I was up in Minaki last weekend for the annual walleye tournament. I had a great first day with my fishing partner Jody Moon as we managed to boat four walleye that were perfect slot size, all 45 cm.
I though we had everything in the bag but on the trip back from Big Sand Lake two of our walleye died. Nothing like going from hero to chump in about 30 seconds. Our four walleye weighed 7.87 pounds and we would have been one of the top weights of the day. I have never lost a fish during a tournament and I am still baffled as to what happened.
Thanks to Rick Loeb for lending me a couple secret cranks that worked wonders in Minaki. It has been a tough year for me on the tournament side of things, something almost always seems to go wrong. Catching fish too big to weigh in or not enough decent slots for good weight.
I was sick to my stomach when I realized the two of my walleye were stressed beyond recovery, Jody and I will probably never see such perfect slots again in any tournament.
Well that is fishing, you take the good with the bad and just try to enjoy your days on the water.
The fishery in Minaki is in decent shape with lots of small fish and plenty of action. I did manage to boat a few big toothy critters as I licked my wounds and tried to regain my confidence.
Fishing has a lot to do with how you feel. One of my buddies always says that "you can achieve what you perceive." When you get in the zone nothing can stop you. I have been next to boats that are catching nothing and have filled the well in no time. When you feel good and have a pattern figured out you can become unstoppable.
Good luck to all the anglers testing their skill at Shoal Lake this weekend, remember kick some bass!
Navionics has a new GPS chip out for the Lake of the Woods. It is called The Fishing Hot Spots Lake of the Woods 2K. I had the opportunity to try the chip out and must tell you that it is pretty sweet.
This company is based in the U.S.A. and had boats on the lake for 90 days sounding the southern boundary waters. Jeff Brodeur (national sales manager) told me that the company presently has about 10,000 lakes done in North America. Lake of the Woods it regarded as a Top 5 destination for angling and is on the radar for more sounding in the very near future.
I feel pretty safe on the water with my GPS running and my Navionics chip providing key mapping information to my unit. The small flash card sells for just over $200 and is available at several locations throughout the city including Winnipeg Watersports at 880 Century St.
The chips work in Lowrance, Hummingbird, Eagle and Raython electronics products. With the price of gas these days the chip can make your day on the water more efficient and safe as you will always have an idea where you are. No more running around looking for the hump or sunken island, just drive to it and start fishing.
Till next week, keep your lines tight!