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Thank you for all the prayers, good thoughts for my wife. We both are very grateful and thankful for all of your awesome support, thank you. I saved you guys from having to see the pictures of me in my boxers lol. I have not gotten new waders yet and am tired of my pants being soaking wet after I go in to get a lure back.

 

 I don’t know what happened but last year something clicked with me catching smallmouth, before that I never had luck catching them. As of lately the bigger largemouth have been hiding from me. I like the change and variety of new places that I am fishing though.

 

my grandpa was a big influence in getting me started with fishing as a kid and I miss him dearly. Although I feel like he is still right there with me when I am fishing all the time. I learned early to never give up and keep persevering and to learn from my mistakes and constantly improve. There is so much uncertainty in my life at this point with everything that is going on in my families life, but when I get the time I am going fishing to find my peace and pass on what I can to my wife and kids.

 

thanks again everyone it means the world to us ?

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Had 20 minutes before work to make a few cast and got one on the homemade mini bladed jig.

20230517-082717.jpg

 

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Thanks, @Alex from GA!

 

Great photo, @Bluebasser86. The colors are so vivid. It reminds me of the photography in Gray's Sporting Journal. 

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Spent a few hours at Big Pine Island Lake, notable for being where the MI State Record largemouth of 11.94lb was caught........in 1934. 

 

Like everyone else who has fished Big Pine in the 89 years since, I did not catch a state record. 

 

Still, as lakes for the area go, it fishes OK.  I caught nine, including this 3-pounder as the sun had just begun peeking through trees:

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And a couple of not-yet-3s:
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A weightless Zoom super fluke did most of the work.

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You guys are nailing the photos...and the fish! I go fishing again on Friday morning. The wind right now is 18 mph and tomorrow morning's temps will be in the mid-thirties. C'mon, Summer! 

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There's no better bed than a riverbank and no better bass than a river smallie.

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1 hour ago, Jeff Zurawski said:

Very pretty 20.5" fish I caught on Monday during a 4-day/3-night River Camping Adventure.

 

zXhRuMjl.jpg

That’s a beauty Jeff. ?

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Had a really fun and interesting day on the water yesterday and felt like it might be cool to relay the info to you all!

 

Yesterday Jake and I put in at about 3:45 after he finished his homework and chores after getting home from school.  We only had about 3 hours to put something together having to be off the water at 7:30 by lake regulations.

 

The wind was blowing out of the southwest into the rip rap and it was mottled sun/clouds.

 

Probably my favorite fishing conditions.  I have done amazingly well on jigs and on moving baits on days like these so we left the marina with Jerkbaits, crankbaits, swim jigs, pencil poppers and lots of other 'windy sunny' baits tied on.

 

We fished the rip rap with squarebills and jigs and jerkbaits and didn't get bit and decided to make a bee line for a new hump I had identified earlier this week on Google Earth.

 

The hump held less fish than I expected, which looking back, doesn't surprise me.  Seems like more of an ideal winter hump being that it's very far from spawning locations and near the deepest water in the lake.  We couldn't get a bite and made our way to the adjacent mainlake point.

 

The point sticks out into the wind and the wind was blowing a healthy current through all of the flooded cover and immidiately I could see shad schools glowing just beneath the surface in the waters just off the cover all along the bank.  Then I started to see bass come up out of nowhere attacking the schools like tuna in the ocean!

 

I informed Jake, it was go time and be ready.

 

We threw swim jigs, underpins, little swimbaits, crankbaits, jerkbaits, walking topwaters, poppers, Texas rigs, glide baits....worked them fast and slow.  Could literally see fish eating around the boat.

 

Then it finally dawned on me.

 

Windy day.  Sun.  Little schools of shad.

 

Spinnerbait.

 

THIS was where the day began.  With 1.5 hours left to go, I tied on my beat up Siebert Cosmic double white chartreuse willow spinner 1/2 oz where the skirt came off so I have to rig rage bugs to keep it planing straight up and down and I pitched it haphazardly to the nearest laydown.

 

I SAW the bass ANNIHILATE the bait.  First bass.

 

Nice chunky 2 lber.

 

Toss my spinner bait to the next piece of cover.  Slowly rolling it by.  BOOM!

 

Same thing.  Nice little 1.5 lber.

 

We went down the bank in the wind where I saw boats and kayaks and all sorts of fishing happening and we got bit on EVERY single piece of submerged wood we brought those Spinnerbaits by.

 

I jumped off more fish than I caught yesterday but boated 6 in one hour before we had to leave.

 

It felt AMAZING to figure out the magical bait for the day and pattern it and catch a limit all in one hour.

 

I even threw my spinnerbait at a stick that had washed into the rip rap that was just isolated and sticking up near the marina to see if I was crazy and caught one more before we packed up.

