As I write this there is technically a couple days of the musky season left. If this season hadn’t been a fulfilling one, I might be out searching out some open water this week. However, that isn’t the case. This was a really great year with many high points. Sure, there were some stretches where fishing was tough (late September comes to mind immediately). There was also July where scorching weather raised water temps to unsafe levels for musky fishing. This cost most musky fishermen 3 to 4 weeks of fishing. Overall, what I am hearing from other musky fishermen is that this year was average to above average. Which is a nice change from the slow start we had in 2011.
As for the fishing since my last report, it had been decent until the turn that the weather took on Thanksgiving day. Leading up to that, the weather was so mild that I think the fish were starting to bite on an every other day schedule. This sounds weird, but it seemed to be true. One day you’d get follows that were lazy and seemingly impossible to convert to strikes. Then the next day you’d get a few biters. Double Dawgs and suckers were working right up until the bitter end.
Looking back on the numbers that my boat acheived for the 2012 season, it was a pretty good year. I always wish there were more and bigger fish but there really wasn’t much to complain about this year. A little over a 100 fish were caught out of my boat this year. Only 5 over 50″ with the biggest being a 54″ x 26.5″! The best numbers day was a 9 fish day where all fish were caught casting Bulldawgs. I haven’t tabulated how many fish were in each size range yet but I can tell you this, my boat saw a lot of 42″ fish and a lot 45″ as well. These two numbers seemed to be popular for some reason. Another noteworthy statistic is that there more fish eating Bulldawgs this year than any other bait. Usually the number one producer in my boat is bucktails. I also had a good number of clients catch either their first musky or their personal best musky this year. As a guide, those are the very best days you can have!
As we enter the winter a lot you are getting geared up for ice fishing. If you’re like me though, you are really just trying to pass the time until next June. I’m sure it won’t be long before I’m cleaning reels and organizing the piles of baits in my garage. Winter is a great time to organize your boat and your gear. It’s also the time where most musky nuts go crazy reading articles, watching videos and basically just salivating over anything muskies! Then they rush to the musky expo’s and spend way too much money… So if you are the musky nut I’m talking about, be sure to stop by my booth at the MN muskie show this April and talk some fishing. Also, I am now booking dates for the 2013 season. Muskies start in June and I’m booking Smallmouth trips in Wisconsing for the May catch and release season. I had a great season and was very lucky to meet and fish with some really great people this year. I love it!