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  1. So my favourite holiday is upon us. Nothing I enjoy more than Turkey , Ham and pumpkin pie. It’s like Christmas but I don’t have to buy anyone a gift, it’s the perfect holiday for this Scotsman. It also means fishing, traditionally we do a mixed bag of fishing but since it was only me and the wee man at home for this one , I let him pick. All he wanted was to catch a salmon. As any good Dad would, I heard the call and loaded up on the proven lures . Set up the float rod and rigged up a bottom bouncing outfit . We had all the tools to catch him a big gal , now we just had to put in the time. Friday night we hit the minor moon phase and casted J-11 and J-13’s till dark , then switched over to an array of glow spoons . 5 hours of watching fish surface and nothing hitting . Friday was a bust. Saturday we had crazy winds down in Southern Ontario, felt bad for everyone fishing the CTE on Erie . Almost lost some patio furniture (gotta put that stuff away soon) The weeman and his friends went out for smallies and managed to land 3 fish before the wind sent them home. I opted to go into work for a bit and then spent the rest of the day watching 39 hours and dreaming of fishing . Sunday A.M. we were out early, casted glow spoons till the sun came up. Rapalas and spoons got thrown, bounced roe bags and even floated a few jigs, nada , not even a bump. Out of all the anglers we saw only one fish almost get caught , but after it pulled some circus class acrobatics , she spit the hook. Another 6 hours of fishing and the wee man is convinced no one catches Salmon . Had a great dinner Sunday evening with all the fixins, wasn’t the usual big get together but the world isn’t it’s usual place right now. In the midst of a turkey and ham coma and watching 3 different games at once I agreed to head out again this morning. The lad had his waders at the door this morning at 5 am. Get down to the water and tie up leaders , I put on my trusty K.O. Wabbler , third cast , bang , big gal on. The wee man grabs the net and after a couple of runs and jumps I have her within seconds of being in the net. My son , who I love with all my heart , makes the worst attempt and netting a fish I have ever seen. Puts the rim of the net straight into my leader and snapppp , I just miss the tail of the fish as she swims off. Welll #@€£ , I was losing it on the inside but thankfully my Parenting skills kicked in and I didn’t react . We had a good talk about proper netting and what went wrong. Last thing I want to do is make it a negative experience for the lad and have him swear off fishing all together. Another KO on the line and away we go. Hour later I get another one on and lose her to the rocks . I would repeat this a few times on both KO wobblers and Little Cleos. The spot we were fishing has some serious boulders and on some of those long runs they seem to head directly for safety in there . The wee man had a rough morning. Countless snags and spoons lost , I think 8 in total . He was tying leaders for days . Poor kid I lost another biggun to the rocks and finally landed a small trout . I didn’t want to leave without seeing him get one on but time was against us and he had to get to his Moms for Turkey . Man was he just steaming , cursing all things salmon as we were leaving. I tried to relay stories of the countless hours I have put in and the thousand of fish I’ve lost, but none of it matters, he’s on his own mission and so far he’s losing the battle. I told him we would get out a few times this week , just gotta get into Peters and restock on lures and I think the Abu needs more line after this weekend Fishing, sometimes ya land em, somedays ya don’t . It’s a suckers game I tell ya. The wee man and I are out on Erie for football sized smallies come Saturday. Throw a few prayers up that I can get him into a Salmon before then. Tight Lines
  2. Hey Guys, When I last left off, the boat had been put away in her early winter slumber. Its almost impossible to believe that its been 8 months since I put the boat to bed, now it makes me even more sad because that means we are only about 4 months away from putting the boat away again. Holy geeze. The 8 months have provided some pretty decent fishing as the guys and I have grown as anglers, we have really started to dial in on the fish, our standard has definitely risen. We have high expectations every time we hit the water. I have spent countless hours working to get the boat where I want it, learned some things and had some scary experiences. So without further adieu I present to you once again AKRISONER's (AE-KREE-ONE-ERS) semi annual review My last thread ended with the boys and i busting ice to get the boats out of the lake. Winter came fast and furious, we had the earliest ice I have ever seen and not only was the ice early it was quality from start of season to end. That meant the huts and short rods came out early and the fishing was pretty darn good. with such good solid smooth black ice, i found myself itching to take advantage of it and build a lot of rinks. Fishing took a bit of a back seat while i skated on my own rink every weekend. the snow was relentless too, just a classic old fashioned winter, I was loving it. The fishing continued to produce I personally didnt have the greatest winter size wize, but I caught a lot of fish through the ice so I couldnt complain. It just seemed that when we did get a big one, it never visited my hole lol. Oh well I figured maybe that PB bass i had caught for the fall was making me pay the fish gods back for my incredible luck then. As long as the fish are biting, im happy. Sometimes you just gotta be the camera man, rather than the subject. Maybe I was also cheating the fish gods a little, because my