Fishing in the Boundary Waters and Quetico


Fishing Quetico and the Boundary Waters
Handling the Fish you catch.

Having handled thousands of fish of many species and sizes I often assume that catching them is the tricky part. But in reality there can be serious painful consequences if some species of fish are not handled properly. Let's look at each of the species of fish you will likely encounter in the BWCAW/Q and how they can be handled safely.

Throughout this discussion on handling fish...

I have not mentioned the use of landing nets. The reason is this; more often than not landing nets increase the time and effort it takes to get fish off the hook, released and/or put on the stringer. When a fish with treble hooks in its mouth starts thrashing around in a landing net it can create a terrible tangle which could take several minutes to undo especially while trying to work from a canoe. That usually means death for the fish whether intended or not. If you must use a net to land fish so be it. Better, I believe, to learn and practice safe handling without the net for the good of the fish.

I've recently been experimenting with fish grippers (jaw locking devices) to help handle fish canoe-side, especially the bigger ones. So far, I am quite pleased with even the least expensive versions of them. Once the gripper is latched onto the fish's jaw, it can be tethered to the side of the canoe while the hooks are removed and the camera is readied for pictures. Here is an example/picture of one in use.

Quiet Journey's fishing forum is an excellent way to participate in discussions, learn about new techniques and equipment and get fishing information for the area of the parks you intend to visit. Check it out and if you like what you see and decide to stay, consider a donation to preserve the high quality of this site.

The advice above will get you started. The real joy of fishing is to try new products and techniques and discover your own style. Then, share it with someone that has less experience. Above all have fun and enjoy a great resource.

Handling Fish | Bass | Northern Pike| Walleyes | Lake Trout

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