It was a great start to the long Anticipated, Open water season, on The Bay Of Quinte this past weekend. Every year thousands of anglers migrate to the Bay Of Quinte to fish the opening walleye season. Kiwanis hosts the biggest walleye derby of the year this weekend every year. Many anglers come in the hopes of catching that trophy walleye that the bay is so famous for. Every year many Anglers struggle to even catch a fish let alone a trophy.
over the years that I have been fishing on the bay, I have come to realize that The Bay Is definitely a trophy fishery, and it lives up to the name every year. Trophy fish are trophies for one reason, because they are dam near impossible to catch.
We were fortunate enough to be able to land a few fish this weekend, most in the 2 to 5 LBS range, and our 3 biggest were 6,7 and last but not least our largest walleye of the derby was just shy of 8LBS, not too shabby, for a regular day of fishing, but not good enough to get us onto the leader board of the http://www.kiwaniswalleyeworld.com/ Derby
I want to thank my good friends Adam Mamak/ Wooly Mamak, Richard Dunlop (SeaFour Lures) for participating and fishing with me this year, as well as my sponsors, #fishbumoutfitters (http://fishbumoutfitters.com/) , #SeaFourLures ( http://www.seafourlures.com/ ), and Liquid Mayhem ( http://liquidmayhem.ca/ ), for continuing to make exceptional products and helping us succeed in landing fish every time I’m on the water.
I hope every one had a great weekend during the opening of what will sure to be a great year on the water, and please remember to like and share this post and come back often to see updates on whats happening with Sea’s The Day fishing Charters.
We are now open for the Season and have some openings to fill so give me a call to book your next walleye adventure.
I had a great time in Wellington Ontario today lending a hand and volunteering my time. Along with several other volunteers that showed up I wanted to thank Mr AL Van Dusen, a local fisherman that has dedicated his time to heading up many projects like this over the years in the hopes to create a more sustainable fishery in Lake Ontario.
Also thank you to all the volunteers over the years that help out with projects like this one in Wellington that help to make the fishery we are blessed with on Lake O’.
Just over 1 month to go before Thousands of anglers hit the open waters of The Bay Of Quinte for the famous walleye derby we have here every year, The Kiwanis Walleye World (live release) fishing derby. to find out more on the derby click the link. ( http://www.kiwaniswalleyeworld.com/ )
Anyway every year this is my favorite event to enter. Its open to the public, there are so many prizes from boat, motor, and trailer prizes to winning tickets, or even just a hat. You can even win prizes if you don’t fish the derby. I wanted to give a bit of insight into what I do in preparation for the coming open water season. I have out board motors and always have, so that is where my experience lies when it comes to the preventative maintenance. First and foremost if you don’t know what your doing, it’s best to take your boat to a boat mechanic for any work done to it.
1st. When the good spring weather begins. I go over my boat to see how it has wintered, Being that I live in Canada and winter can get extremely cold. I check for weather cracks in the hull and the motors top to bottom, pay special & close attention to the lower end units of your outboards even the slightest hairline crack in your prop can cause major problems and may become costly to repair if not addressed immediately.
2nd, The batteries are a major concern for me, it would be better to take them out of your boat and stored properly over the winter, however lets face it even if you take the up most care of them that doesn’t mean they are ready to perform at the top level they should after a long winters nap. If you do not know how to properly check if your batteries are in top working order then take it to your boat mechanic to get them inspected thoroughly. If there is any Question about their functionality, have them replaced. To clean your batteries use a recommended product by your Mechanic, I use WD-40, clean the terminals using a wire brush or terminal cleaner, and make sure to coat the terminal posts with some sort of grease either a silicone compound or maybe an easier method which you may have in your house already Petroleum Jelly, either works fine, but we expose our boat batteries to moisture every day on the water, so it will help protect them from rusting on you. make absolutely sure to test the charge of your battery. they should charge to 13.2 V or more, leave it for 24 hours then come check it to make sure they hold that charge. If you are loosing a charge then perhaps its time to have them replaced.
3rd. Change your fluids, although you should have changed all your fluids at the end of the season before winter it is a good idea and doesn’t hurt to change your lower end oil again or at least check it if you did change it at the end of last season. oil and fuel filters should be changed out at the beginning of the year as well as your plugs. Check the gas to make sure no water or condensation built up in the tank. If it did pump it out before trying to start the motors.
4th. This item seems to be missed so often but it is maybe as important as your boat plug and that is you Bilge pump. before you even leave the house in the spring make sure you test all of your electronics, examples would be, your gauges, lights, and horn, all important, but maybe the most overlooked is the bilge pump. this item is a major emergency tool that will save your boat from sinking on the water if something goes very wrong. It gets a lot of use during the season and on every trip, so make sure it is running smoothly. Also make sure the bottom of your boat is clear of debris, when water gets in, it is amazing what will find its way to the bilge pump clogging it and rendering the pump useless just when you need it most. On top of checking to make sure it works maybe have a spare on the boat just in case.
