Special update forthcoming tomorrow! Have a safe New Years
Everything is on hold until New Years Day. Look for a special
update as I look back at the last couple of seasons and what's in store
for the future.
Mik Lurch Tackle Outlet from Hammond, IN will be at the upcoming
Novi, MI Fishing Show with a good selection of my tackle.
Indiana is probably where my line of products has gained widest
acceptance. This is partly due from Ralph at Mik Lurch.
Ralph regularly fishes Lk. Michigan and knows what meat/my stuff can
do. Especially, on the deep fish. Like the last couple springs
(April & May). I'll post booth location and exact dates of
the Novi Fishing Show when this info becomes available.
Mik Lurch carries a full line of
tackle catering to the Musky, Bass, Walleye, and big water Salmon
fishermen. If you're in the market for anything to do with our
fishery, check out Mik Lurch Tackle, during the upcoming spring show
Click for 12" Blue
for 10" BTI Blue Maui
Also, Ralph said several good things about the Blue Maui flashers,
both in the 10 and 12 inch sizes. The ongoing assault of the
zebra mussels has a lot to do clarity of Lake Michigan. From
my experience, blue has always worked best in gin-clear waters.
Several have asked for more info on scheduled seminar for the
upcoming Birch Run, MI, fishing show put on by the Flint
Steelheaders. The truth is, the show staff is still getting
everything together and I do not know the exact details.
I do have a handle on our presentation
which will feature speakers that have lots of water time with my
products and herring. More to come as the show draws
The date for the show is March 2nd thru 4th
and it's being held at the Birch Run Expo Center. This place
is easy to find and can been seen just just off I75, north of the
Birch Run exit and just west of expressway. Click
for last year's show booth
Things to look forward to in 2007? The promise of how the
season unfolds is a mystery to us,...for now. Will it be a
good year? Will the fishing slow down?
All fishermen are eternal optimists.
Defeatism has no place in our sport that searches the unknown dark
depths we can not see into. Fishermen put forth patience, to
be rewarded with the next bite, hit, nibble, or strike...sooner, or
Getting back to the opening line of
"things to look forward to in 2007," Memorial Day
Weekend, will be a get-together for our message board members in
Manistee, MI. If you're looking to polish your skills and
improve your meat program, I will be there to furnish hands-on
support for those in need of it. Please let me add, so
will a lot of our members who have the program down pat to share
their vast knowledge base with you. Being a board member is not a prerequisite.
More details coming in 2007......
Several have asked for more info on scheduled seminar for the upcoming
Birch Run, MI, put on by the Flint Steelheaders. The truth is, the
show staff is still getting everything together and I do not know the
I do have a handle on our presentation which
will feature speakers that have lots of water time with my products and
herring. More to come as the show draws closer.
The date for the show is March 2nd thru 4th and
it's being held at the Birch Run Expo Center. The place is easy to
find and can been seen just just off I75, north of the Birch Run exit
and just west of expressway.
Things to look forward to in 2007? The promise of how the
season unfolds is a mystery to us,...for now. Will it be a good
year? Will the fishing slow down?
All fishermen are eternal optimists.
Defeatism has no place in our sport that searches the unknown dark
depths we can not see into. Fishermen put forth patience, to be
rewarded with the next bite, hit, nibble, or strike...sooner, or later!
Getting back to the opening line of
"things to look forward to in 2007," Memorial Day
Weekend, will be a get-together for our message board members in
Manistee, MI. If you're looking to polish your skills and improve
your meat program, I will be there to furnish hands-on support for those
in need of it. Please let me add, so will a lot of our
members who have the program down pat to share their vast knowledge base
with you. Being a board member is not a prerequisite. More
details coming in 2007......
I guess we all successfully completed the last holiday in
2006. 6 days from now, 2007 will ring in another season for Great
Lakes fishermen. Today will be spent take year a final ending
inventory in preparation for '07. Look for some new colors in
adjusting both the 10 and 12 inch flashers. By popular request,
there will be a 12 inch King Purple. In the 10 inch BTIs plans are
in the works for the Klear X-Glow like exist with the 12 inchers.
That means there will be a 10 inch X-Glow Black Mamba and X-Glow Krystal
Killer before our season gets off in mid to late April of 2007.
Merry Christmas to all! Regular updates will begin again, a
day or two after Christmas. Click
here for the new 2007 Super Mag Heads These multi use
meat heads are designed for whole herring, but still do a fine job
On the same date of the 23rd, but in August 2006 we were locked
in a nasty struggle with too many Kings smacking our flashers and
meat rigs. I think you'll find the newly completed article
about summer catching worth the click!
here for the whole reel story
Getting back to the E10 gas, this subject is far too complex to
cover it here in a few paragraphs. I set up a special temporary
"Open to the Public" Forum at our message board where all can
become enlightened that concerns all boat owners.
Besides, this a good way for those who think
they're locked out our message board. The truth is: we're locked
in to protect us from spam, petty arguments and the unscrupulous few
with a hidden agendas. Click
here for the E10 discussion
I'd like to thank all our message board
members and especially, our resident boat guru, Mike W for his valuable
contributions on the subject of E10 fuels.
Today's featured photos is from our message board members
showing their Christmas trees decorated with some of the products I
manufacture. Words do not describe my regard to the support I get from
a great group of Great Lakes
fishermen, bar none! I promise to keeping earning
their loyalty in 2007.
With Christmas only a few days off,
it's time to cherish our family, loved ones and friends. It's
all to easy to lose sight of the true meaning of Christmas in
today's fast paced society. We are the sum of those around us
who enrich our lives.
Yesterday, was a reality check for
me, with a dire family emergency and spent several hours in a
hospital waiting room thinking about the words I wished, .....I
but never did. Please don't make this same mistake.
The United States Coast Guard has put on hold plans on the Great Lakes
for live fire zones. I want our armed services as ready as any, but
having navigated the Great Lakes from Petoskey to South Haven on Lk.
Michigan. On Lake Huron from Harrisville to Lexington, I've
seen no safe place devoid of boats, or freighters. Even being offshore in Lake Michigan 30
miles out, generally there's always a vessel within eyeshot on the
for Coast Guard fire power
I've made long boat runs in excess of 150 miles
(one-way) and speak from experience. My long haul voyages were
the result of moving my charter operation from port to port in the
late 80s thru 2003.
The very important news about possibly
un-label E10 fuel and your boat has been postponed for a day, or
two, while more hard facts are gathered.
Please pay close attention to today's update concerning E10, ethanol
based fuels. Our resident boat technician on our message board,
Mike W. is in tune with what's going on. Many of the older boats
are not set up to handle this cornpone gas. The 10% alcohol based
gas can break down gaskets and soften fuel lines.
It was a used-to-be fact, ethanol fuels were labeled
such at the gas stations. I guess, this is no longer
required. According to Mike W. alcohol content in the gas you
purchase can exceed the 10%. There's issues with fuel separation
during winter storage too. I've asked Mike to advise us all and
he'll be charge of the next few updates that can save you grief and your
Was up late last night continuing work on an article that will
debut this coming Christmas Day. This commentary is directed
towards teaming up X-Glow colors for August Kings. If you're
looking for the least complicated way to fill your box, you should
find this piece very helpful. Especially, if you're new to
With less then 2 weeks left in 2006, laying
a solid foundation for the 2007 is in the works. The plan is
to ring in the New Year with an exciting brand new product, that
will provide options and make your time on the water more
productive. This will be the 5th new item intro since I went
into the tackle manufacturing business in 2004.
