The highlight of the trip was when my wife Kelly caught her first fish of the day, and it was a pretty good one too, 14+ LMB, I'm about 100 feet away as she is lifting the fish out of the water while it's still hanging from her 6lb test saying 'Oh my God' ...I'm telling her not to lift it out of the water like that, meanwhile I'm thinking 'that fish isn't that big, boy she really did have a bad day yesterday' ...then the water explodes and a 35-40" Musky comes clean out of the water right beside her yak and flips 270 degrees, splashing her as it hits the water, ya it was trying to hit her nearly 15" bass while it was hanging out of the water, lol
We rolled in and unloaded, just as we were finishing a downpour began, exact same scenario has happened 3 years in a row, what are the odds of that. It finally stopped raining with about 30 minutes of light remaining in the day. Rather than gear up and head out we rigged up some plastics and made a few casts off the dock. On the 3rd cast I hooked and landed a nice 17" LMB, a few casts later my wife landed a nearly 15" LMB, then I hooked another more typical 10-11" fish. We were pumped, if this was a sign of what was to come...
It was a different story, the weather was all over the place, we were on the water really early, but the bite was totally off. We both landed decent fish on large spinner baits while trolling between spots but other than that their wasn't much going on, I got one more small bass.
Kelly's first of many kayak fish of the week.
For our mid-day outing we tried our favorite damn, which always produces, but the water was coming over a bit too hard, it was pretty challenging and a bit much for Kelly being so new to the sport. We drifted some weed edges on the way back, I ended up with a small SMB, and her a small LMB.
On the evening outing we headed to a tried and true SMB spot, I chucked an x-rap at a couple spots while we were in transit and got a couple piddly LMB, the SMB bite was non-existant so we headed back. I decided I wanted to take a few casts in an area near the launch, at this point I switched to a bucktail, on the first drift bam a 15" LMB, I then proceeded to get a few more. Even tho I switched my wife to a similar bucktail she couldn't get anything, she was somewhat discouraged at the end of the day.
On the way in I hooked a small walleye chucking a spinnerbait near a rock outcrop.
For the morning outing we headed to a popular back bay, again only to be dissapointed. On the way back in I did manage a small walleye at the edge of the hole we were fishing at the end of the previous day, that was the only fish of the outing.
For mid-day we hit the same hole again for some drift fishing, since the bucktail was kicking butt we decided to switch to a more finesse type of approach, small chunks of senkos, light weights and drift fishing a large submerged weed bed, a nice breeze helped. I got action right away.
Kelly wasn't getting any bites part way into her first drift so I swapped baits with her, she hooked up almost immediately, this is when the Musky excitement happened. I set her texas rig up the same as mine and fished it, same setup except with a 25lb flouro leader... ya not exactly finesse anymore, I hooked into something big and strong, I assumed it was a nice walleye, then I saw a 25-30" blueish silver shining dart, I had a musky on, small but a great fight, unfortunately he cut through the flouro leader after a couple minutes. I didn't know a musky would hit a 2.5" chunk of senko!
We worked that area for the rest of the day pretty much, and a couple other short scouts to other spots nearby, we both landed at least a dozen fish each, including a total of 3 walleye, and a few respectable bass each. Tiny baits were kicking butt.
Well we fished a little longer yesterday since we knew the crappy weather was coming, and spent til early afternoon on this day in town. When we got back it looked like more rain, we got a short shower while rigging up, but that was it. Had a beauty afternoon, my wife kicked my butt in a bad way, just twitching those same little chunks of senko, she hooked about a dozen bass, including a decent LMB and a nice smallie in the 16" range, unfortunately it slipped out of her grasp as we were about to take a pic. We're only seeing about 1 out of 10 SMB so I was sorta bummed.
In the evening we went on a quick outing for walleye, managed a few small fish but no walleye.
