Excellent Adventures and Cat Island Lodge Newsletter – The Year in Review
Another mild winter meant the ice was off the lakes early again this spring. This is always a bonus for us when it is time to get the outpost cabins ready for our summer season. Faron and Zack were busy early making sure everything was ready for the guests at the fly-in-fishing-outpost-cabins when they arrived. Zack who was loading aircraft at the float base last summer and flying the Aeronca Champ this year was on the Cessna 185. After getting checked out on the Aeronca Champ in June last year he was able to help Colin keeping everything maintained in mint condition at the outpost lakes and get the necessary training to fly the Cessna this summer.
Faron was busy flying our new Dehaviland Otter this summer. He always finds it nice to get into all the lakes himself and make sure everything is just right for the guests stay. The Dehaviland Otter C-FBEO was purchased last spring to help fulfill our long time goal of increasing our loads and comfort for our guests to safely fly them to Cat Island Lodge, our fly-in-fishing-outpost-cabins and the other lodges and camps we contract for during the summer. It also shows our commitment to our customers that we continue to improve our air service as well as our accommodations at our facilities each year.
The season started off real dry with a Restricted Fire Zone being enforced early in May. By the middle of may we started to receive substantial rain. From record low water levels in the fall no one was prepared for the record rainfalls we received in later may an June bringing water levels and winds on all our lakes to record levels for later June. July and August were great with lots of nicer weather which meant the lakes returned to near normal levels and the fishing was great.
The fall turned out real nice weather which allowed our moose hunters an opportunity to harvest a large number of moose. Unlike the past moose season where they were plagued with high winds, snow and miserable weather this season brought mostly cooler weather and nicer days for hunting. Art and Andy Turke showed determination pays off when they finally took this 44 inch Bull at our drop camp on Nabimina Lake.
2007 Fishing Report
The early ice out again and the wet summer meant good fishing with lots of big fish being caught and large numbers being caught and released. Over all numbers were very good this summer. Brownstone continues to produce some nice catches. Although the water level jumped almost 4 feet on this lake in June and meant the fish weren’t in there normal spots and tended to be spread out more than normal on the main lake, the portage lakes still produced those lunkers especially below the falls. All the outpost lakes did well this summer. Lake levels being high meant it was easier to get down into lower areas and opened up more readily accessible areas to fish.
Headwaters Lake was its usual great producer with a number of northern over 40 inches and those huge walleye being caught on the main lake all summer. This lake continues to amaze our guests and us each year. It is good testimony that if you “catch and consume only” it can continue to be a premier trophy lake for years to come. Higher water up on Headwaters meant the 2 portage lakes were easier to access for those who wanted that adventure of walking into a lake only fished a few times a season.
Sumach Lake fished well this summer. I think the draw to this lake remains the fact that you can go out in one day and catch trout, walleye, northern pike, bass and perch. A great variety for a lake that is only 4 miles long.
We are often asked what the peak time for fishing with us is. It is always hard to predict as it was this year because of water levels, changing weather and early ice out. There are just so many variables but with our long time, on going lake policies of “releasing the trophies” for the next generation and 90% of guest’s now voluntarily taking only a conservation license as well as the trend for fewer people to take fish home with them has all helped to make these fisheries some of the best fly in lakes available. These lakes are sure to remain top quality fisheries for years to come.
The U.S. congress has passed a bill which will delay the requirement for U.S. citizens to have passports to enter back into their country by land until as late as June 2009. I’m sure this will give people much more time to get passports organized for future trips to Canada. Although customs is more focused on security and citizenship now you will need to have 2 pieces of I.D. One must be proof of citizenship, birth certificate or passport and the other preferably with your picture on it. A driver’s license will work fine. Children must have there birth certificates and if you are traveling as a single parent it is recommended that you have a letter from your spouse regarding your travel. Although customs is usually very helpful with your entry it is a good idea to check ahead of time if there is any questions about your to admissibility to Canada. Read more tips on crossing the US Canada border smoothly.
Our Cat Island Lodge on Trout Lake
We are proud and pleased with all the compliments that we received this past year on our Cat Island Lodge on Trout Lake. Our return guests who liked the fly-in fishing wilderness adventure but wanted the finer amenities that only a full service lodge could provide them found Cat Island to be the ideal place for them. Those who wanted to give their wife or family a true fly in experience and all the creature comforts that a resort could offer loved it also.
What’s New for 2008
Walleye season opens on Saturday, May 17th this year and we are offering our “Spring Special” again till May 26th. Guests coming from ice out till then can enjoy a substantial savings on their trip. We are also still offering over night accommodations at the float base for those people who would like to stay with us on the lake before flying out to there destination.
As usual we will be continuing with up-scaling our facilities and improving what’s included in our Fly in Fishing trips for all our lakes. We continue to carefully manage our outpost lakes to provide great fishing opportunities and provide the best in modern outpost accommodations. We are continually replacing walkways, docks, re-siding and painting cabins, updating our equipment including boats and motors, fridges, stoves, mattresses and this year finally putting generators at all the camps to charge cameras, phones and depth finders batteries etc. that our guests bring along.
Also we have noticed an increase of customers who are using C-pap machines for sleeping at night and this will mean that they will no longer have to bring there own generators. Having the satellite phone at all our facilities for emergencies is also a comforting thought for those guest who although might not need a phone but want the ability to contact us or call home should the need arise.
We have also finished the wider walkway at Sumac Lake for those guests who are looking for an outpost to bring a family member or friend who needs handicap access. We have added a ramp to the cabin and are in the process of putting in an inside toilet. This outpost is our most user friendly with its level ground and the ability to go right from the cabin to the dock without any step ups. We also got to try out this neat invention that one of our guests brought up that we used to get one of our favourite customers out to Sumac Lake. Joe Feltz figured out how to get his favorite father in law Jim Johnson, who loves to fish but was finding it harder and harder to get on and off the floatplane with his handicap. It worked great and it shows if you want to fly in and fish there’s no excuses. Check out the smile on Jim’s face.
Rates and package changes
We’ve added a New Package this year for those guests that are tired of doing all the organizing and arrangements for there whole group. We take care of it all, with Our “4 DAY SPOILERS PACKAGE“.
A complete package for the busy fisherman with nothing forgotten and a good time guaranteed for everyone. Be sure and check it out on our website and brochure.
We have had to make some minor adjustments to our packages pricing to ensure that we supply you with the same high quality trips. This was needed due to the lowering U.S. dollar and higher costs for fuel, insurance, wages etc. that we have been burdened with. When comparing packages we only hope that you will take into account exactly what we are providing with ours in comparison to other outfitters and the level of quality of aircraft, cabins, equipment, the ample staple foods, satellite phones, weight allowances and professional service staff that comes with it.
On a Personal Note
We would like to start by thanking everyone that visited us last summer and the past seasons and mention that we greatly appreciate your continued patronage. Our on going success in this business can only happen with the great support and referrals we get from our many guests and we certainly appreciate the calls, emails and photo’s that many take the time to give us. If you have never been with us we would like take this opportunity to invite you to join us for a fly-in trip to one of our fully modern outpost cabins on one of our several remote lakes.
We realize that there are many choices when planning your vacation but be sure that “the spoils of a trip are remembered long after the savings of that same trip are long forgotten”. We only hope that in planning your vacation that you will compare all that we have to offer in relation to what is truly being offered in less costly trips.
We invite you to make your fly in vacation to Canada one that you will cherish with fond memories for years to come and what ever trip you choose we hope that it is an “Excellent Adventure”.
Faron & Joyce Buckler