Archive for the ‘Fishing’ Category

Dunnville Catfishing

Sunday, April 11th, 2010

Catfish are pretty ugly looking, but man do they bulldog down and pull hard. Photos from our outing at the Fishmaster tackle shop on the Grand river are here.

This fish weighed in at just a hair under 16lbs.

Toronto Sportsman Show 2010

Thursday, March 18th, 2010

Went to the sportsman show tonight – picked up an after 5pm ticket for $5. For those going this year the layout breaks down like this:

  • South Building = Hunting Show
  • Walkway between North and South buildings = Fly Fishing area
  • North Building = Fishing Show

Park accordingly as there are lots in both the N & S buildings. We paid $17 for the ~4 hours we were in the lot.

There is a lot more walking than in the Direct Energy building and the locations draw distinct lines between the two disciplines.

Ice Fishing

Saturday, January 16th, 2010

Jason organized another ice fishing trip with the guys at work and guests. It might be just a bunch of guys at work going ice fishing but our business definitely doesn’t have anything to do with it because of liability, people having fun, team building, etc.

We did catch some fish! Of course bacon and eggs were made up in our mansion of a hut that Tim Hales (out of Beaverton) provided. Tip: Bacon is the easiest way to pack “oil” for frying up fish.

We were on about 8 inches of ice out where the huts were placed so the big ice machines couldn’t come out to get us. We were snowmobiled out on a hardtail sled. Nothing between you and the ice but a small piece of foam on a wooden bench. ;)

It was a bit of a slow day, we could see the bottom and a white fish was making fun of us the whole time swiming around, and between our lures. Tony pulled in the big fish of the day and won the trophy this year. A 12″ perch.

I’d do it again in a heartbeat if it wasn’t so warm down here in Southern Ontario.

Top Water Bass

Sunday, July 5th, 2009

I was able to get out on Lake Scugog and do a bit of bass hunting.

This was my first experience with baitcasters on a boat. I had prepared by doing some practice casting on shore but the backlashes were still quite legendary when a smaller jig went on. I just can’t seem to find the right settings for controlling the spool on the cast – and I can’t get the same distance either quite yet. Just need some more training.

We spent most of the day drifting around docks and through the weeds looking for lillypads and other cover and holes that would hold bass in the heat of the day. I was the only one on the boat to take a bass with a top water lure – a frog coloured hula popper. You can’t really cast into the lillypads with this lure as it has two treble hooks on the bottom and they snag up easily on the vegetation. Land it just off to the side with a path of clear water to retrieve it through.

It’s awesome to see the fish take the lure off the surface in a frenzied strike or bulged humpback take. Now I can see why so many fly fishermen are in love with dry flies.

That was my first bass on the new baitcaster. Looking forward to plenty more.

Celebrity Spotting

Monday, December 22nd, 2008

Tonight at the LCBO on Appleby and Upper Middle I was trailed into the store by Bob Izumi of the “Real Fishing Show“.

While I was star struck I didn’t bother him, he was just trying to get a bottle of wine like the rest of us and probably didn’t want to discuss if I should get a float suit or a ice shelter this year with my ice fishing budget.

Ok, stop laughing at me now. Maybe he isn’t a huge celebrity but I wouldn’t turn down a chance to talk about or better yet go fishing – with anybody.

Christmas List 2008

Wednesday, October 29th, 2008

Remember when your Mom used to make you write a list to Santa. Well now in the digital age I can do it online, update and make changes up to the night of Christmas. Of course that doesn’t mean I won’t get a lump of coal, but what can you do:

  • *NEW* Survival Suit – likely Large or XL – Bright coloured and floating for ice fishing.
  • *NEW* Programming: Principles and Practice Using C++ By Bjarne Stroustrup
  • *NEW* Paper shredder – For all this mail I’m getting with my personal information all over it.
  • Snow Shoes
  • Gators
  • Walking Poles
  • Tool Chest (Craftsman)
  • Tilly Socks – full length and the Unhole-y ones ($20/pair) – absolutely worth the cost
  • Hiking Socks – smart wool or other moisture wicking brands
  • Pants – For work and a few for play
  • Rain pants – for hiking in wet conditions – I have fleece lined winter ones, but those are too hot for non-winter activities
  • Flys for fishing in southern ontario – targeting bass, trout, and the odd pike – Check out number 3 at the link
  • SOLD OUT?
    “Fumbling with a Flyrod: Stories from the River” By Ian Colin James in hard cover if you can find one that isn’t a collectible. You’ll know it’s a collectible because it will be ridiculously expensive. Otherwise paperback is fine.
  • Waders – unfortunately a very personal purchase based on fit, value, features, etc. and are likely going to be in the $300-$500 range
  • Wader Boots – no sense buying these without having a pair of waders. Waders may come with boots as a combo.
  • Canadian Tire or Home Depot gift cards are always welcome! ;)

If it looks like most of my gifts could come from MEC – you’d be right.

