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Juls WFA Blog

Fishing with the Dell Family 6/1/2020

by Capt Juls on 06/01/20

I arrived at Mazurik's about 40 minutes before John, Steve (Pops), and Dan were to arrive for our 6am launch. I readied the boat, and picked the baits I wanted to start with, which was pretty much the same as the ones I ended the day with yesterday. 

The guys showed up and I put them in the boat. This morning was a treat, as Capt Sam, who runs "Porkchop Express", offered to dump us in. I should say, it was a treat until he started to back us in and I felt that telltale sign of a strap not getting removed from the back starboard side. "Ugh! Hold up!" I yelled. "Pull us out". He pulled forward and I went to try and undo the strap, but there was too much tension on it from the boat not being up on the roller all the way, so I had him back us in again, so I could get the boat back on the trailer as best I could. He pulled out again and Dan was able to get it unhooked. Whew! "Ok, Sam...back us in again". This time, all went as it was supposed to.  I turned to Pops, who was in the passenger seat and said, "This doesn't usually happen. Geez, I feel like an amateur!" He giggled and said, "It happens to the best of them". 

So crises averted....we headed to the west this time. I wanted to look at the west side of Scott Point Shoal on the way to South Bass Island and see if there were any marks on the Helix that would entice me to set down there. There were, but I think my intuition kicked in and I felt heading north would be better.  I didn't want to fish in that pack that's up there every day, so we stopped north of Starve and set up on some good marks.

Bandits 85, 71, and 63 on one side and the Mag 44's on the other. It wasn't long though and the Bandits were getting hit, but the Mags weren't, so I swapped them out for three more Bandits. Colors were (2) Attention Deficit (Domka color), Glare (stock), Chrome Barbie (JT Customs color), Stormy Night (Off The Hook color), and Sunspot (stock, I think?). Speed was 1.8-2.1mph.

At one point towards the end of our limit, I noticed the fish moving down in the water column, and wanted to get a bait down to 25 feet. So, looking at the snap weight info for the Bandit on the Precision Trolling Data app. it said, "74". I explained to them how the 50 / 2oz method works and had them put a snap weight on at 50 feet, then let out another 24 feet of line ...for a total of 74 feet. That put the bait at 25 feet. 

It wasn't out a minute and took a nice fish. So, of course, I had them switch up the inside board on the other side of the boat too, and it wasn't long before that one also took a fish. 

We finished out our 24 fish limit in 2 1/2 hours. The guys learned a ton, and were getting the hang of it, so they can confidently run Off Shore boards in their own boat now and catch fish too. They said they had never caught a limit until today, and were all very happy with their results.  It was a good morning, and I'm thankful for the beautiful weather we had this morning too! 

Tomorrow is a blow day. My customer has decided to reschedule to the 2021 season instead.

I have a three day trip with a Wisco crew that I have fished with several times now over the years, so I'm looking forward to that. The weather forecast for Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday looks pretty good.....so, my fingers are crossed that it stays that way. :)

Stay tuned....

Capt Juls

Fishing with Tom Sr., Tom Jr., and Rob 5/31/2020

by Capt Juls on 06/01/20

I was ready to meet my customers, Tom Felle, along with his Dad Tom Sr., and his brother Rob at 9am at Mazurik's for a 9am launch. Yes, it was a later launch than my usual 5:30 routine, but the winds from the night before were still blowing out of the NW at a pretty good clip.  At 7am, I was getting restless, so I looked at the wind app again, and it showed it slowing down an hour earlier than it was originally forecast to, so I sent a text to the guys and told them to meet me for an 8am launch instead.

We headed out, and around the break wall, to head north. The wind was around 12mph out of the NNW, so it wasn't going to be a fast ride to the fishing grounds I chose for the day.  

The Helix would show me some fish south of Lucy's Point and East of Ballast Island.
I turned the boat, so we were going with the waves, and deployed the Ulterra and the baby ETEC and set a speed of 1.8 to 2.2mph. 

I set out Bandits on one side and some Reef Runner Mag 44's on the other side. Bandits were out 85, 71, and 63 back. The Mags were back 65, 60, and 50.  We landed 5 fish in the first short pass, so the guys were able to learn to set lines and bring in fish from the outside board without tangling, and became good at it. My mind was racing, and wondering if I should stay there and deal with all the other boats up there, or go someplace else? I decided to go someplace with less traffic.

A friend told me of a better spot out of the wind on the lee side of an island. ( I'm not at liberty to give that info...it's not mine to give)....so, we picked up and headed there. We set up and ran a contour line for about 15 minutes before I decided to head back east to where I was the previous two trips.  It's a spot all to myself, and there isn't another boat within miles. There soon will be though, becasue it's a popular spot every summer. ;)

We made a tolling pass from the NW to the SE and caught the rest of their limit. Yesterday, the Mag 44's out produced the Bandits in that area 2:1. But, I can't confirm if they would have done so on the other side of the boat. Sometimes, current can do weird things and fish will only hit on one side of the boat, it seems. Once the boat turns a certain way in the current, both sides produce. My Ex, used to refer to that as "Changing the angle of the dangle".  

To make a long story short...my Wisco crew enjoyed the day out on the lake and were happy to be taking home some Lake Erie walleye.

Tomorrow, I have John Dell, his Dad Steve, and his brother Dan. We have a 6am launch set, to let Papa-San can sleep an extra half hour in the morning. 

Stay tuned...

Capt Juls

Fishing Day 2 with Dan Pierce and Rocky Sofolo 5/29/2020

by Capt Juls on 05/29/20

My dog Dexter woke me up at 2:30 to go outside, and it was too close to my alarm going off at 3am to go back to sleep, so I got up and took advantage of the extra time to check the weather this time, before heading over to Mazurik's to meet Dan and Rocky for their second day of fishing. It looked like it might rain, so I grabbed the rain suit and headed out the door.  I was meeting the guys at the ramp at 5:15 this morning.

We launched at 5:30, turned on the navigations lights, headed east, and got set up with the Bandit program from the day before, before the sun was peaking over the horizon.

The Helix was showing fish all over the water column again, but it was a slow bite. After three fish on the Bandits I decided to try showing those tiny brained finny creatures the old standard...the crawler harness.  We changed everything up to 1 and 2oz inline weights, because I didn't have my Tadpoles in the boat, and set them out behind the Off Shore boards.

The 1oz at 41 back took a hit first, but the fish released itself before we got the board off. Then, the 2oz at 47 back started taking fish. Rocky wanted to get down to the deeper fish on the screen, so we put a 3 oz on at 70 back and it wasn't long before that one had a nice fish on. We would end up changing things up to run four 3oz weights between 60-70 back and two 2oz weights at 42 and 47 back.  It was a little faster bite than the Bandits were for us, but it still wasn't a fast bite. It was just fast enough to keep us in the area though. At one point, I had asked them if they wanted to move, but Rocky reminded me of the old saying, "You don't leave fish to find fish",  and adding "I'm having a good time, let's just stay here". So we did.

