Camping all Summer at Manic 5 (part 5)

We were well into the month of August. The night were getting a little cooler and the days shorter. This meant that yes moose hunting was on it's way.

So the moose calling practices started. I was even trying to get my wife Mado to practice with us. No, she was not interested at all.

We were exactly the 21st. of August and had been practicing for a good three days. The sound for me and the boys was excellent. I said we'll give it a good try to night just before dark. Which we did and the sound, echo was great. We could hear it hitting the mountains a good 2 to 3 miles away. It was about 9 pm.

The next morning on my way to work, on the bush road to the Hydro Dam. Yes there was fresh moose tracks. At work that morning Guy who camps just beside us said why were you calling moose so late last night? What time did you hear me calling. Well I went to bed after midnight. That can't be me I was in bed at 10 pm. Unless I did this in my sleep. Well it was the same call as you do. So it was a real moose that came on our call.

At dinner time back at the trailer I told the boys about this. They said Dad we should go out moose hunting on the week-end? I said moose season opens 12th. of September. That's in two weeks from this week-end. They said no, we can go and call but no rifle. They said that would be a good and real practice. Hey you guys are intelligent that we will do. The first day Saturday or Sunday that we have nice weather.

It was Saturday morning we were up at 2:00 am. It was calm, had a good breakfast. Grabbed our pack-sacs, my 12 gauge shot gun. We were dressed in warm clothes. I told the boys were gone for the day.

We had planned to go up to the seven lakes. We could cover more ground and less people around, than doing this along the road. There are a few good spots up there and maybe the cow and her calf that we saw this summer might still be around.

It was 3:30 am. and still dark as we got aboard the dore skiff, pulled the crank and on our way we were. It was pretty cool out. I told the boys before starting the motor, what do you say if we try Danny's lake, just up the creek about a mile. They said okay.

It was 4: am. when I stopped the motor in that small creek. We got out of the boat walked about 10 minutes, found a place to sit for about 15 minutes without making a sound. Listening and breathing only. We listened and nothing to be heard.

I asked the boys softly if they heard something. Both nodded their heads "no". I said I'm starting the moose show. I had my hip wader's on. Had picked up a few dry twigs. Day light had begone.

I walked towards the creek, brushing the willows and cracking the dry twigs. Stopped and listened for about a minute. Started walking into the water lifting my legs as high as I could. Moose have long legs. I was doing the exact sound the moose does when it walks in the water. Stopped and listened for a minute, looked at the boys and nothing heard. Walked back towards the shore, stopped, filled my birch bark caller with water. Lifted it to my shoulder height and started pouring it back into the water. Exactly like a cow moose urinating. Listened for about a minute. Walked up on shore, with few crick and cracks. Stopped, listened and gave two soft low
call of the cow moose in heat. Did this twice. Sat down and listened. Nothing to be heard. Looked at the boys and no.

I looked at my watch and it was 5:10 am. We looked at each other once in a while and no one heard nothing. I made a sign with my fingers in ten minutes I'll call again.

It was 5:35 am. and I gave the second call of the female in heat. This time it was loader and we did hear the echo. The boys confirmed with their hands that it was far and the good.

Nothing no answer it was 6:15 am and gave another call but a little loader this time. I did it in two directions, up and down the creek. Looked at the boys and they shook their heads, no.

6:45 am we all looked at each other and said theirs on interested. We all heard the owl call. It does not do it like the owl, three times. It does it just once. Both do it, the bull and the cow. The sound came from up the creek. I knew that about half a mile from where we were that there was a small lake. So probably it was there. We waited without calling. I told the boys listen for cracking sound.

6:55 yes a grunt and another grunt. It was a bull and he was coming down the creek we could hear him walking in the water. I said into the boat. Not trying to make to much noise. It stopped I think he heard us. I waited a couple of minutes. Then gave a small cow call. No answer. I said to the boys I think he heard us. We waited. Nothing, he was dead still. I said, who wants to give the bull cow? Gary said I will. Okay give it a shot. He gave two bulls calls and the bull moose answered immediately and was on his way towards us and not to far.

