Thursday, April 30, 2009
It was a day of junk fishing on Bluestone Lake for Joe and myself. We had hard rain early and then it slowed and eventually cleared. We never found one method or place that the fish seemed to really want so we moved around a lot and threw a little bit of everything. Spinnerbait worked the best and for the second day in a row I couldn't get a fish on a fluke. I caught one LMB that was ~ 3.5lbs and a 15 inch spot on a Strike King P+ early and we caught another 18 smaller fish. We tried bull falls but couldn't round up any fish bigger than 10inches.
Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Dad and I left Hinton at 5am and headed to Stonewall. We got to the lake around 8am. While launching the boat out of Vandalia Bay ramp I saw a 3lbs+ LMB chasing a bluegill around riprap. We fished the riprap and low end of Vandalia Bay out with flukes and spinner baits. I caught my best and only solid keeper fish of the day quickly at 8:30am on a Strike King P+ spinnerbait. It was a 19 inch LMB caught off some grass clusters in less than a foot of water. I saw the fish come up and grab the spinnerbait and she hit hard. We then fished the main coves around Vandialia with out much results. Dad caught a walleye about 15 inches long oddly enough on a spinnerbait in 25 foot of water. I caught a crappie and later 2 smaller bass on a dropshot shad shaped worm and one more on the same spinnerbait. We fished Glady fork, Skin Creek, and around the state park riprap. We caught some smaller bass off the riprap around the park off of pointers but other than that it was a pretty slow bite. The water was 65 degrees and it stayed calm and overcast all day, ideal fishing conditions. We fished until 5pm and ended up boating 16 total fish including the 1st LMB, several other non-keeper LMB's, 3 crappies, 2 bluegills, and a walleye. The lake looked great and the fishing pressure was near zero but the fish seemed to be in a negative mood. With the water around 65 to 68 degrees they may be thinking about spawning and just be a little harder to capture right now. I have only fished Stonewall twice so I really havn't found any hotspots or places I have some confidence in. On our way back to the launch ramp we saw the world's largest pontoon boat in front of the lodge, I'm thinking about selling my boat and buying this one so I can take 250 of my closest friends fishing, at the same time.
Sunday, April 26, 2009
Joe and I decided to give the Greenbrier River a go on a warm April Saturday morning. The sun was out, there was no wind, and the water was high and fairly clear. But despite fishing fast, slow, tubes, cranks, G-tails, in line spinners, spinnerbaits, we couldn't buy a fish. We fished from the big rock to Tug creek and only caught 9 fish between 7am and 12pm. Of the fish we did catch they were all tiny. It seems the river at least for us just hasn't completely fired up yet. We had a good time trying anyway though.
Friday, April 24, 2009
We went back to Grassy and fished the entire lower creek arm out. We were running to every cove on the GPS that didn't already have a boat in it. We fished all the way down to the low water bridge at Jonathon's creek in North Carolina. By now the weekend boaters and tournament prefishing was really picking up. The peace of mid-week was starting to erode away even though it was only Thursday. We started out in bibs, sweat shirts, along with coats and ended up in flip flops, shorts, while getting sunburned. The wind was still strong but not as strong as the the day before. We fished from 7am until 5pm. From daylight until noon Greg and I caught 20 bass and from 12pm until 5pm we caught 10 more, but we each caught a bigger fish around 3lbs. It was a pretty good day. Ball and Todd ended up catching 15 or so before heading in around 2pm. The sun really put a hurting on us that day. I went out that evening with Brian and Todd on Bluestone creek for a couple of hours and we couldn't buy a bite. Todd caught a white bass and a crappie and Brain caught a white bass. I got one bite, missed it and I don't think it was a bass.
I don't know if I will ever go back to Buggs Island but if I do I will stock up spinnerbaits beforehand, all the tackle shops down there were about sold out. I also won't take as many poles, 3 or 4 will work but I really don't need 10 poles. As far as which week you should go it's really a crappshoot. The best thing would be to read the message boards, look at the extended forecast and pick a week around the 1st of April. It's a big lake that gets some big pressure on the weekends especially and it has a lot of really quality fish. The average fish is 1 to 2 lbs. but it's not easy fishing. You have to really work for them and it can be down right tough fishing.
