As we rolled out of bed and looked over the lake all
we could see were whitecaps and trees bending over along the shoreline. The
forecast this day was for winds steady at 50 kilometres with gusts of 70
kilometres. This meant we had to trailer our boats from the Tobin Lake Resort
were we were staying out to the Nipawin Provincial Park.As it turns out, we had our best big fish day
partly because we decided trolling cranks in this heavy wind was the only
option. It also meant we decided to stop at the stretch known as Whiterock on
our way to the mouth of the river. On our first trolling run, five minutes in,
the clicker on Boyd’s level wind started to scream. Something large had grabbed
his Cotton Cordell Wally Minnow and decided to head the other direction. We
all knew what that meant and the team sprang to action. Jim and I quickly
reeled in our lures. Since the fish was a long way back (200 feet) we put the
kicker motor in neutral and let Boyd feather the front troll motor so the boat
would slowly come back to the fish. One of the problems anglers have with big
fish is getting the boat back to the fish before it comes to the surface. This happened
to friend Russ Heatherington and I one year at the Vanity Cup walleye tournament when
a monster walleye came to the surface too far from the boat. It rolled on the
surface and spit the #8 hook I was using on my live bait rig. When using
crankbaits, though, you have a better chance with the two treble hooks. Still,
Boyd was not taking any chances with this large fish, controlling the boat as
best he could in this fierce gale.Finally a huge walleye rose out of the depths and I was able to get the
net under this beauty.After a quick
weigh (12lbs, 8 ounces) and some pictures the fish was back in the water, the
largest walleye Boyd had caught on a crankbait.
The men in fur caps..lock on mode
Not long after, I hooked up with a nice fish as well
on my Bomber Long A red and white crank. This lure had produced some huge fish
for me over the years at Tobin and it didn’t disappoint on this trip either.
Last fish of the day!
As the day wore on we continued to crank a number of
different areas with good success on a variety of lures. At the end of the day
we headed back out to the mouth, the wind having settled a bit and started our
last trolling run. Seven fish later we ended on a nine pounder just after seven
pm. Every day we were there the bite
ended at this time, but we were also discouraged by the fact that we had all
tangled our lines in the darkness.
Tomorrow, in this blog I will talk about some tricks
about trolling crankbaits in the dark to make things a bit easier on all
involved as head out for Day 3 of our adventure to Tobin Lake.