Canadian Fly In Fishing
Canadian Fly In Fishing

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year.  We wish everyone a better year ahead than the one we are leaving behind.  We are grateful for many things and are looking towards the future with Optimism, Confidence and Hope.  2021 was better than 2020, so we are hopeful that 2022 will be a better year than 2021. πŸ™‚

 

We had a great Christmas! Everyone was home and it was lots of fun.  Jack is 3 now and the Christmas Spirit is wild in him now.  George is 1 now and is just getting going.  He was happy to finally tear open the presents he hasn’t been allowed to touch.   Santa was good to us all and laughter filled the house daily.

 

We have settled into a normal January.  It is -30 Celsius at night and only gets up to -25 during the day.  The ice on the lake has gone down fast and we have about 3 feet already.  We have gotten more snow recently which will slow the ice down a bit.  Fishing is still pretty good even though it generally slows down at this time of year when it gets this cold.  We move some of our nets from closer to shore out to some reefs a few miles out during this time of year.  As spring approaches, the fish leave the reefs and head for shore to spawn and we chase them, hoping for one last run at catching them before the ice goes.

When you fish that far from shore, the horizon looks like this most days.  We live in a small bubble of 200-300 yards of visibility.  Thank goodness for GPS now.  We used to have to mark our trails with spruce boughs every few hundred yards and put up tall markers hear and there to navigate.  Sometimes walking in front of the Bombardier in the headlights to stay on the road to get home during the storms

 

We also have to compete with an Otter.  Those buggers like fish.  The lake normally has pressure ridges or cracks that work back and forth as the ice contracts and expands with the temperature.  The Otter finds a place near our nets to get through the ice and then swims over and feasts.  Easy picking for him as the fish are just waiting there.  It adds up over time, each walleye is worth $4-5.  He normally gets as far out as 2 nets, eating anywhere from 4 to 10 fish each time.

When it gets this cold, the Otter has trouble finding open water.  We rarely see the Otters, but he made a mistake the other day as he came from behind us in the middle of the day.  It was because he could smell the water we think.  Dustee saw him first and the fight was on!  She got bitten a couple times but got ahold of his neck after I gave him a wallop with a hockey stick!  

Dates for 2022

Our season is looking good for 2022.  We do still have some open dates here and there throughout the season.  Here are a few dates that are available right now:

Cherrington Point July 2-6, 2022 and July 16-21, 2022

Vee Lake July 15-19, 2022

Shearstone Lake July 1-6, 2022

Cobham River August 20-27, 2022

Cobham Daniel August 8-13, 2022

Loree Lake August 17-22, 2022

Click here if you have any questions or if you would like to book one of these dates

Back on the Hard Water

Winter has set in and we are back on Lake Manitoba commercial fishing.  Many of the lakes in the north have not frozen over yet but this lake is quite shallow and freezes sooner than lakes which are deep and have current.  

We have 9 or 10 inches of ice already.  There is not much snow on the ice and the ice has been going down pretty fast even though we have not been very cold.  It definitely makes your winter go by faster when winter is late in showing up. Before you know it the days will be getting longer and we will be getting ready for another season in Red Lake.

The Jigger takes our line out and then we have to go find it.  Pretty easy when the ice looks like this.  We were on about 3 inches of ice that day but it is a bit tougher to find through 4 feet of ice covered in snow on a windy day though.  There is a small tapper that helps us find it.

My Great Nephew Brey came out there to help us set a few nets.  Another generation that loves it out on the lake.

We get to see some awesome sights out there.  The sky always seems so big.  But this place can also be like hell during a storm.

It is hard to stand on this kind of ice, so we use snowmobile track screws on the bottom of our boots.  The first day I was out there, mine were wore out and it was windy.  It makes for a frustrating day if you can not move around.

Dustee is a pretty unique dog.  When the ice is smooth like this she will ride on the sleigh over the rough ice just like this for miles.

And this is why we do it.  Walleyes are our main target but they buy pretty much all species of fish that we catch.  These are worth the most and most of them normally head to restaurants in the USA as well as Canada.

We see thousands of fish each day and see some pretty strange variations.  This is a Tullibee, normally a nice silver but this one was very red and a little while later we caught one that was yellow.

At the end of each day we take our fish to town and pack them in ice to ship to Winnipeg and be processed.  