We had their limit earlier, but the last fish of my limit was taking forever, and would never come, so we headed in. They said they had a great time, and Dan will be back in a couple weeks to fish with me again, but this time he will be bringing his wife along. I'm looking forward to meeting her. :)

Tomorrow, I have Luke Molebash and his crew. Looks like the winds will be out of the WNW this time, so it might be time to change my location to the islands again. 

Stay tuned...

Capt Juls

Fishing Day 1 with Dan Pierce and Rocky Sofolo 5/28/2020

by Capt Juls on 05/28/20

This was probably one of the first mornings, where I got ready to leave the house and never checked the weather. I thought it was supposed to be like yesterday, so I never bothered. Luckily, I always take my rain gear on the boat, because we needed it this morning.

There were little sprinkles of water on the windshield of the old Excursion as I drove to town this morning, so I looked at my RadarScope app to see what was up. There was a big blob of green and yellow moving across the radar screen, and headed directly towards this part of the lake....sigh.  
I hate it when the boat gets all wet.  Yes, yes, I know..."They sit in water, so are meant to get wet."  I just don't like everything inside the boat to be all wet. It messes with my anality (I think I just made up that word) of keeping the boat clean. lol

We were waiting at Mazurik's for about a 1/2 hour, to let the dark gray sky lighten up some, and let the gusty winds die a little. The wind was out of the SE with gusts to 20mph this morning. The air temp was in the mid 50's.

At 6am we launched and headed east out of the ramp. Waves were 2 feet or less in Sandusky Bay and east of Marblehead, so it was an easy ride. I watched the Helix as we traveled across the open water looking for a telltale sign of aquatic life down below. Once she started marking fish, (which look like little red dots on my screen), I would lay down a waypoint, if I marked a bunch... then, kept traveling east along a contour line to see how far I could mark them.  Once I ran out of fish, I turned the boat and deployed the Ulterra and baby ETEC. The trolling motor steered the boat with the auto-pilot function, and in conjunction with the 15 kicker, they pushed the boat along at a speed of 1.7-1.9mph.

**I find, when trolling with the waves, that keeping a back corner of my Ranger pointed at the oncoming waves is easier to keep a set speed, if one is needed.

Dan and Rocky have never used Off Shore boards before, so they hired me to show them how to troll with them.  They were fast learners and made my job easy today! We caught our three person limit on Bandits again.  Chrome Barbie (JTC color), Glare (Stock color), that new one I don't know the name of and can't find online. (I only know it's a JT Custom color that I bought at the Wharf), Attention Deficit (Domka Color), and RC Crush (DJs Custom Eye Lures).

If I think of it, tomorrow, I'll take a pic of that JT color, when we're in the boat.

We also ran a couple shallow running cranks on the dipsies....nothing to report there. They did nothing.

At one point of the morning...my Humminbird's both shut down and I couldn't figure out why it happened. Rocky, however, is an electrician and said it was a power problem.

I said, "I know the batteries were all charged before I left the house, so I don't understand".

At first, I thought it was just the back unit going bonkers, but when I saw that the dash unit had turned off too, I started to panic a little, because that would mean the starting battery was bad. I immediately when to fire up the big motor to make sure it had juice to start. It didn't. Aaarrrgggh....noooooo!

Then, I went to the main power switch to switch the lever, so I could jump the big motor. 

Then, I saw it, I had the switch in the wrong spot. I had it on 2 instead of 1, so it wasn't getting the power it needed to run everything.  Once I switched it back to position 1, everything worked again. Whew!  Crisis averted. With a sigh of relief, we went back to fishing. :)

It wasn't a crazy fast bite, but it was fast enough to keep us in that area. We had a good time, and will be going out to repeat the experience tomorrow. We are meeting at Mazurik's at 5:15.

Stay tuned....

Capt Juls

Fishing with Bruce Kowalski and Chris 5/25/2020

by Capt Juls on 05/25/20

Happy Memorial Day! :)

I had a panic attack at the ramp this morning. My old 2001 Excursion decided to lock up the transmission, so Bruce couldn't shift it into reverse when he went to back the Ranger in the water.

I gave Matt Wieland a call, because he's my mechanic and also a charter Capt, who I knew was going to be headed out on the water shortly too. I was hoping he could just tell me how to fix it, so I could get my rig out of the first ramp, because it was starting to get busy. I didn't want to be "that person" who gets yelled at for blocking a ramp. lol

Anyway, Matt couldn't do anything, because they were already headed out of their channel, but his advice was helpful. He talked to Chris on my phone and the plan would be that Bruce would go get his truck, tie it to my truck, and pull it forward to take the tension off the transmission. Fingers crossed and a deep breath, it inched forward.....I stepped on the break and tried to shift it....it worked! Whew!
Good to know, so if it ever happens again, I can just start swearing and not have to panic. lol

Once that drama was over, we headed out....to the west this time. We started at Mouse and headed towards Starve. But, we didn't stay longer than 1/2 hour as the marks were too spotty for my liking, and we headed north to the monument again.

We ran Bandits 60-75 back at 1.8-19mph and picked up 7 fish there. It was a slow bite for us, but a faster bite for a friend of mine running Reef Runner Mags and Flicker Minnows. I put three flickers on one side, and ran his faster speed, but they did nothing for us, while the Bandits still did, so we replaced them again with the Bandits. 

Then, someone in a Ranger went flying by us to head back to South Bass (I think they were probably staying out there on the island?) and as they went by they motioned "Go East"! So, we said, "Why not?" Since the boat traffic by the monument was stacking up, we picked everything up and headed east. :)

We set  up on the SW corner of Gull to start and picked up two fish in relatively short order, but then nothing. I decided to pick up again and head to the east side of Kelly's. I didn't stop at KI Shoal, because I was there yesterday and wasn't too impressed. We headed down towards the Airport Reef area and set up again. We had a pullback, but a miss, before the second line was set, so I had high hopes.

We picked up two more, but it was slow. It wasn't until we were further south that we would get the rest of our fish. And, it was always a double on when they did come. We would catch two, then wait....then, catch two more...then, wait...then, catch two more. We kept turning on the active spot and finished out our three person limit there.  

The water temp finally hit 60 degrees today in the deeper water, so the west end must be getting even warmer and those fish stacked up over there in the muddier water will be moving soon...woot! woot!

Today felt more like the year 2012 to me, when we had to hunt for a pod of fish and then stay on them by doing small circles...unlike last year, where you could do one long pass and be done.  

Yes, I know there are folks whacking them very easily in areas, and some of those areas are jam packed with boats. I won't do the pack fishing, because it makes me irritable, and that's not a fun day for me or for my customers.

Today, was a relaxing day to teach two perch fishermen how to troll. They did all the work setting the Off Shore boards out, so they would know how to do it when they tried it on their own boats. They did a great job, and had it down pat by the second to last fish. Mission accomplished! ;)

I'm off tomorrow, but I will be out fishing. Capt Jenn and I are going to catch some fish for the Eagles at the "Back to the Wild" wildlife rescue in Castalia.

