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Gil Hamm: Day 2, 10 muskies caught

COOK, Minn.–Thick fog made it tough for what should have been a great day of fishing on Day 2 of the Gil Hamm Memorial Chapter Challunge on Lake Vermilion.

In some ways it was. I boated the biggest northern pike of my life.

Fog hung nearly all day and we even had some afternoon rain.

Fish were active, but it was not as productive a day as I expected with that kind of weather.. Only 10 muskies (30 inches or longer) were entered today. The biggest was only 47 inches, not big by Lake Vermilion standards.

The local chapter–Star of the North–extended its lead, adding two more muskies today of 38.5 and 42 inches for a total of 87 points.

Scoring is four points for a 30-inch muskie, with a point added for each additional inch. So a 50-inch muskie scores 24 points.

Another of the five teams from Chicagoland Muskie Hunters chapter of Muskies Inc. boated a fish to move into seventh, one spot ahead of the team I am on, the Grumpy Old Men.

The other team members of the Grumpy Old Men (at least two of us are not old and a couple are not grumpy) are Paul Hortenstine, Steve Statland, Brent “Bert” Cunningham and twin brothers Bob and Don Roman.

The Gil Hamm runs through noon tomorrow.

My partner, Statland, and I had an eventful day.

It started with Steve having a muskie in the low 40s follow up on a black spinner. Moments later came my big day.

A big northern smashed my Bulldawg at the boat. I thought at first it was the muskie Steve had raised. Not that, all the same the best pike at 39.5 inches I have ever caught.

Just before the 6 p.m. close today, we had a good muskie roll three times in front of us.

Conditions are to change radically overnight with it becoming much colder and windier, which may make it interesting on a big lake like Vermilion.

We shall see. I am giving up trying to predict how things will be here on Vermilion.