The local fishing news here in Manistee is fairly good.
The Big Manistee River was decent in the lower stretch. The
our snow melt increased the run-off and cause the river to get a
little on the muddy-side. I heard a few Steelhead were being
caught the Manistee piers on spawn when the wind allows access.
Now to follow-up on the story about Capt.
Joel N and his successful push to win the 2006 Captain of the Year
award. Capt. Joel prefers the 10 inch BTI flashers over the 12
inch models and runs a small, but clean spread. 2 riggers and
2 divers are his mainstay, along with some lead core. His
choice for the early bite is the X-Glow and standard glow flashers I
offer. Later in the day, the brighter (mid-day) he switches to
the brighter regular colors like Mountain Dew. Click
for Mountain Dew BTI
The history of "Team Becky Sue" and how they won the
Captain of the Year title continues today. This I think you're
find pretty amazing in the tally of the 9 Metro West Steelheader
Tournaments they fished. "Team Becky Sue" won an
astonishing 5 times, had 2 seconds and 2 third place finishes! Click
for team photo
While this might sound a little corny to
you, the thing that I admire most about their dominating campaign to win
their club's title, it was a father/son dual effort. My hat is off
to Capt. Joel and his fine son Ben for a job well done!
Oh yeah, only one more thing needs to be
said, they used my product line pretty much exclusively in every contest
they fished. Tomorrow?.....What they like best.
The higher power sure works in mysterious ways! Today's
planned update is about keying on my X-Glow line for adult August
Kings. Low and behold, in my email box, there was a message
sent to me by Capt. Joel N. about his success last season with the
stuff I make. Plus, several photos from his Metro West
Steelheaders Tournament from last August in Frankfort, MI. So,
today's update fell right in my lap! Here's Capt. Joel
"Hi John, Me again. Here are some pictures from our club tourney in Frankfort 2006. 1st place finish for the
"Becky Sue." We had 15 fish in the box before 9:30am! All on meat rigs. 2 riggers
& 2 dipsys. Mostly glows"....Joel N, Capt. of the
There's more to this story than meets
the eye & worthy of further explanations in this weekend's
updates. Here's a teaser: Joel and his son Ben fished 9
They finished in the top three (podium finishes), EIGHT
times! More tomorrow......
for Ben "Crewman of the Year"
for reel-proof of X-Glows in Aug
Snow scale at my place is still stuck on 46 inches since Oct.
As long as the herring photos are still posted, it's a good idea
to expand further on something you can't see, namely smell, or
scent. Those that bow hunt know how a deer can smell you, long
before you see them. Bow hunters use scent lock clothing and
hunt high up trees to disperse
human odor above deer's keen noses.
Trappers are especially adept at using
scents to their favor, but first they boil their traps, then dip the
traps in wax to remove any trace of human scent. Serious
trappers I know, use parts of the animal they're after, as a lure
and scent cover.
So, now that I established the important of
scent in the outdoors, the same premise applies to fish. It's
been said, Salmon can smell trace elements to parts per
billion. Why don't you put the scent of herring to work in
your favor (if you haven't already) for our Great Lakes fish?
The learning curve is short and the results are stretched out in
full boxes, or limit catches all
season long. Click
As promised, the photo of the freeze dried herring, after soaking in
water for 24 hours is our "Photo of the Day." As far as
I'm concerned, we're still in the stone age of fishing meat, or herring
on the Great Lakes. Granted meat will produce results most can't
even imagine, but the choke point is: having readily available bait.
After soaking for about a day, the freeze
dried stuff looked about as good as the strips from the Canadian
company. The smell is right-on, as no preservatives, or chemicals
are used in the freeze drying process. The texture is excellent
and if my guess if correct, one strip will last thru many, many fish
Will this freeze dried stuff work? Only
time will tell as the 2007 season unfolds. From what I seen and
smelled, I'm willing to go on record....it will However, until it
does, the jury is still out! Click
for re-constituted freeze dried herring
My sincere thanks for the many who've ordered my line of tackle for
Christmas gifts. This a supreme compliment in my book and does not
go unnoticed. I truly appreciate your patronage more than any
feeble words I can put together!
Posted a picture today of some freeze dried
herring. I have a piece soaking and it's starting to look pretty
darn decent (that photo will be posted tomorrow). This
herring has the correct smell, in fact....I can't tell it from fresh
frozen. Is this the answer?.....who knows until we try it in
2007. The convenience of freeze dried bait would eliminate all
storage problems. Click
for freeze dried Pacific Ocean Herring
Snow scale is still stuck on 46 inches.
Today's featured photo of Tim's trophy 21 pound Steelhead is
enough to make anyone's jaw drop. Giant Steelhead over 20
pounds are hard to come by, especially when you take into account,
this monster was caught in a river. There's a whole bunch of
stuff that can go wrong when you do battle in a river, or stream.
Obstructions, like snags and sunken trees add to the
challenge. Steering fish away from potential problems takes a
clear head and excellent rodsmanship!
My many thanks goes to message board
member, Capt. Andy S. for sharing his great photo with us. Click
here for one helluva Steelhead
It's black powder season in my area and the deer are becoming
more settled down, if compared to the later part of the recent rifle
season. I had a 40 yard shot on a decent 10 pointer that I passed
on. Knowing I could kill it was good enough for me! This
deer was by my blind for a good hour with a one doe. When he came
in the 6 does hitting the bait pile scooted. This pack of 6 does
were more skittish than the buck. It seems to me, if a doe is not
in estrous for breeding, they do not want nothing to do with buck around
for a photo of lucky 10 pointer
There's plenty of venison already in my
freezer already from a couple of buddies that scored bucks with rifles
back in November. I've seen a huge non-typical with more points
than a football game. If that big rascal comes snooping around I
will drop the hammer,.....and you can bet on that. Snow scale
is still stuck on 46 inches.
First time there's no additional snow to record. The next
few days into late next week look a lot better then the last 10 days
Cemented the deal for the new 2007 product
(to be announced around the first of the coming New Year) with my
tooling company. Tools or dies for injection molding are
expensive to say the least. So, funding, water-testing and
behind the scenes engineering is an all-important part of a time
Full scale production on the new product
will hit full stride by late March and ready for the consumer market
by early April 2007. There's a long story on what's gonna be
new for 2007, but I'll save that for another update down the road.
No new snow to report, total
snowfall since Oct. 2006 stands at 46 inches.
You have to marvel at the guile of the attorneys representing the
tribes involved in the much awaited Consent Decree. These
crafty attorneys parlayed into the agreement, 15% of the Chinook
returning to the Little Manistee River and a spring spearing season
for Michigan's most venerated cold water Trout specie, Steelhead. This
info is still not confirmed, as the federal courts haven't released
the gag order.
These fish were not even thought of when
the Treaty of 1836 was signed! The only good thing I heard,
there will be no more gill nets, which in itself, is a big
victory! I know, first-hand how deadly gill nets are and seen the Lake Trout
totally devastated in 1975 & 1976 in the Little Traverse Bay, by
kill-everything gill netters.
