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AKRISONERS - Semi Annual Year in Review 2018


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Hey OFC, its been a minute!

According to my calculations its been over 7 months since my last report…so wouldn’t you know it..its once again time for AKRISONER’s (EH-KREE-ONE-ERS) semi-annual year in review. Forgive me, I’m no Borger/Bunk, but I try!

When we last left off, the fall fishing season had come to an end, November had past and holy cow did the weather turn cold in a hurry, so fast in fact that early December looked damn well like winter, and with such cold weather came early season solid ice. We coulda been out earlier, but December 16th was the first day I could get up north, and out I crawled spud bar in hand, wearing the survival suit, a life jacket and a rope tied to my waist with the homies holding on…to walk out on 6 inches of hard black ice…incredible. This solid start to the ice season created a foundation like I have never seen in the 15 years I have been on the ice on G bay. (more on this later)


As Christmas approached the weather just seemed to get colder and colder…with solid, smooth black ice and the fishing somewhat slow, in a rare occurrence I put the rods down and built myself a hockey rink and a damn good one at that if I do say so myself.

-35 mornings included me shoveling snow into the cracks that had formed with the contraction of the ice during the cold cold nights, then hauling pails of hot water down to make slush which I quickly packed into the cracks. It was a labour of love, but the nephews and nieces loved it for the short time that they were able to play outside in the -25 weather. My brothers on the other hand stayed outside with me and games of shinny were on rotate. Theres just something about a rink on a lake at your disposal that is maybe even better than fishing. A real treat indeed.



It truly was a December to remember


Like any good lake rink, they aren’t sacred, snow, wind etc ruins them so back to fishing it was…overall January was friggin tough, nowhere near the numbers or quality of the year before, perhaps the whacky weather had something to do with it, we managed a few but they were definitely fewer and farther between then we are used to.


The cold weather solidified the lake like I had never seen, I was even able to go adventuring on the snowmobile to areas I had never dreamt of riding to. It was pretty darn cool to see endless thick, clear black ice.


A trip rolled up that I had booked back in September, it was time to go off and engage in another passion of mine, snowboarding…but in the Far East! I have a goal to snowboard in every major skiing area of the world, so far I have knocked off eastern and western North America and New Zealand, Japan knocked off another checkmark on the list. I spent 5 days riding including doing some alpine ski touring During said trip a member of my touring crew broke his shin after running into a tree at over 1000meters elevation on the side of a mountain. We had to perform mountain rescue that lasted 7 hours of daisy chaining a guys down the mountain and it ended with me skiing on a splitboard through the pitch black down a logging trail during a snowstorm…it was epic. The guys life saved, and a story for me to remember for the rest of my life.



Japan was friggin epic, we got the snow that they are famous for (80cm in 24 hoursish) best riding of my life..if you want more details or are considering it yourself PM me, or just go, you wont regret it for a second!

Kicked it in Tokyo for a few days too, caught flack for my buddies for not fishing Biwa but its hundreds of kilometers from Tokyo…I don’t regret it! Lol

Ramen is friggin delicious, and im totally depressed that it just is impossible to get it properly done in Ontario...ive heard rumours of some good places but havent found any yet.

Back to Ontario…it was mid February just in time for when fishing really starts to pick up…every weekend we fished it seemed to pick up more and more with a crescendo in march. The flasher tells the story


Even got the old man to catch his first crap


I got so cocky at one point, I caught a crap and said to hell with this I want a photo with two of them, dropped my line down quick and nailed a second just for the photo…that’s how hot the bite was lol. I think on our best day we definitely landed over 60, it was almost annoying taking them off. Not being much for keeping fish I think me and the guys kept a grand total of 3 crappies out of the hundreds we caught over the season. I realized crappie probably is the best freshwater tasting fish…but not tasty enough for me to care to keep em lol


We decided to take a week off of the craps and try simcoe for lakers…got skunked, thought that the fishing in a crowd of tents with people ripping around on crappy old snowmobiles was nowhere near as good as sitting in solitude hammering crappies and vowed to never go back again ahaha. (sorry barrie folks)



We had truly gone crappie crazy


Sometime during this time like the very end of February some of you may remember me considering buying a boat…well I did…she stayed with the previous owner though until things warmed up a little, him storing it until April was part of the deal..but damn was I ready to bring her home even if the thermometer had us thinking more about snow than boats.


