I have been chasing these toothy fish for around six years now and up until three years ago, I hadn’t caught any. It just all clicked one outing and now I consistently catch pike on the fly. A week prior to this trip with my boys, I had caught around ten, up to 25 inches, which is a great fight on the fly, but I am looking for the big ones. In 2010 I decided I was going to spend every weekend looking for the these toothy fish and it paid off.
My boys are always up for an adventure with me and this was no exception. After breakfast we headed for northern pike. The weather wasn’t perfect for fly fishing, let alone with two little boys, but we headed any ways. Keep in mind, my boys were seven and ten as they were fly fishing for northern pike with big flies. Yes, I was brave, but these kids can fish.
I won’t lie, the fishing sucked! We tried to cast and cast and cast. On one of my retrieves there was a big swirl on my fly but the fish missed it. As I retrieved it back to the boat I let it hang just by the boat, while the three of us were looking at the fly a pike ate it! The fish taped out at 31 inches! A great fish on the fly and not a wasted trip.
Well, we hit one more spot and the wind had really picked up. My oldest had put his rod away and I was reeling up mine, when all chaos breaks loose. Out of the corner of my eye I see an explosion in the water and my youngest yells, FISH ON! So picture this, a seven year old kid with a six weight rod, which is extremely light for pike and a fish on that was almost three feet long! I don’t know how many times he had the fish almost to the boat and it would run out again. I really didn’t think he would land it. At one point he wanted me to fight it and I told him it was his fish and his fight. Well at age seven he landed a 31 inch northern pike and created a memory of a lifetime.
I am no advocate for the illegal stocking of northern pike around the state of Maine but there are places that these fish have been for a long time and I think it is a shame not to take advantage of a great fishing opportunity. No matter how you feel about them, they are a great game fish on the fly.