Overall snow: 39" plus 7" yesterday, equals 46
inches since Oct 06 Click
Here's what rumorville has churned out yesterday about the
upcoming Consent Decree: 14 tips ups per tribal member, 4 lines per tribal
member, spearing as a means of fishing in most cases, daily bag limits twice the
quantity of white fisherman, & a season to spear Steelhead in the Little
Manistee. The tribal ethics do not exist in the eyes of the
Michigan Sportsman, especially in methods used to take fish.
More needs to come to light about the
rights of the Indians to hunt on residential, or private
property. As a bargaining chip, tribes pushed for timber
rights on "unsettled" lands a bunch of what I consider, as
ridicules militant demands. There's a lot more going on here,
than meets the eye and when I hear more, you will too!
The tribes want to exist as an independent
nation, within our nation. Common sense says; what's going on,
is plain wrong when super citizens can rule the roost.
snow: 36" plus 3" yesterday, equals 39 inches since
As promised, today's and the next few will be about the rumored
Consent Decree settlement with the tribes of Bay Mills, Ste. Marie
Chippewa, Grand Traverse Ottawa-Chippewa, Little River Ottawa, and the
Little Traverse Bay Odawa Indians. This Consent Decree stems from
the Treaty of 1836 and pertains to Indian rights to inland hunting
(public & private lands) and fishing in lakes, rivers and streams.
Before I get rolling, let me lay the groundwork
for my decidedly opinionated comments. I went to public school in
the 1950s thru the mid 1960s and we recited the Pledge of Allegiance
every morning. To this day, I remember the part of; "one
nation, under God with liberty and justice for all." So,
pardon my bias, after all I was indoctrinated by our school systems for
12 years with the ideals from the Pledge!
Here's what I heard, Indian deer season starts
the day after Labor Day and runs until January 1st. 5 deer, 3 of
which must be antlerless. 15% of the yearly river Chinook harvest
belongs to the tribes.....and yes, spears, bows and arrows are OK.
Do not get worked up over this, as the
State of Michigan negotiators did their best with a bleeding-heart
federal court heavily tilted towards the Indian rights.
The official Consent Decree has not been
released yet (to my knowledge) and what I've stated so far, is only
hear-say for the time being. More info tomorrow!
Overall snow: 34" plus 2"
yesterday, equals 36 inches since October 2006
There's a whole world full of people selling, or making tackle
willing to tell you how good their products are. Myself?
....I'd rather prove it! It's proven reel-fact my stuff will
fill the box with "ease of effort" from April, well into
October. Just page thru the archived reports from 2004 thru
2006 in: "Capt. John's
Next on the agenda is to prove how
durable and the punishment my products can stand up to. During
seminars, people are invited to stand on the Magnum Meat Head, using
just their heel on a hard surface. Thusly, demonstrating
Being known for taking things to a
higher level, I have several flashers in the 10 and 12 inch sizes
nailed to the post that holds my mail box up.
My place in Manistee County is on
a major highway. The snow plows blast by the mailbox at 45 to
50 mph, throwing salt, slush, rocks & road gunk at the same
speed! The plan is to leave the flashers on the post, exposed
all winter, then take the flashers off the post and go fishing with
them in 2007. Click
for a reel torture test
You'll note in the photo the
protector I have built around the mail box. Without the
protecting layers of 2' by 4's and 3/4" OSB, the snow plows
explode the mail box. Having lost two boxes last winter, I was
forced to build the shielding in the photo!
Overall snow: 28" plus 6",
equals 34 inches since October 2006
The Flint Steelheaders Show in (Birch Run, MI Mar. 2 thru 4, 2007)
contacted me about seminars and booth space. I will have 30 feet,
expanded from 20 foot last year. I requested the last time slot
for a Saturday seminar, this way, if we run over on time, no big
deal, as there's no one to follow our presentation.
I am going to keep a running total of daily
snowfall in Manistee County this winter, cuz I do not believe the
weather service yearly averages. Every time we get a measurable
snow, it will be added at the end of the daily updates. So far,
until yesterday, 24 inches if a light side estimate. Add 4 inches
on 12/3/06 for a total of 28" at my place as of today.
Available tools to the modern day big lake fisherman are a heck of a
lot easier to come by with the advent of the internet blossoming in the
later 1990s. No longer are you on a solo quest in search of Great
Lakes fishing knowledge.
Our message board members are probably one of
the best informed groups on the internet. In season, daily port
reports from all over the Great Lakes on what's working, what's not, and
where the best place to fish is. Taking advantage of this valuable
resource is entirely up to you. Click
here for sign up form
Are you a 2, or 3 fish a morning fisherman and
wonder how others at the cleaning table got a full box? If you're
looking for a drastic improvement catching department on a more
consistent basis, then......our message board is tailor made for you!
Digging out from 20 inches of snow is the deal for today. Snow
started at 8am yesterday morning and by 5pm we had 16.9" (according
to the weather service). At times, we were getting over 3 inches
an hour. Then, overnight we
got more of the white stuff. My new metal roof handled the snow
storm as intended, cuz most all the snow slid off! Click
to see how a metal roof performs
Living in the northern Michigan requires
the ability to cope with heavy winter snowfalls. We get a lot of
the white stuff in Manistee County. Weather Service says,
Manistee's total yearly snow averages 100 to 140 inches. To this I
say, hogwash! We've already got at least 24 inches (conservative
estimate) this fall and it's still 3 weeks away from the official
beginning of winter.
Last page to turn on the 2006 calendar and about time to hang up
a new one, as 2007 is just around the corner. 2006 was, and is
an extraordinary year for Kingfish Products. The BTIs gained
widespread acceptance and when teamed with the new accompanying 2 Fly Meat Rigs,
tons of Salmon & Trout went in the box.
What's been accomplished so far
2004: 12 inch Reel Flashers were introduced.
2005: Magnum Meat Heads, 3 Fly Meat Rigs, and bullet
heads (for flies).
2006: 10 inch BTI Flashers, 2 Fly Meat Rigs.
2007: What's Capt. John got up his sleeve for this
On, or around the first of the new year.....there will be a special
Stuck in a rut? Is your program the same-O, same-O every time
off the dock? It sure doesn't hurt a thing staying open
minded. Try not develop a love affair with any one certain
color. I've never seen any one color/pattern that will stay
hot all season long. So, opt for a fresh approach each time
off the dock.
2006 testing sessions on my part have
proven that trying different stuff will whack and stack. The
bi-chromatic program used back on 8/23/06 impressed even me and I'm
hard to impress. Unless, it's head and shoulders above what
Many have asked me, "how do you
find fish" and "what's your plan when I'd leave
harbor?" Truth is: I never had a plan and let
circumstances dictate the appropriate course of action.
Flexible, and not stubborn is the key to a full box. I saved many a
charter by moving the boat 5 miles to a new location, cuz if you
ain't catching, there's nothing under your boat. Keep this in
mind, the next time your action is skimpy!
