Another Canada Day come and gone. I had to work the day again this year but took in some fireworks in the evening. Most years, the family heads down to the river valley to check out the fireworks and the huge man made waterfall coming off the highlevel bridge. This year however, we decided to go somewhere else to celebrate and I think we've found ourselves a new Canada Day tradition. The Garison Army Base decided this year to open up its gates to the general public. Now we didn't get to see all the great things going on throughout the day which were many from what I hear but we did catch the headlining band, Jefferson Starship from 9:30pm - 11:00pm. Even my 11 year old daughter enjoyed this outdoor classic rock concert (which is saying a lot since it's probably the farthest thing from Justin Beaber there is) and to top it off the fireworks were way more than we expected. I even got to witness two styles of fireworks I had never seen anywhere before. We really had a great time and the folks that put it together did an awesome job especially considering it was their first year. We're definitely going back next July1st. Which reminds me, happy Independence Day to all my American brothers and sisters out there and a big happy birthday to my wife Sharmaine who also celebrates her birthday on July 4th.
On Wednesday June 30, I wanted to head out to Millers in hopes of hooking into a brown trout. I heard there were still a few kicking around in there and since it's been a long time since I both caught a brown and fished Millers Lake, I fueled up and away I went. Before I made my mind up however, I checked the weather report and the Edmonton area report said there was a good chance of thunderstorms with wind at 25km/h with gust up to 35km/hr in the afternoon. Then I though about Millers and the Edson report read 60% chance of showers with winds at 20km/h. Since I can deal with rain but hate wind, I made my mind up in a hurry. The drive there was looking pretty good at least up to Niton Junction. From that point on all I saw was cell after cell of bad weather. But I was persistent. When I finally got to Edson, I witnessed some of the ugliest clouds I had ever seen. Things were not looking good. When I pulled into the lake the rain was coming down hard with a soft type of hail mixed in (sleet maybe?) and one guy tightening up the straps on his boat and trailer. I sat in the car for about 20mins, watched the fellow leave and watched the rain and hail pound down onto my windshield. When the rain finally turned to a light shower I started setting up my pontoon boat. I've been having problems with the seams along the right pontoon bladder. I finally decided to fix this one myself using Auqa Seal instead of sending it back again. I wanted to see how well my patch job worked. It looked like it was going to be a great day after all, the sun started shining and just a good chironomid chop on the water. Then that all changed. The wind all of a sudden picked up out of nowhere and I was choked, it was strong enough that I feared if I stray to far from the boat launch, I may not get back to it. And of course there's that patch job making me think, "what if I need to get back in a hurry?" But I was determined and headed out anyway. I stayed pretty close to the launch, anchored down with both my front and back anchors (thank God I remembered both as I needed them) and with my second cast using a clear intermediate sinking line and an olive wooly bugger hooked into a nice 18 inch rainbow that jetted clean out of the water about 4ft above the surface and put up a great fight. Fished for another 45 mins without any other action and then noticed a big thunderstorm cell moving in my direction with lightening and decided to get into shore and wait it out. When the cell blew over, I made my way out again and got a little farther from the launch with the wind still pushing hard and got into another two, one at 16 inches and one at 19. Both of these were caught on a sparkle caddis as I observed cinnamon caddis emerging on the water and switched over to my floating line before I headed out again. About 30 mins after the 19 incher was caught the wind dropped down to about 25km/hr and I decided to head over to the south shore but when I went to pull the anchor I noticed my right pontoon was low. Ah hell, looks like the patch job didn't take. Back into shore. After some investigating, I noticed the leak was not coming from my patch job but rather the seam on the underside of the bladder. At this point, I was not a happy camper but the wind was letting up and I could still cast from the launch as I was the only person at the lake. So I grabbed my Sage with the clear sink line and the olive wooly bugger again and started to cast. Wouldn't you know it but I hooked into a 23 inch rainbow. She put a great fight with one fantastic leap and line screaming out of my reel. After I got her in and took a couple pics, I thought "it ain't gonna get much better than this, might as well leave on a good note". So I packed up and headed home. Nope, no browns but that lake has left me wanting more for sure. I won't be so long in getting back there next time.