Sunday, August 28, 2011
The Coast Guard towing us towards shore was a happy, if unwelcome, sight!
the Brother Nature's motor unexpectedly revving up to high rpms as the boat slowed to a quick stop.
Motor going faster, boat going slower–something is amiss! Eventually, I learned a gear had given way or the propellor shaft had broken in the lower unit.
The immediate problem was we were drifting with the wind approximately 5 miles offshore of Ludington, MI.
I switched to channel 16 on the radio and hailed the US Coast Guard Station at Ludington. Once contact was made, we switched to channel 22 and I explained the situation. No immediate danger, no medical problems, just a no-go boat.
The Coast Guard attempted to call local firms with tow boats but none were available so they launched their fast response vessel and came to our aid. Thanks to GPS technology and marine radios, finding us was no problem and soon we were hooked up and underway.
We were safe, but our Ludington fishing trip became more an adventure and less a fishing trip than we’d hoped.
A new "bottom-end" will be on the Brother Nature’s outdrive early in the week so we’ll be back for fishing adventures by Labor Day weekend.
Friday, August 19, 2011
Friday, August 12, 2011
Most of the lakers–the boats which only operate on the Great Lakes, never venturing out to sea - are 600 to 800 feet long. Most of the "salties," as ocean-going vessels are called are much shorter. The beam of all these ships are constrained by the width of the locks at Sault Saint Marie (to move from Lake Huron to Lake Superior), the locks in the Welland Canal (to by-pass Niagara Falls and move from Lake Erie to Lake Ontario) or the locks at the St. Lawrence Seaway to move ships up the St. Lawrence River and into the lakes.
Here in Indiana with a major international port (the Port of Indiana) as well as several steel mills on the Lake Michigan shoreline, it’s a rare day when we don’t get to view one or more of these huge ships. Early in the spring and during the fall spawning run we often fish within spitting distance of the huge vessels. It’s all a part of the ambiance and vitality of Great Lakes fishing.
Thursday, August 4, 2011
There are 5 species of salmon and trout available to be caught at our end of Lake Michigan. We catch cohos and chinook salmon (the Indian names)–also known as silver and king salmon. There are steelhead trout, lake trout and brown trout. Interestingly, the steelhead is genetically similar to a rainbow trout–often caught in streams or stocked into small ponds. The brown trout is also widely stocked, but it originated in Europe and isn’t closely related to either a steelhead or lake trout. The lakers are actually in the char family, which includes arctic char and brook trout. Catching all 5 of Lake Michigan’s common species in one trip is called the Lake Michigan Grand Slam. It doesn’t happen very often.
KINGS, COHOS, STEELHEAD AND ONE LAKE TROUT WERE INCLUDED IN THIS MINI-SLAM
It's only happened once on my boat and even catching 4 of the 5 – a mini-slam – is a rare occurance, happening only once every couple of years. Here are the happy fishermen that did the deed on the Brother Nature for the first time this year!