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There are several species of trout, including Rainbow Trout, Cut-throat, Brook Trout, and Lake Trout. Size: Cutthroat: up to 3 feet. Rainbow: 12-18”. Brook: 10-26”. Lifespan: 25+ years. Habitat: Trout are usually found in cool, clear streams and lakes. Rainbow Trout spend 23 years at sea before returning to freshwater to spawn. Range: Throughout the northern USA and Canada. Food: Insects, fish eggs, smaller fish, crust aceans. Behavior: Smaller trout are generally found in shallow, slow-moving runs of streams, while bigger ones prefer quiet, dark and deep pools.

Bait: Live baits include worms, leeches, and minnows. Fly fishing with wet or dry artificial lures is the best way to go. Fishing tips: While they can be caught with a normal rod and reel, fly fishing was specifically developed for trout fishing. Trout are wary of anglers so take your time and don’t rush into trying to catch them. If the water is still and clear, be careful not to cast a shadow on the water. From the shore, either stay low or stand in front of bushes, trees or a high bank. Don’t move around too much in the water—splashing or stirring up the bottom might spook them.

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POPULAR SPORT FISH TROUT

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Fly fishing is very popular form of fishing that involves catching fish using artificial lures (called “flies”) that resemble insects, small fish or even snails. Dry fly fishing uses lures that float on the surface of the water—allowing the angler to see everything as it happens. Wet fly fishing utilizes lures that fall beneath the surface, resembling insect hatchlings called nymphs. This is a bit more challenging since the action occurs below the water. The lures are

attached to the fly line by a piece of clear, monofilament leader that is almost invisible and splashes less. The thin end of the leader is called the tippet. In fly casting, the weight of the line itself carries the fly to the fish. Because the flies are so light (in order to float or stay suspended in the water), casting is more challenging than in traditional bait-casting where the weight of the live bait and sinkers does the work for you.

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FLYFISHING INTRODUCTION

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FRESHWATER FISH ANATOMY There are more than ber of indicators to try 1,000 species of fresh- to determine one type water fish in the United of fish from another. States and Canada. Fortunately, most popWith so many different ular sport fish can be types of fish, it can be easy to identify if you daunting to try and identify or know what to look for. Just like recognize many of them. any plant or animal, we need However, you can use a num- to understand what features

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over time. An excellent tool to obtain is a fish identification guide that provides pictures and descriptions of the major types of freshwater fish.

some fish have in common, and what the differences are. With a bit of research and practice, you will get better at identifying freshwater fish

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Size: Average 10-20 lbs., can grow up to 75 lbs in larger lochs in Scotland and Ireland. Lifespan: 5-15 years. Habitat: Look for Northern Pike hiding in underwater vegetation because they are ambush predators that lie in wait for their prey before striking suddenly. Range: Mainly in the northern states and central Canada. Food: Mainly smaller fish (including younger pike), frogs, insects, leeches, and even ducklings and small mammals. Behavior: Pike are extremely fast and agile hunters, fitting their sleek, predatorial appearance. Bait: Live bait is not

recommended as pike can be easily damaged when caught and may not survive back in the water. They are attracted to motion so whirling spinners and jerkbaits are good artificial lures to try. Because of their numerous and sharp teeth, use barbless hooks and carry a long set of pliers or forceps for removing hooks. Fishing tips: Look for pike: at stream or river mouths, along wild rice beds, among thick cabbage weed or other big leaf weeds, under lily pads, narrows between lakes, drop-offs close to thick shallow weeds, deep ridges, and/or shoals or rocky points.

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POPULAR SPORT FISH NORTHERN PIKE

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WHERE TO FISH LAKES that might provide shade for the fish on a hot day. A submerged log or rock could provide a shadow where a fish might rest on a bright day. Birds: Look for birds feeding on hatched flies near the surface; fish may also be feeding there. Drop-offs: Places where shallow water suddenly deepens are also good places to look for fish. Inlet/outlet: Every lake is Structures: Docks, piers, pilunique, but one of the best ings, dams all attract fish places to start looking is because there is usually an where a river or stream enters abundance of food, shelter and or exits the lake. Fish tend to shade there. Cover: Look for forage in those areas. Weed fish under cover—an beds: Insects and overhang or structure other prey will lay of some sort. Some their eggs among the fish will be there for plants so the fish protection while other, know to look there predatory fish will during the day when wait there to ambush the eggs are hatching. prey. Shade: Look for brush overhanging the lake

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FRESHWATER FISHING LIVE BAIT

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Some fish will go after any- very good for catching thing that moves while oth- striped bass and largeers are very picky eaters. mouth bass. Earthworms/nightcrawlers: Crickets/Grasshoppers: Almost all fish will hit some Good bait for panfish such kind of earthworm. as sunfish. Other livebait options: Catalpa worms, crayfish, frogs, grub worms, hellgrammites, leeches, mealworms, salamanders, wasp larShad: These fresh- vae, wax worms. water baitfish are

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Minnows: Many kinds of fish eat smaller fish; smaller minnows attract crappie while bigger ones attract largemouth bass.