Our family has been fishing on Lake Manitoba for 4 generations.  This lake has been good to us and the surrounding area.  Generating a lot of money for the local economy.  Back in the day, every farmer along the lake was a fishermen.  The number of fishermen has dropped in the past years since there is no guarantee of making enough money.  It is a great place to work in nature and make some money if you work hard at it.  I feel fortunate to be able to carry on the tradition.

Dates for 2022

After the border closure and shortened season this year we have fewer available dates open at this time than we normally would, which is good for us but not always good for getting people the dates or lake that they may want.  We do have openings left for 2022 but just want to remind anyone interested in fishing with us next season to be flexible if possible on dates.  We will do our best to accommodate you.  Here is the link for reservations.

 

Amik Outposts Gear

If you are looking for a unique gift for Christmas, check out our Online Store.  Anything you order will be made in the USA and shipped to you.  Here is the link to our Shop Amik Page.

Amik Outposts on Instagram

Our Instagram Page has been growing in leaps and bounds this summer.  Taina has been doing a great job capturing the essence of our business and showing it to the world.  Many of our reels and photos have gone viral already.  Check some of them out here.  Amik Outposts Instagram.

 

Back in the Saddle.

It has been great so far.  Our guests have been so happy to see us and even happier to be back in the bush.  

Once the border opened, so did the heavens.  We have had a ton of rain since the beginning of August.  More than 12 inches up north with less towards Findlay and Loree and down south.  The Cobham, Vee, Cherrington and Blackbirch have come up 3 feet!  It has made moving people interesting at times and a few fishermen got some extra nights in the bush because of it, but we got everyone moved safely when Mother Nature decided to let us finish the job.

The fresh water and increased flow have put the fish near the moving water.  They are also still on the mid-lake reefs.  Basically everywhere.  They are very active.  Pike attacks are common on small walleye right now as well.  Many guests so far have said that the fishing has been the best that they have ever had, numbers and size.  Tons of walleyes 25 plus and most groups catching a number of 40 plus pike.  The high water seems to have made them go crazy.  The camps are running well with very few problems.  It feels great to be back in business and to be doing what we were meant to do.  We have gotten lots of pictures from our guests and we will be doing a fishing wrap up soon.

Life needs water and the north is full of it.  There is lots of green already showing up in the burn and there are other signs of life like mushrooms growing already.

Amik Outposts on Instagram.

Taina has been doing a great job on our Instagram page.   We have seen a ton of new traffic and are gaining quite the following.  Some of our videos have gone viral! πŸ™‚ 

Here is the link to Amik Outposts Instagram.

Here are some links to some of the Reels:

A day in the life.

Things are looking up.

Jumping into a new week.

This is John.

Jack got to make his first overnight trip to the bush with the boys.  No mom.  He was perfect.  Almost 3, he is a handful at times.  But put him in the bush with just me and Aaron he was so happy.  He helped us rebuild a new outhouse at the Point cabin and caught his first fish on his own!  The fishing right above the rapids at the pullover was awesome in 6 to 10 feet.  He had 4 or 5 on before Aaron and I had 2.  It was pretty awesome to see the light switch turn on when he figured it out.

 

 

We are ready.

We are very excited to be ready to welcome our guests once again!

The camps are all ready to go, the forest fires have calmed down considerably, the fish are patiently waiting in 12 to 15 feet of water, the Otter is sitting at the dock and we all have smiles on our faces.  Anxiously waiting for the gates to open.  We have some Canadian fishermen in the bush who will be coming out when our first American guests go in.  

Our booking sheet has changed a million times in the last while as you can imagine.  We do have openings that we would like to fill with anyone who still wants to go fishing this season.  Here are some dates that we have available:

Jeanette Lake August 17-22, 2021

Shearstone Lake August 30- September 4, 2021

Loree Lake August 31 – September 7, 2021

Findlay Lake August 30- September 3, 2021

Vee Lake August 19-24, 2021 and also September 8-13, 2021

Cobham Daniel August 20-24, 2021

Cobham Morley August 14-20, 2021 and also August 26-31, 2021

We always do our best to be efficient and to get our guests moved in and out as quickly.  Please let us know if you would like more information on any of these dates.  

 

BlackBirch Update.

We have secured a cabin for the rebuild and we expect delivery in early September.  It will be slightly larger than the old cabin with a different layout. Once we get rolling with our fishermen once again we will begin to fly in the floor and get started.  We will keep everyone updated on the progress.

