|Bog Labrador Tea blooms early June|
With the rain comes another staple of NW Ontario, the mosquito. All was quite on the bug front until last Saturday. Add to your packing list: a can of bug spray of choice, mosquito coils and a head net if you plan on portaging or walking through the woods to keep the little pests at bay.
|Sunset flight in XZK|
The fishing has been superb the past seven days. South and West Lake led the camps notching a pair of monster 44" pike. South Lake also had the biggest walleye at 27.5". According to the guests, the passing cold front I mentioned early hasn't deterred the walleye bite. They have been aggressive the past several days, even with the water temperature dropping back to the high 50's and low 60's. The guests at Central mentioned they had trouble locating walleye small enough for dinner (remember you can only keep walleye under 18"). This means the big females are back in the shallows hungry and feeding. As mentioned in the previous blog, the majority of the walleye are still shallow and hanging around mud flats or rapids. You typically do not have to venture deeper than 6-8 feet of water and in most cases you'll find fish as shallow at three feet. Small jigs and small crank baits still your ace in the hole for walleye. 1/8 or 1/4 oz jigs with three inch tails (white, yellow, flouro orange, pink or pumpkinseed). Perch, fire tiger, or chartreuse Hot N Tots and Shad Raps have been hot crank baits.
Numerous 40+" pike have been boated photo'd and released the past week. The hot lure....a jig, go figure. Never fails, the biggest northern pike of the year are always caught on a jig while walleye fishing. However, some of the big girls are falling for more traditional lures like the Johnson silver minnow, shallow mini bull dawgs and Mepps Musky killers. The pike are relating in close proximity to walleye. Find a school of walleye in the mud flats this time of year and you'll find a big pike nearby. Many walleye have been hammered at the boat by northerns this week. One fish was even so determined it leapt two feet out of the water to steal a walleye right off a guests hook at Central Lake. Scout shallow bays and areas adjacent to rapids or creeks for trophy fish. Weed growth is continuing as typical with some shallow bays sporting a few lily pads already.
Next week will bring the longest days of the year; which means more time on the water for everyone. Good luck to everyone on the water!