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John Kelley

Pretty slow weekend on Lake Michigan, but we managed a few good ones.

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I picked up my cousin Greg and our old buddy Dano, from just north of the Twin Cities, and we made the remaining 5 hour trip to Kewaunee, WI together, to fish a new port town for all of us.  I usually fish out of the port of Sheboygan, and kind of know my way around the water there, but they were hosting the PGA there last weekend, and the room rates were ridiculous, so we tried a port 30 miles north of there.  Greg and Dano had never boated Kings any bigger than 12 pounds on a couple of charter trips they had both been on, and are both primarily walleye hunters from way back.  Neither one had ever used copper line, meat rigs or wire diver rods.  I had fun just showing them how everything went together and how we fish with all of that gear.  We arrived last Thursday afternoon, got our room, got the boys all licensed up, bought some herring, and hit the water.  Trolled around for about 5 hours the first night, but didn't see much at all.  I had us rigged up with 2 dipsies with spin doctors and flies, 2 downriggers pulling meat and paddles, 2 riggers pulling spoons, and 3 coppers pulling 2 j-plugs and 1 meat rig.  I put the 200 and 300 coppers with J-plugs on the boards, and ran the 400 copper with meat and a paddle, right down the chute.  We had one lake trout hit on the port side diver near dusk, that Dano missed, and I reeled in a baby, releaser king that evening, and that was the only action we would see the first night.  Friday morning we were up at 2:30 a.m., because the locals claim there is a really good super early bite, but we didn't find that to be the case.  We got on the water at 3:30 a.m. with a bunch of locals, played combat fishing until 5:30 a.m. when I decided to check the port side meat rig.  I popped it off the rigger and instantly felt a king grab it.  I set the hook hard and gave the rod to my cousin to reel in.  That was a nice 13 pound king, and his new PB king.  A couple of hours later one of my in-line boards with a 3 color leadcore rod and Orange moonshine spoon fired hard, and Dano landed a beautiful 12 pound, 32" long steelhead.  Neither guy had ever seen a bow that big before, so that was cool.  We wen tin for a couple of hors around 2:00 p.m., knifed our fish, re-iced the coolers in the sweltering heat, and headed back out around 4:00 p.m.  Pretty much washed a bunch of different lures the rest of Friday afternoon and evening until  right after the sun sank below the horizon.  Then my starboard diver rod, with the old trusty white with green dots spin doctor and fly fired hard.  Greg eventually landed a nice 36", 18 pound hen king, and increrased his new PB king.  Then we had a crazy hit on the starboard planer board rod, which broke the line right past the knot on the backing.  we chased that board down, and recovered the 3 color leadcore and the spoon, but the fish had escaped by then.  We called it quits about an hour after dark, zig zagging our way back between boats.  The next morning we decided to sleep in until 4:00, since nothing happened until first light the previous morning.  The parking lot at the ramp was almost full of trailers by the time arrived at the dock at 4:30 a.m.  We had to play bumper boats that morning, until around 7:00 a.m., when the boats all thinned out.  Then we moved offshore and put out a steelhead program, and caught 3 nice steelies, and one lake trout and missed a big lake trout on the 450 copper and carbon 14 spoon 10 feet behind the boat, and a huge, leaping steelhead off the port planer board.  We caught a skippy, 2 pound king right at sunset, which we threw back in, and that was it for the weekend.  We ended up keeping 7 fish, but most boats were lucky to catch a fish, it sounded like, so we were happy.  Especially for our first time at this port.  Here are some pics from our trip

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Edited by John Kelley

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