By now, most of you know that I am a numbers person.
The reason I can make that statement is that this annual recap of my outdoor adventures by the numbers is one of the more popular articles on this site each year.
2022 was a fantastic year for me as far as the outdoors are concerned. Here is a look back, by the numbers.
205 – Outdoor trips
I spent 423 hours either fishing, hunting, birding, or dip netting this year, a nice increase from last year’s numbers. This does not include my time spent shed hunting, though maybe I will need to start tracking that next year. This is the equivalent of over 2.5 weeks or 4.83 percent of my time in 2022.
1,063 – Fish caught
This mark is a new personal best for me. In fact, it is more fish than I caught with hook and line in the last two years combined. In total, I caught 31 different species and averaged nearly six fish per trip this year. I’ve caught 2,090 fish since February of 2020.
You can see my totals, by species, below.
95.7 – Percent of my fish that were released
This number is actually the lowest since I started keeping track. I love being able to keep a nice pile of fish for a fry on occasion, but am still happy that the overwhelming majority of my fish are released to swim another day.
118 – Suckers caught with the dip net
We didn’t get out much this year due to wet spring, but we made the most of our opportunities. My groups averaged nearly two dozen suckers per dip netting outing.
63.63 – Percent of successful waterfowl hunts
It was one of the slower waterfowl hunting seasons I can recall, but we still dropped a bird on almost two-thirds of our hunts.
117 – Ducks banded during our morning at Collins Marsh
My dad and I got to help the DNR band ducks in late summer. That day, we captured, banded, and released 117 birds, including 111 mallards and six wood ducks.
58 – Species of birds spotted and logged into eBird
This is another personal best for me. Thirty-four of these species came on a single morning birding in Maywood this spring.
I now have 75 species on my birding life list.
6 – Deer harvested on our annual drive weekend
My friends and I assemble the weekend after Thanksgiving each year for a series of deer drives. In 2022, we harvested six deer in under 36 hours and sent everyone home with some venison.
29- Bodies of water fished
For the second straight year, I got to fish in a different state. My fishing adventures spanned 10 different counties and featured nine bodies of water I have never fished before. The Sheboygan River was my location of choice, encompassing 40.5 percent of my trips.
1 – Ice fishing tournament won
I entered a pair of ice fishing tournaments this past year and was fortunate enough to win one of them. I placed first in the crappie category in the inaugural Twisted Pair Fisheree on Beechwood Lake. This was the first tournament fishing win of my career.
40.75 – Inches (in length) of my biggest fish
My dad and I were out on our annual salmon fishing trip with Crazy4Chrome Guide Service this fall when I pulled in a king that measured just a touch under 41 inches. It was the longest fish of my life, to date. In fact, it met the criteria for the Wisconsin Angler’s Club (our state’s version of a Master Angler Certification).
The paperwork has been submitted to the DNR to formalize this fish’s standing in the history books.