Master Browns Part One
Yours truly with a chunky brown

It had been a number of years since my last visit to the Duck Mountains in west central Manitoba. This past week that all changed when I spent five days in the region. I was on a speaking tour to six schools in the Swan Valley region as part of a Stewards for the Resource program sponsored by Swan Valley Sport Fishing Enhancement Inc.  I travelled up from Winnipeg on the Saturday to participate in their annual banquet and fish fry in the community centre in Swan River. The next morning it was a day fishing with friend Duane Whyte and local angler Brian Hunter.  Both these individuals spend a lot of time chasing the trophy fish that exist in this region of the world.  The day previous Brian had caught some Master Angler brown trout from Laurie Lake, so it was an easy decision to return. I had never fished Laurie so I was pleasantly surprised when we arrived at the boat launch. 
This was a lot of fun!

The lake was surrounded by pine trees, with water the colour of the Caribbean, a beautiful aqua marine. Man, I thought even if we don’t catch a fish this was going to be fun. After launching Brian’s small aluminum boat we headed down the shore line to the east. Duane Whyte had the first hit a short time later but the fish didn’t stick around. 

 Duane with the first brown trout of the day

Ten minutes later Whytey  had the first fish to the boat, a small lake trout that was kept for supper. We then fished a small bay that had some wind blowing into it. This was going to prove the hotspot, producing both brown and lake trout. While we tried other spots, this shallow bay with two extended points held the active fish this day. While Duane caught the first three fish, including a 20.5 inch brown, I got hot later in the day with a 24.5, 22.5 brown along with a nice lake trout.  All in all we boated seven fish, a productive day on this tough to fish lake. All were caught on a #9 black and white floating Rapala that dove to about six feet with a 100 feet of line out. All the fish were caught along shallow shorelines. Special thanks to Brian Hunter who did a great job controlling the boat in tough windy conditions.  Hunter guided us all day without a line in the water, just the kind of unselfish guy he is…much appreciated Brian!
 Brian Hunter cradles a beautiful 27 inch fish he caught the next day

That was not going to be the case when I returned to the lake three days later.

More in Part Two!