pasha lake pike

Cabins, Work, and An Important Little Thing Called Fishing

All right, I’m back. The first thing I need to do is thank all of you for your patience and persistence in getting a hold of me. My absence from human contact has been for good reason and I sincerely appreciate everyone’s grace in getting your emails answered and phone calls returned.

As most of our long time guests are aware, we’ve been committed to substantial improvements of Pasha Lake Cabins since we took ownership 10 years ago. To date, we’ve built 2 new cabins, completely renovated and modernized a third cabin, and in the past 5 weeks, we’ve done it again. This spring, we embarked on a journey to completely update the older, worn out cabin #6. The below is a quick update on the what has been happening. 

I arrived at Pasha Lake Cabins in the tail end of April. The 801 was its usual gnarly, pothole-ridden self. When I turned down the driveway, I was greeted by snow banks higher than my truck and a path just wide enough to scrap the outside truck bumpers.

Of course, the lakes were still socked in with ice, but Barry (our handyman of 8 years) had already been hard at work clearing the work site for the impending construction. Once I finally laid eyes on site, I was as anxious as I was excited to get going on the new project.

After some tedious admin work on the building permit, we finally were able to break ground.  On the morning of the official kick off, we awoke to clearing skies and surprising warm weather. In fact, it was perfect working weather. After a quick prayer and asking of God’s blessing on the new project, Barry, new hire Jonathan, and I quickly went to work.

Fast forward to May 28. After a month-long marathon (and sprint I might add), we’ve achieved our goal of having the updated cabin #6 ready to serve guests. Although the interior is drop-dead gorgeous and will wow guests for many years to come, we will continue to work on the exterior as time allows throughout the season.

Some highlights of the new cabin #6 include a jaw dropping, up-close and personal view of Pasha Lake, a 6 foot sliding glass door (which will eventually walk out to a deck), all knotty pine interior, spacious living area, wheel chair accessible hallways and bathroom, oversized shower, concrete countertops, in-floor heat, a 3 season porch, and everything prewired for satellite TV and wireless access to the internet. Here are a couple pictures from the process. 

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With all that, it’s easy to see where my time and focus have been concentrated. It’s been a long road to get here, and we are excited to offer this renovated cabin to our guests. In fact, groups that are in camp this week are all raving about how they want to book it for the 2016 season.  

But aside from all this talk about cabins and work, there is this important little thing we call fishing. And I’m sure most of you are a bit anxious about current conditions. So let’s get to the important stuff.

Last week was brutally cold. In fact, early in the week we woke up to several inches of snow as the lakes were reluctantly letting their last chucks of ice return to liquid form. New Prostaffer, Scott Turner, who arrived on Sunday, was tasked with finding a hot bite somewhere in the bitterness that engulfed us at the time. In fact, Scott wrote up a great report on his adventures.

Also in camp last was new comer Justin Sterns from Michigan. In phone conversations, Justin and I talked at length about his deep desires to catch a “big pike.” But what he reminded me of when he got here is that he is a fly fisherman, not a traditional spinning guy. I was a little skeptical, to say the least, but wanted to see him succeed so I sent his dad, uncle, and him to some of my favorite hot spots for big pike and good numbers. Early in the week, the weather didn’t’t completely cooperate, but after some trial and error, they were able to discover a fly pattern that consistently produced.

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And yes, Justin did land his hog, a 37.5” 14 lb specimen of a local population! What I think is cool about his trip is he did everything on his fly rod. In recent memory, I can’t think of another group that has strictly used fly fishing during their stay.

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By Saturday, May 23, the weather brought more favorable conditions, and with it a new batch of fisherman all eager to hit the water running. Unfortunately, despite all the excitement, someone forgot to invite the walleyes to the party. On Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday, most fisherman found a sporadic walleye bite indicating a severe case of lock jaw.  There were some long faces on the fisherman returning for the evening. Many had questions about what to do. But while that was true for most, it wasn’t true for all!

You may remember back to the 2014 opener. Then-new guests John Moser and his two sons (John Jr. and James) were first timers to Pasha Lake. That week they put together fishing experiences that floored most guests in camp. Having never been here before, it was impressive to see these guys operate. Not surprisingly, this year they’ve stepped it up to a whole new level.

When John arrived on Friday, he broke out a pen and paper and asked “where do I need to go?” I rattled off a bunch of lakes, and he tried to write them down as fast as I was talking.  Then, starting Saturday, they started working down his list. And to that end, John and his two boys have managed to fill stringer after stringer of walleye, pike and splake. As I write this, they are on another adventure with the goal of matching a 150 walleye day from the group that was the lake yesterday.

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And then there is Tara and her husband Brent. 2015 marks the first time this couple from Toronto has visited Pasha Lake. They too arrived with excitement and anticipation. And to date, they haven’t been disappointed. Their back road adventures have not only landed them more fish then they’d hoped for, but they also got to experience getting lost in the Canadian bush and wildlife sightings that include multiple bears and moose. But for this couple who don’t have a ton of angling experience, they are having the trip of a lifetime. Their bag limits have include walleye, pike and Brent’s first-ever lake trout.

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To top it off, Tara earned her place in history here at Pasha Lake. She boated a 43” in pike that ceremonially inducted her into the Pasha Lake Thropy Club.  Their trip found them having so much fun that they booked for 2016 and ended up staying an extra day!

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As for the other fisherman in camp this week—well, yesterday they finally turned the corner.  The walleyes started cooperating and I’ve been told of a triple-digit walleye catch and a 31 inch walleye from one of our go-to, premier walleye lakes. Yes, it’s safe to say that the 2015 season is officially underway.

So what’s in store for the first week in June?

Well, not surprisingly, we are due for a little bit of weather in the next 48 hours. After finishing this report, I’m going to gather a couple days’ supply of fire wood and start buttoning down the hatches for the impending rain. It’s only supposed to stick around for a day or so and then we’ll be right back up into the “I can’t believe how nice this weather is” category. We do need the rain, though, as most lakes are very low.

Historically, fishing only gets better from here on out. The walleyes are completely done with the spawn and will be transitioning in concentrated numbers to feeding areas. Warming water in combination with hungry fish is a recipe for tons of smiles and photographs to prove it. We have another week or so of the trophy pike bite on the inland lakes, as well as good trout fishing. Nipigon of course is still brutally cold, so the big pike will be hanging out much longer. Not to mention, the speck bite is through the roof right now. That will be true for at least the next 2–3 weeks.

So there you have it, folks. It’s the explanation of my absence, the introduction to the new cabin #6, and a fishing report all wrapped into one. Now that the interior of the cabin is near completion, I plan on being in touch a lot more. Look for daily pictures and updates as I can get them out. We really appreciate you following the blog and staying in the know on the treasure chest of tips and need-to-know info that is sure to make your next Ontario adventure an incredible success.

It’s here, folks! I am excited. Sit back and buckle in—we have 6 more months of this wonderful time of the best Ontario fishing, fun, and enjoying all God has blessed us with!

Until next time…

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