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Pete Collin

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Everything posted by Pete Collin

  1. Les, was that an American eel that you caught? I once tasted eel that a chum got ice fishing. They actually are delicious, and eel sushi is proof. A finger lakes guide once cooked lamprey and said it tasted surprisingly good.
  2. Have I ever seen anything special while fishing? Gotta choose only one or two stories.... Some of them I have already written about on this forum. There was the time I was flyfishing Sandy Creek. Some days you drive from bridge to bridge and find all of the good spots too crowded to join in. It looked too mobbed to bother getting out of the car. But a thunderstorm was looming, the purple/black clouds and advancing thunder claps sounded pretty ominous. The whole batch of fishermen skedaddled once the maelstrom hit, soaking rain coming in sideways. In just a few minutes of slammed car doors and starting engines, I was the only guy parked by the bridge. I could see wakes and splashes in the run upstream. It was obvious there was a ton of migrating fish before me. So I ignored the lightning that seemed way too close for comfort, and waded into casting range. It's a phenomenon that an approaching storm front will send fish into a frenzy, seen it a hundred times. Can't imagine why those brown trout weren't terrified by the constant bright flashes and thunder that must have rumbled the stones beneath them. Instead, they bit on any fly I could drift into their roiling mass. It was amazing. I caught and caught and caught spawning browns, some of them pretty big. The storm was so intense that there must have been some actual danger standing up to my knees in water waving a stick in the air. But I thought the reward was worth it, I could die with a smile on my face! I thought about that scene from Fantasia where The Sorcerer's Apprentice was standing on a craggy mountain top, directing lightning bolts at his will. I felt that way except each jolt came from a fish. That scene played out right up to sundown. I was actually sad when it faded to darkness, that the most intense session of stream fishing had come to a close. At sunrise the next morning, everything changed. The storm brought in a cold front that shut the fish down, they couldn't be budged. But what a time, having mother nature herself sweep a loaded stream clean of human competition, and usher in a cosmic bite just for me.
  3. Hello. I am on the market for a 7 foot medium action spinning rod. Preferably one with an IM6 blank, a cork handle and many guides. I'll even take a blank if you have one.
  4. I'm on the market for replacement rigger weights. I will even buy some releases if you have them.
  5. Cool article. It has been years since I caught a fish and did not know what it was.
  6. Looked it up. You may be right. Didn't know the great lakes had them.
  7. We were anchored off the mouth of Oak Orchard yesterday evening. Slow bite but we managed a couple nice male browns. The weird thing is that we kept seeing what we thought were breaching trout and salmon, but after snagging several, discovered that they were these big 2+ pound herring! Could these possibly be alewives? They had sawlike bellies the way alewives do. No adipose fin, so they weren't whitefish like I initially thought. I know seagoing alewives can get pretty big, but these things were mutants! The first one we brought in was snagged in the tail. It looked oval as Steve cranked it in, so he thought at first he snagged a turtle. We started calling them turtle fish. There must have been a jillion down there, becasue we could feel our spoons scraping their sides from time to time. At first they were sort of interesting, then got a bit annoying because the browns wouldn't bite, finally we relocated to try to get away from them. The turtle fish gave us something to talk about until we finally hooked some browns!
  8. I'm curious how the drift speed of a jet ski would compare to that of a boat, especially with a sock behind you. On the one hand, there is less crafft above the surface to catch with wind, but way less inertia for the wind to overcome. I used to use a handheld gps to mark my hotspots, on the new boat it's all up on the chart screen. Once you locate a hotspot, it is good to quickly motor back upwind once you pass out of them. The lakers tend to follow a contour. Looking back, I bet my most successful days were ones where luck had the wind blowing me right down the pipes of where they were lying. When the wind is blowing at a right angle to shore, you often drift out of a school within a matter of minutes. So you spend a lot of the day picking up and moving.
  9. I have brought myself in during 4 foot waves in my 16 foot Smokercraft twice. Don't want to be over-dramatic. But I remember thinking that I went out to have fun, not to find myself in a fight for my life. That makes me very prudent in choosing when to go out and when to come back in.
  10. Well this is the fanciest tackle box I will ever own.
  11. 2 oz jigginig spoons work, I like to go up to 1 1/2 oz leadhead jigs to get down quickly and counter wind and currents. Any plastic body works. I have a few other jigging videos on my youtube channel that are more instructive than this video.
