Fight Like the Devil
FISHING Muskellunges FISHING MONTANA:
YELLOWSTONE PART 2
The Freshwater Wolves
Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 â€˘ Page 1 MidwestHuntFish.com
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Page 2 • Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 â€˘ Page 3
Fight Like the Devil....................................................... 8 Fishing the Muskellunges
Northern Pike................................................................12 The Freshwater Wolves
The Fish of 10,000 Casts .................................14
The Elusive Demon Fish Known as the Tiger Muskie
Tulibee: Tips & Tactics............................................46 The Other Whitefish
Early Spring Bass Fishing..................................16 Warmer Temperatures Bring Excellent Fishing Opportunities
Spring Means Trout Fishing!...........................18
Can You Tell the Difference?...........................46 Cisco, Lake Whitefish or Mooneye?
Electronic Device Advice on the Ice..........48 Electronics for Modern Ice Fishing
Spring Trout Fishing Tips
Fly Fishing........................................................................20 A Sport for a Lifetime
Be the Bobber................................................................22 Trout Fishing From Inflatable Pontoon Boats
Vacation Getaways..................................................24 7 Affordable Fishing Destinations in the US
Fishing Montana........................................................26 Yellowstone National Park Part 2
History of Fly Fishing ............................................28 in Montana
There’s lakes you can fish and then there’s
Fishing Lake Huron.................................................30 Fishing Missouri.........................................................34 The Gasconade River The Old Man and His
Bluegills..............................................................................36 My Earliest Memories Were of
Fishing With Dad........................................................38 Get an Edge on the Fish.......................................40 Focus on Edges and Catch More Fish
Trolling Systems.........................................................44 Innovative Trolling Aids Catch More Walleye
Page 4 • Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
ARTICLES From The Loading Bench Preparing for the Hunt of a Lifetime
DEPARTMENTS Editorial Marketplace
Hunting Deadly Spring Turkey Tactics Successful Turkey Chasing Techniques
New Way to Learn Turkey Calling New Course From the Most Realistic Turkey Caller in the World
Hunting Hawaii Hawaii, it Turns Out, is a Hunter’s Paradise
The Mighty Axis Deer The Hawaiian Trophy Deer
Great Hunting Dogs What Makes Them?
You Hunt Like a Girl Father/Daughter Hunts Can Work
Poaching Problems Help TIPS Reduce Poaching
50 53 54 56 58 62 64
Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 • Page 5
May - June 2014
Oh Yeah, Baby! …It’s Finally Springtime!
Spring time fishing in the Midwest is some of the best fishing in the Country. Woo Hoo! Spring has finally arrived! And you know what that means: it’s time to go fishing! Walleye, Bass, Northern, Crappie, Catfish, whatever your game is this is, in my opinion the best time to fish. Sunshine and warm weather, at last! It’s time to head for the water and this is going to be a fantastic year for fishing in the Midwest! This also means that it’s time to dig out your fishing tackle. Now is the time most anglers will get their fishing tackle ready and make sure to get their tackle box is organized. Open up your tackle boxes, toss out all the rusted hooks and broken lures. Change all the lines on your different reels and inspect all your rods. Don’t skip this step, I know I have missed out on catching fish because of some rotten line. Imagine you’re fighting a fish of a lifetime and the line snaps. Save the cuss words, make sure to get your gear ready for spring. Just make it a habit or a springtime ritual like I have. Oh, and don’t forget to get your camping gear ready too! If you’re a Parent, Spring also means it’s time to take your children fishing with you. In my opinion fishing is something best passed down from parent to child or grandparent to grandchild. It’s something I look forward to every year. Fishing (and the Outdoors) is something your children can enjoy for the rest of their lives, as long as you make it pleasant for them. If on the other hand, you yell, scream and get upset with them a lot, then they won’t enjoy it and neither will you. Make their fishing trips enjoyable and teach them responsibility at the same time. Show them there is life outside their cell phones and video games. Let them get their own rod and reel ready with your help. Let them pack it in the car, get their own tackle ready. The only thing you really want to watch is the hooks if they’re really young. If they are older let them get involved in planning the trip. Of course, if they need help then you give it to them. What they learn now will be with them the rest of their lives. It is said the first few years of their life builds their character forever. Make their fishing experience pleasurable and they will always love to fish and love you for taking them. Have Fun, Keep Dry, Be Safe and send us pics of your Trophy catch this year! ~ Jim Rogers
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Contributors Ted Takasaki Scott Richardson Kara Wattunen Jason Mitchell Dave Genz Mark Strand Ed Hammond Alyssa Bentley
Robert D. Phillips David Alan Trevor Kuglar Richard Templeton Darren Donnelly M. Jukov Jeffery Guysoni Paul Marsh
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Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 â€˘ Page 7
are a non-schooling predatory fish, who generally tend to stay out of eyesight of each other. They usually lurk near drop-offs from rock or sand bars in the middle of lakes, along weed beds or other vegetation, and in shady waters close to shores that are fringed with overhanging trees. They prefer larger lakes with deep and shallow basins and large beds of aquatic plants. They have a typical ambush predator design, elongated body, flat head, and caudal fins placed far back on the body. The stealthy Muskie hunts by waiting motionless. When a fish swims by (any fish, including other muskies) they strike, impaling the prey on their large canine teeth, rotating it, and swallowing it headfirst. Strangely, the size of the fish a Muskie eats appears to be related to the ultimate size it can attain. As the fish grows larger, the size of its prey naturally varies more. Even if plenty of small fish are available, a Muskie may not be able to grow large without large fish to eat. Muskrats, ducks, shrews, mice, and frogs also appear in the stomachs of muskies from time to time.
By Alyssa Bentley
Page 8 â€˘ Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 â€˘ Page 9
Muskies and Northern Pikes look very similar. The foolproof way to tell a Muskie from a Northern is to count the pores on the underside of the jaw: A Muskie has six or more. A Northern has five or fewer. The Tiger Muskellunge is a hybrid of the Muskie and Northern Pike. Male hybrids are almost invariably sterile although females are sometimes fertile. Some hybrids are artificially produced and planted for anglers to catch. Tiger Muskies tend to be smaller than non-hybrid muskies but grow faster. The body is often quite silvery and largely or entirely without spots but with indistinct longitudinal bands. Tiger Muskies are one of the most elusive and coveted game fish out there.
Muskies are a big strong freshwater sport fish, plain and simple. They strike hard, fight like the devil, and can grow to be huge. The world record Muskie, caught in Hayward, Wisconsin, was 63-1/2” long and weighed 69 lbs. - and just in case you weren’t listening - that’s a big damn fish. You need to be ready and have the right gear. Go too light or get caught unaware and that big elusive Muskie will win the day, and leave you with broken gear and another “I almost had it, but…” campfire story.
If you want to catch a Muskie, you’ll need a heavy bait-casting rod, substantial level-wind reel, 20-35 pound test line, a variety of artificial lures or live bait, and a lot of patience. Allow at least 20 minutes in each location before moving on, the large fish usually aren’t very active. Muskies are generally considered a Trophy Fish, not a food fish. As predator fish, if the food fish in their region have small amounts of toxic substances in their systems, they will gather in much greater quantities in the muskellunges who feed on them. Before eating a muskellunge, pay attention to the fishing advisories of the lake or the state that you are fishing in.
Page 10 • Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
Muskellunges are known to have a varied diet. They will eat other muskies and any fish they see, as well as ducklings, smaller muskrats, shrews, mice, and frogs, and the largest Muskies are known to eat whole adult ducks. There is one report of a Wisconsin man in 1999 who was dangling his feet in the water (not fishing), when a medium sized Muskie lunged and attempted to swallow his toe! He ended up pulling the Muskie out of the water and extracting it from his foot. The foot required 66 stitches and he was eventually allowed to keep the fish, despite the non-legal size and non-legal method of fishing. It is not recommended to use your or anyone else’s toes as bait.
The health and success of the muskellunge relies heavily on the health and availability of aquatic plants in their environment. Minnesota anglers are beginning to notice that some of their favorite “weed beds” seem to be disappearing, thus reducing the spawning sites and hunting grounds of the muskies they like to catch. Measures are being proposed, including greatly reducing the number of docks allowed on a lake shore, thus reducing the human footprint on the lakes.
• 5 or less pores under the jaw
• 6 or more pores under the jaw
Tiger Muskellunge • Silvery body with longitudinal bands • Smaller, but grow faster
• Muskies can live to be 30 years old • Maximum length of a Muskie: 6 feet • Maximum Weight of a Muskie: around 70 lbs • Trophy Length: over 4 feet • Trophy Weight: over 40 lbs • Mature females tend to be bigger than males, but mature and grow at a slower rate. • It takes the average angler 20-80 hours to catch a legal Muskie!
• The Great Lakes or Spotted Muskellunge is the most common variety in the Great Lakes basin and surrounding area. The spots on the body form oblique rows. • The Chautauqua Muskellunge is known from the Ohio River system, Chautauqua Lake, Lake Ontario, and the St. Lawrence River. • The Clear or Barred Muskellunge is most common in the inland lakes of Wisconsin, Minnesota, northwestern Ontario and southeastern Manitoba.
Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 • Page 11
Northern Pike are a mean, vicious
and nasty fish that can go from 0 to 60 in seconds and will eat just about anything that wonâ€™t eat them first! Northern Pike can hit so hard that if you are not careful they will rip your rod right out of your hands! Finding and catching small Northern Pike is relatively easy. They spend most of their time in shallow, weedy areas from 2 to 15 feet deep. But catching those nasty monster Northern Pike is not as simple. They are found among the smaller pike during the spring, but as it warms up in the summer they move into deeper water, 15 to 30 feet or more. Fishing for these big fish becomes more difficult because they are more scattered. Summer angling for northern pike is also difficult if the water becomes too warm. If pike cannot find cooler water they do not eat as frequently or eat very little.
By Robert D Phillips Photos by Pike Strike Flickr
Page 12 â€˘ Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
Northern Pike are best fished during the daylight hours. They are rarely caught while fishing later at night but it does happen. The mature Northern Pike generally stay in one area, hiding in weedy cover waiting for a bait fish or hopefully your enticing lure or bait. Typically Northern lay motionless waiting in ambush in the weeds or near submerged cover like logs or rocks. Then they like to make short vicious lunges at passing bait fish and again at your enticing offering. They can live in almost any freshwater environment. Northern Pike can be found in a wide range of water all over the Midwest and Canada. You can find them in shallow weedy bays and in deep open water. Inlets and bays on the larger lakes or even the Great Lakes in Canada and the US harbor large numbers of large Northern Pike. These bays have slightly warmer water and more food than the open water. Smaller northern lakes of the Canadian Shield can grow trophy Northern Pike, usually because they do not have the heavy fishing pressure of the southern lakes, they survive longer and grow to trophy size. Weedy bays and marshes of most lakes all hold Northern Pike; manmade reservoirs hold large Northern Pike with all that submerged cover created is perfect environment for these nasty boys. Bobber fishing for Northern Pike is a great, fun way to fish. These Nasty Boys cannot resist a big minnow dangling from a bobber. They may sit and just stare, but eventually that nasty pike will strike out and attack. Just cast that bobber and bait close to a likely weed-line, drop off, sunken island or point, then just sit back, relax and enjoy. A bobber rig is easily made, use a 12 inch steel leader and a #1 hook. Attach a 1 1/2 or 2 inch bobber to the line. Add sinkers or split shot to balance. Hook a large minnow in the upper lip or just behind the dorsal fin. Regardless of the type of minnows you use try to use something at least 6 inches long. The strike of a Northern Pike is usually violent. The fish may yank the bobber under on one strike. Release the line after the
strike. A pike often grabs the bait in the middle or crosswise and then run with it. Then it will stop to swallow the bait, reel in any slack line then make your snap and set the hook. The fight of a big Northern Pike will test your tackle and of course your skill. Often they will put up very little fight until they are close to the boat or shore. Then without warning that Northern will make a few long runs or even clear the surface in a leap to throw that hook, so get out there and have fun and enjoy yourself. When Northern Pike are prowling the shallows, casting allows you to fish weeds or snag infested areas you could not otherwise fish. Lures with lively action work best. Metal spoons that wobble entice the strike. Try using bright colors red yellow and silver work fine. Just vary your speed and jerk the bait now and then to attract the fish, again just go fishing and enjoy! After the Northern have left the shallows in summer trolling fast is a great way to entice these nasty predators to strike. Troll just off the weed beds, in about 20 feet of water, with large lipped deep diving plugs that will track straight at higher speeds. Most anglers use stiff rods and level wind reels with 20 to 30 pound test line. With that snake-like body, huge head and razor-sharp teeth, the Northern Pike has a fearsome appearance and a nasty reputation to match. It is not uncommon for a Pike to strike a large Bass, Perch or Walleye struggling on the end of your line. In some cases they will just not let go even when up to the boat. In most waters, the Northern Pike is top dog. They will also feed on muskrats, mice, turtles, salamanders, small ducks and other birds, although they eat mostly fish. Often they will take on other fish half their size. Northern Pike are fun to catch, strike often, and they fight hard. They jump, roll and cause a big scene. Like I said, Northern Pike can be a blast to catch and they are very tasty if you can get the Y bones out, which is not very hard to do. So if youâ€™re up to taking on these Nasty Boys, theyâ€™re out there, waiting, prowling there stomping grounds like Freshwater Wolves.
Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 â€˘ Page 13
Let’s face it, fishing is synonymous with patience; if you don’t have it, a fisherperson you will not make. However, fishing for Tiger Muskie elevates patience to a whole higher dimension. Imagine the anticipation. You cast your “lucky” lure with the hope of catching the TROPHY “Tiger” for the area (new world record from Idaho is 44.26 pounds). But then IT begins... IT being the arduous task of waiting and waiting and waiting for a nudge, a push, anything! And while you stoically master IT, “Tigers” are “bobbing” on the surface (one “bobs” right into your line), jumping in the opposite direction of your cast, and even seen within 1 foot of your location! &$%@# if only you had a net at the ready, one could have scooped him up and claimed the new record! But let’s hit the basics first. For the uninformed, tiger muskies are sterile hybrids between male muskellunge and female northern pike. More often than not, they are bred in hatcheries to then be relocated to various waterways in order to hunt and rid unwanted fish species from those areas. For example, a lake was overrun by “goldfish” and white suckers, annihilating the lake trout population. Once the “Tiger” introduction began, the trout population increased. A direct result of that was the “Tigers” have now grown in size to the point that they are quickly becoming a sought-after game fish.
