Monday, July 7, 2014

Fishing Report for Wheeler 7/3/14

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It was another Thursday, which could only mean one thing...Thursday Night Wildcat out of Ditto. This one was a bonus cause I didn't really think we would fish it. But, things came together.

If you have kept up with our Wildcat record this hasn't been very good. In previous years, we had won a lot of checks with small fish. We would routinely get 3rd place with a 6 pound bag of dinks. We just couldn't get the kicker! This year has been completely different. We have caught nice fish after nice fish including 4+ pound largemouths and a lot of 3 pound smallies. Take last week, for example. We caught only 3 fish and were the first out of the money. Of that 3 was a nice 3.3 pound smallie! You can read about that tournament here. In the last month, we have been right there...OH SO CLOSE. Josh even cashed a check weeks back without me while only weighing in 2 fish!

And that's the other thing. The fishing has been brutal. That end of the river used to be easy to fish. But, you might go all day without a measuring fish. At first we thought it was the lack of current. But, the last 2 weeks have featured current exceeding 54,000 CFM at times!

Well, we got to it. We started off fishing our "big fish" hole, as we have done for the last several years.

I was throwing a Strike King 6XD, grinding it through some rocks, when something knocked the bait sideways. As I set the hook, the line snapped. That is one of the first times this year I have broken one off. I tied on another 6XD and went back to casting it. I figured I had knicked the line and broken it. Not that it would be outside the possibilities, I am using 8 pound test. I like my cranks to get DDDEEEPPP. The 6XD certainly does that!

A few casts later and one thumped it. But, as I slow played it, it made a hard charge and I knew what it was....a nasty ole drum. I worked it to the boat, fished out my pliers and got my crank back. I retied and we spent another 30 minutes without a bump.

We jetted upriver to a spot that we have caught *some* fish on, including last weeks video on the perfect quick release:
Josh was throwing a plastic of some sort and quickly boated a nice 2 pound smallie off a rock point. A few casts later, I drug a C-rig off the backside of the same point and had one nail it. As I fought it, I knew it was a trash fish. I didn't expect to bring the mother of all gars to the boat. Heck, it was bigger than Josh's gar from last week! Man, those gar must like C-rigs!
The spot shut down. We fished some bluffy areas without much of a hit. I was stuck on some rocks while throwing a shakey head. As I drove the trolling motor to retrieve it, Josh was flipping some brush. And, he flipped up a Wheeler monster! This thing was MASSIVE. We figured it was at least 4.5 pounds. So, we had 2 fish. That wasn't going to win anything, but both were quality fish. All we needed were 3 dinks. So, we headed to a place we KNEW held dinks....Butler Basin. 

On one of my first casts with a Sammy, the wind blew it ACROSS the shore. As soon as the bait hit the other side of the shore, a fish nailed the sammy. I popped the rod as hard as I could and the fish came flying over the point. Josh made the remark that he was wondering how I would get the fish in the boat, but he sure didn't expect that! 

We didn't get another bite and we headed to weigh in. We figured we MIGHT get big fish. We weighed in our 2 fish for 6 pounds, including the 4.85 largemouth. And no one else weighed in. 

We were 2nd with big fish! Though we lost to 11 pounds in 4 fish, no one else weighed in a limit. In fact, while talking to the guys who run the tournament, they informed us that there hadn't been a limit weighed in weeks! Wow! But, we will take a check however we can take it!