Friday, July 30, 2010

Craig, John, Chris, Bob, Chris and Robert

Sunny and Pleasant, Water Temperature 87* and Clear.
A nice cold front blew through yesterday and finally we had a day where the temps did not get into the 90"s. I picked the guys up at their dock this morning, the air temp was 67*, 10 degrees cooler than every morning of the last few weeks. We went directly to where I had found fish yesterday, saw some fish on the depth finder and set up on them. We popped only one so we got back on the big motor and looked, and looked, and looked. Apparently the cold front had dispersed the schools, they were nowhere to be found. John was also out this morning and had been fishing the whole time I was looking and said he was catching a fish about once every 15 minutes, he didn't see fish but was still taking hits. We set up on singles and small pods numerous times but could only squeeze out a dozen Stripers this morning. This group of guys were good friends and fishing buddies, we had a ball and a lot of fun fishing but it would have been a better morning if we could have caught more fish. Although 12 Stripers in a morning is a good catch for most I feel like I got my butt kicked!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Michael Duke with John, Bert and David

Sunny and HOT, Water Temperature 88* and Clear. John and I both had clients this morning so we got out early and caught bait. We both put 175 baits in our tanks and picked up our clients at 5:30 at High Point. John set up on a spot where he saw some fish breaking and I kept on the big motor looking for schools. We set up on some pods of fish but I was impatient with singles and wanted to locate schools so I spent about an hour looking. When I ran over what is pictured on the graph I knew I was on a good school. As you can imagine as soon as baits hit the water we started taking hits. Naturally my crew was anxious because there were so many fish in the area. It was hard for them to remember a few key rules in fishing with circle hooks but it didn't take them long to start filling the cooler. In the heat of the action I looked up at Michael, he had a smile on his face as if the stock market had just risen a thousand points. We worked this school for about an hour before we lost it and in the process we went through 120 baits. I looked for 10 minutes and could not locate them so I moved to a different part of the lake and ran over another school. We set out some baits but we only had about 20 left in the tank. I called John , he said he had about 50 baits left and needed 3 more fish to limit out. I told him to come and work the school I was on hoping he could catch their limit and then I could get the rest of his baits. John drove past us, located the school, set out 8 baits and everyone of them hooked up. While his clients were trying to work the fish I was on high heading his direction. He gave us his baits, we put them out and caught our limit within 2oo yards of where I had originally found the school. Today we had over 150 strikes, caught about 30 Stripers and a half dozen Cats and was home in time for lunch.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Brian, Dan, Nikki and Tim

Sunny and Hot, Water temperature 90* and Clear.
Caught 160 baits this morning and picked my clients up at 5:15 at their dock. Brian had called a couple time last week very anxious to learn how to Striper fish, I don't know if he even slept the last few nights. Since he wanted to learn I stayed within sight of his dad's house teaching them how to read the depth finder and all aspects of catching Stripers. I told them when I picked them up that the full moon hurt us yesterday, hopefully we could catch some this morning before the schools would break up. I located a school about 400 yards from their dock so we set up on them. The Stripers were stacked under our boat but as I expected they obviously had fed hard last night, we were not taking hits. I continued to work the school and finally we started hooking up. Nikki popped the first couple of fish, Brian lost a couple then Dan popped a couple. After catching 4 or 5 the school dissipated so we got the lines in and looked for others. John was fishing nearby so we double teamed the schools and were able to keep up with them pretty well. We stayed in the fish but we never got out of control, we would only have one fish on at a time. We had gone through 120 baits when John called us over to him. He had found a school busting on the surface and when we got to him he was hooked up. We ended up working the same vicinity for about an hour till we ran completely out of baits. This morning we had caught plenty of nice Stripers, the crew kept 17 to take home and we got off the water by 9 just before the lake got too busy and too hot. Nikki and her father Dan are pictured holding fish that they had just caught and Tim is holding 2 Stripers that he caught back to back. Brian got hooked on Striper fishing, probably see his picture some more on my journal.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Michael, Sarah and Pearson