mind kept thinking hockey. not only was hockey taking up a lot of my time, moving snow seemed to take over my life, it just kept dumping this year and for once it didnt melt, it just stayed and kept piling up. and then the temperature really dipped, we toughed it out, but as much as I like ice fishing, sometimes an uninsulated pop up is a bit rough to sit in when its -30 and windy, thank god we kept catching fish or I may have quit until the warmer weather showed up. slab crappie can help the mood a bit too. Finally i got a few fish that were pushing to the larger size of my PB Range. Nothing like some foot long crappies to warm you up on a really cold February day. My girlfriend tells everyone i tried to kill her by bringing her out in the cold this year fishing. Here she is doing her best mount everest victim impersonation. She survived, but the fact she got skunked that day didnt help my cause either...I still convinced her to come fishing with me this spring so shes not totally over it yet lol. with the general lack of size the guys and i set out on one cold but calm beautiful february day to do some exploring. This particular spot didnt produce any fish, but the smooth thick ice made it just a neat spot to set up camp and hang around for a while. with the historic ice conditions family day brought the opportunity for myself and my brother who rarely visits up north to do some exploring to areas we had never been on snowmobiles before. Needless to say, seeing the big water by sled was a really really cool experience. Who knows when or if we will ever get to have this experience again. Things also warmed up on family day enough for me to bring the kids out fishing. What a riot it was having my 8 year old neice and 6 year old nephew in the hut for the afternoon. They loved fishing with a flasher. its almost like a video game for them, and heck they even caught some fish! I think they actually adapt to this kind of fishing well because they are willing to do exactly what you say with 100% conviction. You say drop the bait they do it immediately, raise it up...yes sir! Heres Owen with the first pickerel of his life. as march came, the ice just kept getting thicker. this particular adventure for crappies, saw my gas auger break (the new jiffys are absolute garbage, buyer beware!) Back to the old manual it was...punching holes through 36+ inches of ice manually is a good work out I tell ya! not being much of a fish eater myself, I have to say, crappie as far as fish goes, is pretty darn tasty. I had never felt this way before but the idea of trying to catch a nice 10 inch crappie for dinner added a level of excitement to my fishing experience I had never felt before. I caught a perfect 10 incher and threw it into my ice livewell...only to discover half an hour later my fish had escaped back down the hole through the wall! I couldnt believe my misfortune. my heater gas ran out and it was damn cold outside, my holes were freezing up and I was getting very cold.. Absolutely freezing and getting very hungry things were looking grim as i continued to catch fish too small to justify taking for a meal. Sure enough this beauty bit my bait at the last minute, the feeling was somewhat overwhelming knowing i had just got myself dinner. deep fried crappie tacos with lime crema and cabbage slaw...damn I go could go for some right now. later in the week i headed out for a fish and once again manually drilled my holes (stupid jiffy was still getting fixed) but was greeted with a screen absolutely full of crappie. Like shooting fish in a barrel, but dad swung by on the sled and watched me pull out fish after fish. His exact quote as he sat and watched me "now this is fishing" Things finally started to warm up, spring was in the air and the crappie fishing was awesome. Getting greasy, snagging slabs, Daves safari completing the look with the ice conditions being as good as they were, my dad and i ventured for the first time out on the sound for some laketrout, It instantly became one of my favourite ice fishing experiences I have ever had. We all became addicted to ice fishing lakers in one trip. spring also meant the end to hockey season. My team that I run has played together for 11 years, year round for 8 of those 11 years and never won a chip together, well it finally happened this year, after being pretty awful all season, a magic took over the team in the playoffs and we all played the best hockey of our lives for 6 games straight and took the True North Title Home! next job on the list was digging my boat out of its winter slumber for our annual bass fishing trip to the souther united states. This year we were returning to lake marion santee cooper SC. Digging my boat out of 4 feet of snow, things went without a hitch. minor details, swapped a hub on the trailer and we were in business, unfortuantely this year the fish did not cooperate at all. We caught a total of 4 bass over the course of 4 days, not a single one over 2lbs...caught some by catch, a close to 20lb cat fish, some chain pickerel, warmouth, shellcracker and crappies...but just couldnt find the bass. Sadly santee may be headed the same direction as many famous fisheries that simply see to much tournament pressure with anglers hammering fish on beds. Oh well the escape to the warmth was welcomed, especially with the winter/spring we were having. I remember one specific moment as we came out of the mountains of west virginia having driven since 6pm the previous day and pulled into North Carolina at 7 in the morning. We hopped out the car and the smell of spring in full bloom was almost overwhelming. A cool experience having not smelt nature and plants alive for the past 6+ months. a cool chain pickerel gator territory driving and fishing the narrow rivers and