Thursday, May 23, 2013
Along with feeding more better, most fish are more apt to take topwater lures early in the morning, Their surface feeding behavior, in addition to offering big fun, provides locational clues that can help you pattern the fish later in the morning, after the fishing becomes more challenging. Of course, if you're fishing public waterways with significant pleasure boating activity, getting out early helps you beat the skiers to the water. And as summer progresses, it helps you beat the heat of the day and be more comfortable.
Stepping beyond the practical, it's simply nice being on the water when while the fog lingers, the sun hang slow and the frogs, bugs and birds trade choruses.
Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Of course, I guess the ice writing isn't really that odd. In northern Minnesota, where I enjoy some of my ice adventures, some lakes have only been open for a week or two! And I know I have a couple of friends up north who are already mourning the melting of the ice and looking forward to next season!
Tuesday, May 21, 2013
What's extra cool, though, (and I mean that both literally and figuratively) is that Duluth Trading Company embeds microscopic pieces of jade in the fabric, which somehow cools the whole garment and consequently your skin. I can't claim that I fully understand the technology, but I've tried it out and can tell you that it works and that I'll definitely be reaching for Armachillo clothes when I'm going to be fishing in the summer heat.
The Armachillo clothes collection, which apparently was field tested last summer in the oil fields of Texas, includes shirts in button-down, polo and tee-shirt styles, cargo pants and shorts and even sun-protective hats of a few different styles.
I'm no clothes junkies and don't normally give tremendous thought to what I wear. I realize, though, that fishing clothes are tools of sorts, and that dry rain gear, warm winter wear and cool summer clothes truly make fishing trips more fun and can even help you catch more fish because you are comfortable and better able to concentrate on fishing patterns and execution.
Sunday, May 19, 2013
Nathaniel Asher and I did manage a few fish (one apiece, actually). Mine was a bluegill, and it actually came from the house pond, where we picked up a canoe for Nathaniel to use. Nathaniel and Asher each caught one bass from the beaver pond. I had several surface hits on a Rebel Bighopper, but they seemed to be from bream that were a little too small to fully engulf the bait.
A week or so ago Nathaniel and I fished the house pond for bluegills and the bite was really good, with the fish all over little grubs. I might need to slip back out there with Asher one day vary soon so that he can experience some of the same.
Friday, May 17, 2013
I understood the young bread throwers' fascination. I had no offerings of my own, but I war right there with them enjoying the show. Nothing contains the thousands of carp that congregate around the Spillway at Pennsylvania's Pymatuning State Park. This living simply is good, as it has been for decades because of a longstanding tradition of feeding the fish, so the fish have no reason to go anywhere else.
I'd heard about the carp and had been told several times that I really needed to see them. Apparently only the Liberty Bell attracts more visitors in a year in Pennsylvania. Still, I had no comprehension how cool it really could be to watch a mass of rubber-lipped armor-sided fish begging for bread like spoiled house pets. I shot a couple of video clips, which I'll find the best of and post later, but you really have to see it yourself, so if you're ever anywhere near the Pennsylvania/Ohio border...
Of course, Pymatuning is a beautiful park with cabins and plentiful campsites and the fishing is outstanding, so you don't have to travel there just for the carp. Just don't leave the carp out of the plan when you are in the neighborhood!
Thursday, May 16, 2013
A hard front that brought two days of mid-May snow and a sharp drop in water temperatures definitely had an adverse effect on the bite while I was in Western Pennsylvania. Even so, I caught seven different species of fish in 2 1/2 days on the water, and several members of the group I was with caught that many kinds of fish or more. The diversity and quality of the fisheries at Pymatuning, Conneaut and Shenango River lakes just astounds me.
Fish catch aside, the three lakes are all very different from one another in character, and I enjoyed time in the boat on all three and in a cabin on the banks of Pymatuning Lake at night.
Folks from our group fished a big variety of ways to find success. My most productive lures by far were a Road Runner Natural Science head matched with a Bobby Garland Stroll'R or a tiny Skippy Fish and a Road Runner Pro Marabou 2.0. Both vertical and horizontal presentations produced a good share of my catch.
Of course when I get home I'll have to pull out the 2013 catch list to do a bit of updating. I believe three of the species I caught this week will add to this year's tally.
Tuesday, May 14, 2013
Lots of grumbling today -- both about the wintery mid-May weather and about the slow bite. I gotta say, though, that I've spent some pretty long days on various legendary fishing waters and caught 10 less fish than I caught today, and no grumbles about the bite came from my mouth. I had a wonderful time fishing and learned a great deal from anglers Jim Hall and Ernie Pate.
Of course, the variety that Pymatuning produces continues to amaze me. We brought five different species of fish into the boat I was in this morning, despite an unusually slow bite, and one boat in our group reported seven species from the same morning shift.
I also enjoy the character of Pymatuning and the opportunity to cast to plentiful visible cover.
Tomorrow I leave shallow and stained water behind to fish the deep clear waters of Conneaut Lake, which is nothing like Pymatuning, despite being only about 15 miles from here. Primary targets are smallmouth bass and bluegill, but we'll see what wants to bite!