Do you love big bluegill?
Just got back from my visit to northwestern Pennsylvania and fished with a group of crappie and bass fishing experts at the 2014 Pennsylvania Crappie Camp, organized and set up by PA outdoor writer Darl Black. Great time, great people and great fishing in this part of the state. Here's the short version...
We had 5 boats in the water from Monday thru Thursday, with writers and crappie tourney pros and local experts fishing Pymatuning, Shenango, Conneaut and then Ohio's Mosquito Lake.…Continue
As per request of BBG members, I will try to post the article from my files about our recent trip to the rivers of the Albermarle. This appeared in this Sundays issue of the Carroll County Times...one of the regional column I do on fishing in the Mid Atlantic region.
Here are the photos with the text...…Continue
Ok y'all, this will be a quick hit opener on the stats I have on quality bluegill waters in my region, as I am still reviewing the numbers as this blog will progress. But for now, here are some interesting statistics I have accumilated over the past 12 years concerning bluegills in my regional, or 'home' waters.
Of the 112 lakes/ponds that I have fished over the past 12 years, the number of lakes that have produced 8 inch or better sized bluegill ( my personal minimum for 'quality'…Continue
Okay y'all...here we go! First, fillet about 15 quality sized gills ( 8-9.5 inches), skin them, and check thoroughly for bone removal. Put a pot of water on medium heat and add the fillets, bringing the pot eventually to a slow boil. As the pot heats up, occasionally stir the fillets, as they will break down and flake nicely.Continue
Just a quick blog for those who want to remove the pinbones from their bluegill fillets. In the pic below, the fillet has been started and the top of the ribcage is exposed...Continue
I have been doing a lot of experimenting with the grass shrimp and jig fly patterns for gills, crappies and more. Here are a few of the innovations I have come up with...Continue
After seeing Bruce and Teeg and Josh and others with all those big hybrid sunfish posted up I decided to check my local hybrid factory, a 2 acre pond about 25 miles south of me, to see if I could catch a few good ones. The pond owner said that they hadn't had much luck with them so far this spring, but I didn't let that bother me too much. Last October I had taken a GSF x BG here that measured 12 inches,,,the first 12 inch sunfish, of any kind, I had taken in my home, or local, waters. So I…Continue
Just wanted to ad a quick blog here for how wonderful bluegill fishing continues to be for beginners and pros alike. This past Saturday, April 13, my son Matt and I instructed a basic fishing class for 10 students at a local retreat facility that has a 4 acre lake on the premises. We had a breezy 60 degree day with bright sunshine and set up the students with 10 ft telescoping poles and bobbers/jig/bait combos for some easy bluegill action. Most of the gang had never caught a fish before,…Continue
Despite a prolonged and agonizing arrival of spring, I finally managed to make a decent catch today, but not my beloved bluegills. After several pitty-patty outings of dink gills and stocker-sized trout, I decided to try one of my local bass ponds and hit on a hunch. I had heard from Andrew Ragas of the Fishing Headquarters that a favored early spring bass tactic in the mid-west was to toss rattle baits and keep them at a brisk pace to entice largemouths coming out of hibernation mode.…Continue
Well...what can I say...today was actually a really slow day, except for all the very small and stunted largemouth bass that were hitting anything and everything I threw at them. I saw Tonys' major-league Hybrids last night, looked at them again this morning, and said that's it...I'm going fishin'. Maybe I'll get lucky!!
So, after 90 minutes and no hybrids on the…Continue
I have been trying to tweek some new grass shrimp jigs for fall and early winter fishing that will soon be upon us. here are a few of my latest variations... The jigs on the left are larger, 1/16th oz and the body is brown pearl core braid, with white and brown marabou for the tail...a little bigger offering in the traditional brown/olive shrimp patterns that Jeffrey had…Continue
Made plans to fish my favorite hybrid sunfish pond this morning. Got there about 8:45 AM and it was already starting to heat, with highs predicted in the 100's. Started off with a grey grass shrimp 1/64 th oz hairjig and picked up a few scrawny bass, then dropped it over near the dock and let it free-fall to the bottom. Before I reached a 4 count had a bump and set the hook to this, my firat of 15 hybrid sunfish today...GSF X BG cross...…Continue
OK, looks like July 2, 2012 will go down as one of the all-time great panfishing days in history with a slew of high-end specimen of many species hitting the board tonight. Congratulations to all! Here's how my day went, the short version...
I hit a pond at about 3:30 pm that we had caught big red ears from in the past...had caught my previous PR there two springs ago. Saw some big fish bedding 2 weeks prior but could not get them to bite ANYTHING! The bluegill were still on bed, and…Continue
I have been getting a lot of response and questions about the simple-to-tie grass shrimp hairjig patterns that Jeffrey Abney is having so much success with in North Carolina. Believe me, I never thought such a simple, easy to tie pattern would prove so deadly, but I am nonetheless delighted with our success with them. In the photo above are several olive/ green / gray…Continue
Not far from me is a small stream in southern Pennsylvania that has a reputation as a good smallmouth and trout water. It also has largemouths, crappies and suckers and carp. It is rich in Civil War era history, as much of the waters I fish are. On a beautiful clear afternoon, I tangled with the stream's abundance of panfish. To my pleasant surprise, I found a bunch of…Continue
Okay everybody...let me know what you think. My friend and fisher/partner Andre Sturkey has been posting some pretty impressive photos on this site as of late. He's catching big largemouths, big smallmouths, crappies, pickerel, croakers, cats, big carp, trout, pickerel, white perch, big gills and more and more. Monster stripers can't elude him and trophy bass can not escape him.
My question is this...should Andre be a guide, and quit his day job that brings in $345,000…Continue
Hey y'all, I don't know how many have seen it yet, but the latest In Fisherman magazine ( May 2011) has an outstanding feature article by our own Bill Modica on the pleasures and pursuits of using spoons for big gills! This is exciting stuff, as bill has long been advocating the use of these techniques on this site. Detailed rigs and tactics are again focused, as are many of his tutorial videos found on this site.
Like many of you, I was somewhat skeptical when I first read and heard…Continue
As many of you know, my son Matt and I had the great experience of fishing at Richmond Mill Lake this past November and, literally, had a father/son fishing trip of a lifetime. The weather was cold for Dixie, but the scenery was great and the fishing spectacular. But between all the bluegills, bass, crappie and pickerel were other things of greater importance...the chance to…Continue
No doubt about it...it's fall! We have had several nights in a row with temps in the 40's, and local lakes and ponds are cooling off fast. Now they are calling for a string of nice, 70 degree plus days for about a week. Sheeeesh!