We didn't feel like playing hide and go seek with the fish on some creek arm that we had yet to fish, so we all headed back to Grassy Creek. By now the word was out that the fish were moving up on Grassy and the boat pressure was starting to ramp up. We fished from 7am until 4pm in 20 to 30 mph winds. The only thing that saved us was that we figured out if you fish the coves that face north you get a wind break. We ran almost into North Carolina from Grassy creek hitting coves that faced north. The main creek arm was pretty rough but the coves with wind break weren't bad. I used the GPS on my Humminbird to find coves on down the lake that had the right layout. The bite was descent all on spinnerbaits and flukes. I tried a soft swim bait but just don't have confidence in it yet. I did start to really like the YUM Houdini shad in 5 inch with a 5/0 skip gap hook. Also tried the parasite clips with mixed results. My flukes still ran up my line some but not as bad on strikes. The skip gap hook seemed to do about as well and they kept the fluke running straight. Greg caught 14 fish, I caught 11 bass + 2 crappies, while Brian and Todd combined for 22 total bass. I caught 2 good sized bass and Greg caught 1 below the hotel that evening. Just like deer camp there's always some deer hanging around camp, always.
We headed out to Rudd Creek to see if our pattern was solid enough to travel. We had the dreaded blue bird skies with no wind that seems give largemough lock jaw at Buggs Island. It was some tough fishing. I caught a couple keepers on a spinnerbait early but despite fishing some good places where we had caught fish before we really struggled to get bit. We fished until noon and only caught 9 fish between us. The fish on Rudd's were doing something a little differnt. Ball and Todd did a little better landing 15 fish and one really nice fish by fishing out closer to the main lake instead of creek arms.
That afternoon we went back to Grassy and started catching a few more fish, but it wasn't long before we got heavy rain and we had to go dock the boat and sit in the truck whle it moved through. Greg ended up catching 5 and I caught 7. I caught one smallmouth bass, which until then I didn't even know were in Kerr.
Greg and I headed out from the hotel at 6am. We faced heavy rain early, then scorching sun, followed by high wind, and then more rain. We fished until 4pm before all the exposure to the elements sent us packing. The bite was good though and we started to find a pattern. The fish weren't super shallow in the backs of coves and they weren't on points out deep, but they were on buck brush and other cover in shallow coves about half way back. They were hitting flukes and white spinnerbaits fished through cover. Greg caught 17 all largemouths including 2 fish in the 3 to 4 lbs. 20 inch range. I caught 18 all largemouths mostly fish between 1 and 2 lbs. Most of our fish came from close to the launch ramp, the coves around Longwood campground and the going into the Beaver Pond. Despite the rough conditions we endured, established a pattern, and caught some fish. Brian had a banner day catching 16 including one 4lbs fish while Todd had the day from hell only landing 4 fish.
Ball, Todd, Greg, and me headed out to Bluestone Creek on John H. Kerr Reservoir from the Lake Hotel at daylight. Greg and I were the first bass boat to hit the launch ramp. It was a real pretty still, slightly overcast morning. The water was 62 degrees and as always down there stained around 302 to 305 degrees. The high temps reached around 72 degrees. We fished from 6:30am till 5:00pm. We caught some on our grassy point, some off our timbered point, and some in a couple coves. It was hard to tell if the fish were moving up to spawn, spawning or had already spawned. The fish we caught besides being scattered didn't look like they had spawned or were spawning yet they were just really hard to pattern. Greg ended up catching 10 LMBs, I caught 7 bass + 1 stripper + a white bass and a bluegill. Brian and Todd had a better day fishing off of Brian's boat. They caught 26 fish total including ~ 10 stripers. Greg caught all of our fish on a white fluke, white premiere plus spinner baits, and I caught on a LC crank in fall crawl color.
Thursday, April 16, 2009
On a sunny day where the water temps went from 50 all the way up to 55 degrees on Bluestone Dad & I worked the ususal places with a lot of early luck. The fish were still sluggish on the initial hit but they fought well once hooked. We couldn't get fish to eat a jig or be enticed by the wide wobble of a crank bait. They were feeding pretty good on shad and they still liked the tight wobble of my jerkbaits. I caught 11 off of the pit bank in the 1st hour and then went on to catch 20 bass and a freakishly big shad that I accidentally snagged in the back. Of the 20 bass I caught only 3 were less than 10 inches, all the rest were 10 to 15 inches. At one point I caught 3 big spots over 14 inches on 4 casts. We also saw at least 12 huge fox squrriels and a couple deer. All in all it was a fine day.
