Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Five things to do at Leech Lake this summer

#1 Catch a Muskie

Indeed the ultimate freshwater challenge and there may be no better place to consistently catch 45"-50" fish in Minnesota.

#2 Get a Growler

Visit Leech Lake Brewing Company's off the beaten path brewery, sample their varieties and take home a few growlers. Don't forget to pick one up for #4 on my list.

#3 Walleye Fish with Artificial Lures

Trolling the basins and shorelines can be really effective for 18"-27" Walleyes and is great for spending time with family and friends.  Pitching jig/plastic combos or plugs to windswept shorelines can be deadly for Walleyes too from May through October.

#4 Have a Boil

Invasive and delicious Rusty Crayfish carpet the lake bottom in certain areas and are perfect for a summertime outdoor meal.

#5 Eat Pizza

It is a toss-up between Benson's Emporium or the Village Square so it's best to sample both.

Cheers and hook-sets!

Monday, March 24, 2014

Jumbo Perch Gumbo

*Make a roux
      -1/2 stick of butter and 4 tbs flour
      -6 cups fish or chicken broth
*Veggies chopped and diced
      -3/4 cup okra
        (can substitute green beans and a little corn starch)
      -4 cloves garlic
      -1 onion
      -2 celery ribs                 
      -2 carrots
      -1 bell pepper
      -2 large tomatoes
      -1/2 cup red or white wine
      -2 bay leaves
      -2 tbs Old Bay seasoning
      -Salt, pepper, hot sauce to taste
*Fish and meat cut-up
      -1# Perch fillets
      -1/2# shrimp
      -2 links chorizo or other sausage
Directions- Make the roux in a sauce pan by cooking and stirring the flour and butter over a low/med heat for 10 min. Do not burn. In a large pot, sauté vegies and deglaze with wine. Add seasoning, roux, cooked sausage, season to taste. Simmer low for 20 min. then add fish and simmer additional 10 min. Serve with rice.

Cheers and hook-sets!

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Hail Mary Shark

There are too many angling options in S.W. Florida but that is a good thing. It was the last morning of our trip, bags packed and I still hadn't touched my new Penn surf rod. With just three hours until departure, I grabbed my 3 Ladyfish out of the freezer and pointed the fam toward the beach. My first two baits got ran out almost immediately and came back with just the heads snipped cleanly off. The last Hail Mary cast worked out though as I was able to hook and land my first (all be it small) Black Tip, a real thrill. It is definitely hard to go back to ice fishing after this trip.

Cheers and hook-sets!

Monday, March 10, 2014

Off-Shore Grouper Fishing

I got off shore with my dad last week too. The highlights were a "baby" Goliath Grouper (40#) and a 10' Mako Shark that surfaced to check out our chum bags.

 We also managed many short Red Grouper, one keeper Red and enough Porgies and Grunts for three fish meals. The Gulf sure does have some awesome angling opportunities.

Cheers and hook-sets!

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Pre-Season Pitching- Inshore S.W. FL

It was spring training with the long rods for me and the fam last week as we pitched jigs and soft plastic flukes to the mangrove bays of Pine Island Sound.

On one two hour trip out in the Gheenoe, me and wife-e each managed an Inshore Slam (Redfish, Snook and Sea Trout in the same outing)...not a Grand Slam however as we were shy the Tarpon.
I had multiple Red Drum and Snook that were in the 30" range, which again proved to be quite sporting on light tackle from a small craft.
I was also impressed with the Twinkies 50 million dollar renovation of Hammond Stadium, and they looked solid as they swept their 2-games against the Red Sox.
Cheers and hook-sets!