|Here are a few questions that really have me stumped. Why arenít the big countries like the United States, Canada and China for example more concerned about the Global Warming crisis? Why arenít those same countries doing more to halt this disaster and even more puzzling is why arenít they taking action to reverse the damage being done by Global Warming?|
Actually the questions have got me stumped. The answers are fairly simple. For starters letís not damage the economy, even though the future of this planet of ours looks pretty damn dismal. And letís never forget that bucks count before brains.
I always liked Al Gore. Not that I disliked George Dubya, even though I thought something smelled worse than a big pile of decaying catfish when the final votes were tallied in Florida at the end of the last election. For the last half decade Gore has been travelling around the world raising the concerns of the
Global Warming catastrophe. No matter what anyone tells you heís talking facts and not fiction. The movie which he helped comprise and narrates, An Inconvenient Truth, is the truth and not fiction. Itís a documentary that scared the bejeezus out of me and most other viewers that had even a sampling of common sense. In fact, Gore and his crew recently were awarded a Noble Prize for their efforts. Now, if some of the best scientists in the world are passing out the praises to this guy and his efforts to divert disaster, what the hell is wrong with the leaders of our biggest countries? The answer... money.
Prediction. Itís not just the polar cap that is going to disappear unless we do something about Global Warming and do it quickly. The fishery as we know it is in big trouble. Our oceans and the Great Lakes are already showing the effects of the heat wave. Fish species are going to be pushed farther north or disappear completely.
Something has to be done by the big countries and be done immediately.
|This newsletter is being put together only hours before the lights go out on 2007. Hereís hoping that everyone reading this message catches even more fish this coming year than they did in the past. Hereís hoping the tackle and marine industries prosper in the future like never before. Hereís hoping the powers to be at both provincial and federal levels of governments show a whole lot more concern for our sportfishery and the fish we utilize than they have in the past.|
|A few months back I mentioned the hard work being carried out by the Lake Huron Fishing Club and the Ontario Steelheaders, especially the Brantford chapter, in their attempts at transforming the Saugeen River into one of the countryís top steelhead fisheries. Well, this joint venture program is less than two years old and the efforts of the two clubs is already paying dividends. Hereís a quick overview of what the clubs have accomplished and what the rewards to date are on one of Ontarioís largest coldwater streams. Back in the spring of 2006, the Steelheaders with the assistance of the Lake Huron Fishing Club collected more than 200,000 steelhead eggs from adult rainbow trout moving up the Saugeen River. Once fertilized, half the eggs moved to the Lake Huron Fishing Clubís Kincardine hatchery and the other half were relocated to the Steelheaders streamside facility upstream on the Saugeen. The fry hatched at the smaller Saugeen facility were distributed throughout the systemís headwaters, while the Kincardine fish were held over for twelve months and then stocked far upstream on the Saugeen for maximum imprinting. The 75,000 yearling steelhead smolt were of exceptional size and exceptional survival was expected from the planting.|
The startling fact is just how fantastic the survival has been and just how quickly some of these fish have entered the sportfishery. After only six to eight months of feeding in the open water of Lake Huron some of these fish from the initial stocking last spring returned to test the skills of steelheaders fishing the Saugeen this past November and December.
As this newsletter goes into the computer approximately 70,000 more steelhead are being ready for release again this spring. According to Kincardine hatchery manager Al Wilkins the 2008 fish will be even bigger in size and healthier than last yearís stock.
A tip of the hat to the Lake Huron Fishing Club and the Ontario Steelheaders for the efforts aimed at making the Saugeen River the finest steelhead stream east of the Rocky Mountains. I can only hope that the tackle industry and recreational anglers get totally behind this phenomenal Community Fisheries Involvement Program. Even more I would hope that the Ontario government would get involved in this initiative and by that I mean stocking government rainbow smolt into the Saugeen System as well.
The Saugeen is about to generate a multi-million dollar boost to the economy through tourism and tackle sales. It amazes me that the politicians have failed to note the value of this program.
|In this business I get a lot of emails most days. Some are passing out a lot of compliments at times. Some arrive asking for information. Others will point out hot spots that I should be visiting. Heck some even come complaining about one thing or another. Those are few and far between though. Then there are |
times when an email will bring a smile to my face to matter what is going on around me in the office. This picture is of Alsa Reeve and the hat being worn must be an oldie. I sold Going Fishing Magazine more than 15 years ago.
