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Fireside Lodge Weekly Fishing Report
Fireside Lodge Fishing News Report 6/14 to 6/20 2003
Fireside Lodge Fishing News Report 6/14 to 6/20 2003
Hello from the balmy north at Fireside Lodge, where our above normal temperatures and dry weather continue. This was the Smallmouth transition week, where they start leaving their nesting beds and moving into their summer haunts. Despite this, return guest Tom Williams from Tipton, In., and son Tony Williams from Atlanta, In. had a fabulous week Smallmouth Fishing catching near or over 50 Smallmouth per day, and a few days toped the 60 mark. Amongst these numbers were a lot of 14 to 17 inch Smallmouth. They also both caught a Master Anglers Award Smallmouth over 18 inches.
Rick Gebhardt, sons David and Ted, and grandpa Lee Jennings from Mequon, and Milwaukee, Wi. came to Fireside Lodge for their first adventure. Here for 4 days they had a lot of water to cover, and started out by all catching some nice Smallmouth and Rick scoring with a Master Anglers Award Smallmouth at 18 inches. Another day they did decide to take an adventure and walk to a portage lake, and ended up landing over 30 Northern Pike between them. Boy were they all excited with this day as it gave them a feel for the wilderness in the bush, and the boys were very excited about the fast action. Their last day they fished for and caught 26 Northern Pike. Great fun for this group with adventures on the water by day, and family card and board games at night. The boys also celebrated fathers day with their father and grandpa, as they presented them with cards one evening. Great family memories made by these four.
Father William and sons Jon, Joel, and Jason Vande Kopple and friends Robert Rodenhouse, and Aaron and Matt DeGraaf, all from Grand Rapids, Mi., were at Fireside Lodge for their 2 consecutive year. I feel like we have our personal basketball team when this group is here because their average height is about 6'5" with two at 6'7". These guys are big fish maniacs, and they started off with a bang, with Bill catching a 42 inch Master Anglers Northern Pike on their first day. Bill also connected with an 18.5 inch Master Anglers Smallie later in the week, and also Joel caught one at a HUGE 19.5 inches. These fellows fished long hours throughout the week landing a lot of over 30" Pike and some Musky up to the high 30 inch range, Jason catching a huge fat 38" Tiger Muskie. The remarkable thing was when I was talking to them on Friday morning before fishing they said they had an unbelievable amount of big fish follows. The count was somewhere around 163 BIG fish they had seen but could not connect with. Had they caught 1/3 of these there catch of big Northern Pike and Muskie would have been even more unbelievable. Even though most of their efforts were towards fishing for toothy critters, they still caught 247 Smallmouth during their stay. Great week of fishing for these 7, and they hope to be back to complete some unfinished business.
Family Ron, Belinda, and son Shannon Hudson from Mt Vernon, IL., were at Fireside Lodge for their first visit, and were recommended by Ron's mother and father who were with us last year. Well, I was so impressed by this family as they had so much fun enjoying each others company, while fishing and enjoying the wilderness. They caught some nice fish throughout the week and sometimes the fish actually caught the fish. Lindy (Belinda) while fishing one day started to play with the perch which kept following her bait. While she was doing this Ron and Shannon were making fun of her, and all of a sudden and big Smallmouth appeared out of no where and hit her bait. So what do those guys know? Ron's goal was to catch a Muskie or Northern bigger than his mothers because he has had to listen to her talking about her fish all year long. Her Northern was over 40" and her Muskie was 39". Ron came close but missed, which means he will have to listen to his mothers accomplishments for another year. Thanks for coming, and maybe we can see you all together one year.
Larry Falli from Elkhart, In., was back for another of many trips to Fireside Lodge, and this time with friend Brian Donofrio, from Chicago, IL. Well, Larry had a little different schedule this trip as Brian is an early riser, and they went fishing before breakfast every morning. Some mornings proved worthy catching some nice fish and other days they could have waited until after breakfast. In all they did well catching Smallmouth and Northern Pike consistently throughout the week. Larry did catch a Master Anglers Award Smallmouth at 18.5 inches and Brian had a very good first stay at Fireside Lodge.
Ken and Kenny Heflin, from Elmhust, IL., Jim and Bryan O'Toole, from Mokena IL., and Mike and Steven Korbit, from Downers Grove, IL. were all back to Fireside Lodge for their semi annual fathers and sons fishing expedition. Being the third time here a lot of the details of where to go and what to do are planned before they get here, and they are ready to fish immediately. They caught fish on their first night of arrival, and on their first day Kenny caught over 30 Smallmouth Bass and dad Ken caught about 15, up to 17.5 inches. Mike and Steven caught about 30 Smallmouth, and Jim and Bryan caught a mix of Northern Pike and Smallmouth. Their second day Ken and Kenny split, each catching 24 Smallmouth for a total of 48 Smallies, Mike and Steven caught Smallmouth also, but the story of the day here was that Steve caught his 2nd and Largest Muskie at 36 inches. Look for this one on our website. Jim and Bryan caught a lot of Smallmouth, so many that Bryan said that for a 2 hour period of time he could not go for more than a few minutes without catching a Smallmouth. Jim also lost a big Muskie, as it was never hooked, and had his Suick sideways, and spit it back at him right at the boat. They continued to have good fishing on their last two days, and made many father and son memories for the third time. Thanks for returning to Fireside Lodge to add to your memory book.