5th. Check all your Safety equipment, although this is a given it is a good idea to make sure you have all the proper safety gear for your boat and it is back on board, and that none of the equipment has expired. It would be a shame to get everything in order just to have your trip ruined because your flares were out of date, or your flashlights batteries died, or your charts were not updated, etc. each category or class of vessel has a separate set of rules for the safety equipment you are to have on board, so make sure you have the right safety gear for your boat.
6th. Testing your boat. It is a great idea to get your boat in the water before opening weekend or before you go away for a boating weekend with your buddies and give the boat a good run up a lake. Let the boat soak for a bit. then open up any port holes and see if any water got in from anywhere. This gives you time to fix any problems before you go away with all your buddies only to be found stuck on land because you didn’t check out the boat before you left. This is also where you will find out how your impellers are working and if they need any attention or not, of course you may have done that at home with the garden hose but if not this is where you’ll find out LOL.
7. Boat ramp etiquette. Ok this is not about boat maintenance but I think is a topic that still needs to be addressed. I have seen it so many times at the launch especially in the early spring when a person may not have a lot of experience launching a boat or even been at a launch ever in his or her life, this is where you will find all the newbies. but what disgusts me is the attitude everyone else in line waiting to put their boats in, have. It eould be nice if everyone had some patience for these people. We have all been in this persons shoes before, we were not born to be able to back up trailers or automatically know what to do when launching a boat so please be patient with these people and better yet, offer assistance, show them what to do. help the situation, stop being part of the problem, I can assure you it is not helpful to yell at someone taking a bit longer and stressing them out even more than they already are. put yourself in their shoes believe me when I say, “you have been there at some point in your life before”. ways to avoid stresses of boat ramp rage is to get to the ramp extra early, especially during the opening of any fishing season.
8th. On the water . This is my favorite. I love the Kiwanis Walleye derby every year, what I get very annoyed with however is the amount of people that have a serious lack of respect for others on the water during this event. Now there are literally thousands of boats throughout the Bay of Quinte on the water for opening weekend, however many people seem to forget who has the right of way on the water in many circumstances, so all I am going to say about this is I would recommend everyone refresh yourself about the rules of the water prior to launching your boat, and not just this year, but every year. It does not take long and you can do it on line. here is just one link, there are several. http://www.boaterexam.com/canada/education/c6-nauticalrules-en.aspx
I hope this was useful for you, and hope everyone has a safe time boating in 2016.
Being from the heart of the city of Toronto Ontario, many would find it odd that I have spent many seasons as a commercial fisherman. A few people have asked me over the past few months let alone years, what it’s like and how to go about getting a job on a commercial fishing vessels in different Area’s of Canada when your not a local.
Over the years I have had the pleasure of experiencing the commercial fishing industry in many areas first hand. I have fished in Canada on The Bay Of Fundy (Advocate Harbour) in (2002), out of Mabou Harbour Cape Breton Nova Scotia last Spring (in 2015), and over seas in Aberdeen Scotland U.K. ( in 1997-1998) as well. Every time I have fished somewhere it has been a very different situation or circumstance.
BOATS I HAVE FISHED ON OVER THE YEARS.
boy gordon 02 – Copy – Copy Plaice /crab/ skate
Aberdeen harbour Scotland
Lobster season 2015
Mabou Harbour Cape Breton N.S.
Advocate Harbour N.S This was not this boat, but the old boat I was on is no longer there.
lobster boat i fished on when our boat was broke down
Mabou Harbour N.S. 2015
No job is alike, and every species is fished differently. I suggest if you are seriously considering giving this type of work a try, then you do your homework to find out exactly what type of species you’d like to fish for before just jumping into the deep end. Last Spring, although I have been on several types of boats and fished many species, I found myself fishing for 1 day on a snow crab boat and let me tell ya, I thought I was a hard core fisherman, but that 1 day on a crab boat just about killed me LOL.
This was the boat for 1 day for snow crab & I did 2 days lobster on this vessel as well while the boat I was on had some mechanical problems and was getting repaired.
Mabou Harbour 2015
Before I get into the next 10 questions you should ask yourself Why am I going to try working on a commercial fishing boat? If the answer is , because I have watched every episode of Deadliest Catch over the past 11 years and you want to go earn a tonne of cash in a short period of time, Then you may as well stop reading any further. The reality is, there are a tonne of guys every year that make their way up the Dutch Harbour and places like that where the big boats are looking for work, but unfortunately when they get up there they realize there is slim to no chance to ever land a job like that. there are just too many experienced fisherman living in those areas and have already secured a spot on one of the many vessels long before this was even a thought in your head. Truth is in order to land one of those positions you may have to volunteer your time as a deck hand for free and or work in the less desirable jobs for years before you get the chance to become a greenhorn on one of those boats. However if your answer was, for an adventure, and a life experience then by all means continue reading (LOL).
when looking for a species of fish that you think you would like to try ask yourself these following questions.
