Operation Michigan Tropical – day 1

Now that I’m not continually enjoying a responsible number of adult beverages and fishing I can take some time to start our recap of Indigo Guide Service’s media outing to Beaver Island, what we’ve been calling Operation Michigan Tropical. Suffice it to say we had an incredible time. Great group of guys. Great accommodations at the Beaver Island Lodge. Sure, the weather could have been more tropical. It was a hard winter and a late spring and water temps were just barely breaking 50 degrees in the open lake during the outing. We had some high winds and overcast skies, but we did catch fish, some very nice fish in fact, and I think it gave the guys a great idea of what a special fishery the Beaver Island Archipelago is.

After a decent couple days fishing in Traverse City on Tuesday and Wednesday, JP and I met up with Bill and Caleb and hit some bars in Traverse City enjoying many rounds of Grizzly Peak stouts. On the way back to the hotel we stopped at Taco Bell and ordered a pile of chalupas. A pile of chalupas and many rounds of stouts. Not the best idea. So we skated into Charlevoix to Beaver Island Boat Company to grab the ferry just in time. Unfortunately the Colorado contingent had their flight canceled. But Kirk, Will and Tim were determined to get to Beaver Island one way or another. They flew to Chicago and rented a car, getting into Traverse City on Friday morning, catching the Fresh Air Aviation charter flight, and finally getting on the Island around noon.

We immediately hit the water. Caleb, Bill and I did some driving and walking and only found 2 fish which we couldn’t get to go. With the tough conditions it’s hard to make something happen without a boat, but with only two full time guides on the island and six people up to visit, everyone had to walk in at least one day.

When Will and Tim came in with Kevin Friday evening we were happy to hear they got into a couple fish and Tim got some great photos. Kirk and JP had the best day of the trip with Steve on Friday landing 8 carp including one of the biggest of the trip and hooking and losing a few others. Both the Geezus Lizard and JP’s Mustache Ride caught fish.

Friday night we were hosted for dinner at the Beaver Island Lodge by the Beaver Island Chamber of Commerce. The food was excellent and we had a responsible number of adult beverages.

Day 2 recap tomorrow including the biggest smallmouth of the trip. One of my favorite photos from the trip is below: Tim Romano’s shot of Will while running back through three footers on Friday. One of the highlights of the trip for me was getting to hang out with two professional photographer, Bill Konway and Tim Romano, and getting at least a glimpse of how they make great images.

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