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Although many anglers practice catch-and-release fishing, fish that are hooked too deeply or mishandled during the dehooking process sometimes do not survive to be caught again. The best thing you can do is to fish with barbless hooks or to use pliers to knock down the barbs on your hooks. Also try to keep the fish out of the water for as short a time as possible. To remove a barbed hook, use needle-nose pliers to remove the

hook. Grasp the hook by the stem and, while holding the fish in the water, twist and pull gently, backing the hook out the way it came in. Don't ever wiggle the hook or pull with too much force if it's snagged. If the fish is gut-hooked or the hook is too deep in the throat, cut the hook and leave it in there. Many times the hook will simply dissolve and get spit out. The fish has a better chance than if you struggle to free the hook.

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HOW TO REMOVE A HOOK FROM A FISH

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GREAT RECIPES CAJUN FRIED BASS

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1/2 cup Bisquick 1/4 cup milk 1 egg 1 cup cornmeal 2 tsp Cajun seasoning 1.4 tsp salt 1 1/2 lb bass fillets oil for frying

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Whisk together the Bisquick, milk and egg in a medium bowl. Mix the cornmeal, cajun seasoning and salt in shallow dish. Dip the fillets into the wet batter first, then dredge in the cornmeal mixture. Fry the fillets in hot oil until golden-brown, turning once. Drain on paper towels and serve. Ranch dressing makes a great dipping sauce.

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Spin Casting Reels - Also known as a closed-face reel, are the best choice for beginning fishermen due to their ease of use. Spinning Reels - Most commonly used in freshwater fishing. Also known as an open-faced reel, they come in a variety of sizes and can be used for large range of freshwater fish species. The spool of a spinning reel remains stationary while the line is wrapped or unwrapped by the bale arm when the handle is turned. Bait Casting Reels - Sit on top the fishing rod and come in a wide variety of sizes. They can be used to catch fish

ranging in size from a pound to big, powerful fish that weigh hundreds of pounds. Baitcasting reels are are best used with heavier lures.These reels may also be used by freshwater fishing experts who like it for increased precision and faster reeling. Most modern bait casting reels have a clutch system that you can set at a specific tension, which allows a hooked fish to take the line when it is active. Fly Reels - These specialized reels ideal for casting flies. Similar to fly rods, they range in size based on the type of fish you are hoping to catch.

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FRESHWATER FISHING EQUIPMENT - REELS

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Pronounced "craw-pea," crappie are popular among sportfishers and for eating. Black and White Crappie are sister species that are relatives of the Black Bass family. Size: Up to 6 lbs. Lifespan: 7+ years. Habitat: Similar to bass: often found in ponds, lakes and rivers. Range: All of the lower 48 states and the Great Lakes area of Canada. Food: Insects, small baitfish (especially minnows), worms, maggots and crustaceans. Behavior: Crappie tend to stay in schools. They become more active as the water warms,

so the spring is a good time to fish. Bait: Crappie can see colors well so use colorful lures. Fishing tips: Crappie love docks, submerged trees and brush, underwater weeds, rocks and drop-offs, and will often gather in large schools in and around structures. Try areas with heavy cover first. Crappie are normally found in schools, so once you catch one, focus on that spot until the bite stops. Just before spawning, they become very active, feeding voraciously in shallow water, which makes them popular among fly fishers.

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POPULAR SPORT FISH CRAPPIE-WHITE & BLACK

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♠ 1. Put line through hook or swivel eye 2. Wrap tag end of line around main line 5 to 7 times 3. Put tag end of line through the loop in the line between the wraps and the hook eye 4. Bring tag end of line back through loop made by the last action 5. Moisten and pull the knot tight 6. Cut off the tag end of the line

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FISHING KNOTS IMPROVED CLINCH KNOT

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Start with the belly of the fish toward you and the head to the left. Take your knife and make a cut behind the pectoral (side) fin into the fish up to the spine (halfway through the body). Then, turn the knife and cut parallel to the backbone right through the end of the tail. Set aside that fillet, turn the fish over and do the same thing on the other side. Place the first fillet skin side up with the top of the fillet to the right. Flatten the ribs

to the cutting board with your hand. Slide your knife between the rib cage and the meat. Apply pressure down on your knife as you cut along the rib cage. Next, turn the fillet skin down with the tail closest to you. Begin a cut at the tail to remove the meat from the skin in one piece. Do the same for the second fillet. Finally, cut along the outside of the Y bones, then cut along the center line. Remove this piece of meat.

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HOW TO FILLET A WALLEYE

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Be stealthy on the water and on the shore. Everyone seems to know that it’s important to be quiet while fishing in a boat or a float tube, but many anglers don’t realize that it is just important to be quiet when fishing from the shore. Use a dip net to lift a hooked fish out of the water once you have reeled it in to the boat or shoreline. Too many fish have been lost when a line breaks or a hook comes loose at the last moment. Fishing in the wind: Keep your line low when casting so that it

will cut through the wind rather than get caught by a gust. Try more of a side-arm motion. Keep your finger on the line: This will give you extra sensitivity to notice when a fish brushes the lure or bait. Sharpen your hooks: A dull, blunt hook might bounce off a fish’s tough lip, but a sharp one has a better chance of sliding right in the first time. Don’t wear bright colors: The fish will notice your every movement and will be too spooked to eat.

