Caribou Gear

Shocking

Wapiti Warrior

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Feb 24, 2011
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355
Location
Billings, Montana
Something weird happened to us out on Fort Peck Lake that I have never witnessed before (and hope I never do again). A friend and I were in my boat fishing, I was holding my fishing pole when I got a shock. At first I wasn’t sure what happened, but when I got a shock the second time I was surprised. I told my friend and he says to me at that same moment he got shocked twice too. We both noticed our fishing poles were making a buzzing noise, just like electricity running through them. I also noticed the live well pump wasn’t working either, making a weird noise. There were also small fish jumping all around us, like something was chasing them under the water. The only dark cloud was to the south of us and it wasn’t making any threatening noises nor was it close to us. I figured I had a bad connection in my 24 volt system in the boat and was getting shocked by it. I turned all the electronics off but we still could hear the buzzing in our poles. My friend said if we feel the hairs stand up on our body’s things are going to get bad. We weren’t sure what to do, we could go to shore, start the boat and head to camp or just see what happens. This all took place in about a 5 – 10 minute span. Then the noise stopped and the live well pump started working again. As the dark cloud was getting farther away we could hear rumbling from thunder in it. We laughed and said it must not have been our time to go and continued to fish. When we got back to camp we told my wife and our other friends, who were fishing in another boat down the shore about our experience and they said they had the same one, except nobody got shocked. It was truly a weird experience. :eek:
 

Z Barebow

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Oct 24, 2011
Messages
493
Something similar has happened to me.

Fishing a MN lake. T Storm was still plenty far off (So I thought) I was leaned over with my arm on the outboard. It felt like there were needles poking my arm. I jerked back. I reeled up and cast out my jig n minnow. As the lure dropped, the line rose into the air. I as I peeled off more line, more line went straight up into the air. I pulled back my rod and the sound it made was similar to the sound of pulling socks from the dryer. (Finally the light bulb comes on).

I reeled up as fast as I could and went wide open until I hit the shore.

(Since then, I had it happen another time on Sakakawea, but I was less then 60' from shore. So I just hit the shoreline and took up shelter, in the fetal position!)
 

Big Fin

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Dec 27, 2000
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15,125
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Bozeman, MT
Had the same thing happen on Canyon Ferry a few years back. It was so bad, the sparks were arching from my rods that were leaned against the inside of the boat. It ended up melting the mono line where it would arch across. After spending five minutes searching for the short in my boat, I came to the same conclusion you did; it's not my boat that is generating this charge. Freaky as hell when you realize you are in a serious electrical cloud and you are the greatest object out on this very flat surface, holding long graphite rods. You quickly throw the rods down in the bottom of the boat.

I wasn't far from shore, so I told the two guys with me to sit down and I headed to the boat ramp. We had barely walked up to the truck and all hell broke lose. What didn't look like much in the way of lightning clouds started hammering lighting everywhere. It is the closest I've ever come to pushing the limits of stupidity while on the lake. I've never had that much static electricity in my presence, ever.
 

NoWiser

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Feb 12, 2013
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Location
Minnesota
That is scary! I've had it happen to me a couple of times and I hate it. One time I made a cast and my line just hung up in the air and wouldn't fall to the water. A storm was just on the other side of an island and we didn't see it coming. When I was trying to get my line to fall, I got the shock. Not knowing what to do, I dropped the rod, laid down in the bottom of the boat, and prayed. The worst part is knowing that there is no way you'll see it coming.

Fishing Lake Winnie in northern MN once a dark cloud approached us, at which point I remarked that it looked pretty "ominous". For the next 10 minutes, as it passed over us, I had to endure terrible ridicule for using such a fancy word. I turned around to give the cloud one last look and a tornado had dropped out of it and was sucking the water up out of the lake a mile behind us. Now, to this day, my buddy gives me a hard time. He thinks the word ominous means "full of tornadoes."
 

RobG

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Dec 10, 2010
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4,994
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Bozeman, MT
I remember this happening to Fox Mulder when he got abducted by aliens. Did you check your watch for lost time?
 

smalls

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Dec 16, 2003
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red river of the north
Last summer I had the family at the in-laws place on a small North Dakota reservoir when the dark clouds came rolling in. I went to drop the family off at the dock then my father-in-law was going to meet me at the boat ramp about a mile up the lake.

I was holding the aluminum pole on the dock as the family hopped off when lightning struck the water less than 200 yards away. With a simultaneous flash and crack my hand and arm went dead and the inside of my mouth hurt like a son of a gun. I believe that the charge arced across my mouth possibly between fillings. I could taste burnt flesh for about 2 days afterwards. I started the boat and beached it and waited the storm to pass.

Water and electricity do funny things.
 

NKQualtieri

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Jun 4, 2015
Messages
250
Location
Bozeman, MT
I was holding the aluminum pole on the dock as the family hopped off when lightning struck the water less than 200 yards away. With a simultaneous flash and crack my hand and arm went dead and the inside of my mouth hurt like a son of a gun. I believe that the charge arced across my mouth possibly between fillings. I could taste burnt flesh for about 2 days afterwards. I started the boat and beached it and waited the storm to pass.

Whoa, that's so intense! Glad you're okay!
 
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