After a recent day trip where we traveled six hours round trip to fish for Steelhead on the Grand River, near Grand Rapids, and have nothing but the smell of skunk in our kayak, I tried to come up with another trip before the winter set in and the 2013 Kayak Fishing Season was over. Remembering that I had chatted with a fellow Hobie Fishing Team Member from Wisconsin about making a trip in late November or December for Steelhead or Brown Trout, I contacted him to let him know that I was still interested in hooking up. Watching the weather closely we came up with a window of a couple of days where the weather looked like it might cooperate enough for us to get out on the water.
With a days notice, a midweek two day trip to Racine, Wisconsin, leaving early AM, fishing the afternoon, and the next morning, driving back home that evening, was going to be the plan. I convinced Craig, another Hobie Team Member to make the trip.
We had an early start clearing customs at the Ambassador Bridge by 6:30am. Five and a half hours later we pulled up to the launch, where Rob had suggested we meet him. He had launched a few hours earlier to see if conditions were good enough to fish. When we pulled up he was already packed up and ready to move on to the next location where he said the launch and harbor were better protected from the wind.
There was a little less wind and we were able to get out on the water somewhat comfortable and fished, throwing some fresh spawn he had brought. We didn’t have any luck so we moved on to trolling in the harbor where we marked a lot of fish, though they were not interested in our presentations. Moving back to throwing spawn near the launch we did hook up into a few feisty Brown Trout.
The plan for Thursday morning was to try and get out for 1st light about a half hour down the road at a different harbor and cast jigs for Brown Trout. The morning was more mild than the previous day without any wind at all and an overcast sky. I was barely into my 1st cast when the first fish of the day was hooked up. Four and half hours later I don’t think more than five minutes went by without someone hooking up to a fish. It was non stop of fiesty Brown Trout in the size range of seventeen to twenty five inches. Most of them chunky football shaped and full of life jumping sometimes up to a half dozen times before you would either lose them or get them in the kayak. My biggest one weighed almost ten pounds and after a lengthy battle spit the hook just as I was netting him, lucky for me he swam into my net.
We wanted to get back on the road to miss the afternoon traffic in Chicago so reluctantly we called it a day and thanked Rob for showing us one of the best mornings of fishing that either of us have experienced.
This is kayak fishing at its best, meeting new friends, fishing with old friends on new water, different cities and for me it was a first time catching Brown Trout.