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Evinrude White
The Search Continues: Walleye & Pike in Saskatchewan

The Search Continues: Walleye & Pike in Saskatchewan

The Search Continues: Walleye & Pike in Saskatchewan         Locating fish on new and different types of lakes can be challenging. What works on your usual fishing holes, more times than not, won’t be as productive on unknown lakes. Not all lakes are created equal and this couldn’t be more true than in Saskatchewan. Boasting 68 different species of fish, inhabiting more than 100,000 lakes in Saskatchewan, the differences are as vast as the province itself. My “home” lake is a man made reservoir that was once a river system. It now holds an abundance of walleye, pike and perch. This flooded river channel provides exceptional habitat for these fish as well as their forage.   The southern Saskatchewan lakes I frequent range in depth from 0-60ft with my typical target depths from 6-30ft. More often than not, the middle range of these depths is the sweet spot for the longest period of time through the winter, which is about 12-24ft. Locating fish with extreme differences in structure and depth can be challenging especially on a reservoir lake. Drilling a hole in one spot at 18 feet of water, then taking two steps and drilling another hole and being in 35ft can be a challenge, but also rewarding when these close proximities of depths are available. Typically, when you find yourself in this situation, you have hit the old river channel and this can be a productive spot at certain times of day and year.          Timing is everything   We all know that fish move around, but knowing when and where they will end up,... read more

The Search Continues: Walleye & Pike in Saskatchewan

The Search Continues: Walleye & Pike in Saskatchewan         Locating fish on new and different types of lakes can be challenging. What works on your usual fishing holes, more times than not, won’t be as productive on unknown lakes. Not all lakes are created equal and this couldn’t be more true than in Saskatchewan. Boasting 68 different species of fish, inhabiting more than 100,000 lakes in Saskatchewan, the differences are as vast as the province itself. My “home” lake is a man made reservoir that was once a river system. It now holds an abundance of walleye, pike and perch. This flooded river channel provides exceptional habitat for these fish as well as their forage.   The southern Saskatchewan lakes I frequent range in depth from 0-60ft with my typical target depths from 6-30ft. More often than not, the middle range of these depths is the sweet spot for the longest period of time through the winter, which is about 12-24ft. Locating fish with extreme differences in structure and depth can be challenging especially on a reservoir lake. Drilling a hole in one spot at 18 feet of water, then taking two steps and drilling another hole and being in 35ft can be a challenge, but also rewarding when these close proximities of depths are available. Typically, when you find yourself in this situation, you have hit the old river channel and this can be a productive spot at certain times of day and year.          Timing is everything   We all know that fish move around, but knowing when and where they will end up,...

Permanent Ice Shack Tactics!

  Ice fishing has progressed substantially from what it was when I first started to what it is today. Growing up sitting on a 5-gallon pail in the blistering cold blindly waiting for a fish to strike and the opportunity to pull it through a hole in the frozen lake. Now today as I’m comfortably sitting on a couch in a t shirt watching the hockey game on TV at the same time pulling fish through a seemingly similar hole in the ice but from the comfort of my permanent ice house. Ice house, ice shack, hut, shanty, or permanent house just like the many names for these structures on the hard water there are many types. From scrap wood thrown together to form a floor, four walls and a roof to luxury camper style houses on wheels that lower onto the ice. Whatever size, shape, or style they are designed to keep you out of the elements, warm, comfortable, easy set up and moved onto the lake and remain until spring arrives and the ice starts to melt. A permanent shack is a great option when you don’t want to spend your whole day punching hundreds of holes and setting up multiple times while battling the elements. With the introduction of pop up shelters and “run and gun” style of ice fishing vs sit and wait there has been much debate over levels of success with these two styles. While my pop up shelter gets a workout throughout the ice fishing season I can’t argue my success and comfort when fishing in my permanent ice shack. Sometimes it’s...

Ice Fishing in Kawarthas Northumberland

Now that the colder weather seems to be settling in for the winter, I can’t help but recall the questions I had when I first began ice fishing. The Kawarthas Northumberland region is an ice angler’s paradise! So many species! So little time it seems. The frozen lakes provide an exciting and affordable way to get into the sport of ice fishing. Not only is it a great avenue for new anglers to explore, it truly is a terrific opportunity to spend time with family and friends during the winter months. Ice fishing can appear intimidating to a new comer. My best advice is to never go alone. Be sure to go with someone that is knowledgeable when it comes to ice safety and exercise caution at all times. With a few key factors in mind you are in for a great experience. Dress Accordingly Dressing for the elements is one of the most important parts of an enjoyable ice fishing trip. I always tend to overdress. That has never left me feeling cold which would take away from the experience dramatically. I recommend a thermal flotation suit. Not only are they very warm, but in the event that you were to go through the ice you have flotation to your benefit but this is certainly not a necessity. A good pair of thermal wind proof pants and a warm jacket will suffice. I will generally wear a balaclava to cover my head, face and neck while in transit to and from the area we are fishing. I like this for two reasons. I am completely covered and warm when I...