Obviously, your google search engine will help you with this.
2. What shape am I in, and can I handle the work load?
If you Youtube the type of fishing you are researching you can see what type of physical demands are required. However, remember you will have to repeat these tasks over & over again, all day long, and Youtube will generally not give you an idea of the hardest parts of the job.
This information is easily found when researching the time of year from step 1.
You can find a job from home, or, from dockside. You can use your computer and go on Government job listing sites, craigslist, Kijiji, and any other sites you can think of that you can generally find work. Search by province and key words such as, fisherman, deck hand, corks-man,or second-man, and the type of fish you want to fish for. However, to be honest, many of the captains are old school. You may not find very much on line and still the best method is to be ready and willing to work dock side. Not being local you may need to work a little harder. Being dockside the week (or preferably 2) prior to the season, volunteering your time, loading traps, splicing ropes, and odd jobs, is a great way for captains to get comfortable enough to offer you a position or give you a reference to another captain in the fleet. do not over crowd a captain, if he looks uninterested in you then be prepared to hand him a business card with your information and picture on it so he can be reminded of who you were or pass it along to other captains that may be looking for deckhands.
Another great way, is to befriend the waitress at the local pub. She is often the local ‘fishermans therapist’, so if anyone knows the local fishermen, and who is hiring, its her (LOL). Leading up to the season many captains take lunch (in-between 11am and 3pm) at the pub as a break from this busy prep time. don’t be afraid to spend a bit and buy a round to break the ice with a few thirsty boat captains, it can go a long way, trust me LOL. Tip your waitress, she will remember you and every time you are in the pub you will get better service. for the entire duration of your working vacation.
Consider, gas mileage, train or air fair, food, and accommodation. Also, if driving, can you cover car repairs?. Even though we all tend to do things with great intent you may not be able to work as intended. If you can not find work, or cannot handle the physical demands, or discover you get sea sick, you will need to have enough money to come home before you even make a pay cheque.
If you are one of the lucky few to acquire a job prior to your departure, the captain may be a great resource for cost effective solutions. Otherwise, be prepared to be mobile because once you meet many friendly locals you may have an opportunity to find cheaper short term rental units that are not sourced online and a bit of a distance from the wharf. I have transported my own camper trailer as sites in local parks seem to be the best option. I have even parked my trailer at the wharf for a season at no cost to me. Even though my gas mileage heading there is higher. but I have even put my trailer right at the wharf that I was working out of so as to have $0.00 in accommodation fees. Be careful what time of year you leave with this option as a late thaw can limit availability to operational parks, (ie. power/heat) and leaving you a bit stranded LOL
yes I was a bit early last spring and we were 2 weeks delayed due to the ice. I had no power or running water during this time.
If you are taking a position where you are out to sea for days, weeks, or even months on end, do the math. It may be better to take a cheap motel for a day or two when on land then a monthly rental. If this is the option you choose you will only be traveling with a bag of clothes, pillow, and sleeping bag. You will have to budget for eating out when on shore.
Like any job you will most likely have a 2-3 week waiting period before seeing your initial pay. It is also important to keep in mind, if you are taking a position in the spring, jobs may be delayed due to a long winter and can add an additional couple of weeks to this time frame.
While you can find this information during your initial research, keep in mind, you do not want to financially depend on how long employment would be for the season. While your job may start late due to lingering winters it can also abruptly end due to early ice up.
Do not over estimate your abilities. You are going to work in harsh conditions, long hours, minimal days off, and grueling physical work. Start with a season which last weeks not months, with the ideas of possibly staying longer. Many captains will work the boat with back to back seasons with different species. They will probably never mention this until the end of one season, and then only if you were a great deck hand that they want back. If you are a valuable employee your captain or another in the fleet will know and possibly offer you further work.
The worst part about this is, it can happen at anytime, to anyone, and you have no choice but to, suck it up buttercup! No captain will spend thousands of dollars in fuel to bring you back to land. Taking Gravol works but only if taken prior to boarding. If you find out you get sea sick easily, your season is done. If it is happens randomly half way through the season, take medication for the next few working days before trying to go out without it. Sea sickness is the leading cause of most deckhands bowing out and walking out of the industry for good. I myself am lucky for the most part. I do not generally get seasick but I do remember back in Scotland a small period that I could not shake the sea sickness. It went on for 3 or 4 day’s straight and I can tell you I have never felt like I wanted to die like, I did then (LOL).
If everything comes together and all the above 10 tips come together without a hitch then you could be in for one of the best opportunities and or adventures of your life. If you think you are up for the adventure I can tell you its well worth it.
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Hand-tied Great Lakes trolling flies
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