Normark's purchase of Luhr Jensen & Sons, formerly of Hood
(now in China) has entered a new phase. Normark ended the
relationship of the sales teams that represented Luhr Jensen
products at the sport shows since about 1970. It will be
interesting to see if Normark hires Chinese to man their show booths
in 2007. No state has been hit harder with outsourcing and
loss of jobs than Michigan. So, keep that in mind, the next
time you consider purchasing Luhr Jensen products.
Next subject: The standard of the
diver industry is Dipsy Divers from Luhr Jensen. While this
diver does do it's job, it's hard to adjust the release tension,
over-priced (for what you get), and the cheapie wire loops open up
when the solder breaks. The Dipsy dates back to the early
1970s (possibly earlier) and this type of product needs to be
brought up to the standards of the i2ks. In 2007, I intend to
dive deeper into this all important piece of equipment, used every
time we fish!
With firearms deer season getting ready to close, here some of my
observations from living in the Manistee National Forest. In 2005
there was a heavy acorn crop and little snow, so the deer ate better
last winter. January 2006 was the warmest on record and this kept
the deer in prime condition. Bucks carried their horns well into
March, which normally drop off in late December. A mild winter and
easy to reach food helped the does carry a good fawn drop. Racks I
seen this fall were huge by Manistee County standards. I have not
shot a deer, passing on average bucks, holding out for a trophy animal
and black powder season.
Came across a scary thought yesterday. The tackle season
begins in earnest with the start of the sport show season. In
my case, that's about 90 days away from the Flint Steelheaders
Spring Fishing Show held in Birch Run Michigan. March 2 thru
the 4th, 2007. Now, 90 days just doesn't seem like enough time
to stock up more inventory and bring an entire brand new product
line into production.
SteveO and DickieP (message board members)
were on the fish this past weekend out of the port of Algoma, WI on
Lk. MI. Their catch pushed double figures with 'Bows (Wisconsin
talk for Steelhead) and next year's Kings. You have to tip
your hat to the dedication of all late season anglers that extend
their seasons. Click
38 years ago, when I began my life long journey into the realm
of big water Salmon fishing there was no path to success. It
was like trying to find your way out of a thick cedar swamp,
blindfolded! This was all to change with time, as Great Lakes
fishermen became more adapt as the many seasons unfolded.
In this day and age, it's fairly easy
to achieve at least moderate skill levels your first season
out. The leaps forward in techniques, electronics, and tackle
has moved us light years forward in the last 4 decades. The
strides made since the first adult run of Great Lakes Salmon back in
1967 is truly,....way beyond amazing!
Here's some simple tips I've adopted
over the years: stay open minded, do not have a favorite lure, learn
boat speed from watching the rigger cables and do not believe
anything unless you see it work, or it comes from a trusted source.
Look for the 2007 updated version of the new Pearl Squirrel
flashers in both the 10 and 12 inch sizes either later today, or
tomorrow. Weather in Manistee County, MI has been nice when you
consider it's the last part of November.
Christmas gift certificates? Call 800 552-2009
for more details.
Was up last last night balancing out the 10" BTI flashers
to match up with the existing product line of the 12" Reel
Flashers at: www.michiganangler.com
Having the exact, same colors in both models takes the guess
work/trial & error out of the equation. If the fish are
whacking, let's say, a Green Bubble 12" Reel Flasher on your
port out-down rigger, then running a Green Bubble in the 10"
BTI on your port diver is logical. This makes sense. I
know it works from water tests in 2006. Having a mono or
bi-chromatic presentation is far better than chasing all over the
The way I look at things?... is with
the K.I.S.S. rule = keep it simple stupid. Making matters worse
with too much thought seldom leads to a full box.
Have a great Thanksgiving Day.
Let's answer a couple of questions emailed to me. First,
the 2007 Flint Steelheaders Show at Birch Run, MI will be held on
March 2, 3 & 4, 2007.
Second, it was recommended for
me to raise gripe about the proposed increases in our hunting and
fishing licenses with the MDNR. This will do no good, and do
nothing, but fall on deaf ears. I view our fishing license
prices as fair, cuz in one morning the return on your investment is
paid with a box full of Salmon. Fair market value on Salmon
fillets runs from 6 to 8 bucks a pound. Not a bad deal....eh?
At one time, before attending a DNR
meeting in 2005, I would have pitched a major bitch concerning
license prices. After seeing the budgetary shortfalls and
being told about how our fishery monies were being raided by Lansing
bureaucrats and transferred into the "general fund" my
mind changed in a big hurry. Incidentally, this can not happen
again. There was a proposal passed in our last election to
prevent this crap from happening again. Fishing license
fees/monies will stay with the DNR from now on! By the way,
this proposal passed by a whopping a 4 to 1 margin.
Recently, there was King caught in the Big Manistee River of
almost 27 pounds. A good fish for this season, especially for
a river Salmon. When Kings enter rivers they loose weight big
time. Back in October of 1987, my river clients took a King
that measured a good 44 inches. This King on Lake Michigan in
August should have pushed 35 pounds. The actual weight of this
Salmon pushing 4 feet long....on fairly reliable scales?.... a
disappointing 25 pounds.
Work is moving along nicely on the meat rig
kits, as photo work is on the schedule for today. We'll be
shipping out our first load of the kits today and thanks to the many
that purchased sight unseen. This is the 3rd year kits have
been offered. So, I think the repeat buyer already have a good
idea of what's included. Click
This Thanksgiving week full fledged production on 2007
products/inventory continues. Re-stocking all products that
were sold out last August, have been replenished and are
available.....right now at: www.michiganangler.com
Photos for the meat rig kits is
my task at hand for this week and I hope to have all the photos
installed by turkey day. This is the 3rd season the highly
popular meat rig kits have been offered and they always sell-out by the end of
The 2007 is only 40 some days away. Preparation for our
upcoming new season (2007) began back on 8/23/06 when we tested a
new color pattern on Lake Michigan aboard John J's boat, the
"Megan Ann." The test color was a companion to the
ultra popular Blue Bubble, the Green Bubble. Trying to keep
this secret was gonna be impossible, so there was a sneak peak right
before Labor Day 2006.
The reel-facts on the Green Bubble?......it
out-produced the Blue Bubble at a 4 to 3 advantage. So, in simpler
terms, a 25% lead was the Green Bubble's margin over the hard to
beat Blue Bubble pattern. Click
for 2007 Green Bubble BTI 10" flasher.
Congratulations to Mr. John J on his opening day trophy 10 point
buck. John's shot several deer over the past seasons, but this is
his largest to date. John puts his time in, scouts deer runways,
then figures out a timetable of the deer moving past his blind.
Also, he took a 6 point back in October with his bow. Click
for 10 pt.
Busy putting the finishing touches on the 2007
Meat Rig Kits. The page to display the kits and what's offered can be
located by clicking
here. Photos haven't been posted yet, but will be this
coming week. Unlike 2005 and 2006 the 2007 Meat Rig Kits are
offered to all and not just to our private message board
members. These kits are limited are a time special offer and
will not be stocked all year.
No deer hunting for me yesterday, or today! Fast at work
getting the 2007 Meat Rig Kits in some semblance order, so the kits
can debut next week.