Sunny and Hot, Water Temperature 90* and Clear.
My grandson Michael wanted to go fishing this morning so we got up early, caught bait and met Sarah, her Dad and Pearson at 5 o'clock at High Point. We went to an area where I knew a school had been working for about 3 weeks now and set out some lines waiting for them to arrive. We worked the area for about 10 minutes without seeing anything, I couldn't stand it so we got the baits in and I started looking in the area for the school. The sun was about to come up when I ran over what appeared to be about a thousand fish. We set up on them but they were moving so fast we had to get the baits back in and relocate them. We finally got back on them and the kids were able to have fun with them. Michael is pictured with his big fish of the day, Sarah with the first fish of the day and Pearson with a very nice fish. Pearson had never caught fish this big before. A little after 8 we traded the fishing rods for a tube and pulled the kids around the lake for a couple hours more. Hard to say what they enjoyed more, when we were fishing their eyes were bugged out watching for the rods to bow over and screaming when they were reeling in fish, but when they were in the tube not only did they have constant smiles on their faces so did all of us in the boat. I know the morning burnt Michael out, he came home, ate lunch, and slept for 3 hours.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Brad, Shawn, Helen, Mike and George

Sunny and Warm, Water Temperature 87* and Clear.
This morning I got out early and caught 175 baits and picked my clients up at their dock at 5:30. As I shook their hands greeting them I noticed Mike's hand was slimy with suntan lotion. I advised them to wear the lotion but I had them was their hands with a no sent soap in order not to spook the fish. I have had clients on board with lotion on their hands only catch 1/5 of the fish that other fisherman on board who had clean hands caught. I also instructed them on how to deploy the lines and told them that this time of year if they look at my journal and they see pictures of clients holding up large stringers of fish, those clients listened and understood how to put the baits in the Stripers face in order to get a positive reaction from the fish to strike. I also said the pictures with small stringers usually clients had trouble deploying the baits and missed the short windows of opportunity to catch schooled fish this time of year. I think I got their attention, by 7:20 we had 22 keeper Stripers in the cooler. We set up on some scattered pods of fish this morning and I kept the boat moving slowly to keep hitting the different groups of Stripers. We were doing very well till we got busted by an inconsiderate troller in a Sea Pro. He had seen us boating some nice Stripers and decided to try to run his lures next to my boat. I asked him not to come so close to me, so he veered off a little. Needless to say, he succeeded in spooking the school of fish we were working so we had to move. Ten thousand acres of lake to fish, fish all over the lake, we are 35 yards off the bank, the lake is a half mile wide, no other boats in sight, they have to come over and ruin our fishing, go figure! Anyway we went and found a couple of more schools, did the same drill, caught dozens of more fish, got busted again and would move again. At one point we had about 20 baits left so I decided to go uplake where there were no boats and burn up the rest of the baits. We caught a couple of Stripers then I saw a school on the depth finder. I told them to get ready and Brad hooked up and landed one, backed up to the front of the boat so Shawn could take his fish off and hollered "Ut Oh". We all looked up at him as he was about to fall out of the boat but he sat down on the trolling motor and saved his fall. After everyone stopped laughing we caught a couple more fish that were hooked up and called it a day. Today everyone had a great day and a lot of fun, I lost count of how many fish we caught altogether but we kept 24 Stripers and released the others to fight again. We were able to get off the water by 9 before the day turned too hot to enjoy.

Monday, July 19, 2010

DP, Lisa, Taylor, Anthony[huh], and Gina

Cloudy and Pleasant, Water Temperature 87* and Clear.
Got out early to catch bait and picked the guys up at 5:30 at High Point. With the front moving in this morning I was uncertain how the fish would react but I looked for large schools of Stripers. I saw numerous pods but no huge schools. John called and said he saw about 20 fish on the screen so I move over by him and looked on the big motor but he was seeing the same as we were, 8 0r 10 here and there. He was catching fish so I continued to look. Anthony was starting to get anxious so I set up on a couple pods of fish and the kids got a taste of Striper fishing. We had action for about 20 minutes then started catching Cats so I moved on. We continued to look for schools but where we were looking they never developed well. It was getting cloudier by the minute so we decided to get some baits in the water and we steadily caught fish. We made 3 or 4 moves and around 8:30 we started catching them pretty well. One of the girls told DP that they need to us the bathroom, DP's reply was we are really on the fish now, try to hold it! Well, less than 2 minutes later we were going for the bucket. Everything was going well till DP emptied the bucket, the other kids aboard had not known what had previously happened and as some floaters went by they asked what were those things. I told them they were fish eggs and continued fishing. We worked the general area for about 20 more minutes but did not get a strike. We picked up and made a couple more moves, it started to rain so we called it a day and came in. On the way to the dock DP said "You know once I emptied that bucket we never got another strike!" I think he learned a good lesson today, when a little girl has to go she has to go.
Everyone had a good time, the kids caught a bunch of fish and we kept 12 to take home for a fish fry. Pictured are Taylor in the white shirt, Gina in the pink shirt and Anthony John with the hood on.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Duane and Jean-Paul

