Monday, August 29, 2011

Interesting Week Fishing and Fire

Way out in the boonies of Fulton County there is a guy creating the ultimate back yard pond. Not just any pond or the typical backyard, but a 37 acre intensively manicured back yard along the spoon river! Lots of prairie grass, wetlands, trails and this new pond! Very cool, here are some pics of pond under construction:

How cool is this fish condo!

One thing very interesting about this guy is that he is a big time hunter, but not really a deer hunter. He is a coyote hunter and has an amazing rifle range to practice taking loooong shots. Can you imagine regularly taking 400-500 yard shots with the occasional 800 yard take down? Thats insane. Anyhow here are some pics of his office:

So back on subject, once the pond fills it will be a dynamite fishing and swimming hole! Catfish, Bass, Crappies, and Walleyes! We are gonna really think outside the box with this stocking and management. Dont try this one on your own.

So another interesting twist to the week was I spent some evenings helping my brother set second floor walls and then trusses on his new house. That is where we snapped this spider web pic:

So then the weekend came and we did some fishing. Noah, Chef Todd and I caught a bunch of catfish:

We also caught a ton of bass on a mid-day topwater bite over deeeep water which was fun and we caught and ate this muskie: Seems kinda crazy to eat a muskie, but I have too many in that particular lake and am harvesting about 10-12 per year. I had to get a pic of Todd cleaning a muskie!

So then we had a large group of friends and family out from Church for a cookout Sunday afternoon. We made sure all 27 kids caught a hybrid striper and accomplished that in about 45 minutes!!! That was awesome for them to battle big fish and try to hold onto the rod. We kept them all and cleaned them up for each family to take a package of fresh fish home. Here are some pics:

So while cooking burgers for dinner one of the most interesting and terrifying events of my life occurred. Jared and I were flipping burgers on our big grill when one of the propane canisters stopped working. It was a big 4 foot tall industrial tank. I switched it to the other side of the grill and it still didnt work, we assumed it was empty. My dad went and found a small tank to exchange it out with.

So when I went to undo the big tank again and in a hurry to get the new tank on, I neglected to turn off the main shut off on the big tank. Dumbest mistake of my life and it almost cost me my life and many other peoples lives. Keep in mind that I already switched the tank out once. Well it turns out that the big propane tanks do not have check valves on them like standard ones do and it turns out that the tank wasnt empty, just clogged. Usually the small propane tanks do not let gas out unless they are hooked up and pushed in, unfortunately the big tank didnt have that safety feature.

Well, while I was undoing the regulator it blew off the tank and the propane started blowing directly into the grill and Jared and I were completely engulfed in flames with a load explosion. It kind of blew us back several feet and the big tank sounded like a jet engine with flames 20 feet across pouring out of it while it was spewing out gas. We had 3 other propane tanks right there in the flames and the main gas line to the building hooked up to the other grill all right in that fire zone. Flames burned the walls and windows and screens 25 feet across the porch all the way up to the ceiling.

That is when the whole world slowed down into slow motion but yet all I can remember was that this was the end and I couldnt let the whole place blow up with everyone and their kids playing in and around the pavilion. I was seriously in the fire yet felt no pain, I kinda remember being in the flames and figured being burned to death would hurt alot worse. So anyhow a few moments before the whole place blew up, and after I had already made it out of the fire, I was told (but dont remember) that I went back into the fire, somehow found and grabbed the big propane tank that was spewing fire and dragged it out of the building.

Everyone was terrified and thought I was going to be severely burned or even killed. I thought I was being severely burned and that this was the end, but yet I felt no pain, in the fire and not being burned was a miracle that I will never forget.

This isnt a story about what I accomplished, because if it was I managed to set the place on fire and nearly killed quite a few people while burning my brother in-laws arms from his finger tips to his biceps. The rest of the story is where God took over and miraculously saved us from a very terrible disaster. Why he spared me from any injury? Not even a minor burn or singe. I should be dead with skin oozing off my body and instead I am typing a blog post about being in an explosion engulfed in flames and not harmed. To God be the glory!

So Jared got back from the emergency room late that evening sporting some stylish new sleeves:

He called several times from the hospital just to make sure that I was ok and to let me know that he was fine. He was in good spirit and realizes that everything happens for a reason and that good will come from this catastrophe. Praising God when his arms are second degree burned! Its good to know that I can burn a guys arms off and he still loves me and is more concerned about me than him.

This morning I slept in a little longer, I drove a little slower, I prayed alot more, and I lived life very thankful that no one else was injured! I am still shaken up a bit. Hope you can learn from my experience- In all things remember to God be the glory and that no matter who you are HE can save you from the fire! There is so much more to this life than work, fish, and deer.


  1. Holy cow!!!!! Glad to hear that everyone came out of this relatively unscathed. God definitely took over on this one.

  2. After going through that ordeal, I'm sure you don't have to be reminded to enjoy the little things in life.

  3. jared's ok, I made hime some salsa:)

  4. What a horrifying experience, I can't even imagine.

  5. God is truly AMAZING!! What a miracle!

  6. Praising God my sister still has her husband!!! (and you didn't dunk me that day!)