Canadian Fly In Fishing
Canadian Fly In Fishing

Finally got some Rain!

I realize that the Blog has been lacking lately.  We have been busy and when we were not busy we were trying to get the flying done.  It has been very difficult to get our people moved each day.  There were some monster forest fires, NW, North and NE of Red Lake which created a wall of smoke which we had to deal with each day.  Sometimes going over top of the smoke, going through the smoke or going around the smoke.  We had lots of delays and a few fishermen on each end that had to wait an extra day to get moved.  

Being an optimist I knew we would get rain eventually and that things could change in a matter of a few hours……..if we could just get some rain.

Finally we had some big rains and some crazy weather that put out the fires closest to Red Lake, making all of the pilots lives easier around here!

Most of the fires are out now.  We only had one fire that was a concern, right near our Cobham Daniel cabin.  It was a bit of a thorn in our side as it burned on and off for more than a month.  Of course it got quite close to the cabin right before it rained.  Aaron and I spent many nights and days at Daniel, doing the trips in reverse and staying with guests in order to keep an eye on the fire.  The MNR was quite busy with fires near communities and we were not much of a priority.  They did check on us every couple of days and supplied us with a pump and sprinkler system but we took it upon ourselves to make sure the fire did not come and take out one of our most popular cabins.   We had our own pumps and hose to continually keep wetting down the forest around and behind the cabin and ran water almost all day every day that the fire was active.  We also cleaned up all the downed trees and any other fuel that was around the cabin and hauled it farther away just in case.  It has been hot and dry so being wet all day working under the sprinklers was a relief.

The rain finally came and put 98% of the fire out.  We are supposed to get some more rain soon which should finish it off.  We also need some rain to maintain our water levels in the North.  The water has been dropping but just like the fires, it can all change in a short period of time.  🙂

Our guests had occasional smoke but generally the guests didn’t have too many smoky days while they were fishing. The wind kept it one side of them or the other.   We need to move everyone safely and do our best to do it in a timely manner.  I have been telling myself that we will sacrifice some flying time for some rain and not complain. 

Fishing has been awesome along with this great weather, so everyone has been happy and understanding of the issues with flying and the fires.  The mayflies hatched during the first week of July and the walleyes have been shallow 4-6 feet but have started to move to their summer spots.  10-12 feet recently.  Pike slowed down a bit during the hot weather and were just feasting on walleye.  T-bone attacks were pretty common for a while with a few fishermen able to land 2 fish at once!  

We have gotten lots of pictures from our guests who have been up recently and I hope to get some of them up on my blog soon.  We are hoping that we can get into a normal routine again after the fire part of the season.

Here are some pictures that I have taken during the last few weeks.

The fire is a living breathing organism.  It fires up some days and calms down others.  You can feel the air when it is a fire day.  The fire started NW of the camp by the rapids and went right by the camp and finished about 2-3 miles east of the camp where it continues to smolder in some big timber today.

The fires around Red Lake turned into monsters and took a few cabins from some lodges and outposts and plenty of close calls.  It was pretty intense at times for many of the other outfitters.

By each afternoon even on a calm day this is what the fire would look like.  

This was right behind the camp at Daniel as the fire was moving away.  

Then each evening it would calm down and let us have a couple of beverages and calm down.  It was a good lesson in patience and diligence that is for sure.   Being ready and preparing for something that you don’t know if it is going to show up.  Never turning your back on it, always ready to get back up there depending on the weather forecast.  Up there everyday and willing to stay right there if the fire came back to life, which it did every few days.

 

Then when the weather broke and it finally rained my buddy Eddie and I both got stuck up north one evening.  We were not able to get through the smoke and thunderstorms.  We ended up we3st of our normal track trying to get home.  With our experience, we know good places to get stuck.  We both had a load of guests but we found a full service lodge where they had a bed, food and beer.  All outfitters are competitors but we are all friends and look after each other.  They looked after us and treated us like gold.  We were very thankful and appreciative to Dogskin and their staff.  

Of course the rain missed the far north and the Cobham fire survived for another week.  This was on my way north on the day we finally got the heavy rain we needed to put some hurt on the fire.  Racing a line of storms, the sky looks pretty cool.

Once I got to the Cobham and looked back, we were not going home for awhile.  Sit tight and wait until it gets better before heading home…..

