Professors Gone Wild 2014

by Andy on September 30, 2014

While all of Canada has a bad case of Beaver Fever as a result of the visit by Jeremy Wade and his crew, the professor and I had too much work to do to be distracted. I had never visited VBL later than August and the weather was a bit unpredictable as was the fishing. We had days with frost and cool rains when parts of Canada were getting snow. This was followed by blue skies and near 80 degree F temperatures.

We enjoyed visiting with camp visitors Mark, Jeff, Joe, Jordan, Lindsey and others. Gord and Susanne were charming as always. Let’s start off with some of the bad news. We had one trip back to a place that the perchmaster dreams about nightly. We ran into some vicious bull perch which tore up Joe’s Beckman net. Clearly, these were perch that had never been ridden. Sadly, Beckman nets (made in Wisconsin) do not sell a replacement hoop. That lifetime yoke warranty is a bit of a joke eh?

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We also had a trech back to Caribou lake with Gord that ended sadly. It turns out that black bear are avid gas sniffers and tore up the only gas tank and two gas cans. No gas. A few casts to small mouth bass from the shore and back to High Rock and Clearwater. Maybe Gord can put together a post with more details and a photo of the shredded plastic cans? We suggested metal cans/tank for next year.

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Walleye fishing was a lot more challenging then we had experienced during the late summer bite. To be honest it was a bit of a mystery. Gord swears that the lake was turning over. The professor blamed it on the fish Gods and something known as the Rizzo curse. We will never know. There were some walleye to be had however.

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Fishing for Pike on several lakes was outstanding. I believe I had my personal best with a 40”+ fish weighing 20+#. No scale. No tape measure. It swims to see another day.

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There were also plenty of slot and “eater” pike and we were pleased to have Gord willing and waiting to clean our fish. Joe was the snake charmer.

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Gord notes that the checkered black and red Kenora Dinner jacket is sure to become world famous after the airing of a special t.v. show next year. Details of the show remain sketchy. The suspense is keeping the entire town of Vermilion Bay awake at night. Will the town be safe from the monsters in the bay?

The trout  and white fish cooperated very nicely and were fun to catch via jigging. Some of the new guests joined us for a trip one day.

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Be sure to ask Gord about the ‘walking billboard” discount next year. It beats the discount double check.

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Until next year….the monsters will have to wait.

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River Monsters…..VBL style!

by Gord on September 18, 2014

 

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It’s been an interesting summer and fall here at the lodge.  One of the highlights has been the people that come and stay with us.  Check this out… http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/thunder-bay/supersize-me-northwestern-ontario-style-1.2770311

I’ll post some further updates soon!

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A day of fishing comes to an end at Vermilion Bay Lodge

 

 

 

 

 

 

Maybe its just me, but I have noticed a trend on the Electric Beaver. The Pike seem to be bigger this year? That was our experience this year, catching lots of eater pike along with a few nice fish that were released to swim another day.

 

 

Steve & I had one secret spot that yielded nice pike on

almost every pass.

Steve - the Pike Master

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Some joined the trout in the cooler

Trout and Pike on Ice

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Others were released to swim another day.

Notice the large scar near the tail. Could their be larger prey in the area?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now that's a beefy fish

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pike Master does it again

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Off the board and very beefy

39" ?? We just wanted to get the fish back in the water

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Good things sometimes come in small packages. Everyone know Gord secretly loves to clean perch so we tried to indulge him.  Of Course Billy & John’s patience wore thin after pursuing the wary perch for about 20 minutes and left.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Steve discovered that true bull perch prefer very large baits. This one was tiny but bull perch were soon to follow.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Perch on Ice. The cooler starts to fill.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bill & John decided to try their luck at trophy Rock Bass. God only knows why.

Big John with a trophy Rock Bass

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The trout also cooperated.

Walleye’s? Oh yea there were some of those as well.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There were boats in camp that had fished muskie for weeks with only small success. We didn’t even cast for muskie until Friday morning. That could have been a mistake. Bill and I fished an area for two hours and raised 7 very nice fish. Nope, no pictures, no caught fish, just memories. One of the fish was over 50″, two were in the 45″ class. I would have loved to have seen Bill catch one of those on his snoopy pole. Looks like I will have to revisit a few of those boys when I return in September with the Professor.

 

 

 

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2 designs of the Bull Perch Rodeo poster

by charles W. Weiss on August 26, 2014

Simple black line version of the Bull Perch RodeO
by Vermilion Bay lodge guest Charles Weiss
 

                                                        copyright Charles Weiss 2014

Add colour to this exciting image and comes alive with an exciting jumping action filled BULL PERCH RODEO SCENE!

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Mid Summer and the fishing is fine…

by Gord on August 10, 2014

 

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Walleye fishing has been consistently good this summer, of which the “summer weather” has finally arrived.  The past week we’ve had sun, warm weather and high skies which has limited the best fishing to morning and evening but much to our surprise the walleye are still relating to the 12 – 16 foot shallows, as well as the more expected 20 –30 foot depths.  Minnows, crawlers and artificial have all been working well.  A group this week has been experimenting with “rip jigging” in the shallows and have produced some nice walleye on plastic tails and jig heads.   Some of the best locations are visible in the picture above…..nice and close!

What happened with the “Walleye Madness” week? 

Good question!  Due to a massive case of writer’s block I’ve been derelict in my blog duties.  I deserve to be punished….but wait, Joe and Andy will soon be here and that should be sufficient…

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First place went to Martha Hojberg with a very nice 26 inch walleye.  Her name will be permanently engraved on the lodge trophy to carry on the tradition of competitive women anglers such as multiple past winner Marsha McGee, who would be smiling at such an outcome. 

walleye madness awards night!

