Guests - If You want access to member only forums on HSO. You will gain access only when you sign-in or Sign-Up on HotSpotOutdoors.

It's easy - LOOK UPPER right menu.

Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
cbrooks

eater size northerns

38 posts in this topic

Doesn't matter what species I'm fishing, I seem to catch at least a few pike. Which is a good thing other wise I would be getting skunk alot of the time. I've never keep the pike I caught and I was thinking of giving them a try for the frying pan. What is a good length for eaters 18 to 24 inches? Should I pickle them? At what size would you consider to big to keep (the ones with trophy potetial)?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

people normally pickle them... because then the bones get soft and you don't have to really worry about deboning a northern.. seeing as they are quite the pain in the a$$ to debone...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

20 to 24 are good eating, one thing you may want to look at also is the color of the fins, the yellow fins have a yellowish meat that I don't find as desirable as the red finned fish that have a more clear and pinkish meat that you'll never be able to tell the difference between in a pile of eye fillets, the Y bones take some practice but its nothing once you get it down.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah 20-24 is a good range. Smaller than that there really isn't a whole lot of meat and larger than that they would be getting fishy. Plus every lake has plenty of fish in that size range, not many lakes have plenty of fish larger than that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I prefer 4-6 lb'ers for filleting as you get nicer sized fillets and it only takes a fish or 2 to feed the family, pickle the 2-4 lb'ers, and let the larger ones swim. I would say eat or release standards vary by lake as some lakes are full of 24" fish and others that receive lighter fishing pressure will have high numbers of larger fish.

Steve

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Muskiefool,

Do you know if the fin colors vary by lake or are multiple subspecies present in some lakes? Some of the lakes I fish also have pike with green fins as well. I was just looking at some pictures and noticed most of the fish I caught were either green or red fins.

Steve

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've never noticed the meat color or should I say make the connection between the meat color and the fin color, that's a pretty good observation. I've also noticed that the yellower colored meat wasn't as tastey as the pinker/whiter fillets.

I tend to keep northerns in the 3-5 pound range for eating. I've been eating them since I was a kid.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

last year I had some with those yellower fins and I got this when I filleted them : anybody know what causes this? hopefully this isnt in violation of the picture posting rules but i don't know how to describe it

073.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i don't think it's a disease, i'm thinking something from the liver or something in its diet that causes a yellow stain? It only showed up once I cut it open, didn't show yellow on the outside

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That is what happens when you cut into the internal organs. I think the kidney or gallbladder. not sure. be sure to clean the fillet right away as it is not very good tasting.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was told about the fins and difference in quality of meat by an old timer about 6-7 years ago, Ive seen both come from the same lake and even on the same spot.

I theorized it came from Crayfish but thats just a hunch.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thats a good point. I never paid much attention to the fins before but will do so going forward. It would be interesting to know if it is diet/other living factor related or if they are separate subspecies like the difference between a redfin and siskiwit laker.

Steve

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I only keep a few to eat each year, mostly through the ice and generaly 3-8 pounders. Summertime we keep anything over 33" and donate to the local Taxidermy school. Anythting 40 or better goes on our walls grin

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There's nothing I hate more than pickled fish. GROSS.

Scandinavian food is weird.

That said, pike that are caught, filleted, and fried the same day are fantastic. I never keep ones over 24 inches.

Pan fried, batter/breaded, with whatever seasonings you happen to like is the way to go.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you really mean you kill all the pike you catch over 33, I hope you stay in Iowa. Or perhaps I misunderstood.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If I keep them, it's 24" or less for three reasons:

-under 24" are so common anyway

-not very tasty when larger than this

-at mid 20's" they can start to eat the larger prey and have a chance for trophy size someday

Keep waiting for that 42" plus fish. Would love to get a replica mount done someday if I ever get the chance.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No we don't kill them all but mount worthy ones go to the school for the class to learn on. 40+ though will go on my wall, and the next 8 pound + silver to. We donate 6-10 a year rest go back.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There's nothing I hate more than pickled fish. GROSS.

Scandinavian food is weird.

That said, pike that are caught, filleted, and fried the same day are fantastic. I never keep ones over 24 inches.

Pan fried, batter/breaded, with whatever seasonings you happen to like is the way to go.

i agree... pickled food is disgusting.. im polish.. and my mother loves pickled herring.. YUCK

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I like to keep them from 20 - 24 inches. Anything bigger goes back. They taste great in a good beer batter.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm Prussian and pickled herring or pickled pike is top shelf stuff around here...mmmm good.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm Prussian and pickled herring or pickled pike is top shelf stuff around here...mmmm good.

Prussian.. Polish.. almost one in the same...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Prussian.. Polish.. almost one in the same...

