Sunday, February 7, 2010

Cathance Lake Special...



Yesterday, I took to the ice after a short hiatus from all things outdoors. The weekend weather systems haven't been all that pleasant, and I haven't had much time with the family as a result of my dual careers. However, once the word "salmon" was mentioned and with some planning, a cold day on the ice would be in order. I would ride with my uncle to meet up with my cousin and another good buddy on Cathance Lake in Cooper, Maine. It may sound strange, but I've driven by the lake many times and never even considered it a viable option. Trolling for salmon seems to be popular in the spring, but I never had a reason to go there especially since I could hit the salmon on Gardner's Lake which is 20 minutes closer. Anyways, back to the story...

Once we got to the landing and unloaded, we made a short jaunt to the spot chosen by the dynamic duo who put Liquid's truck on the ice. Aptly named the S(tress)-10, the teal green pickup has been highly modified as the sportman's dream. A pressure treated wooden flat bed trimmed with eye screws provide for any securement while the stick shift gives the driver the ability to draw arms as an old Ruger pistol grip meets the hand for speed shifting. If you can bog the motor down just enough and then gear from 4th and 2nd with a little extra pedal, you can experience some boom, boom, pow and feel the shock wave from miles away. Needless to say, I'd guess the truck would be worth more below the ice than above it. Just kidding Liquid, you ride is very well pimped...



The boys had already set out, so Uncle and I made quick work with the ice auger and got our traps set. I chose to run straight out from an island into deeper water in hopes of hooking a salmon that might be swinging by the point. This line was completed by 9:20 and by 9:31 as I began to return to our post, the first flag sprang into the air. Once I neared the hole protected by a freezing slush wall to fight the drifting snow, I noticed the Heritage Laker spool spinning with intention. You forget what it's like to hook a bigger fish, especially since I've been chasing brook trout for the last two years. But on any account, I let the line run a tad more and began to retrieve the fish which I knew was a landlocked salmon. At first it felt like a log, then there was no resistance, then it was going in all directions. Eventually, the mono filament pulled out of the hole and a beautiful 19 inch salmon shined against the blue bird sky...

Liquid would yank out a foot long brook shortly thereafter and that would be the beginning of the end as I only had wind flags and prank flags for the remainder of our stay. We spent much time moving the Stress-10 to block the steady but shifting wind. I'm thankful for my cold weather gear, it was below 10 degrees and the persistent breeze made for a bitter adventure...

We grilled bear and moose steak, while sampling some deer sausage on the side with some boiled coffee and Coca-Cola slush puppies. Needless to say, I'm pleased with the day and would consider it to be a great primer for the big trip in Grand Lake Stream. T-minus 12 Days!!!

Have a good one,

The Downeast Duck Hunter

3 comments:

Amber Laird said...

Nice post and very nice catch!

Terry Scoville said...

Sounds like another successful outing. Great catch and a very nice new "header" photo. Looking good DEDH!

wanderingowloutside said...

Bear and moose steaks...dude. Nice catch! I am quite jealous of Amber and you being able to ice fish for salmon.