Monday, February 27, 2017

Mid-Winter Outing on Mullica River by,Steve

       We have almost got at least one post up, per month, each winter stretch since the inception of this blog, though it isn't always a recap from a recent trip. February is the shortest month, and short on opportunities for fishing our usual spots. Conditions to take a kayak out on a warm, sunny day, and catch fish shallow, on lures, are usually unlikely in February, but not impossible. This past friday prime conditions lined up for a mid-winter trip, and doubled as a good opportunity for me to check that my tack is in good shape for our upcoming trip to Florida..
      I launched early afternoon on the Mullica River, the sun had been steadily warming the shallows since morning, I saw small schools of bait. There was a slight and intermittent breeze but I wouldn't say it was too much of a hindrance, especially once I got up into more protected water. I fished through the ebb tide and there was little water to fish.
      I'd never fished for Pickerel before so that was the main object of the trip, and was satisfied early, once I found some submerged timber. I used only a small rapala "x rap" jerk bait, most hits came on the stop of a varied twitch-stop retrieve. I caught both Largemouth Bass, and Pickerel. The fish seemed to be hanging around manmade structure, docks, and break walls, as well as around stumps, dead wood, and debris. 
      I had about as many hits that didn't hook-up as caught fish, action was evenly spread out over the course of the trip. There was a little surface activity around sunset but not enough to inspire me to switch to topwater. Nothing of any size was caught, but any fish this time of year I consider bonus.
      Lessons learned: Always take advantage of good conditions when they line up, especially times of year when they tend to be the exception. Always bring a towel.