Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Big Pike

So the boys, Kevin, Scott and Sean wanted to catch a big pike! We loaded up the big baits and went Hawg Hunting.

We were trolling big Jakes and Ernie baits made by Musky Mania Tackle over suspended bait fish. I told the guys if we had a shot at a real monster we were going to have to put some serious time over open water. Sometimes finding these big fish are like a needle in a haystack. Well we found that needle and it didn’t take long. About 20 minutes into the trolling session I saw the rod bend and the fish was on.

Sean took the rod and did battle! About 30 feet from the boat I saw this fish come up and I realized we had a real fish. This was Sean’s first big fish and he fought the fish like a pro. We netted the monster and took some shots and let her go!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The Musky Mission

Toby K and I had the pleasure of fishing with Dave, Rick, Wayne and Jared over the past couple of days. Our mission was to catch a few muskies....easy task right? Rick especially wanted to catch one to get a replica made for his office. Our work was cut out for us!

With the warm water temps the musky fishing was pretty good prior to the guys showing up but we where faced with a tremendous cold front. Yikes!

Day one it was Dave, Rick and I in my boat and Wayne and Jared in Toby’s boat. These guys had never musky fished before so I was pumped to be able to show them some fish and hopefully get a few to eat despite the cold weather. We pulled up to our first spot and we started to cast. Not ten minutes into fishing “fish on” and a nice one. Before we knew it fish off. Crap! The next cast “fish on” right next to the boat and again the stupid thing got off. I couldn’t believe it! Two fish in 10 minutes lost. Although we lost the fish it was pretty intense and fun for the Dave and Rick but we needed to get one in the net. They were nice fish by the way. I’m guessing both of them were mid 40 inch fish. That is the size of fish we were after. We continued to fish and we had a follow and she was pretty hot. We drifted down the spot a little ways and I said lets make one more pass. “Fish on” yeah buddy! Rick did battle and we netted a healthy 38 incher. We snapped some shots and gave a few high fives and back to fishing we went. The next spot I went to was a small rock pile that was holding some fish. We got half way around it and bam a fish nailed my bucktail but no hooks. I couldn’t believe it? What in the world is going on? This was another really nice fish and another lost opportunity. “How do they not get hooks?” we all asked as this has been a question of mine for 15 years of fishing these fish. Onto the next spot and the next and the next with a few more follows. It was almost time for lunch so we moved to one more spot. Dave was throwing a Pacemaker and all of a sudden I hear a huge explosion. “Yes” I thought to myself and as soon as went for the net I noticed it didn’t get hooked. Holy Crimany! The fish was another 46 to 48 inch fish and it never got a hook but managed to put some big chomp marks in the new pacemaker. The muskies were kicking our butts. The score was 1 for us and 4 for them. We had enough and went in for lunch. We met Wayne, Jared, and Toby and they had also lost a fish.

After a huge burger and some fries we hit the water. Rick was up front ready for action casting a bucktail. Not five cast into the first spot I hear him say, “I got one!” I looked up and this fish was doing some huge head shakes and I went for the net. Just as I grab the net you will never believe it.............Gone! She was gone! Your probably thinking by now my hooks weren't sharp. I can tell you they were razor sharp as always. We were pretty bummed at this point but were pumped to have the chances. We continued down the stretch and I look down as a fish was coming up to eat Rick’s bucktail. With the sun and high wind it was really tough to see the fish and as the fish was coming up Rick didn’t see her coming. Bummer! We fished the rest of the day with a few more follows but no takers. We fished hard and were ready for dinner.

