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Echo Lake

 Al Johnson was my grandpa's cousin. I fish the lake today and have since the early 70s, your right on. Says Rich sundichr

Echo lake is on the rise. My father has been going to this lake since 1970. Back then the only cabins available for rent were the spring bay cabins which are not in service but still standing to date. Now there are two resorts on the lake and a public campground. Echo lake is fabulous for jumbo bluegill and the colors of these fish
    are remarkable. Back in the late seventies when my father stayed at spring bay resort, my father caught the 13th bluegill ever reprted to be taken out of the lake. Al Johnson, owner of the resort at that time kept a notebook of any
bluegills/sunfish ever caught due to the fact that the species was not native. The first time I went to this lake was back in 2000. I casted my nightcrawler harness out and slowly reeled my bait and felt a nice tug, thinking I had a bass on I came to the surprise to have the biggest bluegill hooked I've ever caught in my life. After measuring the brilliant, blue and purple colored gill I recorded that it was 11 inches long. The fight the gill gave was that  
    of a good two pound black bass. The fish were spawning and I caught 8 more in that same bay that were all gigantic in size. The next trip to the lake was in 2007, and I still thought that maybe the gills I caught were maybe a ''fluke''
 and there cant be that many in the lake. To my surprise the lake obviously had changed and we caught a entire fish basket of jumbo gills in less than three hours. The fish were spawning again (we went the same week) and every gill even the smallest one was a jumbo gill. My father mounted one gill that was 12 in long and weighed in at just over 1.75 pounds. Not bad for a lake that 30 years ago didnt really have native panfish. Also, the crappies are gigantic.
Many people are starting to catch on to this and the populations of this fish I believe are declining. Back when my father first started fishing this lake walleyes and northern were caught in the dozens every day. But, they werent trophy fish but it was fun catching a stringer everyday. Now the lake is producing the same ''hammerhandle'' pike and ''dinner'' size walleye as the past as well as many trophies of both species. I believe the bluegills that research states accidently got into the lake are providing much more feed for this lake. But the funny thing is the gills are getting big too. So i think to my self, what is the true feeder fish? Every lake has a true feeder fish that never really gets big right? Well that fish is the perch unfortunatly. Back in the 70's the lake had jumbo perch, they were hard to find, you only caught a couple but they made anything out of lake michigan look like a minnow. I did catch one jumbo though, and even that one was on the small side of a true jumbo but there still a few ''smart ones'' left i guess you could say. Echo lake has lots of stumps,logs, boulders and such so you will get stuck. If you dont get stuck then you arent fishing the lake right. As far as that is concerned that is all the tips i will give because fishing is about skill and luck and thats all the knowledge i will give out. If you know what u are doing u can catch every species of fish with one lure. Make sure you bring plenty of them because like i said before, you will get stuck if u fish it right. In all that said i feel echo lake is on the rise as far as quality of game fish but what is your lucky lure?? Hint: classic old school lure that pretty much every fisherman that knows what he is doing carries. Oh yeah, its not a crawler harness but those work decent too! Says Jjake Krueger


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