Originally Posted by jb_wi
Great story. I had a very similar story from my childhood. My immediate family (3 people) were in one boat (A 18' Lund Tyee) and I was in a small aluminum tiller resort boat with a guide and my grandpa. This was probably like the year 1998 if I had to guess, on Lac Seul as well.
Anyways, we did a 21 mile run (~42 miles round trip) from Goose Bay Camp to Mackenzie Bay and a storm rolled in the late in the afternoon. It went from a calm day with two of us catching our personal bests and limiting out... to 3 to 3.5' waves in just a few minutes. A rough ride back. Midway through the ride back (probably as we exited Mackenzie, but before Steamboat), it was decided that my grandpa and I should get in the Lund, leaving the guide alone in his boat. We made it back, but it was an experience that we will never forget. There is a reason that lake is called Lac Seul, or "Lake Alone". If you go out there without the proper equipment and foresight, you'll be left stranded alone ashore.
It was that day I became a real fisherman. Never at any point were we in danger, the Tyee was pretty much adequate and being truly tested. It was a rough ride back though, very little space between the waves and we didn't have trim tabs. My sister was crying, but I remember it being a fun experience. Overall though, because of that experience, my Dad immediately sold that boat and bought a Lund 2150 Baron, the biggest Lund they make, and still owns it to this day.
I look forward to planning an annual trip there again and crushing those tea colored lac seul rollers with my future 20' boat (narrowed down to ZV20, 620, or 206).
The number one most important thing to do when navigating big water is pay attention to the weather radar. In 2020, everyone who owns a smartphone can download a weather app (e.g. MyRadar is free, otherwise RadarScope is the best paid one) which will allow you to know exactly what kind of weather possibilities are in store for the day. Check the app periodically throughout the day. The act of neglecting to do this simple check has literally KILLED people. If you're reading this, download either of those apps (or equivalent) right now and get used to using it.