In the future may the fish always bite your baits Alsa.
|Outfitter & Lodge Spotlight|
|Bayview Lodge, Minaki, Ontario|
Before hitting the road last year to fish and film, I spent plenty of time studying up the locations I intended to visit. Bryan and Kathleen Rheaultís.
Bayview Lodge (www.mnaki-bayviewlodge.com or 1-800-844-7907) is without a doubt one of Canadaís true fish factories. Walleye, bass, pike and musky are anywhere and everywhere you want to drop a jig, cast a spoon or troll a crankbait. They donít talk just limits of fish here. They talk of catching walleye by the hundreds. If itís musky fishing you crave, Bryan Rheault is the man to take you to the monsters. By monsters, Iím referring to lunge that have long past the 50 inch mark.
The Winnipeg Lakes and river system is chocked full of structure in the form of islands, points and shoals. No matter which way the wind blows youíll find calm water and that same structure makes for great fish attractors.
Minaki is a remote wilderness region, that offers some of the finest scenery in the country. The Winnipeg River and its numerous lakes in the chain are where the giants live. At Baview Lodge itís not just the phenomenal sport fishing, but the solitude, pristine waters, great accommodations and scrumptious meals.
Bayview Lodge offers the finest Canadian fishing experience found anywhere in our north country.
Now, hereís something very important to remember. During our three day stopover at Baview Lodge we had an abnormal number of cold fronts enter the region. In fact, it rained torrents and roared thunder and flashed lightning throughout our stay. On any other water system I have visited in the past, the fish would have headed for cover and the fishing and filming would have been a total bust. Not at Minaki and not at Bayview Lodge. Even with the storms the walleye and musky continued to bite down on the baits as fast as we could get them over the side..
Bayview and Minaki, Ontario is approximately a seven hour drive northwest of Thunder Bay, Ontario and only a few hours drive east of Winnipeg, Manitoba.
Baview Lodge, Minaki, Ontario, you just have to love it!
|Where do you go for a lot of peace and solitude, great walleye fishing and also to hide from a fast approaching tornado? Very simple, if you are in the vicinity of Ignace, Ontario, head for Rousseauís Landing (www.flayerslodge.ca) and in our situation last July we did that in a heartbeat. |
As I noted, the trip to northwestern Ontario last summer was an adventure in more ways than one. Mother Nature, and it could relate to our many changing weather patterns, seemed to be really out to get us. No matter where we travelled the storm clouds, boomers and lightning always seemed to be right with us.
But at Ignace, Ontario we got extremely lucky.
Now I never pass through Ignace with out stopping at Vernís Minnows (1-807-934-6388) just as you drive in to town. You canít miss the place and shouldnít miss the place. Big oversized ĎVernís Minnowí sign, great tackle selection, great live bait selection and great staff. On this trip we were telling them about our problems with the weather. The owner John Roussseau, (donít ask me why he calls the place Vernís) suggested that we stay at Rousseauís Landing (now that one I understand) a few miles up the road instead of the local motel. Something about, great food, great accommodations and great fishing.
Well, we took Johnís advice and motored over and checked in to Rousseauís Landing. It just happened that on that particular night a tornado swept through Ignace. The motel we were suppose to stay in was lifted off the ground and deposited in the surrounding bush. All the time I was sleeping soundly 5 miles away. On waking up the question came, where do we fish. The Otter that was supposed to carry us into the wilderness was damaged and that trip was scrubbed.
Again, John Rousseau came to the rescueÖ.letís hit the logging trails for a little local fishing adventure.
Well, in two days we filmed two great shows, experienced hundreds of hook-ups with chunky walleye and northern pike and had the time of our lives. Now, remember for two solid weeks it had been wind, rain, lightning and thunder. On top of that was the tornado. I donít think anywhere in the country the fish would have accommodated us like what we found in the forests that surround Rousseaís Landing.