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GREAT FISHING TIPS

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Walleye are are popular fish that are exciting to catch and delicious to eat. The name “walleye” comes from the cloudy, lightreflecting look of their eyes, which gives them an ability to see well in dark or turbid water conditions. Size: Up to about 31” and 20 lbs. Lifespan: 25+ years. Habitat: Darker waters, often deeper parts of lakes. Range: Northern USA and most of Canada—the walleye is the state fish of Minnesota and South Dakota, and Saskatchewan’s provincial fish. Food: Smaller fish such as yellow or white perch, baby bass, alewives and whitefish, as well as baitfish such as smelt, shad and min-

nows; also snails, leeches, worms and nightcrawlers. Behavior: Walleye will become more active just as the sun is setting or even when dark clouds roll in. In turbid water, they will feed all day, using their eyesight advantage to catch unsuspecting prey. Bait: Walleye prefer live bait over lures, because they like to watch the bait move for a while before striking. Try worms, minnows or leeches. Fishing tips: Because they feed actively all winter, they are also a popular icefishing catch. It turns out that they can see orange the best of all colors consider using an orange lure to catch their attention.

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POPULAR SPORT FISH WALLEYE

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FLYFISHING FLIES and midges, and are used mainly for trout. Terrestrial flies imitate ants, beetles, spiders, caterpillars, crickets, grasshoppers, and other insects that live on the land and sometimes fall into the water. Bugs include poppers, divers, and sliders. Twitch these flies forward little by little to disturb the water and attract fish. They imitate large insects, frogs, or mice. Nymphs imitate Flies are are often intricately immature insects that live designed, made from both nat- underwater. Nymphs are a big ural and artificial materials, part of many fishes’ diets, including: feathers, fur, wire, including trout, bass, and panand hair. They are either attrac- fish. Wet Flies are made of tors or deceivers. Attractors are materials that sink, so they look usually brightly colored flies like drowned insects or baitfish. that move a lot, arousing Streamers are attractive aggressive feeding to larger predator fish behavior in a curious such as pike, muskies, fish. Deceivers are large trout, and bass designed to imitate because they look like insects or bait fish that baitfish. Retrieve these specific fish like to eat. flies with a jerking Dry flies imitate adult motion to make them insects such as mayflies, mimic swimming fish. caddis flies, stone flies,

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· Use a lifejacket when you are on the water! · Camera/flashlight & batteries · Rain suit/thermals/outer jacket, socks · Sunglasses, sunscreen, lip balm & hat · Water, food & snacks · Seasick medication · Multi-tool/knife · Map/GPS/compass/whistle · Fishing gear, net & bait · Cooler & ice for storing fish · Matches, flint, striker & candle · Cell phone · First aid kit · Fishing license!

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BOATING CHECKLIST

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Smallmouth bass are distinguished from their larger cousins by vertical stripes, a spiny front dorsal fin, and a shorter upper jaw line that does not extend past its eye. Size: Generally 2-6 lbs. Lifespan: 7-18 years. Habitat: Clearer water, especially streams, rivers, lakes and reservoirs. Range: Throughout the temperate waters of North America. Food: Mainly crayfish and small baitfish (darters, minnows, yellow perch, sunfishes, and others). Behavior:Smallmouth

bass are well known for jumping clear into the air just after they hit your lure or bait. They are visual predators that work in schools. Bait: Crayfish, nightcrawlers, minnows. Fishing tips: Look for them in cool, clear waters near rocks and sandy/gravel bottoms. Try casting out a big worm or live minnow and letting it slowly sink. Let the bass run with it for 10 seconds before setting the hook. You can also use the same technique with a live minnow. May and June are the most productive months.

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POPULAR SPORT FISH SMALLMOUTH BASS

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Slow and deep: Avoid fast, shallow water which will hold few fish. Slow-moving areas might be a good option since fish can rest there without expending a lot of energy. Weed beds: These can be a good spot to look since they provide camouflage for the fish, as well as an abundance of food. Rocks & islands: Look

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in the lee of an island or rock since fish can hold position there with little effort. Rocky areas also create turbulence which adds oxygen to the water. Drop-offs: Deep water drop-offs often hold an abundance of fish. River bends: Look on the outside of edge of a bend where faster water will carry food. Fish will follow. Merging currents: Fish will congregate where two streams or rivers meet as there is usually twice as much food. Undercuts: These occur where the current has cut out a cave-like hole in earth or rock along the shore, creating the perfect hiding spot for fish.

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WHERE TO FISH STREAMS

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Lures are artificial versions of baitfish designed to attract a predatory fish that you want to catch. They come in a wide variety of styles and colors, and are designed to work at different depths and move through the water in certain ways. By working the line in various ways you can impart life to them, making them move in ways that will attract the fish you seek. Types of artificial bait include: hard plugs, soft plastic baits, and

spinners that turn as they move through the water. There are also top-water baits such as chuggers and poppers that gurgle and pop on the surface of the water in a way that (hopefully) attracts fish. Spoons are probably the oldest artificial lures—they wobble as you reel them, emulating a minnow. Jigs are weighted lures that are decorated with hair or rubber skirts that entice fish like bass as they fall through the water.

