Sunday, January 25, 2009

Carson Pass and Beyond - Red Lake

Just across Carson Pass on Highway 88 is Red Lake. As you descend the pass, it's the lake that looks like a pond on the right side, but don't let it fool you. There are two accesses to the lake. The first one is a dirt road about 1/4 mile before the paved turn off. You kind of have to just drive into the dirt path and then wind around until you pop out at the dirt, boat launch area. The other access is the paved road that goes to the dam. This is one of the first things you see when you get there.
Took me a few times to figure out what it is. A cannon for avalanche control. Never saw one before but it makes sense. When you get there, just look where it's aimed.
Now the what, where, & how of fishing this lake.
I've found that most of the fish stay close to the bank. I've only caught Brook Trout, but there's also Rainbow and Lahotan Cutthroat in the lake. That's the what.
The where, is the dam. I've fished from where you park to the other end and caught fish all along it. Other than that, nothing. Doesn't mean they aren't there.
The how. I started with the old stand by Panther Martins. Caught one or two, but that was all. Back in the Superstitions Post, I mentioned a guy I met that always brings "a net or Annette" with him fishing. He also introduced me to fishing this lake with Kastmasters. I've never been one to fish with Kastmasters, but since I always listen to what other fishermen have to say, I accepted the one he offered me and tried it. First fish hit it so hard, almost pulled me off the dam. Just kidding. I was "hooked". Been the best lure for this lake ever since. Solid Silver and Solid Gold seem to work the best. Although, We (my Son & I) have had days when Panther Martins worked best. Brings us back to having an arsenal of lures. A lot of other fishermen I've met there also say that Power Bait works well. I've always gotten a limit before I resorted to Power Bait, so we can only take their word for it. In an earlier post, I mentioned about stopping at Cooks Station for coffee before heading up the hill. The last day fishing in December at Red Lake, I did stop for coffee, but I only caught one fish. The ice had already started settling on the lake and open water was 10 or 15 feet from shore. Not being able to get a lure out, I drove to the other side, which was clear, and walked back across the dam until I came to the edge of the ice. I saw a swirl back the way I came and threw a silver/yellow Panther Martin just beyond. I hooked a Brook Trout that was every bit of 2 pounds and about 16 inches long. He was such a nice specimen, I could only put him gently back into the water. I figured that since this was probably my last fishing day in 2008, I'd just end it with that memory.
2008 was a great fishing year for me even with the surgery and recovery at the end of May. I hope this information I provide gets you memories like the one above.
Till next time, remember: "A bad day fishing is better than any day at work".

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