Why does my stuff work?......you might ask
yourself. Today's featured photo should answer that question
beyond a doubt, cuz everything matches up well! Anything to do
will fishing involves presentation, and I promise you the best
dressed meat combinations presentation surpassed by no one, or any
No brag, just fact! Click
for photographic proof
Had an extremely good day in the woods yesterday. Seen 5
deer, a fox and 3 grey squirrels. The fox ambled a scan 20
feet from my blind. John J shot a big 10 pointer and a photo
of the his trophy Manistee Co. whitetail will be posted soon.
The main part of my WTP tape order
arrived yesterday. This coming Monday?
....news on what's
going to be offered in meat rig kits. Plus, there'll be a 2007
flasher update special deal including the deadly Green & Blue
Bubbles in the 10" & 12" sizes.
I set the administration permission to the shopping cart at: www.michiganangler.com
ALL members of our message board will get a 10% discount upon
entering the correct code. This special "members
only" 10% savings will expire 12/24/06 and is good for all
products, across the board (except trolling bags) at the webstore.
Good luck and may all have a safe hunt in the woods today.
This is Michigan's un-official holiday: firearms deer season!
In this day and age of politically correct, harvesting is an
over-used word when it comes to hunting. Myself? ...I've never
harvested a deer, but I have killed some, then butchered and ate
I did receive an order from WTP (Witchcraft
Lure Tape), but it was sample pieces and not my main order.
So, the 2007 meat rigs kits are still on hold for the time being
One of Ludington, Michigan's most dedicated, hard core anglers
was back harassing the fish on 11/12/06. I'm speaking of our
message board member, "Capn. Kirk." He had a heck of
a morning, boxing out a 2 person limit of Steelhead ('bows), a Brown
Trout and a couple of next year's Kings. Kirk shared,
"most of the fish were taken off inline planer boards and the
Kings liked the riggers set at 40 feet down."
here for Capt. Kirk's a mixed bag Lk. MI catch on 11/12/06
His action came pretty much straight out of port, with the 90 t0 100
foot depths producing. Kirk is my UPS delivery driver and
lives in Ludington, so he's able to take advantage (when the lake is
calm enough) of this late season awesome fishery!
Forecast for the firearms opener for deer in my area is a
disappointing lack of snow. Having the floor of the woods
covered in white makes movement easier to see in low light periods
when the deer seem to move more.
Whitetails in Manistee County, MI are more
plentiful than this time last season. Record warmth last
January has helped the herd in my area a bunch.
Today, my order from WTP is scheduled for
delivery via UPS. Our Ludington port reporter, Capt. Kirk is
my driver. So, some current news on the big lake fishing
situation from Ludville should be forthcoming.
Tomorrow's update will feature a sneak
preview on what's up for 2007 from Kingfish Products, Inc.
Offering the best system to fish meat will be enhanced
Let's breath some fresh life into this website with news about
the color selections in the 2007 meat rig kits to be announced later
this week. There's a new article on the horizon about last
August's fish war on 8/23/06. Steelhead fishing on the Big
Manistee River with a "hands on" report could be in order,
if the weather holds for this Tuesday. Michigan's unofficial
holiday of November 15th, means the firearms opener for deer starts
this Wednesday and that needs to be covered too.
A new A to Z article is in the works about
fishing meat with several of our message board members
contributing. Different points of view with a common
goal to fill your box in 2007 will be attention-grabbing!
A wet snow first knocked out my electrical power, then my
internet line connection has been sporadic at best. Best off,
to skip today's update for technical reasons beyond my control.
I had the opportunity to fish Manistee Lake with Capt. Tom Rasmussen
yesterday morning for a couple of hours. We had 2 bites and
managed a small jack Coho for our efforts. A strong NW wind
was not in our favor, so we quit a little early.
Capt. Tom truly likes to fish and having
time to spend with added to my morning. The excitement level
is his voice when a fish hits is genuine, just like him.
Trolling in Manistee Lake requires a small
boat to troll slow, like 1 to 1.5 mph. Flatfish in the X5 to
U20s are the preferred lures for this late season inland fishery.
The size of our catch does not reflect the
enjoyment factor of just being able to get away from 2007 tackle
production duties and design projects. This marks the first
time since late August I finally made some time for myself,
something I intend on trying to do more often. Click
here for a Manistee Lake jack Coho.
Today's update is good news from the Big Manistee River.
The lower half seems to decent for the time being. Message
board member 2-shot landed 2 Steelies, just a day or two ago.
Most of the leaves have came down, including the oaks, meaning the
river should be in good shape for both plug and spawn fishing.
Hit and miss from Manistee Lake is another story
that needs mentioning. Hope to have fresh news on this subject
in tomorrow's update.
Here's a fishing report from Kewaunee, WI from Capt. Steve S on
"Capt. John...Meat still works in November! Sunday started fishing at the crack of
noon...(just have to love this meat stuff!) was a bit bumpy from the south.
So, motored south and trolled with them back to the harbor. 3 for 3 in a
short trip. Blue was the color of choice, BTIs on leadcore and a dipsey.
Thanks Again!" Steve S.
We still have dedicated message
board members fishing the big pond. Capt. Kirk says it's
been hit and miss from Ludington, MI. Kirk has worked the
water from the bath-house (south of Point Big Point) to the
harbor. When he has scored, the Steelhead ('bows) have been
better sized then last year at this time. Click
Go vote today! Best part of the election being held
today? I will no longer have to endure tacky negative TV
commercials, at least for the next 18 months.
American politics are a complex subject. So,
vote your conscience. If you want a fresh perspective on war, turn
the clock to a time when you're 18 years old. Then get a letter
from the Selective Service telling you where and when to report for your
pre-induction physical (like I did in 1965). The Selective Service
(draft) will even provide you with free transportation to the closest
military base to where you live.
Manistee Lake's south arm, where the Little
Manistee River empties in was showing decent fishing last
week. A 50/50 mix of Steelhead and Coho.
October's rain and almost flood stage high
water curtailed reports from the Big Manistee River. November
looks a lot better and hope to find out for myself soon.
Mid-term election 2006 has 2 important issues at stake for
Michigan Sportsman! Proposal 1 deals with the Michigan State
Legislature not being able to raid funds collected from outdoor
activities such as fishing/hunting licenses. Voting yes on
Proposal 1 ensures these monies stay under the umbrella of the
sportsman and do not become part of the general fund to be
squandered by our greedy elected officials.
Proposal 3 is for establishing a
hunting season for doves to be regulated by our MDNR. Many
other states do allow seasonal hunting for doves.
Tomorrow's update......who to vote
The part of Manistee County, MI I reside in has about 100 to 150
inches of snow per year. It snows in Manistee some where's
around 100 days per year. We get this snowfall from the mixed
blessing of living close to Lake Michigan with lake effect snow from
the prevailing westerly winds that pick up moisture over the big
Metal roofs are a way to combat snow
buildup and reduce heavy roof loads, as snow will tend to slide
off. Adamczak Construction recently install a metal roof on my
house and I do recommend them. If you live in Mason, Benzie or
Manistee Counties, Bob Adamczak can be reached at (231) 723-6769. Click
for metal roof going on
There's been a bunch of scuttle butt about the United States Coast
Guard wanting to create over 30 live fire zones on the Great
Lakes. This is a dumb idea!
