Tuesday, October 24, 2023
Friday, October 20, 2023
Tuesday, October 10, 2023
Sunday, October 8, 2023
Saturday, October 7, 2023
Wednesday, October 4, 2023
I have received several messages that there has been a fish kill at Dickson Trout Pond. The evidence has been many dead fish along the causeway. I was rather surprised. I was there just a few weeks back and it was in great shape. Several of us have been speculating and we think the lake turned over and also had an algae bloom. Yep that would definitely choke the lake of the necessary oxygen that would sustain the rainbows and tiger trout! I am not sure whether there has been only a partial kill or a major kill. I hope I can get some feedback from others so I can share it with everyone!
Tuesday, October 3, 2023
Monday, October 2, 2023
It has been 4 years since I have been to Patterson Lake. It is definitely one of my favourite lakes in Manitoba. It felt so good to see my old friend. Patterson Lake had fallen out of favour because suckers started to dominate the lake. Fish managers tried to remove suckers with some success but it is impossible to remove them all. Suckers eat blood worms, chironomids and anything else they can devour. My buddy Steve and I fly fished two good days at Patterson to see how the fishery was doing. My friend Phil Rowley and his videographer, Ryan, were also there to film an episode of the New Fly Fisher. We were all in for a pleasant surprise.
We knew the brown trout were doing well. What about the rainbows? Well we started to run our trap line to see what Patterson had in store for us. The first day was warm, cloudy with very little wind. The water temperature was 59 F. These are excellent conditions although a bit warm for the last week in September. Fish were rising all around the boat launch and some fly fishers were right out in front of the dock, although they were not catching much of anything.
Our first stop was choked with weeds. Steve and I motored to another favourite spot on the lake and set up along an edge of weeds. I used an ice minnow and Steve tied on a Tokaryk Special. We hung them just 14-16 inches below the surface. I missed several takes and finally Steve hooked a dandy rainbow that was easily in the 6 pound category. We took a throat sample. It was full of tiny boatmen. Steve connected with another rainbow of the same quality and it too had been feeding on small water boatmen. It was my turn to connect with my ice minnow. It was a 21 inch brown trout! It had beautiful colours. We caught three more from the same spot. Wow, we were excited. Both rainbows and browns were cruising along the weed lines. The rainbows were impressive sizes. They were cruising the edges just like brown trout behavior. We then moved all around the lake to several of our favourite spots to look. We caught many more rainbows. Steve then hooked a dandy brown that measure out at 24 inches. Wow.
We had a great day. We stopped at so many of our old haunts and caught rainbows and a few browns in most of our favourite spots.
Three days later, we came back to Patterson. It was a big, blue sky day and the lake had been stocked the day before. Newly stocked lakes can mess up the fly fishing for a few days. We decided to motor well away from the launch area. The morning fly fishing was excellent. Both Phil and I connected with several quality rainbows. Just after lunch, the fishing slowed substantially. Patterson Lake had decided to show its fickle side. I managed to land a very large rainbow by a beaver house after lunch and that was it. The afternoon was glorious. Warm, vibrant fall colours were an amazing backdrop to our fly fishing. Snow geese, tundra swans and Canada geese were on their migration route right over Patterson Lake.
The two days we spent on Patterson Lake were definitely encouraging. The only downside seemed to be the fact that the lake was down a bit. The trout seem to be there in decent numbers and up to the quality that definitely makes it a trophy lake. Steve and I did a "run and gun" approach. We covered a lot of the edges. That seemed to be a good strategy for us. Some fly fishers stayed in their favourite spots and others trolled.
Suckers still will need to be managed at Patterson Lake. That will be a big continuous challenge.
Will I be back in the spring? Absolutely! This was a fact finding mission that made me smile!