My trip for Wednesday is up in the air at the moment too. It's two of my favorite regulars and "Papa" is not sure he wants to fish if there are bugs like we experienced two days ago on the lake (I can't blame him..it takes a lot of mind over matter to fish with them trying to go up your nose and in your mouth and ears all the time).  The wind forecast is showing some wind now, so they may change their minds and come. I'll know tomorrow....

Stay tuned....

Capt Juls

Fishing with Todd and Josh Brooksher 5/24/2020

by Capt Juls on 05/25/20

Todd and Josh Brooksher met me at Mazurik's at 5:15, and we were headed out of the launch at 5:30. We were on a mission to find big fish, and not numbers, (though both would have been nice), so I headed NE of Kelly's to see if there were fish up at the old international C can. There wasn't another boat in sight yet, so I was hoping the fish would be there, and we could get some passes in before anyone else showed up. 

I was disappointed to find the Helix showing the area void of fish, so I made the decision to move back down to Kelly Island Shoal to make a pass along the west side edge.

We trolled with Bandits anywhere from 50 to 75 back at a speed of 1.8-1.9mph, and picked up 6 eaters for the cooler.  When Josh brought his first one in, his dad said, "That's his first walleye, ever!" Josh just smiled, and explained to me about all the other fish species he's caught over the years, and how this is his first walleye. 

Josh has served 13 years in the military and was sent up for 5 tours, and told me he was hard of hearing, due to mortars going off too close, so if he asked for something to be repeated, that was why. I wanted to hug him, but this stupid virus has us all staying apart these days. 

Anyway....long story shorter....we moved to several areas around the lake that I thought might have some big fish, and we never hooked up with a big one.  After Kelly's we hit the Canadian line west of Middle Island, the north side of North Bass Island, the west side of Middle Bass, and then ran out of time....one short of a limit.  

They had a great time, and took to running the Off Shore boards very easily, since they are both pretty skilled anglers, so that made me happy. Todd will be back in June to fish with me, and will be bringing along a friend of his. I'm looking forward to that.

Tomorrow, I am fishing with Bruce Kowalski and his friend, Chris, from Toledo. We'll be launching from Mazruik's at 5:30 again.

Stay tuned...

Capt Juls

Fishing with Dean and Bruce Day Two 5/23/2020

by Capt Juls on 05/23/20

Woke up at 3am, and looked out the back door to check the weather. The fog was thick and it felt like it was in the mid 50's. Well, it is what it is. I don't necessarily like fishing in the fog, as the danger level rises, but it's doable when caution is observed.

This morning, I met Dean and Bruce at Mazurik's at 5:30 and launched as soon as a lane at the ramp became available. We headed back to the last spot we fished yesterday and set the Bandits out 60-70 back at a speed of 1.8mph.  Colors were (2) Glare, Green Clown, and (2) of a color I just picked up at Fisherman's Wharf...I think it's a JT Custom Bandit, but I can't find the color on the internet and I bought the only two they had. It's blueish with a bit of white and black splotches with an orange belly, and a gold splattering of vertical strips all over it. It's one of those Custom colors that I would usually say, "That one will catch more fishermen than fish". I fell for it myself, and I'm glad I did, because it's a fish catching color. lol

We started catching right away and on the third fish, I decided at the last second not to use the net, because it was only 17-18" fish, and swing it in. Well, just as I was going in for the hold, it decided it was going to give one last attempt at freedom and stuck a treble hook in my thumb....ugh.

With another fish hanging out there behind an Off Shore board, I asked Dean to take the fish off the hooks, and had Bruce grab the cutters out of the glove box. Then, Bruce snipped that part of the treble that was sticking in my thumb, so I could keep fishing if I couldn't yank it out. With one attempt at yanking it, I decided to just leave it and deal with it later.  It wasn't long after that we had all the rods in the boat and 6 fish in the box.

We had our three person limit by 8:15 and, because of the horrendous Midge hatch, no wind, and all the thick fog, we decided to head in, so they could get some breakfast and get the fish cleaned before heading back home.

I called my friend, who's a doctor and told him what happened. He told me to go meet him at his office and he would yank it for me. He gave my thumb a shot and froze it, so I wouldn't feel it getting pulled out. Luckily he had enough of the shank to get a good grip and it pulled out more easily than he thought it would.  It actually hurts more now that it's out than when the hook was in there.  I think I'll use the net from now on. lol

Tomorrow, I'll be fishing a new area, because it's time to go find new fish. That's part of the fun of fishing. Using my Helix to locate them... away from everyone, and then getting them in the boat. 
With that said, I would just like to remind (and, I don't mean this to be harsh)....don't expect me to always give you the location, because that's not always going to happen. I'd like to think that these blogs have helped you become better anglers and have given you the confidence to go out there and put the work in to locate them yourselves too.  It's a great feeling when you can do that.  There are fish just about everywhere right now, and will be for the next few months, so just go out...use your electronics to find some, check your Precision Trolling App for the depth and set up. 
I will continue to give you the program that is working each day though.
I hope you understand. :)

Tomorrow, I am fishing with a father and Son team, and will be launching at Mazurik's at 5:30 again.  The weather forecast is calling for scattered showers and thunderstorms in the morning, but it's only a 30% chance, so I like our chances.

Stay tuned....

Capt Juls

Fishing with Dean Wallsmith and Bruce 5/22/2020

by Capt Juls on 05/22/20

This morning was a drizzling rain with temps in the mid 50's. I was meeting Dean and Bruce at Catawba at 5:30.  I left the house at 4:30, so I could go gas up the Ranger and grab some ice and minnows at Hi Way Bait. I figured if we caught our 18 walleye in a quick fashion that we could go look for some perch.

We floated the boat at 5:45 and headed west from the launch. We set up with Bandits in 18' of water at a speed of 1.8mph. The Bandits were set between 30 and 60 back on each side, and dialed into 35 back when just about every fish hit the lure at 35. It was a bit slow, we only had 15 in two hours, so I decided to head north to the islands to look for some perch. I figured we would probably catch a few walleye on the minnows too, so those last three we needed were left open for that. 

However, when we got up to the "Triangle" between the Bass Islands, the water looked pretty good, and there were marks on the Helix here and there, so we set up with the trolling spread one more time to make a pass through there. My perch spot for this time of year was just up around the corner between Middle Bass and North Bass, so we trolled in that direction.  

We did that for about 20 minutes before I said, "Let's go perch'n. We can always troll another spot for the last three walleye if the perch don't cooperate."

Well, the perch spot didn't pan out. Dean and Bruce each caught a sheepshead in 20 minutes, and that was it. So, we picked up and headed east of the Bass Islands and set up east of the monument to get those last three walleye. 

