Questions about water transportation and fishing on the island.
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Silly question - any of you ever fish on IR without a pole? Maybe just bring some line and a couple lures with a stick you find there? Just trying to decide if we want to hassle with the fishing gear. Thanks for any feedback.
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Certainly you could do that and maybe even have some fun. It could work fine in some other lake, filled with Bluegill or Sunfish, where a cane pole with a bobber is the norm, but what you are most likely to hook on Isle Royale is a Northern Pike. A stick with a hard fixed line will be no match for the fight and struggle that will ensue. I would try it to fill a very empty belly but not for enjoyment or an expected meal. Yellow Perch is also a possibility and would be easier to land.
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In my experience, much like the lottery, my probability of catching fish whether using fishing gear or not is not statistically significant. It seems that on the island you have to know what you are doing. A twice a year fisherman like me has little luck. The charters on the island that guarantee bag limits are usually in the deep areas not accessible from the shore.
I have taken fishing gear every year for the past many and have caught exactly one fish from shore. It was delicious and fed six hungry hikers, but not really worth all of the broken and lost gear.
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In our two trips paddling the inland lakes, we caught plenty of Northerns, which in my mind justified packing a pole, some tackle, a net, a fillet knife, a lightweight fry pan, some butter-flavored Crisco and breading (weight is less of an issue when traveling by canoe or kayak).
We never caught anything casting from shore.
If and when we do a backpacking trip on the island, we won't be bringing fishing gear.
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If I am going to be near good fishing lakes, it is worth it to bring a rod and reel (lures ect) to fish. I have caught fish from Ritchie, Chickenbone, Sargent, Feldtmann, Mason, and fishing off the docks at a few places on Superior.