Tales from Cabin 14

Tales from Cabin 14

Tales From Cabin 14… and other exotic places Stories about fish, the places they live, and the characters that pursue them. Tales from Cabin 14 is not your average, or “same old-same old” collection of fishing and outdoors stories. Naturalist and philosopher, Henry David Thoreau, best summed up the theme behind the Cabin 14 stories, when he said: “Many men go fishing all of their lives without knowing that it is not the fish they are after.” While the actual “catch” is featured from time to time - and there are some pretty impressive catches - these stories focus on the places where fish congregate and the many characters I have met who have done so much to define and shape my experiences. Have you ever had the pleasure of being marooned, or come face to face with a Grizzly Bear? Well I have, and I’m sure you will find what transpired on both those occasions makes for some very interesting reading. You will meet the indomitable Uncle Harry, a character known to many as the "Map Maker," and travel with me on my very first trip into the wilds of northern Ontario, in search of fish - and French Fries. Not all of the characters featured in these stories are people. Get to know Thymallus, arcticus, the Arctic Grayling, a Pike named Peter, who I swear believed he was completely invisible. So pull up a chair and enjoy your visit to Cabin 14.

Marooned

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“For the next twelve hours we busied ourselves doing Great Bear Lake castaway stuff. We skipped stones until all of the flat ones for 3 miles in either direction were gone, burned every piece of driftwood within the same radius, got rained on, watched the huge, hungry trout thrash on the surface a few feet away, while they chased after the ciscoes, got rained on again, kept an eye open for the bear, watched the boat continue to drift further away - and waited…”
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Lost Lake

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“So where is Lost Lake and how do you get there? I forget where it is exactly, but I can tell you that if you manage to find two white fence posts, with a rusty old chain strung between them that is across the road from an old farm house - the nail holding the chain to the post on the right hand side will come out very easily, and you can then lower the chain, and take the short drive to the lake. Got it?”
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Larry the Lund

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“Dave pulled off nothing short of a miracle in keeping us from going under, but there was nothing he could do to stop the pounding that our old boat and the three of us were taking. Each time we hit the bottom of one of those deep troughs, it was like being hit in the ribs with a sledgehammer…”
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Guides

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“A first class guide must be a master seaman, chef, marriage counselor, confidant, mixologist, sommelier, meteorologist, whipping boy, tackle consultant, mechanic, ichthyologist, zoologist, expert fisherman and have x-ray vision. They must also be imbued with the patience and demeanor of a saint, because if anything- and I mean anything - goes wrong, it will be their fault…”
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JB

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“It was always a good idea to keep an eye on JB, and pay very close attention to what he would bring in on his stringer, because when it came to finding creative ways to recycle a dead catfish or the like, JB wrote the book. In his opinion they made great hot water bottles, and it was not unusual to find one tucked up under the sheets to keep your toes warm and toasty at night…”
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Breaking Twigs

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I've done my fair share of fishing over the past 50 years. Some might even say more than my fair share. Travelling in search of fish has taken me to some of the most "exotic" places throughout North America and beyond, but none perhaps more "exotic" than Great Bear Lake.So what and where is Great Bear Lake or Sahtu?
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Imagine

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Imagine a place where the only sound you will hear is the wind and that of your own voice. Imagine a place so beautiful and unspoiled, that on any given day or moment it can, and will take your breath away. Imagine drifting through a place where fish float silently just below the surface to soak up the summer sun, not noticing or caring as you pass.Imagine a place where the Dogrib and Sahtu Dene have gathered for centuries.Imagine Hottah Lake.
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Baptiste

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When Esnagami Lake Lodge in Northwestern Ontario changed hands a number of years ago, it came along with all the usual stuff, such as boats, motors, miscellaneous equipment, and one other unexpected and, as it turned out, critical asset - a very special guide by the name of Baptiste. As close as anyone could figure he was likely in his late sixties at the time, but no one really knew for sure.
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Homefries

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Walking into our kitchen one Wednesday afternoon around 3:30, after a rather uneventful day at school, my mom, who was at the sink peeling potatoes, turned to face me and uttered the words that no kid ever wants to hear. "I just spoke to both your teacher and the principal, so don't plan on going to school for the next couple of days." Before I could open my mouth - well it was probably already hanging open - to try and articulate one of several hundred questions that quickly flashed across my mind, she said,
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