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FRESHWATER FISHING EQUIPMENT - LURES

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It happens to everyone, even the most seasoned anglers. At some point you will get a hook caught in your skin. Yanking it out, especially if it has a barbed tip, may be painful and could cause more damage to the area, but fear not, there is a usually a safe way to remove a hook from skin—painlessly. The idea is to pull it out in the same direction it

came in. First, using strong line, make a loop about 10cm (6") long, pass it over the eye of the hook, and then up to the top of the bend of the hook. Push firmly down on the eye of the hook so it touches the skin. Finally, make a sudden, strong yank on the line loop, pulling up and away from the hook-eye. The hook should come out the way it went in.

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HOW TO REMOVE A HOOK FROM A HUMAN

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1 large trout fillet 1 tbsp of sea salt 1 bay leaf Fresh ground pepper corn 1 tsp garlic powder

1 tsp onion powder 1 tsp dried rosemary Olive oil 1 tbsp honey

Mix all the ingredients but the oil and honey in a bowl. Brush the trout with the olive oil and sprinkle the fish with the ground herbs. Drizzle the honey on top of the

fish. Place the lake trout on the plank and cook on a hot BBQ. The fish is done when it is flaky. Serve with lemon wedge.

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GREAT RECIPES PLANK GRILLED TROUT

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Modern hooks are usually made from stainless steel or high-grade carbon steel to avoid oxidation in water. Hook sizes are denoted by a number system from size 30 (the smallest) up to size 1. Hooks are generally shaped like a J, with slight variations. They can be barbed or barbless - some

catch-and-release fisheries require barbless hooks because they are easier on the fish. Hooks are often connected to lures, especially in flyfishing, but they may also be used with live bait, depending on the type of fish you hope to catch.

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FRESHWATER FISHING EQUIPMENT - HOOKS

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Bluegill sunfish are a species of panfish also known as bream. Size: Usually 4-12 inches, up to 16” and 4 lbs. maximum. Lifespan: 5-8+ years. Habitat: Shallow waters of lakes and ponds, along with slow-moving areas of streams and small rivers. Range: Throughout the U.S. east of the Rocky Mountains, and warmer lakes in Ontario and Quebec. Food: Mainly insect larvae (mayflies, caddis flies, and dragonflies); sometimes crayfish, leeches, snails and small fish. Behavior: Bluegills are usually found in schools of

10 to 20 fish. Bait: Bluegill are attracted to vibrant colors like orange, yellow, green, or red, mainly at dawn or dusk. Live baits include: earthworms, crickets/grasshoppers, white bread, cheese, or a corn kernel. Fishing tips: Bluegill prefer water with many aquatic plants, and hide within fallen logs or water weeds. They can often be found around weed beds, where they search for food or spawn. Look for them near the surface. Peak feeding times are generally the morning and evening, but they eat throughout daylight hours.

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POPULAR SPORT FISH BLUEGILL SUNFISH

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FISHING KNOTS BLOOD KNOT

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1. Overlap the ends of the two lines you are joining together. 2. Twist one around the other at least five turns and then bring the end back between the two in the loop formed by the twist. 3. Do the same with the end of the other line, going in the opposite direction; be sure to make the same number of turns with the second line as you made with the first line. 4. Slowly pull the two lines in opposite directions and tighten the knot; watch to make sure the wraps slide together without overlapping each other. 5. Pull it tight and clip the tag ends close to the knot.

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HOW TO FILLET A BASS

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· Place the bass on the cutting board lengthwise with its dorsal side facing away from you. Remove the scales by gently scraping from the tail to the head. Wash the scales away with cold water. · Slice open the largemouth bass from its gill juncture to its rectum. Remove the organs, ensuring the entire cavity is clean. Wash out any remaining blood or tissue. · Make another incision at the very back of the head, and then follow the spine around the dorsal fin all the way to the tail. · Start at the back of the head again, and cut downward around the pectoral fin to the beginning of the first incision. · Slide the knife from the pectoral fin all the way to the tail, keeping the tip of the knife right against the fish's spine. Do not cut through the tail. · Flip the entire section you have just created away from the head and toward the tail. · Separate the meat from the skin by sliding the fillet knife laterally down the tail juncture. You will now be left with the fillet.

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FISHING WISDOM

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· Give a man a fish, and you of fishing success. have given him a meal. · Every year or so a new Teach him to fish, and you fishing gimmick hits the have given him a lifetime market…it appears that of meals. anglers are every bit as · Ninety percent of all fishing gullible as dieters. knowledge is local knowl- · When dense fog covers the edge. water, don’t bother trying · Avoid a disappointing fishto fish—your chances of ing vacation by hiring a catching a fish are slim at guide for at least a best. Wait until the day or two. Valuable fog clears first. vacation time can be · Rule for fighting wasted trying to sort big fish - When it out local conditions pulls, you don’t. and information on When it doesn’t your own. A local pull, you do. guide will greatly increase your chances

