Thursday, April 30, 2009

Pete @ GOMH

Today Pete woke me up around 6AM to go fishing. After a couple of cold fish sandwiches we were off to the GOMH. When we arrived it was overcast with a 10-15 MPH South Wind. My fishing pals Don Weinmeister and Lantern Man were already there, both fishing the SW side. A guy who I gave fish to yesterday was also fishing the SW side. We watched for a while as they caught a few small silver bullheads. We were not there long and Don decided to call it quits, he went home with at least 7 silver bullheads, I am not sure if he had a few oranges in the bucket. With Don's departure we headed down to the SW side and Pete met Lantern Man. LM rubbed Pete the wrong way. Pete also discovered that it was LM who was giving the guy who I met a couple of nights ago the hard time. LM was under the impression that "party fishing" was not allowed in Minnesota. We told him it was, but he refused to believe us. Anyway Pete started catching a few small silver bullheads and I caught my only fish of the day which was a jumpin bullhead. Eventually LM and the other guy left and the wind picked up. Pete thought we should try the North side of the bridge, so we picked up and moved. When we were moving Conservation Officer Kuske stopped by for his 2nd time of the day.

When we were fishing the NW side, Lantern Man came back and apologized to us about not listening when we were talking about "party fishing;" LM had flagged down Kuske and asked him about it. LM felt really bad that he had been so in the wrong with that guy and was hoping he would get a chance to apologize to him or if we saw the guy to let him know how bad he felt. While we were talking with LM the guy who was fishing the SE side and talking a lot with Pete yesterday showed up and started fishing the SE side. Pete and I gave the NE side a try with nothing. While Pete was still fishing the NE side I stood on the bridge and talked to the guy and John W. who were fishing the SE side. It was drizzling and I kept having to wipe my glasses because I was looking into the wind. Eventually Pete showed up and went down the SW side. I took refuge in the car.

It started to clear up but the wind stayed pretty strong. Pete caught a smallmouth bass, but he released it before I got a chance to see it. I wish I would have got a picture. The guy who talked a lot with Pete yesterday claimed that they catch smallies by his place on Sullivan. There is a very small population of smallies in Sullivan, I personally have never caught one.

I went back in the truck until GOM Willard showed up. Willard and Pete started giving one another a hard time and I got a good laugh. Willard was talking about how Pete can't get any women. I got the story on why Willard doesn't care for CO Kuske and I told Willard about "Ricky Bobby" from yesterday and he had the same guy do the same thing to him a few days earlier. Willard didn't stay long and I went back in the truck. At some point a guy who fished the SW side with us yesterday showed up. This guy and Pete started hammering the orange bullheads. The guy who Pete talked to yesterday kept waking me up to get 1 of Pete's beers in the cooler. The guy drank 4 of them.

I had a dream that I was at the GOMH fishing with Pete and an old guy wanted to measure the orange bullheads we were catching and I also dreamed I was hanging out in Pete's car instead of fishing.

Around 1PM Pete called it quits. He cleaned up the orange bullheads and single silver and we ate them as fish sandwiches for lunch.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Happy Birthday Pete!!!

This report covers fishing for the last 2 days. My fishing buddy Pete Kimmer is in the Minnesota National Guard and he asked us to watch his dog Sandie this past weekend for his drill at Fort Ripley. Pete has been staying at the house since Sunday. Last night we headed over to the Grumpy Old Man Hole around 5:30PM and discovered a pretty good crowd fishing at the bridge on the SW and SE side. GOM Lee Ander was there and he was fishing over the rail in the middle of the bridge and Lee Anders brother, GOM Lewis was there as well but as usual he wasn't fishing. Willard was intently fishing on the SE side and I didn't talk to him. There was room to fish on the SE side but we didn't see a whole lot going on and Pete wanted to see if Don Weinmeister wanted to possibly go out, so we went to Don's house. We talked with Don for awhile before he had to go to Bible study at 7PM and he let us use his dock for fishing.

It was a nice peaceful night to be out but we didn't have any luck on the dock, so around 8:30PM we headed for the GOMH. When we arrived there was only 1 truck remaining with a guy and his kid fishing on the SW side. Pete caught a little silver bullhead and I missed one and that was it. While we were there a guy showed up and said he and his wife smacked em good earlier in the day and he was down checking to see if a guy who was a jerk to him in the morning was back at night for a little "double dipping." The guys he was looking for weren't there.