Late Fall Crappie Fishing

Late Fall Crappie Fishing Unseasonably warm weather in the Kawarthas this fall has really opened up opportunities for the “not so hardcore” angler to take advantage of some of the best fishing of the season without having to brave the elements. This time of year typically requires the angler to wear the thermal gear. Not the case so far! There is plenty of open water fishing still to be had and all species are biting exceptionally well in preparation for winter. The region offers a multitude of angling opportunities and species to target. An often overlooked or underrated fishery present is that of the black Crappie. Not only are they present in the region in high numbers, but also in trophy size! A fish of 15” is notuncommon, especially this time of the year. Not to mention they are considered one of the best eating fish available. While they are not as tightly grouped in schools during the fall as they are during the spring spawning season, once located they are not difficult to entice. There are a few essentials that you’ll need to get started. A lake map or mapping device that includes the bottom contours of the lake that you will be fishing. This is imperative as we are looking for staging areas that these fish will hold to. Specifically we are looking for the first major “basin” adjacent to the spawning grounds. Nine times out of ten the bottom type will be a soft mud. All of the baitfish in the area will migrate to this bottom type in search of food and as such the Crappie...

Product Review: Huskie Muskie Leaders

Date: 11/1/16 Product type: Leaders Manufacturer: Huskie Musky Leaders Reviewer: Alex Meletis Huskie Muskie Leaders is wholly owned by Bill Fuller, and is located in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. As a member of Muskies Canada, Bill is a firm believer of catch and release.  The way we handle muskies and the equipment we use are important in ensuring live releases.  As a result, He had come to realize that good strong leaders are as essential as a good landing net and the proper tools for releasing a fish once caught.  We pay good money for our lures and do not leave them on an underwater obstruction, or heaven forbid in the mouth of a Muskie, because the weak link was a leader. About ten years ago He was unable to find any quality leaders in the Ottawa area.  As a result He began researching and experimenting with different materials and leader building methods.  Most of the really good information He found was on various salt water sites, written by those who were fishing for game much larger than muskies  His general conclusion was, that if these materials and building methods could stand up to battles with some of the largest fish to be found in the sea, they would stand up to the rigors of fighting and landing muskies. Bill started with trolling leaders using hard mono but after He discovered the ANDE fluorocarbon, He never went back.  He learned that crimping, done properly, was every bit as strong as knots if not stronger, but more importantly, it would provide strong loops more consistently than knots, especially with this thickness of fluorocarbon material.  He also learned the importance of loop protectors and how they...

Fishing Spinnerbaits Like Deep Diving Crankbaits for Fall Muskies

Fall Muskie fishing is my favorite time of the year. Chasing giants in cold water paired with some of the most extreme conditions can be oh so rewarding.   That being said the fall season is generally the time to put away the fast action reaction type baits and transition to the big slow moving targets. For most that means big hunks of rubber upwards of 1 lb in weight and 20” in length. Or trolling large crankbaits over deep water. That is after all what tends to produce results this time of year, and that is what the Muskie elders have instructed us to do. I too have fallen into this mindset during the cold water period, but something happened this past weekend that reminded me of a few techniques I have had success with and have changed my perspective.   This weekend’s trip started out as most do in the fall. Water temps in the high 40’s and large profile, slow moving baits latched on in hopes of a giant fall Muskie. I found myself fishing with two very old friends, one of which also happens to be a Muskie nut. The other.. Not so much.   Not 10 mins into the trip I moved a BIG fish on my Beaver. She was hot in pursuit, gills flaring fins wriggling.. Looking like a taker only to slowly saunter off at the last second as she approached the boat. Not two casts later she did the exact same thing only to hang directly below the boat giving us a really good look at her before she swam back to the depths. My...

