Perch-a-plenty in Cutarm Creek

Welcome to Week 2 of 'Shore Fishing the Parkland'. 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 the shore, and hopefully catch enough for a good summer fry.

While my kids have grown, I do recall that one challenge of fishing when they were young was to find someplace you could fish where they could be involved.

Understandably, children want to do what their parents are doing, That is how they learn.

And that extends to the fishing hole.

In most places, when it comes to fishing from shore you have to be able to cast, and cast a fair ways out, to have a chance to pass a hook in front of a hungry fish. Children, younger ones in particular, have a hard time with that. If they can get the hook a few feet out so that it plops in the water they are rightfully proud, but the likelihood of catching a fish is remote.

If they aren't catching they become bored, and that's when they can start wanting to go home, long before fishing moms and dads are ready.

Well Cutarm Creek might just be the answer.

The creek is one of those surprising secrets out there, given just how easy it is to get to it, and how easy the fishing is.

From Yorkton you head east on Highway 16, get to Churchbridge and head south to Esterhazy. You will cross the Cutarm Creek, a deep little valley where you can see the creek meandering well below the road grid. Climb the other side and hang a left.

It's just down a hill and you are there.

Mosaic has actually set up a small area for visitors with all-weather picnic tables and refuse barrels. The only real amenity missing for the fisherman is an outhouse.

That small inconvenience notwithstanding, the area is great for shore fishing.

Cutarm Creek seems to be half water and half perch fish.

Twice this spring I have headed there, once with my son and once with a friend, and over a few hours caught 50-60 perch. Now admittedly most were smaller than I care to keep, but we still managed to put about one out of three into the pail to take home.

As a fisherman I enjoy the tug at the end of the line, and if I have to toss a small perch back to grow a bit, I don't mind that at all.

But back to children. The perch here seems to hang pretty close to shore, so a short cast can still get some action, and being little perch a youngster can handle the reel-in.

It doesn't have to be a big perch to make a youngster smile if they land it on their own.

There is some additional good news for adults too.

If you have a small boat, even a canoe, there is a launch area, with the waterway only open to electric motors.

And as dusk arrives, the walleye are known to come out. I caught a couple late into my first trip this spring.

In talking to local fishermen I learned that the river supports a native population of perch - and lots of them as mentioned - with the walleye being stocked.

This is my first year at the creek, but it won't be my last. It's relaxed, easily accessed shore fishing, and I'd guess you will rarely get completely skunked given the hungry nature of perch.

If you do, no matter. The valley area is beautiful. Geese honk over head, ducks take off and land nearby. One night a deer crossed the nearby road, and another night I followed a large garter snake across the gravel area to the grass. Later a beaver, surprised to find someone fishing, rolled and slapped the water with its tail close enough that I nearly got splashed. Sights like that would make up for a slow day of fishing.

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