Double dipping is when an angler catches their legal limit goes home and then comes back to catch another limit, which is illegal to do in Minnesota because you can by law only possess 1 legal limit of most fish in Minnesota.

After not being able to get to sleep for most of the night it was a little before 6AM this morning when Pete woke me up out of a crazy dream and tried to get me up to go see if we could get a morning bite. He said if we didn't get them we could always come right back and the logic of that thought seeped into my sleep deprived brain and I actually got up.

We were at the GOMH by 7AM and there were about 4 people on the SE side and 2 people on the SW side. We took the SW side. The people who had got there early said the bite had been pretty good but had slowed a bit. Pete landed a jumpin bullhead almost right away and the guys with us on the SW side were catching an occasional silver bullhead. After 1/2 and hour to 45 minutes the guys next to us ran out of minnows and 1 of the guys filled out his limit so they left which gave us command of the SW side and seemingly put us in better position to fish the area's that bullheads had been coming from.

(Pete on the SW side)

I don't remember who caught the first fish but I caught a couple of very nice silver bullheads and Pete caught a couple of orange bullheads which we kept. We were going through various degrees of overcast and I got a hot hand on the silvers for a while. They were taking minnows, alive or dead, on the orange Flu Flu. Eventually things cooled down for me and Pete got hot. There was a shuffling of the people fishing at the GOMH and I ended up giving away a couple of silver bullheads that were not up to my minimum keeper standards. I gave Pete a hard time about how big the fish had to be before I would clean them.

It must have been sometime after 10AM when I went up to the truck to relax. The fish were biting slow but steady when I went to the truck. While I was relaxing Conservation Officer Kuske stopped by. Apparently he had received reports that people were double dipping and he was looking for info, but I don't think I was of much help because I didn't have any clue who might have been dipping or not. Everyone we met that morning seemed to be on the level as far as I could tell. CO Kuske told me what he knew about the remaining changes the GOMH bridge will go under. He said he was quite disappointed that they did not dredge the channel like he thought he was going to get them to do.

CO Kuske also asked if I was "the guy with the website" and I told him I was, but I didn't ask him why he asked or if his interest was a good thing. I have a sneaking suspicion that an individual or two who holds a grudge against me has reported that the area CO should specifically be on the lookout for me and all that BS. If I wasn't so tired maybe I would have thought to enquire. Anyway, Kuske checked my license and off he went. I wish I would have also asked him about the lack of Walleye Stamp designation on my license.

Sometime before Kuske arrived a boat moved in on where Pete and a guy on the SE side were casting. Pete had a few words with the guy and eventually dubbed the boat driver "Ricky Bobby" as the boater made a few inexplicable moves in positioning and re-positioning the boat.

Any way as it turned out Pete started really whacking the fish. I did join him for a little while but tired of the challenging casting conditions fairly quickly. Some more people joined the Pete GOMH shore party and it started to sprinkle and then rain. Pete was catching fish like a mad man and was in a generous mood giving quite a few silvers away. We left around 2PM when it was really coming down at a pretty good clip. We passed GOM Willard on his way to the GOMH when we were on the way home.

All told we kept 16 silver bullheads and 2 orange bullheads

Pete estimated he caught over 60 bullheads and we both could have filled those final 4 slots from fish we released. I think the smallest fish was about 9.5" with pretty much all the rest being 10"-12".

We cleaned the fish and ate them up at a special birthday dinner for Pete who turned 40 yesterday. Jenny Olson came and had dinner with us as she loves her fish.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Still Not a Dud or Stud

Today the weather was a little nicer than expected with sun temps in the mid 50's and little wind. I headed over to Bear Trax to get minnows around 5PM. When I arrived at the GOMH there was a pretty big crowd on and off shore. I parked on the SE side and stood and observed for a good 15 minutes. I saw quite a few fish getting caught on shore and in the boats, it was mostly orange bullheads, but an occasional silver bullhead was getting caught too.

It was pretty close to quarter to 6PM when I made my way down on the SE side which already had 4 guys fishing it. One of those guys was Bucket Man sitting on his bucket closest guy to the channel. The guys next to me were getting a bunch of orange bullheads. One of these guys tied into a bigger fish that proceeded to snag him up on the bottom and he had to break his line.

