On the Water Weekly

Walt Bowen with a huge northern pike he caught Friday while fishing in Lake Champlain.

Courtesy of Walt Bowen

It’s been fun fishing up in the northern United States on Lake Champlain. One day I was catching big smallmouth bass on a Carolina rig (how appropriate) while fishing in Vermont within eyesight of Canada. Another day while fishing in New York I found a spot that was packed with big fish. When I’d bring in one fish, a huge school of giant bass would follow it up and surround my boat. This place is huge and there are fish everywhere.

I landed the largest northern pike I’ve ever caught Friday. It probably weighed over 15 pounds, was well over 3 feet long, had a big mouth full of razor sharp teeth, and nailed my chatterbait like a torpedo. The water is crystal clear in many places, and you can see them rocket out of the weeds and attack the bait. Smallmouth bass are also biting well but they can be hard to land. It’s like tying your line to a bulldogs collar and trying to bring it in. Hooks and lures get broken or the fish will get down in the rocks and cut the line. And the largemouth bass are the healthiest I’ve ever seen, fat and shaped like footballs.

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