Weathering the Weather
Anglers are well known for their patience. It’s a good thing because it was tested during our fifth group of the still young 2019 season. They had to wait out some of the worst mid-summer weather we have seen in the twenty-three years of the current ownership. In less than a month of operations we have seen it all—intense, burn your bare feet on the floor of the boat heat, the six-layers of clothing cold front, the calm lake surface that goes for miles and wind and waves right to the edge of fishability. This group got the six-layer option. It was damn cold, unprecedented for this time of year. Since, as we’ve often commented in these posts, pike love warm water and sunshine, the first four days of this five-day trip turned out to be quite challenging for pike fisherman. They were patient enough to wait four days before the sun finally made an appearance and gave our group a shot of vitamin D and a shot at some real good fishing.
Despite the nasty wind and cold, our anglers kept heading out and, except for one day of ridiculously high winds, did quite well, catching a lot of fish and some very impressive fish. Fish like the monster pike of 47.5” that Nate Naprstek induced to grab his fly just 15 minutes from the lodge; the 47” pike that Andrew Troop landed; the 46 inchers taken by Josh Nardo, Brent Laing, Dave Morales 2nd, and Tom Wigglesworth, or the 45 brought to the boat by John Green. Considering the weather, there were some amazing results.
As often happens the big pike came in clusters: Josh Nardo and Brent Laing enjoyed seven-trophy days; John Green had a six-trophy day and Andrew Nardo had a five-trophy day. Frank and Susan Saraka had a wonderful mixed bag (pike, trout and grayling) of six trophies each, earning them the Trophy Triple hat. Andy Nardo left wearing one too. Gerry O’Brien got the whole enchilada, joining the 100+Club with trophy pike, trout and grayling that collectively measured over 100”. His total was a fat 102.
While the pike story this week was pretty good, the best story was the lake trout. That was the one benefit of the cold conditions—it kept the lake trout up shallow, right on the surface where anglers casting for pike could tie into some great fish. No weights. No heavy tackle. Just great fights with fish that typically are much deeper. With any tackle a lake trout of 38” or better is a tough customer. On pike gear they are downright nasty fighters as Susan Saraka and Andrew Nardo found out. Getting a 40” plus trout that way is a real angling achievement. Ask Chris Kasper or Gerry O’Brien who landed 41” lake trout or Frank Saraka who got a 41.5” beauty. How about a 12-year-old dealing with that much raw power. Colter Sloan knows how that felt. He got a fish of a lifetime, a 41.5” lake trout, on the coldest and wildest day of the week. Congrats to Colter, but the poor kid is now ruined for fishing anywhere else.
That was the four-day story. On that fifth day the sun did shine, and the trophies rolled in, 32 on that final day. Bruce Koslowski got five pike, topping out at 47”. Gerry O’Brien and Andrew Troop got a mess of big grayling and Will Waltrip pulled in four trophy pike and a 39.5” laker. It was a great way to end the trip. Rain or shine, wind or calm, the Scott Lake trip always ends too soon. That’s why almost everyone comes back the next year: it’s an addiction that brings only smiles.