Take a Kid Fishing
August 28, 2013
Isabelle & her son Justin were with me this morning on another flat, calm outing. We got rolling around 8:00 and proceeded to an area to try for a variety of species. With the lack of wind, I knew we were in for a tough bite and that the bugs would be insane. The floating weeds weren’t much fun either as I had to constantly monitor the rods. I had my work cut out for me today! Once the lines were set, we trolled around looking for takers and had a quick bite from a bass. Well, the reel didn’t go off but the fish took to the air, throwing the lure instantly. The next fish was a northern of about 4 or 5 pounds and Justin finally had his first fish of the day. Although not what I was really after, it was welcomed nonetheless as we were struggling under these conditions. The morning cloud cover should have had most fish on the prowl, but it seemed to have the opposite effect with several short strikers getting off instantly. I tried deeper, shallower and everything in between, but suffered with the results. We did however manage to land one legal walleye trolling and at least they had that to go home with. I knew that if they were going to have a meal, I would have to change things up and relocate. A few perch, a couple of short walleye and several lost fish on the strike wouldn’t feed a family of five. The morning cloud cover had given way to clear skies & the bright sunshine turned the day into a scorcher. By afternoon, it would get even worse! I can honestly say that this would prove to be one of the top three days of the summer, for heat & humidity. We took a quick shore break mid day and stretched, allowing me the time to instruct Justin on casting techniques. Our afternoon would be one without trolling as the flat water required a change up. We would be casting instead and starting on smallies. With a little fine tuning, it didn’t take long before Justin was making decent casts and it showed. He had a pick up on a senko that resulted in a hookup and now he was battling his first bass. Although it did take him all over the place, he handled it well and eventually came to the net. This completed his “Grand Slam” for the day, but it wasn’t over yet. We relocated again for more walleye when the bass just followed the baits, showing very little interest. Even they felt the lack of flow in the current and refused the slowest bait we could fish. I had another area near by that might just turn this day around and headed there with high hopes. We would all be throwing jigs to entice the walleye and hopefully able to put a few more in the livewell. Justin’s casting had escaladed into a distance thing now and I had to teach him a little control. Too far would mean weeds here and he needed to be right on he edge. Once he got the hang of it he began to hook a few, adding to the livewell and their dinner. Isabelle was slowly working the jig in the back of the boat and finally hooked one of her own. It looked like a good walleye by the bend in the rod and I was pretty sure it wouldn’t make the cut. Sure enough, it measured over 22 inches and although worthy of a few pics, needed to be returned. We went on a little rally for a period and managed to put a limit of fish in the boat. Several short ones were also released and Justin had taken a few of them too! When it really went dead I decided to try a little more trolling, just to see if things had changed. Well, it didn’t take long before we had our answer as a reel screamed and Justin was into another good walleye. We managed to get one more and pulled the plug for the day, after another northern came aboard. We had endured the 80 plus temps & high humidity, lack of fish cooperation and nasty “Dog Pecker Knats” long enough. Regardless of all these disadvantages, today was a successful one and Justin passed “Fishing 101”! He had also landed perch, pike, walleye & bass and was contributing to tonight’s dinner. I hope that he continues to fish on his own from shore, keeping the desire going. Taking a kid fishing is a good thing but by teaching them to fish, it only increases the interest to continue on their own. Hopefully his passion for this sport will be contagious and become a family affair. I’m sure his mother would like nothing better as today brought back memories from her past. All in all, “A Great Day for Fishing”!!