By Jim Rogers Page 14 • Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
JOKE - How can you tell the difference between a trout fisherman fishing for “Tigers” from a true “Tiger” angler. ANSWER - When a trout fisherman gets a 6-8 pound “Tiger” strike, he complains for hours at how sore his arms and chest are from fighting this huge beast, which unfairly got away. A “Tiger” angler, after having had the tip of his finger bitten off by a 17 pounder, will curse for 5 minutes at his stupidity for not paying attention to those sharp teeth when trying to land the “Tiger,” wrap his digit with an oil-soaked cloth, duct tape or whatever is available, and unceremoniously proceed with his 9,999th cast. Why the 9,999th cast? Because, (1) the end result of the Tiger Muskie allegory in previous paragraph is that the “prize” remained unscathed by means of jumping the hook and (2) Tiger Muskie are reverently referred to as “the fish of 10,000 casts.” Why, you ask again? Because that powerful predator is one of the most elusive species any angler has had the misfortune or fortune to come across. Known to have eaten baby ducklings, this species has a mouth full of teeth that commands respect. Albeit, respect for this species, will be fleeting. While enduring It (the waiting task), one’s frustration management system will eventually fail causing patience-overload to reach atomic levels. At which time, any cursory and/or romanticized notions toward this beautifullymarked demon of the lake will then be totally obliterated... never to return again. But I digress.
Pa·tience / páysh’nss/: The ability to endure waiting, delay, or provocation without becoming annoyed or upset, or to persevere calmly when faced with difficulties. OR, if you’re fishing for the ever elusive Tiger Muskie, Pa·tience / páysh’nss/: The ability to prevent “sticking needles in one’s eyes” while waiting hours, days and weeks for that elusive Tiger Muskie strike (notice it states strike versus land) or occupying oneself during said time frame, by repairing your line that broke or snagged, re-stringing your back-up reel to a minimum of a 10 lb. test line, practicing casting with the new spinning reel or baitcaster, casting every single lure in your arsenal, or, when all else fails, force oneself to learn and/or appreciate the local flora and fauna. Arrgh!
…Patience. Before traipsing hours to the nearest Tiger Muskie watering hole, do research first. Investigate what fish species the “Tiger” is trying to eradicate and then use lures with same/similar markings, i.e., use yellow or orange or white colored lures if the “Tiger’s” food of choice is goldfish or white suckers, use pickerel marked lures to represent perch, etc. So now that you have an elementary idea of the lure’s color-scheme, which type of lure should be used? In all fairness, the lure type (buzzbaits, spinners, floaters, crankbaits, etc) doesn’t really seem to matter. Every angler has their favorite type. Sometimes top water lures work best if the fish are jumping, sometimes buzzbaits work better if the fish are lethargic (buzzbaits make a lot of noise). Use them all and see which triggers the most activity. But if you are only casting for the 637th time, you have a long way to go and it probably doesn’t matter which lure you use anyway. As far as rods and reels are concerned, the best advice is to use a minimum 6’6” rod with either an open-faced (spinning) reel or baitcaster. And use the heaviest pound test line your reel can handle or what you feel comfortable using. After losing one of the biggest “Tigers” during a recent fishing excursion, braided/fused line and spinning reel/baitcaster aficionados have gained a new convert. Never again will a “Tiger” be lost due to ill-suited equipment... next time it will be because the “Tiger” was a worthy contender and meant to fight another day.
Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 • Page 15
By David Alan
A largemouth bass on a Strike King Lure jumps out of the water.
Page 16 â€˘ Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
Often in the early spring you can load your boat with bass if you know where to find the fish and what lures to fish once you locate them. There are several techniques that you can employ to catch these lethargic fish in the early spring months just after the ice disappears from your favorite lake. One of the first things you must do is locate fish in the spring is to locate the warmest water in the area of a lake that you are fishing. One of the easiest ways to determine this is simply by looking up and seeing where the sun is hitting the banks or use your temperature gage to determine where the warmest water is. There are several locations that bass seem to gather in the early spring months including rocky banks, bluffs, flats, and main and secondary points. Steep banks such as rocky bluffs will hold heat better than any other type of structure and is easily fished. Fish will suspend off of these rocky bluffs or hold tight against the rocks. There are several techniques you can use to fish these locations, but the best technique seems to be is to fish suspending jerk baits, spoonbills, and crankbaits. To fish these suspending lures use a jerk, jerk, pause technique or a sweep then pause technique. I have found that the jerk, jerk, pause technique works better on the days where the sun is out and the water temperature is warming and the sweep then pause technique works the best when the weather is less than favorable. Also try pausing your bait for longer time periods often these fish will sit and watch a suspending lure for a long time period before deciding to strike. Your pause could be as long as 30 seconds or a short as 2 seconds depending on how aggressive the fish are. There are two main ways to position your boat when fishing deep water bluffs, you can position your boat straight out from the bluff then cast in to the bank or parallel the bank casting along the bluff. If the fish are hugging the bank then paralleling the bank seems to work the best. Large flats with wood is also an excellent place to find fish in the early months of spring since the wooded flats will hold heat and flats attract baitfish in the spring. The best flats are ones that receive the sunâ€™s light during the afternoon hours. Fishing flats in the spring can be fantastic if the fish move up to feed and they can easily be caught with jerk baits, spinnerbaits, and soft plastic jerk baits. The fish that can be found on the flats are feeding on baitfish actively, and will often hit faster moving bait. When fishing a spinnerbait on the flats make sure to bump every piece of structure that you can. This will often trigger a reaction strike from a bass that is lying on log, stump, or rock. When fishing jerk bait on a flat use the jerk, jerk, pause technique to imitate an injured baitfish. Main Points and Secondary Points are also excellent places to find bass in the early spring months. Fish will move to these locations to feed on baitfish that is attracted to the points. Fish generally suspend off these locations and can be caught with suspending jerk baits and spinnerbaits. Points with some type of structure such as a tree, stumps, chunk rock, or brush piles are excellent spots to load your boat with bass in the spring. Fishing can be fast and furious on points in spring due to baitfish randomly moving to the point which triggers the bass to feed all at once. If you hit a point that is holding bass you can easily catch a tournament winning bag very quickly. In conclusion, fishing in the early spring can be very rewarding and also can be very difficult to locate feeding fish. In the early spring months cold and warm fronts keep the barometer moving pretty regularly and can make fishing tough to say the least. However if you manage to get out on the lake when there is a steady warm front and use the techniques mentioned above you are sure to have an excellent day on the water.
Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 â€˘ Page 17
a long winter spent either indoors reading or watching television or standing on a frozen lake attempting to catch a fish the idea of being outside fishing for rainbow trout when the temperatures are less than freezing sounds like one of the best things a person can do. Yep, the spring of the year is a great time to catch some rainbow trout and below I will outline a few tips that will help you to accomplish this goal. There are two types of water that people like to fish for rainbow trout, lakes and rivers, and below I will list some tips for each type of water so that your bases are covered. These spring rainbow trout fishing tips are based on fifty years of combined trout fishing experience and will serve you well for many years to come.
Rivers can be difficult to fish in the spring of the year due to run-off and stained water conditions, but this doesn’t mean that rainbows can’t be caught. Try to focus your efforts on deeper tail outs and pools and use larger and brighter colored lures the murkier the water conditions are. A key to catching rainbows in the spring whether you are a fly or spin fisherman is the speed of your retrieve. Try different speeds until you find the one that’s most effective on the day you are fishing. Roe and live worms can also be effective when fishing for spring rainbow trout in rivers, but keeping your bait in the rainbow’s strike zone can be challenging in high river conditions.
By Trevor Kugler Page 18 • Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 â€˘ Page 19
A SPORT FOR A
LIFETIME By Richard Templeton
Some of my earliest memories are of fishing, so I was probably around 3 years old when I had my first fishing experience. With some of the most basic kinds of fishing, all you really need is the ability to sit or stand and hold a pole. A long as I had a rod that was light enough I was only limited to how far off my parents felt comfortable letting me go. Now in my 30’s, I don’t have too many limitations to where I fish. Because of my youth I feel an obligation to fish as many of the out of the way places I can while I still have the legs to get me there. One of the only limitations I have on me at the moment is budgetary. But even in my thirties, I’ve noticed a change in how I fish. I’m not jumping from rock to rock like I did in my twenties. I’m not wading across rivers with reckless abandonment. Falling seems to hurt more and I don’t heal quite as quickly as I use to, so I’m more careful with how I wade or on my hike down to the river. I know there will come a day when I’m not very mobile, a day when I pick rivers based on easy access and the presence of bathrooms. The day when I have to pay someone to row me down the river and to tie my flies on will one day be upon me. But when that time comes, I will migrate to the other facets that comprise fly fishing.
In the spring of the year, lakes are probably the best place to fish for these beautiful fish. Right after ice off rainbows are particularly hungry and like to cruise shallow water shoals or the shoreline (ten feet deep or less) where the water temperatures will be the warmest. In these areas aquatic invertebrates become active and hungry rainbows feast on them. When it comes to spring rainbow trout in lakes, these areas are the place to focus your fishing efforts. Fly fishermen should try larva imitations, freshwater shrimping flies, and leeching patterns. For spin fishermen, effective trout lures include Flatfish, Quickfish, and Mepps or Panther Martin spinners. I personally spend 75% of my spring trout fishing time fishing for rainbow trout in lakes so that I can take advantage of the trout awakening from their “winter slumber” spent stuck beneath the ice. In any case, make sure that you get out there this spring and put these simple tips into action so that you can catch a few of the beautiful fish known as rainbow trout.
Trevor Kugler is Co-founder of JRWfishing and has more than 25 years of fishing experience. He currently raises his eight year old daughter in the heart of trout fishing country... Montana. Check out our blog which is focused completely on trout fishing tips & tricks to help you be more successful on the water.
Luckily so much of fishing can be done at home or at the camp site. I have a lot of great fishing memories that took place around a camp fire. We talked for hours about past fishing experiences, drank beer, and just enjoyed hanging out under the stars. Other times I’d head over to a friend’s house and we’d sit at the kitchen table and tie flies. Talking about all the trips we’d take and thinking about all the fish we’d hopefully get into with these flies. There will be a time when I’m spending more time teaching what I’ve learned from a lifetime of experience, a time when I spend more time hanging out with friends and talking about rivers we’ve been to or fish we’ve caught. As much as I like being able to fish difficult out of the way places, I know there is just as much fun in the later stages of fly fishing.
Page 20 • Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
Based out of South Whitlock Resort Owners: Randy & Pat Harer
Whatever type of fishing experience you are looking for we have it at Whitlock Bay on Lake Oahe. Nestled in one of the greatest fishing spots in the country is Lake Oahe. It gives way to some amazing fishing. Record Northern Pike, world class walleye, catfish, small mouth bass and salmon (in the fall) are just some of the different kinds of fish we catch. I can accommodate all types of fishing groups. So if you’re looking for a variety of fishing, look no further! Book your reservation today.
Day Trip Services Provided: • Boat • Tackle • Bait • Fish Cleaning • Transportation to the River (if needed) • A GREAT TIME FISHING! Call 605.769.1113 or visit www.curtislaganguiding.com for rates. MidwestHuntFish.com
Curtis Lagan Guiding Gettysburg SD 57442 605.769.1113 firstname.lastname@example.org
Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 • Page 21
Be the Bobber… Trout Fishing From Inflatable Pontoon Boats By Darren Donnelly
Inflatable pontoon boats are popular choices for trout fishing in rivers, streams and lakes. When you compare them to wading pontoon boats, they allow you to cover a lot larger area in order to find where the fish are hiding. Pontoon boats are lightweight and easy to transport, but provide greater stability and are higher off the water than a canoe. A pontoon is located on each side of the boat connected together by a frame that contains the angler’s seats. They are either maneuvered with oars or you can attach a small electric motor. While the rather narrow canoe is easy to roll over, the wider inflatable pontoon boat is extremely stable and still easy to move along the water. Pontoon boats may have inflatable or solid bladder pontoons. The pontoons have a V-shape that makes the boat easy to maneuver through weeds and around deadfalls or tree branches that might be hanging over the water. Inflatable pontoon fishing boats are also rather spacious Savant Lake, Northwestern Ontario, Canada
VISTA LAKE Outfitters
(807) 584-2253 • 800-665-LAKE (5253) • email@example.com www.vistalake.com
Fabulous Canadian Walleye and Northern Fishing • Trophy Moose and Black Bear Hunting • Modern Outpost Cabins • 8 Different Portage Lakes • Boat and Motor Rentals Available • Only Outfitter on a fantastic 12 mile long body of water known as Vista Lake
Your Hosts: Dennis, Evelyn & Ryan Mousseau Savant Lake, ON POV 2S0 Page 22 • Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
when compared to a canoe, while much lighter and less cumbersome than a rowboat. The extra room comes in handy especially if there is more than one angler on the boat. One advantage of these fishing boats is that many are stable enough to stand up on while fishing. When fishing, this can be very useful as it allows you see fish swimming or feeding near the surface. With a canoe you are very limited and have to stay seated for safety, this restricts your ability to see fish. Many trout fishing areas require that anglers cover miles of fishing ground before finding the right spot where the fish are biting. For waders this can be difficult or impossible. A pontoon fishing boat provides the perfect solution in such cases. Inflatable pontoon boats are designed to be portable. The inflatable version will fit into most vehicle trunks while the solid bladder boat can be placed in the back of a pickup truck. Both models are light enough for one person to handle quiet easily. With the rugged design and stability of a pontoon fishing boat they have the ability to handle white water. While most pontoon boats can easily handle Class III white-water there are some models that are sturdy enough to handle even the toughest Class IV white-water. So they are perfectly capable of handling the rugged challenges of trout fishing in rivers. Many inflatable pontoon boats are specifically designed for trout fishing and have built-in storage that allow the angler to efficiently stow their fishing rods and reels, tackle, nets, and other equipment. Getting the hang of maneuvering your personal pontoon boat is not difficult at all. The design of the frame is such that it maximizes the efficiency of each oar stroke. Once you have mastered the paddling technique, you should have no problems reaching even the most difficult fishing holes. Choosing between an inflatable and solid pontoon boat will depend on your specific circumstances. For instance, what type of vehicle do you own, a car or a truck? Inflatable boats are smaller and can fit in the trunk of a car but the tradeoff is they take longer to set up. Even with their rugged design the inflatable pontoon runs the risk of being punctured. On the other hand, a punctured inflatable pontoon is relatively easy to patch up. A pontoon boat is perfectly designed to provide anglers with a dependable means of getting to the best fishing spots. That means you can spend more time fishing and less time getting there. The convenience and versatility of these boats cannot be over stated. The pontoon fishing boat comes in a variety of sizes and configurations to meet most anglers’ requirements. Inflatable Pontoon Boats are a great way to enjoy the sport of fishing. Visit InflatablePontoonBoats.org for more information on this exciting method of fishing and to find some great deals on pontoon fishing boats. MidwestHuntFish.com
When you think of trophy fishing, you should be thinking of Eagle West Resort.
