September is a perfect time to come visit me in Newport, RI. The weather is still beautiful and there’s plenty to do with the Newport Boat Show in town and some world class fishing.
Your Retirement Life: Fishing Block Island
It’s hard to beat the striped bass fishing off Block Island. In this video you see the voyage from Newport, RI to the Block for some late Summer striped bass fishing.
Don Smith explains more about fishing around Block Island at On The Water:
Block Island earned its reputation as a legendary striper-fishing destination many years ago. These days, her waters draw numerous charter boats and recreational fishermen, who troll, jig and drift for stripers. At the height of the season, it’s not unusual to see a hundred boats working the waters near Southwest Ledge at one time. Once the sun goes down, however, most of the boats head back to port. And under the cover of darkness, some truly huge stripers move in to feed around the rocky shores and beaches of the Block.
My favorite time to fish Block Island is in the dark of night, and I’ll spend approximately 70 nights each season out there with my fishing partner, Peter Vican. As Peter jokingly puts it, he doesn’t want to go home to his wife and I have no life – so we go fishing. The truth is we share a passion for striper fishing and get out every opportunity we have.
Our trips have yielded plenty of large bass. For us, a good night of fishing is one where we catch and release a few dozen bass, 20 pounds or heavier. Along with the huge numbers of 20-pound-plus bass, we’ve also found a few monsters. The biggest one we’ve landed was caught in July a few years ago, when Peter bested a 76-pound, 14-ounce striper – the largest striper on record caught by rod and reel from a boat, and a Rhode Island State record.
Read more here.
Self-Reliance Always a Good Idea
I woke up in the middle of the night last week thinking about how my ammo is stored. Thankfully my worries were put to rest after referring back to this article by Kyle Wintersteen. On Saturday evening around six we lost power from a severe thunderstorm. Our generator kicked on but it doesn’t provide enough juice to light up the whole house. That event provided the kick in the you-know-what to take proper inventory of flashlights and batteries. It also was an unexpected opportunity to review emergency situations with the family.
Modern, factory-loaded rounds are designed to function reliably in conditions ranging from the arctic to the tropics. Therefore as long as you prevent exposure to extreme heat, high humidity and temperature fluctuations, your ammunition can be expected to last 10 years.
According to Rick Patterson, Managing Director of SAAMI, “In fact as long as your ammunition is stored at normal room temperatures with low humidity, it can function reliably for decades.”
It takes more than just a warm day to detrimentally impact ammunition—SAAMI believes the breakdown begins around 150 degrees Fahrenheit. There are very few environments where stored ammo can reach those extremes, but the trunk of a vehicle is one of them.
“Definitely avoid storing ammunition in a car on a hot sunny day—that’s probably the single most likely scenario that could cause problems for the average shooter,” Patterson explained. “With extremely high temperatures, you get rapid degradation of the ammunition components. The case and bullets are relatively inert in terms of temperature, but the chemical properties of the gunpowder and priming mixture can be affected … Over time, you’ll see a drop in performance, perhaps to the point of going click rather than bang.”
Theoretically, extreme cold could eventually impact ammunition, but it isn’t worth your concern. High heat kills otherwise good ammo, and that’s the primary thing to avoid in regards to temperature. Rapid fluctuations could, however, also prove detrimental over time. So if you’re among the many Americans storing shells in garages, perhaps you should reconsider.
“It’s easy to forget just how much conditions vary through the year, let alone over the course of many years,” said Tim Brandt, Media Relations Manager for Federal Premium Ammunition. “Here in Minnesota it can hit 100 degrees in the summer and negative 30 in the winter.”
Wintersteen goes on to explain the dangers of humidity to ammunition, and I encourage you to read his advice here. While you’re checking on your ammo storage, do a quick review of the ways you store other supplies. Be sure to first consider your water storage plan.
Survive and Thrive this Month.
“Your Survival Guy”
P.S. Has the Time Come for Defensive Stocks to Drive the Market?
“Valuation concerns have already crept into the market, some investors said, as defensive stocks that tend to post lower growth than companies like Amazon and Facebook have outperformed,” reports the WSJ. “The top five performing S&P 500 sectors the past three months are all defensive, Bank of America Merrill Lynch said in a recent note, including consumer staples, utilities and health care.”
Defensive stocks tend to be the ones paying dividends, and dividends are the backbone supporting the recent strength in our Retirement Compounders®.
Let the good times roll? Great lyrics from the Cars but it’s a song I can’t get out of my head thinking about the money piling up by the truckload at Vanguard’s back door. We’re talking nearly $300 billion in the first nine months of this year alone. All of that money unloaded and stacked up with the rest of the $4.7 trillion at the firm. That’s a lot of confidence in one company. And maybe Vanguard deserves it thanks to the tireless work of founder Jack Bogle on the power of low cost index investing. But where is all that money going?
As I’ve stated in my piece on balanced funds, I believe high powered money, unfortunately, is crowding out the retirement investor like you. You are the investor I’m writing to, not the huge foundations, pensions, or trusts, that have their own armies of advisors who probably look at Vanguard as just a piece of their massive wealth preserving puzzle.
What happens when this crowd, the big money, decides to pack up and leave? The big fish can basically do what they want, but unfortunately their actions affect the smaller fish. That makes me uncomfortable. A better way might be to separate yourself from this crowd. I’d be happy to talk with you about how to do that. You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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E.J. Smith - Your Survival Guy
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