22-foot Walleye catches plenty of attention
It’s the biggest catch Ottawa ice fishermen have ever seen, but Wally the Walleye is also luring in plenty of attention from drivers on highway 174.
The 22-foot ice fishing hut shaped like a fish sits on the ice of the Ottawa River near Petrie Island. It is the joint creation of Oziles’ Tackle Shop and the Petrie Island Ice Fishermen’s Association.
“We put him out about 9:30 p.m., last night, knowing that we’d surprise people in the morning,” says “Big Al” MacIntyre, the association’s president.
Originally crafted as a motorized float for the Orleans Parade of Lights, Wally took about two weeks to be built.
MacIntyre decided it was too good to go to waste and was then retrofitted to become a fully functional ice fishing hut with room for two people. Some features include salad bowls for eyes and home plumbing pipes that are used as skis to help move it around.
Many ice fishermen at Petrie Island have adopted Wally as their new mascot, saying he embodies the fun and spirit of the winter pastime.
“It's a big fish. And the kids will have a blast. It's a big one. I can't even touch the top,” says Gerry Veillette who plans on bringing his daughter to see the fish this weekend.
With a report from CTV’s John Hua.