The Lower Brule Sioux Tribe is an excellent fishing destination on our scenic Reservation adjacent Lake Sharpe on the Missouri River
• Outstanding numbers of trophy musky, lake trout, walleye, smallmouth bass and northern pike • Five spacious, immaculate and fully equipped cabins, all of which offer a spectacular view of the lake. • Propane BBQ, fridge, coffee maker, toaster, dishes and cutlery • KingFisher boats in a 16 or 18 foot size, outfitted with 4 stroke fuel efficient 25 or 50 horsepower YAMAHA motors. • Canoes, paddles, life jackets • Complimentary boat tour of the West Arm for first-time customers • Guides are also available upon request • Dock service, fuel service at current pump prices • Freezer fish wrap and wharfage. • Brand new fish-cleaning house which is attached to the resort office and bait room.
8 hours from Sioux Falls • 4 hours from Fargo
Eagle West Resort
website for great package deals! PO Box 570 Vemillion Bay, ON, Canada Ph: (807) 227-5292 firstname.lastname@example.org www.eaglewestresort.com
Brand New Cabins For Rent! Please contact us at 605.473.5666 or email@example.com www.lbst.org Licenses available in person by mail or phone,credit card, check or cash. 22695 Little Bend Rd. Lower Brule, SD 57548
Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 • Page 23
By Paul Marsh
PaintedBunting • Rainbow Trout on White River • Flickr
is clearly a factor that will be considered. This means that your trip will likely be in the contiguous 48 states unless you happen to live in Alaska or Hawaii. If you do live in either of those states, you have so many affordable fishing opportunities that you have no need for this article anyhow. These fishing vacation destination areas are all places you can drive to. When you’re planning a family fishing vacation, and you want to keep costs down, there are a few considerations you are likely trying to keep in mind. The second factor will be the quality of fishing in the place you are considering. In this I will include the species of choice that you will be targeting. So what we have done in this article is keep these factors in mind and provide options for different kinds/species of fishing. I also have included destinations from East to West in the United States. So, here they are.
Olympic Park (Washington) Great fishing is available here for cutthroat trout and steelhead. There are a number of excellent campgrounds throughout the area. swazileigh • Flickr The best fishery in the park is probably the Sol Duc River.
Lees Ferry/ Lake Powell (Utah & Arizona) In this region, you will find excellent trout and bass fishing. The trout fishing is on the Lees Ferry end of things, while the bass fishing is in Lake Powell. For the kids, bank fishing Anita Gould • Flickr in the lake even can produce some active fishing for panfish and catfish. The canyon area below the dam contains one of the highest trout densities to be found anywhere in the world.
Page 24 • Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
Smoky Mountain National Park (North Carolina & Tennessee) Of course this is a favorite family vacation destination anyhow. Michael Hicks • Flickr Add to this some good fishing for smallmouth bass and trout (rainbows and browns) and you get the fisherman’s ears to perk up too. The two streams that we’d suggest would be Abrams Creek and the Little River. If you are looking for a bit more solitude, there are many smaller streams throughout the park that hold small trout.
Grayling (Michigan) This area is right in the midst of the North Woods and the Michigan version of the Ausable River (in the next section we’ll mention New Grayling Visitors Bureau • Flickr York’s version). On the Ausable, which runs through Grayling, you will have opportunities for a variety of different types of trout. As you move downstream, there is also some good smallmouth bass fishing. Also, as you move down, you will encounter populations of steelhead and salmon.
Adirondack Park (Upstate New York) This beautiful area has fishing for trout, salmon, pike, walleye, and bass. The fisheries are a combination of beautiful streams like the Ausable and Boquet (that’s really how it’s spelled) and small and large lakes. The massive lake in the region is Lake Champlain. If you will be fishing Lake Champlain you will need a boat. If you are an experienced kayaker, this is an ideal way to do it. Lake Champlain is one of the nation’s foremost smallmouth bass fisheries. It also is a good fishery for species like lake trout, landlocked salmon, rainbow trout, pike, and walleye. The most famous stream in the region is the West Branch of the Ausable River. The fishing is centered on Wilmington, New York. You will find several knowledgeable fly shops that will assist you in making fly selections for the area.
Ross Barclay Adirondack • Flickr
White River Area (Arkansas & Missouri) The trout fishing gets famous here in Lake Taneycomo near Branson, Missouri. Besides trout, there is some pretty decent smallmouth bass fishing as well. To top it off, not far away is some excellent largemouth bass fishing, catfish opportunities, walleye fishing, and even muskie fishing at Pomme De Terre Lake. The next really great section of the White River is just below Bull Shoals Dam. Hundred fish days are not unheard of here. If you want to spend the money, fishing guides are quite reasonable here and well worth the cash outlay for the fisherman new to the river.
Niki Gunn • Flickr
This fish will NOT slip from your grip! Cutthroat Trout Snake River, Wyoming
with Uncle Ray’s
Yellowstone National Park (Wyoming & Montana) Here is another destination that will be a hit with the whole family. There are numerous attractions for everyone and of course, some great fishing. There are the famed rivers like the Yellowstone and Madison. Of course there is also Yellowstone Lake, with its population of lake trout (they are trying to rid the lake of this species) and native cutthroat trout. There are many lesser known streams you may want to visit to avoid the crowds. Some ideas here would include the Gardner River, Lamar River, Grayling Creek, and Soda Butte Creek.
We hope these ideas help you out. A vacation like one of these can really be done at a reasonable cost. If you are willing to camp, the costs can even be less. Happy fishing!
Paul Marsh co-authors a website that emphasizes teaching outdoors skills in the areas of hunting, fishing, and camping, all with the highest priority on assisting families and newcomers to these activities. His website www.Family-Outdoors.com has information on camping, hunting, and fishing from all perspectives. More information on this topic can be found at Family Fishing Vacations. MidwestHuntFish.com
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UNCLE RAY’S FILLE FILLET BUDDY is a MUST-HAVE for the HUNTERS AND THE FISHERMAN! For a list of dealers or to purchase, visit www.uncleraysfilletbuddy.com Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 • Page 25
FISHING MONTANA: PART 2
Page 26 â€˘ Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
Charles Wandag Bozeman, MT Flickr
By M. Jukov Fly fishing in Montana should be on the short list for any angler that enjoys chasing trout in beautiful mountain rivers. Montana is home to an astounding number of high quality blue ribbon rivers, lakes and spring creeks. It’s the northern latitude and proximity to numerous mountain ranges that produce and ample source of cool snow melt that help to make the state a trout factory. Montana’s trout streams are filled exclusively with wild fish. Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks have a very limited hatchery program and stocking is restricted to high mountain lakes and reservoirs where trout reproduction is limited. Montana fly fishing guides are some of the best in the planet. Hot beds for fly fishing like Bozeman, Missoula, Ennis, West Yellowstone and Dillon attract some of the world’s best professional guides and outfitters. The combination of productive rivers, great scenery, and high quality outfitters make Montana a prime destination for anglers from around the world. With the vast number of high quality trout rivers outfitters, fly shops and lodges in Montana planning a fishing vacation to Montana can be overwhelming. Here are five tips to help you plan the perfect Big Sky state fishing trip.
Choose your lodging accommodations carefully Your choice of lodging will be a big factor in your enjoyment of your fishing vacation. Lodging can be broken down into fishing lodges, hotels, vacation rentals and outfitted camping trips. Fishing lodges are the most expensive option, but also provide a lot of amenities. Lodges are often located in beautiful rural settings and frequently have direct access to rivers. Montana fishing lodges usually include all meals (generally very high quality dining!). Since all of the guests are also fly fishing lodges provide for a social atmosphere with like-minded guests. Hotels are a great option to save some money and explore Montana on your own. Many Montana towns like Bozeman and Missoula have a vibrant night life that many guests enjoy by staying at an in-town hotel. Vacation rentals are a great option for families and larger groups and allow your crew to cook your own meals. Vacation houses and cabins are often located in beautiful settings and can offer a lot of room. If you have four our more people in your group they can also be cheaper than hotels. Many outfitters in Montana also offer overnight camping trips either as float trips on rivers or as wilderness horse pack trips into the mountains. Outfitted camping trips are surprisingly “deluxe” and guests enjoy great food while still “roughing” it.
Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 • Page 27 kyphone • Bozeman, MT • Flickr
History of Fly Fishing in
MONTANA By Jeffrey Guysoni
Tom Roche • Madison River • Bozeman, MT • Flickr
Decide which rivers or regions you would like to target Do you have a specific target river in mind or do you want to sample a lot of different fishing options. Rivers like the Bighorn are world famous, but do not have many other high quality trout fisheries nearby so if you plan a vacation there you will be fishing the same river each day. Other regions like Dillon, Bozeman and Missoula have numerous rivers in their prospective regions allowing angler to sample different rivers each day. If variety is important, make sure to ask outfitters or lodges what the different fishing options are in the region.
Decide what type of fishing is most important
There are a variety of different techniques used in the sport of fly fishing including nymph fishing, streamer fishing and dry fly fishing and many anglers prefer one over another. Each river also has its own character, some stretches have huge trout but lower numbers and others provide fast action with small fish. Fishing conditions also change during the course of the year and different seasons showcase different styles of fishing. Beginning anglers generally are most interested in having some action and experiencing the sport. The perfect trip for an entry level angler will most likely center around nymph fishing on rivers with a high fish count that produce a lot of action. Seasoned fly fisherman may prefer to target dry fly fishing. As an outfitter, I always try to determine what a client is looking for. Do they want to target big trout, dry fly fishing, lots of action, etc? Make sure you discuss your ideal style of fishing and what is important to you when you talk to a lodge or outfitter.
Consider non-fishing activities What do you plan on doing during your down time on your Montana fishing trip? Will you fish every day of your trip or do you want to take off a few days to sight see? Do you enjoy larger college towns or want to be as remote as possible? Are there any members of your group (like a spouse) that won’t be fishing? There is such a large quantity of great fishing in Montana that you should be able to target exactly the kind of trip that you are looking for. Often nonfishing activities are an important part of the equation. Some areas, like Ennis are great fishing towns, but do not offer as many non-fishing activities as a place like Big Sky or Bozeman. This is an especially important consideration if you have a non-fishing spouse or if your group takes some time off from fishing.
Book as early as possible Prime dates and the most experienced and knowledgeable guides begin booking as early as a year in advance. While we still book trips as late as a week out even during the summer, the longer lead time we have the more flexibility there is in designing a trip and the better the odds that match clients the perfect guide. Pagewe 28 •can Midwest Hunting & Fishingup - Mwith ay-June 2014
Did you know that the modern form of fly fishing dates back nearly 3,000 years? Back then, fly fishing in Montana wasn’t what it is today...they really weren’t too concerned with rods or the greatest reels, because, of course, fancy equipment wasn’t available. In light of the technology of their time, early fishermen in those days had to get by with a little less. But over time, innovative and enterprising minds, manufacturing advancements, as well as popularity of fly fishing have brought quite a bit of change. If you were asked to define fly fishing, you’d probably define it as a sport. Indeed it’s the case that this type of fishing has acquired the shape of a proper athletic sport. Meanwhile, some fishermen are in it to put food on the table. Because of this any definition of this fishing category would depend on who you ask, as per her or his standards and experiences. With the background out of the way, the question remains, what is fly fishing? Fly fishing can be categorized in a few main subdisciplines, wet and dry fly fishing. Both subcategories of fly fishing make use of the same standards of fly rods and reels. The primary difference between these two types is that in dry fly fishing, the fisherman stays dry, in wet fly fishing he gets wet. Dry is best suited to circumstances that are constituent upon fast running water or a live stream. But some people are able to dry fly fish in ravines or shallow water, where there’s a pool-type formation and containing a large quantity of of fish. But this type of fishing requires dry flies. Wet fly fishing is a bit different and mostly is reliant upon wet nymphs, lures and underwater antics. In case of long weeds and areas where it’s hard to reach the bottom...this is where wet fly fishing works best. In the early ages, when fly fishing was evolving as a sport and a profession, this became the prevailing wisdom for quite a while. That said, until the past century, fly fishing equipment companies have depended upon this fundamental concept as the basis of gear sales. It’s easy to feel like a fly fishing pro if you know your tools like what lures attract which types of fish. Fly fishing is a challenging game to master and, like other sports its output depends on a lot of factors. For example, if I were to take the weather aspect, Winter can complicate things for the fisherman. You need to use fly reels with bigger diameter so that it can withstand the damage of ice forming around the line. Similarly, if the person’s height is 5’5’’, he or she really needs fly rods eight feet long or more. Your rod and reel technique matters also. A 2 o’clock rod position means the rod is high above ground level, which provides stable control to your side. Similarly, you need to consider the reel type and casting methodology as well. Similar to any sport, the best way to improve at fly fishing is to practice and read instructional guides. Over time, you’ll see your technique improve and you’ll be catching bigger and bigger fish. Pretty soon you’ll become a master of the sport, at which point we hope you come join us up in Montana. MidwestHuntFish.com
Dakota Waters Resort
Latham Jenkins Flickr
“We make it our priority to give you a great camping and fishing experience.“
Park/Campground resort on Lake Sakakawea • Water and electricity • Off-sale, kayak rentals and tackle shop • Fishing Licenses • Boat rental • Fish Cleaning Station • Slip rental • Playground • Convenience store • Live bait and gasoline sales • Restaurant with Full Bar • Full-service
All Trips • M
r • Bozeman
, MT • Flick
Fly fishing can be a relaxing retreat from the busy, fast-paced lives we all lead. Such information overload is all around us and to have an outlet through which to step away from it all, even if for just a few hours, and recharge is something everyone should do. Fly fishing is just that kind of escape, especially in in areas like Montana, California, and Michigan. Great fly fishing can be found in other locations without a doubt but Montana is definitely at the top of the list. I’ve been fly fishing the wide open spaces of Montana for 8 years. I’ve fished just about every state in the U.S., and even some other countries, but I always come back to my home state of Montana because I just can’t get enough of it’s wide open spaces, beautiful skies, and peaceful outdoors lifestyle. In my day job, I’m a Montana fly fishing guide in beautiful Yellowstone national park.
5803 Beulah Bay Road, Beulah, ND. (701) 873-5800 www.facebook.com/DakotaWatersResort
Welcome to some of the finest private water fly-fishing you will ever have the chance to experience. Savery Creek Fishing allows you to enjoy exclusive access to over nine miles of prime trout habitat on both Savery Creek and the Little Snake River. Large portions of these waters have undergone extensive river restoration resulting in superior habit for trout.
PACKAGES 7 NIGHT/6 DAY: $3,600 6 NIGHT/5 DAY: $3,125 5 NIGHT/ 4DAY: $2,600 4 NIGHT/ 3 DAY: $2,025 3 NIGHT/ 2 DAY: $1,400 • Our lodge is within walking distance of Savery Creek. • Wireless internet, satellite TV, and cell service (for AT&T). • Packages include 2x1 guided fly fishing, lodging, meals, and transportation from Yampa Valley Airport (Hayden, CO) or Dixon, WY airport to the lodge.