  12. I see blips up high all the time (that must be salmon or browns or steelhead), even jumpers at the surface, but they rarely show interest in a jig for some reason.
  13. I had a really great day on LO. They were just in a mood to bite, and I was there to partake. Great boating conditions. I even caught a chinook salmon (only the second time I ever jigged one!) It was about 10 pounds, but got no pictures of it. Here's what footage I did manage to get with my cheap cameras.
  14. I'm pretty far along with my chestnut tackle box. I want to put brass corners on it, and have to mount the hinges and latches. A few coats of varnish will make that nice grain pop!
  15. Hello All, Since I took up boat fishing, I always sought to do more with less. I had a small boat, cheap equipment, and gear I had made or modified. I did OK with it. Part of the fun was finding creative ways to get to the fish. It's natural to eventually want to add to what you've got. As my small boat began to show its age, I wanted something bigger, safer, and better fitted for modern fishing. I searched for a while before getting my 17 foot Lund last fall. It came with electric downrigggers, two GPS sonar graphs, CB radio, Yamaha kicker, and best of all, a spot-lock bow mount motor. In the past, I experimented with anchoring in deep water. When you vertically jig for lake trout, you'll often drift over a big group of fish that you'd love to park on top of. With drift bags out, moving with the wind, all you can do is hope they bite in the time it takes to pass overhead. Staying in place is an attractive notion. I've tried using the foot pedal of my bow mount to stay in position, but it was too much like rubbing my stomach and patting my head. And on Lake Onatrio, there are no landmarks to navigate yourself into a swimming pool sized waypoint. Aside from tossing out a bouy to go by, the only other option seemed to be splicing together a 300 foot section of anchor rope so you could really work over a good area. I tried that only once. Ever hand-haul 300 foot of anchor rope, heaving for the length of a football field against mud, zebra mussels, water resistance, and gravity? A capstan would be a practical assist for that grueling task, but the cost of one is roughly the same as buying a spot lock motor. And an electric motor that can use GPS to robotically hold you in a tight position, with the click of a button, is awesome! I wanted to get an early start yesterday because it was sure to be busy at the launch. The guys in front of me helped me launch, and explained that they couldn't get their engine started, so had to pull out as soon as I got underway. I thought, "poor guys", as I thanked them and waved goodbye while putting toward the creek mouth. Early morning, flat waves, tons of recent, encouraging fishing reports. What a time to be dead in the water. This is when I noticed my fuel gauge pegged at empty. "How could this be?" I thought. I could swear I had about a half tank after my last trip. The new boat uses way less gas than my old 2-cycle. Flipping switches on my panel, I figured that either I was in fact out of gas and was damned lucky to have made it all the way in on my last trip out, or the gauge was broken, or the tank had somehow sprung a leak. If the gauge was broken, I either had enough gas for the day, or didn't but there was no way to tell. I tried rigging a dipstick to put down the gas port with what I had on hand, but it didn't work. Even with all the other boats out there, I still didn't want to get myself stranded, and have stories about this idiot who wasn't smart enough to buy gas to show up on this forum. The only way to save the day was to trailer up, fill the tank with enough gas for the day, and head back out again. I lost about an hour of fishing time. And it turns out my gauge is broken, the tank top-off didn't budge the needle. On my second launch, I met another group of guys that had to come back in because of mechanical problems. Isn't boating fun? Well I learned exactly what a help my space-age equipment can do for jigging lakers. If you park your boat right above any blip you see, teasing them with a fluke in their face until they make up their mind is just the presentation the situation calls for. I also came to appreciate how strong the lake currents can get on a seemingly flat day. When stationary, my jig wanted to belly out behind me fairly quickly unless I used a rather heavy one. One could imagine lakers on the bottom finning themselves in place, holding themselves steady in a choice lie the way a stream trout would. Spot Lock let me stay right with them, tease them, change lures, try every trick on each fish until they bit. It was a revelation. You spend so much more time with a line in the water, rather than pulling in the drift bags and motoring back upwind. I was having a lot of fun, was ready to set up a camera to make a video, until the batteries of the Minn Kota ran out. I guess they don't hold their charge when sitting idle for 3 months! Oops! Still, I was really happy and look forward to a fish-catching summer! Stats: Landed 6, missed 2. Doesn't sound earth-shattering, but I lost prime fishing time and they were still biting when I left. 3 were bigger than 30 inches.
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