He was just around the corner about 500 yards. He came around the corner and stopped, looked at us for a good 2 to 3 minutes. Shook his head from side to side up and down. Gave another grunt sound and headed slowly into the bush. We could hear the crick and cracking as he walked away from us. My heart was pounding and the boys also. What a thrill and experience for all of us.

Yes we still remember this today like it was just yesterday.


Camping all Summer at Manic 5 (Part 4)

We were well into the month of August. Did some great fishing trips. Even explored a couple
of lakes that probably no one ever tried. One of them was a surprise.

It was the first week-end of August and the boys and I had been checking the map. We were looking for a lake that the only way in was to walk and also something on the top of a mountain. We wanted a lake that know float plane could land on. So, fairly small but not to small. We found one on the map. We could drive about 10 miles from here. Then, which looked like from the road maybe a hour, hour and half walk if there's no trail, we hoped that there was none. We wanted savage territory. Tomorrow that is where were going and wake will be early.

It was 6 am and it looks like a nice day, not much sun, but no rain. Each had our pack sac, lunch, fishing rods and our tackle lures worms and dry flies in the pack sac, fly dope. We had light clothes and running shoes on. We knew that it would a long walk and hard climb.

One hour later we were on our way through the bush, not to thick, a lot of fallen trees here and there. Big trees, the boys asked if a cyclone went through here? I said maybe a tornado. It was like something about 400 feet wide just past by and pushed all the trees down to the ground. I said lets move over to the side and maybe it will be easier to walk. Which we did. Had a 5 minute rest and then continued.

We had been walking for about an hour when we saw a big black bear. He was about 300 feet away and standing on his back legs. He was looking at us. We stopped and watch him, it was trying to smell us. We waited and watched and after a few minutes it went on to doing what it was doing, eating.

There's the lake just ahead, it's smaller than we thought. We were a bit disappointed, but you'll never know what's in there until you try. The lake was an oval shape, yes like an egg. About 800 maybe a 1000 feet in length and 400 to 500 feet wide. A lot of trees had fallen on the side of the lake and some in the water. It looked pretty deep and the water was a violet or light purple maybe darkish blue. This was the highest lake around and a small discharge at the other end.

Oh yes, we also did see fresh moose tracks near the lake.

The boys had their rods ready and had found a place that they could take a good cast. Casted a few times and not a touch. We moved along the side towards the discharge. Nothing not a bite. It was close to 10 am. We tried different lures and tried lure and fly on the same line and not a bite. Are you guys hungry? Yes.

We sat and had a couple of sandwiches and grape juice. We were beside the discharge a very small creek. Did you see that, where the rings are on the lake over there. What I saw was a big fish I saw it's tail. What ever kind it is it's a nice size. It was after those bugs that's on the water.

The boys were casting and nothing biting. I said let's try it with just a small hook and one inch of worm. I'm putting a small sinker so that I can cast a little farther. Exactly what we needed as my first cast I had one and what a fight. I'll take my time because we did not bring the net. It took about five minutes and I had it on shore, well in the bush. I beautiful speckle trout, a nice red belly and lots of colors. A quick look like that, I say about 3 pounds and 18 inches. The fishing went on and great it was. The boys had something on their lines and they were having fun. I can still hear them saying, why big ones like this on such a small lake. We had one with each cast. Small ones and big ones. They were biting like crazy.

We fished for a good three hours, we did not really count how many we caught. But did keep three nice ones each. This would be pretty heavy in our pack sacs going back. I did keep two more close by and this was for the bear if he was still close by and I know that he would be pretty hungry and they can smell fish from a great distance.

We arrived at the camping at 5 pm. sharp without seeing the bear. A few of our friends came over to see if we did catch something. When they saw what we had, they want to know where we went. Which lake, I said the name of the lake is the lake with "no name" and that's the name we still use today.

Eleven beautiful speckle trout weighing from 2 1/2 to 3 1/2 pounds. A beautiful day and wonderful, once again fishing trip.


