helping preserve our outdoor and shooting activities. Call (800) 877-672-2000.

Another idea for the outdoor type is a lifetime hunting and fishing license. Check with your state fish and game officials for details.

Back to kids. Many will take to our many lakes and streams. With a boat involved, look after them. An example: Here in Louisiana it takes three people to water ski. One person to drive or operate the boat, an observer to watch for things, and, obviously, the skier.

There must be three Coast Guard-approved life jackets with these three people. Understandably, there must be a personal floatation device, PFD, on a vessel for everyone on board.

Again in Louisiana, a PFD, proper boat registration, a fire extinguisher, and the proper license will keep the game wardens out of your pocket.

Many states require a boating safety certificate to operate a motor boat. Always check with your state fish and game officials for exact details.

On June 21 we will experience the first day of summer, our longest daylight day, the summer solstice. I can't wait for June 22. At least we will be headed downhill toward hunting season.

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