The MGM Fishing Trip
Bob Izumi's Real Fishing|Fall 2019
On the first Saturday of June 2020, a group of 20 extended family members will celebrate an amazing milestone. They will be participating in the 50th consecutive year of a family fishing trip begun by four founding members way back in 1971.
Carl Glatt

In 1971, the first members of the Murphy/Glatt/Murray (MGM) clan spent four-days on the Pickerel River. This river was selected because their father/grandfather was a logger on the Pickerel in the early 20th century. Subsequent years have mainly been spent on the French River and the West Arm of Lake Nipissing, with a few exceptions, and the trip is now five-days long.

In 2020, the group of fishing characters will include G and Uncle Carl (two of the original founders); Mr. Mike and Chef Mikey; Bugs; Willy (aka Yank); Brentski and his boys Charlie (New Guy), Little Luke and BBall Ben from Wolfe Island; VR Sean and just plain Sean; Liam the Swimmer; Ry (GitrDone13); Ryan (Al Dente); Fast Phil; Joel The Driller and hopefully several new additions including Troy the Terror; Pickering Ray and Colie the Goalie.

Unfortunately, two of the original members, Ed (Panfry) and Barry (Moose and Mr. Marvelous) are no longer with us as they would revel in the festivities.

As in every other year, the trip starts with a breakfast gathering at the Northway Truckstop in Guthrie, just north of Barrie. Everyone is greeted with the secret MGM handshake, which amuses and mystifies the other patrons in the restaurant. It’s quite a challenge for Mary and her staff to serve 20 people at once but they pull it off seamlessly, even when everyone orders an extra side order of sausage or bacon. Calorie counting is not a recommended practice on these trips!

Then it’s off to Lake Nipissing, via Highways 69 and 64, through Noelville and Monetville, both small French communities whose local populations are also a bit confounded by this influx of English strangers into their towns.

Arriving at Shuswap Camp, on the West Arm of Nipissing, the group are greeted by Heinz and Gerda who have been their hosts for almost 25-years and never fail to have their cabins and boats ready. They take in their “luggage” (green garbage bags filled with their oldest and most ugly stuff), and five-days’ worth of food, since all meals are cooked by the group. They also spend an hour or more getting their fishing gear ready. You would think that relining reels, etc. could be done at home but that would be too logical. Then they venture out for some late afternoon and early evening fishing.

It should be noted that the group are not expert fishermen. They have little knowledge of fancy riggings or exotic techniques. They only troll and they expect to catch their share of walleye and pike, coupled with the odd accidental smallmouth or muskie that are out of season. Catch and release is always practiced. Fishing aside, it’s really the “Group of Seven” scenery, the family camaraderie and the good-natured ribbing that makes these trips memorable.

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