I heard the familar voice of "Grumpy Old Man" Lee Ander over on the SW side. After about 20 minutes Lee Ander got picked up by a boat and a group left the SW side. Since I wasn't catching anything I seized the opportunity and moved to SW side on the rock bar that is closest to the channel. With the way Bucket Man was fishing I had a lot of water where I could cast the Storm Wildeye Swimbait baby bass. There was a guy and his son fishing over by the rushes on the SW side catching orange bullheads.

I started casting across the boat channel and was quickly rewarded with several small jumping bullheads. Eventually I did hook into a really nice silver bullhead. For the next 2 hours I proceeded to fan cast the Storm Wildeye catching numerous mostly small (8-12inch) jumpin bullheads, 1 toothy bullhead, and 1 more really nice silver bullhead. I had one swimbait tail get bit off, another one almost get bit off, and had one swimbait stolen by a toothy bullhead. During this time "Grumpy Old Man" Willard showed up and started fishing with me and "Grumpy Old Man" Lewis came by for the first time this year. I learned from Willard that the guy with the teenage kids who I have fished next to a couple of times this year is Lee Anders son-in-law.

Another quick story is that as I was bringing the toothy bullhead across the road to release on the North side of the GOMH, a car pulling a boat rolled down his window and asks me if I am the Basspastor. Apparently one of my blog readers who's name I forget was out on Platte/Sullivan checking out the lake and he stopped to let me know he enjoys the blog.

As the sun set the action slowed down on the 1/8oz swimbait but I noticed some boats and the guys on the SE side starting to catch some bullheads so I switched to the bobber set up with the orange Flu Flu. I caught 2 silvers that I kept, 3 that I gave to Willard and one mini bullhead. As it was getting dark Lantern Man showed up and started fishing the SE side which had been vacated of people. Willard went home with a nice bag of silvers and oranges. I doubled my normal quota and brought home 4 silver bullheads (picture).

Also of note I saw a boat catch a dogfish.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Not A Dud, Not A Stud

Tonight I didn't get out until 7PM and I hit up Rock but didn't get a thing. I arrived at the GOMH at around 7:45PM and parked on the SE side. I spent some time re-rigging the Cubby Rod; I put on an orange Flu Flu with a big head and little feathers. The family that fished by me last night were the only people fishing. The teenage boys were on SW side and the Dad and Mom were on the SE with me. They reported that they had caught some little crappies and that their kids were catching sunfish with an occasional crappie. They told me that Bucket Man and 2 other guys were fishing in the afternoon and they got their limits from the SE side. I was not surprised to hear this as a front moved through during the day and it was warmer earlier. The temp now was 43 degrees.

Anyway I am not dud and not a stud because I did manage to catch just about as many fish as this guy and his wife unlike last night when they schooled me but that isn't saying much. I started off with a orange bullhead (pumpkinseed), and then got the nice silver in the picture, and I caught a small silver. Meanwhile the guy and lady caught a jumpin bullhead, a dogfish, and a small bullhead. I missed a couple of hits too. I tried after dark for a while with the lighted bobber and missed one hit.

Oh I nearly forgot, the guy told me that Grumpy Old Man Lee Ander was there fishing this afternoon but I don't recall if he said Lee Ander caught anything or not.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Rock Dock In and Grumpy Old Man Sighting

Today I took a morning trip to the GOMH and all I could catch was several jumpin bullheads and a toothy bullhead.

I headed out a little before 5 tonight and hit Rock lake first. The "Rock Dock" was put in today but the SE wind was just to much and I didn't catch anything. I was at the GOMH by 5:30.

I started out using the 1/8 Storm Wildeye Swimbait in baby bass and that is what I caught all my fish on. I ended up with 10 mostly small jumpin bullheads and the two nice sized silver bullheads pictured. The action for everything seemed to be better on SE side and I was on the SW side, but I kind of stunk up the joint. A guy with his two teenage sons joined me on the SW side as it was getting dark and they started catching bullheads while I was not getting any bites from the exact same water. I tried down sizing the Custom Jigs Glow Demon, but that didn't help. It was getting quite dark and there was no point in my fishing and not catching so I left.

Today it was around 80 degrees and that brought the people out, including "Pallet Guy" and his son and nephew. John W. and his 2 girls. and most importantly the first Grumpy Old Man sighting of the season; Sure enough Willard showed up. There were at least 7 people fishing the South side of the GOMH when I left.

