Welcome to Week LXXIII of 'Fishing Parkland Shorelines'. Like most of us I am a novice fisherman, loving to fish, but far from an expert. In the following weeks I'll attempt to give those anglers who love to fish but just don't have access to a boat, a look at some of the options in the Yorkton area where you can fish from shore, and hopefully catch some fish.
So it has been a while since I have dabbled in homebuilding lures.
But the other night, after a particularly long Monday of writing, I was lying in bed trying to unwind enough to sleep when I had an epiphany regarding a lure idea.
This is one of those which came together easy enough, but of course the proof of success will come when I get a chance to chuck them out into some pike infested waters one of these days.
If they don't work my investment for six hooks will be about $12 and some relaxing time at a card table being somewhat creative.
My first stop for this project was the electrical aisle in the hardware store, where I ferreted out plastic wire connectors. I bought three different sizes, each in a different colour.
Next I moved to the fishing equipment aisle, finding a few treble hooks in sizes somewhat approximate to the connectors.
And finally I grabbed a few old fashioned slip weights, the ones that have the rubber strip inside for attaching the weight to the line.
Once at the work bench, equipment included an electric hand drill and a hot glue gun, plus a few bottles of nail polish. Guys you might want to drop by a dollar store and buy the polish rather than 'borrowing' from the better half's stash. It might save a night in the dog house, and it is getting cooler at night these days.
Once you have everything in place, I went about fashioning a simple lure.
Use the drill to make a hole on the enclosed end of the connector. You want the hole large enough to pass the eye of the treble hook you will use through it.
Next, pull the rubber out of a weight. Select a weight small enough to fit into the connector.
With the rubber removed the weight can be placed on the shaft of the treble hook.
Once the weight is in place, you can push the treble hook into the connector so that the eye passes through the hole that you drilled.
If things are a bit tight, you can easily file a bit off the lure, or even trim off a bit from one end just to get everything fitting neatly.
Next fill the hole around the eye with hot glue and then around the weight closest to the hooks.
Now you can be creative with the polish.
The yellow connector can be made in the style of classic five of diamond designs with red or black stripes.
The red, with some white stripes can mimic the basic idea of the red and white design.
Of course you can go as crazy as you want here in creating 'a look' to attract fish.
As an alternative design element a few strands of wool, or a feather can be worked into the piece along side the weight before hot gluing.
For a finishing touch, a nice spray with a sealer should help preserve the polish.
I will say with the nice weight of these lures they are going to cast superbly, and that's the first step to being useful.
And now back to the kitchen.
I noticed Joe Beever's is holding a contest where people can submit poutine recipes, which got me to thinking.
For this one I cheated a bit, buying some boneless fish at the store. There are filleting techniques which can be used that remove all the bones from local fish, but I'm not proficient in that regard.
I made, all right the better half made, some homemade fries, always better than anything you buy in a bag.
I fried up the fillets simply dredged in flour, lemon pepper, seasoning salt and once in the fry pan dowsed with some hot sauce.
A quick beef-base gravy, yes from a packet, and a bag of cheese curds round out the recipe.
Take the home fries and lay in a flat bowl, add the curds and gravy, then lay the fillet on top.
And now for a special touch. Take some fresh raspberries, frozen will work too, and toss them in a blender. Add about half as much ketchup as you have berries, add a few shakes of cinnamon and ginger, and a shake or two of the hot sauce. Blend well.
Spoon some of the raspberry ketchup onto the fish, and serve.
So it's an overcast Sunday and we decide to make a quick run to Whitesand Regional Park where the fish were said to be biting.
Suffice it to say that the key word in that sentence is "were", because on our little excursion the fish stayed well away, not so much as offering a 'for-sure-nibble'.
The sun breaking through the cloud did make a picturesque fall scene with the trees on the far side of the water resplendent in autumn colours, so it wasn't a total loss, but fishing wise it was not a trip to fill this space with its tale.
So how about a look at some professional made lures which fisherman should take a close look at adding to their arsenal.
Deadly Dick Lures, based in Campbell River, B.C. has been around for more than half a century. Such longevity speaks to a range which has to catch fish or fishermen would have abandoned the lines decades ago.
"Deadly Dick lures have been catching fish since 1949," explained Dave Ross via an email interview. Dave and his wife Donna own the company.
The company website notes, "the quality materials and careful workmanship used in their production, combined with their proven ability to catch fish have made them indispensable in both fresh water and salt water.
"Deadly Dick lures are made of solid brass, then nickel plated, giving them a shiny, bright finish. With nickel swivel, stainless steel split rings and 'seaguard' protected Eagleclaw hooks, our lures are almost indestructible. Single hooks and single bucktail hooks are optional."
The brass material gives these lures weight in a slim design. Their standard casting lure is like a little bullet leaving the rod. Ounce for ounce I'd say it outcasts any other lure in my tackle box.
I'll add too that even the larger lure range, the long casting-jigging lures, rocket away from the rod, but on the retrieve they do not create a lot of drag, which is easier on your reel than will be the case with many heavier lures which retrieve heavy. That can be pressure on the gears in a reel every cast and the Deadly Dicks don't put that strain on a reel.
That said the heavier lures on a slower retrieve will get to the bottom on days fishing are lounging there.
"Some of the larger standard lures are great in lakes and streams for larger trout because the brass core gives you weight to cast far and get down deep," said Dave. "In some of the lakes with Kokanee spawning near creek mouths the #3 Long has produced 8-12lb Rainbows that are in these areas feeding on the land locked salmon. The #4 Long is great for salmon and bottom fish off the west coast and also for the rapidly growing Tuna fishery farther off shore. 80 percent of our business goes to the USA eastern seaboard."
So what species are Deadly Dicks best for?
"We don't focus on any particular species because we know there is a size, shape and colour for almost all of them," said Dave.
Checking out the company colour chart you find some 32 different options.
What works best of course will be a combination of day, species and conditions.
"Popularity is another story depending on region," said Dave.
"Across Canada the standard lures are used mostly in freshwater for trout, Kokanee, Walleye and a variety of pan fish."
Dave added the lures still work when the calender turns to winter too, something I can understand based on how easily they will plumb the depths, and the silvered finish that should catch attention.
"The 1/16oz. to 1/2oz are really hot for ice fishing and anglers should give the #3/4 Long a chance, I know they are catching lunker Walleye for those who use them," he said.
"… The #3/4 Long to #4 Long are super effective for Striped Bass, Bluefish and False Albacore. The #2 and #3 Long are the biggest sellers for casting and retrieving and for that same style of fishing they are becoming increasingly popular in Mexico. Some anglers from other parts of the world are taking advantage of our online store atwww.deadlydicklures.com. For instance the 1/2oz standard lure and the #3/4 Long are hot for Sea Trout in Ireland."
Certainly the variation in design and colour afforded by Deadly Dick Lures is one which fisherman can take advantage of with some experimentation.
That they have an ice fishing application is of course a bonus in our neck of the woods.
Dave noted the company is always developing new ideas too.
"As far as new products we just started producing a #5 Long for those anglers who wanted more weight," he said. "This lure weighs in at 5-oz. and is outfitted with a 7/0 Gamakatsu siwash hook."
That will be a true heavy weight lure to go after some really big pike with.
Overall Deadly Dick Lures are a handy addition to the lure choices in the tackle box.
Check out the range at www.deadlydicklures.com