Lee Meyer from Willard, Oh and Tim Casler from Heath, Oh, were back at Fireside lodge again and this time brought friends Michael Brockway from Granville, Oh. and Roger Bentley from Newark, Oh. These four caught 27 Smallmouth on their first day, and continued to do good throughout the week catching Smallmouth and Northern Pike. Lee and Tim teamed up another day for 24 Smallmouth, and some Northern Pike in the evening. All four had a fun trip and Mike and Roger got the hang of our lake system in a few days and were all smiles by the end of the week. Great having you guys back.
Ron Dombrowski and son Brian from Crest Hill and Chicago, IL. were back for their 9th trip to Fireside Lodge. Wonderful to have these two back, as this has become like a second home to them. Ron recently was handed one of life's many challenges, and because of this both him and Brian were especially thankful to be fishing at Fireside Lodge one more time. These two did very well as always, catching Smallmouth Bass, (Brian an 18" Master Anglers Smallmouth), and Northern Pike. However, as things change in life so does your perspective on how you look at things. For example with Ron and Brian the fishing was only one of the reasons they came to Fireside, and was not the all important thing. Things that ranked right up their with fishing was seeing the sun rise to make the water glisten in the morning, and watch it set over the trees at night. Sitting on the lodge screened in porch, playing a friendly game of cards while listening to the call of the loons, and just being at Fireside and enjoying a father and son relationship. Yes they caught and lost a lot of fish, but their biggest catch was the memories at this very small moment in time. Thanks for choosing Fireside to be your home away from home, and part of your life long memory log, as Ron and Brian will always be a part of Fireside Lodges memory book.
Another father and son Ron and Nick Tracy, from Chicago and East Peoria, IL. were at Fireside Lodge for their first fishing adventure. During their 4 day stay they progressively did better and better on the catching side of fishing. Staying in the lodge does have its benefits, and Ron and Nick became acquainted with long time guests Ron and Brian above, and with some advise from them increased their daily catch of Smallmouth and Northern Pike. By the last two days they were catching a lot of fish and made some new friends at the same time.
Dan Brady from Lunenburg, Ma. brought his father David from Charabasco, In., for their first trip to Fireside Lodge, and for David's first fishing trip like this ever. Well, they had a great time catching some great Northern Pike and Smallmouth Bass, and David caught his first Northern Pike ever. They had a fabulous time and I still can picture David's smiling face when he would come to my tackle shop daily and tell me of his experiences on the water. Dan was very proud, as he should have been, at the end of the trip that he was able to take his dad on such a fishing adventure. Time is very short and you have to take advantage of it while you can, and these two did. Thanks for choosing Fireside Lodge.
Another father and son combination Don and Chip Wheelock, from Overland Park, Ks and Fargo, ND. were at Fireside Lodge. Chips first time but not so for Don. Don was actually at our place in 1941!!!! No, that's not a typo error, he was here in 1941, so imagine the changes he has seen at Fireside Lodge. He was also here a few years ago with another group of guys. Here for only three days they had an active trip, on the water fishing a lot. They started slow the first day, but caught 20 nice Northern Pike and lost a lot with a lot of follows on the second day. Third and last day was the grand finally catching over 30 nice Pike and landing 3 Muskie, with Don catching a BIG FAT 39.5 inch Muskie. Great action and great catching for these two in such a short stay.
Jeff Jenkins headed a group from Bowling Green, Ky. including Bill Haley, Cecil Whitehead, and Don Dew. Never being on the lake system before they spent the first few days getting aquatinted with the lakes and figuring out what the fish were doing. When they figured it out did they ever get to catching. Jeff and Bill really cleaned up with them having great fishing and catching on three days in a row. Day 1: 64 Northern Pike 10 Smallmouth and each caught a Muskie. Day 2: 74 Northern Pike and Jeff landed 2 more Muskie. Day 3: 50 Pike. In between catching all these toothy critters Jeff managed to catch a Master Anglers Award Smallmouth at 18 inches. Don Dew and Cecil did not catch as many, but caught their share and had whole lot of fun doing it. I got a big kick out of Jeff's poker face. Every day when back from fishing he would look down and say "I'm Disappointed" then in a few seconds would break out in a smile and tell the truth. Well, the first time he fooled me, but after that I read him like a book. Thanks for choosing us and hope to see you all again soon.
Last but not least for this weeks fishing report were Don Landbo from South Elgin, IL. and Joe Sr, Dan, and Joe Szkola, from Elk Grove Village and Sugar Grove, IL. Here for a short 4 days Don did not waste any time as on his first day catching the Northern Pike of his life, and most peoples lives by landing a 43.5 inch Master Anglers Award fish. WOW what a catch and what a start to a great fishing trip. Second day brought Don and Dan catching 24 Northern Pike up to 36 inches, while Joe Sr and Joe caught 12 and lost a lot of fish. The next day these two caught 15 and had a ball loosing a lot of fish again, and Dan and Don also lost a bunch but landed 32 Northern Pike. On their last day all had a good day of fishing and Don became a Master Angler in another category catching an 18.75 inch Smallmouth Bass. Great time by these guys, and they said they would definitely be back for more fast action fishing and fun at Fireside Lodge.
That is all for this weeks Fireside Lodge fishing action, so until next week "Keep On Fish'n" Alan