Also of interest, there was a mild isolated thunderstorm that popped up around 8PM. I think this storm actually morphed into a severe storm by the time it reached the North end of Mille Lacs lake.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Doing my worst for Earth Day

Today was Earth Day 2009 and I thought I wouldn't do my part but would instead try to deplete some of the silver bullhead reserves of Mother Earth. I went to Rock first and the Rock Dock was still not out and nothing was happening. I arrived at the GOMH around 7:30pm and there were guys fishing the SW and SE shore. Both of these guys are regulars at the GOMH but not considered Grumpy Old Men. The one guys name is Tim or Tom and he has been known here at the blog as the Foul Mouthed Dad; His son was not with him tonight. I'll call the guy who was on the SW side Bucket Man because he sits on a bucket.

Anyway Tim/Tom welcomed me and told me that he caught a huge bass on a beetle spin. He said he had caught a bunch of bass, 3 crappies, and a nice sunfish. I fished on the SE side with him and got into some jumpin bullheads right away on the pink Flu Flu and a minnow. Meanwhile Bucket Man landed a couple of nice silver bullheads. I think when he got to #3 he was now at his 10 silver bullhead limit and so I took over on the SW side right around 8PM. I struggled to get the silver bullhead to go, missing the first 3 bites that I got. GOMH regular Lantern Man showed up and started whacking little silver bullheads on the SE side, so I asked him what he was using and that prompted me to make a change to a Custom Jigs Glow Demon. I missed a couple more bites then landed the two decent silver bullheads that I did get (Picture). I got 1 more smaller silver that I through back before I had to put a light on my bobber. Tim/Tom caught a 3to4lb dogfish. After dark I would have stuff play with me but nothing would take the bobber down. They were getting an occasional fish on the SE side.

It's pretty weak that I only got 2 fish. LM caught a bunch of silvers but most of them were not keepers. I talked with LM for a while and then left.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

At the GOMH

I arrived at the GOMH around 7PM and the temp was 53 degrees and the wind was whipping just like last night out of the NW. I thought it was going to be a repeat of last nights cold. After about 15 minutes it started to rain and I went up to sit in the car. The rain stopped after about 10 minutes and the wind died way down. The sun came out, then it got overcast again and it sprinkled or rained a couple more times before dark but thankfully the winds never came back. After the first rain the water started getting sucked back into Platte big time. Usually water flowing into Platte this early in the year is a sign of doom. Amazingly enough I found a pod of jumpin bullheads in the current and caught 4 of them. I worked the SE side hard and the current died down quite a bit but still kept flowing into Platte. As it got dark I went over to the SW side and much to my surprise got a bite, but I missed it. I cast back and the bobber went down and I landed the 9.25" silver bullhead in the picture. I had to run back to the SE side of the bridge to get my backpack and minnows. I took the pic, released the fish, and got a minnow on the pink Flu Flu. Immediately my bobber went down but I missed it and that was it. I stayed for a while with the lighted bobber but I didn't even get a nibble. It was kind of a strange night at the GOMH.

Rock Bass Rock Pike

I arrived at Rock around 5:20pm and was dismayed to see that the dock was still not put in yet. Protected from the NW wind I decided to fish and almost immediately got this bass.
Pretty soon after the bass I had a tussle with this pike.

I had 2 more strikes but missed them both.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Bullhead Surprise

A nasty cold front came through while I was fishing this morning. The day was mostly cloudy with some sprinkles with winds out of the NW at 20-30mph and a high temp of 47 degrees. I got out a earlier than I should have at 4:30 and headed to Rock. I was unhappy to see that the Rock Dock was not put in yet. Usually they get that thing in immediately after ice out. The access is protected from the wind so I fished but didn't get any hits.

Next I headed to the GOMH and even though I was fishing on the South side of the road/hill, that wind was a chiller. I fished for about 1/2 an hour without any bites so I went to the car and waited about an hour and a 1/2 for the sun to get low on the horizon as I figured my only shot at fish was going to come at dusk. I fished for about 1/2 an hour and was about to pack it in when the bobber went down and I set the hook into a 13.5" jumpin bullhead. Encouraged I decided to stick it out a little longer and was rewarded with another bobber down and a long green toothy bullhead; I would say it was about 23 inches and it had something in it's belly.

Encouraged I fished until the bobber was getting hard to see, then I took a quick trip to the SW side to see if there were any fish in the area I caught them last night. It was getting quite dark and my bobber might have gone down but I'm not sure. I felt something but didn't set the hook and came back with no minnow, so I called it quits.

