February 27, 2006
photo by Christopher Morey
Christopher Morey writes:
This is a Lake Trout. The picture was taken October 3rd, 2005 while freediving along the outside breakwall of Clinch Marina in Grand Traverse Bay at about 25-30 feet depth. I’d been seeing these fish for about a two weeks when I finally figured out how to approach them.
The trick is to first know when they are hunting in a particular area. The breakwall provided good cover so I would wait back in the rocks on the surface until I saw the school swim by. If all the fish were more or less together then I would wait until well after they passed, breath up and head for the bottom to await their return. If the school was more diffuse I’d make my dive after the lead individuals passed and wait for the rest of the school. If they saw me dive, make abrupt movements of any kind or if I appeared to be heading toward them at all they would spook and avoid the immediate area for long periods of time.
Sometimes, as I waited on the bottom, the Trout would swim around behind me in the rocks and, if I was able to turn with them but remain very still, I could get some fairly close shots. Most were taken toward the end of a very long breathhold.
You can read a great feature on Christopher and his daughter in the Traverse City Record-Eagle and see a whole bunch more pictures of taken while freediving along the Clinch Marina in Grand Traverse Bay and in Lake Michigan south of Pyramid Point in the Sleeping Bear National Park in his Great Lakes Freediving photo gallery.