This time the Bandits were set out 60-75 back and it wasn't long before we were watching the Off Shore boards go back with the telltale sign of a fish on.  We played catch and release for the next hour and then headed in to take the fish over to Bay's Edge to be cleaned.

Dean and Bruce will be fishing with me again tomorrow, so I think this time we will be launching at Mazurik's and heading north from there.

Water temps are rising...we noted 55 degrees today.

Tomorrow's weather is supposed to be nicer than today, so it should be an even more fun day that today was. :)

Stay tuned....

Capt Juls

Fishing with Jeff and Nathan Carden 5/16/2020

by Capt Juls on 05/16/20

Got up at 3am, to check the wind forecast, and make sure it didn't change for the worse...then, texted my guys to let them know we were still on for this morning. 

I was meeting Jeff Carden and his son, Nathan, at Catawba at 5:45. Nathan follows me on Facebook and set this up  for his Dad. They come up every year, this same week.  They had brought their boat up, but wanted to go with me the first day, and run cranks, because they usually run crawler harnesses when they've been here in the past. I was happy that Mother Nature allowed us a decent morning before the stronger NE winds move in later this afternoon.

We set out of Catawba at 6am and headed towards Green Island. There was patchy fog on the lake, but it wasn't too bad.  The winds were very light out of the NE, and the air temp was in the 50's. Water temp was 50.9 degrees.

We set up between South Bass Island and the south side of Green in 30' of water. The Ulterra and the baby ETEC were deployed and I set the course with the Ulterra's auto-pilot to the NW at 1.7-1.9 mph.  

Bandits were set out at 70 back on the outside boards, 60 in the middle, and 40 on the inside behind Off Shore boards. Colors were (2) Glare, Green Clown, Chart Wonderbread, Chrome Barbie, and Sunspot.  Jeff was letting out his second line when the first fish hit, so I thought it was good sign of things to come, but it wasn't.  We trolled that line for about 20 minutes, and the marks on the Helix disappeared, so I said, "Let's go to another spot I like up this way". 

We headed up between the islands, to what I refer to as the "Triangle". It's the area between South Bass, Middle Bass, and Rattlesnake Islands. We set up with the same program, but changed out the 40 to 50 back.  It was game on. We caught steady, and some point I told them to put everything out at 60 back, and then it was doubles and triples going...Woot! Woot!. :)

We had our 18 fish in just a little over an hour in that spot. Jeff and Nathan had a ball, and I asked, "So, do you like running cranks over crawlers?" Nathan nodded his head, approvingly, laughed, and said, "Oh yeah! I like this!" Jeff agreed. 
I said, smiling, "If I can catch them on cranks, and don't have to deal with all the mess, that's what I'm going to do, every time". 

Since they had just got into town this morning, and still needed to clean the fish and go unpack, they thought it was a good idea to get our limits and head in, before the wind changed. However, now that I'm sitting on land, I don't think the gusts they were forecasting is going to happen. Which is nice, because there are a lot of boats out there today. :)

My trip for tomorrow was rescheduled, and I'm watching the forecast for my two-day trip for Monday and Tuesday. It looks like Tuesday is a blow, so they may reschedule both days. We shall see....

Stay tuned....

Capt Juls

Fishing with Mark and David Senter 5/13/2020

by Capt Juls on 05/13/20

Today, was my first paying trip since we got locked down by the state back in early April. When I woke up this morning, I thought I would be tired, but as soon as I realized what day it was, my adrenaline popped me right up out of bed.  I didn't even need any coffee this morning either, which is unusual. 

I was meeting my Father and Son duo at Catawba at 6am.  I threw some of that Wisconsin Venison sausage that customer, Chris Utter, brings down every spring, along with some crackers, and water into the cooler, and headed to the gas station to gas up. I was disappointed that the Speedway has changed their hours due to this virus situation, because they aren't open early enough for a gal like me. lol So, I had to go a bit out of the way to go gas up someplace else and grab some ice. Oh well....it is what it is, right?

I got to Catawba at 5:20...a little early, because I wanted to check the lines for nicks or kinks, and cut some off if needed. I also wanted to change up some Bandit colors on the 6 rods.  I chose Glare, Green Clown, Chrome Barbie, RC Crush, Chart Wonderbread, and Sunspot to start with. It basically covers all of the color spectra. 

Mark and David showed up at the ramp about the time I did, but because it was dark, they didn't realize it was me. Mark sent me a text to let me know they were in the parking lot, and since there was only me and one other boat in the big parking lot, and two cars in the side lot parking, it was easy to find them.  We launched at 6.

I asked, "So, have either of you ever used Off Shore inline planer boards before?" David said, "No...never have". As I watched Mark arrive on the dock to jump in, I said, "Okay, I'll show you  how then."

I was a little worried about the way they were dressed for a chilly morning on a lake that's only 48-49 degrees right now, and asked about it, but they said they would be fine, so off we went.

We headed over to the Clinton Reef area to check it out first. I figured if the fish were there, they wouldn't get as cold as if we headed out in the more unprotected areas of the open water with an east wind.  

We set the Bandits out 45 on the outside board, 35 on the middle board, and 25 on the inside board and ran a speed, up and down from 1.6-1.9mph. The Helix was marking fish from time to time,  but they weren't stacked up in there like it can from time to time, so we left. We headed up to the Green Island area. Bandits were run at 75/70/65 back.

For first time board users, they did a fantastic job and within two hours were working like a well-oiled machine.  The bite was not fast and furious, but it was a nice steady bite, and kept the morning interesting.

I lost one Chrome Barbie though, when it got caught on the prop (my bad), so if you find one out there....keep it...it's a good one. ;)

We caught our 18 walleye by 10:15, and they decided to get to the fish cleaners and head home, since they live about 2 1/2 hours from Port Clinton. 

Mark and David both said that it was the best day of fishing they've ever had, and that makes me happy. 

I said my goodbyes and headed home to cut the grass, plant some flowers and veggies, walk Dexter, and get some food in me.  My friend, Jenn, helped me with the gardens, brought her dogs to walk and play with Dexter, and split a pizza with me, for which I'm thankful for! Thanks Jenn! :)

I had a 2-Day trip scheduled for tomorrow and Friday, but have rescheduled them, due to weather, and my Saturday and Sunday guys rescheduled, due to complications with the virus and traveling here.  So, right now, I'm watching the weather forecast for another 2-Day trip scheduled for Monday and Tuesday. We shall see....

Stay tuned....

Capt Juls

Fishing with Jenn for the "Back to the Wild" Eagles 4/28/2020

by Capt Juls on 04/28/20

First let me say, "At this time, I don't know when they will start selling non-resident fishing licenses again".  I wish I had a crystal ball, but I don't. And, those that should know the answer, do not want to give a concrete answer, because of the Virus and all its uncertainty.  So, when I know something more, and it's proven as "fact"...I'll post it. That's all I can do.  

The Charters are shut down until the May 12th now, per Governor DeWine's briefing yesterday afternoon.  

