Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Sweating it out on Mille Lacs

Welly, Kam and Ken
Well, we finally got out on Sunday with a couple of electrical engineers from work, Welly Chou and Kam Chen as well, Kam's brother Ken Chen, who is from South Dakota.  All three of these guys are super smart and we born and raised in Hong Kong.  About a month ago I took Welly and Kam out with my neighbor Lory so Kam's brother Ken was coming to Minneapolis from South Dakota and he asked if I would take them out again. Apparently he had a pretty good time during the last trip.  Never wanting to turn down an opportunity and as I stated last week, it's been kind of a fish drought, we headed up on Sunday morning and got to the lake about noon.  It was windy and hot and with a surface temperature of 76, I sensed the fishing was going to be tough and my predictions were pretty correct.  This can be a tough time of the year as the baitfish are really providing plenty for the walleyes to eat as we found out.  With the wind blowing from the south, south east I decided to try and drift a couple of the flats, a reasonable strategy this time of year.  Our first stop was 7 mile and 2 drifts from south to the north side proved slow.  I was marking a lot of fish on the graph but they were not interested in biting.  The next move was to 9 mile flat, a good choice for the end of July, again we came up with nothing.  There were a lot of fish on 9 mile, especially on the northwest corner but their jaws were sealed.  Looking back I should have simply anchored and fished the area with bobbers and leeches, it may have worked better.  Deciding that maybe the deeper inshore reefs would be good as the smallie bite was suppose to be good in these deeper areas I anchored off of the rock hump by Sherman's Point but struck out there as well.  Somewhere in this picture I was panicking as I forgot to put both my net and my tackle boxes back in the boat after I had removed them when I brought my boat back up to Frankies.  Luckily I have under the console storage and voila, both my live bait rig box and my bobber box were there and saved the day.

Because my boat move along pretty good I decided it was time to cool off so I went behind
Trophy Smallie!!!
Sherman's Point into the calmer water and punched down the throttle.  It didn't take long and we were cruising at 57 mph, these guys thought it was the greatest.  It was a nice break from fishing as well seeing's how we weren't doing to well.  My next stop was to head to the deep rock pile where we caught some the last trip, in front of Eddy's.  Getting all the rods set Welly hooked a small walleye but it got off the hook just as he got it to the boat.  That was probably good because it means it didn't swallow the hook, but it would have been nice to boat our first fish.  Oh well.  Another hour produced not even a bite so it was off to the last spot, and area always good for a nice smallmouth or rouge walleye, Indian Point.   I am still learning how to troll with my boat but am getting better at it.  Rigging up 3 lines with #5 shad raps we started by the rock pile and headed out.  Indian point is an excellent trolling location as the shallow reef is long and narrow, extending out into the lake about 1/2 a mile.  It's easy to go up one side banging the 6 foot depth then come back on the other side doing the same thing.  Right away I nailed a nice fish and trying to get one of the guys to take the pole the fish shook itself off.   10 minutes later another on hit my lure but it let loose right away, it even could have been the bottom but I doubt it.  On our 3rd pass I did finally get on in the boat, this huge smallmouth bass, must have gone 12 ounces!  Oh well, it was the only fish we got into the boat so no use complaining!  I look at this picture and I immediately think...........Does this fish make me look fat?  Of course!!   Interesting but even though it was hot I always wear my Onyx inflatable life vest as I know if I ever go overboard I doubt I could tread water for very long.  Anyway it was very hot this day and it definitely I got beat  up.  I was surprised at all the fish I marked but you can't fry up marks!

dinged up prop
The day ended on a sour note as I hit the bottom of the lake on the way in at the landing,  I am fully aware of the danger however the lake is up about 6 inches in the last few weeks because of the rain and I usually am very careful on the way in but it didn't make any difference, and my prop mades some tracks in the gravel.  There must have been some larger rocks because it really dinged up the edge of my prop.  I suppose it probably would be fine to run it this way but the motor is too expensive to chance on running something out of balance.  We stopped at Bill's on the way back and he has a guy that stops there on Tuesday, picks up damaged props then returns them on Friday. Unfortunately the Super Dooper Nylon prop wrench didn't work so good and I had to wait till I got home to take it off.  So much for that so I decided to get a standard deep well socket and breaker bar to do the job as my big fear in Canada is ruining my prop, so I carry a spare.  A lot of good that would have done with a wrench that didn't work. Well, I am going to be more prepared next time but at I found out before it was too late!  My wife, brother Steve and I picked 40# of blueberries on Saturday when we went back to Eleva to see my mom.  She is doing OK but still needs a lot of help.  This weekend is my friend Bruce's 60 birthday party and my plan is to get my jon boat going as the water levels on the Mississippi River have come down almost 4 feet so the fishing should be pretty good.  I like fishing the River, it's right in the back of my house and it's pretty easy to go out for a few hours at a time and enjoy myself.


Jeff King said...

that's an expensive prop...I'll bet more $$$ to rebuild as well ? But as we hit things waaaay more than you I have only a little experience with stainless. But the little I've run them it's amazing how much faster the old minnow goes...

Dave Anderson said...

Unfortunately there is no aluminum for my motor, Just $700 SS. $200 to fix!

KANT said...

I think Welly was too heavy in the back. Thanks for everything!!