Monday, June 24, 2013

June 15th-22nd Report

Our continuous east wind is still prevalent here in the north country.  However, the old saying "Wind from the east; fishing is the least" is being thwarted.  Fisherman over the past week have raved about the fishing.  Some big fish were caught last week however, the staggering numbers reported showed fish were in full feeding mode. For example, the guests at Lemonade/Favourable boasted an impressive total of 2891 walleye for the week.  They chose not to count the pike because they were slimy.

Summer is in full swing, todays (june 23) temperatures peaked at 84 degrees. Water temperatures are steadily climbing into the mid sixties.  Once our water temps start flirting with the seventies we have to be on the lookout for the dreaded mayflies.  As of right now no sightings have been made.  Unfortunately, plenty of mosquito sighting have been reported. So as a helpful suggestion, bring bug spray and mosquito coils to keep the annoying insects at bay.

Weeds are starting to develop in most lakes but are far from mature.  Lilly pads are flowering, enticing moose into the shallow bays for great photo opportunities.


The climbing water temperatures have started to affect the walleye; as they are starting to hold on rock piles and wind blown points.  Plenty of fish can still be caught on mud flats and immature weed beds.  Most fish are still found in around 6-8 ft of water.  Trolling Hot N Tot's along windblown shorelines was a productive technique on Central Lake.  Some guests reported bigger fish staging on mud flats as the sun begins to set.

Hot lures:
Hot N Tot (blue/silver)
1/4 jig blaze orange with black tail
Reef Runner Lil Ripper shallow diver crystal


Pike are still wandering throughout most of the lake searching for weed beds to stage in.  Most fish are still chasing walleye in current and along mud flats.  My favorite tactic for pike this time of year is fishing the windiest muddy bay I can find on an overcast day.  Yes it is tough to hold the boat but one big fish makes it worth it. Tossing glide baits this time of year in the shallow mud can provide some amazing strikes from pike.  Utilizing a different approach, guests at Central had plenty of success with a fly rod for big pike around rapids.  Casting 4-6" streamers produced a 41", 37" and 35" fish standing on shore below the north rapids.

Hot Lures:
Johnson Silver Minnow
Bomber Long A White
Bucktail #8 colorado blade Black/Orange

Good luck on the water everyone! Start sending us some pictures of your latest Big Hook trip and I'll post them on the blog.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

June 8-15th Report

Summer will soon be upon us in the Opasquia Provincial Park.  Signs of summer are everywhere: deciduous trees have fully regained their foliage, dandelions now cover most lawns and unfortunately the mosquitos have taken flight.  Just last week clouds of pollen were so thick most people thought forest fires had begun.  However, there is an old saying up here in the north country, "When the pollen flies, the fishing gets good."


An east wind with warm temperatures has dominated for the past five days.  Such a prolonged easterly breeze is an unusual weather pattern for us here in the Opasquia Provincial park and it has caused some interesting fishing patterns. I can't even remember the last time we experienced a west wind. Temperatures have been stable "ish" for us here in the great white north.  I say "ish" because as north as we are, the weather can turn in a heartbeat.  The pleasant weather has heated the water temperature to an average of about 63 degrees.  Low 70's are forecasted for the week ahead with moderate sun.


Weeds have begun to pop in some of the shallow bays but are far from mature.  Some pike are starting to hold in these premature weed beds.  As the weeds keep growing the pike will continue to migrate into these areas.  Most big fish boated last week were still in warm shallow muddy bays.

Walleye are still really shallow chasing baitfish throughout bays.  They are also holding in current.  Stick to depths around 8 ft.

The narrows north of the camp was the hotspot last week and should continue to produce well into July.  Jigging here is the method of choice for catching plenty of walleye.  Moose creek held plenty of pike.  The narrows leading northbound held some scattered perch.

Above the north rapids produced numerous 40" pike over the course of the week.  All the portages, with the exception of the north, held lots of fish. For some reason fish were not present below the north falls, I blame the east wind causing the unusual fishing patterns. South narrows were holding lots of walleye late in the day as they moved into the mudflats before evening.   

