Results 1 to 8 of 8

Thread: Fall wrap-up!

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Posts
    109

    Default Fall wrap-up!

    Hey guys, I've been able to get out a decent amount this fall on my off days and all I can say is that this warm fall has been great for the fishing (but bad for posting).
    For starters, I got on a fall striper run that was nothing short of spectacular. The most important factor when fishing the lakes in the fall is finding shad. If you can find the shad, you can have a really great time.

    We have a huge amount of threadfin shad in most of the lakes around here, and once you find them balled up and close to the surface, the big fish will eventually show up. In the mornings and evenings, or on cloudy days, you can do well with surface flies like Crease Flies or Wiggle Minnows. If it's sunny, a clouser that gets down below the bait is hard to beat. I typically use a full sinking line for my subsurface fishing so that I can get down deep if the fish are down there. This will also allow you to use a weightless fly like a Puglisi or Deceiver if that's what you prefer.
    This largemouth was in a gang of white bass one evening, gorging on shad on a shall flat. I caught him on a Todd's Wiggle Minnow.

    After a few trips chasing White Bass, I went to some different water on a cloudy, drizzly day and found some huge bait balls. Big schools of 32-42 inch stripers had found the bait and it was hard to beat. I spent every off day for the next month or so on the lakes, chasing schools of big stripers and chucking the 11 weight. You guys might remember that I have a little Gheenoe, and I think I go faster while getting towed behind a big striper than I do while running the outboard wide open.


    Fishing for schooling fish is great, even for small fish. But when you've got nice sized stripers coming completely out of the water in a big blitz, with shad flying all over the place, it is really something special. These days were filled with a lot of waiting close to the bait and counting the sinking line down to fish deep. Fishing under or around the bait can and did yield fish, but really I just did it to pass the time until the school came up to the surface. Once they did, I made my way to where they were, made a cast, and was normally tight to a fish within a few strips.
    On sunny days, the best method was to find the bait, find the closest dropoff, and put in some time counting that line down. While I couldn't catch as many numbers when it was sunny, using that method is really good for sticking some bigger, nicer fish. These things are so strong and I easily saw my backing with most of them.

    And, for the big papa:

    This fish measured 41 inches and was super heavy. I don't carry a scale with me but he made me feel like a weakling.
    I've also had the chance to get back out to chase musky a couple times this fall with David Knapp, Pat Tully, and David Perry. We have had some great action (by musky standards) and have moved quite a few this fall. I feel pretty confident saying that we all have the bug pretty bad and I've been looking forward to getting back after these things after having a good winter chasing them last year.
    Last week, David Knapp and David Perry and I met up super early to float a very long section of river. Activity was slow before lunch, but we started moving a few fish once the afternoon rolled around. We had all traded rowing duties, and it was my turn to head up to the front of the boat. After 2 pretty decent follows and some good advice from David Perry, a fish appeared from nowhere and engulfed my articulated streamer. One good strip set and I came tight on a scary, toothy critter. This fish ran downstream a little ways, and then tail-walked like a tarpon. David P. stayed on the oars and grabbed a camera, and David K. grabbed the net and sealed the deal. These things are awesome.

    Thanks to David P. for the great photo. To me, the most enjoyable part of casting a fly to these things is the long periods of inactivity and anticipation, and then the excitement that comes along when a fish appears. Everyone in the boat can feel this anticipation all day, and when it finally happens, its great. It is also worth noting that weak knees and skipped heartbeats happen any time someone comes tight on a log or gets hung on the bottom!
    It has certainly been a fall to remember.
    Thanks for reading guys, hope everyone is enjoying this warm weather. I have a feeling it's not going to last all winter.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Louisville, TN
    Posts
    617

    Default

    Awesome fish and pics...... My boat is full of gas and batteries are charged......... And I heard from a little birdie where those esox will eat a fly close by........

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Kingston, TN
    Posts
    285

    Default

    Now those are some NICE fish!! Excellent work, my friend!
    Fly fishing - it's cheaper than a bass boat!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Knoxville, Tennessee
    Posts
    1,569

    Talking

    They look like all the fish I catch......well your first picture anyway

    And is that you or the Bass in the second picture smoking a "cigar"

    If it's the Bass you should name it BigSur

    Beautiful Pictures of some hogs
    Call me if you want to go fishing, boating, hiking, or if you want to buy a foamie
    www.foamiefriends.com

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Seymour, TN
    Posts
    1,484

    Default

    Great report! The Wiggle minnow is such a great fly . It is a staple in my fly boxes in white and firetiger.
    Have you all tried any of the 3 piece articulated wiggle minnows, that Scott Lewis makes, on those musky ?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Posts
    109

    Default

    Thanks guys!
    Gary, I haven't used the 3 piece articulated ones. I've fished with a 2 piece (not for musky), but I bet that 3 piece on a sinking line would move some fish. Kind of the same principle as a lot of hardbaits like a dead stick rogue or a big jointed rapala.
    I need to get my hands on one of them.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Seymour, TN
    Posts
    1,484

    Default

    It is probably just a 2 piece if you are only counting the foam sections. I believe Scott or Todd are making a 3 foam section one now. 2 articulations It is about 10-11" long.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Knoxville
    Posts
    189

    Default

    Dan, That is fantastic stuff. I recently bought an old center console to mess with warmwater fish. I've found the white bass and they are a hoot. I will pop by the shop some time to pick your brain about stripers.

    Dave

Similar Threads

  1. What about Fall.
    By Davem in forum Smoky Mountain Fishing
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 06-10-2015, 12:33 PM
  2. Clinch River Report: [June] Wrap-Up
    By MadisonBoats in forum Tennessee Trout Streams and Tailwaters
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 07-16-2012, 03:24 PM
  3. Wire weight wrap
    By Grannyknot in forum General Fly Tying
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 05-08-2010, 05:11 PM
  4. fall flies
    By fly fisherman DK in forum General Fly Tying
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 09-11-2008, 07:17 PM
  5. Fall fishing
    By FRW in forum Smoky Mountain Fishing
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 06-20-2006, 08:50 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •