May 8th, 2011:  This is not going to be an easy start up this year.  We still have large snow drifts in the yard but they’ve come down significantly since we arrived 3 days ago.  The runway is still wet and soft so I’m probably going to have to postpone my freight and fuel haul unless the forecasted rain doesn’t appear.  If the rains miss us then it might still work out.

We spent our first day getting the trucks, quads, heaters, stove, computers, communications, TV, and running water going.  The water gave me a lot of grief so I didn’t get it going until the next day.  Our water line runs over the ice and then into a hole that we drilled about 100 yards off shore.  The ice is still close to 30 inches thick on the lake but it’s not very good ice.  I sure wouldn’t drive a truck on it, but it’s not going away for at least another 2 weeks.  The ice in the back bay is a different story, it’s not safe to walk on and even if it was in places, it would be hard to get on that ice because there’s open water along the shore.  I’m hoping that ice will be gone before May 17th so that we can land our float plane and get to the outposts from there.  All the smaller lakes that we flew over on our way here were either open or had very rotten ice on them.

I took the snowmobile out to a spot on the lake last night and drilled a few holes to catch tonight’s dinner.  It started off very slow and I was getting ready to leave with only 1 Walleye.  I had 2 others but one was too big and the other was too small.  I tried one more hole and caught 2 more Walleye really quickly and I could see on my sonar that more were down there waiting for me.  I then caught a near trophy Lake Trout (I still have to check the stick I used to measure it to see how big it actually was), then about 12 more Walleye in very quick succession.  I was laughing out loud and having a lot of fun!  I brought back 6 Walleye but then decided I needed one more so I tried another hole and got broken off by another Lake Trout.  I told the guys I’d be back by 9:00 so I had to leave, otherwise I would have had a bunch more!  All the action started at 8:15 so I know what time I’ll be getting out there again tonight!