Monday, August 26, 2013

Susquehanna River on Sunday Morning with Dell Jackson (08/25/13)

Hello Folks,

A few weeks ago, I began fighting off a virus. Dell Jackson and I had been planned a local fishing trip prior to me getting this "Bug", our first fishing adventure for the Summer of 2013. But sadly, I had to cancel our Susquehanna River outing because I was feeling so nauseated and felt like crap when I awoke the morning of our planned trip. I doubted that I could make it through the entire day on the water.

Well, we made up for that lost trip yesterday when Dell and I met at my home at 6:30 a.m., loaded up his gear and tackle, and headed south to Lake Aldred, Susquehanna River. The air temperature was only 53 degrees. How can this be!?  We still have a full month of the "the dog days" of summer remaining. The current weather forecast was calling for a beautiful Sunday with less humidity and only partially cloudy skies.

We were greeted at the ramp by a dense morning fog. We were the only boat in the entire PPL Pequea Boat Launch area! Our fellow fair weather fishermen had not yet arrived at the river today. In fact, we did not see another boat with anglers until after 9:00 a.m., when the fog had lifted.

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As we neared the Safe Harbor Dam, the fog thinned near the structure which allowed us the opportunity to maneuver very close to the rocky ledges that seemed to be holding a good number of smaller bass. Both Dell and I picked up our topwater lures and began to toss them across those exposed shallow ledges. Dell was using Tiny Torpedoes and I was tossing my favorite souped-up Boogerman Buzzbait...

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Dell got the "Skunk Out of the Boat" rather early with this very nice smallmouth bass... "Great smile, Dell!"
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It was soon after that I caught a couple of smallmouth beauties...
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A few years ago, Dell and his son, JJ, took a fly-in trip to Canada to catch some "toothy critters". He asked me for my opinion regarding non-traditional lures that he may want to try on their trip. He mentioned that there was a a lot of grass on the lake they were heading to which often hinders them from using some of the more traditional muskie and pike lures.

I had seen a television program that showed anglers having great success using larger swimbaits in dense grassbeds. I suggested that he talk to SFT about their large swimbait selection. Dell traveled to the Susquehanna Fishing Tackle (SFT) and spoke with Mike Acord about fishing with swimbaits. Mike set Dell up with several styles and sizes. The style that Dell seems to like is Reaction Innovation Skinny Dippers  in the Bad Shad Green color.

He also had one along that reminds me of the "Sexy Shad" color.
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We caught a lot of smallmouth bass today under the circumstances, The Safe Harbor Dam was not generating any water and the lake just sat there like a large warming bathtub. The water temperature was 71.9 degrees on my Lowrance depth finder and we didn't see fish surfacing to chase bait fish, which is normally the activity we see in and behind the dam.

Many of the fish we caught were in the 12-14" range this morning with only a few passing into the 15' range. We also caught some that were below the 10" range... A good sign.
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Here are a couple more that Dad brought to hand. You can see that the fog had lifted just after 9:00 a.m. and we now had a high blue sky to contend with... No moving water and high blue skies creates a difficult situation for anglers. They need to promote alluring action in their own tackle for reaction strikes.

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Dell was quite satisfied with this chunky bass and one of the 15+" that we caught on Sunday.
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Dell landed "Mr. Whiskers"  on his swimbait after the Safe Harbor Dam began to move water and fill up the lake Aldred pool. He also hooked into a much bigger fish that we never had the opportunity to see before it broke his 8 lb. test line. That fish was so big that Dell couldn't even budge it off the bottom... However, it was moving, but wouldn't rise. I kept teasing him about the log he had just hooked into... LOL!

We were able to pick out two eagles flying over the river today. One flew out along the Conestoga River Channel as we were putting along in the morning fog. Later in the morning, a second one flew from the mid-river islands towards the newly constructed observation platform just above the Safe Harbor Dam and along the recently formed walk trail...
"Pictures -ManorTownship's new 5-25 mile Enola Low GradeTrail"

We were fishing just below the site where the older fellow is standing and overlooking the Susquehanna River. There were a lot of people taking advantage of this outstanding overlook view yesterday as we were fishing below them.... Cool Beans!

A big thanks to Dell for coming along and assisting me on a great Sunday morning fishing trip. Dell started school full-time this morning. I was able to provide him with outing day on the river for his last day of  summer vacation. He will now be fully refreshed and ready to meet the 130+ middle school students he will be teaching this 2013-2014 school year.

Throughout the day, I had to tease Dell by calling us "The Titanium Twins". This past year, Dell had his left hip replaced and this was our first trip together since that operation. If we ever enter a courthouse or travel by plane together, we will be sure to get searched head to toe!

This is the second week in the Summer of 2013 that I was able to egt out fishing twice in one week. I'm a bit sore  today, but I will survive. I will try to keep my inflammation down over the next two days as I prepare to have my Spinal Ablation performed on Wednesday. I saw a cold front will be approaching tomorrow ad arriving on Wednesday. That will put to test the ablation's success.

Take Care and be Safe!