Good eveing everyone!
As some of you may have gathered, I spent the previous fortnight in Canada to go to a friend's wedding, and he was kind enough to organise a week of what the Canadians call "cottaging" for us all in lieu of a honeymoon. What this means is simply spending a week in a house by a lake, in this case Sandy Lake near Buckhorn, Ontario, where the main mode of transport is the canoe. What this means is that at the slightest opportunity, one can step out of the house onto a jetty, hop into the canoe and go off in pursuit of giant muskellunge, largemouth bass, weird massive carp and bluegills. To someone who normally needs to travel a few hours on public transport to find any form of real nature, this is tantamount to absolute freedom. Obviously, when Young Pine Marten permitted it, but luckily, he tends to fall asleep an hour or two before the sun goes down, and the mosquitos appear, at this time of year.
This was also an opportunity for the extended PM family to meet up and spend some time together, and for the occasion, Dr PM (of muntjac skeleton fame) has asked me to re-teach him how to fish, and to bring over my very old Mitchell 204 reel that I had found in our grandmother's cola cellar before they demolished her house and had refurbished. So after equipping him with rods and such in Bass Pro, setting up his gear, and a couple of experimental casts, Dr PM proceeded to use his beginner's luck joker and hook the first of many small bass of the week in the sunset. In the photo below, you can see the old reel, the poor little bass (returned quickly), and maybe gli,pse my brother's first fish grin since about 1994.
Before going to sleep, I set my collapsible crab pots in in the hope of catching some crayfish for breakfast. That didn't quite happen immediately, Sandy Lake didn't seem to be exactly teeming with them, but this young bass did oblige in one trap, whilst in the other, we did have an ingredient of what I dubbed Canadian Surf'n'Turf. I caught a few more that I tried to keep overnight but they were eaten by a racoon.
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Finally, what I really wanted to achieve was to catach a fish as big as Young Pine Marten, as this is only going to become harder with time. Unfortunately, this lake didn't actually hold any giant muskellunge, or even any standard siyed pike. And so, we had to make do with one of the only two edible-sized bass that anyone landed that week. Nevertheless, I think that YPM will be suitably embarrassed by this picture on years to come, especially as I'm wearing my Buckhorn Ontaria moose teeshirt.
And yet, later in the week, when unsupervised, we caught him getting into the spirit of things, so perhaps there's hope yet...