Started out my day by sleeping in by almost an hour so I didn't get off to the best start, and I didn't get nearly as prepared as I'd hoped the previous night.
I pulled in at the launch just after 6AM, it was a bit cool, windy and the sky didn't look good at all. As soon as I hit the water it started to rain, however I was fairly well prepared, had the waders on and got to give my new paddle top a go ...although I couldn't find my bad weather hat anywhere!
I had a long paddle into the wind to get to my favorite fishin' grounds, I don't mind tho, cause it usually means it will be an easy paddle/sail back when I'm done.
There are a few really fishy looking spots on the way, and every time I can't help but throw a few casts and they hardly ever produce squat, when will I learn to stop wasting my time?
So I make a b-line for the first of a few spots I want to try the big popper. It was different than I expected tho, the water was high and the weeds still hadn't come in (also dozens of trees blown down after the storm, lot's of new structure
). I fished a little inlet that has produced some good fish in the past. I'm pleased to see on my second cast that the fish are showing interest in my big salt water popper. A few casts later and the popper disappears with a splash and I land a very fiesty 15" LMB.
I then move over the acreage of submerged weeds that I love chucking a popper over. I drift this large area in sections. I'm getting all sorts of boils and even see a small muskie take two swipes at the popper without a hookup, both times getting airborne. I keep chucking the popper (so much fun
) and eventually land another bass, a little smaller than the first.
I'm about 90% done covering off the main large area that I was targetting with a half dozen drifts and I see something really big explode out of the water with my popper in it's its mouth. From the initial angle and dark shape I at first thought it was a huge LMB, it even continued to fight like a largie but as I got it closer to the yak, it did a run and a jump and it was a small but decent muskie, with some awesome dark turquoise colourations. The fish put up a great scrap and measured in at 32". This is my biggest in the yak (not counting an out of season I caught on a 1" minnow while targetting panfish).
After a few more drifts and one more smaller LMB I switched to a small texas setup and found the little fishies overwhelming, plus it was too light for the lowest drift speed I could maintain. After one perch and having to constantly tend to my bait for 15 minutes I switched to something beefier. I landed 3 or 4 more LMBs with this setup, nothing over 14" tho.
With the deeper water I decided to extend my usual fishing area thinking that it had actually grown. The fish seemed to be liking the 8' plus waters, and their was some fringe I hadn't tried in a long time. I setup for a drift and at the last second I decide to switch back to the popper, well two tugs in to my first cast and something quietly skims by popper off the surface, quick and clean ...and it's a nice fish, a big smallie, just love how stealthily they can take a top water bait. The fight rivaled that of the musky and the hook had almost ripped out of his mouth when I finally landed him. At first he appeared to have the trebles in his bottom lip so I went for the boga, then I realized he was barely hooked so dropped the boga and just grabbed him. He measured up at just over 19" and was nice and thick.
After that I think I got a couple more LMBs on the texas rig and then called it a day.
I headed in and ran into an old acquaintance at the launch, chatted for a bit while I packed, and finished packing just as the boomers started happening.
What a great opener
my first crack at youtube -> http://youtu.be/zrKazCXfJHg