Monday, March 26, 2012

March Pike

Kevin is looking pretty happy about the first launch of his new boat!
My buddy Kevin just got a new boat and was itching to get out in it. He tried last weekend and despite the warm weather he could not find an area near him that was ice free. So we talked yesterday morning and his words were “This puppy is going in the water somewhere today”. We knew that the weather wasn’t going to be as pleasant as it was last week when I was out on the lake in a t-shirt and comfortable.  He and I had both talked with Ken Capsey, the pike madman, who had warned us about the wind. There was a flurry of text messages between us trying to figure out where to go. It all boiled down to “Be at my house at noon”. And at noon I was there.

Nice little pike!
The lake was a bit rough. The wind was coming from the south at 10-15 and there was a good chop on the water. Kevin’s Lund was up to the task. We had to cut across the waves which got us rocking a bit, but it wasn’t bad. We anchored on the outside edge of a weedbed in about 4 feet of water. There were still some remnants of plants around. It didn’t take too long before I was into a fish. Not a big pike by any means, but any pike on the fly in March is something special!

We moved the boat to another spot. I kept getting takes without getting a hook set. Either they were too small or I wasn’t fast enough on the draw (or both).  The action was pretty good. I got another pike then a decent pickerel.  It didn’t seem to matter what direction we were tossing; they were in the shallows and in the depths. Neither of us had a thermometer with us and both of us were expecting the water to be cold. That was wrong though. If I had to hazard a guess, I would say that it was in the low 50’s. Not too bad for March on Lake Champlain!

23" chain pick... very nice indeed!
We would fish in a spot for a while then move to another spot, anchor and fish. The weeds look like they are going to get sprouting soon. I suspect that this year we are going to see a lot of weed and algae growth on the lake. With low, warm water and all the nutrients that were washed in by Irene we could have some pretty soupy conditions on the lake this year. Warm water fishing should be excellent too!

The total for the day was awesome- 6 pickerel (including a 23” fish), 3 pike and 4 or 5 largemouth. Nothing huge, but a whole lot of fun to be had! I did feel badly though. Kevin was fishing just as hard as I was and with similar flies but he got blanked. He said he was just as happy to finally christen the boat with some snot rocket slime but I sure would love to see him get into some fish… Next week Kevin? You need to get a fish or two with that gorgeous new Rise rod you got (I cast it a few times and I was definitely impressed!).

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