I was itching to fish, but didn’t feel like getting up early and getting all my ice gear ready to go and driving an hour or so. Plus, had a baptism to attend this morning, that of little Ambrose Lengenfelder, which the parents had done EF-style, which means the priest even exorcised the salt. Good times, but fish needed chasing.
So I decided since it was just above freezing I’d try my favorite river spot all of 15 minutes away, door to shore, Heskett Station north of Mandan, ND. Packed up, put on my waders, and went waste deep in the Missouri River. Looked like this:
Heskett’s pretty good from spring into June, but today, nothing doing. Tried jigging minnows, Swedish Pimples, a Mepps Cyclops spoon, and cranks. Nothing. Walleye are like that; either they’re not there, or sometimes they’re there but simply won’t bite. Might simply be too early and too cold.
I was actually one of three parties out shore fishing today, in spite of the ≈32° temperature, so I’m not crazy. I was able to stay out for some time until my fingers found themselves in pre-frostbite condition, at which point I decided it was the better part of valor and more prudent to let the walleyes get a bit fatter. It really wasn’t cold, and it’s actually warmer being in the water up to one’s waist than being out on the shore. But the wind: that will do a person in every time.
In any event, it was nice to try out some new tackle (I really think the Mepps Cyclops will be good in shallow water) and clear my head for a couple hours. I’m sure the walleye will pick up in coming weeks.