Saturday, March 28, 2009

Lake Rousseau Report 3/28

Wiinndy! With wind gusts up to 30mph fishing our North Tampa Bass Tournament was a little difficult today to say the least! Throw in a stump filled Lake Rousseau and it's a recipe for disaster!
My co-angler Greg and I battled the wind and stumps for a good part of the day but managed to put together a couple of decent 5-fish limits to finish 1st and 4th respectively and more importantly not go over board in the process! We ended are day out of the wind by fishing some docks in the canal by the Bass Avenue ramp with both of us filling out our limits there. The mix of wind and submerged timber lay downs everywhere was a challenge as at times we felt like we were in a bumper boat bouncing off stumps just trying not to fall in! Greg took advantage of the early morning bite before the wind kicked up and nailed 2 nice bass on a white spinnerbait with gold willow leaf blades and 2 more nice ones on rattle traps with one going 4.15 and winning big bass. I on the other hand had to scramble most of the day picking up a fish here and a fish there to piece together an 8lb limit. We both filled up our 5-fish limits hitting a row of 3 docks in a northside canal with junebug senkos/Bitters Slings. I was hoping the shad rap bite would be on as it was last time I was on Rousseau but it just wasn't there today so I did what I could catching one on a texas-rigged Culprit worm in x-mas, one on a shad rap, and 3 on junebug Bitters Slings under docks. Greg finished up with 11.11 lbs winning his first tournament of the year and probably putting him in 1st place in the AOY standings. Overall, we had 18 anglers catching 39 bass with 4 limits.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Lake Kissimmee Report 2/28

We held our North Tampa Bass February tournament at Lake Kissimmee out of Thomas Landing this past Saturday with several nice bass being caught but only a few 5-fish limits. After a rough start to my morning I was able to put together a small limit before screwing up at the weigh-in and only weighing in 4 fish!
I started off by going to what I thought was my "secret" spot on Kissimmee but in the darkness of the morning or maybe I just wasn't awake yet, I completely mis-calculated and found myself on Philadelphia Point. It looked great so I decided to start there. The bite was slow for me in the morning as tried topwater frogs, traps, worms, trick worms with no luck. The water temp was about 64 to start with the air temp around 60. As the sun came up and heated the water a bit the action started to pick up. I nailed a nice keeper of a small point of grass but half way to the boat he spit my culprit. That was the only bite I would get on a curly tail worm so I switched to a trick worm to see if they wanted something with a little less action. It took over a half hour but I finally got a bite on the trick worm and it was a nice one! After a couple leaps she looked to be about 3 pounds and a good start but as I got her to the side of the boat she got stuck in some Kissimmee grass and before I could get here free she freed herself of the grass and my hook! I was dissappointed to put it mildly but it gave me some confidense to start pounding the trick worm with reckless abandon! About 20 minutes later and around 10:00am, after three missed fish, I finally land a keeper! She would go almost 3 pounds and I can now get the missed fish out of my mind! I went on to pick up 2 more small keepers on Philladelphia Point before heading to the "spot". Somehow along the way I got side-tracked and decided to hit an area in the Tiger Cove area as it looked very bassy. I was only able to get a one short in about a half hour so I took off. I decided to skip my spot for now and head to some docks in the Kissimmee River/Camp Mack area. Water was very murky and I just wasn't feeling it so I decided to head out to the "spot" and see if I can't get two more keepers to round out my limit. When I arrived I had only about an hour 'till weigh-in so I went to work. It only took about 10 minutes to get my fourth fish of an outside weed edge on a junebug texas-rigged trick worm. With about 15 minutes left, I finally catch my fifth keeper on the same bait and I happily head back to the dock with a small but hard worked limit! This is where it gets heart-breaking (at least for me)! I am tournament director so in the midsts of trying to get set up and get my fish weighed, I missed one of my keepers getting stuck in my weigh-in bag! I just bought a new Gator Grip bag with a mesh insert and he got his gills stuck in in the mesh as I dumped the bag into the tub. I even unwittingly looked into the tub and said "4 fish, 4 alive"! Oh well, I guess I was just destined to not got my limit on this day! Overall I had 5lbs 11ozs officially with 1st place weighing in 10lbs 8 ozs, 2nd-10lbs 7ozs and 9.9, 8.0, and 7.0 respectively after that. Big bass was won by John McCallister with a 6 pound 11 ounce bucketmouth caught on a black with blue flake senko. Oh, and the fish stuck in my bag survived after patiently waiting for the weigh-in to end:)
Water temps: 64-70
Air temps: 58-85
Wind: Calm in the morning, 10-15mph in the afternoon

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Lake Kissimmee 2/26 Pre-fish

I pre-fished Thursday for our North Tampa Bass Club tournament on Saturday and the fishing was really tough as were the conditions. I launched from Thomas Landing on the west side of the lake at about 8:00am and it was immediatly apparent that wind was going to be an issue! It was blowing from the north east at about 10-15 mph with gusts to 20. I started on the west side of Lemon Point as I was looking for the Pig Trail but mis-calculated! It looked great anyway (what doesn't on Kissimmee?) so I put the trolling motor down and went to work. I tried flipping a few different plastics bit it was tough to get off any acurate casts as I was being muscled around by the breeze. I tried to anchor up and pitch to some pads but it just wasn't working and I was getting frustrated so I made a run to the south side of Lake Hatchinea to get out of the wind. It worked as I was able to flip and work a worm around in a couple feet of water with ease but the fish just didn't want to cooperate so after 20 minutes I bolted back down the Kissimmee River and decided stop in the Ox Bow where Camp Mack is located and flip some docks. After flipping some senkos around for a half an hour with still no bites I decided to run back out to Kissimmee and try and figure out my next move. I made the decision to head down Tiger Creek to Tiger Lake and see what was going on there. After the fun filled slalom that is Tiger Creek I arrived at Tiger Lake and immediately loved what I saw. Long docks everywhere with patches of grass in between. The water was cypress stained but clear enough to see the bottom in a three feet of water. I pulled out my junebug Bitters Slings and went to work. It didn't take long before I pulled a small 10 incher out from under a dock. I had missed him on the first throw but he came back for it on the next. Finally a fish at 1:00pm, now I can stop thinking about the skunk! I kept at it and pulled another small one out of grass patch 10 minutes later. I thought I was on to something and kept working the grass and docks all the way down the shoreline but those would be my only two fish of the day. If I was fishing a tournament, I would have gone back and worked the area where I found the two fish but I was prefishing so I needed to keep searching. At 4:00pm I decided to call it a day and hope for better conditions on Saturday for my tournament! At least I got some sun and didn't get skunked!

Thomas Landing
3952 Sam Keen Rd
Lake Wales, Fl 33898