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1/23/2018 11:45 am  #1


Spring fishing trip ideas

With this warm weather lately I'm really getting eager to get out there on the open water! Ice fishing is fun and all but you can't beat fishing from a canoe!

I likely won't be starting work full-time (seasonal job at an outfitter) until a couple of weeks after ice-out. This means I'll be trying to utilize this time to get in as much paddling as possible, so what better way than a week long solo trip?

In both 2016 and '17 I started my first fishing trip from Rock Lake and did the Welcome/Louisa Circuit. This year I am thinking about doing something a little different and starting from Cache Lake and adding a bit of an extension to the route. Right now I'm thinking about reserving the following lakes :
1-Pardee
2-Rence
3-Pen
4-North Grace (via Louisa to create a 'figure-8')
5-Bonnechere
6-Parkside Bay
This way instead of fighting the current between Welcome/Harry/Rence I'll be going with it, which should make a big difference. Last Spring the water was high and it was a pain getting through there solo with a 17ft canoe. If anyone has any suggestions or recommendations I'd like to hear them. :-) I'm planning to start this trip the weekend of trout opener (April 28), if anyone wants to join me your more than welcome.
Cheers,
Andrew

Last edited by ATVenture (1/23/2018 11:46 am)

 

1/23/2018 6:18 pm  #2


Re: Spring fishing trip ideas

Would love to join, but when you're married with child(ren), the number of camping trips you get in a year is limited. My Spring trip on the east side of the park is probably the only one I'll manage until July. Enjoy unlimited camping while you can!

Your tradeoff to going the right way in the current is possibly having to paddle all of Louisa directly into the teeth of the wind, but I guess the current is for sure and a windy day is a coin toss.. I haven't been on a camping trip south of 60 in quite a few years and you have been more than once recently, so I won't comment on the lakes themselves - you know them better than I do. Under other circumstances I'd say it's a shame to paddle through Louisa twice without spending a night, but it sounds like you've spent time there in the last few years, so I understand the desire to switch things up. 

I hope ice-out cooperates for you!

 

1/24/2018 7:52 am  #3


Re: Spring fishing trip ideas

Uppa wrote:

Would love to join, but when you're married with child(ren), the number of camping trips you get in a year is limited. My Spring trip on the east side of the park is probably the only one I'll manage until July. Enjoy unlimited camping while you can!

Your tradeoff to going the right way in the current is possibly having to paddle all of Louisa directly into the teeth of the wind, but I guess the current is for sure and a windy day is a coin toss.. I haven't been on a camping trip south of 60 in quite a few years and you have been more than once recently, so I won't comment on the lakes themselves - you know them better than I do. Under other circumstances I'd say it's a shame to paddle through Louisa twice without spending a night, but it sounds like you've spent time there in the last few years, so I understand the desire to switch things up. 

I hope ice-out cooperates for you!

Haha, that's another thing. If everything goes as planned this might also be my last season without a child so I have to enjoy it while I can! Haha

I was stuck between Louisa and North Grace for night 4, but last year I spent 6 nights total (on 3 different trips) on Louisa, but I've never camped on North Grace. I seen a picture the other day (cant remember where) of one of the east side sites on North Grace and it looked absolutely spectacular.. so because of that I decided to make it my destination. If however, like you said, the wind decides to be a problem I will probably camp on the East side of Louisa and make the crossing early in the morning. If this were the case I could also head to Bonnechere via Pardee to cut off some time. Tha'ts what I'm liking about this loop is there are many different possibilities based on weather etc.
I'm really hoping it works in a way that when I'm done my solo trip I can join you on your trip on the East side..fingers crossed.

Last edited by ATVenture (1/24/2018 7:52 am)

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1/24/2018 10:50 am  #4


Re: Spring fishing trip ideas

I've been through North Grace a couple of times. It's an intriguing lake from a fishing perspective, but I didn't see this nice campsite you speak of. The ones I saw were kind of scraggly looking with a fair amount of exposure.

Good fishing on this route, though. Shoot me a message if you want/need any tips for locations. By the sounds of it though, you're not a novice.

