There's One

"Most of the world is covered by water. A fishermans's job is simple: Pick out the best parts." Charles Waterman

"One thing becomes clearer as one gets older and one's fishing experience increases, and that is the paramount importance of one's fishing companions." John Ashley-Cooper

"There will be days when the fishing is better than one's most optimistic forecast, others when it is far worse. Either is a gain over just staying home." Roderick Haig-Brown

Thursday, January 3, 2013

2012 LCI Father's Day Derby....One to Remember

I've been gone from this blog for far too long.  I want to apologize to my followers for the lack of substance that I have posted over the past year.  Once again my brother and I set out on fathers day weekend 2012 to participate in the LCI fathers day fishing derby. 

We always have a great time and It's nice to just spend some quality time with my brother, even if we don't do as well as we would like (which has been the case the last couple years).  I have to tell you all that my brother and I are both extremely competitive and consider ourselves "knowledgeable" bass fisherman.  So, we look forward all year with anticipation to this wonderful weekend of nothing but fishin.  2012 was not the best year weather-wise for being on the lake fishing.  The only good part day was the first morning when it was calm.  The remaining two days were very windy and made fishing very hard to almost impossible, especially if you were on broad lake and not refuged in a sheltered bay or river.

We launched the first morning while it was still dark and headed toward our "special" spot that we have always had great success at.  It was calm so we both decided to throw topwater baits just as it started to get light.  We were both throwing Rebel Pop'Rs in about 6-8 feet of water just above the submerged vegetation that this spot supports.  I had a small strike which did not hook up on my first cast.  My brother Devin had his Pop'R in the water also when suddenly he got a huge strike at the surface and yelled "fish on!" 

2012 LCI Fathers Day Fishing Derby Largemouth Category Winner- 6.02 lbs.

Looking back now, this fish did not fish nearly as hard as one would think.  He didn't even break the surface of the water to try to throw the hook.  What's even funnier is that my brother and I did not realize how much it weighed because my digital scale was not working correctly the first time we weighed it.  This fish was probably one of the first fish weighed in for the entire tournament as we were waiting at the weigh station the first morning when it opened.  We also weighed in a 10.17 lb bowfin which I caught about an hour after my brother caught this largemouth.  This combo has us in the lead for the warmwater division for the first day and a half.

10.17 lb bowfin

2012 was a year to remember and I am glad that I got to experience this with my brother.  It is always a blast fishing with him and I tip my hat to him for beating out 5,500+ anglers to win first place.  I can only hope that 2013 brings more excitement and big fish, but if not I won't be disappointed.  I'll be on the lake with my fishing buddy.  That's all that matters.  Tight lines.  Time to get my ice fishing equipment together.  It's 0 degrees out as I'm writing this.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Crawing for Smallmouth

This was the first time my father-in-law has gone out this year, and it turned out to be a pretty good day.  My brother came down from the NEK to join us and we headed up to the islands to one of our familiar haunts.  The forecast called for rain, but when we got there, it was surprisingly calm.  I haven't been fishing much lately as the boats been in for repairs, so I wasn't exactly sure how the smallmouth were behaving or in what depth they were in.  After a half hour and some moving, my brother boated the first fish of the day.

Shortly after, my father-in-law,Craig, caught two off a deep diving rebel crawfish.  The second one gave him quite a fight.  Tighten the drag! Tighten the drag!

We picked up a few more, and finally figured out a pattern.  We used gary yamamoto hula grubs on jig heads and either dragged or hopped them on the bottom in 12-15 feet of water.  This worked well for us as the waves had picked up considerably and fishing with senkos became out of the question.

This little guy was the ticket.

I managed to net my biggest smallmouth of the year at 3lbs. 12oz. off the hula grub.  He put on quite a show and I'm glad to have caught and released him safely.   I am also using 8lb. monofilament cajun line, and I must say that for the price of this stuff and the quality I see in it, I think I am hooked.

Smallmouth are becoming my bass of choice.  Less Northerns around compared to Largemouth habitat.  Find rocks and find smallmouth.  Tight lines.

Saturday, July 16, 2011


I took my good friend Ryan out Thursday to Mallets Bay to see if we couldn't get him his first Lake Champlain Smallmouth.  He was up from Texas for two weeks and doesn't get to do much fishing down there.  We started the morning with boat trouble, as it seems my charging system is not recharging my starting battery.  So I had to charge it off my truck and away we went.  We started out by Mallets Creek using poppers in the early morning calm, and Ryan started the day with his first Champlain smallmouth.

We caught a few more, and I missed a giant largemouth that came crashing to the surface and completely missed my popper.  I have been trying out the new Strike King Shim-E-Stik, which is much like a Senko.  I have had pretty good success with this bait, and it only costs just under $3.00 for a pack of 10.  About an hour after we began, I picked up this nice 3lb. 7oz. Smallmouth off the Shim-E-Stik in Baby Bass color.

The rest of the day was great.  We caught some more smaller bass, the weather was outstanding, and the conversation was great.  It's always better to fish with a friend.  Thanks Ryan for the fantastic time, and I'm glad that I was able to help you catch your very first Champlain Smallmouth. 