Camping all Summer at Manic 5 (Part 3)

Yes a few weeks have gone by and everything is going well. The children are having fun. The boys have explored the surroundings at least 3 miles around. They also built a tree house and did lots of fishing, even brought an old age couple, in the seventies out fishing on the seven lakes. The madam did fish before but never caught anything. I guess they had good guides because they both caught their twenty speckle trout. They were more than happy, they both paid the boys $25.

Our camping site was getting more visitors, campers visiting the Manic 5 dam and deciding to camp for a few days at Doreen Lake. The permanent residents had also grown, we were up to eight trailers. Everyone was enjoying the summer. All was going well and we all helped each other, we had become a big family.

We were in the last week of July, it was the phase of the full moon, a Friday night. I said to the boys we should go fishing around 11 to-night, with a full moon like this it should be great. They asked were? The lake next to us, Louise Lake. Okay.

We hopped into the 16 foot Prince craft skiff and headed for the other side. I said we will give a try here, close to shore, they come and feed close to shore at night. We all had something bright in color as lures, like white or yellow even silver. The moon was full and we could see the trees the shore line even the moon reflecting on our lures.

The boys gave their cast towards shore. I had told them to reel fast, this would keep the lure up on the surface of the water. I heard the splash when the trout hit the lure. What a fight he's giving me Dad. Bob had a nice speckle. Take your time. Once aboard it was a nice one, a 2 1/2 pounds 16 inches long. We caught 6 beauties each and said that's okay for tomorrows lunch. They were all in the 14 to 16 inches.

We got back to camp it was 1 o'clock in the morning and Mom was not to happy. Were sorry.

I said hey do you guys want to go and try pike fishing, it's fun also. The boys never ever were out pike fishing. There's a place on the Manic 2 reservoir a big creek or small river that runs in the Manic 2 reservoir. I saw this when I was out Moose hunting. Pretty sure that there's some big pike there. The said okay and I replied, not before Sunday.

It was Sunday and another beautiful day. I asked do you guys still want to go for those big pike? We have to bring the big fishing rods with the stronger line and the big tackle box.

It was 1 in the afternoon and down we went on the Manic 2 reservoir. We had a good 2o minute ride with the 20 horse power. As we traveled I pointed out to the boys were we had been Moose hunting a few times and the place that we killed a big bull moose.

Here's the place, that big creek, we'll go up as far as we can and then let ourselves drift down. Okay lets cast. Gary said I got one a big one, take your time and give him some lose, if not he'll snap your line. It snapped the line. I gave a cast at about where it broke the line. I said I got one, what a fight, it was huge and it didn't want to come close to the boat. I worked it very slowly and finally brought it in. It started to jump and bounce in the boat. The boys were having a close look but not one of them decided to take the lure out of the fish's mouth. I said don't put your finger into their mouth. They have a lot of teeth and few rows of them. As I was taking the lure out, my daredevil I said look, another lure in it's mouth. Gary said that's mine the yellow lure with the black diamonds. The boys said these things are as bad as sharks. Well we call them fresh water sharks and when they decide to bite, they bite on anything. It was a nice size around 20 pounds.

We fished for a good 3 hours, caught real nice ones and kept them. Did put the smaller ones, less than fifteen pounds back into the water. We kept 10 big ones in the 20 pounds and no less.

I said okay time to back home. Boys said, oh no not now, we like this, it's more fun than fishing speckles. Home we went.


Camping all Summer at Manic 5 ( Part 2)

The week went by pretty fast. The boys did a lot of fishing. The camping had grown as two more trailers were added to our Out in the Wilderness Camping. The boys are the one’s that gave it the name. The two friends and family were co-works and good friends.

Friday night was a gathering around the camp fire and singing a few songs while having a good beer. Oh yes for supper was the speckle trout that the boys caught on Doreen Lake.

