spaghetti and seagulls
Summer and I went to Naci today. This marks the 3rd trip in a row for me out there. There was some question about the weather forecast. Accuweather was claiming a severe weather alert for wind and cold. Weather.com was saying hot and sunny. Rather humorous to compare them. I wore wool socks and it was hotter than heck all day and flat calm. Super high pressure condition, just bluebird and crappy all day.
So spaghetti and seagulls, here's how it works: Drive down the lake. Watch for seagulls picking shad on the surface. Stop the boat and trolling motor around until you see spaghetti on the screen. Drop a spoon down and start hooking up non-stop until they move.
We did mostly white bass today. If you saw a real thick pack of fish move through, you'd get a double on spotted bass. It happened 3 times. The thin lines are the whites. I'm guessing 20+ white bass in the 1 to 1.5lb range and 20+ spotted bass. Pretty much everything on jigging spoons anywhere from 20-70 feet of water. Mostly in 45.
Topwater sucked, reaction sucked, c-rigging sucked. Drop shot could get you a bite here or there. The most pathetic part was that I only landed two keeper spots today for a whopping total of 1lb 12oz. Either I have no clue what I am doing out there, or fishing is just that bad.
Also worth noting is that the morning bite was much better than the afternoon. We got on the water at 10am and caught most of our fish by 11:30am. When you were on them, you could drop anything shiny and metal and catch a fish.
We capped our epic day when I snagged an anchor rope in 40 feet and decided I didn't want to lose my spoon. 10 minutes later up came the anchor. Too bad you can't weigh anchors in in tournaments...
Transition time at Naci
I put in 11.5 hours Sunday at Nacimiento, practicing some more for the first WON team tourney of the year. Water temps ranged from 67 in the morning to 74 in places in the afternoon. Clarity ranged from 1.5 feet in the river section to 5 feet on the main body. Winds were light, conditions were bluebird - high pressure type stuff.
Went up to the river first thing. This took quite a while in my little boat. Started a couple hundred yards past the 5's and caught a few small drop shot fish. I didn't like the way the water looked so I started working my way back down the lake, hop-scotching all the way back to the ramp during the day.
Did about 30 fish on the day, with 6 keepers. Big fish a whopping 1lb 6oz. Best 5 went 5lbs 4oz. The biggest fish of the day came on inchi wacky on 4lb test. It had the head of a 3lber but the body was just wretched looking. I thought it was going to die from being lifted out of the water.
Things that worked were rattle traps, drop shot, grubs, spooks, tailspinners and spoons. Jigs didn't work very well, neither did spinnerbaits or c-rigs. Saw a few guys who were probably practicing for the Western Classic, but not much pressure out there.
Big excitement of the day came on the way back to the ramp when some seagulls started picking shad on top which resulted in a half dozen spotted bass and a half dozen white bass. White bass were pound and a halfers. The school fish would eat anything if could get around them. Too bad it only lasted for about 20 minutes.
I predict 16lbs for 2 days will win the Western Classic.
Tough Bite at Naci
Fished Naci 7/13 from 7:45am to 7pm. Fished most of the day with my new buddy Ryan from my MBA class. Real nice guy.
Water was supremely low. It's maybe 250 yards across the lake from the marina to the far side of the lake. You have to drive way down in to the pit to launch the boat. Temps 76 degrees. Clarity up to 5 feet in places, mostly 2-3 feet greenish brownish.
Ryan caught a keeper spot on his first cast on a wacky rig senko. That seemed like a good sign. I saw fish busting here and there in the morning. Things slowed quickly after the first 30 minutes.
So summarize the day:
We caught about 45 spotted bass and 1 hand sized white bass.
7 of those 45 fish were keepers
The best 5 weighed 4lbs 7oz on my scale (that is not a typo)
Spook bite was probably the best thing going. I caught a lot of fish on the spook in the afternoon. Shakey head and c-rig were easy bites around fish. I missed one spot on the spook that was probably 2lbs, then an 8 incher grabbed it on the next twitch. That was as close as I came to catching anything worth a darn.
Pretty much fishing at Naci is brutal right now. We ran the whole lake, I really tried for a 2lb+ fish, and it did not happen. I located 4 areas with good numbers of fish and really worked them over. I watched my meter closely and really hunted all day. We caught the fish on the meter - and they were all small.
I made some nice moves on top during the day too, laying super long casts on busting fish and catching them, pulling up on a single patch of nervous bait in the middle of the lake, firing, and catching a keeper spot on the spook in 70 feet of water. The bottom line is that Naci is just plain tough right now and I have no clue how to catch good fish there.
To put it in perspective, one of the spots I caught was over 15 inches long and weighed 1.00lbs.
Why am I there? - To see if I could get on anything for the WON team tourney in October. I may still fish it just for the challenge :) If someone gets more than 11lbs for 5 fish in that tournament, I will be stunned.