Sunday, November 16, 2008

Weird and Wacky Walleye Fishing

fishing spot Red Lake, Ontario
I've already written about the tremendous walleye fishing we had on Red Lake, Ontario, last season but there is still a lot to mention including some of the strangest walleye phenomena I have ever seen.

Like the father and son who had picked up what looked like rubber snakes at a fishing show near home the previous winter and thought they might catch a big northern pike at Bow Narrows Camp.

These things were big, maybe 14 inches long, and floated. They had a realistic swimming motion when retrieved.

I've never seen a pike eat a snake but I'm sure they would. They will eat just about anything that moves. In cleaning thousands of pike over the years we have found ducks, warblers, mice, muskrats and even a mink in their stomachs.

So I felt they stood a good chance at picking up some pike on the rubber snakes. They actually weren't called snakes. Maybe they were eels; anyway, they looked like snakes.

When I saw the pair of anglers later in the day and asked how they did, they had caught a 26-inch walleye on these contraptions! Incredible!

A couple of other fishermen were fishing below the rapids shown in the photo above. Due to all the rain early last summer our lake was much higher than in this photo and the creek had tons of water rushing down it.

It looked possible that a fish could actually swim from the lake right up into the creek and these fishermen hypothesized that northern pike might be up there.

So they put on 4-inch red-and-white dardevles (actually northern pike here prefer smaller ones, see Lighten Up) and anchoring their boat right below the rapids, cast as far up the creek as they could, right in between the trees seen in this photo.

And they caught walleyes!

The same feat was repeated a month later by a couple of other anglers.

The walleye bite was so tremendous most of last summer that you could easily have caught all the walleyes you wanted right off the dock. Often times it wasn't even necessary to use bait.

We had one group who would bring their rods to the lodge before breakfast each day and catch and release a dozen or so walleyes before it was time to eat.

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