We had over 3 feet of black hard ice on the bay this year…guys were bringing out the trucks and cars just like the good old days! I had never seen anything like it in the time ive been around.


Go figure the year I buy a boat we have the longest winter in history…that’s my luck…you can all blame me for the delayed start to soft water season this year. I couldn’t believe it, we literally didn’t have ice off on the pike opener!

A lot of hours were spent in the driveway, completely rewiring the boat, building in storage compartments, building a rod rack for the rod locker etc etc. we got the boat dialed for the season. This included one nice balmy April morning of wiring in the driveway with the thermometer at -8…what the hell was going on?

Finally the winter broke and some warm (relative) weather arrived.

We decided to get out on the water on lake O for some browns. We also tried to learn to use planer boards. We seemed to figure them out but got skunked regardless. It appeared as though we were too early as everyone else also got skunked. The highlight of this trip though was that you know its been a damn long winter, but jake and I were trolling tarps off complaining that it was friggin hot in the sun…checked the weather network app, it was 13 degrees lol…winter will do that to ya.


Lake O sure is a beauty in the spring though, we will have to give her another go sometime, or maybe take what we learned with the boards and try them for some walleye.


May finally arrived and it was pike opener…I tried an old pattern from the year before that I figured out and brought my girlfriend out to try it with me..she had never fished softwater in her life, and did a little ice fishing with me over the winter for the first time in her life. Her first 5 minutes ice fishing she caught a pike, and knowing how beginners luck works, I warned her from the outset, “you are going to catch a big fish today so just be prepared”

Her third cast of her life, she catches a decent one…and 15 minutes later this gal comes to play…yup, my girlfriend in 15 minutes had caught a pike that took me probably 20 years of my life fishing to catch.


With the new boat slimed, it was time to get some finishing touches done because as planned the year before it was time to go chase bass in Santee South Carolina. Some new bumpers for the wheel wells, some new lights and fixing a crack on the frame plus replacing some rivets on the diamond plate. Its good to have good skilled friends lol


The week leading up to the trip, the weather took a really bad turn, a tropical cyclone nearly formed and then a pattern of tropical rain from florida began funneling into the area. It was hot, sticky, and wet as hell…although it kinda felt good after the winter we had had. Lake Marion was everything could have ever wanted as far as it comes to fishing largemouth southern style.


The story of the lake is that the santee river was to be dammed, the war began and they didn’t have the manpower to remove the trees prior to flooding it…so what you are left with is quite literally a lake that’s about 8 feet deep in most areas, while a forest continues to grow in the middle of it to this day…bizarre and amazing. The lake is also largely uncharted and absolutely full of stumps and deadheads. Its pretty damn intimidating to say the least. We spent a heck of a lot of time fishing what the locals call “the swamp” or formally known as “stumphole” both names are awesome and so is the scenary.



We were lucky enough to meet up with a local that I met off of another forum, he showed us how to safely navigate the lake through the stumps showed us some spots and even took a few of us out on his brand new fully loaded 250 horsepower 21 foot triton, Ken an ex-marine who had done two tours in Iraq and Afghanistan was one of the nicest guys I have ever met. Southern hospitality is real I tell ya!


Between dodging 15 foot gators, casting into trees and fishing swamps, us Canadian boys were impressed, this lake was friggin cool!




The weather started to take another bad turn that night and sure enough we got nearly flooded out of our campsite. The boys were getting a little low morale, the fishing had been tough due to the weather, we were wet, hot and to add to it, we were running a little low on food after a miscommunication ended up with a bag of ice being poured into a cooler that was storing dry goods…everything got soaked.


