I decided to challenge myself with a few goals before the season started, something I haven't really done before. Completing those challenges would take a certain amount of dedication, often breaking away from guaranteed fishing success to venture into the unknown.
Here are some of the challenges I gave myself, and the results:
1) Catching a decent sized bass on ice.
2) Landing my first carp on ice.
3) Putting my kids onto some great fishing, hopefully having them beat their records for at least one species.
4) Catching carp on 5 new waterways.
5) Beating my previous record for number of outings done by bike.
6) Perfecting my boilie recipe to catch more carp.
1) First challenge I gave myself was to catch a decent sized bass on ice. Took me 2.5 days of solid ice fishing to finally land a couple, as the bite was slow, but I did succeed. Made it sweeter that my kids were there with me to share the moment.
2) Next challenge I gave myself, was to land a carp on ice. Unfortunately, the carp had other plans, so I failed at that challenge, despite trying prime winter spots a number of times using various techniques.
3) Next challenge I gave myself was to put my kids onto some great fishing, hopefully beating some of their previous records. Plan worked out quite well. Ari broke his record for Rainbow trout in January, then Northern Pike in July.
Avi caught his first few lakers in March, then broke his carp record in April:
Levi finally caught his first few pike in May, then broke his channel catfish and bass record late in June.
Eli caught this nice bass fishing at sunrise on our annual family bass fishing trip.
Last but now least, Chaya went fishing for the first time, instantly getting addicted like the rest of us, possibly more.
My nephew Ezzy landed his first bass.
My kids landed their biggest crappies fishing big flies with my crystal cast bobbers.
4) My next challenge proved to be the most time consuming, as well as demanding the most "sacrifice". Instead of hitting up some red hot fishing posts where I knew I could have some great outings, I spent time a decent bit of time searching for new carp spots, often exploring by bike. My rational was that if I didn't catch any, at least I'd get a decent workout trying. The challenge proceed frustrating at time, very rewarding at others. Barring any last minute surprises this season, I will have come close, catching carp on 4 new waterways so far, including some winter carp south of the border (in Texas).
5) Biking is one of my other passions. Late last season, I decided to combine fishing and biking, and the results were good. This season, I decided to dedicate more time to fishing spots around Montreal, exploring the waterways by bike. I put in a record 13 outings by bike, caught a number of fish, nothing huge, but very rewarding.
6) After some trial and error, I perfected my boilie recipe. During the course of the 2012 season, My kids and clients managed to land over 150 carp on my boilies, which often outfished the store bought brand 3-1. Some of the 2012 clients pictures are posted on my carp picture gallery at: http://www.freshwaterphil.com/carp-fishing-pictures.cfm
I did manage to break another number of records during my 2012 fishing season:
1) Shattered my previous record of 16 carp in 1 day with a whopping 40 carp in 6 hours while guiding a customer in mid June (postspawn).
2) I fished 62 1/2-1 day outings (so far) in 2012. In addition, I fished another 15 full days on fishing trips to outfitters, bring the total to 76 days when I fished at least once.
3) Did 6 trips to outfitters, breaking my previous record of 3.
4) Took out a record number of clients on guided outings, which I'll keep confidential.
Last but not least, I broke 3 more personal records, each multiple times on the same outing.
So there you have it. Another spectacular fishing season. Many thanks to my wife and family for putting up with my obsession, but most of all, to the good Lord for granting me the health and ability to pursue my passion.
I hope you've all enjoyed my blog posts throughout the 2012 fishing season, hope to keep at it in 2013.