ponds of "the hatchery" after personally getting skunked for bass after driving close to 3,000km I sure enough got my birthday bass after all thanks to my niece and nephew..they are the best! my girlfriend craving some heat herself convinced me a trip to the beach was a good idea...who was I to say no? Off to Cuba we went...and me sneaking some fly fishing in every day made the trip very enjoyable I even convinced her to let me go out with a guide for a full day. My casting directly into 30km wind was definitely not up to snuff. I spent a lot of time not casting the fly rod, but a cool experience none the less, catching baracuda on the fly as well as spinning gear, and putting a beating on some snapper feeding the entire camp with fresh fish. I got lucky enough to cross path with two fairly large cudas that I ended up catching in 2 consecutive casts. dont worry about the nasty gill grabs, these fish were eaten by the guys at camp! I thought cudas were poisonous but what do i know? immediately upon my return to Toronto I had to make the drive from Toronto to Kapuskasing via sudbury and cochrane. How nice of the north to greet me with a nice May snowstorm to drive through for my long ass drive. Needless to say, this was a very very very long day lol as I got through cochrane and headed west to Kap, the snow had stopped and the sun was setting beautifully, and sure enough these two moose were standing right in the middle of the road, I had never seen moose so close without them scaring me to death and nearly killing me. This was a nice experience I saw them from half a kilometer away and got to pull up slowly and snap photos. Really changed my whole mood after the drive I was having. Back to Pointe Au Baril some big time boat work was in order. On a trip for pike, I was doing some autocharting running the Troller on 10 for a few minutes when my motor shut off. I wasnt sure what the heck was going on. It seemed to almost intermittently work? but then would fail? So my fuse wasnt blown? I headed home to investigate and this is the state i found my ground cable in. The POS plug that minkotta uses had caused my wires to slowly tear while vibrating causing an increase in resitance on my ground wire which eventually lit the cable on fire. That along with re configuring my electronics on my boat to add a helix 9 to my two 7's resulted in some long hours rewiring the boat, it was worth it in the end, i enjoy the work and the boat is running perfectly now. once the boat was back in commission i tried to get into some pike. Caught a few in the 30's but man the giants were just not there this year probably due to the crazy spring we had. this cheeky walleye came out of 4 fow on a new growth weed edge. The swimbait was only about 5 inches shorter than the fish lol and then it came....bass season finally arrived after what felt like an absolute eternity. I actually quit fishing at the end of May to build up my anticipation. I spent my time organizing my tackle, cleaning the boat up etc etc. By opener, I was absolutely losing my mind, luckily my third fish of the year was this 4.6lb beauty a new PB for me on the kawarthas. the fishing was tough on the sunday of opener with our small derby's winning bag not reaching double digits. It was an absolute grind. We got good numbers but just could not find any decent fish. I sure could have used that 4 on sunday rather than saturday lol. Heres Jake with the pathetic "big fish" sad indeed lol as is always, the following weekend brought about my favourite fishing time of the year, Zone 14 bass opener. I went up early and spent the friday re-organizing and cleaning the boat for the week ahead. Here is The Number One Sorcerer looking nifty. Opening day didnt disappoint, Jake was super late so we didnt even get on the water until 9am, but we quickly scooped up a 19lb bag, and over 30 fish with the average size being high 2-3lbs. Just an incredible day on the water. I even caught my first of two pickerel over 5lbs that day in 3 fow on a chatterbait caught another one in the evening as well...what a pattern lol a pike with some muskyish barring, i almost thought it was juvi tiger! hookset after hookset This particular evening I got onto a topwater bite for the ages, I ended up bringing in close to 17lbs of fish in about a 15 minute period all on the megabass dog x. Insanity These sunsets were as good as i remembered, minus the swarms of blackflies and mosquitoes lol sometimes you gotta trip flip for a few green ones too, with the flooding on G bay, go figure we now have a pretty awesome timber fishery for largemouth. Where the heck was I? Flipping 1oz texas rigs into timber for green ones on G bay, go figure. speaking of flooding, here is our yard on the lake side looking towards my neighbors. Not pictured, is the 3 days of my vacation week i spent taking out our dock cribs and re-installing our docks. My favourite part was diving 7 feet underwater to grab 100lb rocks inside a 4x4 crib. Fun stuff lol when the average size of fish is the example below..and the numbers are way way way into the double digits it makes for a good time to the point you almost get tired of catching....almost.... my bass thumb after 5 days on the water was telling the story nicely one final 15+lb bag was in order before the dock work began late in the week. The crankbait bite was absolutely on fire just another classic G bay day. over the course of this entire week I think grand total I saw 5 boats fishing? Only one within 200 meters of my boat. It literally doesnt get much better anywhere else in the world. the final sunset of my week of vacation was a fitting ending to an incredible week. Thanks for reading, until next time (approximately 6 months from now, probably just as ice season is about to kick off) Peace!
