Friday was fish fry day. We needed to land a few more fish because we let our two 17″ and 16″ go. The family thought I was premature, but I really wanted to let those big ones reproduce and breed smarter fish that can outsmart predators and get just as big. I had to have faith that we were good enough fishermen to feed our family.
In the morning, I headed out to Voyager’s Bay on my own. Just as I arrived at the mouth of the bay, another boat was motoring past me into the bay. I was using a trolling motor so I was no match for their gas engine. My back was to them and as I turned to see who my competition was, they waved. But not a stranger’s wave. The driver waved like he knew me. It was ken’s cousin with his wife heading into town from their island retreat.
I went back to getting set up and since the fluke had been good to Ken, George, and I over the course of the week, I started with that again. Within a few casts, I got a hit. To my surprise, it was another small walleye. They were really active on these flukes this week. Normally, we are lucky to get one the entire week. This was our third. This one came in at 13″. Too bad Ken’s cousin didn’t see it.
Having avoided a skunk, I changed over to a green wacky worm. I tried a bunch of different areas then saw some fallen branches on the north shore. I dropped the worm in front of it and watched as the line tightened. When I went to set the hook, there was no weight, no fish, and no worm. Unfortunately, that was my last green worm so I had to switch to a black shakey worm which is all I had with me. I had my doubts that it would work as well, but I dropped it in the same spot.
Sure enough, the fish hit again. This time I got the hook into it, but not enough. After a few short seconds, it was gone and so was my second worm. I put on another black shakey worm to try again.
By now, I was only about 10 ft from the branch from the slow drifting. I dropped the third worm in the same spot and felt a slight weight on the lift. I set the hook and this time I knew I had him for sure. He turned out to be this nice 15″ smallie!
After getting the fish on my stringer, I found I had drifted about a hundred feet from the branch I caught him by. I wanted to see if it was just that one fish there or if there were others. As I motored back to the branch, I heard a splash behind me and felt my line go tight. I reacted instinctively, but missed the strike. It turns out my worm was in the water and I was unintentionally trolling with it. Apparently a fish liked that!
The only other action of the morning was when I was near the north shore of the bay and cast to the southern shore with my black wacky worm. After a couple of lifts with no hits, I reeled it back quickly and saw a follower when my bait was about 10 feet from the boat. When I let the worm drop, it took off. It looked to be comparable to the one I landed.
I found it very interesting that fish were going after quickly moving wacky rigs. I always figured it was more of a finesse rig. Have you ever caught a fish while reeling a wacky rig like a crank bait?
These two extra fish were just enough to round off our fish fry. A few of us could have enjoyed an additional fillet, but I had no problem being short a couple of fillets if it meant some big fish would be producing future big fish.
After dinner, Ken, April, and I headed out for our last evening outing. George opted to stay in. We went to a bay by Prune Lake portage and Ken landed another small walleye.
There wasn’t any other action there so we headed to Rush Creek Bay where I caught a small 9.5″ smallie. That would be the last fish of the night.
MNAngler: Smallmouth bass: 10, Walleye: 2, Northern: 1
George: Smallmouth bass: 1, Walleye: 1, Northern: 1
Ken: Walleye: 1, Northern: 1