Notes from Northern Manitoba Pt. 2

The marauding pike of Northern Manitoba enjoy a diet of vertebrates–meaning terrestrials such as lemmings and waterfowl; basically anything aquatic they can fit in their toothy pie holes, including other pike.

Yet even these marauding cannibals can go off the bite. When that happens, it’s time to deploy the most insidious rodent pattern ever created: Jeff Hickman’s Mr. Hankey. Originally designed for large Alaskan rainbows, Hankey has gone on a world tour. Fishing Mr. Hankey isn’t like casting a normal pike bug.

The fly’s designer recommends a full sensory delivery: “In lakes, or slack water, you can strip him, but do it fast. Making high pitched mouse sounds and talking as though you’re the mouse frantically swimming in the water, also helps.”

Being tethered to a wire leader in pike water seems to have the interesting effect of increasing Mr. Hankey’s loud and distressing “Oh No!” and “Howdy Ho!” mouse/turd vocalizations. It works. And that’s why I believe in Mr. Hankey.


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