FISH CATCHING TRAVEL
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Preparing this gets my blood flowing. A little wind never hurt the spinnerbait fishing, and that is fine by me. It also sets up what I have been finding the last week, spinnerbait the windy point, and then slide around to the protected side and throw the topwater. The fish love setting up there and waiting on supper. And it will be interesting to try some different trailers for the swim jig. And one other bait I am going to tie on right now as I get prepared for tomorrow is the Rapala wake bait. It has real potential if I can find the right water for it.
79/65 Cloudy with scattered thunderstorms in the morning. Wind S 15-25mph. 40% chance of rain.
Today 96.08 1/30/16 96.15 (You can see it is dropping slightly, hope it does not fall to much during the spawn. Never a good thing.)
Best 6:24 am – 8:24 am
I got to the ramp at daylight and I was first, wow. So in the water the boat went, and by time I parked and made it back to the boat folks were lining up. The water temps at the ramp was 65 and at least that over much of the lake, especially in the coves, was a lot higher than that.
There were 2 plans for today and first was to catch a limit to fill out the weekend’s fish fry, and fry a couple tonight. Next was to try 2 different craw trailers on the swim jig, start using a tail on my spinnerbait, and see it I could catch a couple on the Rapala wake bait. It is a 6″ minnow bait that runs right on or below the surface. In fact, the first place 2 small ones hit it reeled over wood. Unfortunately the wind really started blowing 20mph plus and that ended that technique. The good thing it worked and should be very effective in the months to come.
Love that swim jig.
It was just a milk run. Fishing coves and any wood that came my way. They were biting when I started and biting when I quict. Just for shits and giggles I counted to see how long it would take to put a dozen in the boat, it took until 9:30. From there it was old standby places, and some new ones. One of those is a big cove with tons of timber, but way in the back it actually opens up in a nice area. There was only 1 small one in the back, but as I worked my way out I think I caught 3 or 4 on spinnerbait.
The star of the day was the swim jig hands down. Both trailers (see below) caught fish, but the bluegill/with green Berkley Havoc Craw caught a few, like 2 dozen. They were eating it. To give you a feel for how it was today, the last bank I fished around 3:00 I caught 8 and missed a couple . When you find them, then get the speed right on the jig, they will eat. It works from one end of the lake to the other, dirty water or clear, just crank it along near the bottom and be ready. Fishing braid with a 2 foot 20lb flurou leader is increasing my hook up ratio and when some of the small ones hit it close to the boat I see the go flying by my head as they go airborne. But it sure has cut down on breaking them off with the hook set.
This size is everywhere right now. Sucks t0 be these guys.
Cleaning a limit today, and one last week, is one of the few times in years I have kept that many. But hey it is legal, and I have only thrown back a couple of thousand the last 4 years. It was kind of tough to catch the barely legal to keep, the better ones went back, but it was easy to limit. There were 2 things to take away from cleaning them. First, their stomachs was flat empty, not a thing. Second, 2 were small females, and while everyone may be moving up and looking to spawn, those eggs were in no way ready. But on the other hand I saw a couple of beds, one with a small guy hoping to get lucky. And I also saw my first tilapia, so they are really going to be early. This is a funny spring, but if it keeps up we will have a long stretch of good fishing this spring.
It was a little different today. The sun was out most of the day, and as it wore on the wind got to humping making it a little tough to fish. And unless it was on the swim jig that I did not see the bite there were no big ones today The day never had a big fish feel to it. But again it is hard to complain when 30+ is the norm. It is good when they bite all day, and you catch them everywhere you try. And best of all it is cool to be able to fish lots of different baits and catch on all of them.
I got this comment from Joe in San Antonio and he took the words right out of my mouth.
Take a look at the Zoom Ultra Vibe Craw. They got great action from the claws. Dip them in Chartreuse Dip to make them stand out in all water color. I use the Green Pumpkin Or Watermelon. Usually on 20lb power pro with a small gremlin bullet shot. Finesse fishing. But they also work great on a jig or trailer. Ive had bass come out of nowhere right next to the boat and hit it. Scares the hell outta ya.
Ps. Dont use these, the claw action sucks. Unless you want a bigger profile.
Funny you would send that along. I spent an hour in Academy opening every craw looking thing in the store, after I stopped at Wal Mart and they had zip. I had already ruled out the Speed Craw, have some I got for Canada and the smallmouth wouldn’t touch them, which means they don’t work. But I opened the Zoom Ultra Vibe Craw and the flanges look good so I got a bag. (Today it was around 5 or 6 on it with a blue swim jig.) I also got a bag of the Berkley Havoc craws which have a good flange on them, so only tomorrow will tell. (They loved the Havoc today. It will be a go to until proven otherwise.) Of course I picked up some Rage Craws, just in case.
And speaking of buying tackle it is new catalog time and the Bass Pro got here a month ago, the Cabela’s Fishing Essentials a couple of weeks ago. There were a couple of baits in the Cabela’s I liked the looks of. I have been throwing the Skitter Walk for years and now they have the Rapala Skitter V which claims to walk the dog in a tighter quicker turn action. Looks good. Strike King is now selling unpainted clear crankbaits. Not sure what the real value is unless you are one of those putter around and paint stuff guys. Cabelas has a page of Whopper Ploppers. If you like topwater for bass or redfish, they are the bomb. Designed by Larry Dahlberg, probably the best overall fisherman on the planet, it has caught big fish all over the world. That time is coming this year here, and I already have mine. Plus who can resist a cool color called Monkey Butt, which put a muskie or two in the boat in Canada. In fact, the first time I threw it on Coleto I got broke off in a toilet flush, this is not a light line bait. Trust me, the bite is awesome.
The Bass Pro catalog had the Spro Rat Swimbait. I have seen that fished on TV pretty successfully, and I know it would work on Coleto spring and summer. I am still having trouble forking out $25 on a bait, but is sure looks tempting. The only other thing I found in that catalog was the Nitro Z18 bassboat, but for some reason the Boss says I can’t have that. She fell for the old bait and switch, now the $25 crankbait doesn’t look so bad.
Now it is a weather game. Time to catch some trout, so I will be waiting for a little less wind than today. I have 3 days more to fish this week so one of them should surely work out. At least the lake is always a back up plan, though it is time to see some different scenery. I have a couple of interesting Coleto reader reports to share and will get to that tomorrow. And if anyone else has something to say lets hear it. The blog is better when you participate. So keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.
Good Luck and Tight Lines