 

1/24/2018 8:23 pm  #5


Re: Spring fishing trip ideas

Zemantics wrote:

I've been through North Grace a couple of times. It's an intriguing lake from a fishing perspective, but I didn't see this nice campsite you speak of. The ones I saw were kind of scraggly looking with a fair amount of exposure.

Good fishing on this route, though. Shoot me a message if you want/need any tips for locations. By the sounds of it though, you're not a novice.

I can't remember where I seen the photos of the site, I tried finding them earlier to no avail. I'm sure it was one of the Eastern most sites, I think the one with the small lake/pond behind it? I don't even remember what exactly looked so nice about it, I just remember really wanting to go there so that's my plan. Worst comes to worst I know there is at least 1 nice site on McGarvey.
I have been on and fished every lake I plan to visit except North Grace and McGarvey, so any tips for those lakes would be awesome!

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1/24/2018 9:42 pm  #6


Re: Spring fishing trip ideas

I'm thinking about doing my first spring trip if the weather cooperates the first week of May, and I was thinking about a similar route; Cache through Pardee, Frank, Harry, Clydegale, up to Rock. Or possibly Smoke to Bonnechere, McGarvey, Big Porc, back to Smoke. I probably won't decide until the week of, but I'll let you know if I'm going to be in that area... maybe we'll cross paths with a little more luck this time

 

1/25/2018 8:12 am  #7


Re: Spring fishing trip ideas

trippythings wrote:

I'm thinking about doing my first spring trip if the weather cooperates the first week of May, and I was thinking about a similar route; Cache through Pardee, Frank, Harry, Clydegale, up to Rock. Or possibly Smoke to Bonnechere, McGarvey, Big Porc, back to Smoke. I probably won't decide until the week of, but I'll let you know if I'm going to be in that area... maybe we'll cross paths with a little more luck this time

Awesome! From the looks of it you and I both really enjoy this area.. haha.
For whatever reason I still think Pardee is probably one of my favorite lakes to camp on, especially in the shoulder seasons. Bonnechere probably in the summer.
I'm sure we'll cross paths eventually, actually I guess we already did technically. http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/smile.png

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1/25/2018 3:37 pm  #8


Re: Spring fishing trip ideas

ATVenture wrote:

Haha, that's another thing. If everything goes as planned this might also be my last season without a child so I have to enjoy it while I can! Haha

<snip>

I'm really hoping it works in a way that when I'm done my solo trip I can join you on your trip on the East side..fingers crossed.

Congrats in advance! And yes, I'm hoping you're able to make my trip too; I'm looking forward to camping with some AA'ers. 

 

2/18/2018 9:57 am  #9


Re: Spring fishing trip ideas

One of the nicest campsites in that area is the one that Borders Bonnechere and Cradle,   love the big Fire Rock there and great fishing in the nearby lakes.

 

2/19/2018 8:23 am  #10


Re: Spring fishing trip ideas

kenny wrote:

One of the nicest campsites in that area is the one that Borders Bonnechere and Cradle,   love the big Fire Rock there and great fishing in the nearby lakes.

I wanted that site on two occasions last year but it was taken both times.
Instead I ended up getting the one on the south side on the HUGE rocky point which was also amazing, aside from the lack of firewood and 'toilet paper flowers'.

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2/19/2018 10:04 am  #11


Re: Spring fishing trip ideas

I've gone on shore to check out every site on Bonnechere and that cliff site in the south east corner is easily my favourite. It's in my top 5-10 favourite sites. The connecting site between Bonnechere and Cradle is cool because of the fire pit, but that's about it. The tent spots aren't great, and while the view onto Cradle is nice, there isn't much room to sit and actually enjoy that view. It was also particularly buggy when I went. Personally I think the 3 sites in the south are better than all 3 in the north... but hey that's just my opinion

 

2/20/2018 2:13 pm  #12


Re: Spring fishing trip ideas

as stated in another thread we stayed at the southeast campsite for 10 years straight and only stayed at the cradle one as the southeast one was taken, we canoed over to the mainland for fallen deadwood for our firewood.    was just the 2 of us so didn't need much space for tents.    the other thing you spring fisherman need to keep your eyes open for is the ice close to shore ( we use it to keep food cold and Ice for our Drinks ) around the fire at night.     3 different spots on Bonnechere where you can find that.  

