Montreal fishing spots

Montreal fishing spots

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Monday, December 27, 2021

Mixed bag of bass and jumbo perch to end 2021

With my son Ari visiting home for the first time in a month or so, we planned our last outing of the year together for boxing day 2021. For this ice fishing trip, we headed out of town to a small lake to fish for a mix of largemouth and smallmouth bass, as well as possibly some perch.

Largemouth bass in this particular lake were illegally introduced at some point in time, as they are not native to that region. What typically happens in these types of lakes, is that they out compete the smallmouth bass, and end up decimating their numbers, to the point where they take over the entire lake's bass population. With very strong numbers due to almost no fishing pressure, the bass in this lake have stunted growth, to where it's common to have fish in the 12 inch range being mature enough to spawn.

As such, if I'm able to access the lake on ice, I'll make it a point to keep my legal bag limits of largemouth bass there, hoping to cull some out to make a bit more room for the quickly diminishing smallmouth bass.

As for the perch in this lake, the vast majority of them are extremely infested with worms, so for the most part, they get released, unless I manage to catch some clean ones. The worms tend to accumulate in the mouth, throat, gills, tail, and fins, so it's easy enough to spot infested fish.

Ari and I got on the lake by mid morning, and proceeded to trek to the lake's basin, which hits about 35-40 feet. The surrounding area varies from 20 to 30 feet, which is where I figured we'd find our bass. Starting at 20 feet or so, we drilled 10 holes at a time, and fished them fast and hard, looking for the most aggressive fish in the lake. 

Not much luck in the first hour or so, until we hit a depth of 26 feet. My first hole at that depth had 3 aggressive fish in it, which rushed my Yo Zuri Rattle bait on the first drop. Within minutes, I managed to catch them all, 2 largemouth bass and 1 good perch.

Fishing slightly deeper, Ari caught a mixed bag of small largemouth bass, and eventually the first smallmouth bass of the day.

I followed up with one as well.

All smallmouth bass get released.

The big surprise was the number of jumbo perch Ari manages to land. Roughly 25 perch in the 9 to 12 inch range, but unfortunately for us, only 4 of them clean / worm free enough for us to keep.

The W3 Rapala jigging rap Ari used was by far the best producing lure of the day, and he eventually ended up landing the outings biggest bass at 14-15 inches.

At day's end, after drilling and fishing 100 holes, we finally managed our 2021 ice pic, this time with a mixed bag of bass and perch.

A few day later, I hit another lake in a different region hoping to land a big bass or two, or perhaps some jumbo white perch. Action was very slow, only had one decent drag taking fish on the line for a few seconds before it got off before I had a chance to see it.

Late in the day, I got another good hit, this time I managed to land it. Turned out to be both my biggest perch of 2021, as well as my last catch of the year.

Wishing everyone another great year with lots of good catches for 2020. Tight lines!


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