• Rainbow trout • Colorado River Cutthroat trout • Brook trout • Tiger trout • Brown trout
We’re going to make your fly fishing trip a memorable one !
PO Box 220 | Savery, WY 82332 | 307-383-6118 | 307-380-7278 | firstname.lastname@example.org MidwestHuntFish.com
Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 • Page 29
there are lakes you can fish on and then there is fishing
lake huron By Richard Chapo
m fishing michigan
Page 30 â€˘ Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
Lake Huron fishing is some of the best in both the states and the world. Here are some facts on Lake Huron. It is the 2nd largest of the Great Lakes of North America. This makes it the 3rd largest fresh water lake in the world. It spans 23,010 square miles, which makes it about the size of West Virginia. There are 3,827 miles of shoreline. The length of the lake is 206 miles and it is 183 miles wide. The average depth is 195 feet and the maximum depth is 750 feet. Like the other Great Lakes, melting glacial ice formed it.
Fishing Lake Huron • Matt MacGillivray • Flickr.com
Now, that is all very interesting, but the real question that occurs to most of us when we think about a really big lake is does it have really big fish? The answer is a resounding yes. Lake Huron Fishing is thriving again, but it has been a long hard environmental fight. When the first European explorers first wandered to its shores and named it after the local Indians, the lake was clean and teeming with native species of fish. As civilization spread along its shores, so did pollution. The history of Lake Huron as a fishery has been a horror story of the effects of pollution and the mismanagement of our natural resources. It has also been an encouraging tale of what can be accomplished when sportsmen and environmentalists work together to restore and improve conditions. Today, Lake Huron is home not only to reviving natural species, but also many imported species as well. MidwestHuntFish.com
The Chinook salmon that is famous for its heroic journey up the rivers of the Northwest to their spawning grounds is one example. There has been an active stocking program in Lake Huron for several years now. Chinook salmon are released into the lake after been raised in hatcheries. The fish thrives in the lake although they have not been able to reproduce as they have not been able to adapt their genetic spawning urge to Michigan and Canadian rivers. They still live for an average of over five years and grow to full adult size in the Lake. Lake Huron walleye angling is some of the best available in the US, maybe even the world. Saginaw Bay, a bay located in Michigan, is the best location on Lake Huron to find walleye, and July and August are considered the best months of the year to find the fish. According to some of the most experienced walleye fishermen, there are several specific areas to check out if you Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 • Page 31
really want to find some great fish: the first of these is the islands and inlets in Lake Huron, and reefs surrounded by deep water. Other places where the walleye collect are Tawas Bay (in the north) and the Kern-Wedock Hot Ponds (this area is a good place to find walleye year round). The walleye is a species of fish (scientific name Sander vitreus) that is native to Canada and the northern United States. The name “walleye” comes from the fact that the eyes of this fish reflect light, the way the eyes of a cat do. It is olive or gold in color, with the maximum size ever recorded of a walleye being 42 inches long and 25 pounds in weight. Walleye is considered by many people to be the best tasting freshwater fish, and sport fishermen seek it out as well as commercial angling companies. Saginaw Bay has its own club devoted to this fish, the Saginaw Bay Walleye Club. Lake Huron walleye angling is so popular in this area that there is even a Michigan Walleye Tour led by this club. These angling tours can be a great way to get acclimated to angling in a particular area or for a certain fish, so it’s definitely worth looking into. Additionally, there are even private guides who can help you plan your trip. Lake Huron walleye angling can be a rewarding and delicious hobby, and worth the trip to this area to find a good angling experience. Charter boats are available on both the American and Canadian sides of the Lake. The boats often specialize in finding the salmon. Although this is a true fishing experience, it is only one that is possible in Lake Huron. There are also large numbers of bass, walleye, pike, and muskie to be found. Lake Huron fishing has been brought back from a critical point and is rapidly returning to its glory days. It is the responsibility of our society to not only protect our natural resources for our use, but to insure that they will be there for our grandchildren also. The successful stocking and fishery management programs in Lake Huron show what can be done.
Page 32 • Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 2014
The Michigan state record Chinook Salmon weighed more than 46 lbs., but in excess of 20 MidwestHuntFish.com lb. are considered to be fairly large specimens.
FISH Northern Pike ONTARIO CANADA!
Walleye • Trout
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Ask about our Special Pricing for Fishing Season!
Features and Amenities: Sand Bar Lounge • Business Center • Conference Center • Dry Cleaning Service • Elevator • Fitness Center • On-Site Free, Hot, Home-Style Breakfast • Free, Hotel-Wide, High-Speed Internet Guest Laundry Facilities • Indoor Heated Pool & Hot Tub • Meeting Room • Motorcoach Parking • Outdoor Patio Smoke-Free Facility • Whirlpool & Fireplace Suites
312 Island Dr., Fort Pierre, SD 57532-0608 | Reservations:  634.3444 | www.americinn.com/hotels/sd/fortpierre MidwestHuntFish.com
Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 • Page 33
jdl2000 • Flickr.com
By Paul Marsh
The Gasconade River
Limestone cliff overlooking valley of Missouri River, near Bluffton John Lillis • Flickr.com
Page 34 • Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
begins its life in southwestern Missouri as a small Ozark stream. In its upper reaches, it offers good wade fishing for smallmouth bass, bluegill, and other small stream species. As the river grows in size, it becomes more amenable to float fishing, and other species of fish enter the scene, including catfish and largemouth bass. Still, from it’s headwaters to the town of Jerome, where it meets Little Piney Creek, the Gasconade is a classic Ozark stream. In this section, the water is very clear, and the river has many deep, rocky pools as well as fast, churning riffles. This is prime smallmouth bass habitat, probably the best in the state of Missouri. Both numbers and size of the fish are world class, with many fish pushing the three to four pound range. Smallmouth bass tend to live in the rocky pools and the faster riffles, where they feed primarily on crayfish and large aquatic insects. Largemouth bass lurk in the slower pools and backwaters, where they feed on minnows, frogs, and tadpoles. Channel catfish can be found in similar water types, and the panfish are everywhere. Below the town of Jerome, the river begins to slow down and become somewhat less clear. It still is an Ozark stream, but it is more gentle and slow flowing. Below this point, largemouth and spotted bass start to become more common than the smallmouth. Also, walleye begin to show up in fishable numbers, making this lower part of the river a very interesting place to fish. And the smallmouth are still there, all the way to the river’s mouth at the Missouri River near Hermann. Although the smallmouth bass are fewer in this reach, they tend to be larger. They are also more concentrated, as they tend to live in the few areas where the current is faster.
Paul Marsh is an a outdoor writer and website owner. His site is Family-Outdoors and further information on the topic of this article will be found at Gasconade River Fishing. MidwestHuntFish.com
Rick Mester • Flickr.com
Also, in this final reach of river, the Gasconade becomes an excellent fishery for large catfish. Both channel and flathead catfish can be found in large numbers, and some fish in the 20 to 30 pound range can really make things interesting. Worms, chicken livers, and small sunfish are all good catfish baits for the Gasconade River. An article about the Gasconade River would be incomplete if it didn’t mention its tributaries. While the Gasconade itself offers fine fishing, there are hundreds of miles of tributary streams that offer fishing that is nearly as good. One fine tributary stream to look at is the Big Piney. The Big Piney flows through the heart of the Ozark mountains, and provides both fine scenery and excellent float fishing for smallmouth bass. It is a clearer, faster moving river than the Gasconade, and resembles a western stream in many ways. Another good tributary is the Big Piney’s sister stream, Little Piney Creek. Little Piney Creek offers some of the state’s best fishing for wild rainbow trout, as well as some good opportunities for warm-water species. So the Gasconade watershed offers something for just about every kind of angler. Whether you are looking for a big water experience for large catfish, or a slow, easygoing float for smallmouth bass, or a day wading a small stream for wild trout, you can find water you are looking for in the Gasconade watershed. The Gasconade area is also an understated haven for nature and unique attractions...
The Cave Restaurant on the Gasconade River near Richland, MO • milanite • Flickr.com
“SNO BEAR” Guided Trips Available
Open 365 24/7 • Guides For Fishing Call For Pricing • Group Rates • 4 brand new, 800 square foot, 2 bedroom cabins • Rooms will sleep 2 to 6 comfortably. • TV and high speed wireless internet in each unit, outdoor porch and a grill. • Access to a private boat ramp, fish cleaning station and beach area. • 24-hour gas station is located nearby.
www.haybaleheights.com 4355 87th Ave NE | Devils Lake, ND 58301 701.351.3130 Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 • Page 35
David Kalis Flickr.com
Wisconsin DNR • Flickr.com
I started fishing a little lake just south of Somerset, Ohio, called Clouse
Lake about 35 years ago. Matter of fact, when I first started fishing it, I fished with a fly rod. One day, I was fishing and noticed this older gentleman trying to get a little plastic boat on his car after a hard day’s fishing. He was using a fly rod too. We began chatting and discovered we lived about 10 miles from one another. He lived in Pleasantville. As the conversation closed, he said he would call me sometime and we would go fishing together. I thought “Yeah, I bet he calls me.” Imagine my surprise when he called two days later and wanted to know if I wanted to go fishing with him the next day. Page 36 • Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
By Charles White
Andi Jetaime • Flickr.com
Earl and I became good friends,
we fished Clouse many times and about every other place that we could find, that held water. He was an excellent fly fisherman. There was only one thing wrong with Earl, he liked to catch bluegill. Actually, he loved catching Bluegill. He showed me how to clean bluegills in a matter of seconds. Here is how he did it. First, he got out his board and filet knife. He would scale the fish. Second, He would cut around the head but not clear through. He would leave just a piece of meat right under the head. Then he would twist the head and pull and the whole insides would come out at one time. He could clean bluegill faster than anyone I have ever seen. One day, I got teasing Earl about fishing for bluegill, I told him the only reason anyone would fish for bluegill is because they couldn’t catch a bass. I have to admit, I had seen him catch bass on his flyrod while fishing for bluegill. Anyway, Earl said to me that he could catch bass anytime he wanted. I just laughed. So, Earl put on a little bigger fly and threw it about a dozen times and out comes a bass. Not only was it a bass but it weighed about 6 and 1/2 pounds. He just looked at me and smiled, never said a word, then threw it back. I was dumbfounded, to say the least. He then went and tied his little fly back on and fished for bluegill some more. I sat in shock the rest of the day. I learned two lessons that day, one was never to run my mouth about people who like to fish for bluegill and the second was, right when you think you have the bull by the horns, some old fellow is going to show you different. By the way, I never teased Earl about his bluegill fishing again. Earl passed away not too long after that, I was one of the last people he asked for.
Charles E. White has fished for almost 50 years for bass from California to Florida. In his lifetime, it is estimated that he has caught over 6,000 bass. His biggest bass is a 12 pound 14 ounce that hangs on his wall in his office. Charles has fished with people who have never fished for bass before and taught them how to become successful anglers and also has fished with the Pros in Florida. His new website about fishing for bass is at www.bassfishingweekly.com.
Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 • Page 37
By Richard Templeton Gasconade River, MO Scott Coryell Flickr.com
Page 38 â€˘ Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
My earliest memories were fishing with my Dad. There was a small pond just down the street that we would walk down to after dinner. Dad would carry all our gear which included the very basics: cane pole, bobber, and a can of warms. The pond had a good supply of bluegill which provided endless delight to my still young and developing fishermen’s heart. Two years later, we moved to a house that had a lake in the back yard. Dad bought a canoe and paddled me around the lake for hours at a time. When my younger brother wanted to join in on the fun, (which was rare) we’d fish from our neighbors’ dock while Dad sat on the bench and took pictures of us and our fish. While on summer break from college, he took me fishing in Alaska. Over the course of a week we caught silver salmon, red snapper, halibut, and lingcod. Every day we limited out on all the species we were fishing for. At night we slept on a house boat and the captain’s wife cooked our freshly caught fish. We were also nearly arrested for interfering with a commercial fishing vessel (or so the Coast Guard claims), but that’s a story for another time. Before I moved out West, he flew up to New Hampshire and we spent a couple days fly fishing some of the storied rivers of New England. Dad was never really into fly fishing, but I was and he was more interested in spending quality time with me. After several years of living in Oregon, my parents came out for a visit. I was eager to share some of my favorite fishing spots with Dad. A couple years earlier he had a hip replacement so he wasn’t as mobile as he once was. I picked a small stream that meandered through a cow pasture, it didn’t have cows any more just some of the remnants of a cattle operation that had long been abandoned. He was having a difficult time, so I’d cast, hook a fish, hand him the rod, then jump back to take a picture of him catching the fish. How many times had he done this for me when I was young and having a difficult time on the water? Now he was old and having the same problems. It was that moment when my dad’s mortality hit me in a very real way. The man who had taught me so much and nurtured my love of fishing would one day not be there. But everything that I’ll accomplish in fishing and in life is a direct result of those early adventures. Those trips were much more than catching fish. They were a way to connect and a spring board to talk about life. All the joy I’ve been able to experience of the years, the friendships that have been forged, all the memories fishing, I have those because my dad took me fishing.
Gasconade River, MO • Scott Coryell • Flickr.com
Rick Mester • Flickr.com
Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 • Page 39
By Ted Takasaki and Scott Richardson
Walleyes, like so many creatures of nature, make a living by using edges. They travel along edges and feed along edges. Learn to focus on edges and you’ll catch more fish. This is exciting stuff, as evidenced by the grin on Hall of Famer Ted Takasaki’s face!
Page 40 • Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
“Edges, edges? We don’t need no stinkin’ edges!” OK, so the bandit in the Bogart classic was talking about “badges” and not about walleye fishing. But, that silly phrase might just help us remember an important piece of fishing wisdom – anglers should recognize the importance of edges. Just like deer or turkeys, fish of all kinds, including walleyes, love edges for exactly the same reasons as their solid ground counterparts. The main problem any angler faces is, “so much water and so little time.” But anglers who know what edges to look for can quickly focus on the 10 percent of water that holds walleyes on any given day. Keys to success are recognizing different types of edges, anticipating walleye movements along them based on seasonal and daily conditions, and knowing what tactics are best to tempt them with, once the fish’s position on the edges is known. Getting Edgy It all starts with the basics. Buck Perry taught us that fish travel through a system from deep water to the shallows to feed or spawn along well-defined features on the bottom. They hold along subtle variations within the drops in depth called breaks along the way. Think for a minute what that means to you on the spots you fish. It’s easy to see why the old river channel is so important when fishing reservoirs, like Lake Oahe. The channel features the deepest water in the impoundment, and its former banks provide the contours which fish migrate along. Add a structural, underwater point which reaches from shoreline to the channel, and walleyes have all they need – a way to travel through the system and a path to shallow water (where they often feed) and back.