 

 

Ready for a fight!

We are ready for anything.  Including the Reopening of the Border!  Half of our camps are all ready to go and the others are being cleaned up as I move around saving cabins from the fire.  We do have bad news though.  Blackbirch cabin is gone due to the fire.  I will give more details in my story.

 We have been dealing with fires for almost a month and I have not been home very much.  I have been up north almost every night since the end of June, preparing camps for the fire as it gets closer.  The fire we are dealing with is very big and started at the end of June, SE of the Cherrington cabins.  It now stretches from west of Cherrington, south of Blackbirch and goes a long ways east to Vee Lake, where as of yesterday, it had stopped on the entire south shore of Vee, the east side has burned into a huge area with lots of lakes and slowed down considerably.  Rain is possible in the forecast so let’s hope we can get some moisture and put this one behind us.

 

Around July 1, I headed north to Cherrington because we heard a fire was close.  Once I got there I could see that I was staying until it was dealt with.  I have been getting pretty good at predicting when the fire will come.  That is not a good talent to have if you have to be doing that week after week.

We would have 2 days to prepare.  There was a fire crew at Cherrington when I got there putting up a sprinkler system.  We are very grateful for that, without it we would not have had anything left.  I brought our own pump and hose so I began flooding the bush behind the camps starting at the Bay cabin because that is where it was going to come from over the high ground.  2 days proved not to be enough time.  

At 2:30 on July 3rd, I went for a quick flight to check on the fire.  It was a very short flight.  The fire was going to be here in an hour….. The firefighters and I kept flooding and waited for the fire.  It came.  Hard enough we had to retreat as it was tree topping at 3:33 on July 3.

Once the wall of fire hit the wet bush it stopped. Just like that.  The fire crew began putting out the flames and I began moving our pump to the Point to get ready for the next wave.  

As I got the hose set up near the outhouse at the Point, I could hear it coming again.  The sound is like a train. And when it fires up, you know it is coming.  There is a high rock behind the Point and when it came over that rock it was moving fast.  Time to get out of the way.

The fire came and rolled right over the Point cabin and was headed towards the Lodge.  The cabin disappeared in the flames and smoke.  I was standing on the rock in front of the cabin and the fire was paralleling us.  The fire crew thought I was nuts as I was giving it the finger and yelling at it. πŸ™‚ 

The fire charged over the cabin and the cabin appeared in the smoke with the sprinklers still running, no flames on it!  Then the fire continued towards the Lodge and Bay cabin.  It hit the next wall of water and slowed down and then it didn’t take long and away it went again, heading towards the Lodge.  I dragged the burning hose out of the fire and began putting it out as the fire moved on.  The fire burnt the MNR fire hose so then the sprinkler system went down.  The fire crew then had to back away in a boat, as the fire was burning right by the fuel shed.  I came by boat from the Point, no pump set up now and the fire is 10 feet from the building.  So I grabbed a bucket. Lol.  I put it out as best as I could with a pail, then went and got the pump.  As the fire by the fuel shed was mostly out, I hear flames again.  Looking at the Point, the trees right by the fuel tank are going up to the top with fire.  So I load up the pump and go and put those out.  We repaired the hose that burnt shortly after and the sprinklers were back up and running.  I slept there that night, so did Dustee.  When the fire hit, I put her in the airplane.  She knew bad things were happening.  She was covered in burnt pine needles inside because I forgot to close the windows.  I left her home for the next fires.

The best way to describe it is that it was violent.  Tall trees and having it hit at the hottest time of the day.  It was 90+ that day.  Every fire I go through, I learn more about preparation and assessing the weak points. 

The fire crew spent the night at Showalter’s cabin but I stayed up till 11 pm putting out hotspots around my cabin.  I slept great (with the sprinklers running all night) as the fire continued to burn around both sides of the bay.  The landscape has changed but the trees will grow again. 

 

The fire crew stayed and put out the fire around the camp.  I was moving to BlackBirch.  No more fire crew help for me as they were needed elsewhere but I was very grateful to have had them for this fire protecting 3 cabins.

The Blackbirch chapter of this story was different.  I had about 3 days to prepare.  Soaking the hill behind camp and over the ridge.  All while the sprinklers were wetting down the camp.  The fire came slowly against the hot southwest wind.  The sights and sounds as it burnt the big timber on the east end of the lake were wild.  huge plums of smoke, fish biting like crazy, all as I was getting rained on by burnt pine needles and even full on pine cones!