  3. Guys, how the hell do ya post pictures from Tiny pic or dropbox on here in the classifieds forum. I cant figure the crap out. lol
  4. I have been meaning to post this for awhile now and I personally find this story amazing . Many of you might know that I head out on some interesting trips to the backwoods of north/central Ontario in search of that perfect lake , well several years ago I found such a lake through a lot of leg work and investigating as well as some great help from a friend in the MNR . This lake is strictly a lake trout and smallmouth lake with the only access being by float plane or quad and the closest cottage being 20 km away (few hunt camps are in the area) Anyways , this story started in 2011 when a friend of mine caught a nice lake trout and as always I took a picture . 2012 came around and another friend of mine caught a trout (one of many) and another picture was taken . When I got home from the trip I started to go through the pictures and noticed one of the trout in the picture looked familiar , it had a scar on its side and a deformed tail . I went through the trips from 2011 and sure enough there she is . Same fish , same area one year earlier . We all thought that was amazing and once in a lifetime experience but we all kept our eyes open for that scarred laker in 2013. Well wouldn't you know it good ole scar side came for a boat visit that year as well as the fall of 2014 . Same fish , exact same spot (give or take 40yds) four years in a row . Now you might think this lake is a small lake but it is fairly large (around 200 hectares) and deep . The bay we keep catching this fish in is roughly 40-60 feet deep . I told this story to a couple MNR guys and they both told me to go buy some lotto tickets because that is very , very rare especially for a lake trout . Lake trout move around a lake following food and don't really have a "home" like a bass or a pike who can literally live under the same stump there whole life . The MNR also advised me that this lake trout is probably an old fish (20-25yrs old) due to the growth over the four years or lack of . Anyways enough of the jib jab , proof is in the pictures . Enjoy !!! 2011 2012 2013 2014 I guess live release works eh
  5. The boys and I just got back from 4 days and 3 nights in Algonquin Park and here are the details: We were never too concerned about ice out but the park setting an interior "open date" of May 9th, corresponding with the exact start of our trip, was a bit ominous. We contemplated backup plans, but work had been booked off across the board, and we had our minds set on Algonquin. Thankfully the ice melted and the park opened in time. We got our wish and the weeks (months...?) of planning did not go for naught. We picked our dates to correspond with with three things - ice out, brook trout fishing, and the park being void of biting bugs. Maybe it is the "city boy" in me, but going into the park at the height of black fly or mosquito season (or both) is simply not as palatable as it used to be. The park is so much more enjoyable when you're not constantly swatting the air and when you don't have to be in the tent by sundown. After a 3am departure from Richmond Hill and many hours of driving, we picked up our rental canoe from a local outfitter amidst lighting and rain. The forecast called for bad weather all day, but the outfitter assured us that the storm would soon blow over and we'd be in the clear. I told him I'd hold him to that promise, and we were on our way. He also gave us some fishing tips, which I'll get to later. After picking up our permits and another hour or so of driving, we arrived at our access point, to realize that the storm had indeed cleared. The outfitter was right, and the Weather Network was wrong! We let out a collective cheer, loaded up the canoe, and began our journey. After 3 hours of paddling against the wind and portaging uphill, we reached our home for the next 3 nights. We set up camp and prepared for a relaxing evening. However, as it goes, things are never without their hiccups! Through unloading our gear, there was accidental discharge of our bairspray which got on our water jug...then our hands, and then our faces. This rendered two us incapacitated while we dunked our heads in the icy cold lake until the stinging subsided. It was a good confidence boost that the bear spray may actually work if we ever needed to use it, but I'm not sure it was worth the price we had to pay! We took a nap, fished for a few hours with no luck, and then hit the sack after a dinner of ribeye steak, and a few adult beverages, and some cigars. We turned out the lanterns with eager