Funny back story, when we drove down to santee state park Waze took us on some insane backroute through plantations and the total boonies, we really figured that the park was in the middle of nowhere.

After a really whack dinner of white bread and chef Boyardee we were hurtin to say the least.

We lit a decent fire to try and dry out a bit, my wallet had literally got completely soaked during one of the heaviest downpours I had ever seen in my entire life that afternoon, I noticed jake drying something on the fire…yup, we had to save our benjamins lol


 The boys were hungry and decided that it was worth it even if it took hours to drive to civilization and find food. I didn’t have phone service so I left it to the guys to figure out…sure enough a quick search for mcdonalds said that one was 5 minutes away? no way…we were in the middle of nowhere were we not?

We all hopped in the truck at 11 pm and took off to try find food, sure enough a quick 5 minute drive down a different road out of the park, a left turn and there we were…in the small town of santee featuring grocery stores, fast food, restaurants, hotels, gas stations etc etc. you name it it had it lol…Jake literally said “you guys friggin made me eat chef Boyardee! I hate chef Boyardee!!!!!” we all died laughing.

Needless to say we feasted hard.

We put in another day of fishing, caught a few but it was pretty slow…according to ken we had literally come at the worst time as the fish were transitioning to their summer hunches with the heat and humidity/rain wave that had moved in. It was still fun to be bass fishing


Our trip done with heavy storms barreling in a 17 hour drive ahead of us we decided to pack up a little early and head back home to Canada.

Coming home a pike jerbait bite awaited me…this fine morning we spent 2.5 hours fishing, caught 50+pike including a few decent ones, no giants though but the numbers made it fun as hell including multiple double headers all fishing jerkbaits in less than 10 fow..fun indeed


the warm weather and lack of blackflies a total surprise it was a perfect weekend.


The weeks carried on and finally…finally after all of that wait bass opener arrive. An annual tradition a family friend hosts a small family tournament dubbed the triple C on the tri lakes. Jake and I in the new boat fished hard and lost by less than half a pound we just couldn’t get the big bite we needed to put us over the top. We caught a pile of fish but couldn’t get the big bite we needed. Congrats to the boys for beating us this year, we will get our trophy back though.


An evening again on the water brought on a decent topwater bite and some decent fish and a cool photo of me in the new rig


The following day we made a quick trip out in the morning before the heat of the day arrived. This cheeky perch thought he was in the for the meal of a lifetime


And they say big baits are for big fish

To throw it in the mix…jake then landed his first ski of his life on a jerkbait using 15lb fluro.


It was the 5th musky we had hooked up with that weekend but we finally actually landed this one. The musky fishing on pigeon would have been nuts on bass opener. I had one bite me off that shot my line back into my face and left a red line across my head. Man musky are crazy!

Finished up the weekend and headed home and began packing/planning for the truly big trip..my annual weeklong bass opener vacation. Leaving Friday and arriving in barrie, this sky prompting “sailors delight” told me that we were in for some really damn good fishing.


Alarm set for 3:30, we woke up, launched the boat at 4am, at the honey hole by 5, where we were shook for the first 10 minutes when not even a bite, a surface, nothing happened…what the heck was going on?  Jake threw a top water way up into a stupid shallow area filled with pencil reeds…boom, yup the smallies were still chillin on the beds…oh boy this was gonna be fun. Half an hours work with the heddon spook and the megabass giant dog x


What a day

The evening brought out some more decent ones


My dog was loving the weather


I was loving the fishing


Got my second g bay musky (still waiting for that real G bay 50 incher, this year i plan on giving it a really honest shot)


the fishing was just too good, this particular evening we didn’t move more than a few hundred meters we hit a pile of smallies, a 5.5lb walleye, a musky and 3 good pike, we got so satisfied with catching we went looking for a cool place to take photos, we instead came across a really cool mansion/cottage that included a guest house the size of a 5 bedroom home, a bridge across their own cordoned off bay, as well as a boat house that was shaped like a giant wedge that was bigger than a house. We took our photos and went home early having caught to our satisfaction





