Contact Travis Frank

P | 612-382-6927
E | travis@trophyencounters.com

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265 S Oak St
Waconia, MN
United States

612-382-6927

Travis Frank and Trophy Encounters Guide Service specializes in fully-guided fishing trips for Muskie, Walleye, Bass, Northern Pike and Panfish on Lake Minnetonka, Lake Waconia, Lake Mille Lacs and other Metro Minnesota Waters.​

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Don't Tell My Girlfriend, But I Think I'm In Love!

Travis Frank

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Ok so this just might be the sweetest thing I have ever been a part of.  I know, I know, I do love muskie fishing more than probably anybody in this universe, but there is just something about these river giants that pushes my buttons.  Sitting in complete darkness and knowing that your rod is possibly seconds away from being pulled in the water if you don't hold on tight is quite the way to spend a night, and when the earth shattering strike happens, you realize how sweet of an experience you are a part of.  Up until last week, I have never actually targeted these huge flatheads, but have heard nothing but great things from the people I know that do catch them.  catfish%20001.jpgI thought I would take advantage of the break in daylight activity with the heat, and sit out on the Mighty Minnesota River after daylight hours are finished.  Matt, Bails and myself know very little about this program other than the basics we picked up from hearsay over the years.  I will be honest with all Y'all when I say that it aint that easy when you are dealing with floating logs and deadheads and gushing current, but it sure is a blast.  As you can see from the picture of the Cat (meow) that Matt is holding, we ended up figuring a thing or two out before we ran out of bait on the second night.catfish%20008.jpg  The first night we launched from the access and went upstream looking for spots to fish once darkness fell and the second night we went downstream doing the same.  I feel that this was very crucial to our success, because navigation on that bad boy during the dark is difficult enough even knowing where we were and what we were looking for.  If we had waited to search for spots during darkness, we would have probably had very poor results.  The key factor for us seemed to be having many spots to hit, because every time we hit a new spot, someone was almost immediately being throttled by these large goofy wiskered creatures.  When I say throttled, I mean throttled!  The bites aren't your normal walleye taps, and many of the strikes almost rip the pole from your unknowing hands.  I won't say that we are experts at these guys yet, however we learned a ton on our couple of trips on the water.  I won't put all the pictures up, but we did catch several channels and flatheads between 5 and 13 pounds,catfish%20010.jpg with one giant that we don't know how to figure the weight for.  Since none of us had ever seen one of these prehistoric giants up close, and we had no scale, we just gazed at it's huge size, and figured it to be somewhere between 30 and 40 pounds.  All I know is that it seemed to cover the entire floor of the boat, and looking at Matt's 6 foot stature compared to the fish definitely shows how large this awesome fish was.  I have had some awesome muskie battles in my day, but watching the strength and power of this brute makes me almost shake in excitement for the time that I get to do battle with one of that size.  This is totally a new experience for me, and since the heat of July typically makes for tough fishing on our lakes, I am excited to chase a few more bruisers such as this.  I think I'm addicted!  We fished a few hours after dark on Thursday, and the entire night on Friday.  The giant was hooked somewhere around 2:30 to 2:45 in the morning, and it ate a large sucker minnow after Bail's and Myself both lost fish that we couldn't move from the bottom.  catfish%20012.jpgI don't know if these cats (meow) swim in schools, but we had the most insane 15 minutes of fishing that I have possibly ever been a part of.  Bail's had a fish almost pull him in, only to shake the bait and leave him with a few shreads of minnow, and I had a hookset on a fish that felt like I was trying to pull up the bottom of the river, only to have Hennen screaming that he can't stop his line from screaming out the muskie reel.  Needless to say, our headlamps were going back and forth trying to figure out whose pole we should be shining the light on.  Truly Awesome!  Until next time Y'all, Keep on Livin the Dream!

catfish%20014.jpgI almost forgot, Who would ever have guessed that Bails would have to catch something gross from the river.  Well obviously he had to catch another oddball creature.  So I thought it was weird and disgusting when he pulled this nasty turtle out of 30 feet of water, but not even 15 minutes later, he landed ANOTHER ONE!  All I can do is shake my head at the crap this man pulls out of the water.  Now i'm done til next time I write.  Go on Livin the Dream now!