Day two it was Rick and Wayne in my boat fishing muskies and Dave and Jared in Toby’s boat fishing walleyes. We were pumped but knew with the weather condition the bite was going to get fairly tough as it was suppose to be flat calm and sunny. We pulled up to the first spot and didn’t have a follow so I said, “Last Cast!” to the boys and as I was putting stuff away Rick said, “I’ve got one!” I look up and this fish was doing some crazy head shakes on top and I knew it was a musky. Rick did battle and we netted Rick’s second musky a 32 incher. Sweet! It wasn’t a monster but a fish in the boat. We fished several of the good spots and didn’t have too many follows or bites like the day before. By this time it was hot and calm on the water and our spirits started to diminish. I told the guys keep casting you never know! We moved to one of my big fish spots. Wayne was throwing the pacemaker that Dave was throwing the day before. As Wayne went into his “L” turn I looked down and here she came. I said, “She’s going to eat, she’s going to eat!” and she did just that right in-front of our noses and the battle was on. Huge head shakes boat side in the flat calm water and then hard runs. While Wayne was doing battle I said, “Turn her head this way!” and the musky said, “I don’t think so” and made several runs. After the long battle we netted a dandy 45 incher. Wayne’s first musky! We took some photos and let her go! The spirits were lifted and we casted hard for the next hour with a bunch of lazy follows except one on Rick’s bait that we thought was going to eat but didn’t. We decided to head back and take a break from the heat and do a little celebrating.

Dave, Jared, Toby and Travis were catching some big walleyes and one really nice pike! We decided to go out for the evening and try and catch a few walleyes and fish by the other crew. We caught a few fish and called it a night.

What a fishing trip! Rick that big one that followed your bait is still lurking waiting for the next time your up

Monday, August 17, 2009

The Boys are in town

I got to spend the morning fishing with my buds Lee Tauchen, Mike Crawford, Brian Truax and Ron Labrosse. I was in Bemidji spending time with my family and couldn’t resist a morning musky trip with all my buds.

It was Lee, Mike and I in one boat and Ron and B.T. in the other. We ended up boating this cute musky!

Thanks boys I had a blast catching up with everyone!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Whitecap Splash Guards

Hey Guys I pumped! I just finished putting my brand new Whitecap Splash Guards on my boat and let me tell you they are a life saver. O.K. maybe not a life saver but they keep me dry!

If you are in the market for splash guards these are the ones you want to put on your boat. Below is some info about why! I will post some better pics soon.....

(From Whitecap’s Website) Click Here for Whitecap Website
* 1/4" virtually unbreakable tinted gray polycarbonate adds a sleek look to your boat and can withstand trailering.
* Whitecap uses die-cut Santoprene thermoplastic rubber; the best rubber available. Santoprene remains flexible in cold weather, has excellent ozone resistance, outstanding durability and flexibility. Santoprene is used in products such as windshield wiper blades.
*Aluminum rivets, along with a solid backing plate, holds the rubber firmly in place.
*Whitecap splashguards remove quickly. Simply remove wingnuts and lift guard out of slots. Slotted and aluminum angle brackets are permanently mounted to boat with stainless steel screws.
*Heavy duty slotted brackets are made out of 3/4" HDPE plastic. Slots are machined 3/4" deep.
*More than a 1/4" between transom and guard allows clearance for transducer cords, bolt and rivet heads. Guards angle out at 7 degrees for boats with extruding gunnel end caps.
*Guards are also available to accommodate Minn-Kota's Vantage troll motor.
* 3 year warranty.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Happy Birthday Kristine

It was my wife, Kristine’s, birthday on August 11th and I asked her what she wanted to do? I was thinking she would want dinner and a movie, a day at the spa, shopping or family day at the beach? She looked at me and said, “We are going fishing!” I have to admit I’m the luckiest guy on the earth. Fishing! My wife said she wanted to go fishing instead of all over all that stuff mentioned above. I was pumped!

Now you need to understand with a new little boy in our relationship she hasn’t been in the boat fishing with me except for a few times up North with Dad/Grandpa Todd when Mom/Grandma Suzanne could babysit Gavin. So she had the itch to catch some fish!

We dropped Gavin off at the new daycare place and Northbound to Leech Lake we headed. We only had a few hours so I had to make them count. I was so pumped to spend the day on the water with Kristine but knew if we didn’t catch fish she would kick my butt!