Tight Lines!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

LCI Derby

Before we start, I just want to let you know that the date on the pictures is wrong, the camera's date was not set.  As you can see it's like three years off.

Once again, my brother and I teamed up for the LCI Father's Day Derby.  Our target was Smallmouth Bass and the Champlain Islands were where we focused our attention.  Saturday morning a storm front came through and poured rain on my Escape and the boat.  Fortunately we had not launched already as some poor chaps had.  They must have been soaked.  For over an hour we waited out the storm until it finally broke around 5 a.m.  Boat in the water, let the fun begin.

About two hours in, my brother boated this very nice Smallie.

4.10 pound Smallmouth
  A great start to the derby.  A four pounder in the livewell before the weigh stations even opened.  So we weigh in the fish and go to head back out when my motor will not start.  DEAD STARTING BATTERY!  Well, to say that I was in a panic would be an understatement.  So I switched the leads over to my deep cycle to get the motor started, and headed back to the launch.  Two hours later, and after a trip to a local boat mechanic, it turns out that my starting battery is not taking a charge anymore, and it is not the voltage regulator or rectifier in the motor.  Crisis averted, and $90 later we're back on the water with a new starting battery.  Unfortunately, we couldn't stay where we wanted because of very high waves, so we were forced to move.  We caught many other smaller fish, but nothing worthy of weighing in.  End of Day 1.

Day 2 began with a check of the area we wanted to fish, but the waves were still too violent in that location, so we had to go to plan B.  We caught many smaller fish throughout the day until I finally got ahold of a good sized Smallmouth on a Senko.  The fish weighed in at 3.49 pounds, but unfortunately we overlooked taking a picture of it, so you'll have to take my word on that one.  Back out on the water and as it started getting later in the evening, the wind died down and we decided to go back to our favorite fishing spot.  This was a good decision as we bagged another three Smallmouth that weighed 3.0, 3.2, and 3.3 pounds.  Weigh stations were closed for the night, so we decided to keep the largest two to weigh in on Monday.  End of Day 2.

Devin with his 3.0 and 3.2 pound Smallies

My 3.3 pound Smallie
Day 3 saw us fishing a completely different area in the central part of the lake, and this was a bad move.  We didn't get a bite all day.  We were planning on weighing in our 3.2 and 3.3 pound fish, but for some reason we didn't and it was a bad decision. My brother would have been in second place in the coolwater angler of the year if we had weighed in our fish on the last day.  Wouldn't have won anything, but it would have been nice to get the recognition.  Oh well, we know what we did that weekend and that's enough for me.  Well get em again  next year.  It was a fun weekend brother, and I look forward to fishing it again with you next year.    Check out these beautiful fish.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Scouting for LCI

My Brother came down for a scouting trip of a few spots before we fish the LCI Father's Day Derby next weekend.  Glad we did because the fish were few and far between.  But, that's why we scout an area.  Anyways, water is still high, debris is everywhere, and water is cold. 
Devin with an odd colored smallie
I fear for many boaters who are going to partake in the LCI who are not familier with Lake Champlain.  The lake is dangerous right now with breakwaters underwater and logs adrift everywhere.  I'll be fishing the tournament, but I'll be especially cautious this year.  Good luck to everyone that's fishing it.  Let's hope for good weather.

Smallies love crawfish!

 Tight lines.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Enough already!

Well, it has been a looooong time since I posted, but that is because I have been on standby due mostly to the swelling waterways and lake champlain.  Last week I went down to mallets bay to launch, only to find that the water was lapping into the parking lot.  So, my boat waits in anticipation, but luckily I was able to fish a puddle in the Northeast Kingdom this weekend with my mentor.  The Smallmouth were certainly getting ready to spawn as they were moving up onto the large shallow flat from deeper water.  There were four of us in the small pontoon boat and we managed to put over 30 smallmouth in the boat in about three hours.  Most were hovering just below three pounds with a few small ones here and there and a 3lb. 4oz. being the largest.  It was the first time this year I have had my rod bend and reel scream under the pressure of a fighting fish.  I want to thank Mark, my mentor, for taking me out and knowing exactly what the bass were doing on this particular puddle.  I am now determined to get my boat in Champlain and check my smallmouth spots for some serious action.  Oh, and 5 inch senkos were the ticket all day long.  Devin, wish you could have been there.  You and I soon, Champlain, mark it on the calendar.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Opening Day

It's almost here.  Only a day and a half left until many anglers around the state cast a line into local rivers and streams.  Usually this would mean lakes also, but with ice still on many lakes around the state, I imagine lake fishing will be held up for a couple more weeks, at least in most places.  This time of year brings excitement, but I can't help but be a little worried as it has snowed here the past two days, rained hard one day, and barely broke above 40 degrees.  The rivers will be high, muddy, fast flowing, and difficult to fish.  Sounds like a challenge and I'll take it just at that.  Get ready for the fun to begin.  Good luck!

Lake Willoughby, Westmore,VT

Lake Willoughby, Westmore,VT
Huge Lake Trout Here

Lake Seymour, Morgan,VT

Lake Seymour, Morgan,VT
Unbelievable Fishery