Monday, February 21, 2011

Tiger Muskie Fishing at Lake Merwin

“Muskie Mayhem at Merwin”
5 boats + 10 fisherman = 20 Tigers

The headlights glanced from fir tree to fir tree. A parade of “coffee fueled” Muskie hunters traveled the winding
Lewis River Road
to Lake Merwin. Darkness still hung on. One by one, boats and trailers clanking, the Chapter 57 hopefuls pulled into an empty boat launch parking lot. The (rarely ever seen) Western Washington sun peeked over the mountain as mist rose off Speelyai Bay. Five boats slithered their way into the waters. Typical fisherman bull was already flying and previously caught Tigers were growing larger with every story.
    Silver Lake, one fish caught. Pend Oreille River had its challenges. Mayfield Reservoir, one fish caught. It’s been a skinny year so far. But something seemed different this day. There was no confusion at sign up, everyone had their banners, boats were in the water and ready to go at six straight up.  As the day unfolded we would realize that the “Great Muskie Gods” like the sun, would shine brightly on us. The “perfect storm” of conditions had broken our way as the barometric pressure was dropping and the moon phase was just right, Tigers were hungry!
    Mike and John were off to some secret spot where only the weathered and wise dare tread. Perry, by himself, chooses a familiar bay to toss his favorite lures and enjoy the peaceful waters of Lake Merwin. Bob and I took off across the lake. We settled on a far bank where several stupid fish were known to be lurking. Miles and “Jump’n” Jon headed west to several bays and banks that were sure to produce some action. Mike and Dan, we’re not really sure where they hid out but there was fish there.
   Like a “Montana Forest Fire” stories of big fish spread up the Lake. Spinners, swim-baits and “Cuda Man Specials” were tearing up the weed beds, logs and sunken stumps. Eager Muskies were hitting everyone’s lures and those memories of being skunked melted away. Deep water, shallow beaches or sparse weed beds it didn’t seem to matter much, we were getting thumped at every turn. When it was all said and done 20 fish made it to the boats. Eight fat fish over 40”. Wow! They were measured with care and posed for a ceremonial picture with the proud fisherman before returning to their watery home.
   As the victorious hunters returned to the docks there was a bit of sadness as this great day had come to an end. We gathered in the parking lot, stories of just how many Tigers were caught, lost and fought were relived. I overheard one member of many years exclaim “I’ve never seen anything like this before, maybe never again”.  The lasting story was on everyone’s faces, sun tans, smiles and pure satisfaction.

Doug Porter, Muskie Novice.

1 comment:

  1. As being the daughter of Sparky, I love fishing with my daddy. Sometimes we even catch fish, Ha Ha. Muskie Maddy >:":>


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