I really thought with the front that I wasn't going to catch anything. The weather is supposed to get much nicer by the end of the week so I wouldn't be shocked if there is a Grumpy Old Man sighting this week.

Morning Silver Bullheading

I woke up today about 7am, so I thought I would go out and see if those bullheads were still on the SE side of the GOMH like last night.

Air temp was in the low 40's with a pretty good breeze out of the North and occasional sprinkles. I got a 8" silver bullhead on my very first cast with the glow Cubby Mini-mite jig and a minnow. Unfortunately I didn't start popping fish left and right. After about 15 minutes I got another bite and landed a nice 10.5" silver bullhead. I went quite a while without any more hits so I decided to switch up to a pink Flu Flu and that got bit right away by a 9+" silver. I think I got another one on the next cast and then nothing.

I went over and gave the SW side a shot for a little while and didn't even have a hit. The wind came up quite a bit out of the NW. I tried the SE for probably another 45 minutes. The clouds started breaking up so I hoped maybe that would turn them on but I didn't get nothing. I was getting cold so I left around 10:30am.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

The GOMH tonight.

I arrived at the GOMH around 7:45pm and there was a car there. A guy and a lady were fishing on SE side away from the bridge. I took the SW side and when I got down to the water I asked them if they were catching anything and they answered yes. I asked if they were crappies and they answered yes. How about that silver bullheads over on the SE side well out of the current. I started fishing with a glow Cubby Mini-Mite with a minnow under a bobber. The guy and lady were bringing in and throwing back silvers on a regular basis, meanwhile I was putting my line all over the place looking to find where silver bullheads might sit with the new bridge. I noticed the guy and girl were not casting out that far and were fishing around old cattail growth, so I tried in close to the rocks by the cattails on my side. Sure enough the bobber went down and I missed something. I cast right back and about a minute later the bobber went down and I had my first silver bullhead of the season. It was a keeper a little over 9 inches and I took it's picture.

I got back to fishing and again tried various places that I think would hold fish, nothing while the guy and girl kept pounding fish. Once again I put my jig and minnow by the cattails and down the bobber went, but this time it was no silver. After a good fight I landed a 18.5" jumpin bullhead. I fished until well after dark and got two more silvers when I could still see my bobber and both fish were right in the general area of the 1st 2.

Rock On!!!

First Rock bass of the year. Got it on a white and red jig. The fish was 18.5". I didn't get to Rock until after 7PM and it bit around 7:30PM.

Hopefully the Rock dock will be out tomorrow.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Rock and GOMH

A little after 4pm I headed out to fish. The weather today was cloudy and in the mid 50's and I made the mistake of not bringing my Fisher of Men Club jacket. I made a quick stop at Bulldog and was unsurprised that I caught nothing.

Next I headed to the Rock public access where I was fortunately protected from the NE wind. The ice on Rock just went out last night or this morning and so it wasn't much of a surprise that the dock wasn't out yet. I fished for a couple of hours but Rock was dead, not a single sunny. A little after 6pm I headed over to Jenny's (Platte) but the wind was blowing in there so I headed for the GOMH.

Nobody was at the GOMH so I headed down to the SW side. There was more current than I have seen this Spring. I tried a Cubby Mini-mite with a minnow below a bobber for quite awhile without so much as a sniff. Eventually I decided to try an 1/8oz Storm WildEye Swim Shad in baby bass. I have been using a white one that kind of swims on it's side without any success. After quite a few casts I felt a thump and a battle was on. I saw a tail first and thought it was probably a toothy bullhead, but then I saw the tail again and it had some white so I knew I had me a golden bullhead. Here is the fish:

It was 24 or 25 inches long and 4 or 5 lbs. Before I caught the fish I had resigned myself to the fact that I was going to skunk today, so this was a pleasant surprise. I tried the Wildeye for a little while longer, then I switched back to the Cubby and Minnow. I started getting quite cold. At about 8pm I had a couple of nibbles but the bobber didn't go fully under. I decided I couldn't take the cold anymore and headed out early.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Rush Again and GOMH

The plan today was to meet Rednek from forums to try a little crappie fishing on Anne Lake in Kanabec County. While waiting at the ramp I got a call from Red letting me know that his water pump had just gone out when he was on his way and so he wasn't going to make it. Oh well, since I was half way there I decided to give West Rush another try.