If you get the opportunity, donít pass up the opportunity to make this the place to stay and fish in northwestern Ontario. The folks are great, the lodge is great and the fishing is greatÖ.no matter what the weather does.
|Barry Nash Lake Erie Guide Extraordinaire|
|If you reside in southern Ontario and are looking for a great fishing adventure then look no farther than the north shore of Lake Erie. When it comes to booking a guide to take you fishing on the big lake for limits of big bellied walleye and high flying rainbow trout then look no further than my good buddy Barry Nash. Nash fishes out of the little hamlet of Port Bruce, located approximately 45 minutes driving time from downtown London, Ontario. Nash has partnered up with George Clemens to form Blue Goose Fishing Adventures (http://users.gtn.net/bnash) (519-461-1751) to provide close to shore open water trolling that is some of the best you will find anywhere on the Great Lakes. |
For those that donít know, Lake Erie has been reborn. The fish are back, that is if they ever really went away. Walleye and perch the backbone of the lakeís sport fishery have seen their populations rebound to astronomical numbers. The new finned kid on the block is the steelhead. Thanks to a fantastic stocking program carried out by the American states of Ohio and New York, pugnacious rainbow trout are everywhere you drop a bait in the waters out from Port Bruce.
Nash and Clemens operate two big boats and can accommodate both large and small fishing parties. The boats are equipped with Walker Downriggers and the latest high tech fishing gear to find the fish and let you enjoy the angling of a lifetime. On top of all this, Nash has hooked up with a local bed and breakfast operation which is one of the finest on Lake Erie. Fish all day and then get back to the pool, a cold drink and a great meal to recuperate for the next day on the water.
Remember, this for most is close to home fishing and some of the finest you will find anywhere on the north shore of Lake Erie.
|Whatís New in Fishing Tackle|
|Darryl Cronzyís Canadian Fishermanís Breading and Batter Mix|
What more can I say, when the name seems to say it all. Itís Darryl Cronzyís Canadian Fishermanís Breading and Batter Mix (www.campfireproducts.ca). Well for starters, itís been 50 years in the making. Itís a breading and batter mix, that has egg and milk already include in the zip-loc bag. Itís great on anything that swims. Itís also fantastic on chicken, pork and beef as well. Then thereís fact that it also can be used at the campfire, the barbecue or in the kitchen.
The secret in the proper cooking of fish is to get the temperature just right and donít over-cook the fish. As a coating mix, itís a simple task of just rolling moist fillets of your favorite fish in this great mixture, getting the oil or butter hot to 360 degrees and frying up your feast. When it comes to battering up your fish, first roll the moist fish in the dry mixture and then dip the fish again in a batter made up of Cronzy Beading and Batter with water, beer, milk or even ginger ale. Shake off the excess batter and carefully lower the batter fish into hot 360 degree oil.
Trust me the results are delicious.
In all honesty, I believed this new product would be accepted quickly by the sport fishing fraternity, but just how quickly surprised even me. Canadian Tire is now distributing Darryl Cronzyís Breading and Batter Mix coast to coast. On top of that, a number of Canadaís major tackle wholesalers are making certain it is in as many tackle shops across Canada as well. If you donít find it in your local tackle shop simple request that he contact his wholesaler. If you walk in to Canadian Tire and you canít find it on the shelf tell that categoryís manager all he has to do is make a phone call to head office. For a tackle shop selling it near you simply type in www.campfireproducts.ca and check the where to purchase section.
Looking for the best way to present your catch at the table after you bring it home? Try Darryl Cronzyís Canadian Fishermanís Breading and Batter Mix.
If you read the Outfitter and Lodge rundown previous you know that the crew and myself had some really rough weather conditions confronting us this past summer in Northwestern Ontario. On one of the shoots I was sharing the stage with a good friend and great fisherman Dan Gapen. Now Gapen has been around and knows all the tricks believe me. When the fronts moved in, which they did continuously the old pro dropped his bait presentations from natural to mini in size.
With minnows he only used half a bait and with worms, heíd top his jigs with only a fingernail size nightcrawler, not even half of worm. The old pro was kicking my butt for a long time before I came up with a solution for my woes. It was a brand new product from Berkley, that the folks in Portage la Prairie had sent me out to try called Berkley Gulp Alive.
