I had the good fortune to fish the Spanish River and North Channel of Lake Huron for the 26th time this spring, arriving at the Blue Heron Resort on Thursday, May 11th and departing on Saturday, June 10th.
This is the link to this year's fishing report:
Conditions were indeed challenging this spring, as the weather was much more like late fall, with windy conditions, dark layered clouds, and interspersed rain squalls. The temperatures reached 45 to 50 for the first two weeks, then 55 for the third week and then upper 60's for our final week, when I finally got to fish in "white pants" for two days before returning home. When the wind wasn't blowing, the bugs were out in force. I've decided that there is no repellent on earth that will discourage Canadian Black Flies and Mosquitoes. Even with heavy applications they will still swarm around your head, bounce off of you, get in your mouth or ears, and find their way to the back of your neck or ankles.
Canadian fish who live under ice for half of the year are immune to cold fronts and blows, again showed up in numbers for us, and higher than normal water levels allowed us to fish areas that we haven't been able to fish for the past ten years. Numbers were incredible with 25-50 assorted fish coming over the side of the boat most days, and the size of the fish, especially the smallmouth bass, was incredible - many in the 19-21 inch range. My all-too-honest digital scale says these hawgs weight mid-four to mid-five pounds each. Our big fish of the trip were 43 and 48 inch (35 pound) muskies, 32 inch Northern Pike - small by comparative years but doubling up in numbers from past trips, and I cleaned 33 walleye with the biggest being 26 inches, and threw back equally that many. We even caught four rare Largemouth Bass. All of the fish we caught were released with the exception of the walleye which were destined for the frying pan or be taken home. Bill's 48 inch muskie was caught on a Zara Spook Puppy and 8 pound test line. We are living proof that fish don't break lines - fishermen do. My 43 incher came on a 3/8 oz white spinner bait in shallow water.
Perhaps having the weather and bugs effect me more than ordinary could be a by-product of old age. I turned 70 while on the trip.
I fished on Week One with my regular partner Bill Hagedorn, and Ryan Anderson who flew up from Charleston, S.C., to join us.
Bill and I fished together week two and three, while my brother Mark and his son Andy, came up for Week Four.
While the conditions were indeed challenging this year, we couldn't wait to book again for 2018.
Below are a sampling of some of our trip pics. Many others are on the trip report.