Monday, April 9, 2012

A Look Back at the 2012 Coho Shore Fishing in Chicago

I started this blog three years ago, it's purpose was to be a journal of adventures in the Great Lakes region.  It kept me busy through some slow times, and took the back burner in the middle years.  I let it grow to an unsustainable point, with all of the forecasts, news, related stories, and links to other blogs and fishing venues.  I let it snowball and then I nearly killed it in the middle of last year, but given some distance I've realized that I miss it, and that I'd like to cut it back to the meat, what it was started for, to share stories with my friends and those who care to read it.

The first Coho Salmon of the year, on March 6th.
This spring we conquered the lakefront coho fishing like in no year before. We fished in the slim slice of daylight before the work day started, some days I had two coho on ice in my car, in the dark, in the cooler, in the trunk.  Away from everything, my mind full of the thought.  Those perfect coho scales covered my boots, they are still on some of the cork and carbon of my rods, I leave them there to remind me of the spring.

Two days after the first.
This year I was fortunate, I caught them under floats, with lures, with spoons, and with the trot line.  Every time I went out I caught fish, and everything I used caught fish.

One day three others joined me and in one morning we caught 34 between the 4 of us, myself catching 14.  The record warmth we had in the first quarter of 2012 brought the fish up from the south basin a month early, and they were only here for a short time.  Two weeks of perfect fishing, followed by a short spurt of brown trout, followed by only hopes that they would return, though I knew they were out in deep water, and headed north, toward the flotilla of boats waiting with peanut flies off Waukegan, Racine, and Milwaukee.

42 degrees.  When the surface temps hit 42 degrees, the fish will be here.  When they get to 40 it will be time to get out, though the water may take a few rays of sunlight before the fish get active.  Once you hit 45 degrees things will slow down, and 46 and up you'll see the slowdown kick in to full gear.  42 degrees and you can't miss.  Muddy water, clear water, wave action or glass, you'll find fish.


  1. Good to see ya back bro! Happy spring fishin. - Ying

  2. thanks for spending all that time out there, and sharing with us suckas who, for whatever reason, are not out there. greatful.