Around the fire that evening I asked the boys and my daughter what do we do for the week-end? The response was quick from the boys. We want to go fishing at the 7 Lakes. Asked my wife and she yes that would be nice. So I said okay, we’ll take two boats and we have to leave here nine. If we want to try all the lakes. The seven Lakes are small lakes about 1 mile in length. These lake all communicated from on to the other without portaging. The lake all had nice speckle trout, averaging from 7 to 14 inches.

Next morning which was Saturday, a nice sunny day. The boys had the fire going and I said , bacon and eggs on the fire this morning. So it was and everyone looked happy, I said I guess everyone like the outdoor living and the pure fresh air and good sleeping we get. That was it, no television , no radio, no telephone, it was quiet. Oh if someone had to reach us that wasn’t a problem, the constables at the gate knew where to find me. I always let them know were we are and were we are going.

All that talking this morning were late and all the big ones are going to be hard to catch. It was close to 10 AM and on our way to the seven lakes. At the Hydro dock there was 10 Dores ( flat bottom boat made out of plywood ) they were 16 feet long and a good 5 feet wide. Each had a 15 horse power and let me tell not to fast but solid you could walk around in the boat and no danger to tip over. We took two boats the boys with one and Mado , Mel and I with the other. The boys had been driving our operating a motor boat since the age of 6.

We fished on the second lake and caught a few nice ones; well we kept the bigger ones.Tried the next two lakes and a few nice ones. They were not biting much because it was hot and the sun was over us and it’s noon. The boys it’s said no good at noon, it will be better around 5 o’clock. I said there on the bottom, the big one’s are on the bottom at this time of the day.

The boys pulled over to see what we had. I said two nice ones, Moms and Mel, 13 and 14 inches. The biggest one we have is 10 inches. We had a nice dozen speckles.

I said anyone for a sandwich yes were hungry, okay just let the boats drift side by side and we’ll have lunch. It was a beautiful and up to now a good fishing trip. After lunch let’s go too the 7th. Lake, I know a place were there’s 14 inch speckles, even 15 if they decide to bite.

We were at the 7th. Lake and it was close to 3 PM. I said right now the fish are on the bottom and not to interested in what we have. We gave it a try, casting and reeling fast or slow and nothing at all. I told the boys to pull over and I’ll show you what one of my old constables showed me when they don’t bite. I pulled out a very small hook from the tackle box. Took my leader, hook and everything off my line. All I had was the bare line. Tied that little hook on, got a worm out of the worm box and took only one (1) inch of worm, not any longer and put the worm on hiding completely the hook. Everyone was watching and listening.( I told myself I hope I catch at least one.) There was no sinker, Just the line, hook and worm. I casted as far as I could, I let the line sink right to the bottom, I kept pull more and more line out. Everyone was watching. I said I’m on the bottom and started to reel slowly, something is biting, I gave a yank and I got one and a good fight at that. It was a nice 14inch speckle. We fished, catch and release, we did not
Count how many we caught and put back. I say 100 would not be lye. We did keep 20 beauties. We fished up to 6 PM and said it’s time to head back if we don’t want to have supper to late.

Everyone appreciated this great day.

I will be back with another story next week.


Camping all Summer at Manic 5

The summer 1981 we decided to purchase a 21-foot mobile trailer and camp all summer up near Manic 5. No I was not on holidays for the whole summer, I worked at Manic 5 from Monday to Friday and finished at 5 pm. So it was great to do both, work and pleasure.

My wife Mado, daughter Mel 5 years old, my two sons Gary 12 and Bob 13 were all tickled about the idea and I was also excited about this also. It will give me the opportunity to spend more time with my love ones. Also to show them what the outdoors and wild life is all about. Although they knew quite a lot already.

School had just finished it was a Friday and that same day around 5 pm we were on our way up to Doreen Lake. With the trailer behind our 1975 GM vista cruiser station wagon. We had a good 3 to 4 hour drive up that steep and winding road to Manic 5. It was 238 km. drive.

We arrived around 9 pm everything went well. We decide to leave everything as is and sleep in the trailer like it was. Tomorrow morning after a big breakfast will be the installation of our home for the summer. The boys made a camp fire, we all sat there until midnight, it was a beautiful place the full moon was reflecting on the calm lake and I could see on the children, face that were happy and looking towards having a great summer. This without no television and the kids said that they could do it, the complete summer without watching TV.

