Youngest Anglers Catch Biggest Fish At Canada Musky School

The youngest fishermen produced the biggest musky catches at the University of Esox Canada Musky Adventure School, held July 16-23 at Sandy’s Blackhawk Island Camp on Lake of the Woods.

Students from four states and Ontario joined the University of Esox staff for the week-long event. A total of 88 muskies were caught with five 50-inchers leading the way. Forty-nine of the muskies measured longer than 40 inches, with 21 over 45 inches.

“We saw unprecedented fluctuation in the water temperatures during the week, and that made the musky bite interesting, to say the least,” said Musky Hunter Editor Jim Saric. “The water temperature was 74 when we arrived, rose to 82 at midweek, and had fallen to 69 at the dock when we left. We saw a tremendous number of big fish, and getting them to bite was the challenge.

“But nearly 25 percent of the muskies caught were longer than 45 inches, so our students did well.”

Two anglers tied for the largest musky caught by a student. Zac Lundgren, 21, of Independence, Minnesota, started the school off with a 50-incher caught on a Double Cowgirl in a figure-8 the first evening while fishing with Saric. Two days later, Chris Dzekute, 19, of Woodbury, Minnesota, boated a 50-incher, also on a Double Cowgirl. He was fishing with Musky Hunter Managing Editor Steve Heiting at the time.

“The excitement these guys showed catching their biggest muskies was infectious,” said Heiting. “Everybody at the school was thrilled for their accomplishment.”

Eleven-year-old William Buhler of Racine, Wisconsin, caught his largest musky ever, a 48-incher, on a TopRaider in a figure-8. And, 15-year-old Jack Redmond of Monee, Illinois, boated his personal best, a 43-incher on a Shallow Invader.

Charlie Buhler of Racine, Wisconsin, won the school’s Top ’Lunge Award for catching the most muskies by a student. He caught seven, topped by a 42-incher.

Bucktails of various makes and designs boated 67 of the 88 muskies registered. Nine were caught on minnowbaits and eight on topwaters. “Figure-8’s were hugely important and about half of the muskies were caught in this maneuver,”?Heiting noted.

Lodge owner Bill Sandy boated the biggest musky of the school, a 52-incher on a bucktail. Saric caught a 51-incher on a Double Cowgirl, and instructor Spence Petros caught a 50-incher on a Bucher Mag Tinsel.

Other muskies measuring over 45 inches were caught by: Petros, 49 and 47 inches on Bucher Mag Tinsels; instructor Kevin Schmidt, 47 and 46 inches, both on Mepps H210s; John Mich of South Elgin, Illinois, 47 inches on a Double Cowgirl; Saric, 47 inches on a Double Cowgirl; Dave Huston of Swisher, Iowa, 46 inches on a Mepps H210; Sandy, 46, 45 and 45 inches on homemade bucktails; Mike Milz of Eau Claire, Wisconsin, 45 1/2 inches on a Double Cowgirl; Eddie O’Neill of Dwight, Illinois, 45 1/2 inches on a Double Cowgirl; Heiting, 45 1/2 inches on a Mepps H210; Tom Kersten of Hayward, Wisconsin, 45 inches on a Double Cowgirl; and Mark Moeller of Buffalo, Minnesota, 45 inches on a Double Cowgirl.

Students who caught their biggest muskies ever at the school included Nicolaas Botha of Ear Falls, Ontario, 43 1/2 inches on a Double Cowgirl, and Mike Redmond of Monee, Illinois, 40 inches on a Double Cowgirl.

Saric and Heiting acknowledged the efforts of the staff of Sandy’s Blackhawk Island. “The muskies might prove challenging, but we never have to worry about the resort,” said Saric. “The food and accommodations are outstanding, and Bill and Cindy Sandy, and their family, are very helpful and friendly. This is a great resort to visit anytime.”

The University of Esox will return to Sandy’s Blackhawk Island in July 2012 for its next Canada Musky Adventure. Watch Musky Hunter for details.

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