Awesome story, Amanda! Could not have happened to a better team of anglers. Congrats!
Hey Amanda: You should be a journalist! Very well written post. I anxiously anticipated your eventual catch throughout your narration. Oh, and a beauty of a fish! Congrats again on your tourney victory. That Vexer bait has been really hot as of late.
Best Regards Chuck
I was encouraged to write up an account of the 50.5" musky that my fishing partner and I boated two weeks ago. I hope you enjoy!
50.5" Behemoth - A Chippewa Flowage Musky Story
“FISH.” That was the only word that escaped as I set the hook on the heaviest weight I had ever experienced in freshwater fishing. It was 7:00am on Thursday, September 7, 2017 and the first morning of the 19th Annual Lake Chippewa Flowage Resort Association Tournament in Hayward, WI. We had gotten a late start, but my fishing partner, Kristin Elmer, and I were in high spirits as we began fishing our favorite tournament of the year on a cool, cloud-covered morning. It was just about moonset and I was casting my top bait pick for the tournament, a natural crappie-colored Vexer I had gotten a wild hair about the night before and picked up last-minute from Ty Sennett. So many Chippewa Flowage fish had recently been caught on Vexers and this morning an underwater giant had decided mine looked like breakfast!
“It’s heavy! It’s soooo heavy.” We had only been on the water for 30 minutes and were on our first fishing spot of the day, a favorite shoreline of ours within sight of Deerfoot Lodge, often overlooked by other anglers and one that had produced for us before. I gripped my Thorne Brothers St. Croix medium heavy casting rod ever more tightly, while Kristin began prepping the boat, pulling up the Minn Kota and putting things away, “setting us up for success” as we liked to joke. As the fish slowly meandered toward the boat, its power became even more evident and time seemed to slow to a crawl. I was so grateful I had double-checked all my gear the night before, running a couple rod-lengths of 80-lb braid off my Abu Garcia Revo Toro Winch and retying the leader with a solid, fresh knot. All that mattered was landing that fish.
“Don’t horse it, don’t horse it.” Kristin’s words were just what I needed in that moment as the adrenaline kicked into high gear and we got closer and closer to landing the brute. The fish stayed deep and every head shake it gave had me holding my breath as I hoped against hope the fish would stay on and we’d at least have a chance to catch a glimpse of it! As I followed the fish up one side of the boat, back down the boat and around the other side, I was thankful for the width and stability of my 1850 Lund Pro-V and the excellent platform it gave us from which to play the fish. Finally, after what seemed like a lifetime, but must have been no more than three or four minutes, the fish flashed near the surface and we saw the length and girth. “It’s HUGE!” With one more run up the side of the boat and back, Kristin delivered the most perfect net job of all time, waiting until the fish was ready and netting the entire fish in one fell swoop.
“AAAAaaaahhhh!!!!!” The cheering and shrieks of joy that erupted from the boat as the fish hit the bag echoed clear across the lake! It was a beautiful, healthy, GIANT musky and the largest fish we had ever landed together. I radioed for a witness boat and unhooked the fish in the net. The monstrous bag and thick netting of my Frabill Power Catch net allowed the fish to rest easy in the water and recover from the fight while we waited. Kristin and I were thrilled to see the same anglers pull up who had witnessed a tournament fish for us three years prior and brought the fish up for pictures. I was barely able to lift the fish up over the gunnel it was so heavy! It wasn’t until we laid the musky on our T’s Tackle bump board that we realized the size – Kristin and I had just landed a Chippewa Flowage monster, measuring in at 50.5 inches and a new personal best! After a few more photos, the fish was successfully released and swam away to find a less feisty meal. We didn’t get a weight or girth measurement (on our list for next time!), but I’ll definitely be getting a replica of that beauty, incorporating the Vexer that’s now slightly crushed on one side and has gone into a well-deserved early retirement! What a catch. I. Love. This. Lake.
Fished the Musky Hunt Tournament with Amanda Wilson from Deerfoot Lodge and we had this 50.5" behemoth in the boat by 7:15am on the first day of the tourney (Thursday, Sept 7th).
As Deano noted, this was the tournament winner!
Fish was caught on a Crappie colored Vexer.
Busy year this and not a lot of time to post. Adopted a nephew this summer and now my life has changed. I want to apologise if I missed your call or forgot to call back.
Fishing has be up and down with the weather. Fished the Musky Hunt for the first time and ended up in 11th place with a 38.5 inch ski. Fished with Nathan of Deerfoot and Nathan caught his first musky just under 30. That was overshaddowed by My wife's partner Amanda who caught the winning fish before we even got on the water. Amanda boated a 50.5 and took the $2000 prize. Fun event.
Guided yesterday for crappie and walleye. Crappie were up to 11 and biggest walleye was 25.5 on a gold flicker shad.
Guided Ralph, Howard and Jim out of The Landing last Sunday for some Walleyes. Worked humps and sunken bogs using jigs/ leeches and crawlers. Despite the windy day, about 7 shorts were boated and one that was 18 inches which went back. Fun group of guys to have in the boat under bright skies.
Water level is about a foot low and water temps are hovering at 65 degs. Wont be long and we'll be switching back to minnows for the 'eye's and suckers for the 'ski's.
The trees are slowly turning and I suspect a brillant colors this year due to all the rain this past summer.
I do have availability this Saturday if someone wants to get out there and enjoy the early fall weather.
Good luck and we'll see you on the lake!
On the topic of suckers, what is the sucker inventory looking like this year in the hayward area? Suckers have been tough to buy in Wisconsin in general these past few years. If would be nice to know how things are going to be.