Gone fishin’ – with the whole family

Gone fishin’ – with the whole family

 

It was 1960 when Chummy Plummer first met a boy from Texas who had come up with his father to fish Great Bear Lake. That boy is now 73 years old – but this summer, just like in his childhood, he’ll be heading to the Northwest Territories to go fishing with his family.

“He’s now bringing his grandkids,” says Plummer, owner of Plummer’s Arctic Lodges. “First it was his son-in-law, and then his grandkids started coming when they were seven years old. They come every year. It’s just one of those things that gets in your blood, I guess.”

What is it about those days out on the water that draws families together –grandparents, parents and children alike?

Part of it, Plummer says, is the opportunity to spend time together without all of the outside distractions – except for fishing of course. “They’re focused on the environment. They’re away from the telephones and the rest of the hectic world,” he says.

A special kind of bonding ensues.

“We’ve had people bringing their grandfather and grandmother and bringing a couple of the grandkids, and then the grandfather passes away and the grandmother keeps bringing the kids,” Plummer says. “That’s how much they appreciate the area. We’ve had groups up there with four generations.”

 

 

An expedition tradition

On one of his first-ever fishing trips in the Northwest Territories, George Kimmel remembers his father hooking a 36-pound Lake Trout that wouldn’t go down without a fight.

His father wasn’t well, but fishing was a revitalizing experience, Kimmel says. “Dad was having heart problems at the time, but it didn’t seem to bother him when that big fish was on the line.”

Kimmel, a long-time guest of Peterson’s Point Lake Lodge, has caught huge Trout himself – a 41-pounder gave him some bragging rights around the Barrenlands lodge. Kimmel first visited the lodge with his father in 1989, and has made it a lifelong tradition. “The fishing is great and the country’s great, and the friends I’ve made and people I meet just tops it off.”

For Kimmel and his dad, their annual fishing trip to the North was about just that – the trip. “We used to drive with our boat up there from El Paso,” he says. “We’d fish around Yellowknife for a week or so and then fly in to Point Lake.”

That’s a four-day, nearly 4,500-kilometre journey – but it was always worth it. Kimmel’s father passed away a few years back, but, partly in his dad’s honour, he’s continued the pilgrimage each year to Point Lake.

Some traditions are just too good to let go, he says – so he’ll be packing up his truck and heading North again in July.

“My dad and I fished all our lives, ever since I was a kid. He enjoyed beating me fishing. And I enjoyed beating him. But,” he says with a laugh, “that didn’t happen very often.”

 

 

Making connections

With family members these days so busy with their own lives, Ken Yoder says some of the groups that head to his Hearne Lake Lodge are just looking for a chance to reconnect. He says about half the guests at the remote lodge just east of Yellowknife bring their families.

“We had a father and daughter up – she was headed to medical school and her father knew that over the next six years they weren’t going to spend a lot of time together. They came up for a week to get to know each other again,” says Yoder.

He observes that age is only a number when it comes to fishing trips – the lodge has hosted babies as well as anglers in their 80s. There are no restrictions on when guests can head out and fish, so Yoder says there’s plenty of time for groups to go for a Grayling, troll for Trout or tempt fish with a fly.

This also leaves ample time for catching up with those around you. “Times have changed,” Yoder says. “It’s pretty hard to talk to your 16-year-old when he’s got two devices in his hand. This is an opportunity to get away from the technology.”

“Up here,” he says, “if they’re out fishing in a remote area, the only communication they’re going to have is if they talk to each other.”

That’s why, for so many anglers who visit the Northwest Territories, fishing is all in the family. 

For the whole story on family fishing trips, check out angling in the Northwest Territories.  

 

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Outfitter offering sport hunts for trophy Dall's sheep, Alaska/Yukon Moose, Mountain Caribou. We ensure that every detail of the hunt is looked after in a well-organized manner, from the day the hunt is booked until the... Read more

North Star Resort

Northstar Resort is a remote fishing lodge located on Thekulthili Lake, 95 miles (152 km) northeast of Fort Smith. Operates from June - Sept. Read more

North Nahanni Naturalist Lodge

Full service lodge located on Cli Lake 72 miles (115 km) west of Fort Simpson in the Nahanni Mountain Range. Fishing, hiking, birding, wildlife viewing, cultural activities, Aurora viewing and conferences. Access... Read more

North Nahanni Naturalist Lodge

Full service lodge located on Cli Lake 72 miles (115 km) west of Fort Simpson in the Nahanni Mountain Range. Fishing, hiking, birding, wildlife viewing, cultural activities, Aurora viewing and conferences. Access... Read more

Indian Mountain Lodge

Fish for Trophy Lake Trout and Arctic Grayling at our all-inclusive lodge located in East Arm, Great Slave Lake. Fly in from Yellowknife between July and August. Read more

Grey Goose Lodge Ltd.

