Do you want a fish story...about the one that got away... OR do you want a picture holding your trophy ?
Attention to detail re: your equipment can make all the difference. Dull hooks are the number one cause of lost fish...especially the biggies. A simple hook file and a few minutes of your time are all that is required to rectify the fact that factory hooks are NEVER sharp enough out of the box, your hook points need to be sticky sharp....that means they should stick when dragged across your thumbnail. Your snap swivel and leader are the next components in your connection to your trophy. Whether you use flourocarbon, single strand or twisted wire your leader needs to be in top condition, kinked, scraped, nicked or other wise damaged leaders need to be replace BEFORE they cost you a fish so don't let a $2-3 dollar part let you down. Replace your snaps when the paint begins to wear off or if they loose their spring, some anglers go so far as to use a split ring to attach their lures instead of snaps to insure a solid attachment. The line you use is important... a no stretch braid in 100lb test will do the job for most applications... the new "super lines " can last for years if they are not abused but if it starts to fray or is nicked replace it or cry later when a backlash sends your $20 bait flying or a big one breaks you off. Rod guides should be checked for cracking, often a crack is un-noticed until the weight of a fish cuts your line.
Now is the time to get your gear ready, once you get on the water excitement causes anglers to ignore and hope....hope is never a solid plan for success. Remember you are often looking for one good bite when you chase the freshwater queen so make sure you are ready when it happens...you'll be taking a picture instead of telling the story about the one that got away.
Saturday June 5th is highlighted on most MN muskie anglers calendar...it is the day the hometown team gets to play.
The statewide opener happens this coming weekend and an early spring has...well.. "spring fever" at its highest pitch in years. Water temps are almost summer like statewide and the early seaon promises to be a good one. Muskies spawn early as muck bottom bays warm up after the chill of winter. The somewhat delayed opener here in MN is designed to protect those spawners and let them....spawn... so we can have more baby muskies. Most years the spawn would be just finishing and the bite slow but this season I saw signs of active spawning well over a month ago and the fish should be recovered from the vigors of mating and ready to put the feed bag on.
This week I'll write daily about tackling the premier gamefish of our waters. Tune in.
This weekend marks the unofficial start to the muskie fishing season..........sort of. George's Minnesota Muskie Expo returns to Concordia University Friday thru Sunday. The expo is named after it's founder George Wahl a Minnesota Muskie Icon...from what I know of Mr Wahl he would rather be remembered as quiet and under the radar than 'iconic" but the creator of the expo, longtime suporter of Muskies Inc and inventor of what was for a long time the number one big fish bait.... the Eagle Tail bucktail earned that label and respect. George has passed away but this weekend anglers eager to talk, shop and learn about muskie fishing will flock to the expo renamed in his honor.
In reality most people going out for their first Muskie fishing adventure are trying to hook and land the fish....what they don't realize is after that happens just once the Muskie has hooked YOU. Thus the Expo...something to tide us over from ice out untill the first week of June when the season actually opens... a place where everyone else understands the addiction.
The expo is about everything that is Muskie...guides, resorts, boat dealers, free seminars from local and national experts, a special kids lure building area, tackle companies both large and small, booths offering special "show only" lure colors and specials, "Hunt for Big Fish" host Larry Dahlberg will be there showing how he makes some of his own unique fish catching creations. You can even have the famous "Double Cowgirl" spinners made right on site in any color combination you can dream up ! If you want to purchase a one of a kind or truly unique bait or would like to compare replica mounts from the best in the business...it is all there.
Thanks to the MN DNR and Muskies inc. the fishing opportunities for Muskies are abundant and thanks to a great catch and release ethic among Muskie anglers there are more than enough fish to share. So if you either have or want Muskie fever come down to the expo and be around others just like your self....Muskie addicts at the expo...you won't be alone.... I know I'll be down there talking about fishing and catching up on all of last years stories...all three days!
Friday 2-9PM Saturday 10-7PM Sunday 10-4PM
The Minneapolis Boat show is under way . Friday Saturday and Sunday at the convention center in downtown Minneapolis. Feel a bit of summer and view many of the new models before the ice melts. This is a great chance to see many different brands and models all under one roof. This year it seems like a few of the BIG BIG boats are missing but the fishing and sport boats are well represented. I will be in the Frankies Marine/ Ranger boats booth right inside the front door......... stop in and see the new boats (including the new Ranger 621 ) and talk muskie fishing !