How to fish more effectively in Island Lake’s rental boats!

by Guest Blogger: Billy the AMFisH guy

Hi fellow Island Lake fishing enthusiast’s this blog post if to help you utilize the rental boats at Island Lake more efficiently and effectively to catch more fish!

Prior to fishing in my bass boat many years ago and most recently my kayak I was fishing out of rental boats as many of you probably are and I have fished in Island Lakes rental boats several times over the years as well.  There are two options for boats at Island Lake, the standard v-hull aluminum boats that are orange and aluminum in colour and the Jon boats which are the dark green/brown boats.  When it comes to booking your boat consider things like how many people will be with you and how much gear you will be taking out for the day, as you can select from a two or three bench seated boat, which does make a huge difference with extra people and gear, so be sure to ask about this when you are reserving a boat for your fishing outing.

All of Island Lakes rental boats are equipped with two trolling motor batteries, one main battery and one spare battery which are very easy to switch out should one reach the end of it’s power. Making sure you dedicate some time to understanding how the boat works and how to switch stuff around is a must, as you do not want to be in the situation where you need to fix or adjust something quickly and be spending far too much time at the last minute, as this will create a lot of unnecessary stress. Also make sure the paddles that are in the boat are secured in an easy to grab location, should you need to use then quickly and practice using them, this way you are familiar with what you will need to do.

Another thing to consider is how each boat performs on the water, this can also make your day go a lot smoother. For example standing up in a v-hull bottom boat is not as easy as one might think, especially if you balance is not where it should be, but standing in a Jon boat that is more of a flat bottom is much easier, so be sure to match this up with your style of fishing. V-hull shaped boats have the ability to cut through waves much easier than a Jon boat can, which is a huge plus on windy days, so if you are on the lake in a Jon boat on a windy day make sure to steer the boat to more of an angle into the waves as this will allow you to push through them much easier.

When it comes to maneuvering the boats with the electric trolling motor, it is actually more efficient to have the motor on high all the time while moving around from spot to spot, as this will actually allow you to get the most out of the batteries. Using the motor on the medium to slowest setting should mainly be used to get into and out of fishing spots as quietly as possible, driving around on these setting actually stresses the motor and batteries a lot faster as everything is working that much harder to push around the same amount of weight. As many of you may or may not know there is a tilt and raise feature on the electric motors and this should be utilized as it will also help save on battery power and time being spent cleaning weeds off the prop. Asses the area you are heading into and if you see high weeds, stop and take a second to tilt or raise the motor so it is running above the weeds not through them. This one simple step can save you up to 50% of the battery life, as trying to power the motor through thick weeds burns off quite a bit of battery life.

Island Lake offers half day and full day boat rentals, best bang for your buck is the full day rental even if you end up leaving earlier than the check in time, you will avoid having to rush back quickly to meet your half day time which is not much fun when the fish are biting! Half day rentals should be booked if you are only going  to fish a 2 to 3 hours or so and not far out on the lake so you can get back in time. Half day works great for taking out friends and family that may be new to fishing and only want to fish a couple of hours and when you are taking small kids out as fishing outings with them should be kept to a couple of hours in total as well. Utilizing the full day boat rental allows you to relieve all that pressure of racing back in time, you can’t put a price on this part as I did it a few times back in the day and quickly switched to renting a boat for the entire day no matter what time I ended up leaving, knowing that clock chasing factor was not around made my fishing days go a lot smoother and stress free.

When it comes to utilizing the boats for fishing this will depend on the style of fishing you do, example if you like to head out to your spots anchor and fish while sitting down this is more than fine, as there are no real ways to utilize the boats much more with this option. If you are however a diehard angler who does not anchor in one spot, you can actually position any of the boats facing towards shore and slowly drift sideways along the many shorelines, this is if there is some wind. If no wind is present how I used to to replicate this was by quickly turning the motor on for a few seconds in a slightly angled position towards shore and open water then turning it off. What this would allow me to do was quickly generate some forward boat momentum that would take us several feet at a time while we were casting the shoreline, but by turning it off the boat speed would still allow us to cast accurately at our targets with ease. Learning to do this takes some time but once you get the hang of it, fishing on non windy days becomes quite efficient and effective this way.

By following some of the above tips you are sure to spend a lot more time fighting fish you may not have gotten to due to not utilizing a rental boat to it’s full ability, so make sure to get as familiar with the rental boats and how they work as one to another can perform differently due to age, battery power and weight.

Also note that boat #5 probably still has a lot of that good luck it brought me over the years catching big pike like this one, definitely a boat you should try out!

Hope you found some value in this blog post and that some of these tips were helpful…tight lines!

The AMFisH guy…Billy.

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