Great gramps just rolled in his grave. shockedgrin

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This almost calls for a favorite pickling recipe post, there is nothing better than pickled fish and a few crackers if done correctly !!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0



  • Posts

    •     I have ordered a couple of time from them. They have some good panfish tackle. My order this time was $75 due to the fact that friends and family also wanted some jigs. When you out fish them 2 days in a row they take notice 
    • Like Papa Bear said, unless you have 14' sheets you will have more seams.  Not only will you have to deal with the vertical seams on the studs but you will also have to deal with the horizontal seams.  More seams = more money and more chance for a leak.  VHB tape is not cheap so the less you have to buy the better. 
    • 44 IN THE BOAT HERE ON HIDDEN BAY. One thing you always can count on here at Lake Iwanttobethere is that after a lousy day there will be a nice day. Warmer, party cloudy skies and it is warm where I sit at my desk here in the den. The brown dog is at my feet, his paws on my right foot keeping tabs on me. Yesterday was a rain day and normally I look forward to rain days as they give me time to catch up on indoor projects. Rain days in the dead of winter however do nothing more then create work. Ground is frozen so all we have is runoff which here in the cabin means a wet floor in the basement. Overnight the water freezes and now we quickly go through the ice melt trying to get rid of the ice so it is safe to walk on the sidewalks.   Ranger Rick is reporting that his trail system at Samantha Lake is a mess. The rain and warm weather has eaten away at his trails. The short cut across Samantha Lake is not recommend to use as their is water on the ice and getting on and off the lake is unsafe at best. No fishermen on the lake yesterday but then again it rained more then a half an inch. Big hockey game on tonight the Wild against the Black Hawks. We will see if putting the seventy inch TV in will draw a beer drinking crowd. I would love to be there but have been under the weather the past few days and will be watching from home.   I have gotten a few e-mail’s asking about Lake Iwanttobethere and it is a good time to be a little more clear about the Lake. The wife has never had her named mentioned in the eleven years I have been writing about the lake. She told me she did not want anyone to know her name so she is always refereed to as "The Wife" of my four kids only the boys names have been used as they own business in town, the daughters have never had their names mentioned except the one who paints is sometimes spoken about as at Christmas she paints store front windows. None of the eight grand kids names have been mentioned but they are often refereed to a granddaughter number two or grandson number three. The two ten year olds are spoken about often and are refereed to as "The Tenners"   Almost every one in town is based on someone I know. A few of them have passed on but I still write about them, kind of my tribute to them. I could still be writing about my old dogs Bud and Barney as they left me with a ton of stories untold but I shared my loss with you over them and have moved on. Now I leave it up to you how much the Lodge and Resort are. One of you called the Resort a bar and it is far more then that. The Lodge is a place for members to hang their hats. There are lockers in the basement for their stuff and a chair in the Main Room to sit and be left alone. Not everyone drinks, for example everyday Tom sits at the end of the bar with a cup of coffee every morning and does his crossword puzzle. I never mention him much because that is just what he does. The FELLOWS on the other hand seem to be doing something all the time that you may find interesting. The Resort is a place for the guys to get away from the Lodge if that makes any sense.   The Resort has become like our Lake Iwanttobethere old guys home. Marv, Elmer, DOC and Vic are the core and none of them are married and they are doing just fine thank you. Chuck, Hammering Hank, Skinny and I are the next wave, the in betweeners so to speak. Married but still looking for a hideaway. Where is Lake Iwanttobethere? I’ll save that for another day.
    • Season has been over for awhile but now I have a couple of Grouse who just strut in my back yard taunting me. Duncan has tried to put the fear into them but no matter how quick he is they are up in the trees before he can get halfway across the yard. He does come back with that stupid lab look on his face so I guess everyone is enjoying themselves here late in the winter. I hope to hear them drumming this spring.
    • cool!!  and thanks again for the info!!  i look forward to getting it.
    •  Used to, then he lost it to Vince and Nick Cage in a Segway race on Tropicana.
    • Your going to like it. Definitely not "the best", but still definitely worth the money. Mine came slight damaged... one of the flanges where the leg attaches to the barrel was bent slightly. It was easily fixed but I decided to contact RK about it... They said to send them pictures, and within 2 days I had a phone call offering either a full exchange or $100 credit to my card. I gladly took the credit. I fired it up around Xmas time in 15-20 degree weather. I was worried how it would do in the cold. It handled it like a champ and only took about 15 min longer to smoke an entire pork loin.
    • Unless you have a source for 14' sheets you would end up with vertical and horizontal seams. No real problem with that, that I can think of. 
    • Speaking of automation     http://www.cnn.com/2016/12/01/health/robot-sex-future-technosexuality/   Ok, which one of you fellas has one    
  • Our Sponsors