We were the only ones camped in the wilderness and 5 miles from Manic 5. Doreen Lake is a small lake with small speckle trouts 8 to 10 inches in size. Like we say the best eating when their pan size. The whole family are all crazy about fishing even Mel my daughter, she caught her first speckle trout she was a little over 2 years old. I can still see her today, she held it in both hands and started kissing the fish, saying I caught one Papa I caught one.

The next morning after a great sleep and a good breakfast we were ready to put the trailer and all in place. Like we said we are here for the summer. Today is the 20th. June and we are not leaving here until school starts and that is the 6th. Of September.

Well it took the weekend to get all in place. We also dug a well, I had a water pump, generator, boat and motor, chestnut canoe, nothing was missing. Our fishing gear even spare ones for the visitors. Also brought my 32spc. Winchester rifle, as in the wild bush like this, wolves, bears do come pretty close. No garbage is left lying around and a trip to dump was once a day.

It was Sunday afternoon and the boys Bob and Gary decided to get some speckles or brookys for supper. They asked us how many do we want to eat for supper. I remember saying at least 4 nice size one’s. They were back an hour later with 20 nice trout, 9 to 10 inches in size and red. Great supper that night, oh yes supper is always late when your camping. It was 8 pm. All this was cooked out side on the open fireplace that we also built during the weekend.

That evening was just sitting around the campfire with the guitar and singing and me telling my stories about the old days. I said Dad has to go to work tomorrow morning and he starts at 7 am. I think 11 pm. is a reasonable time to go to bed during the week and latter on the weekends. Everyone said okay for that and we know that everyone gets up early when you’re out camping.

This story will continue next week....


Moose Hunting Trip Part 3

It rained all night and to really say it was pouring. It was close to 6 AM and still raining.

I told myself a good breakfast and a good coffee is what I needed. That morning was bacon and eggs and let me tell you with a smell like that my buddy was up in two minutes.

An hour later I was outside just looking around and thinking what shall we do. It was still raining a little and it was calm, a bit of fog on the lake. It looks like it’s going to clear up I told Reno. He replied I think so, maybe this afternoon? I asked him what do you want to do? What ever you want. I said there seems to be a cow around and that we are sure of.

It was 7:45 AM we got aboard my chestnut canoe and had decided to paddle the lake. Giving a few soft calls once in awhile, the bull grunt. We had packed a lunch and also our fishing rods were in the canoe.

First call about half an hour later, we listened for about 15 minutes and no sound. One thing the echo was great. We continued paddling at a very slow pace. Looking at everything that looked like a moose. Gave another call, the grunt 3 times in a row. Listened for about 10 minutes and the continued. Looked at Reno and he shook his head no nothing.

It was noon and we stopped on a little point. A sandy beach, there were tracks and looked pretty fresh. I said that’s this morning and it’s a bull and a heavy one at that. I said we will hunt from here there’s no wind and raining a little.

We pulled the canoe out of the water. Got our lunch and thermos. Had our lunch and I’ll wait for a while before giving the cow call. We sat there and listened. Not a sound to be heard.

Reno moved up to hide in the small bushes. I was in the water about 5 feet from shore. Just waiting and listening. At around 1:30 PM I started breaking those dry twigs. I listened for a couple of minutes and started to do the Moose walk and looked at my buddy at the same time, he was waving at me and pointing on the other side of the lake.

I looked and saw or heard nothing. I walked out of the water towards Reno. I said what? He said there’s a bull that answered on the other side. The bull grunt he said. I waited and waited. I said are you sure, yes it did it at least 3 times when you were walking the moose walk in the water. Across the lake was about ½ a mile.

An hour went by and nothing to be heard. I decided it was time for the cow in heat call. That’s loud, long and pulled out call. I did it once, twice, third ….and about the sixth time

We saw the big bull come straight out of the bush’ straight into the lake and was swimming straight for the call. This was a none stop, he was coming straight for us and grunting.

