I made lots of goals for myself this year. One of them was to do more freshwater fishing. Once I started striper fishing, that is all I did. All my time was spent driving the 1 to 1.5 hours to the surf, maintaining gear, making plugs and occasionally sleeping. My freshwater fishing slowly stopped.
First I just freshwater fished when I was a little bored throughout the year. Then I just sneaked into golf courses in the middle of the summer. Then I realized I hadn't done it in a few years. So this year I decided to make more of an effort. I like doing it. So I should actually go do it!
Plus I got a little envious. The crew I fish with, they are all very well rounded fisherman. They can catch fish pretty much anywhere they go using a variety of techniques. Me, I can catch striped bass. Oh and the occasional fluke and bluefish. I swing wildly at tog.
I also realized that I wasn't actively engaged in conversations. I was a listener when the topic drifted away from striped bass. I asked the occasional question, but once the topic turned to drop shots, Carolina rigs, chatter baits, all that was way over my head.
So this past Sunday, I went to a local lake for 45 minutes and attempted to find my roots. While I left the bobber at home, I did bring a few baits and fumbled around. I tried to work on my casting accuracy, correctly rigging plastic worms on a hook. Total LMB 101, remedial style.
There were a lot of lilly pads, and some open water between them. I started with the Choopy 3" Pike to see if there was a top water bite. I had one fish swing and miss. Then fumbled around Texas rigging a worm and then got my first fish. Next I tested out a little popper I am working on, and they didn't respond. I moved to another spot on the lake and picked up another small largemouth on a worm.
There were bullfrogs singing their tune, and I saw a frog jump in off a bank, so I put my 3" Pike on. I always thought they were really good frog imitations from my golf course days. I made a good cast right off the bank and did my best retrieve to imitate a frog. Three cranks to get it to dig, the let it float back to the top. Did that 3 times and fish on. A few more casts and couldn't find any more frog eaters in the lake. I put a worm on again and pitched into some pilings, and had a fish with some weight on it, but I had slack in the line and missed it. A few more casts after that, and I called it quits.
So while Bassmaster won't be calling me anytime soon to see if I want a spot on the tour, I knocked some rust off, caught a few fish and enjoyed myself. I have a freshwater trip planned in a couple of weeks, I might only get out fished 30-1.