Thank you for all those participating in the Ice Out Contest. It was a tough year to predict anything but it finally arrived today. A few of you deserve honorable mentions: Diane Walker and Duane Anderson who were close with a guess of May 20. Adam S. was almost on target with a guess of May 18. Some folk, like Jim A. (you know who you are) was targeting April 22….not this year!
Anyways, congratulations to Katie Perkis for picking the right date. You’ll be making a fashion statement with a VBL garment of your choice….suitable for both a night on the town, or a morning on the lake. Katie will be up with her family in July to pick up her winnings.
Let the fishing begin!
I’m with Andy
But it is killing me more than anything is to think about how great the fishing has to be this week with ice out….
Since winning this contest four years ago, my ice-out estimate has been rejected by Gord because I was “off” by one day twice, and now by two days this year. I believe that this is some sort of record that deserves a nice prize.
Great to see that open water! Now I’m waiting for the reports – with pics – of the stupendous lake trout fishing.
It is with regret that I report the “stupendous lake trout fishing” that I have been touting has not materialized. Now, granted I have only put in a total of an hour spread over three or four outings, but come on…! On a serious note, a fellow angler of substantial esteem, mentioned to me that lake trout fishing right after ice out can be slow. The water temps are hovering around 40 degrees, which is not my usual lake trout window. We seem to do best in the upper forty’s……so maybe it is too cold. That bodes well for Dustin who will arrive this Saturday. In the meantime I have sewer lines to fix……:(
Gord, Dustin and other early season lake trout anglers…I believe that good laker fishing awaits you. But it may require being very focused. Right now, these fish can be swimming anywhere in the water column–shallow to deep, but unlikely very deep as in the heat of summer. I would be fishing shallow to start with (10 feet) and work deeper out to 30 feet if unable to find them shallow.
I would troll, slowly, with a big spoon or a #13 Rapala, with my lures running at least 100′ behind the boat. Sometimes these fish will be cruising/feeding very close to the surface and actually can be seen. My trolling would be concentrated on shorelines that were gradually sloped with a rocky bottom composition. I would be using my depth sounder to follow along the lake contour lines (shallower to deeper). And if my initial target area failed to produce, I would give it up and move to another spot.
One of the most important things I would be doing is making the bait move erratically by sweeping the rod tip forward on a regular basis. After the sweep, I let my lure flutter back down. Also, I would be incorporating a lot of s-turns into my trolling passes, which causes the lure to speed-up and slow-down during the turns. These techniques will trigger fish into biting and are far more effective than simply dragging the lure through the water.
Well, I hope this is helpful to someone. There are some very large lakers swimming close to VBL right now. Spend a few hours targeting lakers and you might be rewarded with a real bruiser.
“That bodes well for Dustin who will arrive this Saturday.”
One of the most inspiring sentences that has ever been written! And Professor….now I understand how you got your name! Thanks so much!!
I’m finding it hard to focus on getting anything done and we’re excited to up at VBL in just a few days!
Dustin, the Professor earned his moniker by fashioning a make shift battery for his sonar unit using two cans of Molson OV beer, an empty night crawler carton and 4 feet of 10 lbs. Power Pro. Still, you have to be impressed. Catch a bunch when you’re up.
TR…that’s even more impressive than his fishing wisdom!
The make-shift battery idea was Andy’s suggestion, and made a lot of sense to me at the time. He neglected to tell me that I was supposed to chant the Hillbilly Fish Call while making this contraption. He and Gord got a big chuckle out my frustration. Bastards.
Gord, you are the sewer king. Get that fixed and put in your time on the water. We need some pictures to sustain us.
Sewer is fixed. Now need to get some docks straightened up before Dustin arrives. Probably hit the water this weekend. This Spring has been hell….there is no other words for it. As much as I love riding the Perchmaster’s butt (if he had one) about missing opening week…the past week wasn’t fit for man or beast. I think I survived, but just barely. Upcoming weather looks good…and fishing should be as well. I will report soon……
Inquiring minds want to know. Who caught to first keeper?
Like the mutant ninja turtles that emerged from the sewers of N.Y. to fight crime, Gord is now greeting guests dressed up as Leonardo wearing a blue mask and wielding two long and razor-sharp katanas that can slice through nearly any fish pulled from the depths of Eagle Lake.
Gord….we will have a spot in a boat this weekend for sure!
You need to take into consideration that Gord’s new mutant ninja turtle outfit takes up quite a lot of room. It’s kind of like when your kids put on a cape or princess dress for the first time. They don’t want to take it off. In addition, it has been a long cold winter, and Gord has packed on a few more pounds to make it through this horrible winter. Good luck this weekend!
Enough of the “BULLSHIT” how about a fishing report and some pictures.
I think you should make a run for the border and show them how it is done?
Hell Andy I’m thinking you are right. What so hard about catching a couple fish a photo shop them make it look like you are slaying em at VBL
This afternoon Dustin made it to the lodge after some unfortunate vehicle down time. Fortunately they were able to be repaired in International Falls and on their way quickly. Initial reports on their first foray this afternoon is a nice 33 inch laker released and some slot sized walleye. Tonight??? I might wet a line too…………….
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On behalf of the Boyes Group, I would like to pass on our sincere thanks for hosting the Muskie Madness Week and we thoroughly enjoyed our stay at VBL and had a great time!! This was our 7th year on Eagle Lake and we have stayed at a few other lodges but VBL takes the cake hands down! You can definitely count us in for next year. I’m happy to see you post some of my pics, they turned out well. Thanks again Gord for a wonderful week of fishing and your stellar hospitality, you run a first class operation, we look forward to seeing you next year!