Anglers at Oahe will pitch jigs to shallow shoreline points in spring and troll bottom bouncers and crankbaits along contours at other times of the year. At times, the contour is at 10 feet. At other times, it’s the deeper breaks. But it’s always on an edge of some kind. Don’t expect all edges to be pronounced. Some are quite subtle. Lake Erie’s bottom is essentially featureless for miles, so a break of a foot or two can mean a lot. Walleyes find them and use them. Variety Among Edges Our apologies to Buck, but structural edges are only part of the story. For example, structure in rivers is critical because it creates another kind of edge – current edges between faster and slower water. Rivers feature many of them, known as eddies. Current edges will form in front of, and behind, obstructions, whether manmade or natural. These current breaks include holes in the river bottom, points, downed trees, wing dams, bridge abutments, and so on. Current also plays a role where feeder creeks empty into reservoirs and natural lakes, especially in spring and fall when walleyes are drawn to moving water. Try 3/8-ounce jigs tipped with shiners at places like the mouth of the Menominee River on Green Bay or the Rainy River on Rainy Lake. Vertical jig and slip with the current while using your trolling motor or anchor on the old river channels, which serve as walleye pathways. Walleyes also gravitate to edges between hard and soft bottoms because different kinds of aquatic creatures inhabit each area. Transition spots provide a smorgasbord as a result. Subtle changes on the breakline or small rock piles will concentrate fish.
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Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 • Page 41
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Page 42 • Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
Wisconsin’s Lake Winnebago is a classic example where weed edges are critical. Most anglers know enough to concentrate on outside weed lines. But, they often overlook three other important weed-related edges: the inside weed line, the edge created by the tops of the weeds, and the edges surrounding pockets and alleys in the vegetation. Each weed edge can be as important as the others. Try drifting with the wind or trolling with the electric motor, using a spinner and split shot or a small bullet shaped sinker over weed tops. But, weed beds can be massive. Just as you did with the outside and inside weed edges, narrow the search by focusing on the “something different.” Walleyes often hold where a small patch of plants in the bed rise above the others, like tall cabbage rising from a bed of coontail. Walleyes will often be in the cabbage in big numbers. Toss a marker buoy or enter a GPS waypoint when a walleye strikes so the spot can be found again. Try targeting the pinpointed area with slip-bobber rigs. Some species of aquatic plants prefer soft bottoms while others prefer a harder bottom of small gravel and sand. Look for places where two types of weeds border one another. That often signals two different areas of bottom content where hungry walleyes find a more varied diet. Other kinds of cover have edges, too. Anglers at Devil’s Lake target vast forests of submerged trees. Tournaments have been won trolling crankbaits on leadcore deep enough to just tick the upper branches. Anglers also do well by finding points in the tree lines, anchoring above them and vertical jigging or using slip bobbers. Even rocky, sandy or soft-bottomed flats feature edges. On Mille Lacs, fishermen use live-bait rigs or bottom bouncers and spinner rigs to target the little points within their irregularly-shaped outlines. Again, it’s the “something different” that yields results. Good sonar units are mandatory to find the spot on a spot. All models help identify the edges of structure, cover and transitions between hard and soft bottoms below the boat. Recent advances, like Humminbird’s side-imaging, can paint a visual picture of the bottom out to the sides which is detailed enough to see elements like weeds, rocks and wood and how they are positioned on breaks. Think, Think, Think Subtle edges are often ignored. Water clarity is an important one in walleye fishing. Even though they are superb hunters and can feed effectively while using their lateral line sense, walleyes show a preference for feeding where they can see what they’re chasing. After rainstorms, runoff from rocky terrain is often cleaner than the main river, so fishing the mouths of feeder creeks in regions like that makes sense. Where runoff comes from farm fields, the main lake may be clearer. Either way, places where dirty water and cleaner water meet will often attract fish. Wind blowing into a shoreline-connected point can create a mud line where walleyes feast on confused baitfish. The wind works to your advantage where you are less likely to spook shallow predators. There have been many times on reservoirs like Oahe when windy shorelines produce as long as the breeze is blowing, but action stops when the wind changes direction. That’s when it is time to move on to the windy side. Each type of edge is important in its own right. But, experience has taught us that the more kinds of edges that come into play, the more likely walleyes are there. A general example would be a structural edge, like a point, combined with cover and wind-blown mudlines. That is a recipe for walleye action. So, who needs stinkin’ edges? We do. MidwestHuntFish.com
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Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 • Page 43
Nick DeShano, who followed in his father’s footsteps and is now leading Off Shore Tackle and its innovative trolling aids, holds up a giant walleye.
(Photo: Mark Romanack, Fishing 411 TV, and Ted Takasaki)
The term, “Like father, like son,” aptly describes Bruce and Nick DeShano, the men behind Off Shore Tackle. For example, Nick has his father’s enthusiasm for drag racing. But he can’t take part like his dad because Bruce has more free time now that Nick is taking over day to day operations. Nick also has his father’s love of fishing and trolling is his favorite tactic. And why not? It works to find fish fast on big water like Saginaw Bay and Lake Erie, where the pair have spent hours in search of walleyes. And Bruce has spent a lifetime helping make trolling easier and more productive for everyone. Bruce DeShano had no trouble convincing Nick to follow in his footsteps. “I was free to choose what I wanted to do,” said Nick DeShano, 38. “But the industry is a pretty fun business to be in. And the people you get to work with are some of the greatest anglers in the country as well as the up-and-coming guys. It was easy to convince me to stay in the business.”
By Ted Takasaki and Scott Richardson
Page 44 • Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
Off Shore Tackle’s mission: to provide anglers with everything they need for trolling successfully As a teenager, Nick was first mate on his dad’s charter boat while trolling for huge king salmon. That was about the time Bruce began developing the first products that would eventually make Off Shore Tackle into a leader in the fishing industry. Its mission: to provide anglers with everything they need for trolling successfully. Nick remembers watching his mom and dad put together the clip releases that were the first products. Bruce hoped to sell them to companies already making downriggers. Unlike the downriggers on the market at that time, his clip release allowed fishermen to see the rod load up when they had a hit. When other companies weren’t interested, Bruce used the idea to start Off Shore Tackle. Later, Bruce designed trolling boards with the help of walleye pros at the time. He also added snap weights to Off Shore’s arsenal. From that time forward, Off Shore was able to help anglers sift through the water column up and down and side to side to find fish fast. Off Shore was taking off when professional walleye tournament circuits, including the Professional Walleye Trail, were growing. Trolling was effective and became popular. “It was the hot new thing to do,” he said. “Sometimes, timing is perfect.” As Nick grew older, father and son fished together on the Michigan Walleye Trail, which was a proving ground for some of the best competitive anglers in North America. When they had free time they would troll Saginaw Bay near their Michigan home for big ‘eyes. In fact, 5 to 7 pounders were so common that Nick was surprised when they competed on lakes other than Saginaw Bay that produced limits of just 17 inchers. “I didn’t know that walleyes even grew that small,” said Nick, laughing. Still, walleye fishing is Nick’s favorite. “It’s hard to beat reeling in a big king salmon. But walleyes are fun. If you get one, you usually get a lot. They’re a lot easier on equipment (than big salmon), and you don’t have to go as far from shore. Walleyes are a hard fish to beat as far as just going and fishing,” Nick said. Trolling offers several advantages over other methods of fishing, he added. Though it’s fun to catch walleyes by jigging or rigging, the fact is the fish tend to be smaller than walleyes brought to the scales by trolling. Trolling is also a great way to introduce newcomers to the sport. It’s easy to notice when a planer board darts back signaling fishon, whereas it takes time to develop the “feel” of a fussy walleye softly inhaling a jig. “You can take people who have never fished before,” said Nick, “and they can see a (Tattle) flag go back. They know a fish is on.” For tournament anglers fishing new water or big water, trolling helps find fish in the limited time they have to prepare. Due to that factor, trolling also appeals to weekend warriors who have to find fish fast or go home with empty livewells. Nick on New Waters When fishing a lake for the first time, Nick advises to start at local bait shops. The staff will point you toward the “community spots,” the ones that everyone knows about. Go there first, check out the action and see how deep fish seem to be. But don’t stop there. Study the lake map to find similar places with similar structure farther from the ramp, where crowds will thin. If you’re in the Great Lakes, dropoffs may be extremely subtle. Even a foot or two is enough to hold fish. Electronic mapping coupled with GPS is a great tool to find and follow breaks in the middle of nowhere far from shore. Next, look for baitfish. If shiners are the main food source for that body of water, they’ll be closer to the surface. Shad will be in the middle zone. Suckers and creek chubs will be on the bottom. Walleyes will be nearby. For weighting systems, Guppy Weights and Tadpoles are two MidwestHuntFish.com
excellent choices. Guppy Weights can be used as snap weights and/ or as in-line weights and Tadpoles will take crankbaits or spinners down to extraordinary depths. Start with snap weights and Guppies. Put on a lure or a crawler rig, let out 50 feet of line on the line-counter reel, snap on a weight, then let out 50 more feet, then add an Off Shore planer board and run it to the side. Off Shore has made its trolling boards even better in 2014 by adding an OR-16 release to the back of the board. The OR-16 release has a pin in it which makes it almost impossible to lose the board. Repeat the process while changing only the size of the weight each time from 1 ounce, 1.5, 2 and 2.5 ounces. Four baits are now running at different depths in the water column. Guppy weights also come in 1/2 ounce, and up to 3 ounces. Off Shore’s Tadpole weights work for deep fish which are down 30 feet or more. They can also be used to run lures shallower with less line out. See www.offshoretackle.com for a video that will show you how to rig it. The weights are made of zinc, a metal that allows Off Shore to be more exact about the weight than lead, which tends to vary considerably. In addition, zinc is more environmentally friendly. If using crankbaits, troll fast at first, say 2 to 2.5 mph. Make “S” turns to speed up the outside boards and slow the inside ones. Spinners work best at 0.8 mph to 1.7 mph. Slow down a bit when you get a fish to see if the speed change triggers more bites. To stay on the school, mark the location on the GPS and electronic mapping system (if the boat is equipped with either or both). When fishing big water, GPS is a must for safety reasons. If a storm or fog rolls in, you have to be able to find your way back to the ramp. Pay attention when a fish strikes. Where was the bait in the water column and how fast was it moving? If a certain weight produces a fish or two, change one of the other lines to that particular weight. If you get another fish at that depth, change another line to run at that spot in the water column. With three lines at the same depth, use the fourth line to experiment with depth and different lure shapes, spinner shapes and sizes and colors. Never stop experimenting! Although one color may be catching fish, switching to another color might produce more or larger fish or both. Some uninformed anglers believe that trolling is a lazy way to fish. Not so. Something always needs to be done, whether trying new colors or lures or blades or clearing weeds off lines. Stay busy. “Don’t fall into the mindset you have to do it ‘this way,’” Nick said. “Try other ways. Everybody thinks this is the way they have to do it. But fish have don’t rules. They’re just looking for something to eat.” If the action slows, reset the lines at four different depths until fish are located again. Switch to inline weights if fish stay at the same depth for a long time or when walleyes are shallow. The baits can be set just 10 to 12 feet back from the boards, which allows for tighter turns. Nick said he and his dad are aware some anglers are put off to trolling because they think they need lots of expensive gear, including line-counter reels, special trolling rods and planer boards. But Off Shore’s Mini boards are made to be used with the rods you already own. These mini boards are small so storage is not an issue. They’ll fit into a coat pocket if need be for Canadian fly-in trips. The Mini Boards are perfect for smaller lakes, but they work on big water too if the weather is calm. The trick is to just to keep them moving so they don’t sink – and keep the rod tip close to the lake surface to prevent the boards from popping out of water. Another advantage: mini boards are extremely sensitive to strikes, even more than Tattle flags, Nick said. He’s used them with as many as five colors of leadcore line. “They are quite the little tool,” he said. Honestly, he loves anything that helps troll more effectively. Like father, like son. Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 • Page 45
By Casey Kowalski Well folks, Spring is here, and walleye season has come to an end here in Minnesota. After a long, cold hard-water season, I think I speak for all of us when I say it is definitely time for a little change! Most of us have switched things up a bit and chased after pan fish for a while, however for myself, once march hits, my attitude and determination shifts and I soon find myself venturing out after Tullibees! Tullibees are considered a non-game fish species that a lot of anglers would not normally target. My friends and family on the other hand love these tasty treats! Once they claim their flavor from the local smoker, these fish become a hit with everyone who I share them with. If you love the taste of smoked fish, then this sort of thing is right up your alley, and once you have tried these fish, you too will find yourself out on the lake during late ice chasing these high flying fish. You may ask yourself, “What does one look for when trying to target this fish?” Well, for the most part, it is fairly simple. If you have access to the internet and a GPS with lake contours, you can easily find good Tullibee holes. Taking into account DNR lake surveys and depth charts, one can pinpoint locations on their GPS to fish. What you usually look for in a lake are deep mud/gravel flats and deep drop offs at 30’+ in depth. Deep underwater points are also good starting spots. The nomadic ways of Tullibee can be found roaming various depths of the water column, so a flasher type of fish finder will greatly increase your odds of tying into one of these beasts! Also, staying mobile is a great help so being outfitted with either an ATV or snowmobile is key (especially this year) in locating and staying on top of these fish. One will find out the value of a good auger because punching a series of holes in the area you plan to fish will be a must. Also, when putting your transducer down, a blank screen shouldn’t deter one from wetting a line. A flashy lure may be the ticket in attracting these fish to your location. In my experiences, I will set one rod up with a flasher spoon. This flasher spoon is attached about 12 inches above a tear drop style hook that is tipped with a wax worm. Ripping the flashing decoy up and down with your other rod available will be a key to producing fish. Colors that have worked well for me in the past are chrome, blue, and purple. Tullibees forage mostly on insects and smaller fish near the bottom so make sure to keep an eye on your sonar at all times for varied marks. Lures that are staples for this type of fish are Buckshot rattle spoons and Swedish pimples. Castmaster spoons also work well when the fish seem to be finicky. The best time to ice fish for Tullibee is during the early morning hours and just before dusk. I hope this tidbit of info sheds a little light on the crazy fish that is the Tullibee. This fish can be a fun alternative to break up the long winter and once the bite is on, you will know why! Also, I hope that my experiences and knowledge have helped you gain a bit of an edge the next time you hit the ice. Thanks for reading and checking out fishaddictions. com. Your feedback and posts are much appreciated!
