I watched the weather as usual and picked a three day period to make a trip to Webster, SD to fish the glacial lakes. I checked in with Sportsman Cove. They said that Waubay Lake was out, unless I wanted to catch white bass. Walleye was on the schedule and the owner of the store had two excellent suggestions. The first was Swan Lake to the south. That has been fished before and is a good producer. The boat ramp is on the east side of the lake and the wind was out of the northwest and starting to blow. I would be fishing by myself so handling the boat on and off the trailer would be difficult for one person.
|Looking southeast from the dock.|
|Looking west along the south shore of the first of the three lakes. The fish were not in the trees or the shallows on the outside. It paid to get out in the middle of the lake where they were schooled up.|
|This access to the lake is terrible. S.D. has not invested any money in this access. I think it is worse than the access on Swan Lake south of Webster.|
I started out following his advice. I worked in 10 to 15 feet of water using a chartreuse spinner with an orange tip. I got nothing. The good news was both graphs were just singing as I graphed fish in all depths.
|This picture does not show well how rough the lake became. I used the kicker motor to keep the boat sideways to the waves. Since I was by myself, I put on a life jacket. Not that is not a bad idea to wear one anyway, now was the time to get it on.|
|I took this selfie to prove to my wife I had the life jacket on.|
|Here is another farmstead taken over by mother nature. The home to the left of the picture was a really nice big two story that had to be walked away from. This is the result of the glacial lakes expanding and destroying someones dreams.|
Moving back out to the deep water the same process was repeated. All I needed were two walleye 15 inches or longer. The same thing happened again. All the fish were small and I was running out of worms. Pinching the worms into two or three pieces and spraying on some Gulp Alive kept the fish pounding the line.
|Not a good picture, but there is a baby walleye that measured about 12 inches when I lifted it out of the water. Most of the fish caught were in the 13 to 14.5 inch range.|
The wind began to really pound and the lake was really whipping up with big swells. I put my life jacket on and as proof, took a selfie to show my wife that I had done it.
Around 3 PM I threw in the towel. Fishing had started about 7:30 and I had wasted about 1.5 hours just figuring things out. After that, there was nothing but solid catching at the rate of 6 to 10 per hour other than the 45 minutes spent with the Flicker Shad.
I never kept a count, but it had to be in the range of 40 to 50 fish boated and tossed back. This did not include the number of strikes that took place where no fish was landed. It has been years since I have caught walleye that fast and furious.
In the next two to three years, this lake will be a big producer as the fish mature.
Good hunting, good fishing, and good luck. Hank.
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