The fishing season has ended for us here at Silver Water Wheel Lodge. We had very few boats on the water last week, but came back up to our usual numbers for this final week and I’ve combined the two weeks into a final fishing report for our 2017 season.
As we’ve come to expect here in the fall, our past couple weeks had a lot of weather extremes and fishing extremes too. We chased walleye out in summer deep water rock, mid-depth sand structures, and back into truly shallow water. The changing patterns meant more of each day spent searching and that is reflected in some days with low volume on our guide sheets, but once boats found fish the size was there. We had a total of 44 guided days focused on Walleye fishing, with 24 walleye over 27 inches, including eight 28’s, one 29, and two giant 30 inchers.
Piking took work these past weeks. Changing weather day to day meant the big pike were moving and we were most successful by methodically checking lots of varied structure each day. When boats found big fish they often came in groups with some medium sized fish as well. Each day took searching to find a spot holding fish and then working that spot methodically to get the big one. For these past two weeks we had 18 guided days spent pike fishing and caught and released 20 pike over 37 inches, with 5 over 39 inches and 4 over 40 inches.
The 2017 fishing season has come to a close here at Silver Water Wheel Lodge. At the season’s end our staff always looks back over the summer and from our guides’ perspective there were some noticeable trends throughout our fishing season.
Through our spring and transition seasons the walleye kept us moving, a lot of our very best and most exciting days for both volume and size came using plastics at speed. There were still days where slower, deeper, and subtler were the presentations that led to success, and as usual the trick was figuring out which way to go each day. It seemed to take longer than usual this year, but eventually the walleye did settle in to their summer locations. Once they did we found they regularly liked things subtle, but there were still a few truly memorable days when big fish were produced with speed. As we got to fall and some extreme weather swings, the majority of our big walleye started coming from the subtler presentations with only the occasional speed bite. Success with walleye on Lac Seul has always meant being ready to switch things up, but looking back our success with trophy walleye this year followed these very noticeable trends.
We missed out on one of our favourite pike bites this season. A combination of ice out timing and early season weather meant the ‘ice out’ big pike bite fell on a week where we did not have many anglers in camp that wanted to chase gators. Mid – summer piking was steady, and the fall bite came and went with our erratic weather.
For a fishing guide, these changes that Lac Seul throws at us every day, every week, and every year are what makes each new season a different challenge. That challenge is what keeps me coming back to see what answers – what new tactics, presentations, or locations will produce great fish over the course of the season. I think that’s what makes fishing Lac Seul interesting and fun for anglers and guides every day, every month, and every year.
Hope to see you all at ‘The Wheel’ in 2018!