I'm hoping that they would be wise enough to start the sale of out of state licenses by that date too, or it wouldn't do us much good, when most of our customers are tourists that come to go fishing.

I do think that if sanitary protocols are met, the customers are limited to the number that can fit on any given boat (with enough room to keep a decent distance), they are Ohio residents that have been on quarantine here in the state, and have an Ohio resident fishing license....they should be able to charter if they want.  I do know that the ODNR would not write a ticket for any of that, because the Capt and the customers would not be breaking any law(s). Correct me if I'm wrong, please.

Anyway...back to today's trip...:)

I woke up at 5am, and could already hear the birds chirping while I laid there in bed, pondering what another boring day in my house the day would be.

As I drank my coffee on the back deck, and listened to all the noises that happen only when the dark of night is lifted off the horizon and the Sun begins its ascent, I noticed the quiet too. The wind wasn't blowing, so my plethora of wind chimes weren't dinging and clanging their music. That meant only one thing...the lake was going to be calm today.   

I checked the weather apps on my phone and found out it was going to be a very nice day. Probably one of the nicest days we've had so far.  I wasn't about to sit at home again, when there is a lake full of walleye swimming around just a couple of miles away from me.

I texted Capt Jenn to see if she wanted to go fishing to catch some fish for the "Back to the Wild" animal rescue with me, and she did.  Even though we can only bring them 12 fish, every little bit is very much appreciated by them. Especially, during this time where everyone is hurting somehow, someway...they are too. They need support with donations of fish or monetary donations whatever can be given.  They're a great organization and do so much for the wildlife around here. If you want to check them out their website is here: https://www.backtothewild.org

We hit Mazurick's and launched at 830am. The air temp was in the low to mid 40's this morning, and the water temp was 46.9 degrees. Colder than a week and a half ago, actually. The water temp had gotten up to 51 degrees before and now it's back down 4 degrees. 

We headed NW out of Mazurik's to the west side of Green and headed towards Rattle Snake at a speed of 1.7-1.9mph.

We set up with Bandits 71, 63, and 57 on the starboard side and 75, 68, and 58 on the port side (at least I think that's what Jenn set out on her side).  We trolled for about 45 minutes with only one pull back, so I told her, "Let's pick up and head someplace else". 

As the big motor warmed up, we retrieved all the lines, and we were off. I headed west towards the reefs, but came across a very muddy and very distinct mud line. I wasn't sure how wide the muddy water was, so I kept heading WNW wondering if it would clean up.  I could see what appeared to be cleaner water on the west side of Niagara, and I hoped that it wasn't an optical illusion fooling me, which it can sometimes do out there. ;)

It did clean up and we ended up setting up between Niagara, Flat Rock, and Little Pickerel reefs in 26-27 feet of water.  The Bandits were dispatched again, but this time I ran on Deep Husky Jerk #12 on the outside board at 45 back. The two other Bandits were at 55 and 65 back.  We ended up catching the first 6 in that one pass. 5 on Bandits and 1 on that DHJ12. 

I got word from another boat, that was back in my first spot, that they were doing well...better than us, so we moved back there, since it was on our way back to Mazurik's anyway.

Long story short...we caught the last 6 there in about a 1/2 hour. Red Headed Wonderbread, Sunspot, Black Gold, Attention Deficit, and one I don't know the name of, but I will soon, because I need more of that one. lol  

We enjoyed the sunshine and warm weather on a calm lake today and charged up our batteries with some much needed vitamin D. It felt good to be barefoot in the boat, and made the comment, "I should have worn shorts", because it got that warm out there. 

It was time to head in, so we could take the fish over to the rescue, and hit up Casa Las Palmas for some Mexican food. 

I don't know when I'll be back out again, but the weekend is looking pretty good right now, so my fingers are crossed. :)

Stay tuned....

Capt Juls

Day 3 with Bryon Haro 3/25/2020

by Capt Juls on 03/25/20

This was Bryon Haro's third day with me, so he already knew the morning routine, which allowed us to move faster and get on the water by 7am. The sky was just getting light, the temp was around 36 degrees, and the wind was calm to light and variable. Other anglers were pulling in the parking lot, getting things ready,  while others launched their boats.

The docks were pretty quiet when we launched though, so our timing was pretty good. There was only one other boat at the dock when I walked back from the parking lot.  Bryon's from MN, and has had several Ranger boats over the years, and has fished on the NWT and FLW Co Angler side for several years now too, so I was comfortable letting him pilot the boat while I parked the truck. 

Yesterday, when we had one hour left to fish, I asked Bryon, "Do you mind if we go over to Clinton Reef to check it out? It should be holding fish, if that water isn't too dirty". Bryon said, "Sure, let's go".  So, we ran over there and looked at the water. It was perfect. It was 42.5 degrees  (3 degrees warmer than it was by F can yesterday), the stain was the right mixing color and I could see just a little more than the cavitation plate.

We set up with Bandits 25/30/40  and 25/35/31 behind the Off Shore boards. Speed was 1.4-1.5mph 
Colors were:
Red Headed Wonderbread
Taco Salad
Pooh Bear Chart
Green Clown
RC Crush
And, one DHJ12 that you can see in my photo album on page 34. I don't know the name of the color and I'm too lazy to go searching for it.

Anywhoooo......Long story short...yesterday, we found an excellent bite over there. The fish were healthy chunkers from 3 to 8 pounds...and, hungry too! We had doubles and triples going and ended up with 15 nice fish in 1 hour.

I knew where we would be starting this morning...:)

I was thankful we were able to sneak away from the dock unnoticed, so we wouldn't have any followers. (Sometimes, it's nice to have a good spot all to yourself, if only for a day). With Bryon behind the wheel, we headed back to the same area....a whopping 3/4 mile from the launch. Bryon got the boat up on plane and a very short time later shut her down.  

We set up in the same area as we ended yesterday and waited for the fun to begin. It didn't. In the first hour we had two pull backs and two nice eaters...then, nothing. I was beginning to worry that the walleye had moved out. Then, I remembered the wind was from the east yesterday, and it might have moved them west. So I said, while pointing my finger,  "They might have moved west from here, let's just keep going that way".  

It wasn't much longer, when the chaos ensued! Doubles, triples, and a Quad all happened in short order. One of those fish was a big walleye that had a Lamprey attached to it too, which was a surprise to see. This is only the second or third one I've personally seen in my 21 years fishing Lake Erie.

We had our limit by 9am and then played catch photo and release for the next 4 hours. We were still hoping for a decent "Fish-O" to get a picture of, but we were running out of time. 

I was letting Bryon run the Ulterra at the time when I said, "Turn the boat south, and we'll see what happens". He was just getting out of the turn when the fast side of the boat's board went back. He looked at me, to question whether I wanted to reel one in too, and I said, "You're closest, you take it", and laughed. The last fish of the day was a fat 28 3/4 piggy. Not quite his personal best, which is 29 1/2 inches, but still a great fish to end the trip with.