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Thanks to the boys from Manitoba (George, Tim and Cam) for providing the red green suspenders and forcing me to humiliate myself at the awards night.  Even Bryce is suspicious.  Fortunately the cocktail has a moderating effect.

 

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Last year’s big winner Erling Olson is presented with the latest VBL invention …..the revolutionary  “Butt Master”.  This self contained and portable personal cigarette butt disposal system is designed to eliminate nasty butt crap from the vicinity of the lodge entry portals.  I think Erling is confused but a quick demonstration has him smiling.

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poor pickeralstranded for catching fishstrong man contest 

It was a fun Walleye Madness week.  Thanks to all those who participated and to Ray at Bobby’s Corner for “cutting me a deal” on some great prizes!  Hope to see you in 2015!

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The perch await Gord's fast and furious fillet knife

My friend Billy always says, “I don’t drive all the way to Canada to fish for perch”. No but he drives all the way to Canada to catch walleyes, musky, pike, bass, and trout. All of which can be had in Wisconsin.

The difference is the setting, the size, and the quantity of fish….for all of these species. The odd thing is, Billy never misses a perch fry. Some of us, most notably, the Perchmaster, waves his perch flag high, fast, and furious. He argued for years that there was a very narrow spring window for catching a sink full of perch. It’s easier in the early spring, but much to Gord’s dismay, they can be caught year round. He won’t share the secret widely unless you ply him with liquor. Or you can ask the Perchmaster very nicely. He may grumble and frown while cleaning a sink full of perch, but inside he is smiling. It just adds to the entertainment value.

I go up to Vermilion Bay Lodge to fish a diverse species of fish. Why leave out the perch for a mid-week adventure and tasty fish fry? With a sport fishing license, you can have a limit of 50 fish (25 with the conservation license). These fish were meant to be eaten.

Bag of Perch on Ice

 

When the year-round perch rodeo was announced in January of this year (See: http://eaglelakeblog.blogspot.com/2014/01/giant-bull-yellow-perch-found-in-eagle.html  , it made me wonder. Does anyone sell a perch saddle? Is this the world’s first perch rodeo? Would Gord actively promote the event? Would he give us updates? Would the Professor and I dedicate a full two weeks to the pursuit of perch? The answer is no, no, no, no, and no.

Ride 'em cowboy!

For the un-initiated, there is already a white perch rodeo. A Park Improvement Association in Maryland already claimed that. See: http://www.docstoc.com/docs/15367043/Scholarship-Awards-White-Perch-Rodeo  The white perch is actually in the bass family. It’s more like a white bass and has a taste that matches that profile. It’s also an invasive species that has a negative influence on the white bass population. This group gives out a $500 scholarship. Rumor has it that Gord will be providing a $500 scholarship to any VBL guest to attend the Professor’s 2015 Perch seminar. The Perchmaster will be invited but will undoubtedly have an excuse for why he can’t attend.

There was also rumors of another perch rodeo in Maryland, but according to this thread, it is actually a Perch Round-Up. See: http://www.tidalfish.com/forums/showthread.php/398730-Mssa-Essex-perch-rodeo?p=2447762  I suspect this is the dreaded Ocean perch that often shows up on the plate after being assured by a waitress that it is indeed lake perch/yellow perch. It is soft and mushy and not worth another mention.

But I digress. The star of the VBL Perch Rodeo is the yellow perch, a.k.a. the Ontario jumbo perch, a.k.a. jumbo perch, a.k.a. humpies, a.k.a “get that mess of fish out of the fish house”. The true perch family includes the yellow perch, walleye, sauger, and many darter species. I think they make better table fare than the walleye or sauger. All are excellent.

We are told that the famous Charles Weiss is creating some type of trophy for this year’s year-long perch rodeo and I would be honored to have that in my office. After releasing a few of these: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OiUlMT0SQHY  I plan on keeping and cooking a few of these this fall: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3i6aoa_nANY

Gord....the master of the fillet knife.

 

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Walleye Madness… “the last day”

by Gord on July 23, 2014

 

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Boat heading out on day 3 of the Walleye Madness tournament

Rules for the 2014 Walleye Madness Week are simple.  The competition started Monday morning and ends today (Wednesday) at 4:00 p.m.  Largest walleye released during the 3 days will be crowned the winner.  In the event of a tie, other walleyes released will be used to determine the champion.  “Keep you worms cool and your snells tight!” 

Let’s check out some of the action thus far:

 

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Martha's 25

bad storm not the sunGreg's 46 inch muskie

Tonight we reveal the winner at the awards night and pot luck dinner.  Perhaps a few cocktails, tall tales and well deserved prizes are the theme for tonight.

Sound like fun?  Consider 2015 to join in the 10th Annual Walleye Madness!  Can’t wait?  We still have a few openings for the Musky Madness Week coming soon….September 6-13.  Give us a call!

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Looking regal with the stripes and spots of a top predator. Hand carved from Pine and painted
with acrylic by Vermilion Bay Lodge guest Charles Weiss.
Lots of sharp teeth re-created in the mouth.

A unique work of art and a wonderful memory of summer fishing on Eagle Lake.
 

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The summer continues…

July 21, 2014

  Remember this picture of Bill Stan and his 42 inch northern? …well, this 42 inch pike was also caught the same day.  Thanks to Ed Bright and Bob Emley for emailing me the pic (Bob caught it).  Both very nice fish and great photos.  Both released to grow even bigger of course. On a [...]

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Chuck’s Musky: “the aftermath”

July 12, 2014

  It starts with the lure…..now how do these stories usually go?  “It was just after dinner when I decided to hunt the elusive ‘lunge.  It was going to be me against the beast.” “It was over quickly.  I subdued the creature and captured his image.  He was back swimming the murk of Eagle Lake  [...]

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