 

2/21/2018 6:48 am  #13


Re: Spring fishing trip ideas

kenny wrote:

as stated in another thread we stayed at the southeast campsite for 10 years straight and only stayed at the cradle one as the southeast one was taken, we canoed over to the mainland for fallen deadwood for our firewood.    was just the 2 of us so didn't need much space for tents.    the other thing you spring fisherman need to keep your eyes open for is the ice close to shore ( we use it to keep food cold and Ice for our Drinks ) around the fire at night.     3 different spots on Bonnechere where you can find that.  

Ahh that's a good idea using the ice from shore for drinks!
This weather we have been having is driving my crazy! The way things are going it looks like we might have an early ice out (finally). I think 2012 was the last time it was earlier than average (even though it was a month early)? I was looking on the APP website earlier and it looks like last year around this time we had close to 80cm of snow on the ground, whereas yesterday before we got all the rain we had 32cm... I'm curious to see the #'s after all the rain yesterday/today.
I am considering making my first trip of 2018 a backpacking trip, and on this upcoming weekend. http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/wink.png

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2/21/2018 10:31 am  #14


Re: Spring fishing trip ideas

I,m going to give you my experiences in fishing the Park for as long as we have and also fishing a Lake just south of the Park these last few years.      in our opinion spring Lake Trout fishing is tied directly into water temps and by that I mean changing the slightess to cause a Bug Hatch,  the Lake Trout we did keep for supper or shore lunch we found when cleaning them  the stomach was full of insects,  probably 95% or higher of the Lake Trouts diet.   will give you last years experience,  fished on Friday May 5th,  not a Strike, May 6th  1 fish,  Sunday May 7th, and if anyone remembers that day it was a snow storm,   13 Lake trout caught and released ( slot size on this particular lake ) 10 of those in a bit of a bay, and caught on 3 different types of lures,   usual EGB spoon , a Body bait,  jig and grub,    that tells me there was a bug hatch going on and they where stacked up  in that little spot cramming their stomachs full of bugs and eating anything that moved.   water was 15' deep and fish where caught , basically right on surface to right on bottom,    went back on the on the 10th and not a fish in that part of the lake or a hit for that matter but out in the bigger part of the lake did catch 2 fish that  I figure where roaming around chasing food and also there are a lot of larger rocks in that area,  water is still roughly 15' - 20' deep.    in that time frame the water temp did change by a few degrees.     Hopefully from this you will see it is just  as much about  being in the right place at the right time as it is using the right presentation.   Could say that about most of our spring trips to the park. 

 

2/21/2018 12:16 pm  #15


Re: Spring fishing trip ideas

i think that sand bays and mud flats warm up the quickest in the spring weather, these areas should also host a fly hatch. whitefish too. 50 degree f. 10 c, is prime water temps for spring trout fishing.

 

2/21/2018 3:03 pm  #16


Re: Spring fishing trip ideas

I remember my first spring trip,  A LONG TIME AGO ,   and had read just that  about the sand flats,    buswhacked into a Lake, canoed along and came to a sand flat with Big Rocks and a point,    first cast ,   first  APP  Laker,  thought it was easy,   well some 30 years later found out it's not always that easy. http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/shocked.png
 Now I will say over the years when we  re-visited that Lake we did seem to have success either on the sandy part of the bay or on either side of the Point.     

 

3/06/2018 1:26 pm  #17


Re: Spring fishing trip ideas

Interesting read.... I agree with the "right place right time" comment, you can plan and time your trip to give you a better chance but the weather and environment will be the ultimate factor.  I was in a lake last spring during a record flood (water was colder than normal, hatch was late), the fishing was weird!  The fish were not in their normal hang outs, speckles were nearly impossible to find but we were pulling in BIG lakers in 4ft of water....  Guess I'm guilty of following the same fishing patterns regardless of the environmental clues right in front of me...

 

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