Chasing fish and the primetime prespawn has been difficult at best this year for me. An early summer brought water temps up faster than normal leaving me scrambling to find water with active fish. Optimum success in prespawn requires good timing. Right place, right time can make all the difference in the world.
The water was clear and the morning weather left the surface smooth with high visibility. Quickly going into creature mode I start throwing the crawdad presentations with a senko rig as a backup plan. If I see fish shallow I can go to a lighter jig presentation on rod number three. With three rods and half the kitchen sink I work half the lake only to catch a few dinkers.
“What gives?” Questions and doubt start to creep into my chi. “They should be right here in front of me.”
Work the rest of the lake and change the creature presentation to a crankbait. I see one large fish but it tears off into the distance as soon as it hears the lure plop on the water’s surface ten yards away. A few more dinks come along on the senko setup as I round the corner to the last section of the lake.
Reaching the edge of the lake with the path leading back to the trailhead parking a passerby with son in tow asks me how the fishing action is for the day.
“Slightly worse than terrible.” I reply. “A few dinkers and I probably went through half the tackle box.” (which wasn’t really true but for me to have to change more than twice on a lake that I fish a lot is fairly rare).
The man offers his condolences and then pulls out his cell phone. He then proceeds to show me a picture of his son holding a 3lb smallmouth and then a few of him with one-hander shots of other fine bass specimens. At this point I am guessing he heard my teeth grinding in frustration and put the Iphone back in his pocket. We part ways and seconds later two anglers with gear in tow roll off one of the other lakes and our paths cross at the trail intersection.
“You get anything?” One of them asks.
“A few dinkers. You?”
“Nothing.” The man says shaking his head in lament. “But they were lighting it up yesterday. Huge smallies about every other cast. We can’t friggen buy a bite today.”
Sometimes that is how it goes with prespawn fishing, You either time things well or go home with only touching a few dink fish. Clearly one of those “Day late-dollar short” days. Dang nabbit!
My name is Matt and I’m a fishaholic.