Strip Mine Notes – April 13

There’s more to a fishing trip than simply how many fish you catch. Thus, the April 13 strip mine hike for me and Brent needed a Part II to cover the outing. Read on for a batch of extra notes from our time on the water.


Species Title – While our target species was the largemouth bass, if you have a lure in the water, you have a shot at an “accident.” Brent and I both landed crappies to go along with our bass but I was able to claim the species title with four (largemouth bass, crappie, bluegill, and green sunfish).

Tick Title – The annoying pests were ready for action, and we encountered a few as we made our way through the weeds. Brent outpaced me six ticks to one on this outing.

Torn Trailers – Between a batch of little bass and some solid crappie, several missed strikes resulted in losing the tails of the swimbait trailers I paired with my chatterbait. There is something to be said about using a stinger/trailer hook, but I am just not a fan. I suppose it may cost me a catch or two, but I always figure if a quality bass wants your lure bad enough, it is going to get it.

Frame 352 – As we made our way along opposite sides of a strip mine cut, I glanced over and saw that Brent was snapping a picture in my direction. I thought, “That’s a good idea” and took a moment to shoot a couple of my own as he made his way along a tall ridge. When we later got within speaking distance, Brent confirmed that he had taken a pic and then sent it may way. It wasn’t until that night that I looked at the pic and had the same thought that Brent would text a few days later.


The “Floors” data on steps app always amuses me after a strip mine trek. If you know, you know.

Top Bass – Brent landed a 2-4 about forty-five minutes into our trip but it was not the largest bass that we observed. That honor belonged to a fellow angler that I crossed paths with well off the beaten path. He showed me the fish but was unsure of its weight as he did not have a scale. When I offered up mine, he was excited to find out just what he had caught. I told him that I thought it may go six pounds as I clamped the clip down on the lip of his bass. I then turned the display in the angler’s direction to make sure he had the first view. He exclaimed, “5.14, that’s the biggest bass I’ve ever caught!” I congratulated him and never looked at the scale myself. However, I started thinking later that 5.14 (or 5 lbs. 2 oz.) seemed a bit shy. In looking at my scale later, the settings were indeed pounds and ounces and not decimal. Since I gave the young man one of my cards, if you are out there, I believe that you should tell the tale as a “five-pound fourteen-ounce bass” and not “5.14” if that was the initial interpretation.

I took a look at my scale settings when I got home and I think the fellow may have misinterpreted the reading, thus missing a few ounces

I was worn out by the end of the day as I wound up with a substantial hike back to the truck. It included marshy spots that were nearly over my boots courtesy of the recent rains. Early the next morning, I woke up with a serious cramp in my left hamstring and dealt with a sore heel when I got out of bed. Once I got up and started moving around though, all was well. I’ve been pulling this sort of stunt for a long time, and the rewards still outweigh the travails. I am certain that I will return as the year rolls on. Talk to you later. Troy

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