by Mark Walters
A Great Day on Shultz Lake
The following column is about one day on a fly-in Canadian fishing trip with Chimo Lodge and Outposts, will pretty much explain why we do this adventure every June.
Thursday, June 23rd
High 78, low 49
Today, my brother Tom Walters baked a cake for the first time ever. It was his grandson, Nathan Woodruff’s 9th birthday and it was not going unnoticed.
Today would be a crazy day for 5 of the 8 members of this gang and we would literally be fishing as far apart as we could by boat, foot, boat, foot, boat, foot, boat and foot with the total being 11-miles.
My stepson, 22-year old Joey Dushek and myself would go on a big time adventure where we would go down an extremely shallow creek and drag float our boat to a lake that is well known for having some very large walleye and an occasional monster northern pike. The method that we used to get to this lake is kind of dangerous and very physical.
Tom, Nathan and my nephew, Riley Schuster would travel 7-miles by boat the opposite direction of Joey and I, do a short portage and fish a lake where I had caught a 37.5 inch northern pike, which was currently tied with my brother-in-law, Dick Schuster for the big gator of the week bet with two days left to fish.
The real adventurers on this sunny day in paradise would be Dick Schuster, his son Trent and my 15-year-old daughter, Selina. These three would do the 7-mile boat ride and then a double portage to a lake that we call “Thunder Lake”. Dick and our good buddy, Jeff Moll discovered this lake when they dragged a boat back to it in 1989 had some incredible fishing, slept on an island and got caught in a powerful thunderstorm.
So Joey and I get to Trout Lake and it was physical but doable (Joey and Trent had done it earlier in the week). I have the pleasure of having Joey run the motor while I stand on the front seat in the bow of the boat and cast. This would be the only time this week that I was not at the tiller and what a sweet relief that it was. Joey and I would have several “refreshments” and we’re going to have a blast.
I had been casting “Old Reliable” maybe 15-minutes which is the “Musky” Red Eye when a really big gator hit it. The fight was solid and Joey was very good with the net that the big fish literally swam through. After a careful measurement and photo we released the beautiful trophy to swim another day.
Over on Thunder Lake, Dick Schuster was having one heck of a day guiding his niece and son. A couple week’s earlier, Selina and I had been shopping in Green Bay and she picked out this years “secret lure’ which was a pink and white Dare Devle.
Today, Selina would have the best day for any one in this gang since we started coming here back in 82. Selina’s first fish was 38.5-inch gator that would be the biggest of her life so far and put her in the lead for the weekly bet. A short time later, Selina caught a true trophy when she landed her first 40-inch northern pike and that was great news for the gang as it had been years since we hit the 40-inch mark. Later in the day, Selina caught a 37.5 and a 34. Trent caught a pair of 36’s and this pair of cousin’s who have had a rivalry since Selina was born had a great Canadian experience together. P.S. on that same note.
As I am writing this column, Selina asked me to write, Trent U Suck! Love your dearest cousin and friend Selina!
Joey and I had a blast. As soon as I caught my big fish I gave up my spot on the bow of the boat and Joey started casting and when that did not work out, we trolled for walleye all day and it seemed like all we could do was catch fish and laugh a lot.
About 10:30, tonight we all made it back to camp at the same time where we always do a little boat rodeo coming into camp and splash “ the enemy” in the other boat with paddles and waves.
When we all hit the boat ramp and started telling our days stories, a premonition that I had told Joey all day long came true. Selina’s gator was a forty, mine was forty and 5/8s.
We hooted at the moon, then the sun and laughed the night away.
Live everyday to it’s fullest until your heart quits beating! Sunset
THIS WEEK’S COLUMN IS SPONSORED BY: Hiawatha National Bank