Now, Berkley Gulp as most anglers already know is a best selling artificial bait. Thereís something about Gulp that just canít keep the fish away. Well, the boys in the Berkley lab have really outdone themselves this time. Berkley Gulp Alive is 20 percent more powerful than the original Gulp. The baits come in 3 and 4 inch Gulp Alive Minnows, 2 and 3 inch Berkley Gulp Alive Minnow Grubs and 3 inch Berkley Gulp Alive Leeches. Available in a multitude of colours the secret to the success of these artificials is the fact that they are kept Ďaliveí in special jars that are packed with Gulp Alive Juice. You can use these baits over and over again. When youíre finished with a bait simply drop it back into the jar and the Gulp Alive Juice to give it a little rejuvenating.
The Berkley Gulp Alive baits can be used on just about every freshwater and saltwater species in the swim. Iím betting when the new tackle introductions come on the scene this spring, Berkley Gulp Alive will have an expansion that is about to take the industry by storm.
Believe me, this is the hottest bait to be introduced since CrŤme came out with that first original plastic worm more than fifty years ago.
|Abu Garcia Cardinal 700LX Series of Spinning Reels|
When I arrive at the American Sportfishing Associations annual get together in Las Vegas every summer my first visit is to the Abu Garcia booth and in particular the section that showcases the latest in spinning reels.
The latest from the folks at Abu Garcia just might be their finest ever. The Abu Garcia Cardinal 700LX Series of spinning reels come in five models starting at the C701LX which can handle 110 yards of 6 pound test monofilament all the way up to the C707LX that can handle a sailfish or the biggest of lunge with a carrying capacity of more than 250 yards of 17 pound mono.
Tough, durable and designed for fresh or saltwater, these reels contain seven ball bearings, are corrosion resistant, with over-sized line rollers. The Cardinal 700 LX series are spinning reels that can take on the load of bait casters. Take a hard look at the aluminum frame, side plate and rotor and you realize that hereís a reel thatís over-built to take on any task itís asked to perform.
|The Abu Garcia REVO Series of Bait Casters|
There are a new series of low profile baitcasters that have started a REVOlution. These all new low profiles are comfortable in the hand and are every bit as smooth as any other reel in their category. Compared to other reels Iíve used, they have more fighting power due to an over-sized drive gear. Constructed to face the elements of both fresh and saltwater they will haul in the biggest of bass and most powerful snook youíre ever likely to meet up with. On top of all that the built-in 24 pound drag system is 2 to 3 times more powerful than any reel in their class.
The only problem is the choice of model Revo you might want to own. Abu Garcia is so proud of this new creation they make available twelve models of Revo. My favorite you might ask? Well, itís the Revo Premier with seven sturdy HPCR (high precision corrosion resistant) bearings, a 6.4:1 gear ratio and a line capacity of 145 yards of 12 pound test monofilament.
This is a beauty of a reel. A reel like no other.
|Berkley Trilene 100% Fluorocarbon Professional Grade Line|
The folks at Berkley have done it again. This time itís in the field of fluorocarbon line. The all new Berkley Trilene 100% Fluorocarbon Professional Grade Line series is the fluorocarbon that both the pros and the amateurs are clambering for. If fact, itís the ultimate fluorocarbon line period. Diameter for diameter it has the strongest impact strength of any fluorocarbon on the market today. Itís also the ultimate in manageability and the ultimate in invisibility.
For you Great Lakes guys and saltwater buffs, Berkley is introducing the Berkley Big Game 100% Fluro 33 Yard Leader Wheels. The big secret in downrigger and deepwater trolling and jigging is now fluorocarbon leaders and this is the finest. The aqua-blue tint of this line eliminates sparkle and flash transmitted from surface light. No matter what you are fishing for thereís a pound test designed for you. You have sixteen choices of line strength anywhere from 10 to 400 pounds.
|Williams Wabler Lite W55|
When it comes to a choice of spoon, I never go north or out on the Great Lakes without a wide assortment of Williams spoons. The proof of just how much Canadian anglers value the fish catching ability of Williams spoons is the fact that this Canadian made bait has been around for more than 80 years.
The new Williams Wabler Lite W55 is another precious metal bait that belongs in every anglerís tackle box. For starters it has the same classic Williams Wabler shape and hypnotic wobble, only this spoon carries half the weight of its famed ancestor. Itís a spoon that is perfect for water and slower swimming presentations.
The new Wabler Lite W55 is available in eight finishes. Thereís the ever famous Ďrealí gold, silver, copper and half and half models, as well as the red, electric blue, rainbow and all new pink.