We pulled up to our first spot and rigged up crawlers on spinner harnesses and started to troll at 1.1 to 1.3 in about 14 to 16 feet of water. I was marking fish but couldn’t get them to bite for the first 15 minutes. It was flat calm and sunny so I was a little worried about catching fish. As we were fishing we were very close to one of my favorite musky spots and I was telling Kristine about some of the fish we caught of the spot. I also told her I left the musky gear at home! She couldn’t believe it but we only had a few hours and I new if I had a musky rod I would have spent some time casting for muskies and again I only had a few hours to figure out these walleyes. I made another pass with only catching a few smaller fish and these fish bite when I was making a turn. They bite on the inside line which means it was going slower. So I slowed the boat down to .8 to 1.0 mph and moved into 11 to 13 feet. We were making our first pass and I saw a musky boat pulling up to the musky spot I was telling Kristine about. I could hear the musky baits clanking and plopping on the water. I then heard the sound of a big head shake and looked over and they had a fish on. Man my heart sank until I looked over and saw one of our rods bent over and I said, “fish!” Kristine fought the fish and I scooped a 27 inch walleye and looked back and saw the other rod bent over and I said, “Another one take it!” It was another hawg and just as I unhooked the first one I netted a second one that was almost identical. What a double! We had a pattern and we continued through out the day catching some real big walleyes including a 28 incher with a total of five fish over the 26 inch mark and several in between. We took pictures of the big ones and let them go. Through out the day we did try trolling cranks and caught a few fish but most of them wanted the slower spinner rig. It was amazing how two feet shallower and .2 mph slower made the difference. If we wouldn’t have changed it could have been a long day on the water.

I should note that Kristine caught all the big walleyes and I caught the rock bass and pike when she let me take the rod. She is a fish catching machine! I should also note I didn’t think once about the musky that was caught only a 100 yards away the whole day. I just enjoyed catching fish with my wife!

Happy Birthday Kristine!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Brothers put on a clinic

On the water again! Sorry I have been a little behind on the updates but we have been rockin’ the fish the past couple of days.

I had another great trip this morning with Kathleen, Mike, 10 year old Jack, 12 year old Bobby and their grandpa Jim. The first two hours I had Kathleen and Mike in the boat. The fish were a little slow waking up but Kathleen managed to catch both a walleye and a bass. Congrats to them as they are getting married in October. I won’t rub it in too bad who caught the most fish…….

Now it was time for the two studs Jack and Bobby and their grandpa Jim. I went back to the same location we had caught the big bass with Hailee the day before and the bite was on. The fish had moved just about 150 yards up the shore. Those guys caught fish left and right. It was so good we didn’t have to move the whole two hours. I got to know my fishing buddies pretty good and we were having a great time. I told Jack if you want to catch a Hawg Belly you have to put a super big minnow on. Fearless Jack was and of coarse he said lets do it. This was a huge minnow and I mean huge. I told Jack if he gets a bite to make sure to give the fish some time to get the whole minnow in its mouth. I should also mention the five-minute warning was starting. (Five minutes until we had to go in.)

I was cleaning the boat and I heard Jack say what every guide likes to hear, “I got one!” I looked up and again it was another monster bass jumping out of the water. Jack fought the fish like a champ and we got em’ in the net and we all cheered as though the Twins won the World Series! We took some great photos and let her go to fight again.

What a blast and thank guys for the great time!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Hailee the Pro

I hope everyone is doing well. I have had some great trips in the past week. The walleyes are starting to bite and of coarse the bass are on fire. We have been fishing mostly deep weed edges and some of those weed edges are normal spring locations in the past years but not this year. Most of the fish have been around 13 to 15 feet of water.

I had the pleasure of spending the day with Monte, Penny and new fishing pro Hailee who is 10 years old. We had a great trip! We started out fishing a mid lake hump that has a ton of good weeds around the edge and caught some walleyes and bass. We were fishing with Bigtooth Flourcarbon Snells tipped with a tasty red tail minnow. After catching a few fish we decided to go to a shoreline spot where a school of walleyes have been hanging out. We caught a few fish but it wasn’t gangbusters and before we knew it time was up.

Hailee had started catching some fish so I told her she had five minutes to catch a fish. If she doesn’t catch a fish within those five minutes we had to go in. I also explained that if she caught a fish it would add another five minutes onto the clock. Well, one hour later we were still fishing. I couldn’t believe it the girl was on fire and I think I was having more fun watch her catch fish then she was catching them. I was fixing a rod when Hailee said, “I got one!” I looked up as this monster bass was jumping out of the water. I grabbed the Beckman and scooped a huge bucket mouth. We gave some high fives, took some photos, and Hailee let the big bass go so some other lucky angler could have a chance at catching it later. We decided to end it on that fish as we were all pretty worn out from the excitement.

Thanks guys I had a blast!