More time on the water was had. The trophies fishing team and I have started using a few higher end baits, what that means is something when you stupidly cast into trees or snag, you end up having to run up on shore to get your lures back. Heres me yelling at jake to mush while he paddles us out of one particular snag


Ive got a video of me swimming for a lure that I snagged as well, that’s what happens when you charge $30 for a hard bait lol

Jake has started to get into swimbaiting a bit too for bass…although they seem to just catch big pike lol


Our buddy Dave came up and joined us the next day and we decided to target largies…we found them off of the weed edges near where they had spanwed, and bam dave slapped a top secret 5 and a half pound largie…that far north…yup


That evening we went chasing more smallies…we made a vow to literally fish new grounds every trip from there on out never fishing anywhere I had even thrown a cast before…we caught some, struggled a bit at times, but struggle is relative, we were catching, just not at the rate of the double and even triple…yes triple headers (we had two this week) that we had been getting.

Heres a pic of our best double header


One evening we tried to keep track but lost count somewhere in the 60 bass range…ya 60 smallies in one evening trip…it was like shooting fish in a barrel. I love nights like this because you can take a set up that you may not have the most confidence with, but throw it and get bit and get a feel for it. For me, I am starting to get into squarebills on the crankbait rod, and sure enough I landed a bunch using this new set up. Channeling my inner KVD, smacking smallies on the squarebill.

One particular evening far from home base in new water I said “ok boys lets pack up I don’t want to get stuck out here in unknown water at night”, threw one last cast with the giant dog x and nailed the biggest smallie of the trip


The next day we tried yet another spot, hit a triple header again…but this particular night we were struggling a little to find that solid size…once again I said boys lets pack her up and head in for some grub, threw one last cast with the megabass giant dog x again and book another piggy. Buzzer beaters were becoming the pattern.


Another day…more fish


Another new area fished and sure enough I hook into by far the biggest bass of my life, I fight it boat side it makes a run I bring back to the boat, it goes ballistic and I lose it…that’s just how things go isn’t it? I screamed at the top of my lungs, swore up and down…the fish gods heard me I think…because we filled the livewells in quick succession…thank god because if we didn’t I may have sank the boat right then and there


A week of hammering bass and whatever else in the books, my bass thumb was nasty.



But damn was it worth it…I can honestly say Sunday afternoon after 9 consecutive days on the water logging hours I was satisfied…but its now Wednesday and you can damn well bet, I wanna go fishing again.

Thanks for reading, im outty till fall









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I haven't read much yet, I just wanted to say thanks for the winter pics. If anyone tells me tomorrow "Man it's hot out" I am going to show them those winter wonderland photos.

I worked the better part of my career on and in Blast Furnaces, you don't know hot my dear Madam.


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19 hours ago, OhioFisherman said:

 and some of my friends get them 5+ pounds on the French River.

im very very protective of that fishery...yes im aware of the irony of posting pics but i wouldnt dare ever show a single detail of where I am fishing them...They can be caught but you really really have to know where to look. The spots that have em, have lots and with good size, but at the same time those spots are contained...the strangest part though is that these fish are extremely variable...like they are either in the slop or they arent, its nothing like the kawarthas where if you fish pads you will always find a few largies kicking around no matter what. Its feast for famine. 

18 hours ago, Old Ironmaker said:

I haven't read much yet, I just wanted to say thanks for the winter pics. If anyone tells me tomorrow "Man it's hot out" I am going to show them those winter wonderland photos.