The fire came in the morning on July 9.  Slowly,  it was much easier to deal with than the Cherrington fire.  Although I didn’t have enough hose to reach the far side of the ridge, so I was prepared this time with a water backpack and a bucket.  It was hard to keep the fire from getting across the rock as it was so hot and so dry.  I had some trying moments but was able to protect the whole area and walk the fire to the west shore much easier once I got into hose distance.  My one weak point was that the point west of the cabin had a bunch of dead wind blown trees.  I stopped the fire from reaching that area.  I spent another couple of days putting out hot spots around the cabin and felt confident that it would be ok…..

I left for home. Feeling good.   We can see hot spots on a satellite website and the next couple days we could see the fire getting out of hand once again around the cabin and across the lake on either side.  The next day we had 90+ degrees and a hurricane wind out of the SW changing to west.  I had enough sense to know that it was not a day to be in the air or in front of a fire.  No one could get in to fill up the sprinklers, although I don’t know it would have saved  the cabin in that wind.  The fire looks like it came from the trappers cabin to the west in a long wicked charge.  Ignited the trees on the point, burnt hard up to the edge of the water by the outhouses.  Jumped to the cabin and that was it.  It had to have started underneath or on the roof.  It burned from the inside out.  This is the last picture of the cabin at Blackbirch when I left.

The BBQ was 8 feet away and only melted the knobs.

We have plans in the works already to replace the cabin and hope to have it done or almost done by fall.  One positive, the shed (full of gas and propane), the boats and motors, both outhouses and even the gazebo are still standing.  We only have to build a cabin.  We will do our best and we now have a carpenter on staff πŸ™‚ 

The fire, same fire, also headed for Vee Lake during that windy day.  It ended up right south of the camp, west as well as east.  I then went to stay there until this passes once again.

I had a full sprinkler system set up running on the cabin as well as 4 nozzles and 2 pumps.  I am getting smarter and more experienced with this fire business.  I took enough food for 3 days and beer for a week and then was there for 8 days.  I ate a lot of fish. πŸ™‚

 

The fire came 2 days after I got there.  It crested the hill at 8 pm.  Much better time of day for it to come near.  I was hoping in the evening and overnight that the fire would calm and slowly burn towards the lake.  I left the sprinklers running that night and then things started to change in our favor.  The wind switched to the east and it got a lot cooler.  I had one more full day of waiting and watching and patrolling the island to watch for jumper fires.  Then it always gets really smokey before something good will happen.  I got socked right in with smoke but that night it rained!  More than half an inch.  Not a ton but enough to help me out and pretty much squash the fire near the camp.  Cherrington and Blackbirch did not get any rain.  So that side of the fire still survives.  So far the fire is holding along the entire south shore of Vee Lake.  I will be back tomorrow to keep an eye on things and start to ready the remaining camps.  Lets hope the rain comes.

 

As for the excitement of the border opening up again.  The only thing I want to remind all of our guests after all the Bulls#!t we have endured.  Get back to a simpler life, a simpler trip.  Less electronics, less junk.  Keep your weight down, leave that sh!t at home.  Bare minimum.  You will be much happier for it.  And so will I πŸ˜‰

 

This was some pop cans that came up at the portage at Cherrington.  Garbage from the 1980’s when the fire went through last.  Growing under a tree for 40 years.  Pretty much preserved.  

Staying Positive

Amik Outposts now has their own account on Instagram! Rena and Taina are going to maintain our new account and keep up on the content from a different point of view.  Please tag us in any of your new or old photos taken while fishing with us in the past.  Pass the word around to your group as well as your families.  We would appreciate it.  Here is the link.  @AmikOutposts

This is a sight that will make everyone jealous…. or angry. 

We are back in the bush!  We have the airplanes in the water and have been in the bush a few times.  Water levels are slightly down but we have had some rain.  The bush has turned green now and with the moisture, we are past the risky time of forest fires for now.  There was a number of fires already burning but have since been put out by the last rainfall.  The sky is clear and clean.

We took a load of motors to Cherrington and spent the night on the weekend.  Of course we had to take our newest addition George for his first airplane and boat ride.