 

Once we were on the pattern I tried to put other baits that theoretically should have worked into areas that I was getting bit over and over and over again on every cast and they wouldn't touch it and then I'd put the spinner bait in there and get bit again.

 

It was the ONLY bait they would touch.

 

Didn't catch any fish over two lbs and it only lasted an hour before I had to leave but I had an absolute ball!

 

Compress_20230518_095541_1288.thumb.jpg.1488e4296182073fedee837400573b9e.jpg

Compress_20230518_095541_1895.jpg

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Well done, Pat. You observed. You deduced. But most of all, you persevered. 

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1 minute ago, ol'crickety said:

Well done, Pat. You observed. You deduced. But most of all, you persevered. 

 

 

I think yesterday was one of those days that really really hammered home something you hear all the time but it's hard to internalize and practice with discipline:

 

Throw what THEY want, not what YOU want.

 

I am very guilty of the age old bass fishing act of hubris: 'oh yeah today is gonna be a jig day 100%' ....... aaaand skunk. ??

 

I am trying to be more 'fish the conditions/read the fish' and less 'oh yeah, I just KNOW this will work' about my approach and I never in a million years thought 'Im gonna whack em on a spinnerbait today...until the lake sorta showed me the clues.  I had to be paying attention and looking for them though for SURE.

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On 5/17/2023 at 12:45 PM, ol'crickety said:

You guys are nailing the photos...and the fish! I go fishing again on Friday morning. The wind right now is 18 mph and tomorrow morning's temps will be in the mid-thirties. C'mon, Summer! 

Kent gave me a tip on the weatherman......if he says winds will be 5-10 MPH, add those together for the TRUTH!

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On 5/16/2023 at 2:46 PM, Jmurphy87 said:

I didn’t have to go to work today, wife had a biopsy scheduled for today. I got to go fishing after the hospital came out of lockdown and they took her back for the procedure. First cast caught the 2.16lb smallmouth again in a different spot this time. Cast up along the rocks with a 3/8 oz bullet weight and a jackal chunk craw 3.5 in black and blue. Working it back and felt the tap and set the hook and landed it. I wonder if it is the same one from Saturday. 
 

I then headed to the pond without my steel leader attached and caught the small large mouth on the same bait. I had a different hit and reeled down and swung hard. I heard the line snap like a gunshot and knew that I hooked a pike. I then tied on my leader and caught the tiny pike on a lipless crank popping it out of grass. It went dead after that. 
 

I think that they are getting wise to moving baits now and I seem to get more hits on slower presentations it seems, overall it was a good 2 hours in the end.

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Prayers for you and your wife. Hope it's nothing serious. It's always scary just the same.

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13 minutes ago, Blue Raider Bob said:

Prayers for you and your wife. Hope it's nothing serious. It's always scary just the same.

Thank you, it was a liver biopsy. I don’t have a clue what is going on really. Seems like since she had thyroid cancer and surgery a couple years back that there’s been something going on. Hopefully they are on top of the ball, it seems good but we will see. Only time will tell, at least she is not working so she has all the time she needs to relax and recover. Keeps me busy with our 2 year old and tending to the small wound site. Thanks again it means the world to us.

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3 minutes ago, Jmurphy87 said:

Thank you, it was a liver biopsy. I don’t have a clue what is going on really. Seems like since she had thyroid cancer and surgery a couple years back that there’s been something going on. Hopefully they are on top of the ball, it seems good but we will see. Only time will tell, at least she is not working so she has all the time she needs to relax and recover. Keeps me busy with our 2 year old and tending to the small wound site. Thanks again it means the world to us.

 

Murph, I hope good thoughts amount to something because I'm thinking a heap of good thoughts for your wife, you, and your two-year-old. 

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20 minutes ago, ol'crickety said:

 

Murph, I hope good thoughts amount to something because I'm thinking a heap of good thoughts for your wife, you, and your two-year-old. 

Thank you, good thoughts always amount to something positive. I think that she will be perfectly fine and healthy. I have the feeling like they are just going through the testing process because of elevated levels of sorts. I am not a fan of hospitals, which is very odd considering that I wanted to become a doctor someday. But some odd things happened in life and that changed that possibility for the present moment. I think that knowing you will be somewhere for a set period of time and when you will be going back home makes the difference. I will definitely get back out when I can to try and work on some new bodies of water. I have to wait until I get my wife her license for the year and she will be out there catching them again too. Thank you for the good thoughts my wife and I appreciate it.

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54 minutes ago, Jmurphy87 said:

Thank you, it was a liver biopsy. I don’t have a clue what is going on really. Seems like since she had thyroid cancer and surgery a couple years back that there’s been something going on. Hopefully they are on top of the ball, it seems good but we will see. Only time will tell, at least she is not working so she has all the time she needs to relax and recover. Keeps me busy with our 2 year old and tending to the small wound site. Thanks again it means the world to us.

