Archive for July, 2012

SS Minnow Report on the Big Boyz Fishing Tournament

Henricks Family on the BoardLooks like fishing is holding well for the Henricks family so far. My daughter-in-law Christina leads the way with the largest walleye so far and my grandson Hunter is on the leaderboard with a large walleye as well.

There is a lot of time left yet for things to change but weather looks pretty good for several days and more big fish will come. I might even be able to get the old SS Minnow out fishing again and have a shot at putting something on the board.

Big Boyz Tournament Seeing Fish

It looks like things have settled enough to bring some nice fish into the weigh station. Walleyes are available and some good fish are coming in from a wide variety of locations.

Rainbows can still be caught but you need to get out farther from the harbour this year. My typical closer runs for the SS Minnow are not there and I need to be extremely mindfull of the weather in that boat. I need to be sure I can get back home in the event of foul weather and we had an exceptional amount of swell activity from the east this year.

I went out Saturday morning and ran a long distance down east. I boated 3 rainbow and 2 nice walleye in the morning. A friend of mine was nearby and had a great day boating good numbers of rainbow and walleye. He had the luxury of many lines in the water.

My son was out in his boat with the family and boated several walleye and was at the top of the leaderboard for the day when I left.

Another friend and his buddy had their boats out Sunday and smacked both species real good but they were a LONG RUN from Wheatley harbour.

Overall, the fishing can be very good but you will need to put on some miles to catch the rainbows. I just hope I get one or two more light wind days so I can get the SS Minnow out there and boat some fish. I am going to make a long run if I get the right weather.

Wheatley Fishing Report July 27 2012

Some Hope For Rainbows on The SS Minnow

Bottom Temps July 28

Bottom Temps July 28

I went out Friday morning and abondoned my traditional location and headed East to 64 feet of water. I fished until about 11:00 AM and boated 1 small walleye. Fishing in my normal depth range was extremely tough. I have been relegated to dipsey divers. With the recent water temperature changes, the fish appear to be holding at greater depths. I may find it necessary to mount a couple riggers to fish the SS Minnow with the current conditions.

Below is the Wheatley Harbour Friday report. It indicates number of fish caught. You can completely disregard reported locations!! The Tournament is on. For example, reports of fish “south” in 55 or 60 feet of water is not possible. It doesn’t happen! What I like though is the fact that rainbows are being caught. That is a relief. It just indicates a change of tactics is necessary.

BOWS/PICK: 2bow caught SO at 55ft, 13/20bow by the windmills in 55-60ft of water, 3 limits on bows 12miles E in 55-60ft, 10bow 2pick at the windmills in 55ft, and 10bow 15miles E.

Wheatley Fishing Report July 24 2012

Wheatley Rainbow Fishing Still Off

Surface Temps Stabilize

Surface Temps Stabilize

I went out for a few hours yesterday morning but the wind picked up and I had to head in at 9:30 AM. The news was not good. I marked a lot of fish on the fish finder and worked some schools of bait fish the whole time. I caught 3 walleye and lost a small walleye by the boat when I tried to hand bomb it in.

I don’t know if the rainbow moved out or if they are just upset by conditions and are off the bite. They can be very tempermental. There is still lots of fresh water shrimp building on the lines and lots of bait fish so hopefully the rainbows will stay and turn on again.

The weather looks pretty miserable the next 2 days and opening day of the Big Boyz Tournament is not especially promising.

Tactics Fishing “The Rollover”

Expand Your Fishing Range

If we have been thrown a full scale temperature inversion, we may need to adjust our tactics to fish the recent apparent water temperature rollover. It is likely that the water “mixed up” and lower levels have warmed up. This is not all gloom and doom as long as the overall temperature did not drop enough to signal the rainbows that it is time to move on. They don’t have calendars and clocks. They have physical signals. I think we may be OK this time and the rainbows will hang in there. (I am hoping)

You may have noticed the walleyes have not been severely affected. They have a wider temperature comfort zone. The thing to keep in mind is this fact. Typically when fishing rainbow, we can almost ignore the bottom 1/3 of the water. If it comes up to the same temperature as the upper layers of water, it adds 50 percent more water we need to fish. Yes  – that bottom 1/3 is 50 percent of the top 2/3. The wave action breaks up the large schools of baifish and large schools of baitfish attract large numbers of predator fish. We need calmer conditions to bunch them up again.

Hoping the rainbows do not go away, we will need to be more vigilant in observing where the fish are holding and probably expand our depth range. As the water layers up again (if it does in fact layer up) our target zone will become smaller and fishing will be easier. Until then, you are going to be stuck with fish spread out all over and fewer “hot spots”. I think we will still have rainbows but we will need to be more than just “random and lucky” fishing for them!

My very “Best Tip” right now – watch your fishfinder. If you are lucky enough to spot 2 large schools of baitfish within 1/4 mile, you better fish it! Your odds increase dramatically!



Why Does the Thermocline Shift Concern Me?

The Thermocline and How It Effects Fishing

Temps July 22 Stabilizing

Temps July 22 Stabilizing

You may have noted in the previous post that I am a little concerned about a major shift in temperature layering of the water with the recent wind and cold front. Fish Do Not Think! They are totally motivated by two things right now – FOOD and Comfortable water! (spawning is the other “key trigger” but that factor does not apply in this situation)

Many lakes will develop a thermocline during the hot summer. A thermocline develops when layers of water seperate into several layers and the lowest level of water in the lakes is full of rotted decaying matter which also depletes of oxygen.

Because this bottom layer of water is depleted of oxygen bait fish cannot survive below the thermocline. This concentrates baifish and predator fish above the oxygen depleted zone and brings them together in tighter feeding zones for fishing.

You might mark fish on your fish finder but you may fail to get them to strike if they are not in their “feeding zone”! Most species of fish have a preferred temperature of water that they will actively feed in. Find this area of temperature with fish present and you will greatly increase your chances of catching fish.

Fish are cold blooded. In water too cold, fish will be dormant, sluggish and will not feed. In water too warm, they will be seeking a more comfortable environment. So, an understanding of how different temperatures of water break up will help.

On larger bodies of water masses of water temperature are much larger and in a constant state of change. The location of these large masses of temperature are highly affected by the changes in weather conditions. These large masses of warm and cold water also have a moderating layer that is known as a “temperature break”and we often refer to that obvious line as the thermocline. The area of, and immediately around, the temperature break is the most active “feeding zone” and generally offers a kind of invisible wall that concentrates the baitfish and in turn the predator fish.

Let’s hope we haven’t been affected too badly with this recent upset. If the baitfish break up and spread out, our target fish will spread out also and fishing will get tougher.

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