Tuesday, May 18, 2010

The Drought Is Over! 05/17/10

Hello Folks,

Yes, the drought is over. I'm not talking about a rain drought. No sir! It's been raining here in Pennsylvania about 3-4 days per week for the last month. I'm talking about the fishing drought I've been in. I had not been on the water since May 7, 2010. In fact, it rain on us yesterday while we were on the water... LOL! That's a whole ten days of no fishing for me. I was definitely in one of those withdrawal stages, for sure!

My buddy, Dell, contacted me on Saturday, April 8, and wanted to go fishing. He recently had back surgery for three messed up vertebrae and needed some "therapeutic lotic water rehab". I had just the right answer... Fishing!

However, the rains started and we had to cancel our first scheduled trip. I didn't want a recovering back surgery patient on the water in that damp and dreary weather. I'm sure his back was hurting enough and he didn't need the poor weather and high winds to make it any worse.

So, we finally got together yesterday after my early morning chiropractor appointment. It was time to head north to the Susquehanna River. We took Dell's boat for it's maiden 2010 voyage. He bought a used 17' G3 a few years ago and I've helped him each year get his boat and motor up and running. Two seasons ago, he bought a used jet to replace the prop and we worked together to develop his skills as a jet boater. He's doing quite well and runs it often on the North Branch where he has a cabin along the river.

The boat and motor ran great yesterday. Dell had lakeside Marine place a new water separator in over the winter. We made sure that it was primed and ready to run. It worked fine and now Dell's motor is better protected from moisture damage.

We weren't going to stay too long because of Dell's circumstance. The clock was ticking because I was running a bit late from my morning appointment and the nasty weather was moving in on us from the southwest.

We made it to our first honey hole around 10:35 a.m. I jumped up front on the trolling motor and Dell was on the back deck. This is our normal mode of operation even on his boat. He likes to sit back and enjoy the ride as I control the boat from the front deck.

The water was dingy, but that didn't stop me from trying a Boogerman buzzbait over the grass bed. The water had risen from our recent rains and had just crested. Dell selected a small crayfish pattern crankbait and immediately hooked into this great looking 17.5" smallie:


As you can see, he was a happy camper with his first 2010 smallie.

Just prior to Dell's catch, Steveinpa had texted me and asked if we had caught anything. Of course, I had to text him back and let him know about Dell's success. :)

What a great start!

As the drizzle began, we continued to fish and that particular grass bed yielded 6 smallies to us. The other five came from tubes that were thrown tight to the grass line. That's right where they should have been with the water rising over the past few days.

We finally moved further north and hit a few more islands without a single tap. However, on our fourth island stop, we nailed five more bass with a few misses thrown in. This was the perfect way to end our "therapeutic lotic water rehab" session. By now, we had a pretty steady, but light, rain falling that required us to wear our rain suits.

The water had a brownish tinge to it on the east shoreline. The middle and west shoreline had better color and you could actually see the dirt separating from the clearer water. We had green pockets starting to show in what was once solid dingy water.

I didn't get a water temp since we were on Dell's boat. The air temp only held in the 50's and when the rain moved in around 1:30 p.m., there was a stiff wind developing from the southwest.

All in all, it was a pretty successful trip. (1) Dell's boat and motor ran great, (2) We caught fish, (3) Our backs held up, and (4) the major rain stayed away until our time to return to the ramp.

We had a productive 3 hour trip and it felt good to feed my addiction once again.

Take care and stay safe,