Daniels cabin is right in the middle of this picture, we are happy to say, still standing.  

Time Flies!

We have been going hard, flying everyday and moving happy people to and from the bush.  There has been many stories of awesome fishing, t-bone attacks, countless walleye.  Large pike were feeding heavy more than a week ago but have slowed down a bit in the heat.  The biggest pike have been caught walleye fishing, which is what they are eating 🙂 The fish have been in every depth from 2 feet to 17 feet in the last couple of weeks.  The walleyes are in about 12 feet now and will come up shallow for awhile in July soon, right near the fast growing weeds.

 

It has been hot and dry and water levels are going down.  Some rain would be nice.  There are a couple of fires burning and depending on the wind we may experience some smoke in the air.  There is no fire ban on yet but we are telling our guests no fires unless it rains.  It looks like we should get some soon.

Here are some pictures our guests have shared with us recently.

Trey M. and his crew from Texas were up with us in the very early 90’s when my Mom and Dad were first getting the main lodge on Deer Lake running and Findlay was a day fishing lake from the main lodge.   He has been planning on getting back up here for awhile now, trying to explain to his friends how great it is to be in the bush, but pictures don’t do it justice.  Once you experience the silence and superb fishing, you will be hooked.  These Texans are already looking forward to the next one 🙂

 

Jarret was one year old when Trey first came up with Amik OUtposts.  His first walleye of his life…… 23.5 inches!  Not a bad start eh?

 

These guys have been on here many times.  The Lindberg party has fished every one of our lakes and are now going through them again!  Cobham Morley seems to be their home for the next couple of years at least.  They caught lots of fish and some pretty nice ones as well.  

On the last night, they had some issues.  After using the same motor all week, the prop, nut and washer fell off.  We are not sure if another guest had taken it off and lost the cotter pin or if it just broke.  They had the wind against them so they were going to wait until the wind went down to paddle home.  

There was 3 of them in the 16 foot boat so they made some extra paddles to get them home, but luckily they communicated with their buddies where they were going and what time they were to return.  After being overdue, their buddies went and found them and towed them in.  They took the paddles home along with a good story.

 

 

Suntans and Smiles :)

 

We have been busy and life is good.  Our fishermen are catching lots of fish and everyone has been coming back from the bush with some great tans on their face and hands, some with racoon eyes and some like me without.  Fishing has been very good, lots of fish and quite a few big ones.  Not too many 27″ plus walleye yet but quite a few in the 24-26″  range.  The pike are still active with 40″ plus fish being caught and released at most camps.  I think the walleyes may finally start to settle down on some depths but until now they have been in various depths from 2 feet to 15 feet.  I saw the Cherrington guys yesterday and they had them thick in 7 feet. Which is where they would normally be at this time of year.

It has been hot, cold and everything in between lately.  We have had some rain as well which was much needed as we had a few fires burning that were getting out of hand.  They are out now and the bush is turning greener by the day which slows the fire risk down now. 

The fires so far have all been set by kids on northern communities or by logging crews. In the pic you can see a Water Bomber picking up water on the lake.

We have had some pictures coming in from some of our guests who were up recently to back up the big fish stories I have been telling 🙂

The Patenaude Party returned to Jeanette Lake.  They caught lots of fish as they have every second year for many years.  They gradually got bigger each day as the water warmed up.

The Caribou live around the cabin at Jeanette most of each summer. They may calve there or just feel safe near the rapids, being able to observe them is pretty cool.

 

The Grindstaff party made the trip from North Carolina for their second time to Loree Lake.  They have fallen in love and are already booked for next year.  Once the solitude of the bush and good fishing get ahold of you, you are hooked 🙂

The Szablewski party fished Shearstone Lake and did great for their first time.  They caught lots of fish and loved the new boats.  Walleye fishing was great and they caught a number of big pike.  Here are a few pictures from their trip.

 

The Berg Party were back at their favorite lake. Cherrington.  Fishing was great with the usual amount of big fish,  Lots of them.  This year they went after some lake trout and caught a few.  Jeff was very impressed at the big fight that they put up.  Here are some pics from their trip.

 

 

 

The season is well underway!

We have been going hard, getting ready for the season.  The camps are all open and people are enjoying the bush.  The weather has been dry and sunny most days with temps on the 60’s and 70’s almost every day, but the nights are very cold.  We have had frost right up until the last few nights.  The mornings are very cool so our fishermen and the fish do not get moving until later in the morning each day.

The fishing so far has been good, great at times, but generally good.  The water temperature is still quite cold and the afternoon fishing is much better than the morning.  The fishing at dusk has been phenomenal!  That is when the water is the warmest.  The best fishing reports have come from the guests who would go back out fishing after supper for the evening bite.

George almost had the biggest pike during his stay at Loree Lake. His son Mike beat him by 1/4 inch. 🙂

During the first week the temperature warmed up at the end of the week and so did the fishing!  There were a number of BIG fish caught and released in the first couple of weeks with a 46 inch pike being the largest so far from the Cobham River and multiple 42 inch pike caught on Loree lake, Jeanette lake, and Cobham Daniel.  Rick M. who was at Daniels had the best hour and a half of his 30 years of fishing Canada.  He had a 39.5,  40, 41 and a fat 42 inch pike in one spot!

Walleyes have been numerous but the big ones have not really hit their stride yet with the cold water temps.  Although there has been more and more large walleye caught each time I pick up happy fishermen.  The largest so far has come from Loree lake at 29 inches.  All of the other camps have been catching a few walleye in the 22-26 inch range but not quite as many as usual.  Lets hope it warms up at night soon……

Here are more pictures from the Seal party who countdown the days until their next visit!!

Skip H. has a new personal best! A 29 inch Walleye!

 

Mike took home the crown for the biggest Pike.  There has been many comments already on how thick and healthy the fish are!

 

We have had a bit of a delay in the mornings so far this year due to frost but the weather otherwise has been great for flying. 

 

Cobham Morley recently had a makeover!  A new floor and a new kitchen.  It turned out great!  Except one countertop was too short.  The new one is on order but at least it was big enough to put the old sink back in 🙂 The new one will have a double sink.

All 3 Cobham camps also received a new 16 foot boat.  The larger boat is great for odd numbered groups like 3, 5, and 7.  More room and a more stable boat.  Much needed when there are triple headers being caught!

 

Shearstone lake also had some upgrades this spring.  There are 3 new 14 foot Lund boats to accompany the new motors we put in there last season.  We also installed a new larger hot water tank, paired with a new shower and vanity in the shower house.

 

We are always doing our best to make your experience the best it can be with good running equipment and comfortable cabins.  We added a new futon mattress at Jeanette, an entire new futon at Blackbirch, a new BBQ at Findlay as well as new stoves at Jeanette, Vee and Blackbirch.

We have filled most of our openings and holes for the season but have some availability here and there.  If you are still interested in coming fishing later this summer please let us know.  We may have a spot for you.  

It’s time to GIVER.

 

 

We have been waiting for this time to come!  The ice is going and we are opening camps.  We will have just enough time.   Like always…… 🙂

We have been fairly cool at night so the ice has taken its time leaving.  Plenty of lakes are still iced over too much to get in but almost all of our lakes are open or will be shortly.  The ice has gone out up north before the lakes east of us.  A fairly common occurrence and ice out being May 9-10 is pretty normal.  Fishing should be awesome!!!

This was BlackBirch this morning on our way to Cherrington to drop of motors etc.  The ice will be gone from there in another day or so.    We will be busy for the next 2 weeks getting camps ready for the season.  Rena and Taina will be at the base getting the next load ready and the boys will be up north getting it done.  

From what I have seen so far, the water levels are perfect on the camps to the west and a bit lower over by Findlay and Loree.  I couldn’t get into Shearstone, Jeanette but DarkWater was perfect also, just up to the dock.

And I saw a few mosquitos today!!!! 

If you are still looking for a fishing vacation for this summer, please send us an email or call us.  Our schedule is ever changing and we can do our best to accommodate you.  Click here to inquire about a LAST MINUTE FISHING TRIP.

 

 

 

 

A few more dates :)

We have been booking people steadily lately and have filled all of the holes we had on our last blog.  Here are a few more dates that we have available for this season due to cancellations and health issues of some of our guests.

Cobham Daniel May 26-31, 2019

Cobham River June 1-5, 2019

Shearstone Lake June 26- July 1, 2019

BlackBirch Lake June 29- July 6, 2019

Vee Lake July 10-16, 2019

Jeanette Lake June 25-30, 2019

Please let us know if you would like to book any one of these trips.  We are looking forward to seeing everyone this summer.

