We went from blissful summer to invigorating fall in a single day here at Scott. There was a glorious run of fifteen consecutive days of full sun, blue skies and light to no winds. It was heavenly to be on the water. These were the lazy, hazy days of summer but the fish were a bit lazy too and our hardcore guides were screaming for a change in the weather. They felt there had been enough of the swimming at shore lunch, T-shirts and flip flops. They got their wish. On August 5th, the first day of our 12th group of the season fall arrived with authority. After days of flat water a huge west wind charged through the area, putting waves even in the smallest bays. Fishing on August 5th was rough and tough. It was difficult to get anywhere but the wind did its job, stirring things up very well. On cue on August 6th the winds dropped to a more reasonable level and the fishing just plain exploded. It was a day to remember. The number of fish caught zoomed up from single digits to the dozens and the size of the fish took a quantum leap. A total of thirty trophy fish were tallied in a single day. (That would be a good season for some lodges.) Just how big were some of these fish? Ask Brad Finney how it feels to land lake trout of 36, 39, 41.5 and 42 inches—all in one day. Ask Vianne Kucera about her day: a 39.5” laker, a trophy grayling and pike of 41.5 and 47 inches. Better yet ask her husband Jack. He had an epic day, one of the most dramatic in our lodge’s sixteen year history. He got his trophy grayling, added a trophy lake trout and watched his guide get a bit giddy putting the cradle under pike of, get this, 40, 41, 42, 45 and 49 inches. Both Vianne and Jack had the rare “Done in One”, getting the 100+Club jacket in a single day. What a day! So much for the old wives tale about pike losing their teeth in August. This August day at Scott turned out to be our best day of the season, so far, but there is a lot of August to go.
The wonderful string of summer days did produce many fishing memories. Those two weeks since our last website update, July 20 to August 4, offered a more than boat rides. A lot of big fish were taken, especially lake trout. Lakers over 40” were landed by a bunch of anglers: Mike Stanford, Beth Rini, Jared Penfold, Wes Odeguard, Mike Scheidt, Mike Latcham, Tom Hellwig, Dave Wallace and Pat Purcell. All “supersized’ their lake trout experience. But the trout day of the summer belonged to Joe Wright and Dave Wallace. They had a reel Day on Beauvais, one of our premier lake trout fly out destinations. Between the pair they collected eight lake trout trophies, the biggest stretching the tape to 42”. Pike fishing with the glassy water was tougher. The ambush predator takes vacation days when prey and predator can see each other too clearly. But two fat 45s were caught, one each by Mike Thornbrugh and Ernest Papacek. Balancing the perfect summer days with the slower fishing produced a lot of very happy customers and a rebooking rate of nearly 100% for those three groups.
THE WINDOW IS CLOSING—FAST!
Speaking of rebooking rates this summer has been off the charts at Scott Lake Lodge. We don’t pretend to understand the economy or the fishing industry. We only know how to take care of customers. But our customers clearly want more of the unique, personalized customer service our team of 28 staff offers. Whatever the reasons for the surge we do know for a fact that for the period of June 11 to July 31 of 2013 we have 240 of the 260 available spots sitting with deposits right now. If you are one of the many who are “thinking” about a Scott trip for next June or July it’s time to stop thinking and jump to your phone or keyboard. Email our Sales Manage Jon Wimpney at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the office in Rhinelander, WI at 888/830-9525 (715/362-7031 from Canada or abroad). There is only so much of the Scott Lake Experience to go around. Get some now. We did sell out 100% in 2012 but it took us right to the end of the selling season. This year it looks like an early sell out.We always give customers the right of first refusal for a next year’s booking so we will post August openings later in the month.
The biggest news on our island this summer, apart from the sensational fishing, has been the Olivia/Oliver story. Our pair of island Long-eared owls successfully raised four owlets. Our last update showed the balls of fuzz in their nest. They have learned to fly now and all four have flown the coop. (They were just too spooky and quick to get any good photographs). By now they are already terrorizing mice, voles and other small mammals somewhere in our neighborhood. Congrats to Olivia and Oliver for another contribution to owldom. We’re not sure why but this has been the Year of the Moose around here. It seems like almost every night during our after dinner “fish du jour” show images of moose keep popping up. It could be that the huge fire seasons of four and five years back providing tens of thousands of acres of new birch tree growth—prime winter forage for the biggest land mammal in North America—helped a lot of moose get through the long winters here. There have been many black bear sightings as well. That species also benefits from fire, the new open area are perfect for berries of all color but especially the abundant blueberries. Eagles, osprey and loons of course are seen every day. What would you expect? This is a pristine wilderness area: it is home to a lot of species besides the common anglularius homo sapiens spotted around here.
More on the summer at Scott in a couple of weeks. Stay tuned. And be sure to follow the season via our website (www.scottlakelodge.com). Click on the News from the 60th and read the Tundra Times posted daily. You can read it before the anglers here get out of bed. And take a look at the Pic of the Day for a shot of fish adrenaline every day.