Every trip is great. Muskies rock, and life is good. Sometimes, however, a trip can take on a special meaning. Something ups the anty on the entire endeavor. Last night was one of those trips. I had a special birthday request and I was determined to hold up my end of the deal.
Muskies were the obvious choice. Dan Becker, the birthday boy. His partner was Jason. I'm not sure if I spelled that correctly, but that doesn't matter much. What mattered was the fact that I had two muskie virgins in the boat. If a muskie is caught, it's going to be a first. That in itself is a recipe for success.
The wind was howling and the adrenline high. It's all about the anticipation. What could strike, and how big? When would it happen, and would it be on the figure 8? These were the self-admitted thoughts running through their mind. I was told that 3 years of chasing muskies had yet to yield a fish. Would today be the first?
As the sun set the wind increased even more. I told them that I could feel it. At the time I wasn't sure if "it" was a cold coming on, or a strike from a freshwater shark. We moved from spot to spot awaiting the mayhem. Then, just as if it was scripted in a movie, chaos broke loose. In the dim light of a half lit moon, water was being tossed left and right. The tell-tale sign of a big muskie on the line. Man against beast, and man was in charge. Sort of. See, this chaos in the dark nearly pulled the lucky angler overboard. With net in hand, I was useless to the cause.
Dan, the birthday boy, stepped up and became the savior. With zero time to spare, he raced to the back of the boat in time to grab his buddy Jason before he hit the water. Curse words flew, but somehow the muskie remained hooked and the battle ensued. Moments later the fish of a lifetime was in the net and laughter could be heard from one end of lake Minnetonka to another. Just the way you would draw it up for a first time angler. It may not have been textbook, but I wouldn't have changed a thing. That is why muskie fishing rocks! Congratulations on your very first muskie, Jason. Happy birthday, Dan! Until next time, keep on livin' the muskie dream!