Donít leave home without it. The all new Williams Wabler Lite W55 is a definite winner.
|Rapala Birch and Salmon Collector Presentation Fillet Knife|
I honestly believe that I have owned more Rapala fillet knives than anyone walking the face of this earth. Iíve owned Rapala knives for almost 50 years. I have a habit of using most of them a while and then passing them along to some well deserving young angler that I might meet along a stream or at a fish cleaning station. Donít get me wrong, Iíve cherished and kept more than a few for my own treasure trove of Rapala knives, but for the most part these knives are inexpensive, well built and just something I like to pass along to young anglers I believe have a passion for the sport.
At last count, Rapala had more than 20 style of knives or knife/combo packages and that included 5 great electric versions.
But the knife that impresses me most at the present time is the Rapala Birch and Salmon Collector Presentation Fillet Knife. Hereís a knife and Heirloom presentation box that will be that special gift for someone who truly enjoys the sport of angling.
The blade on this long knife is manufactured of hard carbon steel. The handle is carved of white grained birch. At the top of the handle rests a sculptured brass salmon head. The sheath that protects the knife is made of finely tooled leather. Then to highlight the value and importance of such a knife, it comes packaged in an heirloom wooden gift box.
Itís one knife that I wonít be giving away, but passing on to my son one day.
|G3 Boats By Yamaha|
If you havenít had a chance to view the new G3 Boats (www.g3boats.com) by Yamaha yet make certain you browse their website or get out to a local dealer. I honestly believe these boats, and there is a very wide variety of models, are the boats of the future.
Of course Iím a little partial to G3. My new Advantage V210 has just arrived and is tucked away in storage and just waiting for the ice to melt. This is the boat that Pro Walleye anglers and Great Lakes trollers have been asking for. Look at the GX2 double plated reinforced hull. Then thereís that Advantage V210 Pro Touch which includes a giant 42 gallon oxygenated live well, 60 gallon dual pickup gas tank, 9 foot center rod locker , shock absorbing gas pedestal seats and an immense 66 x 82 inch vinyl floored cockpit. To top all that off, my new boat is powered by a powerful 250 horsepower 4 stroke and is matched with a dependable 9 horsepower four stroke trolling motor. The command center features Sea Star Power Steering and Yamaha Command link digital gauges.
Believe me itís the finest fishing machine on the water. Check it and other quality fishing boats out at the G3 website.
|Real X Trailers by Everything Marine|
Now Iíve been fishing and pulling boats around the country and throughout the United States. After more than 40 years of towing boats I can tell you some real horror stories. Letís seeÖ probably a dozen flat tires taking place at high speeds on the thruways and express lanes. There was the time the axle blew out as I was making a slow turn in a small town in northern Ontario. Heck, one time I had the entire darn trailer collapse and drop a boat on a country road.
Dropping that boat was the final straw.
Now, there are plenty of good trailer manufacturers here and in the United States, but I went in search of the best trailer manufacturer. At first I was looking for a trailer that could carry more than 3 ton of 28 foot Mako with a couple of 150 four strokes on the back. It was a Florida boat so I thought Iíd go looking for a Florida trailer and believe me I found it.
The name of the trailer is Real X Trailers, manufactured by Everything Marine (www.everythingmarine.com) of Miami, Florida. The perfect big boat trailer includes aluminum I-beam construction , aluminum cross members, aluminum bunk brackets and aluminum diamond plated fenders all put together with stainless steel u-bolts, bolts, washers and nuts. This all sits on galvanized polish-lube torsion axles. A few extras that come as part of the package are hot dip galvanized hubs, wheels, equalizers, tongue and winch stand. Then finish it off with submersible lights, winch and strap, as well as those all important float-on center bunks.
The folks at Everything Marine put it in a very simple way:
- 50% of a boat buyers thought goes toward the boat
- 35% goes toward the purchase of the engine
- Only 15% goes towards the purchase of the trailer
- When In Fact 85% of Your Investment Goes OnThat Trailer
- When purchasing your boat (investment) think of what is going to carry it for you SAFELY TO THE WATER!
With that in mind and with this newsletter coming to an end, Iím leaving tomorrow to trailer an old antique baby Boston Whaler to the Florida Keys. When I get there the old trailer will be replaced with a Real X Trailer by Everything Marine.