Friday, February 22, 2013

The Drought Continues

Greg's 30 inch Walleye from Mille Lacs
 Another week, another fish-less day on the water.  Looking back at the year, the last successful day ice fishing goes way back to the weekend of December 28 when I was on Red Lake with Mark.  Although I have caught fish during the last 2 months, I really haven't kept more than 5 "I almost should have thrown back" sunfish.  A couple of weeks ago we tried Green Lake by Princeton with limited success however Pete saw a bunch of crappies on the camera and Jason did manage to keep 6.  Attributing this to a tough bite I decided to head back there on Sunday, I mean really, what's the chances of striking out 2 times in a row?  Well, I can tell you that it was pretty good! Picking up my neighbor Tom, we headed north to Green.  This time I brought my HDS7 which has depth maps of the most popular lakes in Minnesota, maybe a better understanding of the lake would increase our luck.  Arriving at the lake, Green was not one of the lakes that had any information on much for that plan.  We ended up going back to our spot from last weekend knowing that at least there was some fish there.  Like the movie Groundhog Day, I felt like Bill Murray's character, living the same scene over again.  I guess there isn't much else to tell.  So this week's picture is of a friend, Greg Jones.  A follower of this blog, we met in Anaheim attending the same week long trade show.  The first thing to come out of his mouth was how well they did on Mille Lacs the weekend before, catching quite a few fish including this 30 inch walleye.  With my luck lately, that's the last thing I needed to hear! I am glad someone is catching fish and it's great to have him share the memories with me.  That's a beautiful fish and will look great mounted on the wall of his office.  I guess I should have drove further north. 

Pickled Alaskan Silver Salmon

This week is the last weekend for inland walleye fishing.  It stays open into April on Lake of the Woods and is year around on the Mississippi River.  I usually have a chance to fish Mille Lacs more yet my travel schedule has been quite filled up lately as the year is flying by.  My quest for a crappie dinner has also influenced my Mille Lacs experience this year.  Last year I had 3 very successful outings on the big lake bringing home my limit of walleyes each time.  Maybe it's just hard to get excited about the current situation at Mille Lacs, something I will save for a future post or two, or three.  So in the absence of cooking fish I decided to make some pickled salmon from the fish I caught in Alaska.  Searching the Internet the perfect looking recipe appeared.   Using about 4 pounds of fillets the first thing was to skin and cut into chunks.  A 24 hour soak in 1 cup of salt to 4 cups of water then another 24 hour soak in white vinegar and it was ready for the brine.  A simple brine of 1 cup vinegar, 1 cup water, 1 cup sugar, pickling spice, and the special ingredient, 1 cup of white port and just not any white port...Fairbanks White Port.  Uffda, was that hard to find.  I did find it in a 1.5 liter bottle, cheap and sweet, I told the clerk at the liquor store that there was enough for both the fish and I to get pickled.  Using red onions I figured that if nothing else the jar would look nice.  It'll be ready in a couple of weeks and I hope it's as good as it looks.  With halibut left in the freezer, that might be my next thing to try unless of course we can find some tullibees on Mille Lacs in a few weeks.

This weekend is busy and if I do get out it will only be for a few hours again.  Mark asked me if I wanted to fish the Perch Extravaganza on Mille Lacs but I have another engagement I need to attend.  Sunday may find me down on the river with my friend Kevin, we will have to see how that turns out.  Oh well, it snowed again and that will keep me busy for a while.  We have actually had some decent snow this year and maybe I'll get a chance to take out my snowmobile for a ride.  I know that we need the moisture as the Mississippi River behind the house was awfully low this fall.  Here's to changing luck!

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