End of June Walleye

1 07 2012

I knew it was going to catch up to me sooner or later. Fishing had been going so well that eventually everything was going to blow up in my face. Well Friday night it did and carried over into Saturday morning.

I had promised to take out a club member Friday night to see if I could help get him pointed in the right direction for handlining. Steve had just started this method of fishing and he was having some success but was looking for a few pointers. He showed up at my house just in time to help me fix my garage door. The bracket holding the track up on the left side snapped and the whole door was listing to one side. We finally got it into place but it was only a temporary fix. That should have been a warning but as usual I ignored it. We made our way to the ramp, launched the boat and soon we were on our way to my starting point. I pointed the boat upstream, set it to its trolling speed and then the engine died. I got it started again but once I tried to increase the speed it stalled again. I repeated this process for a few more times but it kept stalling out. I checked to see if I was getting fuel and if the prop was fouled but everything was fine. I was really getting frustrated now because I promised to take Steve fishing and it wasn’t looking good. I finally got it going to and took off.  I decided to run the snot out of the engine for a while to see if it would clear out anything in the lines. After about 20 minutes I slowed down again and this time the engine was running fine. Go Figure.

We finally started fishing after an hour delay. It was slow at first but eventually we started to pick up a few fish. At one point I had a double on but it turned out to be a Sheepshead and a walleye. I had the walleye in my hand when Steve yelled out that he was hung up. Without even thinking I threw the walleye back and proceeded to help him get his line free. This isn’t the first time I have done something like this. A couple minutes later we were back to fishing and then I got hung up. I wasn’t so lucky, I lost 2 lures in the process. I replaced my leaders and was back at it about 5 minutes later. Shortly after that I got hung up and I lost my weight. I didn’t have a replacement shank so I had to improvise. While I was doing this Steve managed to land his first fish of the night on a #9 Vampire. We had 4 in the cooler when I was bringing in what I thought would be #5 for the night. Of course he came off right at the boat. That was the 3rd fish I had lost tonight. By now it was past 10:00 pm and I would normally head in around now. It was a beautiful night with hardly any floating weeds so we decided to stay out a little longer. I was hoping I could get Steve into a few more fish but fate stepped in and changed that. There was a boat anchored near shore and he was shining his spotlight at us. I figured he was just looking around for something but Steve said he could hear him yelling. Our lines we already in so we headed over to see what was up. Sure enough he couldn’t get his engine started and needed help. He threw me a rope and we towed him back to the ramp. On the way in I told Steve we were done for the night and he agreed. So after a late start, engine problems, 2 lost lures, a lost weight and broken shank, 3 lost fish and a tow in we ended up taking home 4. Could have been 5 but I had a brain cramp. I was hoping the good karma from helping out a fellow boater in need would carry over to the morning. No such luck.

The next morning I was taking Mike Barkley out. He doesn’t have a boat so the only way he is going fishing is if someone takes him along. Mike makes custom fishing rods so this handlining thing was kind of out of his comfort zone. I took him out a few years ago and there has been know stopping him since. This morning we awoke to cloudy skies and the possibility of rain. It did sprinkle a little but nothing much. After a whole month of high temps and almost no rain a little more would have been appreciated. At least it was cloudy, too bad it wouldn’t last. It didn’t take long and we had 1 walleye in the box. A few minutes later Mike had a fish on, unfortunately it was a Sheepshead. Around 7:30 am the wind shifted and started to pick up straight out of the south. It wasn’t long and we had whitecaps on the river. This surprised both of us but we were still getting the occasional fish so we stuck it out. By 8 we had 3 walleye and about a dozen Smallmouths that we released, a couple of them over 16 inches long. The wind had also started to die down and our cloud cover disappeared. My friend Jerry had called me and told me his neighbor had just pulled a quick limit in front of Humbug Marina. We pulled lines and made a mad dash downstream to try it out. After 2 passes and only 1 Sheepshead for our trouble we headed back to the stacks. We trolled around there for a little while longer but with the sun getting higher it wasn’t promising. While we were up there I got hung up once again and lost a whole rig. This was starting to get expensive. We tried for a little while longer but we weren’t getting anything so we packed it in.

So for the last week of June everything kind of fell apart. After two trips I lost four weights, 3 shanks, several leaders and about a dozen spoons. All of this for 7 walleye, 1 throwback, 3 lost at the boat, several Spotless Freshwater Redfish and a bunch of Smallmouth Bass. Quite a turnaround from the rest of the month.

Hope July starts off better than the way June ended.  The water is still stupid clear.  What I wouldn’t do for a good storm and some dirty water.

The only picture I took. I really need to have my guests bring a camera.



2 responses

8 07 2012

didn’t think vampire raps caught walleye.

8 07 2012

They don’t for me. That was probably the first walleye ever caught on a vampire in my boat.

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