A successful opener
- Blog Post by: Josh Hagenmeister
- May 11, 2009 - 1:04 AM
I had it all planned out--start shallow and work deeper. Turns out, most of the fish my clients and I caught were in small groups hanging around the 19-30 ft range--so I did the opposite. With 46 degree water temps (basically only 2-3 degrees cooler than Lake Superior on a summer day) and a delayed shiner run, the fish could have been anywhere. With a little searching around with the electronics and a little information from the locals it didn't take long to realize that the fish were a little deeper than planned. Par for the course on "Opener".
Starting the day at 6:30 or so, I "marked" some fish and "bait balls" clearly in the 19-30 ft range just outside the first break off shore. No problem I thought, all I have to do is have a story for the local "Patriot" radio station who would be calling me @ 7:30 am live to the boat. One hour to catch some fish?-- sign me up.
Sure enough after 15 minutes we had three fish in the box and a story to tell the station when they called. Bottom bouncers and a shiner minnow and some precise boat control and we were in business. Thankfully I was in a "stay put" mood focusing on each fish I marked--giving each fish multiple chances from all trolling angles to bite--and most did. Trust me, I am not a patient person and will move spots immediately if fish are not caught in 5-10 minutes. After exhausting the bouncers utilizing a fast clip on the troll, we switched to live bait rigs to filter out the remaining fish that could be triggered take the bait. With the active fish removed from the school, it was time to change fishing spots.
Moving spots is always a gamble--no matter what. There is always that "what if" devil guy on your shoulder. I say ignore him and follow your gut and dont look back. Well maybe 2 hours later look back, and then hit the same spot again,-- other then that--no way. This time the results of not looking back and finding one other spot with similar characteristics was my meal ticket. Four of us had our fish by lunch time and it was once again a successful "Opener". Remember, the fishing only gets easier throughout the season. Good Luck, Capt., Josh www.minnesotaguideservice.com
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