By Scott Turner
Lake Onaman–Round 1
Trying to wait out the weather again seemed to be a good idea on a windy, rainy morning. By lunchtime, cabin fever was kicking in and mother nature had settled down to a nice steady mist. Seemed like the perfect time to get things on the move.
I loaded up the truck full of gear, the girls jumped in, and we were on to a very anticipated adventure to the legendary Lake Onaman. My crew today was going to consist of two 15 year olds– my oldest Jessica and her best friend Chloe–with my youngest, 12 year old Jacqueline. If we weren’t going to catch any fish, they were going to look good trying!
After a “brisk” walk to the lake (they are track and field athletes and I am no longer one), we were ready to tie into some of the great fish that we had been telling Chloe about.
On our way to the main lake, we pulled up along side and chatted with a couple of other Pasha guests that were fishing only a few minutes from the boat launch. This group of two boats was having some pretty good success both casting and jigging. I had thought of staying there but past successes of the main body of the lake had me on the throttle again.
The gentle breeze that we enjoyed while walking through the woods ended up turning into some solid two foot plus waves the wind-swept shoreline I desired. I tried a few spots that I could safely get to while keeping everyone in good spirits. Several moves and several different presentations just couldn’t get a bite going for us. I just couldn’t hold good boat position in the wind–and boat control is just so important. In the wind, I felt even if we did get into a good bite with these young anglers they may not be able to detect a hit, opting instead to head back to the shelter of the islands and bays close to the launch.
My fellow Pasha guest were still fishing so I decided to try a couple of drifts at a respectable distance from our new found friends. I have found over the years that Pasha guests are more than happy to give you any intel they may have to help you catch a few more fish. Is it the good people that come here or is it that there are just so many fish? I think it is a whole lot of both!
Chloe–or shall I refer to her as “Chloe the Walleye Slayer”–got into them first. Two drifts and she had three fish. I had everyone on different colors. Chloe was using a hot pink and white Northland Oddball Jig. Funny enough on the next drift so was everyone else!
Chloe the Walleye Slayer
I always try and put everyone in the boat on a different color presentation to start to increase our odds on find that right color. The first fish gets my attention, and the second one on that same colors makes me take action. I picked up that tip while sitting in a seminar of another repeat guest of Pasha Lake Cabins, Mark Romanack of Fishing 411.
After a bit of a soaking, the rain stopped to our relief. The crew had boated a few fish, the bite was not bad at all, and things were looking pretty good. Then the bite stopped, I changed colors again for everyone, moved my drift a bit and still nothing. We were fishing in shallow water at about 7 feet so maybe the motor spooked them? I can’t answer why it happened; it just did. And I was not about to waste any time trying to figure it out. Time to move again!
I have a great amount of patience or very little depending how you look at it. I will fish all day but seldom in the same spot if the fish are not biting consistently. This quirk served us well as we stopped at two more spots that afternoon. The first one served us nothing so we only stayed there for ten minutes.
That old secret to successful fishing “fish where the fish are” is an adage of mine. My crew was growing cold from the earlier rain, so I knew I had a limited amount of time left. We headed to a small wind-swept island.
Now by small I would say it was the size of a tennis court. What I liked about the look of it was there no waves crashing into it and the water was flat calm for about 10 feet. I thought two things: little bit of depth and easy boat control. We pulled into our spot, quickly killed the motor, and dropped back in our hot pink minnow tipped jigs. Within two minutes we had our first fish hooked.
My youngest, Jacqueline, had not landed a fish yet, and I was really hoping she would get into one here. Things lined up perfectly for Jacqueline and she caught the biggest fish of her life, a beautiful 26” Onaman Walleye. Once the commotion was over, Jacqueline–still grinning–laid down her rod
and said “I’m good.” I asked her if she was going to fish any more and she just looked me in the eyes with a smile and said “nope.” I think a lot of us could take a lesson there. The joy of catching that one fish had made her day and she didn’t want to change it. At least that’s what I made of it but I never did ask her.
Jackie with her big walleye
We boated a dozen fish within half an hour of this spot when I noticed the girls were all starting to shiver, and I knew it was time to head in–regardless of the walleye still having their feedbags on. The remarkable thing about this spot was we were consistently getting bit in only five feet of water.
Is anybody having a good time on this boat?
Mother Nature was definitely challenging everyone on this day. The walk back to the truck, the fish, and the laughs and memories simply just added to this successful adventure.
About Scott Turner: I have been married for 18 years to my wife, Tracey, and we have two talented and beautiful daughters, Jessica (15) and Jacqueline (12), as well as Sadie, our German Shorthair Pointer. I am currently the president of the Greater Windsor Track & Field Club which includes 200 youth athletes.
A conservative estimate of the days I spend afield would be in the neighborhood of 200, spread between fishing, hunting and trapping. I would have to say my favorite fish to pursue would be the one that is biting the best! I consider myself a generalist, I fish whatever species I can when I can. I am very excited to be a member of Pasha Lake’s Pro-Staff team. My goal is to fish as many lakes in the region as possible and report back to you. I hope some of my experiences at Pasha Lake Cabins help enhance your next trip or maybe encourages you to come up and try Pasha Lake Cabins for the first time. It’s a trip you will not regret.
Follow me on Twitter: @turnerscott2009