anticipation for the day of fishing that awaited us. We awoke the next morning to sunny skies but a very windy lake. We fished for around 5 hours with not even a bite. We started to contemplate what we were doing wrong or if the fish were simply " turned off." All the doubt that comes with a skunking flooded our minds - are we fishing too shallow? Too deep? Too fast? Too slow? Too big? Too small? Did we bring the wrong colours? Did we get the dreaded sunscreen on our gear? When was the last time this lake was stocked anyways? Should we stick to bass fishing...? We had it on good authority that this lake was full of big trout. Our friend the outfitter, who also appeared to be a weather oracle, had told us the next lake over, while holding smaller fish, was a sure thing. We decided that tomorrow we'd go there and see if he could go 2/2 on his predictions. The next morning we enjoyed a breakfast of pancakes and coffee... ...which was promptly ruined when we noticed a group of 6 canoes, fishing rods in sight, entering our lake, and heading for the same portage as us. You see, this portage they were about to do (as were we) was relatively short, but the next one over was extremely lengthy. We were pretty sure they were not going for that loop, considering the distance they'd already traveled, but more likely the same destination as us. It was a really small lake and we didn't want to be crowded or for them to get a head start on the fish! Nonetheless, we loaded the canoe and headed over to the next lake. Much to our surprise, they had gone for the next portage over after all, and the lake was empty! We had the water and the fish all to ourselves. We started off slow and started to question weather the outfitter's second prediction would hold true. The doubts once again started to creep into our minds. Although no one said a thing, we each knew what the others were thinking. We didn't give up, and we started on a pattern of vertical jigging spoons tipped with pink trout worms near wood structure. Eureka! That did the trick and we were on the fish! The outfitter had been right again and was quickly gaining legend status in our books. I wish I had what happened next on camera. After getting our first fish on the stringer for dinner later that night, we noticed a large gull land on the lake. It slowly swam closer and closer. We kept an eye on it as we knew exactly what it was thinking. After fishing for a while longer, our gull watch became complacent, and all of a sudden the big bird was circling 20 feet above the canoe. No big deal we said, we'll just pull the stringer into the boat. Except the trout had come off the stringer and was now floating on the surface. We tried to paddle over to net the fish but we had the anchor down and couldn't get closer. The gull was circling lower and lower. One of the guys tried to splash the bird with the paddle while we pulled the anchor up. The anchor was down ahead of the canoe, so pulling it up actually brought us further from the fish and the bird. As we got further away, the bird found the courage to swoop down. We expected it to try and fly off with the fish, and maybe even struggle to carry the fish and drop it. The bird came down, grabbed the fish with its beak, flipped it in the air, and swallowed the 12 inch brookie whole. Our jaws dropped and we were silent in the collective acceptance that the gull had bestest us. We continued to fish down the lake and our pattern held true. Although there were no trophies, we caught 18 fish, lost another 6 or so, and saw many more. The wish were between 10-14 inches long and the bite was very light. We were catching them in 10-15 feet of water, close to shore. The water temp was 12-15 degrees. We kept a few for dinner that night and enjoyed them with fried onions and pancetta (Italian bacon), and some cheddar and broccoli rice. That evening we relished the sweet feeling of victory. We savoured our fish dinner, finished the last of our alcoholic provisions, smoked some more cigars, stayed up later under the stars, and declared the trip a resounding success. Any doubts we had about our fishing prowess were forgotten (well until the next future skunking anyways...) The next morning we packed up camp and were lucky enough to paddle out of the park under blue skies and with zero wind. Through the paddle we recounted the stories of the trip - the bear spray incident, the thieving gull, the fishing successes, and all of the other inside jokes that friends share. Algonquin Park is a magical place and it went unsaid that we would be back next year once again. Thanks for reading, Alex
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