Reno didn’t move nor did I. It was about 200 feet from shore and about 500 from us. I looked at Reno and made a sign to him to get his rifle ready. It was coming out of the water and stopped with its head up in the air. Trying to smell us. I looked at Reno and said yes. Bank, the moose buckled up walked a few feet and fell.

This was all to fast, our hunt was done. The work started and let me tell this is fun. As we both take a great pride in the preparation of the meat. No hair and has to be clean. Plus the longer we leave it at the same place without moving it to tender the meat. We gutted it and rolled it over on to its knees

I said to Reno, what now? As always, we will go and move the camp over here. That’s

What we did.

For supper that night yes it was liver, bacon and onions and mashed potatoes. Our usual red wine, with of course our shot of cognac. This was great and always the second best part of a big game hunting trip. The first is getting the moose.

We spent 3 more days there, did not see the cow, we did some fishing, catch and release.

We did an excellent job on the moose meat. We relaxed and talked a lot of our other moose hunts. This was another great hunting trip. Oh yes the antlers measured 58 inches. A big and healthy moose.


Moose Hunting Trip Part 2

I was up at 5am and still pretty dark out. The night had been very quiet nothing to be heard except Reno's snoring once in a while. I got myself an orange juice and peanut butter sandwich. I was quiet in all the movements I made. Oh yes I still did not tell my buddy about what happened in the bush yesterday. Maybe I'll tell him later on.

I pulled the chestnut canoe to the shoreline with the less noice possible. It still was pretty dark.

I decided to wait until I could see a little better accross the lake. The lake was about 1 and half miles long and half a mile wide. A small lake with a two creeks flowing in. I wanted to get over to the creek on the otherside. I listened for a good half hour. Nothing to be heard. Got into the canoe and slowly paddle accross. All was silent not even a bird chirpping. Once on the other side, I paddled up to the little point about 500 feet away from the creek. I said to myself this is a nice place. I pulled the canoe up a little farther and completly out of the water. Oh I forgot to tell you my buddy is still sleeping.

It was 6:30 am and quiet. I cracked a few dry twiggs. Listened a couple of minutes, walked into the water, lifting my feet very high. Walked like a moose would walk in the water. Listened a couple of minutes. No answer waited a few seconds and gave a soft low call of the cow. Did it again a few seconds later. Listened and gave the same call twice. Listened for a couple of minutes
then gave the bull call the grunt sound twice in a row. I knew there was a cow around, this is why I gave the grunt sound.

Half an hour later I gave the same bull grunt twice. I stood still and listened. Did not hear a thing. It was close to 10am. I said to myself it was to close to me yesterday and it`s probably far away today. I'll wait another hour. I noticed that my buddy was up and sitting in front of the tent. A little wind from the east was picking up and that could mean bad weather.

At noon I decided to head back to camp, the wind had picked up a little more and there was waves on the lake. As I paddled back I decided to stop at the hump where we thought there was a moose standing yesterday. Checked it out and no moose tracks at all, it was what we all call
a stump moose.

At camp asked Reno if he heard anything. No, nothing at all but I saw some nice splashes and I think thier speckles. We'll give it a try this afternoon. Right now I'm starved. Reno said are we going to do some cooking and I said yes, you are. My pleasure, he said and Reno is a great cook.

After having a a t-bone steak, mushrooms and mashed patatoes and french bread, a good bottle of red wine. Yes we hit the sack for a one hour nap. When I woke up I could hear the wind. On the lake the waves were at least a foot high.

I asked Reno where were those fish jumping this morning? Just on the otherside of our stump moose. Lets get the fish tackle and rods ready. Did you bring any worms. Yes there in the cooler.