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Drop-offs, where the water turns from shallow to deep, are a great place to look—fish tend to congregate and look for food in this area. Cast close to the shoreline for more bites. Research the region you will be fishing in to find out what kinds of fish live there and the things they like. Clean your hands. Fish actually have a very sensitive sense of smell—they might not bite if the bait smells like cigarette smoke or bug spray. Match the hatch when

♣ fly fishing. Insect hatching time can make for great fishing, but make sure your flies “match the hatch” and resemble the bugs that are hatching in the area. Phases of the moon. Walleye feed more from the day before to the day after each new or full moon. They also will eat more at the rise and set of the sun and moon each day. In bright sunlight, don’t look for trout near the surface. Their eyes are too sensitive so they will stay deeper in the water to avoid the brightness

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GREAT FISHING TIPS

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you can, and make sure you leave the skin on the fillet. Slide your filleting knife under the bones and cut under the ribs trying not to cut away any meat while you do it.

To remove the Y-bones, make a cut above them and then cut down until you feel the bones. Cut following the curve of the bones, then move to the center line of the fillet and cut at a 45-degree angle. Cut

upwards until you feel the Y-bones. Work your knife along the bones. Gently pull the Y-bones away from the flesh, using your knife to free them if need be. Remove the skin from the fillet.

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With the fish on its side cut on a 45-degree angle under the front side fin to the “neck.” Turn your knife and cut along the spine all the way to the tail. Stay as close to the backbone as

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HOW TO FILLET A NORTHERN PIKE

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♣ 1. Double line for last 12 inches 2. Put double line through hook eye or swivel eye 3. Loosely tie overhand knot in doubled line above hook or swivel 4. Pass hook or swivel back through the loop in the end of the line 5. Pull the knot tight 6. Cut off the tag ends of the line

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FISHING KNOTS PALOMAR KNOT

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Most catfish have cat-like whiskers called barbels around their mouths which hold tastebuds used to search for food in murky water. Most species also have a row of spines which can be locked in an upward position for defensive purposes—some even deliver a poisonous sting. Size: Flatheads: 25-50 lbs. Blue catfish: up to 125 lbs. Channel catfish: 15 lbs. Bullheads: 2-3 lbs. Lifespan: 11-12 years. Habitat: All bodies of fresh water— streams, rivers, ponds, lakes, and reservoirs. Range: Throughout the U.S. and southern Canada. Food: Almost anything—live and dead fish and smaller

organisms that live at the bottom of lakes and streams. Behavior: Catfish congregate in warm, quiet areas away from strong currents. They will be found near dark holes and deep pools, lakeshores, undercut banks, rock ledges, weedy areas, log jams, and beaver dams. Bait: Catfish are attracted to strong smells. They love worms, shrimp, prawns, even home-made baits like peanut butter and corn. Fishing tips: Make sure your bait is near the bottom. Make sure your hooks are sharp, and leave the barb exposed beyond the bait. Look for catfish at dawn or dusk.

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POPULAR SPORT FISH CATFISH

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There are several kinds of fishing rods available for the freshwater fisher. Rods all come in slow, medium or fast action, depending on the skill level of the user. Ledger rods (11-13 ft) are suitable for rivers or lakes and are designed to have highly sensitive “quivertips” that show the slightest movement of the line. Float rods (13-15 ft.) are also very sensitive but are a little more sturdy, allowing the angler to land bigger

♣ fish. Spinning rods (7-9 ft.) offer the flexibility needed for casting a wide variety of artificial lures Boat rods are shorter for use in a smaller space, as well as for lifting heavier species from under the boat. Fly-fishing rods (10-14 ft) range from small fly rods meant for casting tiny flies on small streams up to full-sized salmon rods that can land big fish on fastflowing rivers.

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FRESHWATER FISHING EQUIPMENT - RODS

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Cilantro Sun Dried Tomato Hollandaise Sauce: Simmer two sun dried tomato halves until they become tender. Add finely minced sun dried tomatoes to the previously made hollandaise sauce. Add about 10 to 12 minced cilantro leaves to the hollandaise. Stir the ingredients together. Keep sauce on very low heat until Walleye is cooked. Grilled Walleye: Prepare two 8 ounce walleye filets, and brush with unsalted butter. Season the filets with sea salt and black pepper. Heat griddle medium-high heat, and brush lightly with oil. Place the wall-

♣ eye filets on the griddle with the meat side down and the skin side up. Grill the walleye filets for about a minute. Flip the walleye filets over and grill the skin side. You should grill both sides of each filet twice for a minute or so until fully cooked. Assemble on plate: Place purple potato halves and green beans on the center of a plate. Place the walleye filets criss-cross on top of the vegetables. Generously spoon the cilantro sun dried tomato hollandaise over the grilled walleye. Garnish the hollandaise sauce with a couple of cilantro leaves.

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GREAT RECIPES GRILLED WALLEYE WITH CILANTRO SUN DRIED HOLLANDAISE

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The less time spent looking for a specific lure, bob, weight or hook, the more time you will actually be fishing. Label all your tackle boxes. Then it’s easy to see what you need to bring or not to bring with you on a specific fishing trip, and when you’re actually fishing, you can quickly find that one perfect bait you know will catch the fish that are lurking in the water. Need a fresh idea? When you’re not sure what to use—just looking at all the names might give

♣ you an idea of what will work. Size matters. The size and function of your tackle box will depend on what fish species you’re targeting. Larger sport fish like muskie and northern pike require large lures, while panfish anglers need a smaller box to hold terminal tackle and smaller lures. Where? The other consideration is where you fish; a drawer type or hanging box is best suited for a boat, while a softsided carry-all is better for mobile shoreline fishing or fly-in trips.

