Thursday, September 26, 2013

Top Five Ways Big Bass Gave Me the Slip This Week

Easy fishing spot, no?

Fishing was a rare treat this summer, which is unfortunate.  Last week I decided to carve out a little time to chase big largemouth bass and honestly, it could have been worse.  I caught one frankensunfish and brought zero bass to hand.  But I came so close, repeatedly throwing big baits into heavy cover.   So close.  How close....

Not the Droid I Was Looking For
5.  Blind Willie Bass.  Walking a popper back alongside a log, I watched a gigantic fish blow up the water behind it, then beside it, then in front of it, then behind it again, before finally getting bored with the chase.

4. Long Distance Commuting Bass.  Walked a 4" Rapala Gold Shiner around an old stump and got a monster hit.  The fish went down and for at least three seconds I couldn't even see my line.  In that time, the fish moved across the channel right toward me, and under a sunken tree right in front of me, on the bank.  My line got loose for just a moment, and I was rewarded with two treble hooks full of rotten leaves.

3.  Domestic Spying Bass.  The smallest fish of all, at about 15 inches, came the closest to being brought to hand.  Tricked by a red sparkle YUM Shakalicious, it ran deep, jumped, and made it to the bank, where it threw the hook.  It sat still in the shallow water and I awkwardly tried to grab it like a loaf of bread, getting nothing but a handful of weeds.  Obviously, it swam away.  Except it didn't.  10 minutes later, when I came back to cast from the same spot, I stepped into the water, causing the lazy fish - now in two inches of water - to jump once more, away from me and back to safety.

2. C-Blocker Bass.  I'll admit, I've had this problem many times in the last few years.   A big fish is eyeing up the lure, and the magic is about to happen.  Up comes an 8 inch teenager and short-strikes the lure, earning an eye roll of the bigger fish, who swims away.  Yeah.  Had a few of these.  Par for the course these days, as I keep pushing toward larger lures.

1.  National Geographic Breech Shot Bass.  This was the most exciting moment of the afternoon for sure.  I landed the big golden Rapala inbetween two brush piles in deep water.  At the moment I twitched the lure, the tiny ripple of a fish lip broke the water and kept swimming in an arc across the surface of the water, breeching, then diving in slow motion.   Nature documentaries always photograph big pelagic fish this way and it was amazing, like watching a subway drive past in slow motion.  I just saw the side of a gigantic fish, followed by more of the side of the fish, and  my line tightened, and my drag ran out, all in slow motion.   After the longest second and a half in my fishing lifetime, the fish was deep, the hook was thrown, and my Rapala was slowly floating back to the surface.

Next time: sharper hooks.

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