Monday, April 27, 2015

A Bad Day Fishing is Better Than a Good Day a Work...SAYS WHO?

So the weather was fine, the ice was off most of the lakes and I wanted to go fishing. I had to play in the morning and I had to/honoured to/get to teach a casting seminar at Cabela's till 3pm. So my options were a little short. Stocked trout is the only option this time of year so I decided to hit a place called Reynolds Ponds. The ponds are a series of large reclaimed gravel/limestone pits that have been filled in by the aquifer. Being spring feed and deep they winter most of their fish but they are also stocked yearly. There  is great shore access and back casting room. The ponds are both small enough to  let you cover a lot of water from shore they are also big enough to accommodate, canoes, kayaks, float tubes, pontoons, and row boats. It is well back of the highway, so quite secluded.

Visually it is only a few docks, benches and manicured landscaping away from the facilities at any high priced private fly fishing facility that I have been at or read about in North America or Europe

Sounds like heaven?
But instead of looking like this... looks like this

Not even close. 
I could have spent the day shooting pics of  piles of crap people could manage to bring there but not manage to bring out. Most of it with bullet holes in it.

Now it is not a private for fee fishing area so I would be out of my mind to expect it to be anything like one, but with a little effort this resource just out side of the city could be a real gem for locals and visitors.

The local fly fishing association has spent a decent amount of time and public money to develop a province wide trout map and, more relevantly, spent good money  on  a few failed attempts to have fish in a pond in Birds Hill Provincial park.

Birds Hill 34 minutes from Winnipeg,  Reynolds Ponds are 45 minutes.

On this particular day I also had the misfortune of having squatter/campers on the side one of the ponds. They had been there a while and, as of 7pm Sunday night, show no signs of leaving.

They played their music loud making relaxing a challenge and dropped the f bomb with the full force of their lungs and frequently enough that the lone family with kids left.

I did manage a fish. It happen while the squatters where playing Bryan Adam's "Summer of 69"

and On top of that I had two different dogs off leash bark growl charge me one from the squatters and one from other people with no sense about public spaces
A bad day fishing is better than a good day at work?? I wish I was at work

Now some carefully shot/cropped photos of this place and you get what I may be imagining for the place.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Bower and William Lake

I have grouped these two lakes together as they are somewhat similar

Both lakes are located in the Turtle Mountain area of Manitoba, 1½ hours south of Brandon making them 3½ away from Winnipeg.

Bower is the bigger lake, stocked with rainbow trout. The water is prone to turbidity due to the type of lake, the wind and the power boats. There is little in the way of shore access so you would need a water craft of some sort.
There is good camping nearby with everything from rough to full service.

William is a little  east of William. The 2 species of note are Brown Trout and Small Mouth bass. The browns are stocked and bass where put in to control the perch. There is a gas motor ban and a limit on taking bass.
Great camping right on the lake but they are all un-serviced

Tokaryk and Patterson Lakes

I have lumped these two lakes together as they are similar in topography and species

Both have stocked Rainbows and Browns
Both are pot hole lakes with not much in the way of structure
Both are just east of the town of Rossburn making them 3½ hours away from Winnipeg by car
Patterson has a bait and gas motor ban while Tokaryk only has a ban on live minnows.

Because of the nature of the fish stocked (most notably the rainbow steelhead crosses) these fish grow big. You can easily catch a 20" rainbow and the browns can get as big as well.
Not much in the way of shore access so you need a water craft of some sort.

There is a campsite of sorts on Patterson but there is not much in the area for non fishing members of your family if you are planning to base a vacation around these lakes or this area of the world. I think you'd be better off camping in near by Riding Mountain National Park leaving the family with some things to do while you go fishing.