Solving Problems with Nature - Naturally
ERIC P. ORFF
Certified Wildlife Biologist
Wildlife Author - Wildlife Lecturer -
Non-Lethal Control of Bats since 1983
New Hampshire Nature Notes by Eric Orff
Tuesday 08/10/2004 Great Great Gogama!
What a week I had fishing in Northern Ontario! I lucked into a fishing trip I have spent a life dreaming of. It was a fly-in fishing camp. Gogama Lodge in Gogama Ontario (http://www.gogama.com/) flies the sports into one of a couple dozen lakes for the day. You decide what fish species you want to fish for in the evening and the next morning in you go with a 10 to 20 minute float plane trip.
I had watched a TV show in the 1960s called "The Flying Fishermen" where Gadabout Gaddis would fly into this lake or that, to fish special places each week. For five days I was Gadabout.
Nationally known outdoor writer Stu Bristol from Maine led this years outdoor writers group to Gogama as he has for a decade. Outdoor writer Sam Carr from Rhode Island was the third writer and Stu brought his son-in-law Lance Lavoie. We had a blast all week long as each of us were diehard fishermen.
Mondays fly-in to a remote lake was topped by a sudden thunderstorm that had us heading for cover in a cove with the shortest trees I could see from the water. Just as we tucked into the cove a lightning bolt struck nearby. In fact four thunder storms rolled through nearly all day long cutting out fishing time but leading to a memorable day. This trip will always be remember for this 40-year worst storm as much as for the fantastic fishing.
Thankfully the rest of the week had sun and fish filled days. It was so wonderful to be on lakes, and each lake is pretty big at least a mile long, where there was no sign of another human. Desolate wonderful wilderness. Oh I did manage to fall backwards out of a small skiff the day Sam and I hiked another half hour to an even more remote trout pond after being delivered to the lake by plane. Surprisingly my little digital camera that managed to make the swim with me in my pocket has started working again after I baked it on the dash of Sam's car on the 15 hour drive back. I love that little Minolta DiAmage camera.
I caught both walleyes and northern pike two new species of fish for me on the trip. One day the camp owner asked us to bring back a stringer of smallmouth bass for the camps weekly fish fry. We brought back 17 bass ranging from three to five pounds! I usually don't keep fish, but an order is an order. Meals at the lodge each morning and night were unbelievable as well. A whole roasted chicken at our table one night, prime rib another, and steaks cooked on a wood fired grill to order.
I was surprised with the small number of road killed animals in the nine-hour trek across the trans Canadian highway each way. I think I counted 4 dead woodchucks a couple of raccoons and a mink on the way up and similar numbers six days later on the way back. The only deer I saw was a live one a couple of miles into NH on the way back. And she was live. There were far more road kills in VT and NH than anywhere else on the trip. I haven't quite figured this one out yet.
All in all it was a fantastic trip and I would recommend it to anyone who is an avid fishermen. If you're interested contact Dick Harlock at 705-894-2770 or derryair1!aol.com.
2004-07-24 Spotted an osprey on the Suncook River last evening. Nest?
2004-08-14 Swallows are migrating south.
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