Sunday, August 30, 2015

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Simrad Screen Shots

 In this screen shot I had caught bait and was running back to the marina to pick up my clients. I noticed a bunch of fish stacked up on a contact point adjacent to a feeding flat. This is a classic example of how Largemouth Bass and Stripers work in the summer months. They both use contact points [areas of a large flat that have a lot of definition nearby a channel] to congregate prior to moving up onto the flat where they spread out and feed then they use the same contact point to get back together after feeding to group back up and move off the flat to suspend till another feeding session. I did not have to pick my clients up till 6am so I waypointed the spot and went back to it. I dropped two herring down to 18 feet and hooked up with two 3 to 4 pound Largemouth. When I was a Basshole I would check 20 to 30 contact points a day trying to catch the bass congregating and when I did 5 casts later I would have a limit. I would use a weighted DB3 that I drilled under the bill and filled with lead to get the bait to run deeper. When the Bass would pull off the point to deeper water they would suspend in the same depth. Sometimes I could pull off the point as well and catch the suspending bass once I relocated them. Anyway I was hoping these fish might have been Stripers to put my clients on first thing that morning but that wasn't the case.

 This was the first school of Stripers I located in the morning. This was the tail end of the school where most of the punks were. There were hundreds if not thousands of fish in the school but I could not find the front of the school where the more aggressive Stripers would have been.

 This is just another shot of the school while I was looking for larger fish.

 Here I had located another school of Stripers and was using my side scan to look for the larger fish. We were catching fish here but mostly punks. The fish were not active at this point. I continued to look for more aggressive and larger Stripers until I found what you see in the pic below.

I found the lead pack of the school which were noticeably larger fish. If you look to the left of the side scan screen you can see the larger vertical dashes compared to the smaller ones on the right of the screen. It doesn't take a genius to steer the boat to the left to get on the nicer fish. We caught  four or five nicer Stripers there but the fish were still not active [no streaking and very compressed in the sonar page] and by then 5 or 6 boats had seen us catching fish and has moved in on us with their big motors spooking the school even more. I left these fish to find other schools with no boat traffic in hopes of catching non pressured schools. Stripers do not like fishing pressure and especially do not like Barometric Pressure changes. A cold front had moved in lowering the water temp a degree or two but the Barometric Pressure climbed significantly enough to shut them down. When you see so many fish like there are in these screen shots and you put your baits in their faces only to catch punks and Catfish it is time to move on.  When nicer Stripers are feeding they will not allow a punk or Kitty to eat. The move paid off for us and we caught a 10 pound Striper and numerous other keepers.

Good Electronics are the key to success on lakes in the summer months. Understanding how to set them up and how to interpret what you are seeing are the keys to utilizing their potential to the fullest. Simrad and Lowrance are the best money can buy. They make the difference in fishing or catching!

Friday, August 28, 2015

Thousands of Stripers not wanting to eat.

 Mark, Carmine and Reed

Carmine with a nice Striper

Sunny and warm, Water Temperature 85* and clear
I filled the tanks up with 230 baits this morning, picked my clients up at 6 at High Point and took off in search of Stripers. I checked a couple of areas but boat traffic kept running through where I wanted to fish so I made a move back downlake. I found a school off of a mainlake point so I stopped and we set up on them. Just after stopping fish started breaking nearby us and we started hooking up. I saw hundreds of fish but the bite was not in line with the amount of fish I was seeing. It was quite cool this morning and I believe the front had contributed to the lack of hook ups. After loosing this school I looked around and found remnants of them and worked them for a few minutes. Fish were everywhere but pretty well scattered, not schooled tightly. A friend Dale was trolling across the lake from me where I had found thousands of Stripers two days ago and I noticed he turned around in that area so I called him on the radio and asked if he saw any fish over there. He had run over them and had turned around to hit them again. He had 3 hook ups and hung the other rig up. He called Tony and myself over to fish it with bait because there was too much irregular structure for him to work. We went over and the mother-load of Stripers were there. We set up on them but again for seeing thousands of fish on the depth finder we were only catching a few here and there, and mostly punks. After 45 minutes of working them and catching maybe 20 fish it got way too crowded with boats so I moved on. We hit a couple of other areas catching fish everywhere we went. Reed was hot this morning catching well over half of the fish while Carmine sat patiently up front. He got the last laugh by catching the biggest Striper of the day.  Although we found thousands of fish today the Stripers really did not cooperate and we only caught about 35. The guys had a great time with that but I know what it could have been if the fish wanted to eat this morning.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

SIMRAD Screen Shots

 This is a shot I popped yesterday morning while in a school of Stripers. We had been banging them for 45 minutes and this was the first chance to take a pic of what we were working. Lately I have been using my Navionics map to keep me on contours that the Stripers are holding on. I have shaded the map with blue being 0 to 20 feet and also 40 feet and above. This allows me to keep in the 21 to 40 foot range where we have been catching the fish lately. In the mornings the fish have been very close to the transition from around 20 feet then as it gets brighter they have tended to move deeper.