It was a crazy windy day but we once we had unloaded and got the camp fired up we were going fishing!

Here is the first fish of 2021.  The first one to be eaten as well πŸ™‚

We had a tough time staying on the fish in the big wind so we headed to the rapids and fished from shore.  The fish were biting hard there.  So were the black flies but it was windy enough to keep them at bay most of the time.  Jack is already a good fisherman. He fished hard with his little rod but didn’t catch any fish that day but he sure had a good day. Fishing with us, being in the bush, and an Otter ride.

It is cool to have our Grandkids walk in the same footsteps our kids did at Cherrington.  I have taken the place of my Mom, being the patient one who gets asked a million questions.  It is great. πŸ™‚

As for the serious part of our life.  We have to say that we have such great and understanding guests who care about us and our business.  We appreciate you so much.

We are rolling our people and deposits over to 2022 as we hear more on each unconstitutional border closure as it is pushed upon us.  We are only addressing the groups right now that are affected up until June 21st.  Some guests have re-booked for later in the season, hoping for the border to open soon and some have moved over to 2022.  We are holding out hope for some better news one of these days but that seems to be a tall order in Canada.  

We will survive.  We are smarter than your average bear and willing to do whatever it takes.  We will keep in touch and be ready to go when the border finally opens.  In the mean time, we have been fortunate enough to get a little flying work for the Otter, flying for some construction companies in the north. It isn’t much but at least it is a start.

 

We will be ready…..

Being an eternal optimist, I am always holding out hope and hoping that the border will open again soon.  We have gone through every emotion imaginable during the past year numerous times.  Mostly anger and disbelief that we have shuttered the world’s economy for something that has a higher than 99.9% survival rate.  

We have started to get ready for the upcoming season even though we do not know what the future holds.  The airplanes are our biggest expense and they are not like having a car that when you need it that you can just turn the key and go.  Maintenance needs to be done, paperwork needs to be filled out, training needs to be done.  We have to make decisions on insurance, taxes, etc etc.  It still costs us to stay in business, despite not having any customers or much income.  We have had a plan all along but it has just changed 12 times in the past 12 months at least!  

There are a few words you will never see me use anymore. V!ru$, P@ndem!c, Co^!d, or anything to do with the Bullshit that we have been forced to endure.  

Here is a great well written article from one of our associations we belong to which really sums up how all the camp owners are feeling up here as we wait patiently for our friends and guests to be allowed to cross the border and enjoy nature.

We do not have anything new to report at this time but we will be letting you all know as soon as we do.  I have a gut feeling that something good is going to happen yet…..

Thank you Gerry from Sunset Country for writing this, we appreciate all you have done and continue to do.

 

The sights, sounds, and experiences of Sunset Country are unmatched anywhere in the world. This place stirs the soul of every angler, hunter, paddler and adventurer who casts a line, swings a gun, or sets up camp among its pristine, pine-studded shorelines. 

Whether it’s escaping from the hustle and bustle of urban life, or simply seeking a deeper connection to the things that really matter – clean air and water, abundant fish and game, and quality time spent with family and friends – you’ll find what you’re looking for in Sunset Country.

Days begin with colorful sunbeams dancing across one of 70,000 fishable lakes, highlighting the birch trees and awakening the resident chickadees. Cool breezes carry the faint scent of pine as a reminder that tall buildings, long lines, work deadlines and annual performance evaluations no longer matter – at least for a while. 

The cry of a passing loon alerts you to grab your coffee and head down to the dock, because the hungry walleyes that swim in these crystal-clear waters wait for no one. The silence is pierced only by the hum of a small but stout outboard, carrying you past granite bluffs and isolated islands to your destination: a pristine reef, hidden just beneath the surface and teeming with fish, just as it has been for generations.

 

Noon is highlighted by Sunset Country’s most sacred tradition: shore lunch, complete with fresh walleye, hot beans, and fried potatoes and onions all cooked to perfection over a crackling fire. Then, it’s time to head out to chase more fish; perhaps lake trout from the inky depths, or musky prowling near the wild rice beds that you spotted during the world’s best morning commute. 

Or maybe, as the green leaves of summer fade to dazzling shades of crimson and yellow, it’s time to don an orange vest, load shells into your gun, and march through the pines and alders in search of grouse. Fins, feathers, and fur – you’ll find them all in Sunset Country.

