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Nathan Petersen (left) smiles proudly next to his nice Long Lake walleye. Mick Petersen, Nathan's dad, shows off the fish he caught at the same time, a double-catch, though quite a bit smaller. (Jason Durham / For the Enterprise)

Let Spiderman's powers guide the rod

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outdoors Park Rapids,Minnesota 56470
Park Rapids Enterprise
Let Spiderman's powers guide the rod
Park Rapids Minnesota PO Box 111 56470

We've all had a fishing trip or two where things simply didn't seem to go the right way. Maybe some equipment malfunctioned or way too many fish escaped from the hook before making it over the gunnel.


On the other hand, we've all had trips where things went exactly the way they're supposed to or even better which was the case two weeks ago.

I entertained three adults and a teenager on a guide trip, which included Mick Peterson and his 16-year-old son, Nathan.

Their family travels to Park Rapids from Davis, California to spend a few weeks in a Long Lake cabin built in the late 1930s by Mick's wife Pam's grandparents.

The family boarded the boat, Nathan toting his favorite fishing rod along, a Spiderman spincast combo.

Last year Nathan caught the first walleye of the trip and lost a beauty next to the boat when another angler's line hooked his, pulling Nathan's hook from the fish's mouth.

This year things weren't looking good for Nathan. Even though he had landed the first fish and biggest fish, not to mention plenty of others in between, along with everyone else on board, he had yet to catch a walleye and time was running short.

Nathan headed to the bow of the boat for a break and I sat in the stern and checked our bait supply. As I looked down I noticed Nathan's rod lying neatly against the side of the boat, with Spiderman staring back at me, shooting his sticky web from his wrist. I imagined possessing that superpower but instead shoot fishing line from my wrists to cast. If the super-hero acquired his powers from the bite of a spider, then I must need to be bitten by a fish, which has happened enough times to realize my dream won't come true.

Nathan's line was still in the water too, so I picked it up to check his bait, surmising that a bluegill or perch had nabbed half of his crawler.

As I gently lifted the rod, I felt something on the other end. "Nathan, I think you've got a bluegill on, hurry up and get back here," I advised.

Nathan returned, grabbed his rod and started to reel. And just as he had done with every bass, bluegill, rockbass and perch, Nathan laughed and laughed throughout the entire battle. As the fish came to the side of the boat, we saw it was no bluegill, but a beautiful 4 pound walleye.

Everyone was on the edge of their seats as the fish dove, then Nathan battled it back to the surface and it dove again. The third time Nathan brought it to the surface, I tried to scoop it up with the net but I hit Nathan's line.

And miraculously the fish stayed on! The boat erupted when the walleye came aboard.

The next day I bought several Spiderman spincast combos. Both luck and superpowers are always welcome on my boat!