Bluegill - Big Bluegill

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I went to a new pond this week. One that I had never fished before (and it's only about 45 minutes from home!). Lauched the 10' Pelican Bass Raider and went off to explore Smithville Lake in Caroline County, Md. It is a 47 acre former grist mill lake fed by a creek. I quickly found it to be quite productive as I caught about 40 Crappie (most of which were 9"-14") , a dozen and a half Gills (6"-9") and 2 Chain Pickeral (13 1/2 & 16 1/2").

There were a number of sunken Christmas Trees disopersed around the lake and natural deadfalls along the shoreline. These were the most productive spots to catch. when things got slow, I would just slowly troll my rigs around.

The fish in my picture is the 14" Crappie of the day. I may have to make a return visit this coming Wednesday.

 

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Looks like they're ready to spawn! Nice pics!

nice crappie right there! congrats!

Nice fish!

Is your boat a kayak or canoe of some kind?

Actually it's one of those little plastic Bass Boats. It's called a Pelican  Bass raider 10. It kinda looks like a green mortar box with two removeable seats on metal brackets. It's 4' wide and weighs only about 150 lbs. It's perfect for the small impoundment fishing I have been doing the last couple of years. I have a 40 lb. electric trolling motor and a small Hummingbird depth finder to round out the rig. Most of the time I leave one seat at home as I fish solo. She floats in about 3"- 4" of water with my big butt aboard. 

Ok.  Around here we call them "water scamps" or "bass buggies".  You've got a better draft than I do.  My kayak needs 6" to freely navigate with my own big butt aboard. 

Bass Buggy it is. Although I have to admit I haven't caught but a few small bass on her. I tend to lean well in favor of pan fish. I have a kayak too. But that has me sitting so low to the water that I can't see down into the brush pile etc. as well as I can with the buggy.

Smithville is a great little public lake, and I have had some good catches there. Try just down the road off of Noble Road the Idylwild Wildlife Management Area. About a dozen ponds/lakes and connecting ditches for big crappie, gills and some nice bass, plus some big gar. Chain pickerel, too. Good canoe and kayak water...might be tough getting back into the lakes with your bass buggy...about a 15 minute walk to the lakes from the parking lot.

That crappie's physical dynamics are as good as any I have ever seen...great fish!

I have heard there are big, 12 inch class redear sunfish in Smithville...but don't tell anyone!

Jim,

I was hoping that you would chime in here. I had heard good things about Smithville, but never made it down there (until last week). I really had a ball. The quality and numbers of the Crappies there was much better than I have experienced elsewhere on the shore. In fact, I plan a return trip tomorrow if the weatherman (and my chores) allow.

12" class Redears eh? A 12" er has been my holy grail since switching from a hard core saltwater enthusiast a few years ago. I have never personally broken 11". In fact I haven't broken 10" in about 25 years. My set-up last week was more targeted to Crappie after the first 15 minutes. I may have some versatility if I can return tomorrow.

The couple of Pike I caught were also allot bigger than what I catch in Unicorn Lake. I may even take a gift to them tomorrow! Since my first visit last week I have been able to think of nothing else.

I'll also have to do a scouting trip to Idylwild.

Ron good to see your lake payed out in dividends. Nice to fish a new lake and get quality fish to boot especially being the first time on the lake . Great job and congrats on that nice looking crappie. 

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