I decided to start out on the East shore like yesterday and I was pleasantly surprised to find an open parking spot. The place I fished yesterday was covered up by people. I found a open spot about 50 yards North of where I was yesterday. This spot was not ideal for a long cast. I think I caught a couple of small sunnies and the guy just to the South of me was catching sunnies. The people to the North of me on the dock were catching sunnies. After about 45 minutes a group of people that were fishing North of the dock started packing up, so I moved over there. They only got sunfish. This spot was a lot better for casting and I had some room to move around. I started catching some sunnies but they were smaller than yesterday. One time my Rocket Bobber stood up and started going down and I set into a 8.5 inch Crappie. I gave it to the guy with his family fishing just to the North of me. I kept catching smaller sunnies and got one more 8 inch crappie. About 7pm was when the action was best last night and tonight it got slow, so I decided to make a move. I had not seen many crappies get caught, way fewer than yesterday. I went over to the West shore and quickly tried a couple of things there, but it was pretty obvious I wasn't gonna get into any crappies so I bugged out.

I made it to the GOMH about 25 minutes after sunset. Platte looked like it was ice free. A guy and his son were fishing the SW side and they said they got 3 sunfish (orange bullheads). It looked there had been a big spill of gas on the Platte side of the GOMH as there was a thick colorful film taking up a big area. I took the up the SE side and caught nothing. When the father and son left I tried the SW side until dark and got nothing. I checked the Platte public access and it was free and clear of ice, so I called Platte Lake ice off today.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Knife and West Rush

Today at about 2:30PM I headed out on a road trip. First stop was Reeds Sporting Goods to pick up a CRCX610MH, which is a Shimano Crucial 6'10" Medium Heavy X fast casting rod. I got one last year and liked it so much I decided to get one this year too. The rod is versatile and can fish jignpig, swim jigs, chatterjigs, Texas rigs, Super Flukes, Senko's, spinnerbaits, and buzzbaits.

From Reeds I headed off to the South end of Knife Lake to see what was up there. There were quite a few people fishing on the pier, a few on shore, and a few boats. I saw quite a few crappies being caught buy most of them appeared to be on the small side and were getting tossed back. I fished for a little bit, but with the wind in my face couldn't get my bobber out to where the fish were which was out towards the end of the pier. Around 3:30pm I hit the road for Rush.

Since the wind at Knife seemed to be out of the SE I decided to hit the Eastern shore of Fransen Park on the North End of West Rush Lake. I was pleased to be able to get a parking spot in the small parking lot and off I went. My first spot was not ideal with a tree branch hindering my back cast and a line of catails between me and the water. I managed to get a couple of 6 inch sunfish on a glow Cubby Mini-Mite. After about 1/2 an hour the guys just to the South of me started packing up. I had watched them bring in a couple of crappies. Naturally I moved into their spot which had a free backcast and no cattails. They said the crappies were biting as far out as they could cast. Even though I had an 8 foot rod, the Wing It Bobber is not a distance caster especially because the wind was inexplicably coming out of the South Southwest. One of the guys offered to sell me a Rocket Bobber for $3. He bought the bobber for $3 off a guy who was fishing there wacking the crappies while he was getting nothing. I didn't have any money so I declined the deal. It turns out I had that exact same bobber with me, though I didn't know it at the time.

I think I may have picked up a sunfish and missed a few bites but it was pretty slow for quite a while. The people to the South of me were casting out quite a bit farther than me and were getting an occasional fish. And old couple from Lakeville moved in just North of me. I was shocked they would come that far to fish, but it turns out they had been at the Hinckley Casino and had decided to try a little fishing on their way back. Around the time they came I reached in my bag to look at my bobbers and I saw the Rocket Bobber so I put it on.

Unfortunately I didn't know what I was doing with the bobber at first. The bobber lays flat on the water and when a fish takes it the bobber stands up. I watched the bobber stand up quite a few times expecting a fish to take the bobber down but that wasn't happening. Eventually I figured out that if you set the hook when the bobber stands up you might actually catch a fish. I missed a good crappie and then the old lady caught a nice crappie and the old guy caught a sunfish; That was all they caught. I had been tipping the glow Cubby with a minnow but that wasn't working so great so I just went to the plain Cubby and started getting bit. I caught a nice 8.5" Sunny then a 10" Crappie (picture at top of post) and I began to think that I might start to hammer them. The bite seemed to go in spurts and all I could catch were mostly Ok sized sunfish. I probably caught a dozen keeper sized sunnies, but I don't like to clean sunfish and so I threw them all back. As it got toward dusk the wind quit and so did the bite. When I left I went over to the West shore and talked to a couple of guys that had been fishing in the cut with the pier at it's mouth. They caught lots of sunnies and no crappies. They said pretty much nobody was fishing the cut that comes in from the NW bay.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Yesterday and Today

Yesterday I got a 15" or so jumpin bullhead and today I got a skunk.

