Friday, May 27, 2011

False Start - May 25th, 2011

Sunrise on Plum Orchard Lake

Mr. Bluegill

2 "Biscuitgills"

In and effort to catch some of the big bluegills I have been hearing about, Brad and I launched the boat at 7am at Plum Orchard Lake. Our stay on this hot day was short lived because we just couldn't catch em here. The ones we were catching were average to small sized and hard to come by at that. We managed only 4 bluegills in 2 hours. So at 9:30am we loaded the boat up and headed off back home to fish Bluestone lake the rest of the day. We had a much better time on the Stone than at the Plum. We ended up with 26 and 27 fish respectively. We caught several nice sized bluegills, a couple small bass, a crappie and even a couple shad. Brad hooked a pretty good catfish and fought it for a few minutes before it broke him off. The water on Bluestone we up and muddy so fly poles weren't in play like they usually are.  We left around 3pm by which time it was so hot that if you could have had a heat stroke. If only bluegills got to be 3 to 5 pounds they would be the ultimate game fish. They hit hard and often, love shallow water, don't spook easily, and fight with everything they 've got until the very end. Despite their relative small stature bluegills are one of my favorite fish because of the pure fishing fun they provide during the hot summer.                                                                                                                                                                          

Monday, May 23, 2011

Sunday Drive on Bluestone - May 22nd, 2011

Aleshia and I took the girls out for a  Sunday afternoon full of boat rides and bluegill fishing. We drove around on the lake, jumped some waves, caught a couple dozen bluegills and a oddball crappie. We had a  fun afternoon and enjoyed a beautiful May day by simply not taking fishing too seriously. We worked with Avery some on setting the hook and she also got a lot of practice reeling fish in. At one point Avery wanted to swim, so swim she did. At least for a little while before she got freaked out and cold and wanted back in the boat.

Dan Hale Part II - May 21st, 2011

Fished Dan Hale with Brad out of my boat from 7:30 till 2:30 today. The weather was sunny, clear skies and hot, which made for tough fishing. We caught 9 total, 6 keepers, biggest being a little over 2 lbs. Other than one fish Brad caught on a spinnerbait all of our fish came off of flukes. Flukes were the only bait I could work above the grass without it getting hung up. I tried shakey heads, spinnerbaits, and cranks quite a bit with no hits. They guy running the place said that the lake had given up some real good quality bass on spinnerbaits the week before after heavy storms when the lake got some stain. They had two pictures hanging in the office from this spring of 2 different bass that each weighed over 8 lbs.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Friday Fishing - May 20th, 2011

Fished "The Stone" from 7am till 2:30 pm. We struggled early. A week of cold front has brought the water temps back down to 60 degrees. We fished around the pits, Greg caught a perch and I caught a short fish on  a crank bait. Then the retardedly stupid happened. The trolling motor got stuck in the down position. Greg and I both tried to get the motor to come back up but the drawstring would not engage. We call William Van Dam and he drove up to the pits, hopped on the boat, flipped the emergency release we couldn't find and then told us what dummies we where. The shear joy of having new stuff that you don't know how to operate, kinda sad.  We caught some keepers on a shakey heads off of the East shore docks and fished about 2 hours up in Bluestone with only one redeye to show for it. We went back and refished the docks and picked up a couple more keepers and a short fish. All in all a pretty fun day. We caught 16 total fish and had about 8 keepers weighing around 8lbs.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Corps. Pulling Water = Bad Fishing - May 12th, 2011

Just 24 little hours after a good day on Bluestone, when you are beginning to have some hope that things are going to get better, you have a day like today. We fished the same areas as yesterday, used the same lures, and caught only about 20% the fish as yesterday. We even had a nice overcast matte of clouds to fish under until afternoon. We fished from Greg's boat. I managed only 3 bass, 2 crappie, and a bluegill. Greg did a little better but not much. The little better quality keeper fish eluded us completely today. I am not sure we even had five legit keepers. It's not just that we didn't catch as many fish, it's that we didn't see fish, get hits, or anything. In anticipation of the afternoon rain the corp. was pulling a lot of water. The lake level dropped no less than 2 feet during the time we fished today. Since our "lake" is not really a lake but more of a flooded river lacking points, cuts, coves, or any offshore structure it tends to fish more like a a river and is very sensitive to changing water conditions much like other river fisheries.

