Thursday, December 31, 2009

Remembering Big Hook 2009

Let us take a brief look back at Big Hook's 2009 season.


Year in and out Big Hook Wilderness Camps faces many challenges as Ontario's most remote outpost fishing resort. As a fly-in outfitter, Mother Nature has always been our biggest competitor. Some years she cooperates more than others, blessing us with blue skies and calm waters. However, in 2009 Mother Nature was quite defiant. May started out cool and with a later than usual ice out. The ice departed from the shores of Central Lake around the 13th of May. Typical ice out usually lands around the 4th-8th of May. The last lake free of ice in 2009 was Cocos around the 1st of June. June remained cool and blasted us with an ice storm in the first week, our poor air plane was covered with over an 1/2" of ice. Also, an unexpected snow storm on the 11th was another surprise Mother Nature had up our sleeve for us. July brought us gray skies and a late May Fly hatch, which occurred in the third week of the month. Mother Nature saved her best weather in 2009 for the last couple weeks of August and the month of September. Unseasonably warm, September 2009 was one of the nicest on records, providing us with several weeks of 70+ degree days.
The cool summer of 2009 didn't affect the fishing, it just altered the hot spots. The dark skies actually helped produce some of the bigger fish (on average) that Big Hook has recorded. In my experience, dark skies have always aided the fisherman in catching the elusive trophy walleye and pike. The cool temperatures of the spring held the fish in shallower waters up until the beginning of August. Typically, walleye begin descending mid July to depths of 15'+.
The water levels throughout the park remained a little higher than in past years. The flowages and rapids were pushing more water. The higher volume of water flowing throughout the Opasquia Provincial Park attracted more fish to the highly oxygenated areas.
We accomplished several projects in the 2009 season. The new solar systems at Burnt, South, Southwest and Cocos were fine tuned. Each of the previously mentioned lakes also were equipped an efficient electric freezer. South Lake saw several improvements starting with a new porch. We then replaced the majority of the propane appliances with electric. A new refrigerator, freezer and lights were installed and powered with an incredibly quiet Honda 2000W generator. Also at South Lake, Yamaha 4 stroke motors replaced our 2 cycle Mercury's. The new Yamaha's thus far have received rave reviews.
Two cabins at Central Lake were updated with metal roofs. Also, a new floating dock was built.
We have several projects were are looking to tackle in 2010. New docks at West, South and Cocos are just to name a few.

Big Hook Wilderness Camps wishes the best for everyone in 2010 and we look forward to seeing you in the up and coming summer months.
-The Hartle Family
Steve, Evie, Ricky and Nathan

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Happy Holidays!

We would like to extend our grateful thanks to everyone who has joined us as a guest and friend at Big Hook Wilderness Camps. Happy Holidays from the Hartle family. We wish you a safe and wonderful Holiday season.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Info on new HST tax in Canada

Many of you have asked what will happen to the GST rebate that many of our guests receive under the Foreign Convention and Tour Incentive Program when the harmonized sales tax takes effect. We have received confirmation from provincial officials that the rebate guests receive will be half of the 13% harmonized tax or 6.5%. There had been some initial concern that the rebate would apply to the federal portion of the tax only.

We are also continuing to urge provincial officials to lobby the federal government for a return to the old, more flexible visitor rebate program. We don't know how this effort is going at the moment, but we will keep pushing on your behalf.

Although it is still possible for details to change as the legislation is passed and the regulations drafted, it appears at this point that we can count on a 6.5% rebate for guests who qualify under the program. We will provide further updates as new information becomes available.

Steve Hartle

Big Hook Wilderness Camps

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Big Hook Bowl Pick'em

Join us in this years Big Hook College Bowl Pick'em. Compete against other fisherman from throughout the USA. Top three places win great prizes. Good luck everyone!

Group ID#: 26489
Password: bighook

Happy Holidays from Steve, Evie & Nathan
Big Hook Wilderness Camps

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Christmas Deals

I have done a fair amount of surfing the internet for some blockbuster fishing deals this holiday season. However, I have been ultimately disappointed with fishing tackle manufacturers unwillingness to lower prices this Christmas season. Major brands such as Shimano and Quantum have discounted some lower end reels and rods but I have not noticed any great buys.
Understand, though, it really isn't the fishing season, well...other than ice fishing.

On the other hand, I just noticed Cabelas is offering $20 off purchases of $100 or more.
Visit for more details. They currently offering 25 days of deals so I would suggest visiting their often if you are really hunting out a good combo for the 2010 season. Also, their bargain cave every now and again will hold some fishing treasures also.

Other retail giant Gander Mountain, has marked down spools of 300 yd moss green Power Pro for $22.99 and free shipping. Those of you who have fished with braided line knows it usually will run more than $30. Visit:
for more details. They are also marking down several of their store brand rods and reels, which personally I am not very keen on.

For Bass Pro current holiday offers visit:

I also suggest visiting your local tackle store for great bargains. The little guys are more willing to negotiate combo offers.

I'll keep my eyes on the Internet and if I find any door busting deals I'll keep you posted.

Happy Holidays everyone!
Big Hook Camps