The Next Big Thing in Muskie and Pike Fishing

            Muskie fishing is not for the faint of heart. It is not generally a numbers game and requires A LOT of time on the water to develop the knowledge and grit that it takes to wrangle these monsters with consistency.  This is not something that is easily explained or described.  I can still remember the first Muskie I ever caught! I was 12 years old.  And although the fish was not big, the pure adrenaline rush and sense of accomplishment that I experienced during and after the battle changed me forever.  They are such a majestic and unique predator.  Fooling them takes skill. And putting them in the net takes talent. Today’s Muskie angler is far better equipped that yester years. The rods, reels, line and tackle options are endless. Not to mention new and productive techniques that have continually bettered our odds of success.  We now handle and release the fish in a much safer manner as well. Respecting the resource through knowledge and in turn these beautiful monsters continue to thrive. Over the years I have witnessed the development and success of many fantastic fish catching baits. Some of which were more of a novelty item than they were productive.  It pains me to give this one away.. But I have come across a very unique bait that has once again changed my Muskie fishing world. And I am certain that the Muskie community as a whole will feel the same once they see and experience this thing in action.   During November 2015 I came across a very unique looking...

Top 5 Fall Fishing Destinations in the Kawartha’s Northumberland

Top 5 Fall Fishing Destinations The angling opportunities available year round are simply astounding. The fall is a special time of year, however, and the scenery is simply breathtaking. With so many fishing destinations with over 350 lakes and rivers to choose from, here are my Top 5 Fall MUST fish locations. Number 5–High Falls Photo Courtesy of Ontario Travel GPS Coordinates: 44.588126, -78.070699 Put your canoe or aluminum boat in Eels Creek off Northeys Bay Road and head north to the High Falls. The scenery is breathtaking and the fishing is top notch as well! Bring your Muskie tackle because this stretch is chalk full of fish! Inline bucktail spinners and 6-8” crank baits imitating the cyprinid forage throughout the river will provide great success for anglers of all levels. Number 4–Lovesick Lake GPS Coordinates: 44.555582, -78.203433 This little hideaway is tucked between Lower Buckhorn Lake and Stoney Lake. The beautiful rocky forested shorelines to please the victors eye. An often overlooked stretch of the Trent-Severn Waterway that is absolutely loaded with Bass, Muskie, Walleye, Crappie and several other panfish species. Bring your arsenal because this little beauty has trophy fish in all of the above mentioned species. Put your boat in at the launch directly across from the Burleigh Falls Inn and joy the beautiful scenery this lake has to offer while catching your next Kawartha Legend. Number 3–Burnt River GPS Coordinates: 44.776225,-78.6844606 Launch your boat in Kinmount and make your way up the river. If you have a small boat or canoe, walk it down below the dam in Kinmount and make your way down stream. Be prepared to portage a few narrow sections...

Big Tubes For Big Muskies!!

I have been targeting Muskies for as long as I can remember. During the early years my typical approach was not much different from many other anglers today. I placed a great deal of emphasis on speed and flash to catch the majority of my fish. Bucktails,spinnerbaits and hard jerk baits. Very common in our Muskie tackle world, and they undoubtedly produce results on a regular basis. What else do you need, right? I am a born and raised Kawartha’s Northumberland region native. I target just about everything that swims in this area, and in doing so, I have come across a few techniques and baits that were not intended to be used for certain species, but are extremely effective in catching them. I love to catch Smallmouth Bass. They are, in my opinion one of the most powerful freshwater fish on the planet. While targeting Smallies, I spend a good portion of my time dragging baits on the bottom. In a lot of instances the bait of choice is a tube. While a Tube has been a very effective bait for many of us while targeting Smallmouth, I catch an alarming amount of Muskies fishing them in this manner as well! So many, that it became quite clear to me that this was an approach that was not only unique, in that most were not catching Muskies this way, but extremely effective in producing numbers and quality fish! During this period there were really no options on the market that offered a Muskie sized version of my bass tubes. Or at least I was unable to locate any...

