Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Big Hook Fishing Report

It simply amazes me how much the weather can differ from year to year.  Last year at this time we were begging for rain and cooler temperatures.  The temperatures were so warm I was living in the lake to stay cool.  This year thus far I have camped in the sauna for my warmth.  I am exaggerating of course, the temperatures have not been that cold but there certainly hasn't been much in regards to a heat wave.  Cloudy skies and rain have dominated this week.

Last Saturday we received 3-5" of rain.  12 hours straight of heavy downpour has caused the lake levels to skyrocket.  I advise fisherman to use caution navigating the water ways.  The high water has now hidden numerous reefs.  A plus side of the high water is the raging current at the numerous rapids.  Fish have corralled themselves in the current chasing smaller bait fish.

The narrows on the north end of the lake is flowing fast.  The result is, thousands of fish camped below.  I had the chance to talk with the guests yesterday and they were all smiles.  A 41" pike and 27" walleye were boated and released on Tuesday.  The guests grinned and claimed the numbers were a little low.   That morning they boated 60 fish between the two, hmmmmm high standards?  The perch have been a little difficult to locate with the rising water.  I would recommend locating wind blown weed beds and tossing beetlespins.
The numbers of fish are down so far this week, however the size is up.  A 43" pike tops the list so far.  Several 40", 39" and 36" have also been boated and released.  Trolling crankbaits along weed lines have brought sizable walleye into the boat.  Yesterday I guided two gentlemen on the West end.  We trolled past Husker Rock 6 times and boated 12 eyes between 18-23".  A Chartreuse #5 Shad Rap was the hot lure.  We tried every other color combination in the box and the chartreuse/white beat them all 2 to 1.  The west portage was extremely muddy due to some blowing winds the previous day.  We still managed to boat a fat 38.5" pike and a feisty 35".  The north narrows have also been impressive, giving up the majority of the trophy pike this week.  The current guests have been throwing mostly doctor spoons for the big pike.
The high water has guests struggling to get up the second set of rapids.  The amount of current has been to strong.  A couple of guys pull the boat around the beaver damn to access the Sagawitcheawn River.  Several  nice pike have been boated just off the Eagles Nest weed bed north east of the camp.  As usual, the rapids is producing large amounts of fish.
Lemonade is self explanatory: put jig in water and retrieve fish.  Just about everywhere in the lake has been producing fish.  A favorite spot for the guests this week has been the West side of the island.  As for Favorable, the winds the past couple of day have hampered the fishing a tad.  Pike alley produced some 35"-40" fish.  Walleye point has plenty of walleye milling about.  Trolling an orange 10' diving crankbait along the shore adjacent to the dock is killer. You certainly don't have to wander far to catch fish.
The guests chalked up two impressive 29" walleye along with a 42" and 39" pike. Trolling Hot N Tot's was the method of choice for catching the big walleye.  Big fish are still surprisingly shallow.  Trolling 8-10 ft weed lines and mud flats with Shad Raps is one of my favorite ways to boat big fish.  Jigging rocky points is getting more and more productive as the season progresses.
The lake known as the "walleye factory" has been producing some large pike over the past several days.  Guests have been focusing their attention on the east arm of the lake for walleye and have been pleasantly surprised with some large pike.  The large mud/weed flat east of the camp has been hands down the most productive spot in the lake thus far.  A couple adventurous guests made the long run all the way to the outgoing falls.  They boated tons of fish above and decided to see what the bottom of the rapids offered.  After a brush battled walk (there is no beaten path to the bottom of the falls), another ton of fish was caught from shore.  
The guests last week touted 60 pike between 34-43".  Most of the fish were boated in the fish bowl.  Several were caught just over the east portage, in the bay adjacent to the boat launch.  I chatted with the current guests on Monday, they had already boated and released a 42" and 41" pike along with a chunky 27" walleye.   The guests noted the Horseshoe has been quite the productive spot.

Hot Lures
Pike:  Johnson Silver Minnow with a twister trailer, Mepps Agila #5,  Five of Diamonds, Silver doctor spoon
Walleye:  Jig white head/yellow body (3" twister), Shad Rap Chartreuse/white #5,  rattle trap silver/blue, actually most color combinations for jigs have been effective.  1/4 oz or 3/8 are best sizes for jig heads.  

Remember to email some pics so I can post them to the blog! Good luck on the water everyone,

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Week in Review

The cool weather certainly hasn't deterred the fish from biting.  All the camps are reporting excellent fishing despite cool temperatures. Last week (June 2nd-9th) brought warm sunny days that elevated the water temperatures into the mid sixties.  This warming trend kicked off a feeding frenzy in the fish that has carried over into this week.

As mentioned before, the past two days have been windy and cool with scattered showers and *gasp* snow.  Believe it or not, but we experienced about an hour of snow showers yesterday.  The fish however didn't seem to mind.  Most fish are still holding in the the shallows and in the current.  Few have migrated out to the rock points but the bulk of the schools are still holding in the shallow muddy bays.

The positive about cool weather is the lack of bugs.  I haven't witnessed a mosquito or black fly for several days. The bugs were sporty last week in the warm weather.  The black flies were driving moose into the water for great photo ops.  On a side note, we have been experiencing an amazing amount of swan sightings here in the north country.  Pairs of swans are now camped out on just about every lake.  Swans are very uncommon in this area. 

