Sunday, June 30, 2013

Marking and recognizing rocks and reefs

Bleach jug marks reef that is far from nearest shoreline
The reef is also shown on the map we provide
We advise all our boaters to idle away from the shore to a distance of at least 100 feet before picking up speed. That way they will be assured of being in deep water.
The west end of Red Lake where we do our fishing is generally very predictable for rocks and reefs. If you see a long, flat point of land, you can expect the water to be shallow at the end of the point. Give these places a wide berth. Shorelines with steep rock faces are deep.
There are a few places, however, where there are "surprise" hazards. I try to mark these with white bleach jugs in those places where boats are likely to travel.
It is impossible for me to mark every rock in the lake, especially the hundreds within 100 feet of shore. However, all the hazards are show on the maps we provide to our guests.
If you are new to our camp, always check your planned travel route beforehand for hazards.
If you avoid boating near shore, cutting between islands and taking "shortcuts" across points, you will be in the clear.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Pinch-down barbs; carry side-cutters

Cut the split ring, not the hook off the treble as shown
We've needed to remove a few hooks from anglers' hands already this year, including this one today.
It's a great idea to pinch-down the barbs on all treble hooks on lures like Rapalas. These will still catch and hold fish as long as you keep a tight line and are simple to remove from your own skin -- just pull them out.
It is also a great idea to carry medium-to-large-sized side-cutters. Use these to cut the split ring that holds the treble to the lure. Don't cut the single hook off the treble! If you do it is far more difficult to remove. In the case above we used the string method and the hook was out in an instant.
This is done by holding down the shank of the treble and giving a quick tug with a string on the hook parallel to the skin in the opposite direction. The hook just pops out as the barb is pulled through the opening stretched by the curve of the hook before the elastic skin can close.
No matter how careful we are, sooner or later we all get a fish hook in ourselves.
Side-cutters are also handy in case you catch a big pike and cannot get the hook out of some far recess of its mouth without killing the fish. With side-cutters you can snip off the hook from the treble and get the big fish back into the water before it's too late. Of course, it is always preferable if you can remove the hook entirely but sometimes it would just do too much damage to the fish.
Several cabins are reporting that they are doing better on walleye with artificials such as Rapalas than with live bait!

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

What to do on a "hot" day

Bow Narrows angler Mark Noll got this photo today of a cow and twin calf moose
We just had our first "hot" day. It was 80 F or about 27 C -- shorts weather, in my opinion. But it can feel like you are in a reflector oven out in the boat, especially if there is no wind, which was the case.
All around us, of course, is the lake: the nice, cool, refreshing, rejuvenating lake. Even a moose knows what to do when it wants to cool off.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Wish you were here

Tennessee's Hunter Billings and Hannah Bradley show off a 39-inch northern pike that had grabbed a small fish Hunter was reeling in yesterday.The big fish just wouldn't let go and both fish were netted. The big job was released after a few quick pics.
We are so busy I simply don't have time to write on the blog. In short, the fishing is fantastic, especially for walleye. Our anglers are catching unprecedented numbers of walleye. The most I've heard is 350 for a single boat in one day. There not only are lots of walleye, there are lots of big ones as well. Just about everybody is getting a bunch in the 25-inch range.
Virtually all of these fish are released unharmed. Most people just keep one "eater" a day for lunch and a couple of "eaters" the last day of the week to take home.
The weather has been spectacular with temperatures in the low 70s F and no rain to speak of.
If you ever wanted to come to Bow Narrows Camp fishing, come this summer!

Monday, June 17, 2013

My Father's Day outing

I took up the offer of our son, Josh, to let him do my chores at camp yesterday afternoon while Sam and I went fishing. It was the first time I wet a line this year.
As usual, I spend as much time photographing nature as fishing and was lucky to see this black bear feeding on grass along the shore.
I got snagged on a bush and when I went near shore to get free discovered a small patch of pink Lady Slipper orchids.
In another instance I moved close to shore to inspect some grass flowers and saw that the entire bog was covered with newly emerged dragonflies, drying their wings. As far as I can determine, these are Spiny Basket Tail dragonflies.
Oh yeah, I also caught 10 northern pike and two perch.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Burich brothers hit the walleye again

Walleye anglers: Denny, Bill and Wayne Burich
Wisconsin's Burich brothers, from left, Denny, Bill and Wayne, just finished another fishing trip to Bow Narrows Camp on Friday. Their group has fished at camp every year since 1977 and has caught about a trillion walleye over that period.
This year was no exception. Denny reports the six fishermen in his cabin probably boated and released over 1,000 walleye last week.
It was a spectacular week for everyone. Not only were lots of fish taken but lots of big ones as well.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

A day in the life at Bow Narrows Camp

Another beautiful day starts at sunrise

Breakfast is prepared in the lodge kitchen

Unusual hummingbird moth samples dandelions in the yard

Stack of walleye fillets makes a dandy lunch
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Monday, June 10, 2013

Whitefish join walleye and pike in the catch

Lake whitefish
Turned-down lips
Anglers are picking up whitefish while fishing for walleye.
As you can see from the close-up, whitefish have a turned-down lip -- sort of an overbite.
Walleye continue to hit well. Everyone is eating walleye for lunch.
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Sunday, June 9, 2013

The walleye bite is "on"

Very large catches of walleye were taken today.
One boat reported catching about 100 in a few hours.
Anglers are reporting that the walleyes they are catching are all sizes with plenty of near-18-inchers for eating and lots in the 20s that they are releasing.
Favorite live baits are worms and leeches.
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Friday, June 7, 2013

It's been the spring of the big pike

Bob Preuss displays a beefy 39-inch northern pike before releasing it back to Red Lake this week.
I don't know when we have caught so many really large pike. I would wager in our first three weeks of operation our anglers have boated a couple of hundred pike that were slot size or larger.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Two new members of the "Moose Club"

Doug Oslund, top, and Earl Vorpagel joined the Bob Preuss group "Moose Club" by each boating northern pike greater than 33 inches in length this week.
A regular member of the club watched from the shoreline.
Fishing has been more difficult this week than last although far more walleye are now being caught. I believe the difficulty in catching pike this week comes from the fact almost no one is using dead bait. Last week everyone fished with frozen ciscoes.
The water is still colder than normal for this time of year and that has meant the pike aren't as aggressive and not striking artificials as much as stationary dead bait. Still, as the photos above attest, many large pike are still being caught.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Cool photos and people

You will probably need to click on the panorama photo supplied by Chad Dercks to enlarge it and get a better view of this beautiful scene. Chad was here last week with eight other members of the Dercks clan. Many of them contributed photos from their trip to Chad's computer montage.
This was the Dercks family's first trip to Bow Narrows and they reported on leaving that the nine of them had boated 90 northern pike that were 30 inches or longer. That is very impressive and speaks to the fishing ability of this family.
The second photo shows long-time Bow Narrows angler Steve Ozark showing his affection toward a beautiful lake trout, one of many taken at camp last week. Steve and his family also caught a lot of fish -- lake trout, pike and walleye. Steve left a comment about their trip on the previous blog entry.
Last week ended with a ferocious spring storm that saw temperatures plummet to near freezing. There was also a hard, driving rain. The weather seemed to stun the fish for a couple of days; however, yesterday and today were sunny and warmer and the fish are starting to bite well again.
Overall it has been a sunny spring but cooler than normal. I don't think we have reached a normal daytime high since we have been in camp.
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