Aww...what a feeling its been. Guests are back, boats at the docks, fish house is open and getting use, Earl seems to be everywhere at once, and the smiles. We're kind of feeling like Ray did in Field of Dreams. These days are priceless.
Opener Week has been some guests' best week of fishing ever; the winds were really tough most days to put it mildly. Temps were from 50's and 60's with winds in the upper teens. Gotta be prepared for all extremes up here, eh. Fishing was good but holding positions was challenging.
Week 1 leaderboard:
Bruce caught a 36.5" fat pike on opener week!
Another day, another big pike. This pic says it all:
And he endured some super windy days to get good results with the walleye:
Newbies to Tall Pines, this fun family had some good adventures while here:
Joe landed a 34" northern:
Debbie got into some nice smallmouth:
And Amelia was quite the trooper going out everyday:
This week winds have been much calmer; fishing has steadily increased and the bite is outstanding. Fish have been caught in a variety of structure and depth. From 8-10' all the way up to 30'. From the rookies to the Wabby veterans, everyone has been doing great in all of the lakes.
Week 2 leaderboard:
Jim, a seasoned Wabby veteran, caught the biggest walleye of week and season so far at 27”!
He and his wife also got into some nice northern- this one a 34"er:
Mark got a 25" walleye among many others:
He and his wife Cindy endured some hot days to also land a number of good size pike:
Wabby newbies Howie and Breezie are the perfect addition to the Tall Pines Family- they were serious anglers that produced and everyday they had a great story to tell when they returned to camp:
They even had their own tracking whiteboard that totaled 253 fish caught during their first stay at Tall Pines!
These two were just the cutest couple and kept asking everyone all week "Did you catch any perch?" while they were catching walleye, smallmouth, and pike.
They got into quite a few; Sue was rocking the leader board for a while, and hubby Steve couldn't let her keep that, so he was determined and on their last day got a 12 3/4" perch.
One day's catch:
This couple won our hearts as they wore different White Sox shirts and hats every day of their trip! Jim and Mary took advantage of the 10 day opener special so they could really take their time fishing as well as exploring.
Dedicating this blog to Walt for you guys, and looking forward to having you both back next year!
The guys still managed to put together some benches during our "Couple's Week' (above) and (below) we had our longest hot streak- with weather in the upper 80's all week!
Wednesday "social" replaced the traditional potluck:
Yep, we're still getting out fishing, since Earl pretty much runs camp these days. Fishing and being on the water really is the best medicine to keep one's mental health!
24.5" walleye caught to outshine my 19" walleye one day.
There have been a few hiccups such as power going out for 4 hours early the first week, and the initial long border wait times (we found out after the fact that vehicles were lining up starting at 4:00 PM on the 8th, so the line was miles long before they opened up- they had to play catch up all day). Our groups that endured that were real troopers and their positive attitudes go a long way. They made history though in being the first fishermen/women back in 22 months!
We actually have had a majority of couples in camp so far this season! I dubbed this week Tall Pines Couples Week. We had the social and a few blueberry picking outings, but mostly couples have been doing their thing.
The White Sox/Yankees Field of Dreams game was incredible wasn't it! Even Cubs fans had to enjoy it. The pre-game was pretty cool too! Listening to Kevin Costner talk symbolism of the playing catch with your kid really hit home. The throwing a line in the water with your kid is the same kind of symbolism as playing catch. While we of course want everyone to experience that father/son bond on the Wabaskang, the specific body of water isn't the point. Its the tacklebox and rod just as in the movie it was a glove and a baseball. For those whose Dad's have passed on, hopefully you have some great memories fishing or playing catch that you'll hold forever. For those whose Dad's are still around- make time for those memories! Our opener week we had some newbies here; Jim (father) and Joe (son) as well as Mark (father) and Jim (son) were doing just that. They and their wives/kid were making memories on the water. Is it always easy? No. Lines get tangled, winds make boat maneuvering challenging, and sometimes Dads spend most of the time baiting hooks and taking off fish versus casting. The whole package though is what dreams are made of. Thanks to all those that took the leap of faith to get here and made those dreams a reality!
With the exception to August 9th, guests have said the border has been uneventful both entering and leaving Canada/US. Every guest here has said the extra steps to get here were well worth it, and we've heard numerous comments from guests about the fish just being bigger in general this year! More evidence to support our catch and release efforts.
Feedback we received from guests this week:
"Thanks Earl for such a great job with our fish."
"We love the little touches and details you've made around camp and in the cabins."
"Thank you Ryan and Bridget for making our trip easy from start to finish."
"It was a great time. Earl, Ryan, and Bridget made us feel right at home."
"Ryan and Bridget are the best hosts and the cabins are great and provide great atmosphere for making us feel great while making many memorable experiences for our family!"
With a few groups backing out we do have a couple spots still left this season:
September 4-11 2 cabins left
September 11-18 1 cabin left
September 18-25th 3 cabins left
grouse hunters/ Cast and Blast: we will stay open through October 2nd
Reach out to us 888-413-3454 or firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve your cabin. It's not too late to seize the day. We'd love to welcome you back to Canadian fishing - the true escape.