Friday, February 12, 2010

The Slippery Trout

The Lake Trout (Salvelinus namaycush) lives in cold deep North American lakes Also known as Mackinaw, lake char, Touladi, and Grey Trout. This type of Trout grows very slowly, and is dependant on cold oxygen rich water. One place to find this type of fish is in Jackson Lake, Wyoming. I decided to take a trip to see for myself what catching a Lake Trout entailed. My wife and I hired a fishing guide at the Coulter Bay Marina, and set out for our adventure on the lake. Jackson Lake is a man made lake built in 1911. Some of the water from this lake is used to irrigate farmland in Idaho. It’s a good chance that the potatoes in your supermarket were raised on water from Jackson Lake. With the Grand Teton Mountains in the background this lake looks like something out of every anglers dream, and the lake is full of Cutthroat, Brown, Rainbow, and of course Lake Trout.

We started out trolling at a depth of about 47 feet using a Cannon Downrigger to keep us at an even depth. We were using some type of minnows the guide had brought with him, each about 2 inches long. After about 5 minutes my rod went down fast and hit the water. The force of the strike caused the line to release from the downrigger on it’s own. I put a great deal of tension on the rod, now bent almost in half, and watched as the line peeled off the reel as if I had hooked into a rocket headed straight for the bottom of the lake. After a brief fight the line went limp. I looked around in disbelief. The battle was over and I had lost. As I was lowering my bait back down to trolling depth I hooked up again right away, only this time I could tell it was a smaller fish. We ended up catching several more within about four hours.

My Grandfather once told me,” you might remember the fish you’ve caught, but you’ll never forget the ones you didn’t”. Boy was he right. We will be going back to Jackson Lake again, only this time it’s personal!

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