Prayers for y'all here too. Those things can get you down if you let the worry get to you, but you seem to have a great outlook. I know getting out to fish helps me reset my head when I'm stressed. Keep taking care of the family & hang in there.

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6 hours ago, Pat Brown said:

Had a really fun and interesting day on the water yesterday and felt like it might be cool to relay the info to you all!

 

Yesterday Jake and I put in at about 3:45 after he finished his homework and chores after getting home from school.  We only had about 3 hours to put something together having to be off the water at 7:30 by lake regulations.

 

The wind was blowing out of the southwest into the rip rap and it was mottled sun/clouds.

 

Probably my favorite fishing conditions.  I have done amazingly well on jigs and on moving baits on days like these so we left the marina with Jerkbaits, crankbaits, swim jigs, pencil poppers and lots of other 'windy sunny' baits tied on.

 

We fished the rip rap with squarebills and jigs and jerkbaits and didn't get bit and decided to make a bee line for a new hump I had identified earlier this week on Google Earth.

 

The hump held less fish than I expected, which looking back, doesn't surprise me.  Seems like more of an ideal winter hump being that it's very far from spawning locations and near the deepest water in the lake.  We couldn't get a bite and made our way to the adjacent mainlake point.

 

The point sticks out into the wind and the wind was blowing a healthy current through all of the flooded cover and immidiately I could see shad schools glowing just beneath the surface in the waters just off the cover all along the bank.  Then I started to see bass come up out of nowhere attacking the schools like tuna in the ocean!

 

I informed Jake, it was go time and be ready.

 

We threw swim jigs, underpins, little swimbaits, crankbaits, jerkbaits, walking topwaters, poppers, Texas rigs, glide baits....worked them fast and slow.  Could literally see fish eating around the boat.

 

Then it finally dawned on me.

 

Windy day.  Sun.  Little schools of shad.

 

Spinnerbait.

 

THIS was where the day began.  With 1.5 hours left to go, I tied on my beat up Siebert Cosmic double white chartreuse willow spinner 1/2 oz where the skirt came off so I have to rig rage bugs to keep it planing straight up and down and I pitched it haphazardly to the nearest laydown.

 

I SAW the bass ANNIHILATE the bait.  First bass.

 

Nice chunky 2 lber.

 

Toss my spinner bait to the next piece of cover.  Slowly rolling it by.  BOOM!

 

Same thing.  Nice little 1.5 lber.

 

We went down the bank in the wind where I saw boats and kayaks and all sorts of fishing happening and we got bit on EVERY single piece of submerged wood we brought those Spinnerbaits by.

 

I jumped off more fish than I caught yesterday but boated 6 in one hour before we had to leave.

 

It felt AMAZING to figure out the magical bait for the day and pattern it and catch a limit all in one hour.

 

I even threw my spinnerbait at a stick that had washed into the rip rap that was just isolated and sticking up near the marina to see if I was crazy and caught one more before we packed up.

 

Once we were on the pattern I tried to put other baits that theoretically should have worked into areas that I was getting bit over and over and over again on every cast and they wouldn't touch it and then I'd put the spinner bait in there and get bit again.

 

It was the ONLY bait they would touch.

 

Didn't catch any fish over two lbs and it only lasted an hour before I had to leave but I had an absolute ball!

 

Compress_20230518_095541_1288.thumb.jpg.1488e4296182073fedee837400573b9e.jpg

Compress_20230518_095541_1895.jpg

@TnRiver46 will never believe this story.

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1 hour ago, Fishlegs said:

Prayers for y'all here too. Those things can get you down if you let the worry get to you, but you seem to have a great outlook. I know getting out to fish helps me reset my head when I'm stressed. Keep taking care of the family & hang in there.

Thank you me and the wife appreciate it. Life is like the weather we can want one thing and get another. Just like the storms and bad weather that happens it is all beautiful in its own special way and serves a purpose even if we don’t understand it at the time. The ups and downs are what make life special, we just need to take a step back and realize it sometimes.

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Definitely realizing that I missed the spawn this spring.  I think the fish came up in early April when we had that week of 80 degree temps and never left the shallows. 
 

fished long lake Ionia county.  Water temp 62 degrees.  Pretty much anything anybody wanted to throw today would work.  It’s almost like 2 differnt lakes in one.  1/2 the lake is 5-8 feet deep and weedy than the other half is 20-30 ft deep with no weeds. 
 

Seemed like most of the bigger fish were sitting right outside the weed edge right before the drop to 20 ft.  I caught my first spinner bait fish up in 5ft of water a nice 2.4 lber.   Caught a decent  fish on my new DD22.  Caught one  t-rig summer craw shimme stick.  Caught 3-4 on a Berkley max scent tube on 3/8 oz tube jig.  Pulled the last 3 fish out of the same area in 9ft of water next to the weed edge.

 

I always wonder why I abandoned fishing tubes.  They always catch fish. 

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