Met the guys at the marina a little after 5am and hit the water. I showed them how to deploy the baits and set up on a mock school of Stripers so that they could understand completely how to put the baits in. Once they caught on we got the baits up and I got on my big motor to look for schools. I found what I wanted after about 5 minutes of looking, told the guys how deep to put the baits, put out 10 baits and the rods started bending in half. I had warned Duane 2 days ago that he needed more than two fisherman on the boat, it is hard enough for 4 fisherman to handle the action much less 2 guys working 10 rods. Well they got there workout this morning, by 6:50 they had caught over a dozen Stripers. Once other boats got around me I decided to move on and find another school, which we did a couple of times. The guys kept 12 Stripers to take home and released the other fish. The schools dissipated early this morning, by 8 fish were scattered. We came in about 8:30 before it got too hot and before the weekend warriors hit the water.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Lou Hart and Zackary

Cloudy and Cool, Water temperature 88* and Clear.
Got out early to catch bait, took quite a while, we had thunderstorms last night and sometimes that breaks up the schools of bait making it hard to catch. Lou got lost this morning so we got a late start. I briefed them on how to deploy the baits and went down to where I knew a nice school had been hanging out. I saw the fish on my Lowrance and told them how many pulls to put the baits. They had a few issues getting the baits out at first but once we got the baits in the water the rods started bowing over. We worked the school for about 30 minutes before I lost it. I got back on the big motor and found it again and we did the drill again. I left that school and found another, put the bait out and spanked them again. Zackary caught the 2 largest fish of the morning, he will have some memories to take back to West Va. By 7:30 we had caught our limit of 12 Stripers and also had caught 5 or 6 Kitties.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Steve Curran with guests Matt Heidel, Rick and Bill Jacobs

Got out between thunderstorms to catch bait and picked the guys up at High Point at 5:30. I pulled out of the way and showed them exactly how to deploy the lines and how to use circle hooks. I knew of a huge school of Stripers that I had been working every morning so I headed straight for them. They were right where I expected to find them and they were there thick. I told my crew how many pulls to put the baits and started baiting their hooks. I looked at My Lowrance and the screen looked like a pot of spaghetti, hundreds of arches intertwined throughout the screen. I called a friend Brian over to check it out, he got about a hundred yards from me and was on the school. Charlie came over to us and he sat down 200 yards from us and he was on the school. The school had to be at least 5 acres . John was further uplake and had not found anything yet so he came down, stopped about 500 yards from us and he was on the school. So we are all on this school, 15 minutes later it evaporates, we all lost it and looked for 20 minutes without being able to relocate it. After looking for about 30 minutes in the general vicinity I decided to make a big move and went a couple miles and found another school. We set up on it but only caught punks and Cats but we were seeing numerous arches so I put out some trolling rods and Brian also trolled through it picking up about 8 or 10 fish, but mostly punks. By now it was pouring down, John had already gone back to the marina to dry out and buy raingear and Brian was preparing to call it quits for the day. I told the guys I knew where there was a good school of Stripers, but were they willing to run in that downpour for about 3 miles to get to them, they all were soaked and were eager to go. We ran to the area, I located the school and we set up on them. I told the guys before the first bait hit the water that if they got the baits out correctly this time everything would hook up, and for the next 40 minutes it was pandemonium on the boat. No sooner the bait would get in the strike zone before the rod would bend over. We lost the school but found it again and repeated the drill. By now the wind was howling which made it difficult to hold the boat over fish, so I had the guys reel in the baits and trolled through the school to catch the fish. Today we caught over 40 Stripers and about 10 Kitties. The guys kept 20 Stripers and released the others to fight again. We were back at the dock before noon.