Kelly continued to lay a beating on me, she stuck to the tried and true methods and continued to produce, meanwhile I was on an R&D mission to find an even better bait (but failed), plus I was spending more time chucking big stuff for musky (ya that's my excuse and I'm sticking to it).
The bite continued to be good, Kelly continued to nail them one after another, I finally caved and went back to the tried and true setup, although I did spend quite a bit of time chucking lures. Each outing I'd hook-up something new to one of my rods for a few casts or to troll between spots.
One thing I forgot to bring was Kelly's net, and she was having a hard time landing bigger fish, ie. the smallmouth she lost yesterday, worst of all she has this really bad habit of lifting the fish out of the water while it's still on the end of the rod. Well ..she switched to an old CC rattlin rap, and a few casts later nailed a big fat LMB, she excitedly called me over and as I approached for the photo, despite me saying don't lift it out the water on the rod many times over ...she did exactly that, with it's weight, a quick wiggle and it was free, this was the big fish so far of the trip, 20ish inches and 4+ lbs for sure. Around 11 AM it was like the fish went on siesta, after about an hour of no bites, we packed it in. We had company coming so we headed back in during the early afternoon, and didn't fish again til nearly mid-day the following day.
It was Friday, a beauty day, the fish were biting and their was no traffic on the lake, only saw a couple other boats fishing, and a couple more traveling the trent ...weird, it was paradise. Kelly was hot again, she started out with a 16.5" from her favorite hole. She was getting lot's of fish and so was I. After a short break and some food we headed out again to a new area.
We were drifting a new area, a mix or channels and rocks surrounded by a weed bed and it was hot. ..and well, she did it again, this time the fish was definitely over 5lb and could have gone 6lb!! ...a monster, alas no pics so it's all just a rumour
, I was so upset when she lifted it and it broke free, I was just a couple paddle lengths away pleading for her not to lift it, ...but she did, she's new and has lot's to learn, but heck, I've been fishing all my life and never had an LMB like that, it would have been awesome to have a pic. Here's one of mine...
The sun was nearing the horizon and it was time to head in. Along the trip home was a deep channel where I got a musky last year. I just had to troll something through their. The lure I had on was not ideal for musky, but it would have to do, it was late and we had to keep moving as we had a ways to go. ...well wouldn't you know it, at almost precisely the same spot, BAM! I thought my med-heavy rod was going to snap, it made some unpleasant noises that for sure. Their was a lot of tension on the rod, but finally I got it free from the holder, the fish felt strong, it definitely had some size but not like last years musky, and it was quickly losing steam, kind of coming in like another type of fish ..as the fish approached I couldn't believe my eyes, it was a huge walleye, I'm not talking Quinte huge, but definitely kawarthas huge, 30ish inches, much more slender than something form Quinte, I was excited, and kind of pleased I didn't have to wrestle trebles out of a musky in the twilight, but wouldn't you know it, I'm easing the fish up to the boat preparing to land it, it's doing a like zig zag and pop, it's off
doh, I had the rod set up for musky, really heavy drag, 20lb flouro, I'm betting after that hard yank when it hit their wasn't much meat left holding it on to the hook. I just sat their and watched the fish slowly swim away into the depths, back in the direction it came from. Frustrating evening to say the least, still a great time, exciting stuff.
When I got in I packed us up for the trip home. Kelly quickly informed me that their is no way we are not going out for a couple hours before checkout the next day, lol
Day 8, checkout
We rose early, this was the first day the mist was on the lake all week, it was a calm and only 10 degrees C, it quickly warmed up tho.
We took one rod each and just a few essentials. The bite was on, in just a couple hours we landed about 15 fish between us, not counting perch and bluegills. Including a little musky 'pocket sized' and another little walleye, and a few respectable bass. We were sad to have to leave, the bite was the best it had been all week, and so was the weather!
I'll be back in a few weeks, this time I'll have the kids, so not sure I'll get out in the kayak much. This week was the first vacation we've had in 10 years without kids, and I've never fished so much over a week in my life, it was a great week.