Personal Best! – Shallow Water Walleye on the BoQ

The bay of Quinte has always been an intimidating body of water to fish for me. The stories of giant walleye are pretty easy to find on the Bay, however I have never been able to crack the big fish code here. That all changed today.

This morning’s dawn found me on the road travelling to Deseronto to meet up with my Dad and Brother.  After numerous attempts to get out for a fish together we were finally able to make it happen which was a great feeling in its own right.

The morning was clear and cool with a slight ripple on the water and temperatures were hovering around 12 degrees.  Not perfect walleye conditions, but as my Dads says, “its nice just to get out”.  Regardless of the optimism he always has when fishing, I wasn’t expecting a banner day with the walleye as the temperatures were supposed to climb to the mid 20′s and the sun was supposed to be in full force in a clear sky.  Not to mention little to no predicted winds. Boy was I wrong.

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Fishing started slow with only a few white bass and perch caught, albeit jumbo in size.  My thought today was to run and gun the whole stretch of Long Reach until we found some active walleye.  This took us past hogs back and the entrance to hay bay.   We passed over what seem like endless schools of pan fish until we were nearly to at the end of the reach.  It was at this point I kinda gave up on the walleye and started pitching bass along the shoreline, but still maintained a steady pace for my Dad and Brother’s troll line.

The next thing I know, my dad has a hit and his rod is bent over the boat.

“Drum” I say.

This is my typical response for big hit and run situations on the BoQ.  But as soon as I saw the flash of gold I knew this this was not the case.  Sure enough My dad was hooked into a decent 4lb walleye and was having a blast fighting his quarry.

That’s when I threw everything I knew about walleye fishing right out the window.

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Fish were caught in relatively shallow water on spinner baits.  The water seemed pretty warm and was murky with lots of dispersed algae.  Again, not what I expected considering my idea of ideal walleye habit includes 20+ FOW and crystal clear waters.

I readjusted our troll line and promptly dropped a spinner bait in to test this new found success to ensure it wasn’t a fluke.

5 minutes later, the fluke test was passed and I was holding my new personal best walleye.

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Weighing in at close to 9lbs, this beast toppled my previous 4lb record caught on lake Nippissing.  This fish gave me one of the biggest rushes of my life.  We were so excited when this fish came into view we were lucky to land it amongst the shaky hands, thumping heart beats and profanities.

One more decent eye was caught following a location adjustment.

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In summary, this fish gave me a new found appreciation for the walleye species in general and a peak at a slick new way of targeting giant gold in the BoQ.

My advice, don’t get to attached to patterns of fishing.  Sometimes it takes a little “outside the box” thinking to get the job done right.

Cheers from the Wild

Albert