Sounds like a dream, doesn’t it? Happily, these experiences have been a reality for many thousands of Americans who, for generations, have made annual trips to this sportsman’s paradise – that is, until the COVID-19 pandemic hit. A halt to non-essential cross-border traffic stopped the flow of anglers, hunters, and adventurers across the border, and for many Sunset Country resorts, restaurants and guides, those same dreams have become a nightmare. 

 

“I take calls from people that have been visiting the area for generations that are beside themselves. They are really upset that they can’t cross the border. I spoke with a gentleman the other day that was pretty choked up. This would be his 50th year to vacation here and he had to cancel,” said Gerry Cariou, Executive Director, Norwestario Travel Association Inc. A trip to the wilderness areas of Northern Ontario is a rite of passage for many people – one which the pandemic has temporarily suspended.

 

Paradise and the Pandemic

March 16, 2021 marked the one-year anniversary of the pandemic wall between the US and Canada. Throughout the past year, there would be periodic discussions of border open dates; however, each time, the government would provide only three days’ notice of a potential border opening. This of course caused a host of problems for travelers, but it was also extremely challenging for the wilderness areas of Northern Ontario and the resort owners and guides that live and work there. Not only were American guests trapped south of the border, but with such short notice, resorts also couldn’t offer reservations to Canadians, as they could end up double-booked if the border were to unexpectedly reopen.

Can any business survive without revenue?

The wilderness area of northwest Ontario boasts more lakes than people. It consists of 60,000 square miles of woods and waters and supports a population of around 68,000. Over 70,000 lakes blanket the area, with the largest being Lake of the Woods. Because of its northern climate, this area has a short operating season; during the prime travel month of June, there are more Americans in Sunset Country than Canadians. 

The pandemic has had a huge impact on tourism, especially for sportfishing. Going back to the 1920’s and 30’s, tourism has been almost entirely reliant on American visitors – but not this year. Many operators live throughout the winter on deposits made by visitors for peak season travel and accommodations. When the border closure was announced, many would-be visitors started requesting the return of their deposits. This created quite the dilemma-how would the resorts, and the people that work there, survive? Many of these resorts have had no income since October 2019. Could you live on 10% of your income for 24 months? 

At least 90% of guests to this area originate in the United States. Area resorts can’t replace those numbers without the return of the American anglers and hunters. Indeed, while Americans tend to stay a week or two in Sunset Country, Canadian residents may only travel for a short staycation: a couple of days or a long weekend. 

Pandemic impacts on Sunset Country tourism have been worse than just about anywhere else. Here, nine out of ten resorters have experienced a 100% revenue loss. The Canadian government has offered loans to help, but at this point, the area has already lost two irreplaceable seasons. 

 

Legendary angler Gord Ellis guides out of Quebec Lodge in Thunder Bay, Ontario. He commented that the angling sector of the Sunset Country economy lost $380 million last year. “No one knows when it will open up. It’s pretty gloomy,” Ellis noted. Consider this: Thunder Bay has a population of 120,000. Their tourism sector lost between $80 – 100 million dollars – devastating for a town of this size – and this is just one example. “During the summertime, 70-80% of my guide trip clients are American anglers, said Ellis. “I didn’t see them at all this year. I picked up some Canadian resident customers but not a lot. It’s frustrating, but I know the whole world is affected. We just try to take everything day-to-day. There’s no way to know when it will change.”

But eventually, things will change and we will happily get back to normal. The pandemic border wall will crumble and once again, American anglers, hunters, paddlers and adventurers will move freely across the border. Sunset Country resorts, restaurants and guides have welcomed tourists to their lakes, streams, hills and forests for generations – and they’ve missed you more than you know. While so many things in the world that we all share have changed dramatically during the past year, the waters and woods of Sunset Country are just as you remember them – wild, teeming with fish and game, and of course, home to world-class hospitality. They look forward to hosting you once again!

To begin planning your next Sunset Country vacation, visit visitsunsetcountry.com

For information on traveling to Canada, visit travel.gc.ca/travel-covid/

Back to the Prairies

It was a long shift. I am back from the North for the first time since last fall.  Like many outfitters we have had to take on another job to ensure survival as the Border Closure continues to plague our Industry.  I was fortunate to find a job that I enjoyed, kept busy at and was right where I belong, in the bush.  