We paddle to the spot and Reno said right here. I had a small hook, one inch of worm, no lure or sinker just the hook and the line. I casted with the wind, my cast was about 30 feet total. Pulled out more line and I left it to sink to the bottom. As it was sinking and not quite to the bottom. I
saw my line pulling out straight, I gave a little more lose and then yanked it. I got it and if it's a
speckle trout it's a beauty. Something big and what a fight. Yes what fight and Reno we did not bring a net to pull them out. I forgot he said and I got one also. His rod was bent a good 90* and
a fight also. We'll take our time and no moose calling if the wind stay's like this. Back to those speckles, mine was in the canoe and what a speckle it was Reno was still working to get his abord. It was a good 10 minute fight. Finally abord and both close to the same size. They were red and the belly was red the bottom jaw was starting to curve up,(they had started to spond) this is why I was fishing deep on the bottom.
At a glance they weighted close to six pounds. Two like that is good for a couple of meals. We'll do a little catch and release. We did that for a couple of hours. Four or five each and it was time to head back to camp. They were all between 4 to 6 pounders.

Well for supper was speckle trout, french bread and white wine. Exactly what we had bud just to add our shot or glass of cognac before all that.

It will be back to moose hunting tomorrow morning and early at that. It was starting to rain.

I'll get back to you next week with part 3. We still have 5 days to go.


Moose Hunting Trip

It was Sept. 1981 my buddy Reno and I decided to go out moose hunting in Northern Quebec,
30 miles west of the Daniel Johnson dam, (hydro quebec). The Manicougan Reservoir, Manic 5.
Friday morning the first week-end of September. It was also the last week-end for trout fishing.

At Lake Louise that morning Reno the pilot yes another Reno were waiting for us. We tied the 16 foot chestnut canoe on to the float of the PA18 Supercub. All the baggage on board, Reno and I and up we were for a place called Cross Lake.

As we approched the lake I could see fresh tracks on the sandy beach. Landed and pulled up to that beach. I was the first one off and first thing was to look at those tracks. Yes fresh , this morning I said. It's a cow, nice big cow. It was 11am and a lot of time ahead of us to do some hunting today.

Reno the pilot was up and away, just had time to wave good bye. All the baggage was on the nice sandy beach and Reno was checking the place to put up camp. He said right here and I replied, good.

Once the tent up and everything inside, I said Reno, we will be quiet for a good half hour, no noice at all. He said okay. About half an hour later, not a sound was to be heard. I pulled out very slowly, from my packsack my two dried hardwood sticks. These are 2 feet long and 2 inches in diameter. I gave them to Reno and whispered, kock them together two to three times every 15 minutes, hit them hard together. I left for the bushes behind the tent. I also told him don't stop until I either shoot or I'm back here. It was 3:30pm, just the right time to get her interested.

I walked 100 yards and stopped and listen for a few minutes. I heard nothing. I walked about another 100 yards and heard my buddy hitting the sticks together. I stopped and listened. I continued for another 100 yards. Listened and nothing. I was about 500 yards from camp. I could see on my right side and in front of me for about 1o0 yards. But on the left, the bush was thick. I could see about 15 feet, without moving. I'll stay here and listen.

It was close to 4pm and very quiet, I could hear my friend hitting the sticks together about every 15 minutes. I listened and listened. Then I heard somthing like a rubbing sound on the spruce branches, it was close and on my left. I said to myself it has to be the cow. No cracking sounds. Then again, the rubbing on the branches and it was very close. I could hear it breathing and another brushing sound. It was very very close, and it was starting to get dark, I had to go to the toilet and fast. I could hear it breathing, it was close, I could not hold on any longer, my gut was going to bust, down went my pants, in that sitting position, I saw it, the big dark just about black colored cow, beautiful cow take off. She was only 20 feet away from me. That is really close.

I said to myself oh no, what did I do and what am I going to tell my buddy. I guess things like this do happen at least once in a life time.

I got back to camp, Reno was laying on the beach and making signs to me to be quiet. He pointed accross the Lake and said right there. We had no telescope. I said it looks like a moose standing on a hump. Reno said that's what I see also. It was to dark to shoot and you don`t shoot if your not sure at what your shooting at..

