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Island Lake

August 4, 2013
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Finally, summer temperatures and humidity have arrived.  We’ve received a fair amount of rain lately, which is good given last year’s dry conditions.  Most lakes seem to be high and have flooded grass and some trees around the shore.

For some reason I’ve always wanted to catch a catfish so I grabbed a few Power Bait catfish snacks and assorted gear at a local sporting goods store. I then did a little research online and decided upon Island Lake.  According to the MN DNR it regularly stocks Island Lake with catfish and given the lakes small size it seemed like a good shot.  Island Lake is a lake that I had not fished up until now so I was excited to give it a go. Not only are there catfish, but bass, musky and walleye, so it presents a variety of options. There is not a lot of mid-lake structure, nor is it very deep.  There are two basins and the north basin always looks appealing from a bass fishing perspective, i.e., lots of slop, timber, some docks, etc.  Everything seemed to be aligning until the day before when a front rolled through providing blue skies and windy conditions.  Then my meeting ran late so I was kind of scrambling when I arrived.

With time and daylight running out fast (amazing how time flies when you are trying to have fun) I didn’t stick with the catfish effort too long.  I was probably overconfident and thought it would be too easy but it was extremely weedy.  Keeping the bait weed free was next to impossible.  I was so confident that the catfish would cooperate that I left my voluminous tackle box at home which was a big mistake since I was limited to the few lures I had lying about in the Pelican Raider, two spinner baits and a jig head.  I started with the jig head figuring that the weather conditions called for a slow, natural presentation that worked well until a pesky northern pike sawed it off on the first cast leaving only the spinner baits.  Fortunately, I was able to nab one little scrappy bass before I left. It wasn’t one of my better outings.  It wasn’t one of my better outings in a lot of ways,

Poor preparation, over confidence, and just an overall feel of unease.  The unease came from the fact that Highway 694 splits the lake in two and there was no way to escape the constant roar of cars, trucks, horns and other traffic noise. I’m sure that this lake holds some potential but I’ll have to think long and hard before I give it another shot.  Part of the fishing is experience the sound of nature, the serenity it provides and just the general feeling of being able to transport oneself away from the hustle and bustle, all of which was lacking from Island Lake.

– Hats

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