I took this shot looking for Stripers. I had been cruising about 20 mph on the left side of my echo screen and saw a bunch of Stripers then slowed down to investigate. The Striprs at speed show up as dark colored "blobs" but as I slow down they turn into arches with color in the middle. I keep my colorline where all the keeper fish show some dark redish brown in them and the punks simply show yellow. This allows me to keep my sensitivity up while running but enables me to distinguish keeper fish. Also in this screen shot while chirping you can clearly see a Striper right in the middle of a school of herring. When I noticed that I immediately cut the big motor off, touched the screen over the school of bait, deployed the trolling motor, went directly to the waypoint and spanked the Stripers. Notice how clear the screenshot is on this Simrad. How sweet it is to have technology like this and know how to take advantage of it.

This is the time of year Anthony and myself [Navico Pro Staff] sell our units to make room for our new ones. We have sold two of our Lowrance's and have a month to sell one more Lowrance and two NSS EVO 2 12 inch touch units. These are units I take my pics on and use daily. They are under warranty and guaranteed to put you on fish. They also come with a introductory demo to educate you on how to use them. They are so user friendly it doesn't take but a few minutes to feel comfortable with them. I can be reached at Jim_Hemby@hotmail.com . Check out all the Simrad products at Greentop Sporting Goods.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Boys Day Out

Benjamin, Ralph and Alec

Sunny and Pleasant, Water Temperature 85* and Clear.
This is my kind of charter, two boys eager to catch fish and their Dad eager to see them catch fish. Right at first light I set them up on a school of Stripers. We no sooner put the baits in the water before the rods started bending over. An hour later we had boated 20 fish a were ready for a break. We hit a couple more ares with limited success then I set up over a 18 foot structure and hooked into a couple of big uns. Benny caught the first big fish and thought he was the cats meow until Alec hooked up and when his fish rolled about 30 yards from the boat everyone gasped. The boys did great today catching about 40 to 50 fish. Not a bad way to spend the morning on the water watching boys catching fish.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Yes Roy CAN Catch fish

Margus, Irina, Ann and Roy

Sunny and Pleasant, water temperature 83* and Clear
A couple of weeks ago I took out a group of guys and Tony took out the rest. As we were departing from the dock the guys on my boat pitied the other boat because Roy was on it and he had a reputation of not being able to catch fish. Well we fished all morning and came back t the dock that day and we had a nice stringer of fish but Tony's boat had 0. After taking pictures that day Roy said his father in law was coming from overseas and loves to fish, would I take them out , even with the monkey on Roy's back. I said Bulls__t, lets go and we will catch plenty of fish. Well if anyone sees a monkey swimming around the lake, it is finally off of Roy's back. We had a lot of fun this morning catching Stripers and Margus will have good memories of fishing in America. Here is a picture of some happy Fishermen.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Navico Screen Shots

 This is a screen shot that I popped yesterday morning when we were all over our first school of Stripers. As you can see we had Stripers from 15 to 28 feet deep here. Whenever you see this you should have all your rods hooked up.

 I took this shot a little later in the morning. I lost the deeper schools of earlier on in the day so I decided to look shallower and look what we found....Stripers.

 This shot came from a Lowrance HDS12. It was taken at the same time as the top Simrad screen shot was. In both shots you can clearly see how many Stripers are congregated below the boat. Notice the smaller fish hugging the bottom under the Stripers on the left half of the sonar screen. These are Catfish gobbling up the scraps the Stripers create when they attack a school of bait. Catfish hang below and behind schools of Stripers. Once you start catching Cats, either raise your baits up or get back into the nucleus of the Striper school. The top part of this screen shows side scan doing its job. Each vertical dash is a Striper. I kept the boat positioned right in the middle of the school. Notice I have hundreds of Stripers on both sides of the boat. Without Side scan I could have lost the school within minutes. Are you fishing without this technology? If you are you probably are simply fishing, not catching. Want to get hooked up with a Simrad or a Lowrance at a good price? It's the time of year for Anthony and myself to replace our Pro Staff units. Email me at Jim_Hemby@hotmail.com if you are interested.