Monday my fishing plans went astray. I had to finish up a lawn job I had going in Monarch Ridge. With that done I came home and worked with Susan on some things around the house.
Monday night I called Charlie Hill and said let’s go fishing Tuesday. Charlie was agreeable and was at our ramp about 6:30 a.m. We loaded his gear and left the cove.
Making a short run to the back of Little Mineral we started down the west bank. We each thought we might have had a bite but couldn’t prove it. Just before we got to the end of it a big school of stripers began breaking water and knocking shad in the air.
These were big fish. As we were bass fishing we just kept looking at the breaking fish. It was too much to resist so I put the motor on high hum and headed for the action. When we got to where they had been of course they were gone, or maybe not — my Rebel Pop R hit the water, I popped it once and had a striper on.
Charlie was casting too. I got in a hurry on my second cast and backlashed my reel. I was picking out the bird nest and letting the line out in the water to keep it from tangling up in the boat. All at once I had another striper on. As my reel wouldn’t turn, I started winding my line and the fish up on my rod, don’t ask why.
It takes a long time to wind up 30 feet of line on the rod blank. I finally got the fish to the back of the boat despite still turning the rod. After all that just as I almost got it close enough to lip, it got off. The stripers left and after fishing another bank with only one big crappie I caught that hit my Booyah Spinnerbait, we left for different water.
Every place we stopped it was the same: no fish. Finally, I moved to some boathouses where I caught bass this time of year. A pass down one side of it had me get three fish on, two I got in the boat and released; the other got away on his own. By then it was getting warm and being gentlemen of leisure who like it cooler, we headed to my cove and into a boathouse.
Bass might not have been eager to bite but the crappie were. As fast as we dropped our jigs down we were pulling up a crappie. When the bite slowed we moved to another boathouse slip and the bite was on again. We used up all of my crappie nibbles. Charlie to the rescue — he had a bottle of nibbles in his truck and we started catching the fish again. Bass fishing wasn’t good but the crappie made up for it, plus it was a beautiful day to be on the water, until it got hot.
Wednesday morning Ginger and I made our usual trip to the boat ramp. While we were there a man fishing close to our ramp got me to doing what I do best: talking. James Morgan was his name and when I said I was 75 he made me feel young and said he was 82. He was alone in his Bass Tracker and fishing up a storm.
He never stopped casting as we talked. I asked was he kin to a Mike Morgan I worked with in the fire dept. He said no, then asked if I was the J.B. Webb who writes for the Herald Democrat? When I said yes, he then said that must be Ginger.
He told me he loved my articles and it was the first thing he looked for in the paper on Fridays. I thanked him and said my articles were sometimes funnier than what you get to read.
My weekly unintentional event. I was cleaning three lots Wednesday afternoon, picking up limbs where I was going to mow. I had put a one-pound hammer and pinch bar in my cart I was pulling behind my mower. I was tossing the limbs over a fence next to a creek.
I was heaving them out when I saw the one-pound hammer mixed in with the limbs. It made it into the creek that had about a foot of water in it. No problem: I fought through the poison ivy and got to the creek bed. I could see the hammer in the water. Not thinking it through, I knew I was wearing waterproof shoes. Well they are only waterproof to the ankles, and the hammer was in a foot or more of water. Ever climb a muddy vine-covered bank with two shoes full of water? Here’s my sign.
Last Saturday saw Joe Copelands Future Bass Tournament go out of Alberta Creek Marina. He had 77 boats entered. Fishing was good to say the least with 55 five-fish limits coming in. There were only 12 zeroes; the rest of the field had from 1-4 fish.
First place went to Derrick Klase with five fish going 20.18 pounds and big bass at 6.95 pounds, second was Spencer and Homer McAlester with five fish at 18.77 pounds, third was Drain-Ferguson with five fish totaling 18.48 pounds, fourth was Smith-Haden with five fish at 18.41 pounds and fifth was Jerry and Jereme Dietz with five fish at 18.17 pounds.
Not bad numbers for a tournament that started small and is growing every year.
Fishing is still very good — put down your smart phones and video games and give it a try. Tip with the water high is Hagerman is a place that should be bank-fishing friendly and have some fish in its many creeks.