Can You Tell the Difference? Cisco (Tullibee), Lake Whitefish, and Mooneye
Cisco are also commonly called Tullibee or Lake Herring. Both the Cisco (Coregonus artedi) and Lake Whitefish (Coregonus clupeaformis) are found in Lake of the Woods and other lakes in Minnesota. Ciscos are commonly caught by ice anglers, while Lake Whitefish are occasionally caught. Both fish make tasty tablefare. Smoking these fish are quite popular. Many anglers have a difficult time telling the difference between the two species. They each are identifiable as a member of the Trout/Salmon family by their body shape and adipose fin. The main distinguishing feature is their snouts. The Lake Whitefish has a snout that overhangs the lower jaw. The lower jaw of the Cisco extends up to or beyond the tip of snout. Lake Whitefish can grow to larger sizes than Cisco. The Minnesota state record Cisco weighed 5 pounds, 11.8 ounces, and was caught in Saint Louis County. The Minnesota state record Lake Whitefish weighed 12 pounds, 4.5 ounces, and was caught on Leech Lake. Mooneye (Hiodon tergisus) are similar in appearance to Cisco and Lake Whitefish. Mooneye are characterized by having large eyes. They are one of only two members of the Mooneye family, the other being the Goldeye. You are most likely to catch Mooneye while fishing the Rainy River, or near the mouth of the Rainy River in the Pine Island area. Mooneye are often caught by anglers using flies, especially during July when mayflies are hatching in the Rainy River. The Minnesota state-record for Mooneye is one pound, fifteen ounces. That fish was caught in the Minnesota River in Redwood County. Source: Minnesota DNR Page 46 • Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
Casey Kowalski on the ice MidwestHuntFish.com
Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 â€˘ Page 47
Since the days that Dave Genz tinkered with using early flashers in the same hole he was fishing out of, there have been many years of electronic revolution and evolution. So where does that leave us, as ice anglers? We sat down with Genz, on a rare break from his “fish pretty much every day all winter” program, and asked how he uses the latest electronic devices to help him find and catch fish through the ice. He spends more time out there than anybody. He travels farther than anybody. He has a technical and creative mind. We hope you pick up some ideas by studying his system. Q: There have been a lot of advancements in electronic equipment since you started modernizing the sport. As a practical matter, what is the state of the art, in your mind, when it comes to ice fishing electronics? Genz: I use a GPS all the time, with the map chips. I have a quality lake map in there if it’s available for the lake I’m on at the moment. That’s what lets me find the places I want to drill holes and start looking (for fish). I seldom use a handheld GPS, because I find I struggle to look at a small screen and locate where I am and see the big picture. So I like a larger screen, maybe 5 inches or so. I would even take a larger one, but it gets impractical to carry it around. I mount my GPS on the dash of my snowmobile. Then I can navigate easily while I’m driving across the lake. On the dash, I actually have three devices mounted – the GPS, a Vexilar (flasher), and a (underwater) camera. One of my favorite positions for fishing is sitting on the seat of the snowmobile, and wearing Ice Armor lets me sit there (outside) on most days. The auger is on a rack on the front, and Fish Traps are mounted on racks on the front and back. It truly is my winter bass boat, the latest version of what I had in mind even in the early days. I keep another Vexilar, rigged in a Genz Box, so I can hole hop or use it inside of a fish house. That’s my system. Page 48 • Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
Flasher Q: How do you use the GPS? How do you decide where to drill holes? How do you then look over spots, so you know whether to stay or keep moving? Genz: One of the big things is to find depressions in flats. Sometimes it’s only a couple feet deeper than what’s around it, or maybe it’s 5 feet deeper. On those huge flats, those are the key areas. This is where those new maps, with the 1-foot or 5-foot contours, really shine. In a bay or on any big flat, I want to know where the deepest parts are. That’s where I’m going to drill some holes. And it helps me find the weedbeds, so I can find the green weeds. Just finding weeds from the summer isn’t enough, because they might all be brown and down. Q: So you find the depth you want to check. How do you discover those other things, such as the state of the weeds? Genz: You have to drill holes. It still comes down to drilling holes. I use the camera to look for weeds, and see what shape they’re in.
In addition to noticing the eye-popping bluegill that Dave Genz is holding, check out his setup, as described in this article. The gear is a big part of Genz’s Winter Fishing System. He mounts a flasher, GPS, and underwater camera on the dash of his snowmobile, and often fishes seated on the sled. When he sets up a Fish Trap or kneels on the ice, going hole to hole, he uses a second Vexilar rigged in a Genz Box, as shown at lower left. (Image: davegenz.com)
Q: And you look for fish with the camera? Genz: Not usually. If I see fish on the camera I don’t look away, but the flasher is still the best tool for catching fish through the ice. When you’re fishing multiple holes, it’s so much faster to go hole to hole and drop the (flasher) transducer down there and read instantly everything that’s down there. Q: You’ve also said that, even when you’re using a camera that you like the flasher to be running at the same time, largely because it sees farther out to the side. You’ve called it the early warning signal. When you see fish show up on the flasher, then you shift your gaze to the camera screen to watch the fish arrive at the bait, so you can study its reaction to the presentation. Do you like using the flasher when searching for fish because it sees farther out to the side than a camera typically does? Genz: That’s part of it, but again it comes down to speed. When you have a whole lake to check out, you don’t get it done if you take time to lower the camera down every hole. I also adjust the Vexilar depending on what I’m doing. Q: What do you mean? Genz: I love the new 9-degree transducer. It’s naturally a narrow beam transducer, but it’s designed so that when you turn up the gain, you’re reading the lobes of the cone angle. (The sonar signal) is not just a straight upside down cone. When you turn it up, you can read those lobes, so it lets you see farther out to the side, even though it’s a narrow beam transducer. When I’m in search mode, I turn the gain up, so I can see a wider area (in practical terms, this means you have the potential to see more fish, out farther to the side). When I’m in fishing mode I turn the gain down, to decrease the amount of side coverage. Then you know fish are close by you when they show up on the display. MidwestHuntFish.com
Q: So you use the camera quite a bit, to see what’s down there with your own two eyes, but you tend not to use it when you’re in high speed search mode. Is that accurate? Genz: The flasher is by far the number one tool. If I could only have one, it would definitely be my Vexilar. The GPS is amazing technology, too. It cuts down the amount of time it takes to locate fish. Then the Vexilar cuts down the time it takes to catch fish, and probably makes the difference between catching the fish and not catching it. Q: What about the idea of using a camera and flasher together? Do you still do that? Genz: Yes, and it’s fun to do. Another thing that does is helps you learn to read your flasher. You watch the jig on the flasher and camera together, and you realize you can see the worms squirming on your hook. You wonder why the line of your jig is fluttering (on the flasher), you look at the camera screen and see the worms are moving down there, and realize you can actually see that on the Vexilar. You see fish come in on the flasher and then watch them on the camera, and go back and forth between the two and you really get a sense for what it means to understand the mood of the fish by watching it on the flasher. I’ve always called the Vexilar my mood indicator, because I could tell what kind of reaction I was getting from the fish, depending on how I’m jigging it. That’s still the same, and it’s one of the most important skills you can have. Note: Dave Genz, known as Mr. Ice Fishing, was the primary driver of the modern ice fishing revolution. He has been enshrined in the National Fresh Water Fishing Hall of Fame and Minnesota Fishing Hall of Fame for his contributions to the sport. For more fishing tips and to order his new info-packed book, Ice Revolution, go to www.davegenz.com. Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 • Page 49
By Sean Evenson
As spring approaches each year, my thoughts begin to migrate towards the upcoming turkey season. Although I have only been hunting turkeys for about eight years now, mature gobblers have quickly become one of my favorite quarries. At least for me, there is just something about the tones of thundering gobbles that start to erupt just as the sun breaks the horizon. In my short span of chasing turkeys in the Midwest with archery tackle, there are a number of techniques that I have employed in order to be successful, of which, I would like to outline with my “Spring Turkey Tactics.” Page 50 • Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
The first and most important aspect of my spring turkey season is finding the birds. I typically will head out two weeks or so before the season in an attempt to locate the turkeys in the areas that I hunt, most of which are gained-access grounds obtained through knocking on doors of the local farmers. I have found that most farmers in my area are more than willing to allow responsible hunters onto their properties in pursuit of turkeys, mainly because of the havoc they tend to reek on the lands they encompass. That, however, is a topic for another day. Once I have attained permission, I simply will scout at longer distances from the vehicle. After I have found some birds and identified the number of toms in the flock, I tend to switch gears from search mode to patterning. Just like whitetails, turkeys can be very pattern-able and often a creature of habit. Whether it is right off the roost, mid-day travels, or as they make their way back to their roosting sites, they often tend to work in the same or similar pattern. This brings me to my number one turkey hunting tactic:
1. Hunting off the Roost
The night before the season (assuming I have already patterned the flock) I head out in anticipation of locating exactly where the turkeys are roosting so that I can plan out exactly where to setup the blind for the morning’s ambush. There are a few things to keep in mind when hunting out of a ground blind. One is that, for turkeys, you typically don’t need to worry about having cover in which to “blend” the blind into a surrounding. For whatever reason, turkeys are usually not “blind shy” so an open field will work just fine. The next and most important aspect of blind hunting turkeys is to always try and make sure that you setup your blind so that it is not facing directly east. We all know that the sun rises in the east, so if you are in a ground blind, the sun will shine in and brighten things up to a point that will give you up to a turkey’s main line of defense, its sight. Last, when hunting out of a black walled blind, wear black (this includes a facemask for optimal concealment). Turkeys have extremely good vision, so if you are not blending in as best as possible, they can and will pick you off, which will more than likely negate all your time and hard work from scouting. Once you have watched the flock fly up to roost for the night, you are ready for the morning hunt, with the exception of the usually long walk out and setting up the blind. I will almost always setup up my blind the morning of the hunt, mainly because I don’t want to risk being seen and potentially blowing them off the roost. When morning comes, and I mean early morning, well before even a hint of light can be seen on the horizon, I set out to the target location. This is when it really helps to know the land you are hunting because you want to get close enough that they will hopefully drop down close to your decoy set, but not too close that you will risk bumping them off the roost. I will usually try to setup within about 75 to 100 yards from the roost. This allows me to get close enough that they can drop down in close range of my decoy set, but far enough out that they will not be spooked by my approach and the noise from setting up the blind. Once set, it is time to sit back and enjoy the show.
2. Hunting the Roost
One common piece of knowledge that you will often discover when scouting for turkeys, is that they often prefer to roost in the same location night in and night out. This is assuming that they have not been recently disturbed by predators, such as the turkey hunter. Nevertheless, by knowing the roost location and the transition zone (feeding and mingling area) a blind setup in between these two locations can be a very deadly tactic. It was this strategy that allowed me to harvest my biggest turkey to date. Just like any other hunting method, scouting is the common denominator. I typically won’t hunt the roost until after scouting for at least a couple of days. This is just to ensure that the turkeys are doing the same thing every day and that they are following a certain pattern. That being said, just because the birds are doing the same thing every day, does not mean they will follow the same time frame. I have found over the years, when using this tactic, that turkeys do things on “turkey time” and may not follow the MidwestHuntFish.com
same time frame that you have planned for. In addition, just because the turkeys may roost in a certain area one night does not mean that they won’t roost somewhere else the following, usually due to external influences such as hunting pressure and predation. This just reinforces the importance of scouting. I remember a particular hunt where I had been scouting for almost a week. Every night one big old tom and his harem of hens would come around the same bend in the river and then follow the edge for 500 yards to a farm yard where they would roost in the oak plantation that existed behind it. I couldn’t have been more excited the evening I had set out to ambush them only to find out that when I got there, they had already made the turn around the river bend, two hours earlier than the previous several days. This had made my setup impossible to execute without being seen. I was visibly disappointed and it was at that moment when I had discovered the notion of “turkey time.” All was not lost however, as I did end up harvesting the big tom the following night while set up along the river bank in the travel route between transition zone and the roost. The tom and all of his hens unknowingly walked by my ambush at 15 yards, allowing me to put my 100 grain G5 Montec right through the goodies, culminating in my first and biggest tom to date.
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Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 • Page 51
3. Run n’ Gun
It has been my experience that things don’t always work out the way you have planned and after spending many hours in a ground blind, sometimes it’s nice to take a more proactive approach rather than sitting and waiting in a blind. In addition, desperate times call for desperate measures and when the season is running low, one may need to get more aggressive. In that case, the Run n’ Gun method may be preferred. This method is a tactic commonly used by shotgun hunters and is very effective especially if the birds are not hanging around out in the open, making it much more difficult to pattern them. This can also be a great tactic during the middle of the day when the turkeys have left the open fields for the woodlots. In any case, the way I usually approach this method is to find a route into the woods that provides the most cover. This is to prevent the birds from seeing me in my approach in the event that they are hanging out just inside the woods out of sight. Once in the woods, it is best to start out with some light calling in hopes of getting a response to tell you that there is at least a gobbler in the woods and to provide some kind of a general direction of which an enticed bird will approach from. Starting with light calling is important because you don’t want to blow them out if the birds happen to be close by. When employing this method, I will typically wait anywhere from 15-30 minutes calling every few minutes or so. Toms are not always vocal so you want to give it enough time to be confident that there is not a bird making his way towards you before moving on. This is an action that I will repeat until a tag is filled or I am confident that there aren’t any gobblers in the area. If anyone has ever still-hunted for deer, this is a very similar tactic.
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www.northernstatessupply.com Page 52 • Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
As a bowhunter, using the Run n’ Gun tactic can be tricky in terms of drawing back for the shot and remaining unnoticed. In order to increase the odds of getting a shot off before being detected, I like to use a decoy. The idea behind this method is staying mobile, so a big bulky decoy can be less than ideal. In this case, usually a single hen will work great. Not only to work as an attractant, but to also give the gobbler(s) something to focus on in the moment of truth, thereby increasing the odds of staying undetected during the shot process. Another thing to keep in mind is how to setup in relationship to the decoy. When blind hunting, the decoy set is typically straight out in front, so the blind is providing the cover allowing the ability to draw back and carry out the shot. In the woods however, I try to setup perpendicular to the decoy so that the gobbler is not facing me when I draw back for the shot. Two things are accomplished with this setup, the gobbler(s) will be less likely to see you as you draw back your bow and the second is that it will open him up for an ideal broadside shot. Although, this turkey hunting method does present its own challenges, it does provide the hunter another viable option for success.