There was a moose around and if we want it we had to put all our luck together. No cooking to-night. We had a lite lunch sandwhiches and a couple of drinks. Time for bed, it was 7pm and see if that cow is still interested, with all that humain odeur and plus, she may be far gone tomorrow...

We are here for one whole I`ll continue this story next week.


Ice Fishing in Northern Quebec & Labrador

Another great ice fishing trip with my wife in Northern Quebec. I t was a beautiful day.

I looked at the thermometer and it was +2 C. No wind. I was 7AM and said Mado it's a great day to go ice fishing. A quick reply okay you want to go fishing.

The lunch was packed, a hot thermos of coffee and one with tea. Started up the snowmobiles, hooked up one sleigh and our way at 8:15 AM.

We headed for Ashtray Lake to one of my special places. It was a one hour drive and the trip was wonderful. Did not see any caribou on our way down. Ashtray Lake is 30KM from the town of Schefferville.

Got the shovel out of the sled and shovelled six spots clear to the ice. A distance of 30 feet from each. I checked the distance from the shore and said we should be in the good spot. Four to six feet of water under the ice would be excellent. Got my ice cutter out and running. the depth were perfect, I had what I wanted 4 to 8 feet was good.

Got my roll of green line 60 pound test, big chromed hooks and bait. My bait were suckers (carp) the best bait that the natives use for winter fishing around here. Also went and got a few big birch branches,at least 1 1/2 inch in diameter. They have to be strong enough, because there are big lakers here and that's what we wanted, the BIG one's.

We had all the lines in and it was 10:45 AM. At exactly 10:50 AM yes five minutes later Mado had a bite on her line (she said her line because it was the first line to move) It was biting on the bait and giving pretty hard jerks. She ran for the line, said don't pull it up yet, wait until it's really hooked on. I tie my line with a loop in it with a half bow. That means that when the fish bites and feels no tension on the line, it swallows the bait while moving with it. Once the loop is pulled to it's complete extension about 5 to 6 feet. The line stops and the hook is in it,s throat. No way your going to lose him unless the line breaks. Mado saw the branch move, she grabbed the line and started pulling, she yelled it's a big one. Beautiful laker at the first look it 's about 15 to 18 pounds I said. She was happy.

We got a second one about 20 minutes later and this one was mine. About 10 to 12 pounds. I did not bring my weight scale. I said we will weigh them once at home. Mado ran for another line that was moving. She stood close and waited. She pulled out and other beauty, maybe 15 pounds. We wanted to have lunch put impossible, the lakers were biting like crazy. Mado pulled out another one. I had another one on my line ran to the line and waited. It was nibbling at the bait. Maybe to small to bite on those big hooks. I waited. Mado yeld I got another one. I was waiting. It was starting to pull the line, I grabbed the line and jerked it. I had it and to my surprise a beautiful speckle trout and not a small one. Mado said I say 5 pounds. I said no around 6 to 7 pounds. We'll see at home.

I said you watch the lines, I'm hungry and want to have lunch, because this is also part of the fishing tip. I picked up a few pieces of dry branches and wood. Lit the fire, got the sandwiches out and toasted them. Mado yelled again I have another one, it was another nice laker. I said to myself if we want to eat, we should pull the lines out and besides that we had enough fish for a few weeks to come. 6 lakers and a speckle trout was more than we expected. Mado said one more I want to catch a speckle trout also. We ate our toasted ham sandwiches. Great coffee for me and tea for Mado. We fished another hour and Mado got another one, but not a speckle it was another big lake trout.

It was 1:30 PM. Pulled the lines out, packed the sled and headed for home. Did not see any caribou on our way back.

I weighed the lakers and the smallest one was 12 pounds, the biggest 22 pounds and that speckle weighed exactly 6 and 3/4 pounds. The biggest speckle trout caught last winter in the region was 14 pounds and the record last summer Manahec was 17 pounds 4ounces. That was a beauty.

Another great fishing trip and I said it in my others stories this place is paradise for fishing.
Not to forget we burnt (tanned) by the sun and wind while driving our snowmobiles. It's a beautiful country.