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First Bass of 2024


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Here's my story:

 

 A couple of months ago my 20 year old MH Ugly Stik broke at the plastic connector that holds the reel and I tried some things like zip ties but they always got in the way of where I hold it so stuck it in a corner. I decided to try some athletic tape the other day to hold the reel on and found an old Shakespeare reel that wasn't being used and taped it up. I had a bunch of 6lb mono and stuck that on there. Went out to the pond to give it a shot with a Creme stickbait (Baby Bass type of color) and a 3/0 EWG weightless. The rod and reel worked well enough and I hooked into a decent bass after about an hour of nothing. It made a beeline straight to the weeds at shore and got tangled up pretty well. I tried to lift him and 10lbs of weeds at the same time to get him on shore and the line snapped. The fish was stunned and fell onto the weeds at shore and I had to walk into the pond to grab him and get my bait and hook back. He was fine and swam off. I have a pic but the fish is on the ground next to my redneck engineered rod and I know how some social media sites are about posting a pic of a fish on the ground so don't want to get hollered at here for it, but I didn't have much choice.  🙂 Caught one more after that one so it was a decent enough winter day.    

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3 hours ago, Susky River Rat said:

I want to do the catch a bass every month

I've succeeded the last four years.  Plymouth/Cape Cod, MA haven't frozen me out.

 

I'm headed out today.  Good luck in '24.

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@omegapd I’m glad there’s other fishermen like me.

• Ugly stiks

• fixing it with tape

• using whatever is available 

• Going in the water after the fish

• laying fish on the ground momentarily ( and admitting it )

 The only difference is that I would have pictured the fish and not feel bad about it !

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Like @gimruis, it'll be months before I can contribute to this thread. My first bass in 2023 was mid-April, but if I fish from shore, I might manage a March bass. The problem with Maine shorelines is that they aren't parks. They're boulders and trees. 

 

2 hours ago, omegapd said:

I decided to try some athletic tape the other day to hold the reel on and found an old Shakespeare reel that wasn't being used and taped it up.

 

I own a rod that was built for taping a reel to it, i.e. no reel seat that locked the reel to the rod. 

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6 minutes ago, ol'crickety said:

it'll be months before I can contribute to this thread. My first bass in 2023 was mid-April

As of right now I won't be able to legally target one until at least mid May, even if we get an early ice out (which looks likely).

 

The wheels are in motion for a year-round C & R bass season though.  I am not sure when they plan to institute that though.

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1 minute ago, gimruis said:

As of right now I won't be able to legally target one until at least mid May, even if we get an early ice out (which looks likely).

 

The wheels are in motion for a year-round C & R bass season though.  I am not sure when they plan to institute that though.

 

Mid-May is too long for an angler to wait. I hope they extend your season. Northern Maine is like Minnesota. You have to wait and wait and wait to fish. 

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I don't anticipate any openings in my schedule to allow me time to bass fish until April.  I'm sure to get some big bass then, but they will be post spawn, and not at their full potential on the scale.  On a more positive note, I will probably be hooked up to a marlin before the this week is over.

    Good luck to all those anglers fortunate enough to catch bass early in the new year.

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8 minutes ago, ol'crickety said:

Mid-May is too long for an angler to wait.

 

Until about 10 years ago, it actually used to be the last Saturday in May.  They moved it up 2 weeks.

 

I believe some locations in Canada they cannot target a bass until June.

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16 minutes ago, king fisher said:

I don't anticipate any openings in my schedule to allow me time to bass fish until April.  I'm sure to get some big bass then, but they will be post spawn, and not at their full potential on the scale.  On a more positive note, I will probably be hooked up to a marlin before the this week is over.

    Good luck to all those anglers fortunate enough to catch bass early in the new year.

 

The bass YOU catch are worth the wait!

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46 minutes ago, N Florida Mike said:

@omegapd I’m glad there’s other fishermen like me.

• Ugly stiks

• fixing it with tape

• using whatever is available 

• Going in the water after the fish

• laying fish on the ground momentarily ( and admitting it )

 The only difference is that I would have pictured the fish and not feel bad about it !

Thanks Mike. That's the warmest welcome I could have received. I signed up for this forum many many years ago and posted a couple of times and then went on to other things. Fishing has always been one of my main hobbies, but sporadically, and I never spent much money on it. That old Ugly Stik is the most expensive rod I've ever bought. I also have a Pfleuger reel and the rest of the stuff has been given to me or picked up at junk stores, flea markets and WalMart. They all work well enough for what I do. I have two kids in college. Gotta save everywhere I can. 

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46 minutes ago, ol'crickety said:

I own a rod that was built for taping a reel to it, i.e. no reel seat that locked the reel to the rod. 

 

 

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3 hours ago, king fisher said:

I don't anticipate any openings in my schedule to allow me time to bass fish until April. 

 

 

If my schedule allows me to throw a cast anywhere other than may backyard before early March, it will be a miracle.  Double-miracle if I can get out more than 2 or 3 times before the last week in April.

 

And whether we actually have open water whenever I next have time to go is a always a crap shoot.

 

 

3 hours ago, gimruis said:

 

Until about 10 years ago, it actually used to be the last Saturday in May.  They moved it up 2 weeks.

 

I believe some locations in Canada they cannot target a bass until June.

 

We opened up for C&R year round statewide for bass round in 2015. Before then, the season was like yours used to be.

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On 1/2/2024 at 11:59 AM, MIbassyaker said:

We opened up for C&R year round statewide for bass round in 2015. Before then, the season was like yours used to be.

Yep, and then Wisconsin did the same a few years ago.

 

We're always a couple steps behind the curveball over here.  I am confident that there will be a full continuous C & R season by 2025 here.

 

The regs here are to protect the sacred walleye.  They really have nothing to do with bass.

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7 hours ago, roadwarrior said:

 

 

 

7 hours ago, ol'crickety said:

@roadwarrior, I was hoping someone would second what I said because it does sound a little kooky.

It sounds totally normal to me!
 

Most of my 18 ice fishing rods are Tennessee handles and need to be taped on.  I have found that the silicone rescue tape they sell works great for that.  It only sticks to itself and is tough as nails.   That way when you take it off, it doesn’t stick to your cork and wreck it.  It also doesn’t leave any sticky residue.   I like that you can position your reel at any location that is comfortable for you as well.  

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8 hours ago, gimruis said:

 

I believe some locations in Canada they cannot target a bass until June.

 

NYS was like this until a few years ago. Third saturday in June. Now we have a year round C&R but true open season is June 15th until December 1st.

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