Four of us are taking off soon for a winter camping and lake trout fishing trip into Ontario’s Quetico Provincial Park. Lows our first night in the woods are forecast to be 22 below zero. That’s Fahrenheit, not Celsius. We’ll have a wall tent and woodstove, so we’ll be toasty. But the coming and going may be a bit brisk.
Funny, you plan a winter trip for March, envisioning sunshine and balmy temps — I’m talking mid-20s. But we know that winter gives up grudgingly sometimes. So you put your dates on the calendar and go.
New fishing regs are in place for Quetico as of Jan. 1. These had been planned for some time. The new rules mean barbless hooks only and no organic bait — no smelt, cicoes, minnows, leeches or worms — dead or alive. I’ve stocked up on Berkley Powebaits and Gulp products, the scent-impregnated plastics. We’ll have to see if they perform as well as ciscoes and smelt on winter lake trout.
No sled dogs this trip, just four humans pulling four sleds or toboggans. We’ll plunk the tent down and day-trip from there. It’s always good to be out there, sharing the country with the moose and wolves and otters and foxes.