Trout Pond: Shooting Fish In A Barrel

Saturday, September 27th, 2008

Chantelle and myself donned our rain gear and headed out to a trout pond in Milton called Fish4Trout.

Chantelle had my Ugly Stick spinning rod with 10 pound braid and 7 pound fluorocarbon tippet about 3 feet in length. Spinners were the best for her. Retrieve the lure just fast enough to get the blade spinning, but no faster.

I was set up with my 9′ fly rod with floating line attached to 3 feet of braid and then 3 feet of fluoro tippet just before the fly. I only used one fly all day, a green woolly bugger with some attractive flash in the tail I bought at my local fly shop in Mississagua. I need to find some time to get there on a Saturday and start tying my own flies over the winter. A great fly and well worth the $4 cost. It held up to being water logged all day and the trout pulling on it and trying to swallow it whole. Way better than the cheap Canadian Tire specials – if you can find them – that are throw aways after 2 hours of fishing.

Here are some pictures of Chantelles catch – which became our lunch. I paid the extra entrance fee for catch and release and each trout was released successfully. Anything that was killed on my fly I would have to keep and pay for, but everybody swam away after a quick hook removal. Be sure to debarb your flies which helps a lot when you are in a catch and release situation and makes the catching part more challenging – which is ok here since there always seemed to be a trout willing to take a fly.

Don’t be scared of the larger upfront cost of catch and release. If you’re a good fisherman you’ll easily land 20 or more fish in a morning and at 60 cents an inch that can add up. Besides, the pond needs that money to breed new fish for you to catch so they can replace the ~10-30% mortality rate of catch and release – even if the fish swims away.

If you ever are down on your luck and need an outing to pick up your spirits take a trip to Milton and go fishing with the folks at Fish4Trout. They were friendly, helpful, and prepared our catch for transport on ice. I’d go again.

Ice Fishing Revisited

Sunday, March 9th, 2008

Grant and I braved the snow storm from earlier in the weekend and headed out onto Lake Simcoe again to try and find some tasty perch to jump into our bucket. We were supposed to have two more come along, but the 1.5′ of snow we had dumped on us the previous day didn’t give them a warm fuzzy feeling about driving up to Keswick.

The good news is that Grant has an all wheel drive Subaru so we didn’t have any problems and the main roads were cleared in plenty of time for our arrival. The Albertan and Naval man who were supposed to join us were easy targets the next day at work for their fear of snow.

Grant and I did alright pulling in 13 and 15 fish each. A few were too tiny and had to be released, but we had about 16 eating sized fish which Grant kindly cleaned and then cooked at his place. Lauren really appreciates that!

Once again we went out with Simcoe Fishing Adventures and other than Grant forgetting his wallet in the car on shore things were great. I’d highly recommend you contact Whitey if you’re looking for a pleasant day of fishing.

Ice Fishing

Saturday, February 2nd, 2008

We had the “non-extravaganza” ice fishing day today. A bunch of guys from work get together and head up to Lake Simcoe for some ice fishing to have a few BEvERages and catch some fish.

I’m a little embarrassed and yet proud that I pulled out the largest fish today. A 1 pound rock bass. I didn’t think it would stand but the bite died off after the morning, and we moved after lunch. The move put us in a weed bed that turned out mostly smaller perch and no pike as I would have expected from a normal day on Simcoe.

Check out the photos. Thanks Whitey at Simcoe Fishing Adventures!

The Jack That Got Away

Sunday, October 21st, 2007

We all went to Grant and Chantal’s for her big 3-Oh! early surprise birthday party. After a great night of Indian food, blender alchemy, cup cakes and board games Adriana and myself woke up just after the crack of dawn to go fishing.

On the ride up to Guelph we found a live bait vending machine at a gas station (yes, I know… vending machine at a Pioneer) but they were not stocked any more since it is a little out of season now. It was too late to find a bait shop in Guelph so we were stuck with artificial tubes. After finishing our coffees with lazy fishing — cast, catch the bottom and let your bait float on a secondary line just off the bottom, wait, repeat — we decided that more active means of catching fish should be sought out. So we went back to Grants place, I dug for some worms in the garden and we tried that again in the river behind Grants.

The Jack (aka Northern Pike) showed up below the spillway in the river, it was my 3rd or 4th cast and I had him on. A beauty of a fish he made 3 or 4 good runs before tiring and calmly coming into the shallows. We had a hard time landing him as my net with a 1′ diameter and about a 1’6″ rubber netting basket was far too small. I suggested the scoop onto shore method that didn’t work out so well so I started to manhandle the fish on the line and pull him up over the 1′ break wall we were standing on. A quick bite of the line — I didn’t tie on a leader, and now I’m kicking myself for it — and the Jack was off with my lure! A short distance release.

Ah well, Adriana and myself had a good look at him struggling to get him onto shore he was easily just under two feet long and a beauty of a fish. If you catch him, and a 1 ounce blue and silver little cleo is stuck in his lip let me know. I’d like my lure back, it’s caught a few fish.