The Fall Smallmouth Hunt

Here we are, at the height of the fall transition when temperatures drop, nights are longer and lakes begin to turn over. This is truly the time of year you can run into some really large smallmouth, but where do you look and what do you throw at them? Smallmouth can be fickle and very elusive during the fall. Some anglers use the old cliché to describe the search for these bronze bass as finding “a needle in a haystack”. Smallmouth will often travel in larger and often, tighter schools during this change in season which makes them more difficult to locate. But once located, what you find will inject a shot of adrenaline into your veins for sure. One major change in smallmouth behavior during the fall is that they often become less dependent on crustaceans (crayfish) and are more apt to key in on baitfish. Depending where you are located, baitfish such as shad or shiners (or whatever the main forage is in your neck of the woods is) will school up and begin some sort of migration to stage upon potential spawning grounds, wintering spots and so on. Once this takes place smallmouth will in turn school up, thus stalking said baitfish. Something to note is that although baitfish are inevitably at their largest in size, they can still be easily digested which works out because as water temperatures drop rapidly, the metabolism of bass will slow down. Now, obviously this seasonal change brings cold nights, which cools the haunts indicative of smallmouth bass so mornings will become a less productive time to chase them. As...

Product Review: Lake Fork Trophy Lures Para Helium FluoroHybrid FH line

 Date: Sept 27 2016 Product type: Fishing line Manufacturer: Lake Fork Trophy Lures Reviewer: Jamie Wilson   As anglers we are very lucky to have super advanced modern technologies at our disposal, one such advancement definitely being fishing line. A fine example of this modern evolution is fluorocarbon coated copolymer (inner core) hybrid line. This marriage of materials in a fishing line gives us yet another choice, which exhibits key attributes and performance qualities found in both line types rolled into one. Recently, I had the opportunity to field test Lake Fork Trophy Lures Para Helium FluoroHybrid FH and I was not disappointed in its performance.         (Lake Fork Trophy Lures Para Helium FluoroHybrid FH) Specifications Type Fishing Line Material Fluorocarbon/Copolymer (inner core) Hybrid Colors Clear Origin Texas, USA MSRP $18.99 US funds/10lb, price varies according to test strength       The key variables here are the properties of this line that sets this hybrid apart from monofilament, 100% fluorocarbon and strait copolymer. Having the castability of monofilament and the abrasion resistance of fluorocarbon while maintaining sensitivity, manageability and knot strength of copolymer makes for a well-rounded fishing line. Lake Fork Trophy Lures’ version has all of these attributes in equal parts. From its ultra-smooth castability and low stretch to its very sensitive feel coupled with very low memory and impeccable knot strength/durability, FluorHybrid FH Para Helium get top honors from me. Also, this line has low-vis properties as well which, I would assume is difficult to achieve in a copolymer inner core/fluoro coated line so top marks to the designers once again.     Castability(1-5)...

The Chinook Salmon Run: Rattle Their Chains

  Well here we are. As I write this, the fall equinox is upon us as we wave goodbye to summer. It is a bittersweet time as we trade our shorts and flip flops for sweaters and jeans. That is the bitter, but what is sweet you ask? This transition into fall means that tributaries and staging grounds along the Great Lakes fill up with aggressive, mature Chinook Salmon. The Chinook (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) The Chinook Salmon, otherwise known as Spring, King, Tyee and Quinnat are the largest species in the Pacific Salmon genus. These fish reach maturity in three to seven years and ultimately return to the very same areas in tributaries where they were hatched. The Chinook run/spawn takes place during fall between about mid-September to mid-November in a temperature range of approximately 10 to 3 degrees Celsius. As Chinook begin this migration to their spawning grounds, they make a stop at what is described as “staging grounds”. Some examples include rocky piers and break walls adjacent to the tributaries and river mouths they will relate to and thus, run to spawn sites. This is a perfect opportunity to target them as they will be easy to find and predict and will be but a casting distance from urban shoreline structures and harbors near preferred habitat for procreation. Presentation This is a fascinating time for any angler as giant Chinook are within reach for an, albeit short but very exciting period of time. If you have chased Chinook during this time period you know the staple presentations such as skein (eggs), spoons (my favorite being Little Cleo), jerkbaits...

Late Autumn to Ice‐Up Fishing

Late Autumn to Ice‐Up Fishing Fall fishing in the Kawartha’s Northumberland Region is one of my favorite times of the season. Not only is the fishing spectacular, but the sheer beauty and fall colors have made their appearance in full. The leaves have turned and begun to fall. The nights are cooler, the air is crisp and the fish are feeding up in preparation for winter. For myself personally, this is the time to focus my efforts on trophy Muskies and Smallmouth Bass. These two species are without question my favorite target from mid-September right through to ice up. Why you might ask? Well the answer is this. Not only are they aggressively feeding during this time, but they are much more likely to be susceptible to simple angling techniques in areas that are much more obvious and easier to access. I keep my techniques very simple during this time and the results are always very good. When targeting Smallmouth Bass from late September through November my approach is simple. During this period the fish within the region tend to school up on shallow rocky points extending out from the shoreline. Points close to deep water. Fall equals BIG smallies. Fish at this time of year feed heavily on crayfish and minnows in preparation for the cold winter months. I always start my search right on the bank in as little as a foot of water. Early morning “walk the dog” style topwater baits are a great option. I will fish them very slowly and in a color pattern resembling the local forage. In most cases white will do...

