Five years ago this week I spent a full day roaming and rowing some of my strip mine stomping grounds. The combination of many public and private fishing holes produced a sizeable quantity of bass including several in the two pound range. Below are the stats and a couple notes from the original three-part fishing report posted May 27-29, 2015.
Top Bass of the day at 2-13 on a Senko wacky rig
Date: May 23, 2015
Location: Knox County strip pits (2 sites – 9 lakes)
Time: 6:55am-8:00pm (8.75 hours fishing, the rest walking/relocating)
Air Temp: 55-75F
Water Temp: 70F
Totals: 58 bass
Lures: Senko weighted wacky rig (various colors) – 35 bass, Strike King Red Eye (sexy shad) – 9 bass, Booyah Buzz Buzzbait (salt & pepper) – 8 bass, K9 Walker (Madd Shadd) – 4 bass, Mann’s Baby 1- crankbait (copper shad) – 1 bass, Rebel Zell Rowland Pop’R – 1 bass
Top Bass: 2-13 (Senko)
Top 5 Weight: 10-0 (2-13,2-1,1-15,1-11,1-8)
An old Zell Rowland signature Rebel Pop’R, probably older than some folks reading this post
Notes & Nonsense
Topwater Tactics – With the weed choked waters I did a fair amount of topwater casting by throwing a buzzbait, stickbait and popper as far as I could into open water. I’d then work it back to the edge and give a big yank to send it flying back in my direction and then reel it up out of the grass on the bank nearby. It was cool to nab a few on a K9 Walker stickbait made by HO.com reader, Frank Harvey. In addition, I caught one on a Zell Rowland Pop’R autograph model that is probably over 20 years old and likely hadn’t caught a bass for nearly as long. Gotta do what you gotta do when dealt some tough conditions.
K9 Walker, a homemade topwater bait received from a blog reader many years ago
Unlucky Bass – The 2-1 pictured below had a bad day upon making a decision to try a Senko for brunch. For starters, my equipment is a bit less than new and would not be mistaken for top dollar as my money goes elsewhere. So anyway, the bail on my spinning reel flipped open on the hookset leading me to originally think I’d busted the line. I quickly realized that wasn’t the case, found that the tough luck fish was still attached and finished battling the nice bass to the boat. Then I discovered that the fish was hooked deep and debated just clipping my jighead but was able to extract it without any noticeable damage. Upon release I placed the bass in tail first and let go only to watch the fish make a tail walking jump right into the Red Eye Shad I had hanging over the side of the boat (yes, I should know better). Well, if bass have a chin that’s where it wound up double hooked the second time. So, I snatched my rod before it went overboard, unhooked my bass again with no visible damage and re-released it (only recorded it in the log once though as that would be greedy and unethical to count it twice). I did apologize to the fish as it was the right thing to do and it swam away in a hurry, minus the leap. For its sake I actually hope it does not find my bait in the future no matter how big it grows as I feel kind of bad for its ordeal.
My apologies to this unfortunate “sorta twice caught” bass
The Shirt – This marked the final day for one of my favorite fishing shirts. For me, fishing is rife with favorites whether it be a hat, a lure or a productive spot on the water. Well, me and this shirt go back a ways but it now must join the collection of other “good luck” shirts that have worn thin over the years. Perhaps someday I will pursue writing more on the specific shirt and the general topic but for now just want to say “Thanks” to the holey tatter that Julie said that she wouldn’t wash again should it show up in the laundry.
Rain or shine the old “lucky shirt” was a winner
Five years later, I’m getting around to the “Lucky Shirt” thing with a yearlong project. It’s also time for topwater baits and a Senko wacky rig presentation as the weeds take over some waters. Hard to believe May is about to come to a close. Stay tuned for June as we’ve got a couple fish already in for next week’s Top 5 Update and I hope to include a fishing report or two in the near future. Talk to you later. Troy