Last week we left on our annual Canadian fishing trip. This year we ventured up to Eagle Lake in Northwest Ontario. Our main quest as usual was the elusive Muskie. This would be the latest in the year we've traveled to Canada so weather wise we were sure it would get interesting...and it did!
We started the first day off right! The first morning of the trip I landed a 46" Muskie on a perch colored jointed Bucher Depth Raider. She was positioned off a small rock island and ate the depth raider right at the boat, making for an exciting fight.
The rest of the day was pretty uneventful with some small pike and a few lazy muskie follows. This was not surprising considering the bright sunny windless day.
Day two brought us a nice Canadian windstorm.......typical 20-30mph stuff, but bright and sunny once again. Around mid day my father caught a 43" muskie on a figure eight at the boat. The muskie came in hot behind a red and black Double Cowgirl and smoked the bait on his first turn. It was an awesome boat side strike followed by lots of white water and high fives!
After that we fished from 12:30pm until 6:30 pm without seeing so much as another muskie, not cool. Finally at 6:30 my Dad had a follow on the same red and black Double Cowgirl. 1/2 hour later we went back to try the fish again and I got him to eat an altered black and orange Helidawg. He ended up being a fat 41"er.
Fishing so far in the week had been tough but the fish we did see meant business.
So pretty much imagine the worst weather ever....well that was day three. We had sustained 25-30mph wind, 45degrees and driving rain. Of course that didn't stop us and we fished from about 10:30am until dark, straight no lunch. We tried a little of everything and the ski's were not interested in our offerings, we saw a couple but no takers. My brother saw a giant well over 50", but was unable to convert. So our best fish of the day was a really fat 36" pike that ate the lucky red/black Double Cowgirl.
Cold...was the word of the day. Fall has officially set in up in Canada. The air temp was in the 40's all day with the water temp starting to fall into the high 50's. The dreaded fall turnover has pretty much occurred. This has of course irritated the Muskies into being ridiculously lethargic and picky. During the first part of the the day not a muskie was seen. Around one we switched gears and went after some walleyes. Our first spot we picked ended up giving out some great action...nothing huge all 13-17"fish but we caught 15-20 of them in a little over an hour. The Walleyes we found were deep, 36-42ft. We caught all of them on Lindy rigs using minnows with tight 1ft leaders. We kept six to enjoy for dinner.
After the Walleye fest we went back to chasing ski's. Almost immediately an absolute giant 52-55", 40+# monster followed in my brothers black and orange Helidawg. She went around five times in the figure eight swiping at the bait twice. It was crazy to watch in gin clear water with no wind, unreal. After that we hit up another spot before returning to see if we could get her to eat at dark. Right away she came chasing in my Walleye colored "pounder" Bulldawg. Once again she went multiple times around in the figure eight but wouldn't commit. It was an awesome awesome fish major knee shaker since it was closer to the size of an alligator then a fish. After that we saw one other ski, around a 4 footer, again on a Bulldawg right at dark.
Today we went with one of the camp guides after the mighty Lake Trout. We fished a small lake that is connected to Eagle Lake via the craziest hairpin curve creek in the universe. For four miles we made our way over beaver dams, navigating our way through a three foot deep creek full of old growth timber. It was quite the adventure just making it to the lake itself!
After the creek we ended up on a fairly large totally remote lake. We pulled up at the Lake Trout hole and dropped down Lindy Viking jigging spoons and Kastmaster's. My brother had one on before it even hit the bottom!
Fishing was crazy for the first hour we were there. We caught odd fish too including a couple of jumbo Whitefish, and my Dad caught a pretty darn large Burbot.
All totaled we caught eight Lake Trout between three and ten pounds, two Whitefish and a Burbot. The fish were coming up from 90ft of water and the fight was great, we lost more then we caught.
On our final day we decided to bust out all the stops and get another Muskie! The night before we picked up four large suckers, and would use them as toss back baits and drag one behind the boat. Our first stop of the day we dropped down "Monica" the sucker and within five minutes the reels drag started peeling out line. My brother reared back and set the hook into a musky that fought like a bull dog flat head catfish. She ended up being a 42" Muskie that was nearly as fat around as it was long, probably a 25# fish.
After that we had no more action other then a few Northerns.
The weather was awful again blowing 25-35mph with rain and about 45 degrees just like on day three. The pleasant weather made us call it a day early and head back to the cabin to warm up!
Overall it was a great trip with good company. No giants this year, but we caught four nice muskies and numerous other fish under tough conditions and had a blast doing it!