Product Review: Smith Dover Sunglasses

Date: 9/14/16 Product type: Sunglasses Manufacturer: Smith Optics Reviewer: Jamie Wilson             I remember the first time that I looked into the water through a pair of polarized sunglasses. I couldn’t believe just how much I was seeing and more importantly, what I wasn’t seeing until that day. I went through countless pairs of cheap shades thinking I had it all figured out, until I finally made the leap to a high-end quality pair of lenses/frames. This game changer came in the form of Smith Optics “Dover” Rx with the industry leading polarized lens technology, ChromaPop. These lenses make me feel as if I am an eagle in the sky spotting fish and their hiding spots while protecting my eyes and looking super stylish to boot.       (Smith Optics Dover Rx) Specifications Type Polarized prescription sunglasses Colors Black, Havana (tortoise shell) Origin USA MSRP $499 CDN     Quality is so important. I mean really, would you want 10 pairs of shades in as many years? I know I want a product to stand the test of time and continue to hold up to the rigors of the outdoors for as long as I take care of them. Spending the money on quality will never backfire on anyone, which I say with obvious confidence when I speak of my Smith Optics Dover Rx polarized sunglasses. Finish(1-5) Hardware(1-5) Craftsmanship(1-5) Total Possible Rating (10 being highest ) 5 5 5 15 15 9.5     The first thing that I noticed was how ultra-lightweight Smith Optics truly are. When I picked up the protective case I...

Product Review: Lake Fork Tackle HYPER STICK

Date: 9/13/16 Product type: Stick worm Manufacturer: Lake Fork Trophy Lures Reviewer: Jamie Wilson           Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know that one of the best fish catching baits over the last 10-15 years has been the mighty stick worm. In this day in age, there are seemingly hundreds of companies that produce good quality stick worms so what sets a particular manufacturer apart? Well, in the case of Lake Fork Trophy Lures “Hyper Sticks” one design feature definitely stands out, and that is their very unique segmented body (“swim slots” patent pending). This feature makes the Hyper Stick versatile as they can be fished as a weightless presentation, wacky rigged, Texas rig, Carolina rig or a perfect drop shot worm. 21 colors to choose from at a great price and what you have is a viable bass tempting option for sure.     (Lake Fork Trophy Lures “Hyper Stick”) Specifications Type Soft plastic stick worm Length 5” Weight N/A Material Plastic Colors 21 colors Origin Texas, USA MSRP $5.49 U.S per pack(9)     As I mentioned, Lake Fork Trophy Lures offers a fantastic color selection which covers just about every variation you need for your favorite body of water. Besides the colors, the fine detail and craftsmanship the “Hyper Stick” offers up is high end all the way. It is apparent that a lot of time, effort and thought went into the end product that only benefits the angler and not just the pocket books of the manufacturer. Obviously these worms were designed for anglers by anglers and that’s that.  ...

Fall Fishing in the Kawartha’s

August and September can be one of the best times of the year to catch BIG fish in the Kawartha’s Northumberland region.  As we reach the end of August and the days start to shorten. The nights a little cooler and the leaves begin to change so does the trigger for our native fish species to feed! And feed a lot!  Not only is everything seemingly hungry, but locations and patterns start to change as well. As the days shorten and temperatures reduce the aquatic vegetation follows suit and will start to deteriorate to the point where the fish will no longer use it as cover. Largemouth bass in the region will now start to seek out what healthy green weeds remain. In most instances Milfoil is preferred. It provides a higher oxygen content creating a place for the panfish to hide which in turn attracts the Bass. Its root system holds the bottom in place, which holds phosphorus in place as well. It will also improve water clarity making it easier for the bass to ambush. The shallow water vegetation is the first to go and in most cases the healthy green weeds will be in deeper more stable water temperatures.  8-10′ is a depth I like to target when seeking out healthy vegetation that may hold Largemouth this time of year and the presence of bluegill and other panfish are a sure bet that you are in the right area.  Once you find them they will be there in high numbers! Shallow water can still be a very productive option this time of year as well. Overhead cover...
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