What a week. Since I don't know where to start, I'm going to take it from the top. Monday was wild as you have previously read. Phillip and I had too many chances to count that evening and boated some dandies including his first fish on the figure 8, which was a very healthy 49 incher. I also struck gold with another boatside attack, and after the smoke cleared, I too was holding a picture perfect moment.
Tuesday I was joined on the water by Jeff Byrne. We decided to have a small competition with his workmate Dawn. She was in Mike's boat, and I had the privilege of showing Jeff a good time. The weather was more suited for a lazy cruise around the lake, but we fished hard. Our chances came and went throughout the evening, but we were determined to outfish the other boat. As the sun faded on our evening we had two extremely close calls with fish hitting the bait and coming unglued. Finally it all happened. One of the muskies in the area I call "the pod" decided to pounce, and totally hammered my bait. Yep, we also won the Cabin Fever contest with that guy. A dandy to say the least.
Wednesday morning myself and a large group of fisherman got together on the shores of Wayzata. I had lined up an event for Cargill, and they brought in people from all over the country, including two individuals from Brazil. If you were in town last wednesday, then you knew that this wasn't the best time to show our Minnesota waters. It rained, rained, and even rained more. It was tough luck for the weather, but the fish were still responsive. Some of us fished muskies, and others fished bass. By the end of the trip, we had many bass, a few pike and even a 49 inch muskie to show for our efforts. Congrats to all the guests and to the guides for a successful day in the rainy weather.
That evening I had a small window of free time, and my very good friend Matt Hennen also cleared his schedule to join me on the water. He is Montana bound for the next two years, and the only thing he wanted to do before he left at the end of the week was to catch a muskie. I wanted to send him off with that exact prize, and wouldn't you know, it took about 10 minutes to accomplish that goal. It was a great strike on the lure that he wanted so badly to land one on. He has been throwing it the last few times out, and it finally paid off for him. Congrats buddy, and I cannot wait for your return!
Thursday the boys from Pheasants Forever were out. This has been a trip in the making for quite some time. Bob St. Pierre and Anthony Huack joined me to get some muskie slime. Eager to show them a fish, I took them to one of my favorite locations on the lake. Bob made it very clear that he wanted me to fish hard too, and that they just wanted to see a fish in the boat. So, I guess that speaks for itself, and shortly into our outing I had a beauty to behold. This was just the prelude to the nights events, and it wasn't long before Bob joined in on the action. It was a strike and battle to leave a grown man speechless. Luckily, Bob came out on the winning end of the deal. Congrats buddy!
Friday morning I was joined by Jim and his son Allen. These two muskie nuts join me every year, and our results have always been incredible. If you would ask these guys what they thought of muskie fishing, they would probably tell you that it is really easy. In the past three years we boat at least two muskies every time. This day was to be no different. Last year Allen took home two incredible memories, and this year it was his father's turn. After a few misses and close calls, Jim scored first with his personal best. Shortly after, it was Jim again with another airborn freak of a fish. Great fish, and a great time with these two boys. Can't wait 'til next year!
That afternoon I snuck in for a quick bite to eat, and was then joined on the water by a new muskie fisherman. Sam was his name, and he was straight out of Alaska. On vacation in our neighborhood, he heard about this muskie craze and had to give it a chance. We hit the water and did the good 'ol tutorial that I always give. After I felt he was ready to do battle we went straight to a spot that has been holding several fish. Yep, you guessed it, the dream became a reality. Sam landed his first muskie in his first twenty casts of fishing for them. Is it suppose to be that easy? I think not! Congrats on the trophy of a lifetime Sam!
Well, the week flew by with tons of stories. The encounters were everywhere, and the photo's came with them. We saw fish, tons of fish actually, and landed many. I was excited about it all, but I was missing just one thing. While every trip gave us the prize we sought, we had yet to boat a 50. I discussed exactlly that with Mike on Friday evening, and Saturday morning we were on the water looking to seal the deal on the perfect week. A quick KFAN radio interview from the water, and we were soon casting our baits. Spot number 3 was the spot to seal the ending of a great week. Yep, you guessed it, the 50 incher came in the boat! And with that my friends, I hooked the boat up and we went home. From the muskie filled metro waters, keep on livin' the dream!