 

We had some warm weather at times this winter but it was -38 C when I left on Saturday. Pretty normal amount of snow, almost up to your waist in the bush.

Dustee and I saw a Lynx and got to watch it for 15 minutes. It was not concerned with us at all and Dustee knew that she did not want to tackle that cat πŸ™‚

 

I had a friend stop by on skis to say Hi a couple of times and to bring me some essentials.

As we are approaching 90 days or so from the start of our season, we are in the dark as anyone as to when the USA/Canadian Border will reopen.

It is impossible to make any kind of a long term, or even a short term plan when the government moves the goal posts further away month by month.  Please do not hesitate to email or call us if you have any questions.  As soon as we have any information regarding Non-Essential Travel across the border we will pass it on.

Please bear with us as we wait anxiously for better days.  I think there are plenty of people who need some time in the bush away from civilization right now…..

Happy New Year

Happy New Years to all of our guests.  We are looking forward to a different year than the one that just passed.  I am sure everyone is thinking the same thing.  We are always positive type people and try to look back and think about what went right this year.  We have a second Grandson, I got to spend a lot of time fishing, flying and working one on one with my son in law Aaron, we did quite a bit of work on the camps, found some work to ensure our survival, shot 2 moose so we have plenty of meat, and most of all…. we are very booked up for the 2021 season!  Plenty of good things happened that we are grateful for.  We understand that a positive attitude and outlook will bring a better result than a negative one 😁 

This is only the second time Rena and I have not spent New Years together.  The last time…. I was in the bush, stuck in bad weather flying on skis.  This year I am travelling around by chopper and a Sherp.  It will be party time when I get home.  

Here is the link to our Online Shop in case someone is in need of a late Christmas gift.  Thank you to everyone who has made orders so far. Amik Online Shop

Dustee and I went to Loree lake today and picked up some trail cameras I left in the fall.  After a quick look, there was a few moose, some beavers, a lynx, a wolf and some foxes.  I will do a blog when I get home in a month about what happens in one place in the bush over a few months.  Here are some pictures from our outing today. 
I didn’t even tell her we were going flying. She over heard us talking and went and got right inside.  She is so smart.


 

 

 

 

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas!  We hope everyone is doing well and has plans to get together with family and friends during the holiday season. Regardless of what your so called health officials want you to do.  This year has been one for the books and continues to be.  I will be in the bush for awhile yet.  This Christmas will be spent at Knox Lake.  Not far north of Loree lake.  I am staying through the holidays until the end of January. The days will be getting longer when I get home.  It will be a bit of a long shift by the end. 4 and a half months.  I refuse to be β€œtested” so that is the trade off. I just am not leaving, and staying in the bubble, which I have been in since the last spring.   Good thing Rena grew up in the military and being apart for long periods of time was part of it.  She is looking after all things important and I am doing what I do.  Spending the winter in the bush, working and having a purpose 24-7, with no one really telling me what to do.  

 

We wish all of our guests a very Merry Christmas and a Great New Year!  We can’t go any where but up, rest assured we are doing well mentally and physically.  We are looking forward to next season, Taina, Aaron and the boys are loving the business as we did when we got started. We make a good team and are looking forward to the future.

 

I don’t have too many pictures but I do have one achievement to share, I am fortunate enough to have caught fish in each and every month of the year this year on the hook.  I have a lake near me on both sides that have plenty of fish down the winter road a ways.  I have been packing and checking ice depth.  I also like to check what is going on under the ice.  Walleyes and like are in 4-6 feet of water and were hot and heavy the first time but have slowed down as it is almost -30 now at night. Winter road crews and caterpillar mechanics have been working up here as they get prepared to clear the right of way for the line. My job is always changing, catching choppers, some hauling pick up trucks and equipment, servicing generators, plowing snow, hauling water mostly and camp stuff, the sewage in extreme cold is fun. πŸ™‚ as long as you have things running right. 

We appreciate all of our guests and all the phone calls as we emails of support. We run a tight ship and are ready for what ever puts itself in front of us.  

 

Here are some pictures from the north.

This is home. Knox lake in the distance. That’s where the water comes from.

 

 


I only had one rod. So I made one from some small jack pines and fire line. They worked awesome.

I had tools to take back to Loree and also had to pick up my fishing gear. Dustee had to come along of course.


Our online store is also still going well. Here is the link for that as well. It is on the menu page at the top of our website. 

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

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