Bryon had a great time, and I enjoyed these past three days very much too. It was very relaxing for me to have a very good fisherman in the boat. We caught 40+ fish today, and couldn't have asked for a better bite. 

After getting the fished cleaned over at Cutcher's in Oak Harbor, Bryon hit the road to get a few hours under his belt on his way back to Minnesota. 

I am now in the state lockdown mode with most others.

I will be resuming my charters on April 10th, unless something else happens that won't allow me to go.

So until then....I wish everyone good health and hope they stay safe from this virus.

And, so it goes...Stay tuned....

Capt Juls

Fishing Day 2 with Bryon Haro 3/24/2020

by Capt Juls on 03/24/20

FYI:  I am shutting down my charters after tomorrow's trip with Bryon, until April 9th, due to the implemented State Lockdown here in Ohio. The lockdown is supposed to end April 6th. 

Today's trip was a fun one with Bryon. We easily caught upwards of 40 fish today, so it was a good time. We didn't get any piggies today though, but maybe we will tomorrow.

The wind was really light out of the ESE at 7:30, but it picked up a little more around 11am.

We set up a couple miles NW of the Catawba launch with Bandits 45 to 65 back at 1.0 - 1.1mph. and caught our 12 pretty quickly...and, then, we continued to play catch, photo, and release until 1:30pm.

Speed was 1.3-1.5mph

I'm fishing with Bryon again tomorrow and then I spend two weeks working in my gardens.

Stay tuned...

Capt Juls

Fishing with Bryon Haro 3/23/2020

by Capt Juls on 03/23/20

Before I get to the fishing part of my blog, I'd like to just update you on the situation here in Ohio as far as the Corona Virus goes...The state is on lockdown, or "shelter in place" until April 6th.

1. I got word from both the ODNR and the Police that we are allowed to keep fishing. Just use common sense and keep space between you and use hand sanitizer. The state ramps are not planning on closing unless something drastically changes for the worst.

2. Like most other states now, our restaurants and bars are closed, but are still doing carry out and delivery for food.

3. Grocery stores and gas stations are open.

4. Hotels are iffy....some have closed and some are staying open for the time being. If you are coming in and have reservations someplace, you should call and find out what the status is for your stay.

Okay...now, for the fishing part of the report...

I only had one person today...Bryon Haro, so it was easy to keep space between us in a 21 foot Ranger. :)

We launched out of Catawba at 7:45 and headed towards the cans. The water was very stained, but I could still see the cavitation plate, so we stopped and set up with Bandits back anywhere from 35 to 65. We caught 4 small fish and I wasn't seeing the marks on the screen like I wanted to, so we headed north to a little cleaner water.

We stopped a little SW of Niagara and set a course with the Ulterra towards D can.
The marks up there were disappointing too. We did manage to catch two more there though, and they were a little chunkier than the ones to the south. 

The wind was picking up out of the NNE, and the clouds were spitting a cold rain, so you can imagine how enjoyable that is when the boards are not going back at a steady pace....sigh. 

Next stop was Starve. We picked up one fish there, but the marks were fantastic. The fish however were not cooperative to our offerings, so we headed back to the west and gave it another shot.  The bite was better there, but it wasn't fast and furious for us, as it sounded on the radio for some others.  Bandits back 40-60 over 23 foot of water was most productive for us.  Speed was anywhere from 1.2 to 1.7mph  There was no real pattern to dial in on today.

Water temp dropped from 40.0 degrees there last Thursday to 38.9 degrees today.

We managed our limit of eaters, and the biggest was a 26" fatty that hit after we already had 12 in the cooler, so we took a picture and sent her back to finish her journey to the spawning grounds.  We caught three or four more after we had our limit and then it was time to head in.

Bryon is a very good fisherman and has fished several NWT and FLW events on the Co Angler side, so we had a lot in common too. Despite the crappy weather, it was an enjoyable day on the water with him.  We are fishing together again tomorrow, and the weather forecast is better than it was today, so it's already better than it was today! Ha! ;)

We'll be launching out of Catawba again.

Stay tuned...

Capt Juls

Fishing with Jim, Doug, and Chuck 3/19/2020

by Capt Juls on 03/19/20

I left the house this morning at 6:30 and headed straight for Catawba Park. I was meeting Jim, Chuck, and Doug there at 7:30. I figured I could wipe the dirty spray off the boat, before they got there. The roads were wet from all the rain we had last night.

The morning was quiet, there was no wind, and it was foggy. The visibility was maybe 1/2 mile. The air temp was around 37 degrees.  The parking lot was bustling with anglers walking back and forth from their trucks to the boats, getting ready to launch.  It's kind of weird talking to people right now, since we have "rules of engagement" that need to be followed...but, so it goes, eh?  Whattaya gonna do? All we can do is wash our hands and avoid getting it the best we can. Good luck to everyone! :)


After the G2 warmed up to temp we headed NW of the launch to the cans. I had prefished there the day before with Capt Jen, and did well, so I thought we would start there.  Well, we didn't stay there long...we only went 5 for 7 in the first pass, which seemed too long. There were a lot more patches of blank screen on the Helix than there was with fish on it. So, it was time to move.  

We headed over towards G and H cans and set up in 23' of water. Bandits were run 35/45/55/and 65 back and at one point or another they all caught fish. White bodied baits (RC Crush was our hot color today) along with Khaki, Humblebee, Purple Tiger, and Pooh Bear Chartreuse (another hot color today). Speed was 1.4-1.6mph

We caught our 24 and had several "hit and runs" that took the board back, but popped off a short time later.

The water temp got up to 40.0 degrees at 1:30 today, so that's a good sign that Spring is here. Woot! Woot!

The crew did a great job and learned a few things to take to use on Jim's boat when they are fishing together. Mission accomplished, so that makes me happy. :)

I am not fishing tomorrow. I won't be back out until Monday.

Stay tuned...

Capt Juls

Fishing with Chris, Lyle, and Steve 3/12/2020

by Capt Juls on 03/12/20

What a start to the morning. I left the house and had running lights on my trailer. I pulled into the gas station to fill the Ranger and left the truck running. I pulled away from the gas station and noticed that my running lights went out. I blew the fuse again...sigh. I'll have to figure this one out.

So, then, I drive over to the Country Inn and Suites to pick up my crew and realized that I never confirmed where they were staying when I talked to them yesterday. I just assumed they were there, because that's where they usually stay when Chris brings his own boat over from Wisconsin. Luckily, I was early as usual, and found out that they were at the Commodore Perry Inn, over by my house. I didn't want to drive all the way across town again with no trailer lights, so I called Chris and told him where I was and he said, "No problem. We'll meet you at Big Bopper's". That helped.  Apparently, I'm out of practice....I usually confirm where they are staying so I know where to pick them up. 

