Catch and Release extending into the Amish Community – Vance Kaloz
Some clients of mine for the last 6 years (yes, they are Amish), reached out to us, originally, during the Ohio Musky Show. Without hesitation, Todd and myself took them out. In general there is an assumption that the Amish, “keep everything”. That wasn’t the case at all for us.
Turns out, they have been releasing muskies all along and that goes for their entire community and family. These have been some of our most fun experiences while on charter. They are so easy and so pleasant. Example, fish hits and released right there at the boat. How easy is that for a guide? Not having to net or take the fish out of the water – and take a picture?! That’s how it has always been. They originally got the musky bug from receiving musky hunter mag and attending shows. The platforms on catch and release reach all over and it’s wonderful to see how far the industry has come!
It was July. The holiday crowd was finally dwindling. We had a beautiful day and I was on a mission after the weekend. I had our favorite Amish, musky enthusiasts, team out – Allen, Joseph and David. After some morning banter and ribbings we shot off to the spot. They proceeded to tell me a story about their relative, who punched the PA elk tag drawing, went out and shot a huge elk with a long bow he created/made. Naturally, this relative had bragging rights around their community. They even said, it brought the guide to tears because he had a feeling that it could never be done with this bow that the relative had made. So they implored that they wanted to make me cry that day. HAHAHA!
I responded, that a couple 50s would probably get the happiness tears to shed…. well all within an hour, ALLEN delivered.
He hit a fat 50″+ fish. 15 minutes later he hit a 47″ and finally capped it off with hitting another 50″+ fish. Two 50s, while casting, on the Chautauqua, both on the same day?!?! All by clients?!?!?! There were more caught that day but this day is historic for my tenure on Lake Chautauqua, specifically.
**Fun Fact”” Allen was fishing out of the back of the boat. I don’t believe in that theory however it was pretty cool and made for some great laughs.
I did not cry due to dehydration. It’s kind of hard to sip water while laughing and grinning from ear to ear all day. I also got to hold the fish and have my picture with it since that isn’t part of their religion. Pictured below are both 50s from the same day. All of the fish caught on this day were brought in the boat with our own FAT AZ 8″ Raptors. All fish were released. Blessings from Muddy Creek Fishing Guides, and we will see you at the Muskie Max this upcoming Saturday (3/5) and Sunday (3/6).
New River – Southwest Virginia High Water has dominated this week, but we are normalizing. Water temps have fallen back…
This article originally appeared in the April/May 1994 issue of Musky Hunter. To see more classic articles like this, subscribe…
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