I have been to Coopers’ Minipi Lodges a number of times over the years and each trip was memorable in its own way. I have caught some wonderful trout and held in my hand the biggest trout I will ever see and watched it swim away. One trip late in the year I caught some beautiful Char on their spawning run at the brook at the top of Char Cove. Fishing in wonderful places for wonderful fish is not hard to be memorable! I cannot think of a favourite trip or adventure to share, they are all special but I think the first trip to Minipi was like a gateway drug leading to an addiction to big trout on a dry fly’!
I was guiding for pheasants in the Annapolis Valley, Nova Scotia, in the late eighties when the client who was to become a friend asked me if I would like to explore Labrador the next summer with him for a company that booked anglers for different destinations. I started packing that night!
Late summer 1990 I was on a plane headed for Labrador, first stop was Coopers Minipi Lodges and the new Lodge built on Big Minipi Lake. We were in a float plane and now off to the camp! The camp was beautiful and very comfortable and we settled in and got ready for a long day.
The next morning after breakfast we loaded up the boat and departed to an unknown to us destination. It was a long trip down this massive lake and the boat had two motors to speed it up and for safety. After an hour or so we arrived at the outlet from Anne Marie and started to fish. We were soon rewarded with some beautiful speckled trout I size of which I had never seen before.
We worked our way up the river stopping to fish at great looking pools and were rewarded for our effort, I don’t believe the pools were named at the time. One pool was named and that was our destination we were to arrive at, a pool called Halfway which was halfway from Anne Marie and Minipi. We had taken a long time to complete the journey to Halfway so we ate a quick lunch and agreed not to fish on our way out. The trail was rough and disappeared at times but we arrived at our boat and started our return to camp.
Dinner was late as the cook had no water so after finding the problem and resolving it we enjoyed dinner and after relaxing in front of the fire we relived the day and got ready for the next leg of our journey the next morning.
The journey continued and we visited other Lodges but our stay at Minipi was the highlight of my part of the journey. That trip up the river was my first taste of Labrador and I have returned to relive that day many times and all have been special and have great memories but that day we caught 11 trout that weighted 66lbs
Almost three decades later I would wager that that record to me is broken every year by two anglers at Minipi but it isn’t about numbers is it!