Thursday, June 24, 2010

After Work Pond hopping

I was out in the west metro waiting in my pickup to see if I would get anymore work, when I decided to get out and walk around by a small lake that I drive by all the time but never seen to much fishing going on. I was at a park and saw thick green weeds all around making it hard for shore fishing, but i rounded the bend and found a small dock. I walked out to the end and saw some tiny young of the year sunfish darting about, then I saw something swirl in the lilly pads! I went back to the truck and got my rod, rigged it up with a jig and a yellow glow tube, and gave it a go. i was hoping it would hold some big green sunfish, since it was a shallow pond known to winterkill.
I flicked it under the dock and nailed this nice hybrid sunfish.!

No more action under the dock after that, so I turned my attention to the slop where I saw some fish movement.

And quickly nailed this chunky bluegill. not huge, but it sure has one mean looking bump on its head!

I kept working the heavy weeds and missed a couple, then was rewarded with this nice colored bull 'gill

I then got a small greenie with a big appetite, then that was it for that spot.

I wanted to get some more action somewhere, so I went north a ways and tried some other ponds I drive by from time to time. The first pond had the species I was looking for, but they were pretty small, plus there was a ton of annoying 7 inch yellow perch to contend with.

medium green

small but fat green

even small fish have good color

I found another small pond on the other side of the hill that had crystal clear water. not a sunfish to be seen, it seemed to be full of small largemouth bass and nothing else. I had a little fun with the bass and called it a night.

Monday, June 14, 2010

tubin for panfish

Tube, referring to both my boat, and my bait.I got some good action with a 2 1/2 inch red glow tube on a 1/16th ounce eye candy glow jig. the glow really called in the fish in the very murky water.Another thing that worked well was a small salmo hornet lure. The fish were shallow, and appeared to be done spawning, though there were still some bluegills on beds. I could see some of the strikes as the fish would often times come right up near the float tube, mabye curious at the noise and bright colors, but I would drop the bait down and they would nail it. I had to use bigger baits because there were a lot of 7 inch largemouth bass around that would instantly gobble anything that would fit in their mouth!

Monday, June 7, 2010

Crappiemasters on Rathbun

Me and jack hit our first Crappiemasters tourney this weekend at lake Rathbun IA, we got there thursday for practice and found a tough bite. At least for locating the bigger fish. they would bite fine if you could find them. There were tons of 7 inch "cookie cutter" crappies everywhere from 3 to 40 ft, and if you used to small of bait you would be catching one almost every cast. The water was 10 ft high from the rains in the last week flooding much of the brush around the shorelines, and the water was like a chocolate milkshake in color. You had to get your lure right in the wood to get bit by a bigger fish. Once I made a perfect cast with a big jig and gulp minnow under a slip float near a tree and it went right down. I reared into a huge slab, only my "slab" had wiskers! Yep it was a catfish, dang thing jumped two feet out of the water when hooked too! We decided on a cove to fish about 5 miles from the landing where we got a few fish up to 13 inches, and talked with others who said they got them up to 14 in the spot.
We had perfect weather for 2 days of practise, but tournament day of course, was anything but!
We waited out a thunderstorm before heading out. Then we find jacks bilge pump was not working, not good! As soon as the lightning stopped we headed to our spot and fished for mabye 15 minutes and got a couple of small fish, when a new storm came rumblin' in!
We waited on shore for quite a while til it was done and the rain started filling the boat. We then got back out and the wind started blowing bad, muddying up the water even more with huge muddy whitecaps. We fished a bit more, but it was futile, and more dark clouds were coming so we decided to cross the lake to get out of the wind. Well got about half way across and the rain really let loose! Finally we got out of the waves and we took off for the landing, er we tried to, but the boat was too full of water to get going. Ended up stopping at the nearest landing and jack got a ride back to where the truck was while I got to sit in the boat and wait.
When we got the boat out we drained it, and headed to the weigh in site to see what was going on. then the sun came out and it got nice, so we put thew boat in to fish the last two hours. We ended up getting enough fish to fill out our limit by jigging around the flooded willows not to far from the landing. They were not too big, but we were not sure, mabye everyone struggled too, so we weighed in. Soon there was a big line at the weigh in, and we found out that some teams did get some good slabs despite the weather. the winners got 7.85 for 7 fish, better than a pound average. Well it is good to know there are big fish in there, we will be back next year to try again!
Crappie masters Rathbun report

Nice day on the lake

cookie cutter dinks

my 2 pound "slab"

Jack at the weigh in with our little fishies

Huge line showed up with fish to weigh in

look at those mules!

Some nice ones were caught!

See ya next year Iowa slabs!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Big Panfish action 5/29-31

Me and jack hit some good panfish this weekend. Water temps were in the upper 60s, perfect for shallow panfish seeking, and they were not hard to find! We started off in the alex area and were getting a bite on just about every cast sight fishing plastics around docks and pencil reeds.
We got some pretty good sized crappies up to 12 inches, the sunfish were mostly small to medium. We decided to head further up north to look for bigger fish. we ended up fishing some lakes up by pelican rapids, and found nicer fish on the same patterns, though many crappies were in the thickest cover and you couldn't see them, but they couldn't see us either, I got many nice ones by using a long rod and dropping it in the holes in the reeds, watching my line, almost like ice fishing. My best bait for the weekend was a black and yellow culprit paddle tail. I got some nice ones on gulp alive minnows and plastic twister tails put fish in the boat too, mostly tightlining or sight fishing with 1/32 oz leadheads, though we did use some floats when we found pods of fussier "gills. We also caught lots of bass and rockbass, a few pike too. All fish were releases except 8 crappies for dinner.

Nice "bull" 'gill

Jack got this Mule toward the end of the last day. He saw the fish and worked it for quite a while befor it gave in and bit!

slab for me. they were like cookie cutter fish11 to 12.5 inchers all over!

bigg gill

nice seed

Bluegill beds in an Alex area lake

very red redeye!

Weird blue sunfish, very vivid blue coloring, the photo does not do it justice. Mabye a mutant or hybrid or both?

mean looking 'gill, look at that tooth!

crappie release