The last method, and probably my new favorite, is one that I am fairly new to as it was just introduced to me last spring by my good friends Brent and Nicole Larson from Field of Dreams Productions. This method is called Reaping and is a newer style of aggressive turkey hunting. Similar to the Run n’ Gun, it is a mobile style of hunting. However, instead of the turkeys being in amongst cover, you actually want them out in the open. Yes, the purpose is to have those big aggressive toms see you! Other than your weapon of choice, the only other key necessity is a full strut decoy. The decoy that I personally use is the Pretty Boy by Carry-Lite. Any strutter decoy will work, but it helps to make it look as realistic as possible, such as using a real turkey fan or even an actual mounted gobbler. The way to go about employing this method is to locate a flock of turkeys and identify a hunt-able tom(s). This method will work on jakes also, but using an aggressive decoy like a strutter can sometimes hinder jakes from coming in close enough for a shot. Once a tom or group of toms has been located, crouch down and move slowly towards the birds while holding the decoy out in front of you. This can be tricky, but it is important to stay unnoticed behind the decoy. In order to help blend in, wearing black to match the color of the decoy is ideal; however, basic camo is also sufficient. As you move slowly towards the flock, it helps to stop periodically and turn the decoy 90 degrees before turning him forward again and continuing on. Employing movement like this helps to add realism to your decoy as you approach the flock. As I said before, this is an aggressive tactic not only in the hunting style itself, but also in that it works by triggering an aggressive response from the tom(s) you are hunting. If anyone has ever seen a big old tom all fired up, then you know that they can be downright nasty. Once you get to about a hundred yards or less from your quarry, get ready because having an intruder approaching is usually too much for a love struck gobbler to handle. Stake the decoy into the ground and get ready for the tom(s) to come running. If they still aren’t interested, then continue to move closer until you can trigger a response. Once the birds are on the move, its then up to you to close the deal. I have seen and heard of gobblers being shot at five yards or less while using this method. If nothing else, it will be sure to give you a rush like nothing you have ever hunted. MidwestHuntFish.com
Is This the Best Way to Learn Turkey Calling?
New course features video-based lessons from the most realistic turkey caller in the world Mark Strand Outdoors How it Works Through a series of video modules, Professor Eye patiently walks you through everything he’s ever learned about calling wild turkeys. “Guess I’m getting old enough now that I don’t want to take this stuff to the grave,” he jokes. “We always talk about how I got my degree in Turkeyology from Johnson Mountain University, so it was easy to come up with a name for the school.” Eye cut his turkey hunting teeth in the Missouri Ozarks, but has traveled more widely than any other turkey hunter, across the United States (including Hawaii) and Mexico. His system of scouting and roosting turkeys, setting up and calling birds has passed the tests of travel and time. “I don’t try to tell anybody that their favorite hunting methods don’t work,” says Eye. “I just tell you, and show you, what works for me, has worked for me everywhere I’ve gone.” How well can you learn to call turkeys from studying videos? Just like you’re sitting over his shoulder, according to the Professor. “Video is such an amazing teaching tool,” says Eye. “I’ve been building video projection seminars for years and bringing them to sports shows, conservation clubs, churches, anywhere they’ll have me. But a seminar lasts for an hour, and you can’t get into all the details that make such a difference. “In Calling is Everything, I was not limited to a certain amount of time. We show entire hunts. You see birds come all the way in, with all the calling, and I talk over the top of it, so you know what I was thinking and why I was calling a certain way. After building the class, I think it’s the best way to learn how to call turkeys.” Bill Waldron, another member of the class, jokes about hiding it from other hunters.
“The fewer people who know about the knowledge they will get from this class,” he says, “the more turkey they will leave for me to take.” So How Much? Lifetime access to the course, including all updates developed in future years, is just $97. You check out securely using PayPal (you don’t need a PayPal account) and you’re instantly in the class room studying with Professor Eye. And if you have a question, you can ask away, via email. Go to www.eyesontheoutdoors.com & click “Online Classes” to sign up. If you want more details on the class, go to http://www. eyesontheoutdoors.com/about-calling-is-everything. It’s exciting when you bag a turkey, no matter how it happens. But when gobblers and hens are firing back at you and getting closer and closer, that’s the essence of the game. Those are the hunts you remember forever. Those are the hunts you can create for yourself, consistently, after you study with the most realistic turkey caller in history.
Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 • Page 53
Overlooking the taro farm fields in Hanalei Valley, Kauai, Hawaii, USA
The Hawaiian Islands, the most isolated archipelago in the world, with high forested mountains and a multitude of climates provided a remarkable opportunity for the establishment of first plant, insect, and animal visitors that arrived on its shores. By James Brown
”Most avid sportsmen plan trips to the south or the Midwest for their hunting trips. But there’s a new destination to add to the mix, and it doesn’t require cold weather gear.” Page 54 • Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
Hawaii, it turns out, is a hunter’s paradise. Hawaii’s terrain and natural beauty offer an added bonus for hunters looking for more than just a stroll in the woods. Obviously, fishermen in Hawaii have no difficulty filling their days, but the islands are full of large game as well. Wild & Feral Boar, Goats, Axis Deer, and Mouflon Sheep roam the mountains without any natural predators, which makes hunting in Hawaii an environmental necessity. The idea of living off the land is an important value in Hawaiian culture and you’ll often hear hunters say that the “Aina [or land] Provides.”
Axis Deer • nick3216 • flickr.com
Kalij Pheasant - Male
Are you ready to hunt in Hawaii? Oahu, Molokai, Lanai, Kauai or the Big Island of Hawaii? Bow or Rifle Hunts, Spot & Stalk, Fair Chase, Ground Blind, Tower Blinds, and Dog & Knife (Polynesian Wild Boars Only)? No worries,
Hawaii has it all.
Mouflon Sheep Hawaii is the only place in the U.S. to hunt pure free range Mouflon Sheep. Known as the “European Bighorn” the Mouflon thrive in Hawaii’s beautiful rugged and unique terrain. They were introduced to Hawaii in the mid 1950’s. Mouflon sheep are generally hunted in steeper open upland terrain and have excellent eyesight. Trophy Black Hawaiian and Mouflon rams sport horns in the 32”+ range. It is common to see 20 - 30 sheep per day. These sheep are a true prized trophy.
Black Hawaiian Sheep Black Hawaiian Sheep also known as the Black Corsican are a cross between a European Mouflon and a domestic Barbados Sheep. They are solid black with coarse hair and a wooly undercoat. Males usually have a 3-8 inch mane on the lower neck, along with horns. They can weigh up to 150 pounds. Females weigh up to 100 pounds. Black Hawaiian Sheep are grazers and eat grass and forbs. Rolling countryside with grassy stretches are ideal for these animals, and they require a daily water supply in warm weather. Males are very aggressive toward each other, and all Black Hawaiians are gregarious in nature.
Black Hawaiian Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 • Page 55 Sheep
By James Brown The Axis deer is a trophy quality deer that is very dominating over any other breed of deer in the forest. Some hunters prefer to hunt Axis deer over any other because of the large horns that are on this animal. Of course, there are many hunters that prefer to hunt to provide meat for their family table and Axis deer meat is the best meat of all wild game deer in the forest. The bodies of the Axis deer are considered by most hunters to be very beautiful. The spots on the body of the Axis deer help it to blend in with the natural surroundings of land that can be filled with scrub brush or areas where there are forests that are thickly layered. Hunting Axis deer can be a challenge and that is what hunters love the most about pursuing the Axis deer at any time of the year. Axis deer are natural fighters and have been known to take on Bengal tigers in their native lands of Sri Lanka. Hunters like this type of spirit in the animals that they hunt on a regular basis, and the Axis deer is never one to disappoint anybody when they are on a live hunting party. Hunters might find antlers along the trail to spur them on with their quest, because Axis deer routinely shed their antlers at any time of the year. There is no set schedule for hunters to follow to help determine when the Axis deer antlers will be renewed, so hunters have no concrete evidence to follow to better judge when the Axis deer passed through the trail that they are following. Axis deer are predictable in other ways though because they have habits that hunters have learned that help them in hunting Axis deer throughout the year. Some hunters might be intimidated a bit when they learn that Axis deer have a habit of staying in large herds and rarely roam about on their own. When a hunter is faced with the large herds they will have to rely on their skill and daring with a rifle to bring one down properly and in a humane method. The Axis deer is a very social animal that is very smart and has a built-in alarm system that allows them to bellow and bark to other Axis deer if they are alarmed in any way. Hunters must work for the trophy that they are pursuing because Axis deer are not the feeble minded deer that some might be used to. Their sheer size gives Axis deer an advantage in the forests and many hunters love the pulse quickening action of bringing one of these mighty beast that are just about as big as elk down with one shot.
Spanish Goat • mark&june • flickr.com
Spanish and “Hawaiian Ibex” Goats Originally brought to the islands in the 1700’s by Capt. Vancouver, these goats exist in Hawaii’s more rugged terrain. There are two distinct horn types: flared Spanish style and the unique “Hawaiian ibex”. Being a “fugitive species,” large numbers are found in the vicinity of steep cliffs and lava fields. Goats have keen eyesight and careful stalks are necessary to bag your trophy. Trophy animals are considered anything over 22” length or spread.
Polynesian Boar • Rick Talley • flickr.com
Polynesian Boar arrived in Hawaii over 2,000 years ago with the first migrations of Polynesians on the islands. A descendant of the small Asiatic domestic pigs introduced by Polynesians in the early colonization period (400AD) and the larger European domestic pigs first introduced by Captain James Cook in 1778.
Axis Deer Axis Deer were introduced to Hawaii in 1867 as a gift to King Kamehameha. They produce beautiful trophy mounts and average 30-inch long antlers and will reach up to 38” main beams. The males of this big game animal are about 190 to 220 pounds and the females weigh in between 120 to 150 pounds. Their height is about thirty-six inches from the shoulder, not including their neck and head. They can be three feet in length although most are a little less than that. Their color is dark tan and has a stripe along its back that is normally blackish in color. Axis deer are much wider and taller than mainland Whitetails, Mule and Black Tail deer. Hunters are amazed at the keen senses of free range axis deer and mature bucks are sought after trophies.
Page 56 • Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
By Jim Rogers
Japanese Quail • Céili & Bowery • flickr.com
Game Bird Hunting Game Bird Hunting Hawaii offers some of the most unique, mixed bag, wild bird hunting found in the world. Although none are native, most are wild. There are over 14 species of Upland Game Birds for the Wingshooter to enjoy. Those include the Ring-neck Pheasant, Green Pheasant, Kalij Pheasant, Black Francolin, Erckels Francolin, California Quail, Gambil’s Quail, Japanese Quail, Chukar Partridge, Sand Grouse, Spotted Dove, Mourning Dove, Barred Dove, Rio Grande Turkey and more. So we find that the 50th state offers much more than sun, beaches, waves, and fishing. Hawaii offers the perfect opportunity to combine a family vacation with a hunt of a lifetime. It truly has some of the best hunting (and fishing) in the world. Offering big game hunts for seven mammals and fourteen game bird species/subspecies. Now, something to remember is Hawaii’s strict licensing requirements require advance planning. All too many nonresidents travel all that way only to be turned down at the license counter. So do your research and plan ahead. Aloha!
Considered one of the great adventure sports, deep sea fishing is a stark contrast to the more idyllic image of fishermen calmly awaiting a nibble while sitting in a simple wooden boat on a still lake. Deep sea fishing instead involves traveling beyond the wave barrier to the deeper ocean waters for the chance to catch larger aquatic game, such as tuna, dorado, marlin, or even sharks. In addition to requiring greater physical endurance, deep sea fishing requires a different mindset from mainland fishing. During your trip try and make it to Oahu, this may appeal to you as a chance to escape the boundaries of land terrain, explore a new sport, and enjoy the rise and fall of the ocean’s surface. Several deep sea fishing operators lead tours from the Island of Oahu:
Maggie Joe offers full day, 3/4 day, and half day tours departing from Ala Moana Boulevard Slip K. All gear and tackle are included, though guests are encouraged to provide their own drinks and snacks. In advance of setting sail, fishing enthusiasts are briefed on basic safety protocol and other key expectations to have during the expedition.
Boom Boom Sportsfishing
Based in Waianae Boat Harbor just fifteen minutes from Ko Olina, Boom Boom Sportsfishing expeditions travel to coastal ledges up to seven miles in depth, providing visitors access to some of the deepest fishing in Hawaii. Several fishing methods are used during trips, including live baiting, trolling, and surface jigging, and both private and shared charters are available for four to ten hours.
Black Francolin by Nirmala Sridhar flickr.com
Kuuloa Kai Hawaii
Departing from Haleiwa in northern Oahu, Kuuloa Kai Hawaii leads several deep sea fishing tours, including basic charter fishing, marlin fishing, and yellowfin tuna fishing tours. Each is designed to provide guests a focused opportunity to challenge some of the biggest ocean game, and the professional, experienced staff share tips and tricks during the process. Full day and half day tours are available for one to six fishing enthusiasts.
The term aikane means “friendly,” perhaps a reflection of the atmosphere created by the staff of Aikane Sportfishing. Tours are designed to accommodate beginners and experienced fishermen alike, and participants can keep what they catch. Tours can be either deep sea fishing charters or shallow water bottom fishing excursions depending on your interests. Regardless of your previous experience, there is a deep sea fishing excursion for you to enjoy during your stay in Oahu. If you want to escape the mainland and spend some time on the reflective waters, take advantage of one of these opportunities during your vacation, learn a new skill or practice an old one, and have an unforgettable day on the water.
Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 • Page 57
What makes a great hunting dog? Dogs, as with many things in life, can all too often be subject to fashion, and over a lifetime fashion can change a breed beyond recognition.
By Ken Devonald
Page 58 â€˘ Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
But this is not a new thing. I have just been reading my copy of ‘Dog Breaking’ by Hutchinson. In it he talks about an extremely bad scenting day in October 1838, with a cold dry wind blowing from the east. Three gentlemen, an Hon., a Baron and a Knight were shooting partridges over three ‘fashionable’ setters, which did not manage to set any partridges — in fact they flushed a great number ‘as though they were larks.’ However with a trusty old fashioned pointer, despite the badness of the scent, they still managed thirty-five brace. The old fashioned pointer was bred for working, with little attention paid to just how good she looked. In fact, she looks rather plump by today’s standards for dogs. And here we are more than 170 years later, still seeing the effects of fashion on a dog’s abilities. This can be seen in the spaniels, the labs, the retrievers and the HPRs where shows dictate the ‘standard’ that must be aimed for, and the less visible characteristics dictate the abilities that the animals have to perform in the field. There is a conflicting set of requirements here. To get a top quality dog whether in the show ring or the field requires a large number of dogs to choose from. Generalizing, if you want show quality then you breed from show quality, if you want brilliance in the field, then you breed from the best in the field. Show quality failures still make good pets, dogs with placid temperaments show better than those who are rearing to go and leave the handler running to catch up, and so the show dogs develop placid tendencies! But, (and this is my personal opinion, argue if you wish!) a springer or cocker from a working strain may not make the best of pets for a family that are new to dogs. I say this because our first two dogs were a Jack Russell Terrier and an English Springer Spaniel. The spaniel had so much drive that I didn’t know how to control, that the entire eight years we spent together I could not relax if she was off her lead. If a swallow swooped low she would be off. What is the answer to this conflict of interests? I suspect the truth of the matter is that those who value the dogs for their working abilities have to care less about standards and whether a dog has a pedigree and more about how the dog and its parents worked. The dual-purpose breeds, which basically are the breeds that have not yet separated into distinct types, such as the HPRs (Breeds which Hunt, Point and Retrieve), will undoubtedly change over the years, with scenting abilities and stamina being more important than shape. Happy Hunting!
