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You Can't Beat Success

The weather still remained stable, but there was some concern about lack of some wind


The weather still remained stable, but there was some concern about lack of some wind.  Fishing is better if you have some chop on the water, especially for walleyes.  Still, Lynn Lake is the producer and we were only going to fish till noon and head out of town stopping at the Purple Cow for some of the world's finest ice cream.  Arriving at Lynn we were the only boat that had put in at the ramp, and we were than able to get the prime parking place.


The master fisherman of the lake.  Pelicans were thick and they came within feet of the boat.


We headed immediately where we had caught the fish the previous day.  Not a cloud in the sky and with the bright South Dakota sun, we were both worried we would loose what breeze we had.  It was far from a light chop, but more like a slight ripple. In the super clear water of this lake, the walleye would go deep to avoid the sunlight and the Flicker Shad might not be effective as we could only get about ten feet of depth with the lure.  My friend Bruce would put on an in-line sinker to drag it down, or we could use a bottom bouncer to drag it around in deep water, so options were available.


This is not good.  What we want are waves.


Bang, the fish hit the lure with a vengance, and started running.  Only northern pike act like this and he was a nice size fish.  I would get the fish to the boat and it would either take another run, or try to go under the boat.  They always seem to go for the motors at the back and I had to walk from side to side at the back of the boat to keep from breaking the rod or the line.  At this moment, the feeling was that a heavier rod would have been more appropriate.  Finally it began to wear down, and it was brought to the surface.  Pam grabbed the net and did a nice job of hauling the fish up and into the boat.


Decent size northern.  Once the Y bones are removed, it will provide excellent dinning.

The lake went totally calm, plus as we studied the graphs, were were not seeing fish in the seven to fifteen foot range where we had been catching them.  Still we continued to work the Flicker Shad, and continued to pick up decent size northern pike that were big enough to take out the Y bones.

Still at it after a hook in my thumb.  Notice how calm the water has become.

The Flicker Shad have some really small hooks and very very sharp.  So, it wasn't long before I drove one right into my thumb and of all things the barb went in also.  Needless to say, a discouraging word might have been said. I tried to back it out with my other hand but the barb was fully imbedded and it was not going to come out.  There were three options: 1. Rip it out, but that is out of the question. 2. Continue to push it through till it came out just opposite where it went in and clip it off above the barb, and then back out what was left.  I was not going to do that. 3. Squeeze the end of my thumb very tightly making the skin bulge up and tighten up and then see if the barb could be backed out using a needle nose pliers.


Number three was the method selected and using my left hand, I squeezed the end of my thumb covering the nail.  Pam took the pliers at the height of the squeeze and pulled out the hook, barb and all.  A minor hole was all that was there, and with a little triple antibiotic ointment over the wound we continued to fish.  A tetanus shot was not needed and as I keep myself current.  I should have taken a picture of the hook in my thumb and how we pulled it out.


We had a great morning and picked up some keeper northern pike, and once the Y bones are removed they will provide friends and family some excellent dinning.



The video above gives an excellent demonstration of taking out the Y bones in a northern pike.


Hammacher Schlemmer




Good hunting, good fishing and good luck.  Hank


More Stories By Hank Huntington

Hank Huntington, Esq., is a native of southwest Iowa, healthcare professional, entrepreneur, accomplished pilot, hunting and fishing enthusiast, connoisseur, father and husband. He developed this web site for people to share their fun and excitement about the great outdoors. The best part of this hobby is, after a successful hunting or fishing trip, you are able to dine on fresh game or fish, after all, “ How do you eat a golf ball?” asks Hank. Hanks father and grandfather were both avid outdoorsmen so Hank learned his hunting and fishing skills from them and has passed the tradition down to the fourth generation. Plus the love of the outdoors, and a craving for exquisite dinning, would round out the package.

As a small boy, he fished a local oxbow lake formed by the Missouri River. The lake is primarily old river bottom mud, is not real clear, and has a lot of vegetation. The southeast corner holds a huge lily pad bed, and it was there Hank learned to drag through the water and across the tops of the pads, a Johnson Silver Minnow, with a pork rind attached. This was the place for big mouth bass, and there were lots of them, and young Hank loved to catch them.

At age of 12 Hank started going with his Dad hunting, and by age 14 he was an accomplished shooter with a 12-gauge pump. Shortly after that he was given his first shotgun a Winchester Model 12 pump; he still has it today. It looks like almost new, but the gun is never to be hunted again. Duck hunting in the late 50’s had little pressure after the first two weeks of the season, and when the north wind blew and it got really damp and cold, the big Canada Mallards came.

After graduation from high school, Hank attended Midland College in Fremont, Nebraska. There he met a fellow outdoorsman, and their friendship developed in the fields and streams of central Nebraska.

Hank had little time for hunting and fishing while attending professional school at Creighton University. After graduation he married his college sweetheart and they settled down to career, family, and as often as possible, hunting and fishing.

Hank and his family frequently flew their plane north to Canada to the legendary Canadian fly in lodges to fish for Northern and Walleye. Here he taught his son all the things his father had taught him about fishing. Most of the time the two went alone to the north woods, but when camping was not involved, his wife Pam went along. She always enjoys the fact that she has caught a bigger Northern Pike than Hank, and he has been fishing for 60 years. Today along the Missouri River valley, the deer population increased to the point that in many areas they are a nuisance. The duck, goose, and turkey has also population have also soared.

Area lakes have been well stocked. Many even have a walleye stocking program that makes outstanding fishing. Several are within easy driving distance of Hank’s lodge-like lakeside home. All packaged together is great dining. By the way, Hank harvests only what he will share at a table with family or friends.

Hank says, “Whenever I am on a lake, in the woods, or in the blind, I am always reminded of God’s great bounty and His constant presence. And whether in the great outdoors or at home with my wife, I strive to be a good steward of nature and all that God has given us.”

Good hunting! Good fishing! Good day!

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