Tuesday, November 8, 2016

No fish for dinner tonight :(


One of the many things we miss about our home in northeastern Wisconsin is the ability to hitch the boat trailer to the car and in 10 minutes be launching the boat on Lake Noquebay. It was like having our own personal fish market. That lake is a fish factory…as close to a sure bet to catch fish as any lake I’ve seen in 65 years of fishing all over Wisconsin. More days than not I’d catch maybe 6 to 8 largemouth bass and as many northern pike, all of them released. Noquebay has walleye also but in lessor numbers and they are difficult to catch on artificial lures, which is all I used. 

The equipment I used was a Pflueger Supreme casting reel paired with a Heddon Pal 6’ rod. Pflueger is still making reels but they look more like miniature racing cars than fishing reels. Heddon stopped making rods many years ago. The fish is a 37” musky hooked too badly to release.

When we wanted fish to eat we’d use our 5’ ultralight rods with ultralight reels spooled with Stren 4lb test line. Tie on a 1/16th ounce Beetle Spin in black for bluegill or yellow for perch and crappie and have your fish bag ready. The fish in this photo are about average size, though occasionally a real whopper bluegill, perch or crappie would turn up. The bigger bluegills were usually caught in the winter through the ice.

The fishing was enjoyable; we’d do it for hours but the eating was just as good. The flavor of those panfish fried with Maribel’s secret coating in a cast iron pan over a wood fire was absolutely delicious.

These days our fishing is limited to pier fishing in the Pacific Ocean in either Pimentel or Puerto Eten. The locals usually catch fish off these piers, though not many and usually on the small side. Maribel and I often get skunked…like this morning.

The equipment used for pier fishing is primitive but effective. Take a piece of wood and wrap 50’ of nylon line on it. Near the end of the line make two drop loops and attach snelled #4 hooks to the loops. At the very end of the line tie on a sinker…anything that weighs about 2 oz will do, including old spark plugs. For bait most people use conchas. I don’t know what the English word is. They look like miniature clams.

To cast the rig you hold the line about one foot above the second hook and twirl it above your head to get momentum and then let go, holding tight to the wood block. Then you try to detect the bite of those tiny bait stealers and hook them before they strip the bait. We’re usually not successful at that so spend much of our time re-baiting hooks. The under tow at these piers is fierce, and often even a 3 oz sinker, the maximum that is manageable on a hand line will not hold bottom, making it even more difficult to feel fish biting.

Anyway, we got skunked at Puerto Eten this morning, so we’re going to try our luck at Pimentel tomorrow. Even if we don’t catch anything, the blue sky and ocean and the sound of the waves crashing into the shore are reward enough.


2 comments:

  1. Always great to read your blog about life in this interesting Peruvian city. My wife is from Chiclayo and we get down that way every few years. Last July we had a chance to fish off of the same pier in Pimental. Though the fish we caught were small, they sure were more tasty than the panfish that we catch in Canada.

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    1. Hi Jeff...thanks for writing. We did go to Pimentel the next day and got skunked again, however two days later we were back at Puerto Eten and caught 6 nice-sized fish. Both piers were closed over the weekend because of high winds.
      Tom

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