I worked the better part of my career on and in Blast Furnaces, you don't know hot my dear Madam.


not a job for me, i like the cold...i have self diagnosed rynauds syndrome so my hands hate it as soon as its below +10..but the rest of my body? phhh i must be a manitoba boy, I spend time fishing outside at -30 and never have an issue aside from my stupid hands.

3 hours ago, zenon11 said:

Wow, super jealous over here!

im lucky, very very lucky to have a permanent place at my disposal at what i would argue is literally one of the best freshwater fisheries in the entire world. Yes the far far north has untouched lakes, but the diversity of G bay is what makes it special. To count we caught 8 different species of fish that week alone. Total I think weve caught over 12 different types of fish in one area...thats unheard of.

2 hours ago, PUMP KNOWS said:

That lake with a forest in it looks crazy!  Thanks for sharing. 

A big part of fishing for me is not just catching fish, i like to explore and fish beautiful interesting places. (fishing lake erie anyone? yawnnn) great youve got 6lb smallmouth...id take the humps and bumps of Gbay over sitting in wide open field jigging bass any day.

Marion is a friggin treat...its so different, so cool and everything you could ever imagine from fishing the deep south.

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 my wallet had literally got completely soaked during one of the heaviest downpours I had ever seen in my entire life that afternoon

Great read Scott 

I fished a Pro/Am on Erie. The skies opened up for 30 minutes. Total down pour. All I could do was stand still and let the rain pelt on me. My wallet was full of drenched bills. There was water where I thought water never could get. LOL

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6 hours ago, PUMP KNOWS said:

That lake with a forest in it looks crazy!  Thanks for sharing. 

Pump, I believe Reelfoot Lake on the Tennessee - Missouri border has them too, it was formed by an earthquake on the New Madrid fault an the Mississippi river flowed the wrong way?

LOL, always viewed the main lake area of Erie as a watery desert with fish and the same boring scenery forever.

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Great read. I am jealous as well. You guys slayed em'. I do have 1 word of wisdom through experience. Get something on your feet or whomever it is barefoot. Nothing like ruining  a great trip because someone got a hook in a foot. Especially with a carpeted floor on  a boat old rusty hooks hide just waiting to attack an unsuspecting foot. Been there done that. 2 of us lost an entire day to drive 2 hours each way to get a shot as they wouldn't treat my buddy at a Rez's 1st aid station, another story for another time. Every fall I find nasty rusted hooks buried in the carpet.

Not as bad as sitting on  3 triple trebles though.

Edited by Old Ironmaker
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20 hours ago, jerpears1 said:

I am am loving the lake in South Carolina. Think i’m Going to have to add it to my bucket list. 

Kentucky lake, guntersville, okachobee all had their heyday...marion has been the little secret that has held up...mainly due to the lack of development on it and secondarily due to the complete lack of safe navigation. Trust me, you cant drive the "charted lines" i took a run through the "river channel" its not friggin safe at all, its full of deadheads and timber. I was lucky that my local buddy thats been on the lake for 30 years let me follow him from north to south...scary as hell too, we were WOT following him in his 21 foot triton 250...following him blindly it was a little unnerving seeing stumps 5 feet off of the side of the boat going 50mph lol. Ive got solid drive lines saved on my unit now though!

19 hours ago, misfish said:

My wallet was full of drenched bills. There was water where I thought water never could get. LOL

We got caught up in the swamp when the rain came...it was so heavy that our surroundings kind of just disappeared. I turned on the bilge and even with it running full blast we ended up with 3 inches of water on the floor...thats where my phone and wallet were lol. It then didnt help that we kept getting periodic rain and extreme humidity all week. Nothing wanted to dry off.

18 hours ago, OhioFisherman said:


LOL, always viewed the main lake area of Erie as a watery desert with fish and the same boring scenery forever.

exactly...whats there to look at? sand shoreline?

16 hours ago, Old Ironmaker said:

 Every fall I find nasty rusted hooks buried in the carpet.


is your carpt not snagless? you are definitely right...but you gotta start cleaning your boat more :P

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