Summer recap/fall update

October 10, 2013

June…fishing remained good through the month… the hot crappie bite in early June ended about the second week as water temps rose. Overall weather was stable most of the month and water levels normal . Walleye fishing was consistent on the common spots close to the resort using lindy rigs and crawlers.  The week of June 22-29th we had several trophy walleye caught including a 29 incher caught by guest Brad Wetzell. Musky fishing did not pick up until mid July but we had one very nice musky( 53 inchers) caught by  16 year old guest David Cluchey. David was fishing with his dad ( Joe Cluchey).  Bass fishing started great in June never slowed down for both Smallmouth and largemouth. . Many large Smallmouth around 18-20 inches caught throughout the month.  Largemouth seem to be averaging around 3.5 pounds and very agreesive.  Soft baits like rubber crayfish in red or orange and the standard fat rubber worms hooked wacky style continue to produce tons of  Bass ( both Smallmouth and Largemouth) . The rusty Crayfish have become a key source of food for the bass..which we love to hear for Rusty Crayfish in large numbers can be harmful to the lake for they destroy weedbeds.

 July…Walleye patterns remained consistent with June…fish were being caught along weedlines with adjacent sand drop offs .  Leeches not used much this season for they were hard to get this year anywhere in Minnesota due to the late ice out. Night Crawlers were used more than anything by Guides and VLD Guests. Largemouth fishing was excellent thoughout july with most of the fish being caught close to the resort in the thick weedbeds of  Dago Bay and along the north shore of Wolf Bay. My cousin Scott Tausk of Western Springs, Illinois was up for a visit and caught a 53 inch musky below the damPic 121….on a Sinko ( Rubber worm). Scott released it. He also reported seeing a larger fish in the same area ..we suspect/hope it’s the musky released by Marty in 2010 at which time that fish was 55 inches. If that is the same fish…it tells us there is pleanty of food in that little one mile section of river and that 55 incher might be 57 plus and still living. The first week of July a huge 56 inch Musky was found dead on the surface by a VDL Guest in Head-of-the Lakes Bay. The fish was still fresh with not a single mark on it ..(including no hook marks in its mouth). The guest brought the fish back to the resort. I had contacted our local fisheries Manager to see if they could age the fish and get an idea of how long it takes for a fish to grow to trophy size in Vermilion . Here The email response from our Fisheries Mgr. D. Williams :

From: Williams, Duane G (DNR)

To: Ed Tausk

Sent: Monday, September 30, 2013 9:51 AM

Subject: Muskie age

Hi Ed, I finally got around to cleaning up and looking at the muskie backbone and clithera bone you sent me from that 56 inch muskie.  As close as I can tell, it is around 14 years old.  The problem is that older large fish grow so slowly the age rings are very close together and you sometimes lose them on the outside edge.  So that might be off a year or two.  I will see if the DNR muskie guru in Bemidiji wants to take a look.  Thanks for getting these for me.  I have never looked a cross section of vertebrate before so that was pretty interesting.  Good luck fishing this fall.


 The Largest Musky caught by a VDL guest this summer was a 56.75 inch fish caught by VDL guest Ben Rohan. 57-2Ben told me he caught that fish in a shallow weedbed area. Ben comes up often and is an excellent Musky Fisherman. July 17th  We had our annual take a kid fishing day on Lake Vermilion.  This year we had close to 100 kids participate. This a great local event that provides an opportunity for kids to get out fishing for the first time for no cost.  Our local Guide League, Sportsman Club, Fortune Bay Casino and Golf Course, Resort Assocation and many other local Businesses and organizations all pitch in to make this happen.  In addition, it requires voulunteers to provide their time and boats to get kids out fishing.  VDL had four boats with VDL guests/staff participating by taking kids out fishing.  This event supports getting kids introduced to fishing for there is very disturbing trend across the country where younger generations are not getting into fishing and hunting.  Fishing and hunting licenses revenues have been dropping and combined with Federal cuts in fish and wildlife funding..puts a lot the states in a position to have no choice but cut programs that supports our natural resources.  Minnesota raised the cost of fishing licenses last year for the first time in many years to address this issue….so our local /annual take a kid fishing event is a  great way for our lake community to do their part in addressing the problem.  

 August was a excellent month overall for fishing.  The first two weeks we usually see a lot returning families for the weather and fishing are usually both very good at this time..  This year was no  Exception .  Darin and Jenny Mullikin came up for two weeks and  again had great walleye fishing on Night Crawlers.   They know the lake well and never have a problem finding walleye.  We seen some big northern pike caught in august including Sammy Becker’s 40 incher. Sammy and his dad caught several big Northern trolling in the early evening  over open water for musky.    Smallmouth Bass continued to be hot all of august.  