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FRESHWATER FISHING EQUIPMENT TACKLE

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Sinkers are used to get your hook down into the water. Several styles are made for various fishing methods and you can buy sinkers weighed in tenths of an ounce to pounds. They attach to your line in several different ways and they have many different shapes. Bell sinker: For fishing below the hook and dragging on the bottom.

Bullet Weight sinker: For worm fishing for bass. Egg sinker: For fishing in current and deep water. Pyramid sinker: Designed to dig into soft bottoms of sand or mud to help hold a bait in place in current. Split Shot sinker: A soft lead weight with a gap which you pinch tight over your fishing line to hold it in place.

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FRESHWATER FISHING EQUIPMENT - SINKERS

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WHEN TO FISH

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The best time to fish is when When the barometric presfish are more active and more sure falls, the fish might be active, but generally are not likely to be eating: · One hour before or after feeding. sunrise and sunset can be · Fish activity varies with the particularly good. These phases of the moon. For times are referred to as the example, fish are more “morning rise” and the active when the moon is new than during “evening rise.” · Consider the weath- other phases. er. Keep an eye on · Sometimes fish will the barometer. When become active when the air pressure is a heavy bank of either steady or ris- clouds roll in since ing, fish tend to be the darkness mimics more active and feed the sunset. more.

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Size: Average 5-36 lbs., can grow up to 70 lbs and 6 feet in length. Lifespan: 10+ years. Habitat: Clear waters where they can lurk along weed edges, rock outcrops or other structures. Range: Northeastern USA and Canada, lakes and rivers in Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan, extending through the Great Lakes region, the northern Mississippi and the St. Lawrence River basin. Food: Anything they can fit in their mouth: smaller fish, crayfish, frogs, snakes, mice and other small mammals. Behavior: Muskies are larger cousins of the

♣ Northern Pike and Pickerel. Long and sleek, they are predators who lurk under cover until exploding after their prey. Bait: For catch-and-release use lures rather than live bait as they tend to swallow the bait whole, and most will not survive the hook extraction. They do not tend to swallow artificial lures, and they will hit almost any size lure. Fishing tips: Troll for muskie at 4-6 mph. If you have two or three people trolling, try using the same lure at the same distance from the boat. This looks like a school of fish, which will attract Muskies.

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POPULAR SPORT FISH MUSKELLUNGE (MUSKIE)

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Action - measure of rod performance ranging from slow to fast Baitcasting - fishing with a revolving-spool reel and baitcasting rod, with the reel mounted on the top side of the rod Baitfish - small fish such as shad, herring or minnows that are eaten by the bigger fish you want to catch Barb - a sharp projection on a fishing hook that holds a hooked fish

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Crankbait/Cranks hard plastic or wooden lures that dive when retrieved through the water Dabbing - working a lure up and down in the same spot a dozen or more times Dry Fly - a fly which floats on the surface of the water Lunker - slang for a very large fish Panfish - fish that generally do not grow larger than a cooking pan Rig - a general term for specially prepared terminal tackle Spin-casting - fishing with a fixed spool enclosed in a nose cone so the line leaving the reel comes out straight Terminal Tackle - the combination of hooks, lures, bait, weights, etc. at the end of your line Trolling - towing a lure or several lures behind a boat Wet Fly - a fly fished underwater

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FRESHWATER FISHING GLOSSARY

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FLYFISHING BACK & FORWARD CAST

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make sure there are no tangles in the line. · Bring the rod tip back in a swift, steady motion, stoping when the rod tip is pointing up and behind you. · Watch your back cast until th line unfurls. · Just before the line Use this cast when you straightens out entirely, have plenty of open area bring the rod forward behind you and when you again. need to move your fly fur- The ideal cast should have ther out onto the water. the line tight at all times Practice this cast on land. and the line should form Tie a piece of bright yarn on tight loops at the end of to the end of the tip- the back and pet so you can see it forward casts. The unfurl. line should remain · Pull out about three horizontal to the rod-lengths of line. ground at all times. Hold the rod out in Problems arise usufront of you in your ally because of timdominant hand and ing.

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Size: Average 1-6 lbs., can grow up to 22 lbs and 21” in length. Lifespan: 15 years. Habitat: They thrive in clear, warm waters with overgrown banks or extensive reed beds. Range: Throughout USA and southern Canada. Food: Mainly smaller fish, frogs and crayfish. Behavior: Largemouth bass are renowned for the energetic fight they put up when hooked, often leaping out of the water in an effort to escape. They are very aggressive fish, known for striking at anything they believe they might be able to eat—even small birds, rodents and baby alliga-

tors. Bait: Natural baits including worms, minnows, leeches; lures including crank bait, spinner bait, jigs, plastic worms, jigging spoons and buzz bait. Fishing tips: Punch a weighted lure through floating vegetation where bass will be holding in the thickest cover possible to hide from any potential predators and prey. In shallow clear water they can detect color, especially red. In one study red and white lures caught 3 times as many largemouths as any other color. In muddy, stained or deeper water use brightly colored lures with the most flash and vibration.

