I’m embarrassed that it has been 6 month since I went on this trip, and am only now posting the video of photos and a quick review. I did post my Shore Lunch video earlier, but it’s time to give the review!
There were six of us on this trip, 4 who had been there before, and two guys on their first ever Fly In Trip! Having been to Hilmer 2 years earlier, we felt really comfortable with both the facilities and the lake. None of the lakes with Hearst Air appear to be too difficult to navigate, but the previous experience allowed us the confidence to know where to go to ensure we could at least have shore lunch. This time we when about 6 weeks earlier (we arrived last weekend in June), and after a very cold winter with a late spring. When we arrived at the lake we noticed right away that the water was probably 1-2 feet higher than when we were here previously, and it didn’t take long to notice the weed growth was way down.
You can read my review of my previous trip to Hilmer to get the full run down on Hilmer and Hearst Air. I’ll highlight the main differences on this trip.
- The water was higher, and colder given the earlier time of year and the late spring.
- The walleye bite was out of this world. On the fist day we caught almost as many walleye than we did in the whole trip the previous time, and that is a lot of walleye.
- The walleye were aggressive. Last time we caught them almost exclusively jigging, this time we caught as many or more casting and trolling crank baits, and running worm harnesses just above weed tips.
- The big walleye came out to play. We caught at 28in, 26, 24, 23.5 etc. The previous year out biggest was 21inch.
- The average size of the walleye was up. We like to eat fish in the 16in range, and sometimes it was tough to get them that small!
- The pike bite was way off. The previous year we each caught at least 1 fish over 30 inches, and this year I think we caught 2. We caught a tonne of pike, but mostly the little hammer handles that you hope grow up to be big one day.
- We used the whole lake. Last time we rotated to our preferred hot spots, this year, we fished much more of the lake and had great success by adding way more hot spots!
- The bugs were as vicious as ever.
That’s all for now, happy to answer any questions, and please enjoy this short video of some photos from the trip!