 September ..Early September we had several groups of musky fisherman. One group of four flew over from Sweeden for a five night stay dedicated to only musky fishing. They had hired two Local guides and boated three nice musky  51, 47 and 41 inches.  Another group ( Mark Lazare) and friends tried Vermilion for musky for the first time.  Mark on the second day caught 45 and 48 incher.   Walleye fishing was average to good for most of the month. The second week of September seemed to be the best week for walleye with several guests getting their limits and reporting good fishing.  September 26 we held our second annual WalleyeSchool featuring instructors /walleye pros  Johnnie Candle and Doc Sonar ( Bruce Sampson). vdl10We had 31 attend the class . Weather was warmer with some high winds..but a lot of nice fish caught. The class improved this year even more with Doc and Johnnie adding more one-on –one time with the students in the student’s boats ( dockside) to help  demonstrate proper use of electronics. Water temps today ( oct.9th) are mid to high 50s. Getting ready for our annual fall musky outing starting on Thursday. This year expecting 50 people to attend. We have several great speakers lined up including the local DNR Fisheries Mgr.   Walleye fishing this week has been being caught on crankbaits ( perch colored) along the weedlines.  Large schools of perch are up against the weeds and the walleye ( especially larger older fish) are right in their feeding on them. Last night my son Austin home from College for a break caught and released several large walleye with the largest a 27 incher.


Crappie gone wild

June 9, 2013

June 8th, 2013

DSC05846Water temps today around 59 degrees. Fishing this past week really improved with the warmer water. Crappie action exploded with several groups going home with their limit of crappie that ranged from 12- 16 inches. It seemed only a couple of bays were producing all the fish.  Most of the fish were caught on slip bobbers and minnows fishing right up against the bank.DSC05844  As the water temps got up in the higher fifties the smallmouth have started moving in shallow for the spawn.  Brenda and Mike Schurhamer of St. Paul Mn caught and released a hugh smallmouth 20 inch/ 5 lb . OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Musky action was fantastic last week with over 20 muskies being caught by resort guests. One group ( Dan Starmach) caught and released 8 muskies during their week stay with the largest 48 inches.  Several resort guests reported shallow water encounters with musky.  Most of the musky being seen and caught were within a 1 mile of the resort.  Clayton Stover ( age 10) from Indiania caught a 49 inch Musky .DSCN0445  Northern Pike fishing was excellent with the largest of the week being 39 inches.  Both the Pike and Musky were hitting small baits ( spoons and spinners) in water less than 6 ft. The weed beds have not started coming up in most areas due to the late\ice out and lack of sunny days.  Walleye fishing was hit and miss the last two weeks . Some of the guest caught limits of walleye fishing the local Guides. One group of  long time repeat guests ( Pat Blackburn group) caught a variety of sized walleye during their stay with the largest 27 . 5 incher.  They spent most of their time fishing the channel/pinch ( 1 mile south of the resort). Pan fish are now showing up around the docks and for some reason this year we are seeing guests catch a lot of Jumbo Perch.  Normally we see Jumbos late in the fall when the walleye fisherman are fishing deep holes…but the last two weeks several guests were catching perch 7- 11 inches.  The next week we are expecting some great smallmouth action as they move into the shallow rock areas to spawn.

May 24,2013…..Memorial Day update

May 24, 2013


 After a very long winter and a ton of snow..the lake finally shed it’s Ice just after the fishing opener may 14th.  Fishing started out slow for walleye given the very cold water and walleye spawn still underway.  The first week of fishing was overall very slow. Many of the fisherman at the resort were fishing shallow water and found limited success. One group that comes every year in early may ( Novak/Bickford crew)  found walleyes in deep water and caught several limits.  One group pulled their boats and jumped into another local lake which was warmer due to being shallower and had some great Largemouth Bass action. Last Saturday a long time guest ( Ed Smith) took his two son-in laws into a local portage lake and found 52 degree water. The fishing was excellent they caught pike up 14 pounds, smallmouth up to 4 lbs and several walleye from 14 to 20 inches.  All the fish were caught casting Rapalas .  Today May 24th…our water temps are about 51 degrees and after the first two days of continuous Sunshine we are expecting fishing to really pick up.  If I had to guess we will see a good crappie bite starting in the next week and will last for at least two weeks. Water levels are up but not at a level for concern ( no water coming into the boat house).  The month of April we had record snow fall and this month a lot of rain so we should not expect much fire danger for the woods during that critical spring period between winter melt off until trees green  up again.  This week we have a lot of fisherman coming in and looking forward to the start of busy season.