Saturday, August 22, 2009

100+ Fish

After not being able to fish for almost a month, I finally got out to the Des Plaines River on Friday August 21, 2009 and made up for lost time. I had the boat i the water by 7:00 am and was very happy to see some pretty good cloud cover moving in. There wasn't really any wind when I launched, but after the clouds were overhead, the wind picked up pretty good and before long there were whitecaps all up and down the river.

Clouds moving in

At the ramp there was a mass of floating pond scum. It clung to the trailer as I pulled up the ramp and headed for a parking spot. Once I was on my way, I headed to my first usual spot, but found several barges parked along that shoreline. I couldn't get anywhere near my spot so I kept going to spot number 2.

Scum blowing into the ramp

At spot number two I caught a nice Freshwater Drum right away. Then in no time at all I had a couple of very small Smallmouth Bass in (and out) of the boat. That was it for that spot. To get into that spot, you have to pass another spot that looks like it would hold a lot of fish if the conditions are right. I always cast a few times to it, but have never really caught anything there....until today.

Freshwater Drum - First fish of the day

My first cast to the spot resulted in a very small Largemouth Bass. The next cast had me reaching for the net. I had a real good fish on. I landed it and it turned out to be a big White Bass. A couple casts later and I had another slightly smaller one on.

Typical White Bass for the day

I stayed in that spot for over two hours catching fish after fish. Most of the White Bass, Largemouth Bass, and Smallmouth Bass I caught were on the small side, but every now and then I'd put a good a good one in the boat.

Largemouth Bass

Once things slowed down there, I moved to another spot that's always good for a few fish and caught a couple more. Again, they were on the small side, but fun to catch.

Smallmouth Bass

I jumped spots a few more times and continued to catch quite a few fish. I lost track of the time and when I finally looked at my watch I realized it was a little past my usual quitting time. Since the fish were still hitting pretty good, I kept fishing.

Most of the fish were caught on crank baits, and when I run into a good bite, I try to make it a point to throw something at them that I don't normally use. This helps me develop confidence in the bait if I catch something on it, and lets me know I have another option if I ever run into the same conditions in the future. So besides the usual cranks, I caught fish on some plastics I haven't used before. Fishing those in the wind was a little tricky because the wind would put a bow in the line which prevented a solid hook set. For the day I'm sure I caught over 100 fish which makes this one of the best trips in quite a while.

On the way up and down the river I noticed a lack of wild life. I usually see quite a few creatures there, but this time there weren't any to be found. I saw a Belted Kingfisher and a Green Heron along the river, and the usual Turkey Vultures flying overhead, but that was about it.

Here comes the rain

Back at the ramps it started raining just as I got the boat on the trailer. I wound up having to scrub the scum off the boat and trailer in the rain once I got home. Fortunaly it stopped long enough for me to get the interior dried and get both covers on before the thunder, lightning, and heavier rain showed up later.

1 comment:

  1. That is a lot of fish for one day. That must have been great fun. Nice photos of the assortment of fish. It is always exciting when the "bite" is on.