Do you love big bluegill?
As I turn the last page of the “SLIP’S 2017 LOGS, STATUS AND STRATEGIES” log book on an astounding year of angling… I think back on the initial strategies and goals for the year. I wanted to tag at least (4) Trophy Master Angler Panfish and that would include one thru the ice which would be a PB using that method. I ended up with 2 trophy P.Seeds thru the ice with a PB at 9.8" as well as(13) total Master Anglers thru the rest of the open water season!
To accomplish this feat I would greatly scale down my presentations to micro lite equipment… rods, reels, lines and baits. Careful considerations of lines were incorporated into my methods which would not exceed 2# mono diameter…and super lines that would approach 8# test or above to handle the trophy quality of fishes sought.
I would also aim to make my time on the water more productive by timing the trips with solunar periods… majors and minors on New and Full Moons. I've discovered big fish follow the moon… period! 2017 proved that especially considering the hard water Ice Period. I was on the big fish spots on the peak periods and it paid off!... BIGly!!!
I think I coined a phrase “Fishing for the Numbers by the Numbers” by incorporating all methods and strategies to gain my odds on the water for numbers as well as numbers of trophies. By the end of the day and all the numbers were tallied for 2017 I broke many records for the Master Angler Program in at least 2 counties.
I’m hoping for an even better season for 2018 and success for the fishermen following BBG!
20180430-got a trip planned for the Lull.Period this morning… only time they could make it on the water. The thing saving us hopefully from disaster (skunking!)it is the day after the full moon at 93% efficient fish activity for the over-all day.
Hope to get on the b.crappie bite I have historically done well this time of year… only other thing concerning me is the water temps are down 5°-10°
20180430-we had a scheduled trip today that worked against the solunar tables… but scheduling and finding that gap between day care, school and work found us on the lake during the Lull.Period during a 93% solunar day. We saw it in the forecast… after a significant winter like weather the two days before bringing those water temps back down into the upper 40’s there was no cheating the solunar table. I believe we could of gotten away with some decent fish and numbers if it wasn’t for the huge temperature drop.
Once at the launch we were greeted with some wind, sun and warming temps. The water temp registered 49°… I wasn’t shocked or surprised. We were on the way for a tough slim picking trip… no doubt about it.
I flipped the side scan on to scan 120 ft both sides to look for the fish pulse… were they out deep, tightly schooled, deep or shallow… nothing. The Dead Sea.
We tried the Shallow at the Bank Pattern we were so successful the past few trips with zero response. We looked for them tight to cover, near and on the first break in the shallow coves. No pulse.
We brought the battle to one of our most productive coves… I side scanned 100 ft both sides all the way to the end … only spotting solitary isolated fish with no response to baits.
Once at the end I bottom bounced a Long-Cast/.016 oz jig/1” Apex Minnow and hooked up on a nice tag of a chunky egg laden SMB… saving my day… somewhat.
The only other fish was Earl’s junior LMB… could not spot or tag a single B.Crappie or B.Gill.
The near skunking on the Lull.Period only solidifies our belief in those solunar tables. Scheduling worked against us but it was really nice to hook up with friends and cast!
20180430-Brenden tags some nice shiners
The afternoon started out with Brenden and I taking practice casts out on the lawn ended up taking it to the docks and tagging some nice shiners spawning in the shallow weeds. The 1” swim baits were to big for the fish though they smacked it and held on for awhile. Brenden and I then dropped down to the pink waxie on a .016 oz Jig tossed into the weed pockets to nail them… and of course Brooklynn wanted to hold and touch nearly everyone of them…good times
20180502-Shallow at the Bank Pattern continues
timed a short trip on a Major.Period… put in at the launch with 15 mph sustained and 20-25 mph gusts. I figured I would ride through all this chop to a shallow bay across the lake. This is the bay Earl tagged his Master Angle B.Crappie. I would basically pick up where we left off just a few days later.
The water temps picked up to just over 60° basically moving us into the pre-spawn period for B.Gills and many other panfish.
After an hour scouring the shallow bay I could not buy a panfish. Another boat with 2 anglers entered the bay and informed me they were going on their third hour without a hit! The cold front over the weekend really did a number … but the temps rebounded to almost normal for the season the past two days.
With little else in protected waters from the wind I set-off to discover a bite along the windward side of the lake. I could not spot a fish on sonar... I could not tempt a strike.
Moving between a pair of small stump lined islands I tagged a few small Y.Perch and a Junior N.Pike… got the blood going a little… all long casting/.016oz jig/Lil Minnow or waxie.
With the period nearly ending I tried one last little cut on the way to the launch. I have passed this little bay dozens of times through the years and I have never been tempted to test the waters within.
As I eased into the bay I looked on the contour map and noticed 4-6 feet was avg and maximum for the depth. I scanned for fish and noticed nothing. I fan casted my way into the bay without a bite. I took a long cast with the slip-float/Pink Waxie to some floating debri between some short docks and immediately hooked into a short R.Bass 5ft from shore. The shoreline was clean and lined with seawalls and is one of the main reasons the bay never interested me before. I noticed 64° water temps over 3° more than the rest of the lake.
I found a bite at the furthest end of the bay along a sandy bottomed area next to the seawall. One panfish after another with a nice lunker P.Seed with beautiful coloring in the mix. The Long-Cast/.016oz Jig/Lil Minnow or Pink waxie were the top baits.
My time was up and I had to leave the bite and make my way to the launch barely making a showing for the trip. i was thankful to finally find fish ... any fish! even though there were just a few and many were small i felt relieved just to get on any bite... the lunker p.seed was the cake.
20180503-hey all here is a great video on getting familiar using today's sonar types… nothing gets you up to speed quicker than a learning video then applying on to the open water…
20180504-High winds warning till 18:00 cant catch a break weather-wise… seems I’m always fighting the extremes.
Walked down to the bridge and cast UL jigs into the brown water white caps. Water will clear in a couple days after the t storms last night. Strong current thru the bridge… the fish avoid. So fishing will be a bit negative for awhile.
20180505-~~<")))))><(---*Pre Spawn Period*--64°
20180505-"Brown Water Blues"
my son Kenny gives me a call and asks if I have time to take him fishing on a quick trip. I absolutely responded Yes and quickly checked the “Fishing Points App” and realized we would be fishing the Lull.Period. we quickly launched at the most efficient launch site and made it out on the main lake and noticed visibility was mere inches after the t’storms the past couple nights.
Our plan was to head up the lake and fish the cuts hoping the visibility would be much better. The main lake measured 62°. Once in the cut we knew we would be in trouble when we noticed the visibility was not any better. I call it brown water blues.
I launched a couple slip/float rigs as well as thru the swim jigs with no bites. Kenny stuck with the jigs and landed a decent B.Crappie. The water temp in the cut and canal was 64°. The water temps and time of year were correct but could not get the fish to bite. I’m sure the facts that two important variables were working against us… the brown water and the Lull.Period.
We headed back to the launch where water clarity was significantly better where Kenny quickly tagged a young N.Pike with some fight.
We called the trip shortly after landing the n.pike battle beaten by weather, water conditions and solunar lack of activity.
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