Sunday, September 8, 2013

Streak Continues 9/8/13

I set out to do some fishing Sunday, with goal of extending my 6 trip 18"+ smallmouth bass streak. Hide the bike up one bridge, then set to the put it. Horrified when I picked up my pack and noticed my hardbait box was gone. I'd left it at home on the workbench. I had tubes, buzzbaits, flukes, grubs, spinnerbaits, and a chatterbait to fish with. Not a bad selection. Problem is, I selected a river I have yet to find a finesse tube bite on. The smallmouth bass simply seem to feed on shad in there! The next obstacle, was low clear water, making spinnerbaits and chatterbaits less than ideal as well.
With that in mind, at the first riffle around 8:45am, I pull a spunky 15.5" SMB on a single spin 1/2 oz spinnerbait with one huge Colorado blade. 2 More fish quickly follow, the third causes the Colorado blade to fall off somwhere at my feet. I can't find it. Ok, I still have the twin spin 1/2 ozer. A few casts into the day, not one fish more and one of the blades on it decides to fly off!  EEK. I take the last tiny blade at put on the first spinnerbait, throwing that periodically throughout the day where cover and depth dictated.
I am rewarded with this bruiser 19.5". He came off a laydown in shade with depth. Powerful fish. That makes 7, don't know if I can get to 10. Should be interesting to try.
Got 4 more after, three on a small buzzbait, and all seemed good. The sun came out with no cloud cover, I was in trouble.
Scrounged some bass on small swimbaits in shade and riffles, but the day never got going right. Off the water by two with only 15 smallmouth bass (19.5", 2-15") 1 Goog. I really missed my hardbaits in gauging fish aggressiveness.
This stretch I had fished for the first time 3 weeks ago had more water (and fish) then after a T-storm.


  1. Congrats on the streak BT. So do you normally start off with crankbait to feel out the smallies aggressiveness? And also is finesse techniques your last choice, say a tube bait?

  2. Glad the streak continues; easy to smile while holding a 19"+ smallie.
    TN streams usually have very clear water from late June to Nov.; drinking water clear in autumn. Over the past few years I've found one finesse lure that out shines all the rest in this challenging situation of extreme clarity: a 4" Zoom fluke in "Arkansas Shiner." The popular white and pearl colors will too often alarm bass as soon as the fluke enters the water; the Arkansas shiner is a much more natural color. The 4" Zoom fluke has a slim profile but it has accounted for more than half of the 18"-20" inchers I have caught during the past 3 years.
    Again, I'm only talking about low, very clear flows. Fishing the larger flows/small rivers, I often switch over to a 5" Yum fluke for its larger profile and greater weight. I much prefer to use topwaters or crankbaits, but the 4" fluke is my go-to lure when nothing else seems to draw strikes. Perhaps this will help along the way. JQ

  3. CM- this particular river has a crankbait bite. Normally, they are put away for me after Spring as nearly useless. They seem to want them here because of the large shad balls swimming about. Shad is high in fat content. When you see thick bass in Indiana, shad cannot be far away.

    Note I have been fishing this river valley for 5-6 straight trips. Today I went elsewhere- no interestt in cranks!

    John, flukes are great baits. I've caught many fish on them. I don't like how 'riggy' they are, so I mostly chose to leave them alone figuring I'll get more casts in, not adjusting the things all the time. I do carry a lucky craft Wander 80, which is a trebled bait that can mimic the action of a fluke plus shimmies on the drop (like a senko). If the fluke bite does heat up and I hear people tearing up on them. I'll bring some if they're doing pretty well.