Up with the sun for another day of angling. Today we split up the boats a bit. My father goes with Mike and Jill fishes with Sparky, in hopes of getting them into spots where they’ll land some walleye. We on the other hand are doing fine on our own and set off to explore new areas. Before we shove off, Sparky asks us if we’ve seen his minnow bucket. We tell him we saw it last night dangling in the water at the stern of his boat. “Well it’s not there now”, states Sparky. Interestingly enough the line that was attached to the bucket is still there. Paul thinks that because Sparky can’t tie a proper knot to save his life, it just worked itself “free” and floated off. We help him scower the area. No buckets adrift. I climb in his boat and inspect the line, suspecting nefarious activity. The line, although still tied to the stern, is much shorter and does not fully extend into and onto the water. The knot tied to the boat is nothing similar to Sparky’s “double square” knots. A smile curls around the corners of my mouth, I begin to chuckle. It appears that retribution has been swift and in this case harsh. Sparky’s ability to fish, at least with live bait has been halted. It appears to be sabatoge, I tell Sparky. You have been paid back for last night’s prank in full it seems. (Which is a relief, as we were dreading the next coming days) Sparky is indignant, and can’t possibly figure out how they (cabin 3) knew it was him that created the breach in their mosquito barrier. Really? Mr. Prankster? Really? We leave Sparky in a quandry as he sets off to inquire from our host as to whether he has a “spare” minnow bucket and whether he knows the wherabouts of his. Later in the day we are told that Sparky’s bucket was found clear across the lake, when our host went to dump last night’s collection of fish guts. Interesting. We try an area where a swampy river feeds into the lake. Within less than a minute, I announce, Fish On, to which Paul proclaims, “me too”. We both reel with vigor. Who’s fish will be bigger? Will it be Walleye or Pike? As our fish breaks the surface, we discover that our fish is just that, OUR fish, as in singular.
In this vast and seemingly chock full O’ fish lake, that is Oba, we have both managed to land the same fish, a pike. WTF? Sure enough, that little glutton chomped on my lure and then bit on Paul’s. Pike, we hate pike. We are greated by his Joker-esque grin and blank stare. We net the bastard, which triggers a pike’s signature version of a crocodile death roll resulitng a two line entanglement. These guys are overachievers when it comes to being slimmy, and their teeth are viciously sharp and plentiful. Little did we know that this would be the fish dejour of the day. We could not help but catch pike, even in the areas known for walleye. Pike after Pike, after Pike. Maybe this is where the term ‘Pike’n it’ stems from. What was worse, was the fact that they were all relatively small, not a monster amoung them. It’s as if the pike shoved the walleye out of the way and said, “move on, nothing to see”, and then promptly chomped on our lures. We went through most of our arsenal and at days end returned dejected with just one 14″ walleye that we caught near Buzz Island and that we almost threw back in. Luckily the others faired better than us. Sparky and Jill slayed it, and were in by noon. Mike and my father faired well, but not as good as Sparky and Jill. No worries. That’s fish’n they say. Sometimes it’s hot and mostly it’s not. But it sure beats working.