Canadian Fly In Fishing
Canadian Fly In Fishing

Feels Great to be back!

Rena and I have been in Red Lake for almost 2 weeks and it feels great to be back!  The ice is still probably a week away from going out at least.  The weather has been perfect since we arrived.  Warm and sunny everyday.  We have been working around the base and doing jobs we normally don’t have time to do while we are operating in addition to the normal spring cleaning.  The base is great shape and the afternoon sun has been perfect on the deck.  Today though…. it is snowing after raining all day yesterday.  Everything will start to turn green next week if it warms up.

There a ton of birds back and since we have some of the only water around, there is a lot of activity in the river.  Geese, ducks, seagulls, loons, sandhill cranes, blue herons and tons of eagles are here as well as all the other land birds.  For a few days each spring the sound of all these birds is constant.  As it warms up they slowly carry on to the north as spring heads that way.

We remain hopeful that things will straighten out in time for us to have a season.  When it will begin is still up in the air.  We have moved a few guests around that were scheduled in May, we are waiting until we know more on when the border will open before making too many changes.  We have no choice right now than to be patient and be as ready as we can when the time comes.  Aaron and I will be heading north to get the camps ready when the ice goes.

There are many theories and opinions to what is happening to us right now and if you are afraid of what you are being told or not.  Just so we are clear on our stance, we are not afraid, we are open for business.  This virus does not scare us despite what the media and government are trying to tell us.  The time to stand up and say we have had enough is here.  We have been working with our network of Tourism Associations and Airline colleagues to pressure the government about opening up the border to tourism.  We are the Premier Social Distancing Vacation. ūüôā Where else would you want to go?   There are still guests booking fishing trips for later in the season in some of our open dates, it is hard not to be optimistic when we have such great and loyal guests.  

Here are some pics I have taken recently.

Spring is the time to get the Tulibee’s smoked.  The smoker is at my Mom’s and we always have a day each spring where we get together, have a fire all day, maintain the smoker, roast hot dogs and possibly have a few drinks. 

Until yesterday this is what we had every day.  Perfect days for yard work.

Jack is back!  He is a year and a half now and spends all of his time following Aaron and I around.  This little bugger is going to be fun to have around.  We were raking leaves and he found a hockey stick in the shed to come and help with.

This is what we woke up to this morning.  Hopefully it is gone by this afternoon.  It is supposed to be sunshine for the next week at least.

 

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 ūüôā

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 ūüôā

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. ūüôā

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 ūüôā 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…… ūüôā

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.

 

 

 

 

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 ūüôā

A history of fishing with us.

The Knip/ Cradduck party has been with us longer than Rena and I have been with Amik.  They started coming to Canada in 1985 to Manotak Lodge who was then venturing into the outpost business to the north.  

In 1990, not long after the big fire, they went to Vee Lake.  From that moment on they were hooked.  Many adventures, mishaps, shorelunches and most importantly many memories were made and many smiles were had in the last 23 trips to God’s Country.

We feel fortunate to have been a part of showing these guys a good time and to be a part of their lives.  Things have changed over the years but the constant remains. GOOD FISHING AND GOOD TIMES.

 

Thank you for putting this together Hank.  We look forward to many more.

 

Knip / Cradduck 1985 to 2017 Photo Gallery

Happy 4th of July!

We have had many families up fishing with us lately and they have been creating many memories and catching lots of nice fish while doing it!

The Hendricks family have been going to Vee Lake for quite a few years now.  They were our 2016 Photo contest winners.  They love their time in the bush and are getting to know Vee Lake very well.  Here are just a few of the big fish they caught this year.

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The Moody and Seger boys fished Shearstone last week.  It is nice to see the boys growing into better fishermen every year.  This year they caught some great fish and had a blast again.  Already looking forward to next year!!

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The Berg party came up for their favorite week of the year at Cherrington Lake.  Fishing was awesome out on the big lake.  Lots of thick healthy walleye out there and they are all normally well over 20 inches.

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They saw some wicked storms and even this waterspout one day

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We have been into a better trend of weather recently with warm temperatures. ¬†The water is still pretty high so let’s hope it stays dry for awhile.

 

It begins again!!