Welcoming and friendly with a rustic charm and all modern conveniences, Grey Goose Lodge offers a unique get-away for small groups and adventure seekers. The Grey Goose Lodge is the hub of community life and your... Read more

Drum Lake Lodge

Wilderness lodge located on the shores of Wrigley Lake. Access from Norman Wells. Read more

Dechenla Wilderness Resort

Remote naturalist'€™s lodge snuggled in the Mackenzie Mountains, in the largest mountain wilderness in North America. Located along the Canol Heritage Trail (Mile 212). Read more

Canadian Wild Wilderness Outfitters

Outstanding fly-in fishing for northern pike and lake trout. Approximately 75 minutes NE of Fort Smith on Thekulthili Lakes. Read more

Brabant Lodge

Owned and operated by Ellen and John Pollard, Brabant is a full-service sport fishing lodge located on Brabant Island in the headwaters of the Mackenzie River. Read more

Bathurst Arctic Services

Paddle our Arctic rivers! Canoe outfitting in the Central Northwest Territories and Nunavut. Burnside, Mara, Hood, Thelon, Back, Coppermine Rivers and more. One call does it all; we arrange air transport, rent canoes,... Read more

Aurora Nights Lodge

Summer and winter packages on the Taltson River. Drive out by snowmobile from Fort Resolution or fly out from Fort Smith. Tent frame accommodation. Excellent fishing, custom packages. Read more

Adventure Canada

Family owned and operated tour company specializing in Arctic expedition cruising. Read more

Arctic Ocean Tuk Tours/ Rendezvous Lake Lodge

We run a small all-inclusive lodge that can handle ten people at a time. From this lodge we organize hunting parties, wildlife tours and photography parties. Hiking, ATV, and custom designed tours are available. Explore... Read more

Taltson Big Pike Lodge

Boat tours in the wildlife-rich Slave River delta and fishing at Taltson Big Pike Lodge. Read more

Taiga Tour Company

We offer a wide range of tour packages for the adventure enthusiast and invite you to join us for a personalized experience in and around Wood Buffalo National Park. Tour packages range from 3-10 days. Read more

Taiga Tour Company

We offer a wide range of tour packages for the adventure enthusiast and invite you to join us for a personalized experience in and around Wood Buffalo National Park. Tour packages range from 3-10 days. Read more

Northwest Territories Parks

To truly experience the Northwest Territories, take your camping gear for a highway driving adventure! Long ribbons of road without traffic jams or urban clutter take you through vast landscapes with unrivaled vistas -... Read more

Northwest Territories Parks

To truly experience the Northwest Territories, take your camping gear for a highway driving adventure! Long ribbons of road without traffic jams or urban clutter take you through vast landscapes with unrivaled vistas -... Read more

Ulukhaktok Adventures Ltd.

Big game hunts since 1999. Polar bear, muskox, wolves and caribou. Hunts between 5 and 14 days. Please call for details.  Read more

Great Slave Adventures

Specializing in outdoor adventures, we offer an affordable way for those visiting the Northwest Territories capital city of Yellowknife to fish and explore Great Slave Lake.  Read more

Shehtah Adventures

Call us about our exciting year-round packages and experience the best of the Dehcho region and Denendeh. Read more

Shehtah Adventures

Call us about our exciting year-round packages and experience the best of the Dehcho region and Denendeh. Read more

Mackay Lake Lodge

Travel to the barrenlands, the Land of the Midnight Sun, home of the Aurora Borealis -- unchanged wilderness since the beginning of time. Mackay Lake Lodge is situated on a gravel esker mid-way along 160 km Mackay Lake... Read more

Liidlii Kue First Nation

Liidlii Kue First Nation provides day and evening activities, in all seasons. Aurora viewing, cross country skiing, snowmobile tours, canoeing, community tours, hiking/packpacking, kayaking, motorized boat tours, and... Read more