Top 5 Fall Fishing Destinations in the Kawartha’s Northumberland

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... read more
The Fall Smallmouth Hunt

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

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)... read more
Late Autumn to Ice‐Up Fishing

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... read more
Product Review: Smith Dover Sunglasses

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... read more
Product Review: Lake Fork Tackle HYPER STICK

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.  ... read more
Fall Fishing in the Kawartha’s

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... read more
Hot Summer Bass Tactics!

Hot Summer Bass Tactics!

Hot Summer Tactics To say this has been a hot summer is an understatement. With countless scorching days along with little rain, this bass season has truly been a grind for many anglers. Low water levels, high water temperatures and nothing but sunny days means tough, hard to predict fishing right? Well, not really. Are bass easy to predict? Yes. Are they less than agreeable? Kinda. Don’t cuss me out just yet. At this point of the season there are a few key variables that make for a seemingly difficult equation to solve for the best of anglers. Really, the variables or unknowns are where and when do these ghost-like fish show up? Feeding windows become dramatically shortened and strike zones shrink which can make for a pretty frustrating day on the water. Smallmouth will suspend at various depths in relation to the thermolcline (a steep temperature gradient marked by a layer above and below which the water is at different temperatures) and where the forage they are targeting are located. Their green cousins, largemouth bass, can be found on deep weedlines, under trees, docks or buried beneath undercut banks. Now, we are talking about mid-day, but what about dusk periods? What about cloudy days with a falling barometer? Put that stuff on the backburner for a moment. These are the dog days of summer so just focus on the things you can control. As smallmouth “suspend” does that mean they aren’t oriented to the bottom? No – not at all. One great tactic right now is dragging on bottom. This is a great option because you can cover... read more
Cover All Depths: Breaking down water columns to locate Bass.

Cover All Depths: Breaking down water columns to locate Bass.

Cover All Depths: Breaking down water columns to locate Bass.  I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, patience is not the key to success during any outing on the water. Sitting and waiting for Bass to “turn on” will be a waste of your time and abilities. So, what do you do when you show up at the lake? Does it have to be so random? Should you be aimlessly searching, hoping to find active fish? Or should you essentially find the key depth that Bass are relating to and simply appeal to their instincts? The latter is the obvious answer, so let’s break it down. I believe your success is predicated on good preparation and clear, well thought out game planning that begins the night before you hit the water. Let’s say your plan at first light is to hit a shallow rocky point adjacent a steep break line that drops into a main lake channel or basin, and for arguments sake, your theory of the Bass being up on this shallower structure is correct. Then what? What happens when the Bass pull off this structure and begin the next phase of their day? Are you prepared to follow these predictable daily movements? Start by getting your arsenal in order. Hitting a good morning spot brings to mind one obvious presentation – topwaters such as poppers are high on my priority list. If poppers aren’t cutting the mustard, walk the dog style baits can be very effective. Storm Chug Bugs and the Lake Fork Magic Popper(1oz) can be strait retrieved in a pop and stop cadence... read more
Product Review: The Original Rod Sox

Product Review: The Original Rod Sox

Date: December 3, 2015 Product type: Rod Cover Manufacturer: Rod Sox Reviewer:  Conley/Fuchs – TheBassassins Introduction: How is it possible that rods get so tangled? For us fishing time is the most important time, so we try to eliminate unnecessary steps on the way as much as possible. The night before all rods get rigged and neatly stored in the truck just to get to the boat launch and find a fine mess. While loading up the boat the hustle begins again, fiddling with tangled lines and rod tips quickly adds time to your tight schedule. Well knocking your Sox off is a lot more fun!  This open water season we covered all rods with the Rod Sox and what a difference it made, it only takes a few seconds at the end of each day to put them back on. Which results in easy storage and the next launch is a breeze. (Rod Sox) Specifications Type Rod Cover Length Variety Weight NA Material Rubber/Mesh Hooks NA Colors Red/Blue/Yellow/Green/White Origin USA MSRP $7.99-$9.99US Quality/Construction:  The construction of the Rod Sox are great – the mesh is woven perfectly which allows you to store them quite easily by rolling them up when not is use.  One of the best features is also the very sturdy rubber band at the beginning which allows you to not only guide the sox on quickly but keeps them locked down below the largest ring – very smart! Quality Ratings for (Rod Sox) Finish(1-5) 5 Level of Detail(1-5) 5 Hardware(1-5) 5 Craftsmanship(1-5) 5 Total 20 Possible 10 Rating (10 being highest ) Performance:  Lived up to all... read more
Exist To Fish Christmas Wish List

