Dave had contacted me yesterday, in hopes that I might have something open for today. As luck would have it, this was the only day available for the week and he settled on the afternoon with his son. Mathieu was only 6 years old but showed a great interest in fishing. They had been on vacation last week on a beautiful lake and fished whenever they could from their canoe. Although the bite wasn’t great, they still had a good time. I knew that after today, he would be hooked for life!

We met up around 11:30 and headed out, not knowing exactly where I was gong to fish. This time I was unsure because of all the boats fishing where I wanted to start and decided to make a long run when I passed the occupied areas. We were going to troll instead and I knew the little guy would have a blast reeling in the fish. With the lines in, I began covering water under the overcast skies, knowing that we would get bit soon. As luck would have it, the first reel to fire was the short line and Mathieu was into a nice big walleye. With the aid of his dad, he was able to reel in the biggest fish of his life, so far! This fish was way over the slot and after several good pics, released unharmed. What a great starter fish for the day! We regrouped, continuing our troll and a few pike later, another reel fired hard. I knew by the sound exactly what it was once again! Mathieu was into another big eye and although slightly smaller than his first one, still way over the slot. He was only 6 years old and had already managed to reel in 2 walleye bigger than his dad had ever caught. Several pics later we resumed trolling and this time I began covering water to see if we could get into more fish. By moving around I was able to monopolize on all the scattered fish and trigger some of them into biting. At one point, I actually landed a small musky while checking the lines and was happy to see one of this size. I just had to take a quick pic before letting it go! With several more pike under his belt, I decided to make one more pass in the area for walleye and Mathieu managed to finally reel in a keeper walleye that immediately went into the livewell. This would give him something to do and occupy some of the down time we were having. Eventually after a few more passes however, another reel fired hard and thoughts of a big eye once again entered my mind. This one seemed even larger than Mathieu’s first one and fought much better than most. He struggled to bring it to net but eventually was able to land another monster. This little guy had somehow managed to catch 3 beautiful golden walleye and he was only 6 years old! After this fish, I decided to pull the plug on trolling and try another area for some bass..

We arrived at a smallmouth spot and I instructed them on how to present the baits correctly. I had to show Mathieu how to cast the spinning outfit as he was only use to a spin cast reel before. With only a few minutes under his belt, he was now casting great. Too bad the fish weren’t cooperating as we only had a couple of bites here. We probably would have had more, but were overrun by paddle boarders that figured it was alright to just park where we were fishing. To make matters worse, they decided to do Yoga on their boards and block us out completely! We had no other choice but to change locations and leave!

The last stop of the day was where I had wanted to start, but was glad I hadn’t. We had definitely made the right choice by trolling! This time however, they were going to try drop shotting a flat in deeper water. First drop with the little guy I felt a tick and set into a nice smallie for him to fight. This one really tested him as it just didn’t want to come in. Eventually I slid the net under the fish and he now had 3 species landed for the day. A few pics later we resumed the drift and managed to boat some small eyes and another nice smallie before we were done. It was over and had passed by so fast. Although a little disappointed we were finished, Mathieu was thrilled to have caught so many big fish today. He had really gotten the fishing bug, seeing so many fish in only a few short hours. It’s always nice to introduce children into fishing at such a young age. This way they will have a lifetime ahead of them to enjoy the sport and hopefully pass it along to their own children. What a great half day on the water today!