Bass On the Fly: A Single Weapon of Mass Destruction
Bass on a fly always seems to be the most fun that I have fishing.
When they break the surface to grab your offering, there are those few milliseconds of shock and uncertainty mixed with pure adrenaline before you realize that the fight is on, and the fish is going to go berserk attempting to escape.
Last year, the best day or two I had included the best hour or two I had all year. They are presented as follows...
Early morning mist brings our bass quest into focus. Coffee in one hand, camera in the other...the water beckons, and we know....
Bass Lurking Nearby
...some sizable bass are nearby, preparing to feed at the slightest provocation.
Morning Envelops the Lake
Morning mist burns off, breakfast is over, and the final slurps of coffee are down the hatch. Time to gather...
A Single Weapon of Mass Destruction
...this fly, a Joe's Hopper, which caught every bass in this slideshow. I call it a single weapon of mass destruction because it has never, ever, let me down. Twitched slowly across the surface of the water, it presents a wondrous image of wounded terrestrial to the bass below, and they will attack anytime of day and far into the evening...
By mid-morning, a few bass have been caught and released. This photo is just a pose. The fish was caught using a 10ft. Tracker Jon boat and electric trolling motor. I glided parallel to the shoreline along weedbeds, and lily pads, along the effluvia of submerged fallen trees whose antler-like branches provided excellent cover. The silent motor and Tracker are a perfect combo to travel in ultra-stealth mode.
The Beat Goes On
By early afternoon, it starts to cloud over for a while, but I move in and among the rocks, where I caught this one. A slight chop on the surface means more floatant on the fly, which has to be changed frequently during the day because the bass tend to demolish them fairly quickly.
It Helps To Bring a Net
Sometimes I will go full "Rambo" and not bother to bring a net. But you lose some nice bass that way.
Later in the day, Mr. Turtle makes an appearance. Note the rocks and weeds closer to shore. Gliding in and around those rocks moving away from the shoreline at 90 degrees produced a few notable catches.
Mr. Bald Eagle Too
Meanwhile, Mr. Bald Eagle flies overhead, wondering why I am not throwing fish scalps onto the shoreline.
For a while in the late afternoon, I join someone in the big boat and we fish off a shoal farther down the lake.
Deep in the Evening
Best fight of the day was from this fish. I am again alone on the water, trying to a) hold the fish for this photo and b) hold the camera at the same time. You can see that I failed to do that, but my arm was stretched to the limit, and I wanted badly to ensure the fish lived to fight another day, as I wanted to ensure with all the fish. Nonetheless, I failed to get the entire fish in the picture, so if it's good photos you want, it always helps to have someone either take the picture or hold the fish, although, in some instances, you can use the self-timer.
Getting dark, but...
Not Done Yet
Finally, the day is over. The campfire and absolute tranquility of the lake washes over you, and it's relaxation time.
Still, already thinking about...
...the walleye just a few short miles away on a nearby lake.