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Take care of your boat now to save headaches later

I hope you had a happy Thanksgiving and enjoyed your break. I expressed my thanks for the great weather this November and extended open water fishing season.

The walleye bite has remained consistent over the last week since my last report. The Muskie bite was deemed "hot" last week, with anglers catching multiple fish over 40 inches per trip. Big Detroit has had the best reported catches.

We are getting into the last week or so before we will skim over with ice. For those of us that have continued to fish, I will take this opportunity to remind you to do a few headache saving boat storage considerations.

The easiest would be to take your boat to one of the several marine repair shops in our area and have them winterize you rig for you.

If you do it yourself or plan on continued late winter/early spring season open water trips here are some suggestions: drain and replace your lower unit oil, make sure all water and bait is removed from your livewells and baitwells (no need for stinky spring surprises or having to chisel out ice blocks later, not to mention the damage that can be caused), keep gas tank full and add a fuel stabilizer.

Keeping your tank full keeps your tank from condensation problems and putting moisture into you fuel.

There are several fuel stabilizers on the market that include Gas Treatment, Stabil and Sea Foam, and most are under $10.

Read labels to make sure you match the additive to your tank size. I still run a carburetor outboard, so I add my fuel treatment on one of my last trips to make sure I don't get varnish build up.

Trim down your motor and make sure all water is drained, briefly dry run all pumps to make sure they don't freeze with water in them, charge your batteries, and grease your trailer bearings.

I have marine man Tim and myself to take care of my rig and make sure I stay on the water with minimal problems.

A little time and a few bucks will go a long way to keep you trouble free and minimize costly repairs.