Exist To Fish Christmas Wish List

Well it’s that time of the year again.  The boats are put away for the winter as the ice starts to form. With Christmas around the corner, many of us are starting to think about  what we would like for Christmas or are looking for gift ideas for friends or family. If you are anything  like the Exist To Fish Staff, you probably lost a few baits this year. We are all excited about new and existing fishing product’s that we have not had an opportunity to purchase or test out. They just were not in your budget at the time or perhaps you are thinking about trying a new lure this winter or in 2016!! I asked the Staff at Exist to Fish what they where going to ask Santa for this year. Here are the top picks on their wish list! Dean Schenk  : “On my Xmas wish list would be a pair of Smith Backdrop sunglasses to protect my eyes when on the water and ice”.  Product Features: A perfect medium-sized complement to the Touchstone, the Backdrop incorporates the same great features like stainless steel spring hinges and megol contact surfaces at the nose and temple tips. ChromaPop™ polarized lenses provide the highest level of enhanced color and clarity, or choose Techlite glass lenses for unparalleled optics and scratch resistance. “Also a tube of liquid mayhem walleye attractant in my stocking as I use it on the hard water all winter”. ​Product Features: Made with real minnows in a super concentrated form. Contains natural baitfish enzymes infused with powerful amino acids and other bite stimulants formulated to target a fishes olfactory glands and trigger big strikes. Fish hold on to artificial bait longer meaning more... read more
Mid-Summer Largemouth: The Heat Is On

Mid-Summer Largemouth: The Heat Is On

Okay, it’s hot. The mornings start early and the days are long. And…the fishing is a grind right? Well, I guess. Let’s try and change that. This is the point of the season when largemouth bass move onto what can be described as more specific haunts. They will follow forage yes, but they will also seek areas of comfort and better yet, areas to ambush prey while escaping the penetrating rays of the mid-day sun. There are many factors that determine their locations in lakes and tributaries such as available cover, oxygen content, water temperature, forage etc. Prime Real Estate Now, these “specific” haunts I mentioned. Many largemouth bass in most lakes will move to mid-lake structures such as humps, sunken islands, saddles, main breaklines and long tapering points reaching the main basin and other structures like old road beds and old railway lines. Basically, these fish are relating less to shoreline structures and will seek structures that offer both deep water and shallow water access. For a percentage of largemouth bass, as opposed to their randomly suspended smallmouth cousins, deep weed lines are the order of the day. Prime spots to focus your efforts are irregularities in these weed lines such as sudden inside or outside turns or points in the weedline. This could be a change in bottom composition or mud to substrate transitions, sand and so on. Exist To Fish team member Colin Booth can attest to that, as he definitely leans on this basic pattern to drum up his little green buddies. Colin fishes northern lakes in the Kawarthas region of Ontario, Canada. He explains,... read more
What it Takes to Win!! An Inside look with TJ Lacey and Travis Vivian

What it Takes to Win!! An Inside look with TJ Lacey and Travis Vivian

    The age old question… Why are the same guys always at the top. Always cashing cheques. Always so consistent.  What are they doing that I am not! Well pay attention to this one. Because these guys finish well for the following reasons. It’s not luck.. And its not a “secret bait”.  It is raw talent and the willingness to put the time in on and of the water to find the winning pattern.  Exist To Fish Canada spoke with 2014 Top Bass Classic Champions Travis Vivian and TJ Lacey to unlock the secrets to their stellar season and oh so consistent results.         Travis Vivian is a 24 years old Oshawa Ontario native.  He started fishing at the young age of 2 years old at the green wing derby in Peterborough Ontario, which is where his fishing addiction all started. Since then he has spent every free moment he has to go catch fish weather it’s on a boat, standing on river banks catching trout and salmon, or on the ice. Throughout the years he has spent most of his time fishing with his dad and close friends Cory and Chris Johnston. Cory and Chris have been competing in fishing tournaments for over 15 years now and it is because of them that Travis started  fishing competitively. “Just seeing how much fun and excitement they have before heading out to a tournament made me want to get into it”. Travis has only been competing for four years now, and in that short time he has accomplished a fair bit! His first year of competitive angling was partnered with Lynn Johnston (father of Cory and Chris) They... read more
CRACKING THE CODE: LATE SEASON BASS

CRACKING THE CODE: LATE SEASON BASS

Time to put your gear away and winterize the boat – it’s too cold for Bass to bite, right? Have to give you a big fat no on that one. This is the time to chase giants.   As Fall sets in, the days are shorter, and the sun sits lower causing air and water temps to drop. This will drive baitfish up on shallower structure in search of warmer water, thus, attracting hungry opportunistic Bass.   Southern Ontario tournament angler, Chris Huskilson has a few approaches to finding active Smallmouth (and Largemouth alike), as do I, so let’s delve into it. Chris explains, “I target Smallmouth that will tend to move up on shallow, rocky structures (4’-6’ in depth) that are feeding on schools of baitfish.” Chris targets main lake humps, points and saddles directly adjacent to deeper water. (Saddles are connecting structures that run between islands and from points to islands etc…) At this time of year, Chris puts away his crayfish (crustacean) imitators and focuses solely on local baitfish colors that are in turn, what Smallmouth target later in the season. Photo by Chris Huskilson Chris leans on several techniques during this time of year including the drop shot rig, tubes, swimbaits, fluke style baits and as most Bass anglers use in the Fall, jerkbaits. For drop shot rigs, Chris will target suspending Bass so he will rig the bait 24” above the weight, sticking with a baitfish color imitation, his bait of choice being a Jackall Super Pin Tail”. Other baits that I myself have had success with have been Bass Magnet Lures “Twitch” and... read more
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Smith Optics
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