Monday, June 29, 2015

Catching dinner

I got a text from my friend Drew about targeting walleye in the Winooski River, which along with a few other Champlain tributaries, gets a spring run of spawning walleye.  He was interested in getting a Master Class walleye (25" or better).  We picked a section of the Winooski that I knew were holding fish, and went after work one day and launched his canoe from the bank.  The water was high and a little stained, but easily fishable. 

I had a great feeling!  After catching up and exchanging fishing stories from the days prior (he had landed a giant of his own around the same time as my steelhead)  We started upriver from where we launched and quickly found out the current was a bit too fast for us, even dragging an anchor.  We moved downstream where the river widened and the current slowed.  We targeted some deeper runs that I've caught fish in before.  The setup was simple, and I showed him the technique used for jigging walleye with minnows.  Before long, he had a fish on!  He pulled it up close enough to the canoe so we could see what it was, and sure enough it was a walleye!

I netted the fish and he eagerly took it out and measured it.....BINGO!  26"!  This was his Master Class walleye!

I was glad he was able to get his walleye out of the way, and I knew it was only a matter of time before I hooked up into one myself.  The current made for tough fishing, and being in a canoe with high water and strong current is difficult to stay in the area you want.  We spent most of the time on the water paddling upstream, or positioning the canoe to where we wanted.  I got my turn at a fish a little while after, but it didn't stay on long.  I hooked up shortly after though, into a nice 28" slabber!  It was getting dark out and we had a ways to paddle back, so we gave it about 15 more minutes before heading in.  We didn't have long to begin with, and being in a canoe without a motor made things difficult, but I think we did well considering. 

28" of marble eye!
Targeting walleye is something I'll be getting more into once my boat is ready to roll.  I've had luck catching them from the bank, but I know that a boat with a motor makes it 100 times easier, and that night only proved it!

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