Showing posts with label perch. Show all posts
Showing posts with label perch. Show all posts

Sunday, March 4, 2018


Fishing trips are the best with some fun friends.  Before the Minnesota bass, pike, and walleye season closed on February 25th, my homie Ed drove up from Chicagoland to go ice fishing with me and Troy.  The chosen destination was Leech Lake and we were staying at Trappers Landing.

Of course I caught a small fish.  It's what I do.
The fishing was slow, but the beer and laughs were plentiful.  I made a short video of the weekend trip.  Check it out below, and don't forget to subscribe to the new channel.

MY GEAR Camera - Lens #1 - Lens #2 - Lens #3 - GoPro - Microphone - Laptop - Memory Card Case - **The above links are Amazon Associate links**

Monday, January 15, 2018


Lightfield BBQ and I were back on the ice and exploring new hard water.  I don't know what I would do without the phone app Navionics.  It's seriously the best $10 I've spent in a long long time.  Without it, I would have no idea the depth I am fishing in my raft, kayak, or when I am out ice fishing.

Is your Navionics working??
On this day, we were on the hunt for anything.  Having only caught 1 fish in our previous outing "WALLY WALLY - WHERE YA AT" we decided that we would set out with the goal of just catching fish.  Any fish.  So we targeted some shallower water.

How Swiss Cheese is made.
After popping a popping some holes and contributing to making this lake look like Swiss cheese, we set up shop, and got our flashers in the holes and were immediately marking fish.  Time to get our jigs down there and see who wants to play.

Red illumination coming from the heater is a very welcomed sight when the temperature is in the single digits.  Lights on the flashers are even more welcome, and get the adrenaline going so that you can temporarily forget about the cold.

The game of lights.
We both were making so many fish.  I literally had my face in the hole as I was watching the fish take turns swipe at my jig.  I spotted a few sizable fish with my eyeballs, but the small ones were the only willing participants.  I changed jigs a few times to bigger sizes, but still nada.

Monsters Exist.
Lightfield and I had some fun none the less, hooking up with a plethora of small perch and 2 sunnies.  Nothing worthy to keep, but still a lot better than just sitting there wonder if I was ever going to see my rod bend.

The long arm technique to make catches look bigger.

The release back into the ice hole.
This ice fishing sport is quickly growing on me, and I'm looking forward to getting out on the ice a lot more, and hopefully experiencing what it's like to hook into much bigger fish.  My first fish of the 2018 year was this 10 pound perch (pictured below).  I couldn't believe the gut on this one.  It looked as if it had eaten a bowling ball.

10 pound perch.
Some advice for all fisher-people, regardless of time of year, fly fishing, gear fishing, and ice fishing.  Don't forget to close up your tackle boxes before bumping your ass into them.  That is of course, if you're not in training to be the best at the game pick up sticks.

Gear all over the place is my favorite.
Instagram - @JUSTINCARF


Rod Holder -

**The above links are Amazon Associate links**

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Article in DNAinfo

My homie UA Dave was recently interviewed in an article for about fly fishing in Chicago.  Dave has been a great promoter of fly fishing in Chicago.  The video our friend Adam Alexander Photography shot on the Des Plains River made the article, as well.  Good to see these guys getting in some print.

Click below and you will be brought to the article.

Article By: Justin Breen
Twitter: @dnainfo_breen

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Winter Jigs

+Gramps Mel over at The Pond Stalker has been tying up some jigs to start off his tying season.  That got me inspired to get to tying up some jigs myself.  Pictured below I have 4 jigs.  I completely forgot their weights, because, I'm terrible at remembering those kinds of details.  

Now I know what you're thinking, "why don't you just look at the packages for them?"  This would be a fantastic solution, had I not tore them up and tossed them in  the garbage, and placed all of my jigs in a small Plano box.

Oh, well.

The small green ones, can easily be tossed with my 5 wt, I'm thinking.  The chartreuse jigs with the white marabou tails will need to be tossed with my ultra light spinning rod.

These are super simple to tie, and the panfish love 'em.  There's no doubt that these jigs will fool some crappie, and bluegill at a local warm water discharge this Winter...pretty much the only place around here that you know for sure you're not going to get skunked.

Small Jig Ingredients:
Body - Hareline Caddis Green Ice Dubbing
Tail - Crystal Flash

Bigger Jig Ingredients:
Body - Chartreuse Chenille 
Tail - White Marabou w/Crystal Flash

Links to the jigs The Pond Stalker tied.
1. The Hot Pink Icy
2. Stayner Duck Tail Jig

Friday, April 10, 2015

Recent Orders

I've been keeping busy at the vise the past few weeks. With the weather warming up some of my friends are getting those fishy feelings, and realizing they need to restock their boxes.

I've been keeping busy tying up marabou and bucktail jigs. All different sizes. These are great on any body of water with a spinning rod. Here are some white ones that are sure to fool some river smallies, and possibly some Lake Michigan coho, and perch.

...and per usual. I've been tying up what I think I do best. My big bass, pike, and musky flies. As the temperature warms up, I've got a few friends that are gearing up to fish the DPR for pike once they're done with the spawn. These are proven patterns and colors that work. The one below is a favorite of mine. It's prodominantly white with a slight layer of pink underneath. Looks great in the water. Also pictured with the fly is a sticker from a local bass fishing crew in Chicago - Cast Crew - They're a real cool bunch of dude that have some really great appearal ideas. 

Check 'em out at 

Got them big bass in my sights.

I hope everyone has nice weather to get outside in this weekend!

Friday, November 28, 2014

Stankx Bait Company

Here are the baits I used from Stankx Bait Company this year.

These tubes were irresistible to the smallies in the rivers up in the North Woods of Wisconsin. Hands down the best tubes you can get. Not one of the tubes in the package had an uncut skirt. Kudos for that! I will definitely be ordering more of these bad boys!

The "Mud Bugz" - I to use this as a trailer on my skirted jigs. I caught some tank largemouth bass utilizing this trailer. The color pattern is one of their custom colors - Gobi Wan. Being a star wars fan, I just had to go with it. (Sad to not see product not on their website anymore.)

The NXT LVL Swimz - these were new to me this year, and they were a fish favorite. I would rig these up with either a weightless offset hook, or a weighted one to get deeper and farther. This became one of my go to search baits when I was out with my traditional gear. The bass loved these! I even caught a few pike on them, as well. The colors on these really pop, and grab your attention.

.40 Caliber Stix in Aurora
I didn't get to use these, because, of all of the success I had with all of the other baits, and my fly gear. However, I did give a few to my friends, and they were thoroughly impressed with how slow this bait fell when rigged wacky. I'm looking forward to giving these a shot next year. I was never really good with the wacky rig technique, but that's one of my goals next summer.

All in all, I must say, that Stankx Bait Company creates some high quality plastics. There is a definitive difference, and once you get your hands on one of their products, you will immediately feel it. While I do favor and prefer fishing with my fly rod, I do still use my baitcaster and spinning rod from time to time, but I don't have as much tackle as I used to 7 or 8 years ago. I gave all of my other plastics and some lures away, because, I didn't need them, and they were just taking up space. Once I run out of my current supply of plastics, I'll definitely be ordering from Stankx Bait Company.

**Note - I have no ties or have received anything free for writing this review. I am just simply letting you know my opinion. I'm all for supporting the smaller companies who make a high quality product.

***All photos were taken from the Stankx Bait Company website.***