The weather might have been over 60 degrees today. There was starting to be a pretty good sized pocket of open water on bulldog. Rock ice is pulled away from the shore at the access about 10 feet. On the North end of Platte ice is pulled 15-20' from the shore with open pockets at the Platte River Inlet and off the end of N. Platte Lake Road peninsula. It looked like the Sullivan PRO is totally wide open and the Platte side is open maybe 1/3 the way to the small island, but the ice is looking very dark. We need a SW wind.

Monday, April 13, 2009

GOMH Rescue Mission

Yesterday I performed a little lure rescue mission at the GOMH that required me to use waders. Apparently they put down a blanket of some fairly thick felt like material before they put the rip rap in. A good chunk of this stuff was not covered up by rock and I had a lure get caught in it. I am not sure but I think the stuff semi floats if it can. My lure was stuck off bottom about 3 feet into the water. I got the lure stuck yesterday. I broke my line and tied it off to the bridge so I could come back and get at it. In my waders and armed with a knife I got after it and it was a little trickier operation than I expected thanks to the thickness of the material. Eventually I was able to cut out a chunk of material that surrounded the lure. I had to cut the lure out with a scissors. The scissors actually cut the material much easier than the knife.

After the mission was accomplished I took the waders off and went fishing. I got a jumpin bullhead that was just short of 18 inches and that was it. I was a really nice night to be out, little wind, lots of birds including loons swimming around and plenty of muskrats swimming in the area as well.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Jumpin Bullheads

Tonight I got 2 more jumpin bullheads. I think at least 1 of them was a fish I also got last night. I believe both came from just outside of the current flow.

I took at better look at how the GOMH will fish this Spring and they got the NE shore done well, very fishable with a much bigger area than was previously available. The NE is the Platte side and most of the water is away from the current at the bridge and on a shallow weed flat that is a wild rice field once the weeds come up. Generally this area doesn't hold fish until the water warms up significantly and it doesn't seem to hold silver bullheads; you get jumpers, toothers, oranges, and if your lucky a dogfish.

The SE side is close to being a disaster. While there is plenty of good riprap on NE side where it isn't much needed, there is not enough riprap on the SE side where it would be of real use. The SE side is steep and made up of loose dirt that will be unfishable when it is raining. It will be difficult on that side due to the lack of level ground.

The SW side is quite fishable right now provided that there is no more than 2 or 3 fisherpeople trying to fish it. I do worry my good level ground may get wiped away with a good rain storm. I think the loose dirt is going to be a real problem.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Fish ON!

I headed to the GOMH tonight just before sunset. I was greeted by loons calling as I got out of the car. I'd say there are 3-4 acres of open water on the Platte side and the Sullivan side has a lot of open water but the PRO is not all ice free, maybe 70-80%. I wanted to test out some of my new equipment tonight, I didn't really think I would catch anything. I set up on the SW side and found this spot at the end of the bridge concrete to be quite fishable. On my very first cast I had something swirl on lure I was throwing to test out. A couple of casts later and I had my first jumpin bullhead of the season. It was about 13.5 inches and bit in fairly shallow water away from current and around weeds. I made a few more casts with that lure and then started switching baits pretty frequently because it was going to be getting dark pretty quick. As I was casting one of the trial lures over deeper water in the current I got another hit. I pulled in a 14.5-15 inch jumpin bullhead. I was very quickly of the opinion that I might catch more fish, but that was it. By the time I got to the Cubby rod it was almost to dark to gauge the bobber. At this point it is a huge crap shoot on figuring out where a few silver bullheads might set up. With the old bridge there was the "bullhead sweet spot" which was such a high percentage spot if any silver bullheads moved in towards dark, without that kind of knowledge pinpointing them could prove difficult until a new sweet spot is found. There is no guarentee there will be a new "bullhead sweet spot."