After a hearty breakfast, we headed over to Catawba to launch. The launch was busy, just as the night was lifting and the sky began to slowly brighten. 
It was a cloudy morning with a very slight ESE wind and the air temp was 41 degrees. The water clarity is cleaner than expected west of the islands, and pockets of fish are holding in the slightest of stained waters.

We had a steady slow bite at D can early this morning and went 8 for 10 there in a couple hours.  We ran Bandits on the starboard side and P-10's on the port side again. Bandits were run anywhere from 63' to a 100 back (unassisted), while the P-10's did their thing at 20/20 and 30/30 with a 1oz snap weight.  Speed was 1.1-1.2mph.

We discussed staying out there or going back to the south to an area we both hit yesterday... (they were with Capt Kevin yesterday). We chose the later.  The set up was the same. The colors were mostly white bodied baits with oranges, greens, purples and black. 

At one point we decided to try going faster rather than slower and I upped the power level on the Ulterra to 5 1/2-6 which pulled the boat at 1.5-1.6mph. Boom! A double within seconds of the baits speeding up! A P-10 at 30/30 pulled a porker 28" that we guesstimated at 9+ and maybe even 10 pounds because of the size of her belly. 

To make this long story short....we ended up with 21 of our 24 fish limit. We also missed 8 more that came unbuttoned before the board was off. 

The guys had a good time, and so did I. They are a lot of fun to fish with. Chris left me a bunch of Venison breakfast sausage too and everyone knows that makes me happy! :)

I'm not scheduled for another trip until Saturday the 22nd with a new customer, Pete Petros.  

Stay tuned....

Capt Juls

Fishing with Mark, Cassie, and Cassie's Papa 3/11/20

by Capt Juls on 03/11/20

Even though I was out fishing with friends in January and February of this year, today was the official start of my Lake Erie charters for the 2020 season. Woot! Woot!

Mark, who is the Produce Mgr over at our local Kroger store, his girlfriend Cassie, and Cassie's Dad David, met me at the Catawba Ramp for an 8am launch. They were right on time, and we got the Ranger in the water.

After letting the G2 warm up to temp, I got her up on plane and we headed out. It wasn't fast by any means, because there was a layer of fog we had to deal with this morning. With a course set to Starve Island, I kept a look out for silhouettes of boats in the edge of the fog, hoping that we didn't come upon one.  We didn't.

I slowed the boat when we got to the inside contour on the south side of the hole there. Using the "Legacy" iPilot option, the compass was set to a westerly direction as we traveled in from the east. Powering the Ulterra to level 4 we trolled away at a whopping speed of 1.1mph.

Bandits were run on the starboard side, while P-10's were run on the port side. The Bandits were set out at 100/80/75, 50/25 w/2oz, and the P-10's were 30/30 with 1oz or 2oz. Colors that caught today were: Barbie, RC Crush, a white one with a black dot on the side, and a green belly...a purple one with splotches of purple on the head and tail and a yellow/orange combo with black dots in the center...(I can't remember the names of all these colors...sigh). Oh, and Pooh Bear/Chart took a few fish too. :)

We caught 6 walleye there, but I didn't mark the kind of fish I'd usually like to, so we headed west next. We set up just east of F can, on that large contour that runs NW/SE through there, close to that can. I usually call that one, "The Highway"...I'm sure you can guess the reason why. ;)

We caught one there relatively quick, so I had high hopes for a better bite. I began to think it was not a good move.  And, just as I thought that, I see the Coast Guard boat flying up on my starboard stern. Three of us began to clear the boards on that side in case they wanted to come up to the boat. And, just as we started that, the boat came off plane, turned away, and got up and left again. I waved...one of them waved back.  We set the Off Shores back out to their marching positions and continued trolling.

I didn't like the cleaner water we were in, so the decision was made to go find a little dirtier water and some better marks and set up there.  While we were doing that, the USCG shows up again. We were both running mid 30's to low 40's. It was a crossing situation, I was the stand on vessel, and they kept coming. I sped it up, and they hit the blue light...I stopped...lol  No winning that one. No worries though, they just wanted to check my charter license and nothing more.  They asked how we were doing, and we said we had 7 walleye. He said, "That's the most I've heard of so far this morning". So, we were feeling pretty good that the slow bite was not only affecting us, and was happening to others.  He also asked that if I knew of any, or found out about any, illegal charters to let them know. They are cracking down, and I'm glad to see that! I told him I would, and with a wave, we went on our way.

I decided to go back to Starve since we did our best there, and hoped to repeat what we did earlier in the morning. Unfortunately, I think we only caught one more there and lost a board sinker before we even took the board off.  Meanwhile, I was given info from a friend to go back where we had left earlier, because that bite had turned on. So we did.  The fog was beginning to lift so we could see land and blue pockets of sky, which put us all in a good mood. We hurried back to the west and set up.

We had enough time for a 1/2 mile pass from the NE to the SW before the crew had to get back to the dock....we caught 5 more relatively fast, and lost one. The best performers were the Bandits at 63 back and the Barbie P-10's at 30/30 1 oz.

We ended the trip with 13

Water temp was 35.6 on my Helix today.

They had a good time and were happy to just be outside and fishing. They caught some fish for a fish fry, and as an add bonus, they spent some quality time with family. They were a lot of fun to fish with too. Very relaxing and calm. My favorites. :)

Speaking of favorites...tomorrow, I have a charter with one of my previous customers, Chris Utter, and his friends. I'm sure those of you that know me, or follow my blog,  knows about the venison breakfast sausage Chris brings me each spring to make my biscuits and gravy. It's the best! Anyway....I'll be fishing with them tomorrow. My friend, Capt Kevin, had them today. 

The weather looks like it's going to be pretty darn nice tomorrow. I hope everyone gets a chance to get out and enjoy it too.

Stay tuned....

Capt Juls

The New Ranger is Here and Ready to Go! :)

by Capt Juls on 02/17/20

I picked up the new Ranger 621 FS Pro back on the 7th, and got some aftermarket things installed, and she's ready to go!

The EZEESteps are on, so it makes getting in and out of the boat easier and safer for my customers, and myself. :) 

The MoDog Running Rod Rack is installed, so it makes running with rods out of the rod locker safer for my rods.

The Cisco Rod Holders are all set up in the tracks and ready to rock and roll. 

She's gassed up and the 300 G2 has a full tank of oil in her, and all my gear for the spring bite is loaded.

I do have one last thing to install next Monday, and that's the Evinrude Nautilus 3.5 gauge that needs to be installed on the dash, so I have engine info at my fingertips. 
The new RIDE touch screen system that Ranger is using doesn't allow the Evinrude's to display any engine info, like the ICON or Nautilus does.  The RIDE system will show engine temp, RPMs, and allow me to manually trim from the touch screen, but it doesn't give me the auto trim, and any alert messages.
The Nautilus will give me back my auto trim and just give me the peace of mind of knowing exactly what is happening with my motor at all times. 

As I understand it, the new RIDE is most compatible with Mercury's and Lowrance Electronics, since that's what Ranger pushes. But, I like my ETEC's and my Humminbird's....so, a rebel I will remain! Ha!

