Just when we think the season is starting to fade and its time to call it quits, a new light is dawned. Yes, that's right, the walleye fishing season isn't over just yet, and there are several big fish yet to be caught. The cold temps of the last few weeks have kept me hunkered inside which has allowed me to tackle many of the projects I needed to get done. But the resurgence of my pal Dusty, and a new fishing friend out of town got me back on the ice.
I will give Dusty all the credit for the local accomplishments, with the attitude and time that he has put in. He has been spending more time in the house than I have been able to, and he has been consistently catching nice walleyes. Not a ton, but consistently getting em to bite. This time of the year, you can't expect the rattles to be dinging off the wall, but if you put in your time and effort you will be rewarded. We have caught a few eaters this past week, but the highlight comes from what he has been able to do after I leave the house. The best call I received was of the one that almost hit the 10 pound mark. A true dandy! Plus, he's had other excitement that makes me giggle each morning that we chat. The secret is the same as in the past. He's stayed mobile, fishing proven spots from last year, and even tried a few more. Thanks for the fun Dusty!
Now for a most interesting walleye twist! For the last several days, I have been receiving emails from a certain fishing friend. Nearly every morning I get an email from his picture phone with another huge walleye he has stuffed through the hole. When I say huge, that's almost an understatement. He had 3 of them in one morning that all went close to, or over the 10 pound mark. True fatties to boot! So, being the good friend that I am, I decided to give him a hand pulling them through the hole. Dusty, Pauly and Timmy joined me on the excursion, and we were headed south. Yep, not north like we usually do, but south. Turns out, he was fishing waters that I have been itching to tackle for many years. The flowing waters of the rivers in our state are plump full of walleyes, and they hardly even know what an ice fishing lure looks like. The only problem I have had was finding good areas that were frozen solid and navigatable by foot. It's always scared me to trust that flowing water, which is why I jumped at the chance to try this out.
Our guide for the day was busy, but gave us very clear directions, and a key to his house. To our surprise, we had a lot of ice in the main river channel. We were fishing shallow water, but unable to read our jigs on the vexilar. The current just pulls everything out of the hole. Speaking of the hole. They were angled downstream to help stuff the fatties up when you battle them in current. It was truly bizarre, and totally awesome! Understanding that we were still walleye fishing, we knew we couldn't expect constant action, but were eager for a giant. Pauly pulled through as always, and got us on the board with a fish that was nothing short of spectacular. He could barely fit the huge fish into the hole with the rushing current and its fat belly, but that big fish looked like it was ready to burst. A couple quick photo's and we were back to fishing. Our energy was at an all time high, but that proved to be our only walleye for the day.
With unbelievable weather, we went searching and learning. This experience was pretty new to all of us, and we spent the rest of our time studying river current, bends, breaks and fish holding areas, trying to figure things out. Our guide, Mike (aka: Lum, or Phillip as I like to call him), joined us for the evening in hopes of finding more fish, but the fish proved to be smarter than the fisherman yet again. We caught a couple of catfish on accident, and shared many laughs as we always do. This experience will rank up there pretty high due to everything about it. I might be going out on a whim here, but I do believe that we only scratched the surface, and things are only going to get better for the last couple weeks of the season. I hope you stick around to see what I mean. Until then, Keep on Livin the Dream!