I navigated the waters on Lake
Michigan from Frankfort to South Haven in long non-stop boat
moves. On Lake Huron from Harrisville to Port Austin, including
long single run boat moves to the Raisin River, thru the St.
Clair/Detroit Rivers into Monroe Michigan. I know first hand how
small our Great Lakes are.
In the Manistee there's 2 freighter
channels. The first one is 5 to 7 miles off shore and the next one
is 10 to 12 miles out. I been 38 miles west of Frankfort and seen
the Wisconsin coast, while being harbored in Michigan.
Where is there an area that will be
safe from 50 caliber bullets that can skip across the water for several
miles? Next question?......how much target practice does one need
with a machine gun?
Here's a passed on email I received from Frank at Calumet Marine
who's a dealer for my product line in Illinois:
"Frank, I wanted to thank you for keeping me stocked up with Capt. John King Meat Rigs. What a difference they make. One day this past July we were heading out for the King's and I only had one of his left. We decided to stop at a tackle shop before we got to the ramp and bought 3 each of TWO DIFFERENT brands. We set up in 135 FOW and sent the Mountain Dew down first on the corner rigger. It went off before we could get another rod in the water. The final score....we put 3 fish in the net that morning with that Mountain Dew (2 off the riggers and 1 when we moved it to a dipsy), 2 fish on spoons, and never had a release on the other two brands of meat rigs. A five fish day for us on a day to where most people came in empty handed."
The higher power works in mysterious ways. I chose not to
overdo the update concerning a 2006 "Boat of the Year"
club title. Then, was rewarded with a many showings of a photo
from Frankfort, MI's ladies day tournament, taken last August on our local
TV channel. Click
for Ladies Day TV photo
TV 7 in Traverse City, MI showed today's
featured photo on the air about 6 times in a segment about last
summer's Salmon success. Free publicity can be hard to come
by, especially at this time of the year! One our message board
members must have sent the picture to the TV station, cuz I sure
didn't do it. Great photo & thanks!
Congrats to John J on his 6 point taken with a Mathews
Switchback XT. He said, "don't shoot one, cuz if you
do......you're going to want to buy it!" He bought his bow at
Capt. Chucks in Ludington and got a decent deal on a pricey item.
John puts his time in and was after a big
non-typical with more points, than a NBA basketball game. This
huge rack never came within bow range. For Manistee, the 6
pointer he took was a fair sized animal. Click
for John's 6 pt. buck
Halloween Update: To carry yesterday's update a step
further, traditional methods of a "beat the drum" sales
pitch about buying my stuff, cuz Team SCW won the Indiana's Salmon
Unlimited club title of "Boat of the Year," taint gonna
happen. I believe today's Great Lakes angler are sophisticated
beyond the point of heeding lame sales pitches, cuz of much over-heralded
I did find some far more interesting
and factual concerning of fishery. Contrary to popular
mythical opinion, the tournaments Frank's team won with meat were
the early in the season ones. I'm speaking of April, May and
June, the months attractor fishing were not supposed to be the big
deal. There's a transition happening to our fishery, as
attractors are starting to rule the roost all season long! Click
Today's spotlight is on Team Small Craft Warning from Calumet,
Indiana. They won the prestigious title of "Boat of the
Year" in their Salmon Unlimited Club.
On the human interest side of this story, Frank
is the leader of the SCW team, runs Calumet
Marine and fishes his club's tournaments with his two
If you live in, or around the area, Frank's
boat shop caters the specific needs of the Great Lakes fisherman and has
a full line of boats and motors.
Oh yeah, they do use my products and
here's a direct quote from Frank:
"John, All and all the second most important part of our success this year
has been, because of the products you sell for the herring presentation.
The first being the range and speed of our boat.
With out one, or the other the results would have changed significantly.
Thank You for helping us win the Boat of the Year Salmon Unlimited
Title."........Capt. Frank Martin Click
for Team SCM
Tomorrow's update will concern how Team
Small Craft Warning became "Boat of the Year" with the statistics
from the format their club uses for tourneys.
Lots of ground to cover this coming week. I'm in the
beginning stages of writing a new article about meat fishing.
I wrote a 7000 word piece back in the fall of 2003 and that article
is just plain outdated. The old article does not reflect the
advancements we've made. Also, this week look for updates
about bow hunting, Calumet Marine's "Boat of the Year"
title and security upgrades to our message board.
06 Tonight is when we set our clocks back an hour to
adjust our time. I generally forget and don't get all the
clocks switched around until Monday.
A big high-water flush brought in a good
amount of Steelhead in the lower stretches of Big Manistee River and
catching was said to be decent. Then, more high water (flood
stage) curtailed the action. Some Steelhead to 12 pounds were
being caught on Flatfish in Manistee Lake where the Little Manistee
River empties in.
Having perfect balance in both the 10 inch BTI and 12 inch Reel
Flashers is on the agenda before 2007. Last April, when the
BTI's were first introduced, some models like Pearl Squirrel, Silver
Bullet, Gold/Chartreuse were omitted, cuz of time restraints.
Not so, in 2007 as both the 10 and 12 inch model lines will be
I fished the matching 12" on the
riggers and 10" on the divers last August, with results you
probably wouldn't believe. So, I'll stop with what some might
see as a sales pitch and let you find out for yourself in
2007. Just keep mind, "no one in the world" offers a
complete total package directed at meat fishing for Trout &
Salmon like Kingfish Products. "No one in the
world"......is a bold, but true statement!
Today's focus will be a special thank you to Ludington, Michigan's
Capt. Kirk C. He went out of his way to supply a fresh fishing
update and a photo.
Not many in the Great Lakes community
share the supreme dedication of Kirk. He'll chase the fish on Lake
Michigan well into December (weather permitting). His boat is
rigged with a full enclosure (and a heater) to make his late season fish
treks in cold weather, at least tolerable. At this time of the
season Capt. Kirk enjoys the fact, he has the pond pretty much to
himself and limits often, fishing solo. Maintaining boat control,
fighting and netting fish is no easy chore, even for the most skilled!
My hat is off to Kirk for his
participation with this website, giving us fresh insights into a late
season, overlooked fishery! Click
here for Capt. Kirk, fish & his boat
Ordering future inventory took up most of yesterday. Meat
rig kits are in the works, where you can build totally completed
professional quality 2 and 3 meat rigs for under 6 bucks. Last
summer, I saw 3 flies in a package, no leader, no bead chain,
featuring no hardware. These 3 bare flies retailed 8.95 and
goes to show the value in the soon to be offered,
"do-it-yourself" meat rig kits.
Fall's next big outdoor activity is
firearms whitetail season, with the traditional opening day on
11/15/06. Hopefully, all parts and pieces will be in stock by
The meat rig kits should debut and be available before Thanksgiving.
Capt. Kirk, a port regular from Ludington, MI reported on
10/19/06 excellent Steelhead in and around the pier heads, with some
good sized next year's Kings. Capt. Kirk first broke the news,
back in December 2005 about better sized juvenile Kings, which
transposed into heftier Kings last summer.