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POPULAR SPORT FISH LARGEMOUTH BASS

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FISHING WISDOM

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· Ask the right question. When new strike zones if your two anglers meet, the usual favorite spot isn’t getting question is: “What are you bites. getting them on?” Anglers tend to think in terms of a · Join a fishing club. You can magical lure or bait. The only learn so much on your more important question is: own and from books or the “How are you fishing with internet. You’ll meet new friends, some with far more that lure or bait?” experience and great advice. · The same spot trap. The spot where you · Be impatient. Begincaught fish a week ners often believe before, or even a day the myth of patience, or two earlier, may but many great not be a good loca- anglers are actually tion the next time impatient. If they out. Fish move about aren’t catching fish, often, and so you they try something should also seek out different.

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then wash the fish in cold water. With the fish in the water use a spoon or your finger or thumb to rub away the blood line running along the backbone.

With the gutted trout on its back, insert the knife behind the ribs along the base of the backbone. Gently cut as close to the ribs as possible all the way back to the tail. Repeat the removal of the ribs on the other side. Next, cut down and in toward the backbone along the

entire length of both sides of the fish. You should hear the sound of small pin bones being cut. Remove the frame of the trout, leaving two fillets. You can remove any small pin bones with your knife or pliers. They are usually soft enough to eat when cooked.

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Cut the fish gently along the belly from the anus to the throat. Remove the head by cutting into the soft tissue between the gills and the collarbone. Pull the entrails out and

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HOW TO FILLET A TROUT

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1. Hold the hook or plug in one hand and pass the end of the line through the eye of it. 2. Run the tag end along the main line for about two inches then loop the tag end back to the eye of the hook. 3. Start wrapping the tag end around the double line inside the loop formed when you bring it back to the hook eye. 4. Wrap it six times; then pull the tag end tight. 5. Wet the knot and pull it down tight against the eye of the hook and firmly pull on it to make sure it's snug.

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FISHING KNOTS UNI KNOT

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Striped bass are very aggressive, hard-fighting fish that make them exciting catches. They are easily identified by the 6 to 9 horizontal stripes running along the sides of their bodies. Size: Generally 5 lbs (2 feet) is average, but up to 50 lbs (4 feet) is not rare. Lifespan: 30 years. Habitat: Striped bass are saltwater fish that spawn in freshwater rivers, although some populations are landlocked in lakes as well. Range: Eastern U.S.A. Food: A wide variety of prey fish, as well as lobsters, crabs of various kinds, shrimps, worms, squid, soft

clams and small mussels. Behavior: Entire schools of striped bass tend to eat one type of food at a time, gorging on it and ignoring everything else, then taking a break before gorging on that same food again and again. Bait: Sandworms are failproof. Also, try sardine, anchovy, threadfin shad, blood worms, or herring. Fishing tips: From the shore, find a spot near an estuary and cast into the river or a spot where the shoreline is rocky. Stripers are night feeders so go out just before sunset, at night, or during the early morning.

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POPULAR SPORT FISH STRIPED BASS

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Fishing line comes in three types: monofilament, braided and fly lines. Monofilament lines have an inherent stretching capacity which allows some shockabsorbency for landing fish, while braided lines have a higher strength-toweight ratio, which allows thinner, lighter lines to be used to cut through winds and tides. Fly lines have an insert line with a coating that either allows it to float

♥ or to sink at specific speeds. All lines come in various test strengths. Generally, in freshwater fishing you will use a mainline that makes up the majority of the line on your reel, along with a leader (or shockleader) tied to it and a short length called a trace (or hooklength) that is tied to the hook. With fly lines, the hook must be attached directly to the leader.

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FRESHWATER FISHING EQUIPMENT - LINES

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Heat a large cast-iron skillet on medium heat. Mix melted butter and lemon juice in a small bowl. In another small bowl, combine salt, paprika, thyme, pepper, garlic powder and red pepper flakes. Brush fillets on both sides with butter mixture and sprinkle evenly with seasoning mix.

♥ 1 teaspoon garlic powder 1 tablespoon dried thyme 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes 1 teaspoon salt 1/3 cup dry white wine Place fillets, skin side up in pan cook on both sides until fish flakes easily with a fork. Remove catfish from skillet and hold warm. Pour wine and any remaining butter mixture into pan. Bring to a boil and spoon over catfish. Serve with lemon wedges.

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2 pounds catfish fillets 1 teaspoon black pepper 1/3 cup melted butter 1 teaspoon paprika 2 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice

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GREAT RECIPES BLACKENED CATFISH

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Ice fishing is a popular sport in the northern United States and Canada. It takes place on frozen lakes where the fisher cuts a hole in the ice and fishes using lures or bait. A hand- or powered auger is the best way to cut the hole but an axe will also do in a pinch. Sometimes, ice fishers sit in portable huts with warmers in them. Although you can

fish at any time during the day, dawn or dusk are generally the best times to catch fish. It also pays to move around, cutting a new hole in the ice when one dries up. After all, fish do not tend to stay in one place for very long. You wouldn’t fish the same spot in the spring, summer or fall if the fish aren’t biting, would you?

