Bluegill - Big Bluegill

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!

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Comment by Andy is OptiMystic on April 6, 2015 at 8:55am

In NC some ramps don't even technically allow fishing, but I have only heard of people being shooed away and not ticketed or anything. I have seen similar regulations posted at a couple of places in GA but it could have been safety in those spots (dangerous tides).

Comment by Slip Sinker on April 6, 2015 at 8:53am

can sometimes be a perplexing fish... 

congrats on catching on a fly rod ... ive never done that before

in michigan most respect or "even" acknowledgement is given to the angler at the launches

Comment by John Sheehan on April 6, 2015 at 5:53am

Glad you had a good day David! Nothing happening up here yet .

Comment by carl hendrix on April 6, 2015 at 5:35am

good going David!!!  fly rods can catch anything!!!

Comment by Allen Morgan on April 5, 2015 at 7:24pm

Nice report and fish!

Comment by David, aka, "McScruff" on April 5, 2015 at 7:20pm
Thank you men.
This is a premier crappie fishery - Dick Tabbert says his biggest ever came from this same BOW.
And in yeara fishing here, this is my first.
I thought it was a bluegill, the way it stayed down and went back and forth.
Comment by Andy is OptiMystic on April 5, 2015 at 6:59pm

Great narrative with a good ending!

Comment by Keith Ritter on April 5, 2015 at 6:28pm

Well the Easter Bunny was good to you Scruffy. Nice fish.

Comment by David, aka, "McScruff" on April 5, 2015 at 5:15pm
Thanks Jeff!
Comment by Jeffrey D. Abney on April 5, 2015 at 5:10pm

Congrats on the Tuxedo Crappie David.......nice testimony and Happy Easter to you and yours......we had a beautiful Spring day in coastal North Carolina after a chilly start.....

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