Friday, August 16, 2013

A Beginners Guide to Portaging a Shower

Here in the north country logistical issues arise daily.  Getting Item A to Point B isn't as simple as placing it in a car and driving down the road.  Since we lack cars and roads in the area, we must focus on solving our transportation issues with airplanes and boats.  Yesterdays issue was getting lumber for a new shower addition from Central Lake to our South Lake outpost. Problem: 4' x 8' sheets of plywood do not fit into our 185 Cessna and are difficult/dangerous to externally load.  My proposed solution: transport the plywood via 12+ miles of waterways and carry the lumber plus boat/motor over three portages.  After some debate (actually very little at all) we eventually decided we didn't want to charter an airplane for six sheets of plywood.  So, I give you a beginners guide to portaging a shower.

Step #1: Find a strong back.
You are going to lift, haul, push, pull and struggle 100's of pounds over various terrain and numerous portages. Tyrol and I are the young bucks here at Big Hook and gladly accepted the challenge.  Well...I kinda had to go since it was my idea.
Ty properly demonstrates proper plywood carrying technique.
Next came pulling the boat and carrying the motor/gas.
 Step #2: Bring a guard dog.  Who knows what you will run across when portaging?

Shadow carefully approves of the boat load

We didn't encounter much wildlife but did see signs of bear on one portage.  Shadow made sure the rabid squirrels stayed up in the trees.

Step #3: Enjoy the scenery.
One of three waterfalls we came across.

The Central/South Lake riverway is an incredibly scenic boat ride with multiple twists and turns, waterfalls, and stunning views.

Step #4: Take a break to catch a fish or two along the way. By far the most important in my book.
A man's gotta fish. 

Below is one of the many 30+" fish we boated after we had delivered the shower materials to South.

There you have it an easy beginners guide to portaging a shower.

A quick fishing report.

This week was warm, still and dry. Daily high temperatures ranged from 70 to 88 degrees.  The majority of the week was dominated with a high pressure system. The fish responded kindly to the weather stability.  No rain all week means the water levels did drop but just a fraction of an inch.  Lake levels at Cocos, Burnt and Central are probably the lowest in at least 15 years.

The magic number for walleye was 20.  20 feet was the depth where most fish were found all week long. Jigging rock piles/points and mid lake humps was by far the most effective technique for finding schools.   Last night pink jigs with a 3/8 oz black head was dominant at Central.

For pike the name of the game is Weeds.  Find a weed bed close to deep water and you'll find a big pike.  Guests have been pulling bucktails through thick weeds and having great results.  Last night I casually tossed a Hell Hound while mom jigged for walleye and was surprised to see pike holding on rocky points.  Most nights have been still and calm, which means top water has been a ball.

Good luck on the water everyone.

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