10/16/14 Walleye Report – Dad’s Turn

17 10 2014

Late last year my father was diagnosed with prostate cancer.  At first the oncologists had it under control but around the beginning of February he developed a couple of blood clots and things started going south from there.  The chemo and radiation treatments were taking a toll on him.  His legs started to swell up, he was losing weight and the treatments were zapping his strength.  May was a particularly bad month and I was beginning to wonder if my last fishing trip with him was going to be a waste of a salmon trip out of Harrisville last September.   He was staying with me for the whole month so he could go to the Ann Arbor VA for his daily treatments and I felt guilty going fishing.  It just didn’t seem right me being out there when he was back at my house and so miserable.  I had people asking me to tag along on my boat and I really didn’t want to take anyone.  That extra spot in my boat is reserved for my Dad and I didn’t want anyone else catching fish from it.  Fortunately, thanks to the oncologists at the VA in Ann Arbor, a little luck and a lot of prayers he turned around and started getting better.  The cancer is still there but it is in regression.  This summer was spent getting his weight and strength back and now he and I can go walleye fishing once again.  Of course now that he has the strength to go fishing I don’t have a boat.  This is where my friend Richard saved the day.  He offered to take my Dad and I out the next time he was down.  Well luck was on our side and the rain passed so even though Richard’s face was half numb from an afternoon dentist appointment he picked us up and we were on our way.

We started a little late, around 7:30 pm, and headed to the same spot I caught all my fish last Friday.  Since Richard’s new boat is a side console he offered to just drive while my Dad and I sat in the back and fished.  I got my Dad set up and went about getting my lures in the water.  While I was doing that my Dad pulled in his first walleye for 2014.  Mission accomplished.  All I wanted for him was to get out and at least catch one fish.  I was hoping that this early success would mean more fish but it turns out we would only get 1 more for the night.  That’s ok though.  This trip was about getting him out on the water more than anything else.  It was a beautiful night out, very few clouds, no wind, no bugs, not many weeds just not many fish.  At least we got to go and it looks like we will be going again.

As I said before it was a perfect night out.  Weeds were minimal and the water is still clear.  Surface temps were back up to between 57 and 58 degrees.  It needs to get down to the 50″s to get some of the bigger fish on the move.  My Dad caught his fish on a #9 Bleeding Olive Rapala and I caught mine on a #11 Bleeding Chartreuse Rapala.  Both of them were in the 18 inch range.  I didn’t feel like cleaning 2 fish so when Richard dropped us off I told him to keep the fish.  He was nice enough to drive us around for a few hours and I thought it was the least I can do.

Now with some more prayers maybe my Dad and I can return to tearing up the walleye population next Spring.