Monday, November 17, 2014

Fishing Report for Guntersville 11/15/14

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I really struggled on whether or not to make a post today about the fishing this weekend. After all, *I think*, and may be I am wrong, that people come here to see how I caught them, check out the pics and the vids. So, when days like Saturday come along, and they frequently do, I find myself thinking "there isn't anything to write about, so I guess I won't. "

So, if you are only here to gain some knowledge on how to catch fish (though I look at the Fish of 2014 page and snicker), then you are in for disappointment and you can go ahead and click the red "x" in the upper right hand corner. 

But, I started thinking....why did I start this blog in the first place? Well, it was because I was so tired of reading all these glowing reviews on the Bass Fishing Homepage, or on social media. Heck, when I first started fishing Guntersville in 2008, it took something like 3 trips to catch a fish. I started reading the reports. They were kinda vague, but they would give me specific baits and usually areas and techniques (yes, I realize how naive this is, in retrospect).  They never seemed to work, and that was as frustrating as not catching fish. Here I was looking at these pictures and reading these reviews about how easy it was. In fact, I went out and hired one of the guides on Guntersville because I was just SURE that I was doing it wrong and I needed help. We caught 3 fish that day and weren't given any excuses by this guide. All he did was ask for his swimbait hooks back, which he had loaned me, and asked for a tip. Then he dumped us off at the dock and took his next clients. 

And that very next week I started this blog.

If you are an avid reader of this blog, then you know that 2014 was a pretty rough year. We did well in the 2014 Tournament Fishing, but these were little local derbys and nothing more. By and large, numbers were down across the board, but none more so than on Guntersville. The last 2 months, especially. we fished the Spro Frog Tournament and caught 2 fish all day with a total of 3 bites. We were back on the lake the next weekend for a club tournament and managed 2 bites and no fish. It wasn't just us. If you had 2 measuring fish in the Spro Tournament, you cashed a check. out of the 200 or so boats, there were entire flights of boats who failed to weigh in a fish. Same in the club tournament. If you had ANY fish, you got a check. But, we figured it was hot and the fish were in a funk. 

Finally the temps cracked and most fishermen figured the fishing would fire up. After the first few nights in the 30s, social media started blowing up. The guides were reporting that the fishing was GREAT and that everyone needed to get in to it. I tried to ignore the obvious long-arming in some of the pics, or why some of the pictures I was seeing were borderline 15 inch fish. But, I know how hard it is to get good vids and pics when everything else is going on. 

On Friday night, Jamie from The Bait Tackle and Grill at Goosepond made an interesting post  on the book of faces. 

"Here is a true fishing report for lake Guntersville... The bass, despite what you see on the Internet, have been very slow for the past couple months. Somehow we missed our fall weather and went straight to winter. Of course a very few guys have found some fish but no one is wearing them out. "

There are few people in the fishing industry that I trust to shoot me straight, and Jamie is one of them. There were some interesting comments to go along with his post, including some admissions that live bait is being used. But that's neither here nor there. The reason I was looking for info was because we had a club tournament on Saturday. Josh and I joined a new club and this would be our first tournament with them, though we know several members from the Ditto Wildcats. So, we pull up at Seibold, get the boat in the water, and get after it. 

7 hours later we didn't have a bite. Not one. No nudges. Not blowups. We didn't even see any action. We covered the whole Seibold area and threw a plethora of baits in all different depths. Due to a recently repaired and untested lower unit, we didn't want to run anywhere else, and we didn't think we needed to. Maybe we should have. 

I will spare you any longer of a read then you need. We had either 10 or 12 boats, half those didn't weigh a fish. There was 1 limit for 8 pounds, something I didn't think was possible with a 15 inch limit. 2nd place was 2 fish for 6 something pounds, which featured a 5.5 pounder that was easily TWICE as big as any other fish weighed in that day. Of the boats that weighed in fish, I didn't see any with more than 2 and they were always squeakers. 

Don't misunderstand me, I don't really feel better that we didn't catch any based upon the lack of success of others. I try and avoid comparing myself to other fishermen, after all, we have found the most tournament success when others struggle. I also don't want you to think that I expected success because of what I read on the internet. After all, you can lead yourself to believe the earth is flat if you go read the Flat Earth Theorist webpage. 

But, the title says fishing report, so that's what you are getting. Right now, the fishing is incredibly tough. So tough that I wouldn't bother. And that's hard for me to say. I know. I know. Deer season is here, the lake has cleared off. I am just might find another lake. But, like The Dude says..