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2017 is underway!!!  We have flown quite a few fishermen into the bush and the silence of a long winter will be broken by the sounds of laughter and reels buzzing.  Our ice out was not as early up north as it was around Red Lake.  The ice left most of our lakes up north around the 7th or 8th of May we think.  We began opening camps on May the 9th and were ice free as we made the rounds to each camp to get it ready for a busy summer.

Water levels on all of our lakes seems to be just perfect.  Not too high but not low either.  Today as I write this we are getting rain in the Red Lake area but not up north.  The seasonal forecast is for a warm dry summer so it is nice to start out the season with plenty of water.  Lets hope for some timely rains to keep the forest fires at bay and the fire ban off.

We have only had one group of fishermen come out so far who were on a 3 day trip to BlackBirch. ¬†Lots of walleyes near the in flows of water but as of yet they haven`t spawned. ¬†Big Pike were coming alive as well. ¬†A 36 inch pike was the biggest with a monster on that could not even be lifted off the bottom. ¬†The water is warming up….

Of course my flying partner Dustee had to come along and protect us while we were opening camps. ¬†At Loree lake, a Marmot hole had her busy for a day and a half. ¬†She dug this crater and then slept beside it all day, that night and never moved from that spot until we left the next day. ¬†She didn’t win this time…

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We had fairly good weather for opening camps this year.  Cloudy for the first few days but just the perfect temperature for working so we were able to put in some long days and get stuff done.

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Of course we didn’t work until dark every night. ¬†Jerrica, a girl I have coached since she was 3 and is now in College playing hockey, helped us open camps this year. ¬†She is a good fisherman and caught way more than enough fish for a fish fry right off the dock at Cherrington!

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One of our dockhands, Josh, is from Newfoundland. ¬†They don’t get much sun there…He was being burnt to a crisp so I had to figure out a way to keep him going when the weather turned hot for a couple days. ¬†It wasn’t pretty but it kept his neck from burning any worse.

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Spending time in the bush is special.  The silence and pristine environment are certainly therapeutic.

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Our summer is pretty full this year but we do have a few holes to fill. ¬†Here are some dates for you to think about if you haven’t booked your summer vacation. Please email amik@frontiernet.net or call us at 807-735-9968 to inquire about one of these dates.

Loree Lake  June 16-20

Cobham River July 27 – August 1

Vee Lake August 7-11

BlackBirch Lake August 17-22

Cobham River August 26-31

Cobham Daniel September 2-7

Jeanette Lake August 11-14

 

Tips for your upcoming trip.

We take great pride in doing our best to show you an excellent fishing vacation. Here are a few tips for your consideration when planning your trip.

GAS is much more expensive in Canada. Remember to fill up your vehicle in International Falls before you cross the Border where it is cheaper. This should be enough to get you to Red Lake and in some vehicles, back to Dyden where the price is somewhat cheaper than Red Lake. If you are coming from the west and travelling through Manitoba, fill up in Prawda, MB where the price of gas is generally 10 cents less per litre than Ontario.

Weight: Flying an Otter, we try and accommodate every group and the gear they require for a great fishing trip, which should be no more than 100 pounds per person. We do have some flexibility regarding weight but if you and your party show up at our base hundreds of pounds over your allowed weight, you will be asked to get rid of a hundred pounds or more of gear, which is harder than you think. Plan ahead, weigh your personal gear before you buy groceries. You should have no more than 60 pounds of personal gear, including your tackle, depth finder, batteries, sleeping bag, clothes and anything that isn’t food. Have and shop from a menu.  You do not need to buy large quantities of anything and it helps to keep your weight down.  This should allow ample room for the food for your trip. We see a lot of people over pack on clothing, remember that when you are in camp, you will most likely wear the same clothes for most of the week. Another tip is to pack a seperate bag for travelling and leave it in your vehicle in Red Lake with your travelling shoes etc. Leaving anything unneccesary behind. We do our best to utilize our aircraft and your party is entitled to 100 pounds per person of that plane. You need to be close to your allowed weight so that the supplies needed can get to the outpost camp and so we can send a cooler of ice with you.

Travel insurance When ever you are travelling outside of your home country, you should have travel insurance. A visit to the doctor for any reason, could add up to big $ if you are not prepared, even in Canada for a simple fish hook removal. If you are injured at the outpost and need a flight out for medical attention immediately, we will arrange for an aircraft to take you out but YOU are responsible for the cost of that special charter. If you have insurance, it may be worth a call to verify that you are covered in Canada.

