Sports

Weather great for lowland lake opener Weather great for lowland lake opener

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Saturday’s sunny weather made for a great lowland lake opener, the largest single sporting event in the state, and one to remember for many anglers.

The lowland lake opener is one of my favorite days of the year as well.

Why you ask? It is because this is the day many youngsters get their first taste of fishing. It adds a whole new generation of anglers to the mix.

Lakes all over the state were packed, some to capacity, with families out enjoying the beautiful weather. Heart, Erie and Lone lakes are a few of the ones in this part of the state that get lots of attention.

Driving by Lake Erie on my way to Heart Lake, I noticed there were a large number of boats on the water.

Heart Lake is a great place to introduce new anglers to the sport. With more bank access than most lakes in the region and a decent boat launch, you are sure to get on the water sooner than even Lake Erie which has a launch with very little bank access.

When I was younger, it was commonplace to get out to Heart the night before and do some camping just to reserve your spot on the bank. Now getting up a bit earlier than usual will usually suffice. Once there, it does not take long for a person to land their very first trout. Before you know it, you have your limit and it is time to go home.

Because of the popularity of the lowland lake opener, many anglers are eager to share their success stories with you. You can sit on the bank and watch your neighbor reel in fish after fish while you are not getting a nibble, and he will be more than willing to show you his set up or even offer you some of his bait. You won’t find that kind of cooperation everyday.

Power Bait was the choice for most on opening weekend. Orange, chartreuse, and rainbow are the most common colors.

Rigging your line is just as easy.

Put a slip sinker on your main line then attach a swivel. Tie a small treble hook on an 18-inch leader and then attach it to the swivel.

Probably the most important thing is to test your bait before you cast. Put a small ball of it on your hook and then set your hook in the water.

If you have the right amount of bait, it should float. If not, add enough until it does. This will keep it above the weeds and in the trouts’ strike zone.

As popular as the opener is, you should have some decent fishing throughout this week and into next week before things will start to slow down.

If freshwater fishing is not your thing, then hold onto your hats because May 1 is when the ling cod season opens. This by far is my favorite fishing.

The first slack tide for Deception Pass is around 7:45 in the morning with two more throughout the day. I like fishing around the pass the first couple of days because it is close and the fishing is good.

Use herring, jigs and swim baits around rocky structures.

The ling cod, the tiger of the deep, loves to hide out in holes and ambush their prey as it swims by, so you have to make sure you keep your rig on the bottom.

I will write more about the techniques of ling cod fishing in my next column.

This weekend is the much anticipated shrimp season opener as well. Not only can you catch a ling or a halibut (which, by the way, has slowed down a bit) but you can also catch a nice side dish to complement your meal.

The most popular areas are Biz Point and the south side of Lopez Island.

Be careful in these spots as the current can be pretty bad at times and you can lose a pot or two if you aren’t careful.

Saturday’s sunny weather made for a great lowland lake opener, the largest single sporting event in the state, and one to remember for many anglers.

The lowland lake opener is one of my favorite days of the year as well.

Why you ask? It is because this is the day many youngsters get their first taste of fishing. It adds a whole new generation of anglers to the mix.

Lakes all over the state were packed, some to capacity, with families out enjoying the beautiful weather. Heart, Erie and Lone lakes are a few of the ones in this part of the state that get lots of attention.

Driving by Lake Erie on my way to Heart Lake, I noticed there were a large number of boats on the water.

Heart Lake is a great place to introduce new anglers to the sport. With more bank access than most lakes in the region and a decent boat launch, you are sure to get on the water sooner than even Lake Erie which has a launch with very little bank access.

When I was younger, it was commonplace to get out to Heart the night before and do some camping just to reserve your spot on the bank. Now getting up a bit earlier than usual will usually suffice. Once there, it does not take long for a person to land their very first trout. Before you know it, you have your limit and it is time to go home.

Because of the popularity of the lowland lake opener, many anglers are eager to share their success stories with you. You can sit on the bank and watch your neighbor reel in fish after fish while you are not getting a nibble, and he will be more than willing to show you his set up or even offer you some of his bait. You won’t find that kind of cooperation everyday.

Power Bait was the choice for most on opening weekend. Orange, chartreuse, and rainbow are the most common colors.

Rigging your line is just as easy.

Put a slip sinker on your main line then attach a swivel. Tie a small treble hook on an 18-inch leader and then attach it to the swivel.

Probably the most important thing is to test your bait before you cast. Put a small ball of it on your hook and then set your hook in the water.

If you have the right amount of bait, it should float. If not, add enough until it does. This will keep it above the weeds and in the trouts’ strike zone.

As popular as the opener is, you should have some decent fishing throughout this week and into next week before things will start to slow down.

If freshwater fishing is not your thing, then hold onto your hats because May 1 is when the ling cod season opens. This by far is my favorite fishing.

The first slack tide for Deception Pass is around 7:45 in the morning with two more throughout the day. I like fishing around the pass the first couple of days because it is close and the fishing is good.

Use herring, jigs and swim baits around rocky structures.

The ling cod, the tiger of the deep, loves to hide out in holes and ambush their prey as it swims by, so you have to make sure you keep your rig on the bottom.

I will write more about the techniques of ling cod fishing in my next column.

This weekend is the much anticipated shrimp season opener as well. Not only can you catch a ling or a halibut (which, by the way, has slowed down a bit) but you can also catch a nice side dish to complement your meal.

The most popular areas are Biz Point and the south side of Lopez Island.

Be careful in these spots as the current can be pretty bad at times and you can lose a pot or two if you aren’t careful.

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