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.