Our 18th and second last group of the season meet fall head on. Since most of the crew had been up the same week in prior years, they knew what to expect—some cool temperatures, some spectacularly painted landscapes with the birch in full yellow dress and much of the ground cover a bright scarlet, maybe some northern lights and probably some big fish. They got what they expected and more. Ask John and Jim Heinmiller, a father/son team from Minnesota who came this far north for one reason–to get big fish. They succeeded, combining for 20 trophy fish. As frosting on their fishing cake, Jim was able to sight fish (yes, in late August) to massive northern pike. He had the ultimate fly angler’s thrill of throwing to a 47” and a and an incredibly girthy 49” pike and connecting on both, any angler’s dream. Dad got to watch that show, but he had his own with a 45” pike and a bunch of arctic grayling including an 18” beauty. They don’t have grayling in Minnesota or pike that look and act like muskies. Or ask Liz Snyder who left the heat and bright sun of Florida for 60 degrees latitude north, a place that rarely sees 60 degrees of mercury on the thermometer at this time of year. Why? To catch big fish. She did. Liz had one of the most incredible lake trout days we have ever seen. On a single day she landed six trophy trout. Just ogle this lineup: a 36.5”, a 37”, a 40” (now we’re in supersized territory), a 43”, another 43” and an absolutely porcine 44 incher. All in one never-to-be-forgotten day.  Joe Sauger likes big fish too! He had done well on his first two trips to Scott but on his third trip he was treated to the top of the line, a 49-inch northern pike that gave him the fight of his fishing life. Seth Snyder also found out how tough fall pike are, tangling successfully with a 46.

There were many never-to-be-forgotten days this week. With 153 trophy fish landed there would have to be. Mark Graf had an arctic grayling day for the ages. He landed over a dozen trophy graylings including three 18s and three 19s. For this part of the world, those are monster grayling. Dan Spielman had a powerful grayling trifecta, getting fish of 19, 19.5 and a season-tying record of 20 inches. Josh Lanagan got an 18.5 as part of his Trophy Triple experience.

While pike and grayling were taken in big size and in big numbers, this was another memorable lake trout week. In addition to the Liz Snyder Slaughter, there were other monster trout taken: Liz’s husband, Ed, got a 40” along with Dave Darling; Lonnie Thompson and Ron Spork got 41s; and Paul Lorusso put a 42 in his guide’s net. There were so many 38s and 39s we can list them all. Well wait, there is lots of room on the web. OK, here goes: 38s were caught by Ron Spork, Dave Darling (a pair) and Ken Wollin; 39s were caught by Ron Spork (a pair), Seth Snyder, Lonnie Thompson, Steve Baransky, Dave Darling and Mark Graf. There were 41 trophy trout to headline this great week of fall fishing. While it was cool, it wasn’t too cold. It was simply fall, at its finest. Next year a few of our Week 18 anglers might be wearing their new 100+Club jackets. Mark Graf, Paul Lorusso, Seth Snyder, Dan Spielman and John Heinmiller will all be getting their custom jackets with embroidered fish and their lengths. Everyone left with great memories of shore lunches, the frantic calling of migrating loons, fish landed and missed and a great bonfire by the main lodge. Like the season, it was a week to savor.