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ICE FISHING

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Floats are used to suspend bait either at the surface, a specific depth below the surface, or right at the bottom. The weight of the bait or lure below keeps them upright with the brightly coloured tip showing above the water. A float also helps visually to tell you when a fish is biting because you will see it twitch, shoot under the water

or come up and lie on the surface. Floats were traditionally made of cork, but now they are most often plastic or styrofoam. Another name for a float is bobber, since that is what they do as they sit on the water. An easy way to teach kids to fish is to just have them watch the bobber to see when they get a nibble.

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FRESHWATER FISHING EQUIPMENT - FLOATS

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Canoes/Kayaks: Canoes and kayaks are good for getting into tight places. They can also be carried to places that are inaccessible by road but they are not very stable to fish from. Bass boats: One-man bass boats are good for small bodies of water. Bigger two-man bass boats are stable and can handle rougher water, but aren't suitable for bigger lakes. Jon boats: Jon boats are stable and work well in smaller bodies of water, but they don't handle big waves very well. They can be carried, but not as easily as a

♥ canoe. Open-water cruisers: Big openwater cruisers are suitable for big lakes, but are expensive to buy and maintain. River drift boats: River drift boats are big and heavy and must be carried in by vehicle, but they handle big rivers well. They're also very stable fishing platforms. V-hull fishing boats: V-hull fishing boats are not as stable as flatbottomed boats like bass and jon boats, but they are good for fishing in waves and work well in rivers.

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FRESHWATER FISHING BOAT TYPES

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Sturgeon are some of the oldest fish in existence, dating back 200 million years in the fossil record. Size: 6-18 feet in length, weighing hundreds of pounds. Lifespan: More than 100 years. Habitat: Rivers and lakes along the ocean coasts, feeding in estuaries and river deltas, and spawning upstream on both coasts of North America. Food: They are bottom-feeders that will eat almost anything. Behavior: Sturgeons put up a strong fight, sometimes rising out of the water and “walk-

♥ ing” on their tails like a marlin in the ocean. Bait: Shad, eel, squid, sand shrimp, herring, anchovies and smelt. Fishing tips: Make sure the bait is right at the bottom because they swim around vacuuming up food. You’ll need a big, strong rod and reel to catch sturgeon, but it also has to be sensitive to detect when the sturgeon first sucks the bait in its mouth. To conserve Sturgeon populations which are in decline in many regions, practice catch and release.

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POPULAR SPORT FISH STURGEON

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Catching fish to eat dates back to the earliest days of humankind. One of the earliest known fishing tools was the gorge, a piece of wood, bone or stone that was sharpened at both ends. Tied to a line and covered in bait, it would get stuck in a fish’s throat. Fishing hooks carved from bone began to be used in southern Europe 30,000 years ago. As humans developed the ability to work with metal, more effective fishing hooks were fashioned. By Egyptian

♥ times metal hooks similar to what we use today were common. At first, lines were held in hands, but eventually attaching the line to a branch became prevalent. Fishing with live bait was common from prehistorical times, but there is some evidence that fly-fishing occurred as early as Roman times. The main technological advance in terms of flyfishing took place in England in the 13th century.

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HISTORY OF FISHING

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reset your fly. What makes the roll cast work is the water surface tension on the line. This tension holds the line allowing you to load the rod during the forward cast. You need to be near water to practice this cast:

· Hold the fly rod out in front of you and make sure there are no tangles in your fly line. · Bring the fly rod tip back so that a small segment of line hangs loosely behind your casting shoulder. · Move the fly rod forward gradually; slowly at first, then speed it up steadily. · Stop when the rod tip is still pointing slightly upward and watch the loop unroll.

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The roll cast is a very efficient and effective when there is no room behind you to cast due to trees, bushes or other obstructions. The roll cast is also effective when there is a stiff wind at your back or need to just quickly

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FLYFISHING ROLL CAST

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Several species of salmon live along the Pacific coast, including Chinook (King, Spring), Chum, Coho (Silver), Pink and Sockeye. Only one type, Atlantic salmon, can be found on the east coast. Size: Up to 30 lbs. (Coho). Lifespan: 1-5 years. Habitat: Coastal waters, rivers and estuaries. Food: Smaller fish like herring, krill, sprat and sand eels. Behavior: All salmon are born in fresh water, migrate to salt water, and then return to rivers and lakes to spawn. They usually stay in the main cur-

rent, resting below or above major obstacles. Bait: Crayfish, herring, smelt. Fishing tips: In rivers during spawning season, look for gravel beds where females will prepare their spawning bed. Males will fight each other over the right to spawn so there will likely be several males in the area. Salmon don’t feed in rivers during spawning, but will lash out at flies out of territorial instinct. In saltwater fishing, trolling with a bait and lure rig works well, especially a spoon lure that mimics the movement of swimming fish.

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POPULAR SPORT FISH SALMON

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Fishing