If anyone is looking to book a Lake Erie Walleye trip this spring with me, here are the open dates as of today (2/17/2020)...

March: is dependent on if there is ice or not....so, the days I've already booked are the following: 22, 25, 28, 29 30, 31  Other dates in March might be workable depending on the weather.

April Open Dates: 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 21, 23, 24, 26, 28, 29, 30

May Open Dates: FULL

June Open Dates: 4, 5, 16, 17, 20, 21, 22, 23, 25th thru the 30th

July Open Dates: Everything except the following: 6, 13, 14, 16, 17

August Open Dates: Everything except the following: 6th thru the 16th

Sept. Open Dates: Everything except the following: 18, 21, 22, 23, 24

The fishing should be pretty phenomenal this season, so if you want in on some of this Lake Erie fun...book your trip sooner than later! :)

Stay tuned....

Capt Juls

Fishing for the Heck of it...1/28/2020

by Capt Juls on 01/28/20

Headed out this morning at 11:30 from Huron with my friend, Jenn Weiland. She's the "Her" part in "H & H Charters" (His and Hers). 

The wind was from the WNW at about 5mph, which put a small chop on the lake's surface. I pointed the Ranger's nose into the waves and drove about 3 miles into them.  The Helix was marking fish the entire way, so my hopes were high for a decent bite.

With the Ulterra deployed, and a speed set to 1.2-1.3mph, I set a course for an ESE troll from the WSW side of the Huron Dumping grounds. We started in 37 feet of water and trolled out to 40 feet. Keeping the waves on the port side corner of the stern. That allowed the speed to be controlled easier.

Our program was, Bandits 70-100' back, unassisted, and also 50/24 w/1oz. We narrowed down the program to 70-75 back unassisted with the 50/24 1oz set up too.  We went 12 for 14 in just under 3 hours. White bodied bates with green and orange on them seemed to outperform the darker baits today.

The water was a bit stained, but not so bad that you didn't think you could catch something in it. I didn't even look at the water temperature on the Helix, so I don't know exactly what it's reading right now...sorry.

The Huron ramp was wide open with no floating ice anywhere. There was wood debris by the ramp, but it's not that bad either. The water is nasty though and will leave a dirty scum line on your boat. :(

We are expecting light winds all week, and temps in the mid 30's. The nights will be colder, however, and with light winds, that's a recipe for skim ice at the ramps in the mornings.  I have a feeling though, there will be boats going out all week, as the winds look fantastic until Saturday afternoon. Sunday is supposed to start blowing again.

Jenn and I had a good time, and it felt great to be back on the water today. Woot! Woot! :)

So, if any of you are able to get out there the rest of this week....it will be a pretty good bite all week, I think. Good luck and be safe if you go! :)

Not sure when I'll be out again.....

Stay tuned....

Capt Juls

Fishing for "Back to the Wild" Wildlife Rescue 1/15/20

by Capt Juls on 01/15/20

This morning I drove the jeep over to Jenn's house so we could hook my Ranger up to her Yukon, because I didn't know if the ramps would be icy or not, and she has 4WD. My old Excursion is only 2WD.  

I took the dogs with me, so they could hang out with her two dogs while she and I fished today. We were meeting John Thompson, who drove down from the Detroit area, to fish with us too.

We left Catawba ramp around 8am and headed over towards G Can. Once there, I turned the boat and let the Ulterra troll us back towards Catawba at a whopping 1.3 mph.  The water temp was 34.7 degrees.

We started out with Bandits on one side and P-10's on the other. The Bandits were on the starboard side at 45/55/65 back unassisted behind Off Shore boards. The P-10's were at 30/30 1oz, 30/40 1oz, and 25/25 2oz. The Bandits were catching fish, but the P-10's didn't do anything, so we didn't waste any time changing them out to Bandits too.

Colors that caught fish today were: Buck Fever, Green Flash, Pooh Bear Chartreuse, Red Headed Wonderbread, Huff Daddy Chrome, Fire Tiger, and two I can't remember the names of...and, I'm too tired to go searching for them on the internet. ;)

There was a light fog on the lake, but visibility was pretty good. There was absolutely no wind when we started, and that lasted for about an hour and a half, until a SE wind began to whisper its approach. A 1/2 hour later it was blowing around 10mph...putting a little chop on the water's surface.

The water was muddy inside near the ramp, so I was worried that maybe we launched out of the wrong ramp and should have gone north of Kelly's, but a mile out it was looking very fishable. The water was stained, but I could still see my cavitation plate and prop on the G2. 

The purpose of today's trip was to catch some walleye to take over to the "Back to the Wild" Wildlife Rescue in Castalia, OH to help feed the birds of prey, and other furry critters that like to eat fish.  

We only fished three hours and headed back in with 11 of the 15 walleye we had on today. They were perfect eaters, and the size the Eagles would normally grab with their talons, if they were able to go fishing too.  

After saying thank you and goodbye to John, Jenn and I headed back to her house to take care of the dogs, and change our clothes, before heading over to the rescue center with our catch.

Neither of us had ever been to the center, so it was a real treat to get a tour of the place while someone took the cooler of fish in back to do what they do with them.
They were kind enough to wash out my cooler before putting it back out by the truck for us too! :)

They have a really nice place out there, and are always in need of food, supplies, and monetary donations. They are a non-profit that runs completely on the generosity of good hearted people. The tour was very interesting and informative, and I highly recommend a visit there for anyone that wants to see what they are all about, and how well they take care of the animals. 

Many are rehabilitated and set back out in the wild, while others are injured in some way, and can never be released. One of the 7 Eagles they had was a 28 year old female they've had for 17 years now. She cannot be released back into the wild, because she is blind in both eyes, due to a bout with the West Nile Virus. They nursed her back to health, and now she lives a very peaceful life with the best of care.

We didn't see everything, because we were both starving, and it was getting chilly out, but what we did see was very cool. There were several owls and hawk varieties, a Bob Cat, an Arctic Fox, a Crow, Great Blue Heron, some Ducks, and of course, the Eagles.

They said that they really appreciate getting fresh fish, and that what doesn't get put out right away is put in the freezer for a later use. They ask, however, that if anyone does bring them fish that the fish not be a "bottom feeder".  

So, from now on, I will start keeping those eater sized Sheepshead and White Bass, and take them over to the rescue. Castalia is about 20 minutes from the lake, so it's not a huge inconvenience to drop some fish off for them from time to time. :)

It takes a lot of work, dedicated workers, and money/supplies to run a place like that, so if you find you have an extra dollar you can donate, to help them help the wildlife....please click the donate button below this post to do a good deed. Thank You!!!

The Cleveland Boat and Fishing Show starts tomorrow and runs through Monday the 20th. The weather is turning crappy again, so I don't see any more fishing for me anytime soon, but if it changes...I'll let you know! :)

Stay tuned....

Capt Juls