A 43" and 41" pike were boated on the last day of the guests vacation last week.  Talk about going out with a bang! The water has dropped considerably over the last week and guests should now finally be able to navigate both rapids. Bays adjacent to the cabin were producing a surprising amount of walleye.  Fishing just off the flowage from the rapids was consistent.

Lemonade was producing plenty of walleye on the west side of the island.  Ample amounts of perch were holding on the west shoreline along the weeds.  One of my favorite spots is still 100 ft off the dock. Favourable's hot spots were in Pike Alley, and numerous creeks flowing into the big arm of the lake.

Five fish over 40" were boated and released last week.  The horseshoe was the hottest area of all, holding plenty of both species. The narrows to the Fish Bowl began to get active as the week progressed.


Guests found best success to the east of the camp.  The large mudflat/weedbed about one mile east of camp was a mainstay the entire week.  Trolling or casting along this large area produced great results.  The guests also commented that they enjoyed a perch dinner just about every night.

The narrows just southeast of camp was a go to spot.  The hook near the portage was also hot. A 27" was the biggest walleye for the week and lost of 20+" fish were boated and released. As mentioned before all fish are still rather shallow, but getting more and more active as the week progressed.

Hot Lures

1/4 jig with white gulp tail
Hot N Tot
Lazy Ike

Perch Shad Rap #5
Doctor Spoon Silver
Mepps Agila #5
Hell Hound

Good luck on the water everyone.

Sunday, June 9, 2013


Finally, Internet has returned to Big Hook.   After three weeks of living in the stone ages, i.e. flying to Sandy Lake in order to send an email, we again have service.  Three weeks of begging and pleading service technicians to make the long trip into the bush fell on deaf ears only with the technicians deciding to cancel at the last minute.  Fed up, Dad and I took matters into our own hands and remounted the satellite dish that was knocked awry from the snow.  After inching the dish left/right and north/south for what seemed like days, we painstakingly found a lock on the satellite.

What's happening with camp you ask? The massive snowfall from the winter skyrocketed the lake levels across the whole Opasquia Park.  We arrived to record high water levels at Central.  Water was up past the fish shed and had removed our main dock from the cribbing. Since our arrival the water has dropped considerably and current lake levels are slightly higher than normal. However, Cocos Lake remains high, as all the water in the park is still exiting through the double rapids.  The guests still have not been able to shoot the rapids into the Sagawitchewan river at Cocos. However, as the water returns to normal, the flow should become more navigable very shortly.

The weather has been absolutely gorgeous over the past 6 days, almost too nice.  Sunny 70 degree days have dominated the forecast and even peaked at 84 today.  A little rain would be appreciated just to keep the boreal forest saturated.
Central Lake 41" 

Now, it is time to talk about the important topics, like fishing of course.  Without too much backstory, the late ice out has altered fishing patterns slightly.  Just late last week we were experiencing post spawn activity from walleye, they are now getting hungry.  The pike fishing has been lights out amazing (to be discussed later). As a whole, fish are chasing bait fish on shallow mud flats and in current.  Weed beds are nonexistent, but we may see some green beginning over the next week as water temperatures rise.  With a little searching you can find 63 degrees in shallow bays.


As mentioned before, the walleye have spawned and have regained their appetites. Lots of fish can be found in sunny wind swept bays with mud bottoms.  The mud bays are heating so much faster than the rest of the lakes and hoards of minnows are clogging the warm waters.  Hot lures in mud are small jigs (1/4 oz) with twisters, along with floating shallow diving crankbaits.  A personal favorite is the Rapala F18 (firetiger) and slow twitch it for the bigger fish. Apart from the mudflats, plenty of fish are returning to the rapids since spawning.  There hasn't been much success yet on rock piles.  As the lakes heat over the next couple of days fish will begin to move out into the main lakes.


Pike have been on a feeding frenzy over the last ten days.  Every spot guests at Central fished were overrun with pike.  Fish have been tagging just about every bait thrown.  Popular lures have been smaller Daredevil spoons along with spinner baits.  Anything you can move slower and keep relatively shallow.  Since there are no developed weed beds this time of year the walleye and pike go hand in hand. Where you find one you will generally find the other species nearby.

Good luck on the water everyone!
It is great to be blogging again,