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Caught several bows and a few pike at Stagecoach yesterday.  The weather was awesome...sunny and 30, no wind.  Lost a pole to something HUGE.  Was using a red ratso with flame red powernuggets , which I was catching all of the bows on, all were  averaging 14-15 inches.  We were fix'n to move to find some bigger fish when I heard the drag go a little and then I heard a splash...my $40 pole/reel was gone!  I use some decent pole holders which require many pounds of force to pull the pole down towards the hole.  The strange thing was, that same hole, all of the bows were biting light.  You had to be on top of your pole, ready to set or you would miss.  Whatever took my pole wanted that lure bad.  What could of it been?  A big pike on a Ratso??? ???
All the pike(total caught was three, 18-19 in. and lost a couple) were on a Tip-up, 11ft of water(1 foot off bottom) with whole, 5-7" suckers on a bare hook.

Well I am ready to eat my first pike fillet, I heard they are pretty darn good.  The meat is a off greenish, yellow color which doesn't look to appetizing but here we go.
 

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Could have been a large bow.  I know of a couple of 5 to 7 pounders that have been iced in seasons past.  Maybe a brown .   Here is my theory; a small bow just got hooked while you  were looking some place else and in the blink of an eye a record pike took the free meal along with your pole :eek:

I'm heading up there this weekend.  can't wait to get some fish on the ice
 

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Your theory sounds like the perfect fish story to me, I will stick with it. ;D
By the way, the pike meat was most excellent! Not as good as walleye but darn close.
 

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That fish might have been the 10 lb palomino trout I caught and released there last fall.
I'm going up there next weekend, thanks for the info.
Hammer
 

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I'm heading up there next weekend. friday afternoon thru sunday morning. I'm ready to slay 'em.
 

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the pike from stagecoach are great eating and all had kind of an orangish-tint when I fileted them. The reason the meat is on odd color is because the pike (smaller ones anyway) eat no fish there, only crawdads. They can go get a bunch of monstrous crawdads at any time but don't want to chase around a quick trout. I hooked a monstrous pike there this ice season on a little, itty bitty trout jig called a purist from custom jig and spins. I caught some pike up to 24.5" from there this winter, and lost the aforementioned monster. I caught many nice trout as well, and lost a large one.

BTW, we did catch pike on ratsos there so doesn't surprise me.
 

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TroutFishingBear said:
the pike from stagecoach are great eating and all had kind of an orangish-tint when I fileted them. The reason the meat is on odd color is because the pike (smaller ones anyway) eat no fish there, only crawdads. They can go get a bunch of monstrous crawdads at any time but don't want to chase around a quick trout. I hooked a monstrous pike there this ice season on a little, itty bitty trout jig called a purist from custom jig and spins. I caught some pike up to 24.5" from there this winter, and lost the aforementioned monster. I caught many nice trout as well, and lost a large one.

BTW, we did catch pike on ratsos there so doesn't surprise me.
TFB, the pike there may eat crawfish but to say they dont eat fish at all is stretching it. You cannot fight instinct if a pike is setting in the weedline and a minnow, fingerling, stocker slowly cruises by in the shallows that pike's brain is going to click and he is going to engulf or latch onto that fish. Granted they probably eat alot of crawdads there, but I guarantee that is not the only thing on their diet.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
TroutFishingBear said:
the pike from stagecoach are great eating and all had kind of an orangish-tint when I fileted them. The reason the meat is on odd color is because the pike (smaller ones anyway) eat no fish there, only crawdads. They can go get a bunch of monstrous crawdads at any time but don't want to chase around a quick trout. I hooked a monstrous pike there this ice season on a little, itty bitty trout jig called a purist from custom jig and spins. I caught some pike up to 24.5" from there this winter, and lost the aforementioned monster. I caught many nice trout as well, and lost a large one.

BTW, we did catch pike on ratsos there so doesn't surprise me.

Thats what I was thinkin, they did have crawfish in the bellies. Also had the some spawn starting to develop. Can't for springto catch some of those prespawners!!
 

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epic, I'm sure they eat fish, but probably really don't until they are of larger size, probably 30"+, to be able to eat the larger stocker trout. The trout they stocked there this fall had a mean length of like 12", a pike probably wouldn't even attempt to eat that until mid 20" range and probably wouldn't be successful until 30" or so. Any predator prefers something easy for them to get. 5" crawdads all day or work hard and almost kill myself to maybe get the chance to eat a 12" bow? 5" crawdad will take that. Every pike I've cleaned from there has had crawdads in its stomach. I have caught 0 trout with teeth marks. I have a good idea of what most of the pike eat, and I bet it is pretty accurate.
 

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I'll take TFB's word on that, he and Ice fish that lake more than anybody else I know. I don't think he's trying to say that the pike don't eat other fish, but that their primary forage is crawdads, from what they have seen.
 

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Hey troutfishingbear and others, any advice on what part of the lake to fish? We're heading up to Stagecoach the weekend after the Super Bowl and hopefully we will run into a nice pike or two. We have fished within walking distance (old, fat, out of shape walking distance) of the boat ramp on the south side and have had some mediocre results. Any other places you can suggest?
 

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i'll be up there this weekend. I think the only area with good access is the north side boat ramp area because they keep the road plowed on that side of the lake. I'll post a report on my trip after the weekend.
 

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The whole lake is fishing good. I have caught allot of fish everytime I'm out. 2 weekends ago we caught 12 between the two of us. I caught 3 pike, small though, but we landed a few nice trout. Any point is good. Morrison cove always produces. haven't hooked a big pike this Winter but there there, just hard to find. I fish a secret hump. Big fish cruise throughout the lake..
 

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I agree with steamboat. We did really good off of points. As the season gets later though, they will move back into the bays.
 
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