Fishing Real Estate

Hawk Lake Lodge, Day Two: The Mouse that Roared

Sandy is inordinately happy with his mouse-caught smallmouth on Cliff Lake.
Picture by Phil Monahan

Our second morning at Ontario’s Hawk Lake Lodge dawned shiny and heat–it a carbon copy of the day past–and we determined to fish Paddy Lake for smallmouths. One of many 19 lakes that the lodge has entry to, Paddy is only a five-minute boat trip and a five-minute hike from the dock. Our information for the day was Jeff Blum, a passionate fly fisherman with a level in wildlife biology, who made for a captivating boatmate.

We did run into one other grouse on the path between the lakes, however this one was a male that didn’t appear intent on murdering us. Curiously, it was a brown-phase grouse, which is fairly uncommon within the covers had been I hunt birds every fall.

My belief diver sample attracted this acrobatic smallie on my first forged of the day.
Picture by Sandy Hays

One of many cool issues we’re discovering concerning the lakes fished by HLL is that every has its personal, distinctive character. Whereas Wolf Lake featured lots of shallow bays, reefs, and submerged factors, Paddy Lake is rockier, with some very steep drop-offs near shore.

We began off with topwater patterns, and I caught a bronzeback on my very first forged with a trusty diver sample that I’ve had for years. The bug had barely landed on the water when a fish smashed it. Just like the day earlier than, although, the floor patterns labored early however then grew to become much less efficient because the solar bought larger. We switched to subsurface stuff–Sandy casting baitfish patterns, whereas I labored a crayfish-colored Wiggle Bug that dove with each strip.

This pair of loons gave their chick a trip as they slowly cruised away from the boat.
Picture by Sandy Hays

As we labored our approach alongside the shoreline, we picked up bass in quite a lot of totally different sorts of water, from rock gardens to downed timber, although the fish had been smaller on common than they’d been on Wolf Lake. For the second day in a row, we had a complete lake to ourselves and loved the sensation of being alone within the wilderness.

After a shore lunch of contemporary walleye and potatoes, Jeff took us to Cliff Lake, which is linked to Hawk Lake and truly has some houses alongside its shore. We switched again to topwater flies and completed the day with some killer motion, though I developed a little bit of a hooking downside. I’m way more accustomed to fishing for largemouths, which assault with extra aggression, and Jeff instructed that I delay my strip-strike a bit, which appeared to resolve issues.

A “spiked-up” smallmouth provides a compelling profile.
Picture by Sandy Hays

Those that have adopted my travels with Sandy over time know that there’s nothing he loves greater than fishing mouse patterns. Jeff was a bit skeptical till the primary bass smashed the deer-hair mouse because it got here via some weeds. Sandy took a number of extra on the mouse, fishing up with the fish of the day, simply earlier than we needed to head again to the lodge.

It was one other productive day, with 12 or 15 bass to the boat and some dandies that we didn’t land. Our remaining day can be in pursuit of northern pike, which must be a blast.

Click on right here to examine Day One.

This bronzeback didn’t get so fats by consuming tiny meals. It needed that mouse fairly badly.
Picture by Sandy Hays

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