Do you love big bluegill?
20170711-so after missing a great opportunity tagging a 16” plus B.Crappie the night before... to cheer him up I decided to take Dennis to one of my favorite lakes for Lepomis. We timed the trip to a Major Solunar period to be on a string of my favorite spots for lunker fish which includes one of my trophy P.Seed waypoints.
The afternoon was hot and sunny, little wind with air temps near 90 and water surf temps in the low eighties.
We started along a nice stretch of shoreline to slowly work our way to the area I just recently tagged a certificate P.Seed.
We tagged many B.Gill while Long-Casting/Tiny-Jigs… Dennis had a great tempo going with the 1” Apex Minnow while I worked the Pink-Waxie and Lil Minnow on the Long-Casters. As we hit the trophy P.Seed spot Dennis tagged a trophy 9” er on the Apex Minnow at the solunar peak!…. His first certificate fish!. Congrats Dennis… you’re in the books!
what a great feeling to put family and friends on some nice fishing!
20170713~ Dennis and I decided to fish a mid-sized natural lake for the B.Crappie and B.Gill bite… our plan of strategy was to rely mainly on the long-casters with the tiny jigs. It’s a strategy that works for me in nearly every fishing period on the calendar. If there is space to cast or vertically jig I feel confident on catching fish.
The day’s solunar rating was at 49%... and we did well. Dennis found a great tempo with the B.Crappies with the Long-Casting/.016 oz Jig/Apex Minnow. I concentrated mainly on the B.Gill with the Long-Casting/.015 oz Jig/Pink Waxie. B.Gill focus on this bait more than the B.Crappie. We fished between the docks Long-Casting/.016 oz Jig/Pink Waxie and found some great action with the B.Gill.
in between traveling from waypoint to waypoint we stopped at and pitched too and under some nice looking docks... shooting one of the docks i was greatly rewarded with a nice mid 10's R.Bass
We later found a remote corner at the end of a bay that held countless B.Crappie fishing between downpours we could see coming in.
Nice trip with a good friend!
i used the Long-Casting/Micro Jig/Pink Waxie set-up to shoot under the dock to tag this nice R.Bass!
20170717- I’m considering adding another local lake to my hit list. On two separate trips the past couple days I’ve done some reconnaissance and contour mapping. 10 year history and Back ground check reveals a thin history of trophy B.Gills with one breaking the eleven inch mark… certainly raised my eyebrow a bit.
The initial perimeter scan of the lake revealed many spawning sites with very little weed cover. A firm hard sand bottom. Further sonar scans revealed two separate main lake basins one approaching the maximum depth of 29-0’ and the other at 23-0’.
The association keeps the lake scoured clean of any weed growth except for shallow pads and reeds. There is a DNR access site with a gravel lot and cement launch. Local Fishermen pound this lake hard. the lake is 100% developed along the whole perimeter.
Initial sonar findings during this calm hot stretch in July discovered a developing thermocline at 17-0’~18-0’. Schools of fish were located in large numbers in flats in the 12-0' to 16-0’ range just above the thermocline. The fish were revealed to be many B.Gills in the 4-6” range. They readily grabbed a tungsten ice jig tipped with a Pink Waxie. In two trips I have tagged over 150 fish in that range… frustrating.
Finally, in a last ditch effort for the day, I tried a 13-0 to 15-0’ stretch while waiting my turn pull out at the launch. I spotted schools of the 4-6” B.Gills… while drifting through an area I finally tagged a lunker at 9.4” on the Vertical-Jig/Ice-Jig/Pink-Waxie set-up.
With the new sonar data, I have developed a 90% complete contour map of the lake and will finish on my next trip.
The lake is going to be a challenge…
…nearly completed sonar map.
…school of 4 to 6" b.gills shown clearly in down scan imaging
…while vertically jigging these are the scans im looking for... b.gills moving in the water column
…finally a break thru... nice lunker class B.Gill
20170718-15%/81°~ today’s agenda is to complete the already started contour map of the lake. There is no other method that I know of that allows you to completely familiarize yourself with a body of water than to map it… covering every square yard and converting the data to a GPS coordinated contour map showing bottom composition layers and weedlines with depths marked every 1’.
At least every fisherman unfamiliar with a BOW and without electronics should do a visual perimeter check. So much could be learned from just doing this. Run your craft along the shallows with polarized sunglasses checking bottom substrate, weedbeds, schools of fish and even nesting or old nest depressions from earlier in the season… make notes, take pictures and even mark positions with a smart phone GPS app like “Fishing Points”. Taking the time to do this scan may make the difference of a skunking or success out on the water. Well worth it in my book.
With the map over 90% complete it didn’t take me long to cover the voids with the Elite 7 HDI sonar collecting the necessary data to upload later on that day back at the home office.
Once the data was collected I spent a couple hours checking out some schools of fish and tagging dozens of sub-eating slot fish…. Soooo many fish in the 4-6 inch slot!... frustrating to say the least.
I noticed a developed thermocline at the 17 – 18’ range with many schools of fish 0- 3’ of the bottom at the thermocline break where thermocline meets the lake bottom. Many weed bed patches extending into 20 FOW… wow… extremely clear BOW.
I positioned the boat over a few dense schools of fishes and vertically jigged some bites out of them to identify the species. Just vast quantities of 4-6” ers bluegills mainly with a few seeds mixed in… no b.crappies were tagged.
I used the 4-0’ Daiwa Spinmatic vertical jigging setup that is matched with a Pflueger Trion 50 series and 3# micro thin Nanofil line to tag many of the fish.
I fished a couple deep thermocline breaks during the major solunar period near the boat launch on the way in to finally tag ... a near trophy B.Gill hen. Just a beautiful fish!... made my day!
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