In an attempt to prefish for tomorrow's Wildcat Tournament, I brought the boat with me to work. I planned on putting in at the Army Recreation area on Redstone Arsenal. It has a small, but nice, ramp with nice docks. After all the rain the last few days, I knew it would be muddy. I was hoping that the high water would push the fish real shallow. Usually the fish will run (or swim?) shallow to take advantage of feeding ground they obviously can't usually get to. This would give me the opportunity to fish wood cover, which I rarely get to do on Guntersville. I have been wanting to work on my jig and plastic throwing, as I don't use them often.
Dad didn't want to fish and Josh had hockey practice. I called up my Buddy TJ, who work in composites on contract with NASA. We have had several graduate classes together and we hang out when we can. He has fished with me several times and usually does better than me..LOL! I offered him the back deck and he agreed to meet me at the ramp. Immediately, we were awestruck by how high the water really was. It was over the fixed dock by about 6 inches and was almost completely over the rip-rap banks. The water was almost brown. If the water level had been close to average, I might have decided not to fish, but with the water up and a visible current in the channel, I thought it was worth the try. The water was so far up that the ramp was almost submerged and the tailgate of the truck was almost in the water before the boat slid off the trailer.
I wanted to fish the cove that the ramp is in, so we started out casting around the points, up shallow over the rip-rap. It might have been TJ's first cast, but he snagged a NICE fish. It ran right at him and he couldn't keep up to it. The fist shook loose. We spent a few minutes probing and I wanted to try a new method my friend Bertus had told me about. We sat just inside the current, threw out a spinner bait into it, and let the current pull it around the bend. Great tactic. Just didn't work.
The only thing I could do was try to maneuver into eddys. But the current created such a low pressure zone behind the structure, that it would suck the boat into the banks! At least we could sit still against the bank. So we fished every eddy we could find. I found that the fish seemed to be doing the opposite of what I thought they would do (go figure) we marked fish by the hundreds on the Hummingbird 798 sidescan
I fired the motor up and ran us above the launch cove to the upper rip rap bank. On the bank is a secondary ramp, which I assume is for kayaks. First or second cast, hooked a good one. I saw him flash right at the boat. A solid 2.5lb fish. He shook off....somehow. I normally don't have that problem with my fiberglass cranking stick. Next cast, snagged some one's old line. Ugg. But as I fished it in, I noticed that it was attached to a lure in a tree. SCORE!
The temperature started to plummet and I knew our chances were slim. So, we ran upriver and called it a day. Any day on the water is a good day. Any day you catch fish is a good day. It's always a good day when you can drive 5 minutes from your office and catch fish!