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Fishing in Canada

Kevin Hoffmann October 18, 2018

Fishing in Canada

When a friend I worked with told me I could join a group of his friends that were going up to Canada on a fishing trip, I jumped at the chance. We drove to Sioux Lookout and then rented some boats and drove almost another day by boat into the interconnected lakes. We selected a camp site on an island, reasoning that we would be safe from bears and wolves.  The island was mostly rocks and pine needles with just enough dirt to support  a few trees.

The first night, we built a fire and pitched our tents around the fire. The mosquitoes were quite bad and everyone retreated into their tents. I woke up sometime in the middle of the night and felt something was wrong. When I looked out of the tent, the fire had gotten out of control and was spreading rapidly and was already near the tents. I immediately got busy stomping out the fire but could see that it would just re-ignite, so I started hauling water in a cooking pot from the lake. This was no easy task, the rocks were slippery, and steep down to the lake and it was not easy to reach the water.  It took me several hours but I finally got the fire out, to my satisfaction. The other camper’s tents were farther back, and they slept through it all, and did not know anything until morning.

The second time I saved the expedition was on the way back.  The leader of the trip was unable to find a passage between two lakes that we needed to traverse to get back to Sioux Lookout. This was in the days before GPS. He had driven back and forth for some time until we were critically low on gas.  We stopped all the motors and tied the boats together in the middle of a lake. I asked him for the map and studied it for a few minutes and the surrounding terrain and then pointed the way back. We came out exactly at the dock where we wanted to be. I had some previous experience with reading navigation maps, having taken flying lessons.

The fishing was good, we only kept northern pike that were over 5 pounds.  We had plenty to eat and everyone brought back their limit of fish. We used only lures, no live bait. We also brought back many mosquito bites, there was no limit on how many of those we were allowed to bring back. In a group photo taken on the way home, everyone’s face is full of welts from mosquito bites.

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Kevin Hoffmann

Kevin Hoffmann was fond of visiting the New Ulm Public Library during his childhood . . .

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