Wherein your Intrepid Blogger Runs and Hides from Bad Weather in Northern Wisconsin to take Refuge with his In-Laws on Lake Otter Tail, Minnesota
How cold was it when I got to Northern Wisconsin? Would you believe 40 FREAKIN' DEGREES AT NIGHT??? Ridiculous. My brother takes the water temperature on our lake and on April 15 it was 73 degrees. The day I arrived it was 64 degrees and falling. Unbelievable. How cold was it? Check out the following photos:
We spent two freezing hours and only had a handful of fish to show for it, so we said screw it -- let's go find the better weather. My in-laws live on Otter Tail Lake in Northwestern Minnesota, where the weather was much, much warmer. So fair-weathered angler that we are, we packed and headed west.
We hit Otter Tail just in time to see the end of the walleye tournament. It seems most of the decent fish were taken early in the day, and the largest was a 6 1/2 pound female.
After watching weigh-in, we hit the water with our guide Denny. We went after some trophy walleyes, as the weather was perfect--slight breeze, slight overcast, and about 70 degrees. An all around nice day and certainly a billion times better than fishing in the freezing cold in Wisconsin.
No fish. We fished hard, four rods in the boat, but nothing to show for it. As my dad says, sometimes you get the bear--sometimes the bear gets you.
Rather then chase walleyes all day, we returned back to home base, got in the pontoon, and decided to hit some wind shielded coves with our fly rods. We got a lot of 6-8 inch sunfish, including some really beautiful punkinseeds.
The next morning we decided to fish the Otter Tail River, below the Phelps Mill dam. We brought out some different fly rods -- my fishing buddy Marc H. was fishing a nine foot Wright & McGill glass rod from the 1960s, and I was using my 7 foot bamboo.
Well, we got some fish on the River but decided to get back in the boat and search out some bass and crappie for our fly rods on Otter Tail Lake. The whole family hit the water and while it was a bit crowded with four fly rods going out at the same time, we managed to make it work.
We hit the weedbeds off shore and switched to some bigger water rods. The daughter used an 8 1/2 foot graphite and was shocked she was able to take some fish!
It was an awesome day of fishing even if the fish weren't the biggest in the world. With the weather warming, we had a fine dinner at Zorbaz on Otter Tail and hit the hay early, intent on a full day of fishing in the morrow.
In Part 2: Wherein Your Intrepid Author Gets In To Some Bass...
-- Dr. Todd