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First report of the year

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Hi everyone, it seems like ages since I posted a report (I blame MikeH for selling his boat!) but I'm happy to be back and posting my first report of the season. I've been out a few time earlier in the kayak and on rice with my wife hunting walleye's (she outfished me so no report!). Oh yeah - since my last report I got married to a wonderful city girl who had no idea what she was in for - hehe :)


So anyhow - early in the spring we were at the outdoorsman show and Julia got chatting with a camp owner from Lake Kipawa (a bit north of North Bay just over the Quebec border) and between the owner Reggie's sale job and my flat out begging we ended up signing up for a 3 day trip the previous weekend. So without further ado here's the report from 3 seasons camp on Lake Kipawa:


We arrived Saturday Morning and quickly setup in Reggies nice cottage



Properly stocked fridge by Sean Maurik, on Flickr



Now what? by Sean Maurik, on Flickr



Kipawa Lake Fishing 2011 by Sean Maurik, on Flickr


We had a great trip and we owe a lot of that to Reggie who made a point of helping us out. Being up there for only 3 days he was quick to point out a couple key spots and techniques that worked well for us. For the most part we took his advice and focused on what would work and saved the exploring on our own for another trip and I'm glad we did. The couple times I did go wandering were fun but not nearly as productive - there's just so much water to cover and so little time.


We spent the first night fishing a river mouth area and landed a few little guys in a bit of rain dragging jigs with leaches.



Kipawa Lake Fishing 2011 by Sean Maurik, on Flickr



I held a fish! by Sean Maurik, on Flickr


The next morning I wandered around but didn't find too much (my wife prefers sleeping in the mornings so I had those to myself while we fished together in the afternoons and evenings). I came back and we had visitors in the camp:



The Tortoise and the Hare? by Sean Maurik, on Flickr


The afternooon was hot still and sunny so I thought we'd try some weed beds and other likely pike locations but couldn't raise a thing :(


I was getting a little worried but that night we went to Smiths Bay - we weren't the only ones there by a long shot but I could see why people were hanging out. Slip floats, small jigs and leaches worked for us and we were happy to get our fish fry supplies into the boat.


Monday morning I trolled Smith bay with an x-rap and found some action - that topped off our fish fry supplies.



Kipawa Lake Fishing 2011 by Sean Maurik, on Flickr


In the afternoon Reggie gave us some tips for lake trout and I'm glad we listened. He took the time to show me the rig he likes and had taken us out on the first day to show us the fishing grounds including a nearby laker hole so we headed out there in the still hot sun for a couple hours of mid afternoon lakers and got into quite a few. Unfortunately they weren't above the min size but they were lots of fun and I look forward to trying them again.



Kipawa Lake Fishing 2011 by Sean Maurik, on Flickr


After a delicious fish fry we headed back to smith bay for our last night.



Kipawa Lake Fishing 2011 by Sean Maurik, on Flickr


Our honey hole from the night before was dead so at 8pm we wandered over near where brother Lund and Reggie were fishing and tried a spot there but just weren't feeling it.


Julia said she wanted to go back to "our" spot so we puttered back and I threw out the float again hoping to get a couple keepers for the road at least.


A minute later the float goes down and I set the hook on what I'm certain is a pike. But at least it's a decent pike and Julia's never seen one so I'm happy to bring him in. He's running every time he gets near the boat and I can't get a look. Finally he waves his tail when I can see the float so I get a good sense of the size but in the dark water I still can't make out the details. After a couple more runs I finally see the fin - it's got a white tip! Holy crap, it's a walleye! Then I se the tail and dorsal fins in detail and their blue/green - how cool is that. A big blue walleye.


Julia sets up the net and the big girl finally lets me direct her into it and she's in the boat. The hook couldn't have been set any better - just outside the big row of teeth so my light braid and 1/16oz jig were safe the whole fight (thank god). After a couple pictures and a measurement of 30" I happily put her back in to catch her next year. That's my personal best walleye and a great way to end my first Kipawa trip.



30" Blue Walleye by Sean Maurik, on Flickr


Here's a video of the release - for some reason the HTML embed isn't working, sorry: release video


Of course we weren't done though - our hole lit up after that and we drove home to Toronto with a sack of walleye fillets that I poached up on the BBQ since Toronto had no power (go figure).


So big thanks to Reggie at 3 seasons camp, highly recommended.



Kipawa Lake Fishing 2011 by Sean Maurik, on Flickr


I've put all the pics and video of the big fishes release up on flickr if you want to see the rest:



The bite is on!

Edited by TbayBoy

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Looks like a really nice place. Great pickerel there at the end, you wife had good intuition :thumbsup_anim:

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That's one of the nicest Walleye photos that I've seen on here Sean. Congrats on the fish and the marriage.

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Beauty trip and a beauty fish!! But seriously, only 12 beer? :whistling: Thanks for sharing!! :clapping:

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I'm getting old and sophistimicated - was the 12 beer (plus a couple extras I had lying around) plus 3 nice bottles of wine and a 10 year old port :)

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