Also, Kirk reported terrible weather with
wind & waves up the quazoo and was only able to get on Lake
Michigan one day out of seven last week. Since last August,
the weather in my neck of the woods have been whole bunch colder
than normal. October has been more like November. In
fact, today...I awoke to a ground covering of the dreaded white
for Capt. Kirk's 10/19/06 catch photo
Gaining experience? That's hard to do for a sport fisherman,
as our season lasts to the outside from May into October. Weekend
warriors are faced with maybe 15 good weekends a year to ply that trade
of producing fish, and...please let me add, under a extremely diverse
variety of circumstances!
Now, if you're lucky enough to get out 15
weekends a season, factor in blow days, further cutting into your time
on the big water. While the internet has helped the learning curve
and staying current with methods that work, there's no substitute for
time on the water. Learning from your poor outings, think about
what went wrong.
If you're not catching, do not blame
yourself! Often it's, because there's no fish under your
boat and a wise boat move to another area will show results. If
you're not seeing nets go down by other boats, you're in the wrong part
of the pond.
Getting my ducks in a row before work starts on another new
for 2007 is the task at hand this week. Water testing was
completed by some of the members
of our message board last August, and of course.....myself.
Conception to production is the next step.
This coming week's focus will be getting on track for the 2007
season. The highly popular meat rig kits, previously reserved
for message board members only, will be offered to the public this
year. "Do-it-yourself" meat rig kits will save you
at least 50% of the retail completed rigs and be a great winter
The exact materials from the ground up will
be included in the these meat rig kits. So, you'll have
everything in-hand to make your own meat rigs for 2007 and $ave!
Click here for what was
included in the 2006 kits
Plus, you'll have access to a how-to, step by step instructional
guide to build your own professional 2 and 3 fly meat rigs that out
class all the other manufactures.
What makes a good monofilament fishing line for use on our Great
Lakes? Properties that make a good casting line, being limp to
counter act line memory (coiling) doesn't do the job when it comes
to trolling. Downrigger line goes thru a tremendous
amount of abuse from being dragged thru the water, almost
Then, factor in the downrigger release mechanism, which adds further
wear and tear.
In my estimation and knowledge, no
manufacturer has ever formulated a good, hard, stiff line, and
abrasion resistant line with the wet knot strength need to satisfy
the all-around demands of the Great Lakes angler.
It seems like the later part of this year is running 2 to 4 weeks
ahead of schedule. October, generally one of the best months in
the north country has been riddled with rain, gale force winds, cold
temps, and snow (with more snow forecast).
Ludington's Capt. Kirk reports that Steelhead,
along with next season's Kings are being taken in shallower waters,
close to shore. Kirk is a late season, die-hard specialist that
pushes the big water season well into December, weather permitting.
Capt. Steve from Kewuanee sent in a photo
of a fat bellied 'Bow, or Steelhead taken on 10/15/06. Steve's
been one of our best sources of info from Wisconsin and I appreciate his
for a beer-gut Steelhead, or 'Bow in WI lingo
During the span of time since our Great Lakes inland waters
Salmon Fishery began 40 years ago, there has been huge advancements in
the complicated areas. Things like boats, motors and electronics
have moved forward at a pretty good clip.
Less complicated pieces of our tackle,
meaning the reels we use have either stayed the same and in some cases,
gotten worse from cheap entry level reels that do not hold up, even for
the weekend warrior.
I attribute lack of progress in reels directly
to the monopoly the Japanese and China currently have. Monopolies
cease improvement, and we're stick with a shoddy, piece of crap
reel. The Diawa LC47, of which the Diawa SG LC47 is based on
hasn't changed since it's introduction in 1986. Drags on any of
the nowadays reels seldom last for more then a season, under heavy
charter boat usage. Click for line
Bow hunters have been in for a tough go due to high winds, a
very rainy/wet October and sometimes snow. Buck to doe ratio
is way up, when compared to past seasons with some pretty darn good
racks being sighted.
Once my construction job is done and
the weather improves to more normal, Steelhead fishing on the Big
Manistee River is the next project to tackle. Rain has kept
the big river flowing and the leaf drop will be sooner than
usual. Dealing with fall river Steelhead is a true test of
your rodsmanship against one mean vicious critter.
American values? Those 2 words are a pretty complex
statement! To many it means the code we live by and to some it can
say something about what we manufacture. Now, it's hard to have
moralistic "American Values" when you look to have foreign
suppliers (outsourcing) provide parts/pieces for what you're gonna make.
It's kinda funny how many of our
industries have been siphoned off by cheap overseas labor, then no price
saving is passed down to the American consumer!!!
I challenge my competition in the tackle
business to list their suppliers like I have on: www.michiganangler.com
The only foreign supplier I use is VMC and there's bad news on the
horizon for this world famous hook supplier, as they're now under the
umbrella of Normark (Normark is highly involved with manufacturing
Steel in the France based company VMC
uses comes from the border close to Switzerland and we all know good
reputation Swiss steel has. If I get wind that VMC's are going to
be produced in China, my association with that company will end.
Lack of an acorn drop has kept the deer coming to bait
piles. Carrots, sugar beet and corn are getting chewed up in
short order. Manistee County, MI situation on this year's crop
of whitetails is much improved over last season. The record
Mild January 2006 has to be part of the increase in numbers.
If you're looking for a fall color
tour look to other parts of the state. High winds have blew
the leaves off the maples, birch and poplar trees around my
The reel cost of tackle?....it's only expensive, if it doesn't
work! Sport anglers are faced with a fairly short season, so
they don't have 200 days a year to experiment, or fine tune their
Big water fishing is costly and there's no
way around that fact. From the price tag of the boat, thru the
price gamut of riggers, rods to electronics, it costs a bunch to
partake in Great Lakes fishing. No disagreements
Buying the right tackle that works all
season, day-in, day-out will help defray of outflow
of your hard earned dollars and make your time on the water more
Up until the introduction of my product
line, nothing worked all season long. Granted several various
pieces and parts of tackle would have their time to shine, but no
one certain thing would fill your box all season long with
Friday the 13th? Good enough reason for me to skip today's
update and continue the epic saga on my past 24 years in the fishing
business next Monday.
From 1983 thru 2003, my livelihood depended on
my charter customers catching fish. I was fulltime, and had no
outside income, other than charter revenue from the Big Manistee River,
or what big lake charters produced. So, you learn in a hurry, no
fish equates to no charter guests, hence no money! To be continued
My journey into the land of fishing with meat started in the
mid-1980s. This trek was filled with many, many dead-ends of
products claiming to do the job, but only emptied my
wallet. During the next 20 years (almost), little to no
progress with a workable meat program from the "then existing
Buy this, try that, from a multitude
of manufacturers, all offering a mismatch of poor quality products,
meaning I had to sort the wheat from the chaff. Bait heads
that went thru the water like a dead stick. Rotating flashers
that twisted themselves off, because of inferior, cheapie nose
swivels. Frankly, most of the stuff I tried, never came close
to catching a fish and was soon retired to the junk bin.
During 2002, then in 2003....finally,
consistent results were achieved, as the long learning curve was
beginning to pay dividends. I learned to tune heads (so they
had the right spin), sort/modify flashers with Sampo swivels that I
could get by with.
Then, at the end of 2003, after seeing the
hodge-podge of mismatched stuff from several manufacturers, an idea
was born. Maybe, if I made right stuff?.... all under one
roof, with perfectly matched flashers and balanced meat heads/rigs
(that didn't need tuning) my future in the tackle manufacturing
Tomorrow's update will cover my long
venture into becoming a tackle producer, reel cost of tackle, and
old school American values.
