The 2017 season started out hot. Opening day (photo above) was a huge success. We kept a nice meal of walleyes for our annual opening day fish fry, and we tossed a bunch back to hopefully catch another day. Fortunately, the opener wasn't a fluke. Walleyes, bass and pretty much everything else in our lakes have been biting really well. Special thanks to the Westonka Walleye Program for their efforts to boost lake Minnetonka's walleye population. This lake has never been in better shape. Big fish, small fish, and everything in between are showing up. We really have a walleye factory growing before our eyes. If you haven't hooked a metro eye out there yet, you're missing out. Lake Waconia is also consistent again this year. The more I learn about these lakes, the more I enjoy fishing them. Also this year, my three year old is getting in on the action. My boys love being on the water as much as I do. I couldn't ask for much more. Between my family trips and time on the water with customers, my photo album is growing quickly again this season. Thanks to all that have joined me, and those trips still to come. I'll see you on the water!
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2015 came and went like a flash. I find that life moves so fast these days that I hardly have time to sit back and enjoy the moments that make this fisherman's life so special. Years ago I would finish each fishing trip by plopping down on my computer and recapping the day with a story. I'm glad for those times because I still go back through the archives and relive those moments. I've made quite a few memories with quite a few friends and I'm thankful for being a fishing guide. 2015 was no exception to the fish tales and stories. It's just that I didn't have the time after each trip to write about them. I did, however, take hundreds of photos and I'm glad to be able to post some of them here. Hopefully these pictures tell a story that inspires you to want to hit the water. The tug from a fish is good for the soul. Not only because of the fish itself, but what it took to get you to the point of setting the hook, the place you caught it, and the people you enjoyed it with. I like to call it, livin' the dream.
Welcome to opening week, 2015. Does it get any better than opening week? Well, I guess that would depend on what you consider to dominate. But, for the sake of this post, it doesn't get any better. Opening day brings a fresh slate, and excitement to build off of what we learned every year leading up to this one. For myself, and my clients, I am pumped for what this year will bring. It seems walleye fishing in the metro continues to get better every year. Part of it is because of the stocking efforts on our lakes. I also think it's because I have made an effort to dial in every single scenario that I will run across as the year unfolds. Sometimes it's a cold front, other days it's extreme heat and rapidly rising water temps. Sometimes we fish in clouds and wind, other times there's flat calm sun. No matter the condition, I believe there's always fish to be caught. Learning how to catch fish in all conditions takes time, but as the years unfold, I've found some patterns that have proven true in nearly every scenario the Big Guy above can show us.
Opening day was a perfect example of adapting to difficult conditions. As dawn broke on Lake Minnetonka, the air was cold. Somewhere in the mid 40s. That isn't unusual for this time of the year, but it was a change from the norm this year. For several weeks leading up to Saturday the lows had been in the 50s. At 5am on Saturday morning, the wind was cold from the northeast, and the fish weren't biting. At least the walleyes. And at least in our boat.
On these cold mornings that have turned the walleyes off, I've learned to be patient and let the sun warm them up. It's not common walleye knowledge, but I've found the middle of the day to be best when this happens. The sun warms the shallow waters and the bait fish move into the shallow weeds. The first green weeds of the year hold the life, and the walleyes follow. They are there to eat. They are catchable. Ironically, this pattern seems to be best during the middle of the day. Exactly the opposite of what a walleye angler would expect.
We were patient, and as the clock struck the magic hour of 10 am, we started catching our walleyes. They didn't stop until we ran out of bait at 2pm. And, with the ultra clear, zebra mussel filled water of lake Minnetonka, we could literally watch the fish eat. Think things are changing? Yes they are. Will you be changing with them? I think you should. There's never been a better chance to catch walleyes from our metro lakes. And, with the invasion of zebra mussels, there's never been a better chance to watch it all with your very eyes.
The season is here. I sure hope it treats you well! As always, if I can help you out on the water this year, please don't hesitate to ask. It's something I truly enjoy. 2015 is going to be the best year yet. I can just feel it. I hope it is for you too! Until next time, Keep Livin' the Dream!
2014 marked another successful season on the water. I balanced my time on the water with a new baby boy at home, plus a few trips that will air on the tv shows I work on, Minnesota Bound, Due North Outdoors and The Flush. I will admit that I felt robbed of the last month of the season, but I can now say that I fished lake Minnetonka walleyes through the ice on November 18th. I doubt I will ever fish ice eyes that early again in my life. Below I've posted a few of my favorite fish pics from this summer on the water. I am blessed to fish for a living. I'm blessed to have great clients. I'm blessed that each year seems to get better and better. I hope you've found the water to be a blessing to you and yours this season. I'll see you on the ice!
July 4th has come and gone, yikes! It's a good time to look back over the past few months and see what has happened on our rain soaked lakes. First off, the high water of 2014 will likely go down in the history books as the highest water of all time. It needs to be mentioned as priority #1. "No Wake" on almost all metro lakes has made guiding interesting. Instead of flying from spot to spot in search of the most active fish, it's been a slower, methodical grind-it-out approach. But, it's still been dynamite! I think I'm witnessing the best metro walleye fishing of my life this year. Through July 4th, the action is still going strong. Throw in a few bass outings and only one (yes, only 1) muskie trip to date, and I have a spring to remember! Of course, I can't forget about my lil fishin' partner in training that is nearing his 3rd month of fishing mentorship. My how time flies! Here are a few photos to remember the beginning of this summer season. Thanks for all that have made it so memorable!