Last weekend was the annual Blue Jay’s Blue Knuckle fishing derby.
I had “Team Hanson” or aka the “Grizwalds” up fishing with me again. On Friday we prescouted and hooked into 6 rainbows in 5 hrs. but the biggest was only 5 lbs. – good numbers but we needed to hook into a bigger fish to get us in the derby. The derby is for Rainbows over 10lbs.
Well, day one on Saturday, out we go. By noon we had hooked four rainbows with the biggest being 6lbs. Not too many other fish had been caught that morning by the other boats. After a couple of hours of no bites we decided to send a Lyman plug down on the downrigger and see what would happen. Maybe we’ll grab a bull trout for supper! Five minutes after the plug made it to 43ft., the rod snaps off the clip, and line starts peeling off. I yell we got a big trout on, and Debbie grabs the rod. Ten minutes later spells success as I net her 12lb 2 oz rainbow. Lots of hooting and hollering as we now have one to weigh.
When we get in to the dock that night to weigh it in, we are the only boat that caught a trout over 10lbs that day. We know better than to get our hopes up because most derbies in the past produce fish in the 20lb range – maybe we’ll hold on for third.
Day two we head out feeling pretty good about having the only fish weighed in but worry that it may not stay in the top three money spots.
We send the downrigger down to 43ft. right away, and within 15 minutes it trips. Doyle grabs the rod and brings in a fat 10 pound bull trout. Right size but wrong species, as this is a rainbow only derby. A little while later we get a small rainbow, then the downrigger at 17 ft starts screaming line off. I swear up and down that we’ve hooked another big rainbow by the amount of line coming off the reel. It took 20 minutes to get it in, but it was a 9 lb bull that fought like I have never seen. A great battle but again the wrong species for the derby.
We head into the dock for final weigh-in at 4:00PM. An 11lb 1oz rainbow had been caught at 1:30pm, so they got 2nd prize, and we took 1st.
Congratulations Debbie Hanson!!
For 37 boats out and only two big trout caught, the fishing was slow to say the least – but that’s fishing, and it was probably due to the unstable weather that we had.
Myself and “Team Grizwald” are already looking forward to next years derby so we can defend our title.
Fishing continues to be very good, and everyone is getting good numbers of fish. Rainbows are hitting very consistently on hair when you get the ” Rainbow Ripple “. Bull trout have been down at 50ft for the past week.
When young Wes and his dad came up for a couple of days, he was kept busy on day one with 15 fish coming to the boat. The picture is of him holding an 11lb rainbow which he brought in, while dad had a nice bull trout on – one of two double headers that day. Day two was a little slower, but we still managed to get 8 nice fish. Twas a great trip, and by day two, Wes was pretty much running the boat and lines for me.
My friend Horace was up again to break some more IGFA records. He currently has three records from Arrow Lakes. One of the days he was up, we hooked 22 fish, and came within 1/2 lb of breaking a record.
This all sounds all good and fine, but remember that we were using 2 and 4 pound test line. I’m used to the 4lb, and have no problem trolling any of my conventional gear. When he pulled out the 2lb, I started calling him names like “your crazy”. If you sneeze while holding 2lb test, it will break! However, Horace has the proper gear for this line, and it’s amazing what you can do with it. I almost started to relax by the last day, and now 4lb test seems like wire cable!
Horace will be back in a few weeks, and hopefully we’ll break some records then – lots of great fishing left this winter.
It was a beautiful November, and some days that made for tough fishing. However, in the blink of an eye, it all turned around, and the bite was on. Getting good numbers of fish in the 8 – 15 pound range, and the biggest fish goes to Doug Seaton with a 21lb 6oz male Gerrard.
Last Friday was an exceptional day! The Bull Trout boys were back from Calgary, and they were determined to change their name to Gerrard Boys. Last year they had lots of Bull Trout, but not too many Rainbows. That’s just the way it goes sometimes. However, this time on day one of their three day trip, the weather had turned ugly and socked in, and the trout were turned on. We had two big Gerrards in the boat before lunch and assorted other Bulls and rainbows. By the end of the day, we had boated 15 fish – with the biggest being a 14 lb doe. What a day!!
It’s a great way to spend a winter day – out on the open water in a heated boat catching giant trout!!