Do you love big bluegill?
I hit up one of the camping areas set up by the power company early today. Lake Murray was constructed in the 1920's as a power generation reservoir... And the South Carolina Electric And Gas Co. maintain a good half dozen of these public recreation sites around the lake.
This one is on a point, so you can walk around and get several micro-environs as you go.
I started on the wind side, something I didn't relish. Roll casting into a stiff, cold breeze isn't a thrill. Often enough, the windy side of a point is a decent place to fish; the wind drives both freshened water, cover and food into the windward shore.
Except today's early wind was a northeaster; the worst kind. It was all snags and no fish - with not even a reasonably good picture to share. It was a fairly quick trip around that side of the point!
Out at the end, I hoped the point would slow the water and create a slack zone where fish might feed. It was also pocked with dead stumps and wind-blown tangled driftwood - a good sign.
But alas, it was cold and the fish were elsewhere. Two guys nearby in a boat had no better luck, and also abandoned the spot.
A cool thing about this spot is that just across the waterway are some eagles nests, set on tall poles. These are maintained as an aerie, the entire area a sanctuary and breeding habitat for the birds. Much of the shore is developed residential, but there remain large tracts of undeveloped land, like this one.
Further along the leeward shore, the wind finally abated; the woods and land blocked it. Okay, this was nice. And I got a few rises to my new "Boobie" fly. Here again, the entire shore is littered with stumps, downed trees and tangles all in about 4-8 feet of water. This should be a good spot for the float tube.
Finally, I'd worked my way around to the boat ramp. By now, the wind had shifted to southerly one and things started to warm.
Some campers had a cheap inflatable kayak tied up, which made me worry for anyone in the thing.
But here and there, rising fish were breaking the water, and I was getting a few tentative rises to a Stimulator. Which is when the early boaters started to arrive to load and head home.
I was just that "weird guy" hanging around with his fly rod at that point. You're not supposed to fish at boat ramps, so I waved at everyone trying to be diplomatic. A few folks came over to wonder at my line and little flies, and I maintained a low profile.
But I was waiting for the boats to leave - AFTER STIRRING UP THE BOTTOM WITH THEIR PROP WASH.
The fish around boat ramps are used to boats, and wait for this bottom stirring- all kinda things get swept up for them.
So I tied on a leech pattern and that was the trick. Bingo! A medium strip and rod lift, and I was feeling bumps. Finally, I connected - with crappie!
I haven't seen a crappie in years; I've joked for several seasons that they run when I arrive. So this was a welcome change.
Soon, though, the bite died and it was time to go.
All in all, a nice start to Easter Sunday. Now, to the family festivities. Hope you all have a good one!