Ontario Outdoors Card and your fishing licence If you have a green or blue Ontario Outdoors card, even an expired card, make sure to bring it with you when you come to see us. If you have not fished in Ontario in the past or do not have one, we will issue a temporary Ontario Outdoors card here at our base for you. We can renew your card at our base as well and also issue you your fishing licence here in Red Lake.  If you have renewed your Outdoors card online be sure to bring a copy with you when you come.

Groceries and Bait If you need us to help with getting groceries, bait, or beverages for your trip, please remember to get your orders into us at least 2 weeks prior to your fishing trip.

Water  Being that water is very heavy, we are suggesting to our guests to bring a good quality water filter to cut down on flying in bottled water.  These filters are light weight and can be a gravity feed system or a UV light system.  The water in the North is all natural water on deep moving watersheds.  Please look into this and keep it with your Canada gear to use each year.

Lifejackets We supply lifejackets at our outposts for our fishermen. But we suggest that if you are a large person and require a bigger lifejacket, please bring your own. Also, if you have children coming with you, please bring a lifejacket for them as well.

Your phone and Photos.  We love to get photos from our guests of their trip.  We also worry about our guests dropping their phone in the lake or losing it somewhere on your trip.  We would like to remind everyone who makes the trip north to back up their contacts and empty the photos to provide you with plenty of room for the picturesque vacation you will be on.

Times in and out We do our best to get all of our fishermen in and out of the outposts as quickly and efficiently as possible. We are the only outfitter that will give you a time that you are flying in to the camp and a time that we will be at the dock to pick you up. Barring weather, we are on time 90% of the flights. There are a few things to remember that may affect our time schedule. Here they are starting in the morning.

-We operate on a river and there are times where we have localized fog which backs us up for the day.

‚ÄďBad weather When flying on floats, we have to be able to maintain visual contact with the ground. Our aircraft are not equipped for flying into or above the clouds like other commercial jets. Rarely, but sometimes we are a day late getting you into camp and someone has to stay an extra day in the bush. We can only do what Nature allows us to do in regards to flying safely.

‚ÄďProblems at a camp. If there is a problem at the camp with anything, John must take the time to repair it. It affects the rest of the day slightly.

Please remember that we offer personal service for your fishing vacation. We have 24 years of experience in the tourist business with Amik Outposts, almost since the companies inception. Rena is excellent at helping you pre-plan every aspect of your trip, right down to the last detail. Her experience is a great asset and she will do her best to ensure you have all your bases covered. John with 23 years of flying in the bush knows the country in which you will be flying like the back of his hand. Thousands of hours logged, all in the same area, showing people great vacations. Around the camp, he has been maintaining the equipment since day one.

In order to offer you this personal service we schedule our trips throughout the day. We cannot fly everyone at 5am but we do not send you out with a pilot who is new to the area and has no clue as to how to fix anything around the camp.

We are looking forward to seeing you this summer. We hope these tips help. Remember, you are on vacation. Enjoy it.

Getting closer…….

The ice is going at a normal rate for some of Ontario. ¬†A recent snow storm is hitting¬†parts of NW Ontario to the south of us down to the border and east of us as far east as Thunder Bay. ¬†Red Lake is on the northern edge of it and hopefully we don’t get too much snow.

 

Rena and I will be in Red Lake next week and we are excited for another season.  We hope to have the Otter next week and then start to open camps shortly after.  The ice in Red Lake is going out as I write this.  The wind is howling and it is moving around.  Most lakes should open up now.

 

Here is what the ice looked like in Red Lake on Sunday.

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The forecast is for warm weather next week so we are hoping the snow and the ice will be gone when we get there….

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This is what it looked like on Lake of the Woods the next afternoon when I made it to my buddies place.  Good temperature for my suitcase.

On a recent visit to see family, my uncle Sylvio brought out his favorite shirt he got from my Mom and Dad 25 years ago when Amik was first started. ¬†His family has been after him for years to retire it but he still wears it all the time!! ¬†It’s tough to find quality like this now.

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We will begin to have a flight schedule by the end of next week as it takes us a few days to get things fired up and organized at the base in Red Lake.  We are looking forward to seeing everyone again!

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