IT SEEMS TO me the middle of January is a good time to do some dreaming. Lately, I’ve been doing a lot of reading and dreaming.

Mostly I’ve been dreaming about two things: trout fishing and duck hunting. It probably comes as no surprise then, that I have been rereading my various volumes of Gordon MacQuarrie’s “Stories of the Old Duck Hunters.” It also should come as no surprise that I have been rereading my favorite “yooper” author of all time, Robert Traver.

While MacQuarrie wrote his famous stories about a wide spectrum of the outdoors, most famously about ducks and trout, but also deer, pa’tridge and sharptail grouse hunting; building bear dens; cisco seining; smallmouth bass fishing and even pine knot hunting.

If you wish to learn about how one hunts for pine knots and what they are good for in addition to being wonderful fire starters, you would have to read his story “Nothing To Do For Three Weeks.”

Traver is unquestionably the most famous writer the Upper Peninsula (U.P.) of Michigan has ever produced. In real life, his name was John Voelker, a one-time private practice attorney in Marquette, Mich., a one-time Marquette County district attorney and a one-time Michigan Supreme Court justice.

His term sitting on the latter bench ended when his novel “Anatomy of a Murder” was turned into a six-time Oscar-nominated movie. As he solemnly admitted after the movie made him a gazillion bucks, he quickly resigned his judgeship, and retired to Marquette County and his beloved Frenchman’s Pond (don’t look for that name on a Michigan atlas) trout fishing headquarters, never to do an honest day’s work again.

His stories are almost exclusively about trout fishing his favorite U.P. streams and spring ponds, although one story in his book, “Trout Madness,” relates the story of a Baraga County pa’tridge hunt in which he and his buddy got lost on a set of old logging roads. Eventually, they ran into an old Finlander yooper out in the woods whom they asked “Which of these roads can we take to Covington?” The old Finn replied “Any of dem. Dat’s all right, I doan care.”

Both of them have the tales they spun contained in multiple hardcover volumes, and I have read both of their books more times than I could count on both my fingers and toes twice times over.

Having read the better parts of their books over the past week or two, I can’t get the best of all fishes, the native brook trout, out of my mind. I already have reservations at the Brule River campground the middle of May, at a small Minnesota Boundary Waters lake in the middle of lake trout country the first few days of June and the Bay Furnace campground outside of Munising, Mich., in early July, an area where trout streams abound.

There will be a return trip to Lost Lake over Florence way where rainbow and browns are plentiful. Just down the road from there are the Pine and Popple rivers, stretches of which I first fished as a 12-year-old with my dad.

I didn’t actually make a New Year’s resolution, but if I had, it certainly would have included return trips to various branches of the Presque Isle, Ontonagon, Firesteel and a couple other favorite trout streams of mine in the U.P.

I haven’t fished the Presque Isle in many years, but how well I remember the sunny June afternoon when my wife — she who is afraid of any water, deep or shallow — sat well back on a rocky promontory while I cast a Panther Martin into the surging water from the edge of that promontory some 10 or 12 feet above the river. I managed to hoist four beautiful brookies, wriggling and thrashing, to where I sat with legs dangling over the edge. They filled a large frying pan holding sizzling bacon grease over a hot maple campfire quite nicely that evening.

A friendly yooper from Hancock watched me take a 14-inch native brookie from the Firesteel one August afternoon several years ago and then, contrary to all the rules of close-mouthed trout fishermen, took me to a secret stretch of the river reachable only by a puddle-jumping wreck of an ancient pickup truck, where I caught another 14-incher.

A good friend for years, a fellow Ducks Unlimited supporter, the “Polish padre” from Boulder Junction, owned a large piece of property butting up to Sawyer County’s famed Namekagon River. I was graciously invited to stop in for a visit there whenever I fished my favorite stretch of the river downstream from what in the old days was called Squaw Bend.

More than once, I came perilously close to going over the tops of my waders on that stretch, depending on how high the river was running, but had I gotten drenched, I would have been thinking of what MacQuarrie wrote about such dunkings. “One wrong step, and the river just reaches up and takes a man in.” I never quite took that wrong step, but I came pretty close.

Anyway, for right now, the best thing I have going for me in January are my books and my dreams.

Not a bad combination.