Eight Species One Lure - May 11th, 2011

  Fished the mystery that is Bluestone Lake with Greg from my boat. The water was coming up and the fish were moved up on the banks as well as I have seen on Bluestone in a very long time. We caught good numbers of fish, hooked a lot of fish, had many hits, and lost several fish as well as saw many fish up super shallow cruising. We fished from 7 till 2:30 catching over 35 total fish, 20 bass and 15 non bass species. Greg caught his bigger fish a 3/8oz. Terminator chartreuse spinnerbait.  I caught my bigger fish on a white fluke. Bigger fish being a relative term meaning a keeper bass up to about 1.5lbs. The bulk of our fish were smaller non keeper bass and non bass species (crappie, redeye, bluegill, etc.) and were captured on Brad's custom 1/4oz. in line spinners in chartreuse color. At one point in time over the course of an hour I caught eighy species of fish from one lure that Brad had made,(Spotted Bass, Largemouth, Smallmouth, Redeyed Bass, White Crappie, Black Crappie, Bluegill, and a Shad) That a pretty veristle lure when you can do that in a short period of time.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Two Rivers One Day - May 7th, 2011

  Brad and I took his boat and fished from 9am till 1pm on the New at Shanklin's Ferry. At 1 o'clock we loaded the boat and moved to the Greenbrier at Talcott and fished till 5:30. The water on both watersheds was in the mid 50's percentile and  was also fairly clear for this time of year. Our day started off slow but picked up as the day went on and the temps went up. Our main fish catching lures were in line elites spinners. I did catch one smallie on a green pumpkin g-tail, but other than that we caught 37 of our 38 fish all on spinners. We tried throwing tubes and flukes quite a bit, but had no takers. The fish we caught were small redeyes and smallmouths. I fished out deeper, slower and with bigger baits a number of times through out the day in an effort to pick up a better quality fish. Right now is strange time on the river. The cold water big fish  bite is over, but the post spawn shallow water  bite has not  fully set in. Although we did catch a good number of fish the average size was way down. Our  biggest fish was about a pound smallie.
Brad Working a New River Ledge

Mr. Turtle

New River Smallie

Greenbrier Smallie

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Dan Hale Resivoir - May 3rd, 2011

  With a strong desire to see some new waters Greg and I  headed off to fish Dan Hale Resivoir just outside Princeton, WV. Despite having heard a lot about the place I nor Greg have ever been there before. I was told it's recently under new management. They are now begining to advertise it as a trophy largemouth catch and release lake. They charge $3 a person and $5 per boat. The new managment is just beginning to stock largemouth, but have already cleanded the palce up and stocked 1600 pounds of rainbow trout including a few in the 7 pound range. We took Greg's Triton since my boat trailer light is still out. They open at 7am and close around 6pm. The lake is about 75 clear water acres with 10 coves. It fishes a little larger than 75 since it has some much structue and cover. It contains large amounds of rock, some standing timber, numberous brushpiles, many laydowns, and even and earthen riprap dam.  You cannot run a big engine since it's limited to trolling motor only. They do have a launch ramp but it's a ramp that needs some work and requires to people to lauch a boat without tearing anything up. The lake has given up an 8 and 11lbs. LMBs in recent years so there is definetly some big fish potiental and who know maybe if they work with it they could grow it into a very exciting yet not far from home fishery.
   We fished all the way around the outside edge of the lake which took about 7 hours. The heavy wind kept us from fishing it slow with shakey heads, senkos and jigs. We fished mainly spinners and cranks. And again like yesterday the fish seemed to really like Brad's smaller 1/4oz. cutomer in line Elite spinner baits fished on light flurocarbon line. We caugtht about total 25 fish. A lot of smaller non keeper bass, a hadfull of keeper sized bass, several big bluegills, and I even caught and oddball rainbow trout on a grave digger crankbait.That's the first time I can ever remember catching a trout on a baitcaster. It was a nice trout about 16 inches or so. I saw one other boat bass fishing  and several other people trout fishing from the bank. Dan Hale is an interesting change of pace and somewhere I will be back to soon. I feel like there are fish to be caught there once you figure them out. I don't know how much money there is to be made from a fee for fishing lake like this in WV but  hopefully they do stock some bass and manage it to give patrons a little better chance at catching a big LMB and make a go at it.

Spinnerbaits or Bust on Bluestone - May 2nd, 2011

   Greg and I fished out of his Triton from 7am till 2pm. The water had some considerable stain and fishing was slow at first. I picked a lone smallie off the pit bank with a LC crank, then we got 3 LMB's of the slide bank with shakey heads, before we both committed to throwing spinner baits. Greg through a larger premier plus and I threw a chartreuse 1/4 oz. in line elite that Brad made. We just kept throwing them and eventually we started picking up a few fish. We didn't catch anything huge but we were catching a few keepers and some smaller fish as well including a crappie or two. The fish definitely were hitting the chartreuse 1/4 oz. spinners better than any other color in the stained water. About 1pm I went on a run and caught 4 bass real quick. After that I gave Greg a Brad custom spinner and he started picking a few more up as well. We where catching some bluegills on the smaller spinners mixed in with the bass as well which just added to the entertainment value. We picked several fish up off the East Shore campground docks even the the water was falling at the time. I believe I ended up with 14 and Greg with about the same. It was an above average day for the way Bluestone has been fishing as of late.