rod tip

Koketrout 1
Posted on March 29, 2012 by

Two Holes… One Trout!

The fishing game is one that is occasionally disrupted by strange and fantastical moments. In ice fishing these moments are truly amplified by the fact that all you are looking at is a dark hole into the deep abyss with little or no knowledge of the happenings below.

In a recent trip to Lake Rosseau, my friends and I had the pleasure of having one of these tall tales unfold before us on one sunny day in February. After a decent morning of catching smaller lake trout, suddenly my eye was caught by my friend’s fishing rod doubled over with his drag blasting off line. I sprang over with my video camera and frantically filmed as he fought the beast over several deep runs. Eventually the trout tired but when it arrived at the hole it was both sideways and tangled in the line. There we stood staring down the hole seeing only the fat spotty belly, pondering how to pull the fish through the ice. It was a pause one moment too long! With one weighty thrash the trout pulled the line to the edge of the hole and snapped off. We helplessly watched as it slowly dove back into the depths with my friend’s lure. We were excited by the fight but disappointed by the loss.

We reserved to resume our fishing and we each returned to our respective holes mumbling about how awesome that would have been to land that fish. Minutes passed when suddenly I felt my rod tip drop. “Fish On!”, I screeched. I could tell the fish was heavy but the fight was short. As it rose to the hole I was stunned by the sight of my buddy’s lure dangling from its lips. Its head turned into the hole and its face poked from the icy water just as my line snapped on his teeth. Panicking as it began to sink back into the hole, I grabbed the fish on the tip of the jaw with its sharp teeth digging into my fingers. “Go ahead and bite me!” I thought, “We can’t lose this fish twice!” I hauled the fish onto the ice and began to scream like I had won the lottery. We removed my friend’s lure, took a few pictures and sent the fish home to the depths. I have had a fish bite the same lure twice but this was something else. Our holes were nearly 50 feet away from each other and several minutes passed between hookings. The fish was maybe about 10 pounds. It wasn’t a monster as far as Lakers are concerned, but it was a legend that day.

Posted on February 17, 2011 by

Opening Week Musky Hunting

As most fishermen know, opening week of your favorite species is a very special one. As a Musky fisherman in southern Ontario, my wait begins as most people are starting their Christmas shopping. The six month wait from mid-November to the first Saturday in June seems to take forever. That’s why I book opening week off work, every year since 2004, coincidentally my first year as a boat owner. That way, after six long months of planning strategies, sharpening hooks & reading articles about Muskies, I can choose the perfect days to fish, & rest on the stormy days.

On the Thursday of opening week, my brother and I were fishing an area that consists of a giant weed flat, a couple of football fields in size. We’d caught & released three Muskies, Mike had two and I had just one dinker to show from six hours of casting big baits. My back was starting to ache, so I switched up to a small 1/2 oz spinner bait, one normally used to catch Bass. Under usual circumstances, this is a good idea, but at this time of year, Bass are in full-spawn mode and will attack anything that comes near their nest.

As we were drifting across the 5-foot deep flat, we came up on a hump that we could clearly see Bass spawning on, so I waited until I could see the weed edge and I tossed out the spinnerbait. I burned it across the weed-tops until it reached the edge, let it drop for a second and re-engaged the reel to bring it up the hump. Just as the blades stopped fluttering and it was almost out of the water, the Muskie came sauntering out of the weeds like it owned the place. I had enough time to realize what was happening and alert my brother with a quick “HEY!”.

The fish grabbed the spinnerbait and immediately started thrashing, basically setting the hook itself! The fight was a short one, as I was able to keep it from jumping by keeping my rod-tip low, and an excellent net-job by my brother.

The fish was a chunky one measuring in at a respectable 44″. Right after the release shot was taken, Mike switched the camera to video & filmed her swimming away strong, to fight another day.

– Musky Bill

Bill, thank you very much for you entry into our 2010 Contributor Contest and boy what a beautiful musky! You have taken THIRD PLACE in our contest and will receive 3 custom lures from Rockstar Lures (which I believe you’re already very familiar with) as well as a copy of Fins & Skins magazine!