Ken is a computer consultant with a keen interest in dog-training, especially training gundogs. He is also a keen (but lapsed) shooter and fisherman. Since he has recently taken employment after being a freelance writer for eighteen years, he finds he has some time on his hands, and has decided to create a website about his favorite subject, gundog training. Despite being told time after time that computer people make the worst possible trainers, he doesn’t really agree, believing anyone who likes spending time with a doting dog can train to any level they like. He intends this site to become a valuable resource for all gundog trainers whatever their history and standard, from brand new novice to the know-it, done-it expert from a professional background. You can visit his gundog training site at www. gundog-training.com.
Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 • Page 59
From the Loading Bench Ed Hammond www.nyatiinc.com
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Page 60 • Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
What is the most important part of any hunt, the gun, your ammo, a compass, maybe a cell phone, or is it something not on the hunting list? The answer is Practice, Practice, and Practice. That is the one detail that so many Hunters overlook for so many reasons one could only wonder. The Hunter saved for many years for his or her Cape Buffalo Hunt. The Hunter just bought a CZ .416 Rigby, his first really big bore rifle. All of his big game hunting, up to now, was done with his trusty .308 Winchester model 88. This fine rifle develops about 16 ft lbs of free recoil and the .416 Rigby comes in at a whopping 58 ft lbs, that’s almost four times the recoil of his sweet Winchester. Our hunter has been using this rifle for twenty five years and never a single hitch. Then the Hunter takes his or her new Darling to the range for the first time and starts to zero in. When the Hunter pulls the trigger for the first time, he realizes there is a brand new gaping gash just over his right eye and it will not stop bleeding. What happened? Our hunter just found out the hard way that recoil kicks like the dickens and now he is wondering what he is going to do with his Darling Monster. Mind you, he is not afraid, but unsure of what to do next. The Hunter doesn’t know it yet, but the next time he or she prepares to fire that rifle, his body’s muscles and nerve endings have a little surprise in store for him. Mr. Flinch is on deck and this bad boy is very difficult to control once the door is opened, so, never give it a chance to control your shooting. The best way to accomplish this is to control the excess recoil your body doesn’t like before it controls you. There are many ways to defeat recoil. The first time I saw a .505 Gibb fired, I could not figure out what on earth the shooter was trying to do. I didn’t really notice the size of the barrel at first when I started to walk over to see what was going on. So on my way there, he fired a 525 gr. Bullet at 2300 fps. Now that doesn’t sound too bad, in fact it is lethargic for most modern rifles, but that bullet is one large projectile at that speed. In a 10 lbs rifle it would generate 104 ft lbs of free recoil, that’s 5 times the normal recoil of a 30.06. The blast from 150grs of powder lit the end of the barrel up and startled the wits out of me. When I recovered my composure, I had to find out what he was doing with this flame thrower. It turns out that he was using two 25 lb bags of # 7 1/2 shot behind the stock to reduce the felt recoil and it did a splendid job of it. MidwestHuntFish.com
Caliber Bullet Wt
.416 Rigby 300
Powder gr. Gun wt. lbs. Recoil ft. lbs. Recoil Vel. Pdr Dens
By using the bags of shot in that manner, he effectively reduced the 104 lbs down to a mere 17 ft lbs of free recoil. I thought it shear genius on his part. This event occurred back in the early 70’s and made a lasting impression on me to this day. Now that is one way. Another way, today, is the Caldwell lead sled. Genius if ever there was. A third way, is one that I perfected about 7 years ago with extensive testing and trial and error at the beginning. On a fateful day at the end of 2007 at my test range, I started working on reduced velocity loadings for big bore dangerous game rifles. I was in an area that was never explored before. I was traveling down a path never taken before. Everything I tried was brand new. I had no guide lines to work with. At first I was working with cast bullets that I manufactured and with them I had a reference to work by, The Lyman Loading Manual. Then, I found the most versatile powder on the market today. From that point on, I was on my own. I didn’t know what could be done with just one powder from low recoil, low pressure loads, all the way up to intermediate loading and further still. It was like heaven to an experimenter like me. There was no limit on what I could do with that wonderful powder, Accurate 5744. The sky’s the limit with the versatility of this powder, it is so unbelievable. It can be used in calibers like the 22 Hornet, all the way up to 700 Nitro Express. Well, that’s enough background for now, down to taming the monster so it can be shot without any fear of bodily damage. The .416 Rigby is a large volume case, with plenty of room for powder for High Velocity loading. It works well with H4350,IMR 4350,RL-19. Since we will be slowing it down a bit, the powder called for here is the Accurate 5744 and that is the only powder we will be loading with. The primers for this application are standard large rifle primers. I work with Remington 9 1/2, they work great for me. The cases I use, most times, are the Hornady brand, it works great. The bullets that I use most of the time are Barnes, but as of late I have been unable to purchase Solids from anyone, anywhere. Since the powder density is so low, it is absolutely important to check case volume every round. The best way that I found to accomplish this is with a standalone digital scale. The Hornady GS1500 works fine for me. Now that we have a bunch of loaded rounds, we should start with the 400 gr. Solids at 1,300 fps. This is the perfect combination for 50 yd. informal shooting from the bench, just to see what it will do. After you find its point of aim, then you should move on to shooting with sticks and then some offhand shooting. Most African PH’s would like to know that you have around 300 rounds through your gun months before you show up at their camp. An 8 to 10 inch black bull, at this yardage, should be perfect for shooting the 300gr bullets at 2,000 fps. The recoil will be about the same as a 30.06. You should continue shooting till you feel confident to move onto the full house loads, handling and shooting until the rifle becomes one with you. Your PH will know that they can trust your shooting ability the first time they see you shoot. You can be certain of that. Till the next time, Practice is everything. MidwestHuntFish.com
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Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 • Page 61
By Robert Buchholz My wife doesn’t hunt. She enjoys going to the range with me and doing some plinking with the 22 every now and then, but she never really picked up the fever of the hunt. So, I was surprised the day my daughter asked me if she could go out with me and my son one day. You don’t typically associate hunting with women. But women hunters have been around since the beginning. Today they are more common than most people realize. They have their own websites and TV shows. They write articles for major magazines on hunting and even have their own TV shows. The most famous of course being Cindy Garrison. Now when my daughter asked me if she could go hunting with me, my first reaction was “Excellent.” Then I started to wonder about things like a rifle, a shotgun, clothing...What would I need to do differently with her than when I started out with my son. She is much smaller than my son. She is not as strong as my son. Will I be able to find what she needs to be able to hunt with us? Well the first thing I did was talk to my hunting friends about it. Their first reaction was a question. They wanted to know if that meant she was coming to deer camp this season. I obviously knew what was meant by that question. Our camp is like most others and what happens at deer camp, stays at deer camp. Nobody wanted to change their habits of speech or topics because she was around. After I assured them that she would not be joining our annual get together they decided it was an excellent idea. They however didn’t have any ideas to help me out because those of them that do have kids all have boys. So, they said just handle her like I did my son when he started to hunt. Hmmmmm, not a good idea.
My next step was to look out into the internet to find some information. I was very pleased to find that there was a lot of information and equipment designed just for women. From clothing to rifles, there was a lot of stuff that would make getting her ready very easy. Last year was the first year she went out. I took her to a stand I had set up overlooking a winter wheat field. We arrived a little late in the morning. I had some problems convincing her that smelling like skunk urine was a good thing. She was sitting not more than an hour on a Buddy Stand that I had put up the month prior when a nice doe walked out. She had her new .223 that I had purchased for her at GunBroker.com. So she took careful aim just like she learned at the range and harvested her first deer. I don’t know who had more fun on that trip, her or me. Watching her walk up to her first deer was more of a thrill for me than getting one of my own. When my son got his first deer a few years back it was exciting as well, but with my daughter it created a special bond between her and me that we never had besides the daddy/ daughter one. Due to her obligations this year at school we haven’t been able to go out together yet. But we will definitely be there for this year’s special antlerless weekend. I already have a stand set up for us in a place that will get her another one. I am looking forward to that weekend more that I am opening day. So, when your daughter asks you if she can go hunting with you next time, don’t shy away from it and make excuses. Instead you should grab the camera and get ready for some of the best memories of your life. There are two places that I recommend when it comes to finding those special items for women hunters. They are Bass Pro Shop and Cabela’s. These two locations have the largest selection at the most reasonable prices anywhere. Robert Buchholz is the admin and main author at www. okoutdoorsman.com. He started hunting at a very young age in the state of Wisconsin. Since then he has lived in several different states and countries taking his love of the outdoors along with him.
Page 62 • Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
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By Kara Wattunen
he sport of hunting and fishing are growing in their popularity every day. That thrill of seeing a big buck coming straight to your stand as you try and control the presence of “buck fever” or the elation that arrives when you pull that hog of a bass into the boat is something that cannot be replaced. Now it’s those reasons ethical outdoors men and women head out on the water and into the woods during the regulated seasons. However, with ethical comes the unethical, and they are more commonly known as poachers. Let’s face it people, poaching is a problem. It seems however that poaching gets swept under the rug unless it is a “world class” whitetail that could score in the record books or a ridiculously large fish harvest. Poaching can come in many forms. From out of season kills and catches, to not following limits, all of these are common practices for poachers around the United States. An organization in Minnesota however is making strides to bring poaching to a halt, and make known the actions of poachers who are caught in the state. T.I.P. or Turn In Poachers, Inc. of Minnesota puts the spotlight onto the violations that are being caught in the state. With the help of the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Conservation Officers and the State Patrol, TIPS is putting the efforts to stop poaching on the forefront. Turn In Poachers, Inc. is a private Minnesota 501(C)(3) non-profit organization that depends on dedicated members to keep it up and running. There are 6 different levels of membership that can actually be written off as a tax deduction due to their 501(C)(3) status. TIPS also plays an integral role in the education of public about poaching in the great state of Minnesota. One of their key teaching tools is the Wall Of Shame. The Wall of Shame is an amazing display of animals that were harvested illegally by hunters and recovered by law enforcement officials. This wall boasts anything from bear and deer, to fish and turkeys, all taken illegally. Another great thing TIPS makes know is the violations that take place in the state, posting full write ups of events on their website. Now what can we do to help organizations like TIPS and our fellow outdoor enthusiast to stop the illegal harvest of wild game? First off is to find the organization in your community that focuses on the prevention of poaching and save their number in your phone! Turn In Poachers has a toll free hotline to call when you suspect or see someone participating in poaching activities. This hotline also offers a reward if your “tip” leads to a poaching bust. Another great tool to help reduce poaching is to educate, educate, educate! Make sure you, and your hunting groups, know the correct dates, bag limits, and have the correct licenses for your outdoor adventure. Education goes further than just knowing your season dates and license information; it runs into the mentoring aspect of the outdoors. Being a mentor for younger hunters, and even hunters that are just new to the experience, can be a key aspect in creating a positive hunting heritage of ethical hunters. By passing on the ethical traditions, harvesting of animals, and enjoying the outdoors within the guidelines set by our states, we can start to decrease the number of illegal kills and increase the numbers of ethical outdoors enthusiast! If you know of any illegal poaching in your area, please do not hesitate to call your local law enforcement officials and report it. Most tips can be made, as an anonymous citizen as well so there is no pressure. If you are located in Minnesota you can call 1-800-6529093 or #TIP from your cell phone to report poaching activity. Below is a list of numbers to call in your area: • South Dakota Game and Fish TIP: 1-888-OVERBAG (683-7224) • North Dakota Report All Poachers (RAP): 1-800-472-2121 • Iowa TIP Program: 1-800-532-2020
Page 64 • Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
ITTLE RIVE Pheasant Hunts
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The Tribal Ranch offers lodging & meals, along with
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“In the old days the buffalo took care of our people, now it’s our turn to take care of the buffalo, so one day the buffalo will return again to their originality & give something back to the people of the Mandan, Hidasta & Arikara Tribes.” MidwestHuntFish.com
Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014 • Page 65
Hunting • Fishing • Lodging • Buy • Sell: Equipment & More NYATI AMMUNITION - The World’s Most Accurate Low Recoil Big Bore Precision & Practice Ammunition! Hand Crafted Ammunition Designed for the Discriminating Sportsman. We produce a quality range of low recoil, low chamber pressure and low velocity ammo in .375 H&H, .378 Wby Mag, .416 Rigby, .458 Win Mag, .458 Lott and .470 NE. Barnes Banded Solids are used exclusively in all these cartridges - 300 grainers for the .375’s, 400’s in the .416, 500’s in the .458’s and .470 NE. Muzzle velocities are in the 1100 to 1300 fps range. Check us out, we offer custom loading for most calibers. www.nyatiinc.com Caribou Lodge Outfitters Canada Manitoba Canada Caribou Lodge Outfitters Year Round Trophy Fishing Walleye, Northern Pike, Lake Trout, Black Bear Hunts Family Fun 1-877-472-4868 www.huntnfish.ca Marie Fritz Perry - Pastel & Oil Artist. Custom portraits last forever and portray more than a photograph. Tell me about your special dog... 507-301-8693 www.CanineCustomArt.com
Located off I-90, Exit 379, Last Call Lodge is only 20 min. from Sioux Falls airport and sits on the edge of the magic zone of thousands of acres of public and private land for hunting and fishing opportunities. Last Call is a quiet place to stay for the night and relax with friends and family. The perfect destination for groups of hunters, family reunions or business meetings. The lodge sleeps up to 12 people and has a large TV/Game Room. 605-940-0952. facebook.com/LastCallLodge
Dry Dock stocks many items to outfit almost any gun. Bipods * Shooting Sticks * Targets * Slings * Tactical Accessories * Handgun Safes * Reloading Supplies * Black Powder * Shooting Rests * Gun Cleaning Kits * Vexilars * Holsters * Body Armor * Knives * Binoculars * And Much More * Call 701-6522421 or go to www.drydocksports.com
“The Pheasant Capitol of the World” The Buffalo Butte Ranch is located in the heart of this area known as the “Golden Triangle”, a prime pheasant hunting area between Gregory, Winner and Chamberlain. Buffalo Butte Ranch is a 6,000 acre privately owned and operated pheasant farm which has been in our family for five generations. Go to www.buffalobutte.com or Call (800) 203-6678.
Browguard – Endorsed by Jim Shockey - Strap on a “Browguard” and you can forget about scope cuts and concentrate on your shot! “Browguard” is 100% American, hand-made, high tech closed-cell foam, and leather encased protection for shooters using a rifle scope. To contact us call: (509) 254-3313. www.browguard.com
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Fishbasket Camps is located 315 miles north of Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada on beautiful Mameigwess Lake, a pristine lake where anglers will enjoy unparalleled “Catch & Release” fishing for Walleye and Northern Pike.
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Page 66 • Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
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Page 68 • Midwest Hunting & Fishing - May-June 2014
Published on Jun 3, 2014