Saturday, April 11, 2009
On a day not fit for fishing, Brad & I loaded up in his boat and went the Big Rock on the Greenbrier River. It was cloudy, windy, misting rain, with a 50 degree high. The river was clear but way up. Brad's 6 Horse engine shoved us around nicely. I caught a smallie on a Stanley Wedge spinnerbait, along with 3 other smallies on a in-line Elite Spinner baits. Brad caught a nice musky on an in-line spinner he made himself and another nice sized smallie on the same lure. His musky came from right above the mouth of Big Creek and was a hell of a fight. We only had a very small dip net and I had a hard time getting a net on him. The fish seemed to be holding very tight to cover and the lure had to be put right in their face before they would give chase. I tried jerkbaits but found no takers. I also saw another musky before Brad caught his. We fished from 8 till 12:30am before we called it a day. We totaled 5 bass and a musky.
Friday, April 10, 2009
Greg, Dad, & I took a run at Bluetone. We started at around 8am and fished until 4pm. We tried a little of every thing jerkbaits, jigs, cranks, spinner baits. Greg caught a couple on a jig and one on a spinnerbiat but other than that everything came off of jerkbaits. I caught 13 bass and 3 bluegills, all the bass were less than a pound. And Greg caught 5 bass. Dad didn't score any fish on this day. We fished through wind, rain, and falling temps. We caught some fish that were a litte better than the pics show but they weren't that great and we got lazy about taking pics. We ran to Bull Falls around one and I would have bet money that we would catch fish up there, however had I took that bet I would have lost. The water at Bull Falls was crystal clear and we never got some much as a bite or a chaser in an hour fishing. We went back to the main lake were the water was a little stained and went back to catching fish. Despite the changing weather we still boated 18 bass, even if none of them were big. All my fish came off the magic jerkbait.
After we got home about 4:30 I took Avery down to the Greenbrier river to play and fish a little. I threw a Stanley wedge quarter ounce spinner bait for about 30 minutes. I had one smallie chase it back to the bank and I caught one that was 17 inhches long and about 2.5 lbs. I took a pic with my camera but I have yet to figure out how to post it onto the web from my camera yet. It was the second biggest bass I have caught so far this year. Tommorow Brad and I are going to take his boat and fish the Greenbrier to see if we can't round up some descent sized smallies. A litte change of pace will be nice.
Monday, April 6, 2009
Dad & I caught 5 fish, 4 bass + 1 crappie, in an hour and a half of fishing before the wind picked up, rain started, and a cold front started pushing through. 2 came off the pit bank and 3 up the left side. The biggest was a 15 inch smallie. I caught mine off the magic jerkbait and Dad caught his off of a firetiger Bagley Killer B.
Thursday, April 2, 2009
Dad and I fished Bluestone on a cool overcast April day. We fished for 9 hour starting at 8am. The water was 51 degrees all day and the air temps stayed in the 50's for most of the day. I started off below the frige rock with a misty shad LC and had a hard time getting bit. For the first hour I only caught on little spotted bass. Below the fridge rock I caught none, we crossed over below Bertha and fished up. I hooked a big musky that got off, mostly because I thought I was hung and didn't get a good hookset. He was the strongest, fastest fighting fish I have ever had a hold of. But he got off in the first 10 seconds. Then the bite slowed again so I switched to this crazy purple, white, and pink color LC that I had bought out of the bargin bin at H & S sporting goods. My little pink and purple started producing big time. In the next 6 hours I caught 2 bluegills, 23 bass of mixed subspecies, and a musky. The musky was awesome. He was ~30 inches and about 6lbs. I was working that tight wobbling jerk bait that fish crave in colder water and POW! I felt a surge and set the hook, then I saw the flash. My eyes got big and I started yelling Musky at Dad. He grabbed the net up only to see that it had an old soccer ball I had picked up in it. I wrestled with the fish and while he wrestled with the soccor ball. The musky fought hard and got wrapped up in the big engine prop and off again luckily without getting off the hook. Dad put a quick net swipe on him. We took a couple pics and threw him back. We fished on for another couple hours but our day was made and it was nearly a double musky day. Greg and caught one earlier int he week and Todd had lost one a day or so later, so going into today we knew the muskies were on the prowl. Musky is one of the few species we had yet to boat in the 2 years since we had bought our boat. Dad had hooked 2 but they got off as the so often do. Of the 23 bass I caught 12 or so were good sized and the rest were small fryes.