Friday, July 09, 2010

Howard, Glen, Larry and Agnes

Sunny, Hot, Water Temperature 90* and Clear.
Caught 220 baits this morning and picked everyone up at the marina at 5:30am. Looked for schools for about 10 minutes then decided to put some baits out where we caught some fish yesterday. We worked the area for about an hour and caught a few Stripers but I was getting greedy and wanted to find some big schools. I looked for about 30 minutes then set up on some fish, Agnes caught a very nice Striper and a friend Charlie called out on the radio that he was on a huge school, but it was 6 miles from where we were at. We lost our school so I took off toward Charlie, got to where he had been on fish and they had moved, figures! We worked the area for 30 minutes then went back looking for schools but could never find any tight enough to fish, just scattered pods. We hit a couple more areas and popped a few fish then I noticed we were down to about 25 baits. I made one final move to where I thought we could put a couple nice fish in the boat. Glen hooked up with a hog but it broke off on another line. Then Agnes hooked into a nice one. We had 4 or 5 more solid hook up and actually broke a couple off. We were running out of bait and the Stripers were turning on. Agnes hooked up , then Glen caught a couple, Larry hooked into 4 or 5 in a row and Howard caught a couple but we ran out of bait. I looked for more bait but could not find any so we called it a day. Today we caught 25 Stripers, a Largemouth Bass and over a dozen Catfish. The crew kept 15 Stripers to take home and released the rest to fight again.

Thursday, July 08, 2010

David Saunders [Equity Concepts] with guests Craig, Colin, Ian and Josh

Sunny and Hot, Water Temperature 90* and Clear.
Caught bait early this morning and picked up my crew at 5:30 at High Point. I instructed them on how to deploy the baits and went looking for schools. We set up on some scattered fish as a drill to learn how to put the baits out, caught a couple fish then I went looking for the real deal. I looked for about 15 minutes, Ian was getting impatient and asked if there were any fish in the lake, but soon I found what I wanted and we set up on it. The fish were shallow this early in the morning so I told them to put the baits out at 9 pulls and before we got all the baits in the action started with Ian hopping on the first rod. When he landed the fish his eyeballs almost popped out of his head, he had waited for this day and there were indeed fish in the lake. For the next 90 minutes we had steady but controllable action. In that time frame we had 30 solid hookups but had a few issues getting all the fish into the boat. David actually had 3 hooks come off the line, he said they had to be monsters. That school moved on and so did we. We stayed in the general area, set up on Stripers maybe 3 more times before David informed me that they were meeting a friend around 11, so I showed the guys how to troll lures then got them back to the marina in time to meet their friend. It was a great morning for everyone and now the boys know not only are there nice Stripers in the lake but how to catch the them.

Monday, July 05, 2010

Quinn, Wendy and Dylan

Sunny and Hot, Water Temperature 85* and Clear.
Jeanne's daughter's family is down for awhile so we decided to take the boys fishing for a couple hours this morning and to get off the water before it got hot and the weekend warriors hit the water. We caught bait and headed downlake till we couldn't see any boats. I found a school of Stripers over 40 feet of water so Wendy and myself put out 10 downlines rigged with Herring. It took about 3 or 4 minutes before we took our first hit, Dylan reeled in a Catfish, I told him to kiss it and it would bring him luck, so he did. I knew by catching the Cat that we were on the tail end of the school so I sped up my trolling motor, moved about 75 yards and got right into the middle of the Stripers. I called a friend over to work the school and before I hung up with him the rods started bending over. The action was perfect, Wendy and Myself constantly stayed busy baiting and taking fish off while the boys reeled the Stripers in. I wasn't out today to have all the rods hooked up at once, we just wanted to have enough action for the guys to keep interested for an hour or two. We hit 3 more schools, caught fish out of all of them and got off the water before most people woke up today. We kept all I wanted to clean and released the rest to fight again.