 

 

Getting ready to roll!!

Spring is here and the snow is melting.  It has been a normally long winter and the longer days and warmer temps feel great.  The snow is melting fairly slowly which is good to keep water levels at a good level and the fire risk low .

Our commercial fishing season on Lake Manitoba is over.  5 months of working out on the slab of ice is enough.  It was a good season with consistent catching throughout the winter.  We fed many, many people this winter.  We enjoy what we do out there working amongst Nature, most of the time.  Here is Dustee on the last day looking sad because she knows that we won’t be back until next fall.  The Bombardier is right full of fish!

 

We are busy getting ready for the season, preparing and ordering supplies we need to keep the camps up to snuff so all of our guests can enjoy their trip problem free.

As we approach spring our schedule is always changing with groups adding extra people and others having to cancel or re-schedule.  We have had some Prime Dates open up recently and would love to fill them.  Here are some available dates we have open at this time:

Cobham Daniel May 26-31, 2019 (5 day)

Cobham River June 1-5, 2019 (4 day)

Shearstone Lake June 26- July 1, 2019 (5 day)

Findlay Lake July 5-11, 2019 (6 day)

Dark Water Lake June 29- July 4, 2019 (6 day)

Please let us know if you have any questions or if you would like dates other than we have listed here.  Our phone number is 807-735-9968 or you can simply click here to inquire about about dates for a great fishing vacation.

 

 

The New Brochure

A project we have been working on for awhile now is complete!  We have made a new brochure for this season and will have a PDF version of it on our website soon for our guests to download.  Here is the front page.

 

This year we will be attending the Northwest Sportshow at the Minneapolis Convention Center on March 21-24.

In the past 8 years we have not been attending any of the Sportshows.  Our faithful guests, good word of mouth and our website have kept our numbers great over this period of time.  We can always use more and new guests but this is more of a working vacation.  A time to get away from home, see what is happening in the industry, visit some of our guests and competitors, and have the opportunity to talk fishing with some new people.  It will be good to be back.

If you would like to get your hands on the new brochure come down to the show, Booth 1111.  We are looking forward to seeing everyone.

Looking at the long term forecast it looks like it is going to start warming up.  We have lots of snow and when it melts it will take the ice out pretty quick.  Hopefully we have a nice slow warm up. I can feel the longer days giving me more energy already 🙂

Spring is coming…..

The days are getting longer and there is some heat in the sun.  The outside temperature though has been below normal.  Minus 25-30 Celsius every night and minus 15-20 for highs.  You get used to winter when it settles in like this.  Most days are pretty nice.  If you are dressed for it. 🙂  Spring is coming, I know it is.  It just depends when it decides to show up.  We are due for a warm up.  It has been cold since well before Christmas.

With the longer days comes preparation for the next season.  We have been busy getting questions answered, booking people for next season as well as fishing, trapping and playing some hockey.  Here are some pictures to help you remember what we are waiting for is worth it.

 

 

 

Are you thinking about summer?

We are in the dead of winter.  The days are getting longer but it is pretty normal for the end of January.  COLD!  We are in a deep freeze and it is supposed to continue for another week at least.  _30 to -40C at night and -20C or colder each day.  If the wind is not blowing and the sun is shining it is actually a nice day.  Although today is -25, snowing and blowing.  That is why I am indoors writing a blog today…..

Hopefully you have been thinking about summer.  Our 2019 season is looking like it will be a busy one.  We still have some dates left here and there throughout next season.  If you haven’t booked your trip yet please do not delay.  Click here to inquire about dates for next season.

The Otter has been in the hangar and is almost done with the winter maintenance.  She will be ready to go for another season.  I have been there giving it a good cleaning and keeping up to date on the progress they are making.  

 

 

It was a late start to get out trapping this year. Around Xmas we finally got enough snow and I am just starting to catch. Here is a Pine Marten from one of my ground boxes.

This is the first season in 20 years that I haven’t coached hockey. So now I work the clock at the Junior B games with my buddy Floyd. Can’t stay away from the rink completely, it has been in my blood for too long and Floyd and I spent lots of time in the penalty box so it feels like home. 🙂

Of course anytime I am out on the lake, Dustee has to be right there with me. She is doing good and enjoying her runs out on the lake. And all the fish she can eat.

 

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