The 2006 poll about what was your most productive methods, said
a lot of things. Spoons have retained about the same following
for the past 4 seasons. Flasher-Fly craze has continued to
slide downhill ever since 2003.
I guess the most important fact is 60% of
the people that frequent this website are not into meat. Maybe,
the 60% view using the oldest method in the world (bait) to catch
fish is beyond them, or a hoax. Click
here for the mentioned poll
Wire line divers, lead core and copper are
all, very old techniques dating back 50 some years, yet viewed...as
something kinda new nowadays. Our fishery is constantly
re-inventing itself and recycling methods that fell out of vogue for
a few decades.
If you're cynical about what I offer?
Honestly, I don't take offence and welcome all skepticism.
My product line has proved it's performance on the water to 40% of those voting in the
poll. Which, incidentally....was untainted as possible. I
could have jacked up the meat vote just by mentioning it to our 500
members on our message board. I chose not to solicit votes for
a more truthful, fair sampling!
Tomorrow's update will focus on why meat
did not work for me in the beginning.
Concluded my annual poll directed at what was your best method for
catching fish in 2006. While, I will elaborate further on the top
3 choices tomorrow, the biggest loser in overall market share was
J-Plugs. Click for
I think Normark's purchase of Luhr Jensen and
moving the manufacturing to China is a major part of this reason.
Michigan is probably number one marketplace in the world when it comes
to a market for products used in for Salmon fishing. Also,
Michigan has been hit hardest by foreign outsourcing of any State in the
USA. When people's livelihood is at stake, they vote with their
This I can say with total confidence, "it
will be a snowy day in hell before I EVER spend one red cent on any Luhr
Boat storage and winter lay-up time is here for many of you.
Take extra care in putting your boat away for the winter. Pull the
batteries, keep them in an area where you can trickle charge them a
couple of times during the winter.
Take care of any and all maintenance
according to your owner's manual. This is especially important for
outdrive owners, where the outdrive needs to be pulled and the top
universal joints need to be greased. Servicing stuff like this now
will get you on the water quicker in 2007 with a whole bunch less
Pay attention to your trailer wheel
bearings is sound advice. Losing a bearing due to lack of grease,
because of worn out seals can cost you a new hub and possibly a new
axel. Avoid big money problems by fixing the little ones now!
Patience is the key to all things concerning fishing. Guiding
on the Big Manistee for nearly 20 years, patience was the key in prodding
lock-jawed fish into striking. Leave the right thing there, long
enough with the proper presentation, then the rest will surely take care
This is holds true on the big lake when dealing with deep,
out of temp fish (in 38 to 44 degree water). While the fish will
not be nearly as aggressive, you can still score on mid-day, off peak
times for Salmon. Crowds lessen towards mid-day and fish do not
evaporate. So, look to the depths exceeding 100' down for a
Today, I had to turn down an invite for some October action
on Lake Michigan. Capt. Tom Rasmussen was kinda anxious to get
some licks in on Steelhead and next year's batch of Kings, but a major
construction project is keeping me home.
Our juvenile King are good sized for this time
of the season and that means, maybe even bigger Salmon for 2007. I
know the DNR takes the heat when things slide downhill with the fishery
and little credit for when it's good. The size vs. numbers
issue?....I think a return to the days of the 30 pounders will come back
some day, with the MDNR cutting the King plant by 25%....could be a step
in the right direction.
Today's new poll is the exact, same one I started running in
2003. So, far this sampling has shown meat fishing's market
share in 2003 was 17% and rose to 28% by 2005. It will be
interesting to see where this poll ends up in 2006.
Click here to
see the archived 2003, 2004 & 2005 polls
I know everyone that frequents this website does not use meat, but
if you're not regularly boxing 6 to 10 Kings each time you leave
that dock? Maybe, it would be a good idea if you started
pulling meat. Put sight, sound and scent to work for you!
Manistee County got hit by a thunderstorm/gulley washer 2 nights
ago. The Big Manistee River's flow at Tippy Dam is about 3000
cubic feet per second, which is twice the normal flow for this time
of the year. I'd say the lower river is at, or near flood
stage. So, if your upcoming, near future plans included river
fishing, it might be wiser to put that idea on hold for while.
Once the water overflows the bank, the grass and debris that gets
washed can make the BMR almost unfishable.
It's a whole bunch easier to be critical, than offer advice on how
to improve something. But, this is for sure, TV programs about our
sport of big water fishing leave a lot to be desired. Recently, I
seen two shows, here in the State of Michigan. One was about
Walleyes on Lake Erie and another focused on spring Salmon.
Both TV shows did little to relay what's really going on.
Without some kind of computer graphics,
watching anglers turn the handle on a reel doesn't do much in explaining
the many depths, divers and surface lines far away from the boat.
The captain's message gets lost in the shuffle of what he skillfully
goes thru to put a successful trip together.
It's kinda like the TV producer/host and host
are on a lark, enjoying a free fishing trip. Then, show is
after thought, to throw the charter operator a bone with some free
publicity for his being featured in the show.
Complex choices face our sports fleets when it comes where to
spend your money (best bang for the buck) and what's
reel-necessity........and what's not?
In a response to several emails
concerning last week's theme of charters vs. the sport fisherman,
questions arose about underwater cameras, underwater speed/temp
units, along with other expensive optional gismos. Forego all
major expenditures until you've purchased the best sonar you can
possibly afford. A good marking, trustworthy sonar tells all,
cuz sonar is your underwater vision. If you can't see what's
there?....then you're fishing blind. Much like being
blindfolded, in the "pin tail on the donkey" game we all
played,...when we were kids.
Don't ask me what brand I
recommend, as there's many manufacturers putting out good
stuff. Do plan on spending 500 bucks and up for a first class
machine. You know what?.......it's the wisest money you'll
ever spend on your big water fish quest.
Sports fleet vs. the charters discussion wraps up today.
Many might think the grass is always greener and that's a constant
reel-fact we all contend with.
However, count your blessings if you're a
private boat fisherman. Your stress level is a lot lower, cuz you're
not hired to force to feed fish! Nor, will you have shoulder
the extreme high costs associated with having a 30 some foot
If you do own a boat in the 18 to under 25
foot range, time your outings to when the fish are there.
Like, southern Lake Michigan in late April and early May. A
few trips to Saginaw Bay, or Lake Erie for Walleye in June is hard
to beat. Then as July rolls around, concentrate efforts on the
central to more northern Lk. MI ports.
Always remember, it's the not amount
of rods in the water, it's how the rods are working,....you have in
the water. In 2003, I've seen a skimpy 5 rod spread blow away
my fellow Manistee charter skippers that were towing 10 or more
Why?...cuz their spread dictates
their direction and protecting 6 cores (maybe double cores too),
makes working structure in crowded conditions, an
impossibility! Also, in today's clearer waters, a large spread
can actually spook fish away.
Here's another thing that needs
mentioning; rough water is miserable no matter what size boat you're
on. So, a larger craft does not equate to more time on the
water, at least at a tolerable comfort level.