An eagle takes flight at Central. 
The perch have been active in the shallow bays where the cabbage weeds have been sprouting.  The narrows exiting into the north end of the lake has been exciting.  Thousands of fish are schooled below the moving water.
A south wind will bring huge walleye into Husker Rock on the west end this time of year.  Trolling shallow crankbaits like Shad Raps and Reef Runners along the rock and adjacent weedbed will boat a trophy.  The east rapids has produced several trophy pike already this week.
Everything is about the rapids right now at Cocos. Thousands of fish are schooled below both sets.  The water levels have dropped and shooting the rapids is more manageable now.  Shallow bays and creeks in the Sagawithewan river has been excellent for pike.  Fish patterns are holding to shallow wind swept bays.  Cocos has plenty to offer just start casting, if you find nothing within 10 minutes, motor over to the next bay.
Lemonade continues to impress all the fisherman with the amazing walleye fishery.  Guests this week have been focusing on the sauger and perch also in Lemonade.  Favourable has been producing excellent walleye off of Walleye Point.  Hole in the wall has held some pike in the 40" range.
Loon's on South lake. 
The big female walleye have been striking on trolled crankbaits this week.  The Rapala Original F18, Rattle Traps and Hot N Tots all have been boating some impressive fish.  Fish are still rather shallow.  Trolling the fresh sprouting weed lines is a great technique to boat those trophy fish.
The east arm of the lake has been electric. Chatted with two guests today and they boated close to 300 fish in one day.  Small jigs with yellow tails have been the bee's knees.  Trolling along the expansive flats is a great way to locate the schools.  One of my favorite spots this time of year is the tiny island just to the west of the camp.  You don't have to travel far in this lake to catch fish.
The "Fish Bowl" has been hot.  Focusing on the windy bays seems to be the tactic for finding the big pike.
The walleye have been mixed into the same areas and fisherman are connecting with large walleye while angling for pike.  The weeds are growing slowly but are holding fish.  The north end of the lake has yet to produce much for quality fish yet.  A little sunshine will change that quickly.

Good luck on the water everyone!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Here fishy, fishy!

Funny, it is June 6th and I can finally write a fishing report not mentioning snow.  Hot humid days have set upon us in the Opasquia Provincial Park.  The past four days have peaked in the low 80's with scattered thunderstorms developing in the afternoon.  The good news is, the warm temperatures in NW Ontario over the past five days have driven the fish into feeding frenzies.  The bad news with warm temperatures and plenty of moisture...that's right you guessed flies and mosquito's.  The bugs during the day time have been minimal, however once the sun starts to set (which is around 10 pm) and the wind calms, the buzzing begins.  Advice, bring some bugs spray for the evening hours.

Okay, back to the good news. Water temperatures have risen on average around 12 degrees.  At the beginning of the week I recorded temperatures on Central hovering around 50 degrees.  Today, (June 6th) temperatures off the dock were grasping the 63 degree mark.  The warmer water has the weeds beginning to pop.

The walleye are holding in two locations, wherever current is present and mud flats.  According to most of the outposts, only some fish are scattered on rocky points.  6-8' is the optimal depth for located walleye.  Small jigs 1/4 oz with 3" tails have been most effective for fish.

Most pike are holding in the same locations as walleye.  Warm sunny bays and rapids have been producing trophy fish. Bucktail spinners and twitching Rapala's have been excellent lures for catching toothy trophies.

The final touches were applied to Burnt this week.  Some final trim was placed around the doors and hand rails for the steps was installed.  Corey, Tyrol and myself spent a day constructing new boat ramps.  The cabin looks great and is ready for the 2012 season.  We attempted fishing one evening, however we only had one fishing rod.  With a little engineering, Tyrol boated 19 fish with some fishing line attached to a section of PEX water line and a jig.  He was the provider of our dinner in a matter minutes.
The East and West rapids have been the go to walleye locations. Several large 36"+ pike have been boated and released while jigging throughout the area.  The extreme north end of the lake has produced ample amounts of walleye.  For guests that are willing to portage, the East Rapids has been hot for walleye. Be prepared to get your feet wet with the high waters flowing over the rapids.
One word: rapids.  Guests could sit below the rapids and catch fish until their hands turned raw. A number of 22-28" walleye have been photo'd and released this week.  For those that want to explore, above the north rapids has produced plenty of fish.  The shallow bays adjacent to camp have been holding an amazing amount of fish. As of today, the second set of rapids is sporty for shooting.  The rising water has made it difficult for guests to navigate up to the Sagawitchewan river.  A week without rain should lower the water levels enough.
Guests at South have had great luck on the north end of the lake the past couple of days.  Jigging the windy shoreline has been a favorite technique.  As usual, the narrows to the south of the camp is hot.  Not many pike have been reported.
A simple lake for a fishing report.  The fish have been caught everywhere.  Off the dock, across the the lake, you name the spot and the guests claim fish were holding there. Lots and lots of walleye.
I chatted with the guests on Monday.  They reported Favorable was on the slow side for fishing, however they admitted to focusing more on Lemonade Lake.  In one day four guests claimed boating and releasing 500 fish, wow!  Most were walleye, however lots of jumbo perch were caught along with sauger. They were planning on fishing Favorable more later in the week.  This time of year, when the water temperatures are below 65 degrees.  I like to focus on the creeks in the south arm of Favorable.  Pike alley will be a go to spot as soon as the weeds start popping.  Several Merlin birds have set up their nest around the cabins and have been providing plenty of entertainment for the guests.
A 44" West Lake monster pike. 
I talked with the guests today and fishing has been explosive in the Fish Bowl (southern end of the lake).  Plenty of 36"+ pike have been boated and released.  Two guests last week boated and released a 44" and a 41" fish along with 30 fish between 30" and 40", most located in the Fish Bowl.  Jigging about 400 yards back from the east rapids has been a great way to catch walleye.

Good luck on the water everyone,