Friday, December 24, 2010

2010- Indiana Smallmouth Catch Recap.

2010 went out with a wimper; an icy ending. I did get on the board in December, only just, with 11 bass back on December 5th! I landed smallmouth bass  in 22 different streams in Indiana  in 2010.

 I have a string of smallmouth every month  going on 5 years now. January could be tough if we don't get some open water.

Warning: there be statistics and numbers below. Turn away now, if that's not your bag.

2010. Overall, a good year when I think about the feel of it. Numbers were up. I ended with 1,483 bass (98% smallmouth bass) and 147 'other' fish in 431.35 hours in 87 trips. My best ever yearly rate at 3.44 SMB per hour fished (3.78 fish per hour of all types while SMB fishing).

I fished less, but caught more bass in less time. I was on the water 140 hours less in 2010 than 2009

 Some great numbers days; I had 7 days 20-29 SMB, 8 days 30-39 SMB, 6 days 40-49 SMB, 2 days 50-59 SMB, 1 day 60-69 SMB, and 2 days 70-79 SMB.

Lots of action from May onwards.Very slow before then.

I landed 146 Smallmouth Bass 16" or better. 89 were 17" or better. The percentage of larger fish in 2010 was way down from 13.93% in 2009 to 9.84% in 2010 (lowest since I've kept track).

The larger 18"+ group shrunk from 59 in 2009 to 32 in 2010. 2009 was my best year for big fish and worst for numbers. So now we have a near reversal. (2007 was my best year for numbers 1,876 and 16" + = 235)

I did fish some smaller feeders that probably limited the upper size smallmouth as well as inflating numbers of 11-14" smb. However, it didn't change when I got back out in the big rivers. There it were lots of dinks m(under12") and one nice fish (17"+) a trip, maybe two. On several streams, it was clear  a fine year class of 8-11" bass was just getting to catchable size. A nice sign for future Indiana smallie populations.

In 2010, it took me about 2.95 hours to land a 16"+ smallmouth bass, 13.48 hours to land a 18"+ smallmouth bass, and 53.9 hours per 20"+ smallmouth bass.

In 2009, it took me about 3.4 hours to land a 16"+ smallmouth bass, 9.68 hours to land a 18"+ smallmouth bass, and 51.9 hours to land a 20"+ smallmouth bass.

It would suggest a 18-19" size class may have had a hard time, though 8 fish over 20" would indicate the cupboard is not dry. Smaller streams could have changed this somewhat, as there seemed to be more 16-17" bass, and not many 18"+ fish as year's passed.


  1. That's cool that you keep track of your fish like that. Many years ago I used to keep track of numbers pretty close, but haven't for a long time. I blogged most if not all of my fishing trips this year, but I'm pretty certain I didn't document every fish every trip.

    Maybe if I'm bored sometime this winter I'll go back and count fish.

  2. BT,

    Great breakdown. For 3-4 seasons I really fish alot and kept track. I averaged around 2000 bass, over 120 trips, 250 bass 17" or better, 20 bass 20" or better. The best thing I learned was, the how, where, when and why. It saves me enormous amounts of time and energy now. I haven't been skunked since March 2001.

    Happy Holidays.


  3. BP- I think it helps me learn, but I always liked player stats- football cards, baseball cards, etc. So now I keep one on myself and each river I fish.

    Mark- We definately have the same affliction. See you're into counting too.

    How many streams would you fish per year?

    Really wish I would have added a couple more days and hit 2000 back in 07. I don't know if I'll ever get that good of a chance again to hit 2000 in a year.

    Happy Holidays all!

  4. BT,

    I fish half the amount now. Mostly cold weather/water conditions of spring/fall. Kankakee River is the only flow I fish, with some largemouth lake fishing thrown in.

    Summer wading on the chunk broken limestone has pretty much destroyed my lower back. Spring bank running and specific location fall fishing is primarily what I do now.


  5. BT,

    Looks like you are going to get a good warming trend. You may be able to get some January angling in.


  6. I know!. Maybe even New Year's Eve.

    Very surprised by how little run off was created by the melted snow!

  7. BT: Nice stats and very interesting reading. I live in Fishers (on the river) and fish the White River almost exclusively. Mostly I'm drift fishing from a kayak between Noblesville and the 116th Steet bridge. I wade the good water. I keep a daily fish log, but I never thought about breaking it down into fish per hour. How do you chart your time? Do you count the time fishing only or do you count travel eating etc. time too?

    I've got all my yaks out of the water now, but they'll probably be back in, in late March or early April. I almost always have a spare kayak in the water. If you get the itch to fish the White N. of 116th Street in Fishers drop me an e-mail. Thanks again for the blog. It's good to know there are other smallie maniacs out there. Hmmm does this blog list my e-mail address for you?


  8. Dave, I only count fishing time. Drive to and from I don't count. Walking back an hour through the woods, biking, lunch breaks, etc.

    Thanks for reading. I appreciate the questions.

    Plenty of smallie maniacs around, stop into 'forums' for plenty more smallie talk.

    As for fishing the White, we'll see. I'm usually game!

  9. BT: How ya doin' with all this "hard" water? Thanks for the Indy sm link I'll check it out.
    Drop me an e-mail if you want to give the White a shot come Spring and decent water.