Last February accounted for more 20” river smallmouth in my trip report log than any month so far this year. I expect December to beat it. The pattern that works for so many big river smallmouth? To tell you “suspending jerkbaits over ledge trenches” would only tell you about 30% of the story. The other 70% - the important part - is how long between jerks. To be honest, unless the water is fairly stained, the jerks are inconsequential.
We are starting to see much cooler water temperatures and increasingly less sunlight. However, Fall is a great time to fish and is one of the best times to catch BIG fish. As their metabolism slows, they often look for bigger baits as water temps Fall (they are math geniuses, calculating calories spent versus calories to be consumed). With that in mind, big fish can often be enticed to attack larger lures compared to the warmer summer months.
Fall colors peak along the Gulf Coast in October. The color red, that is. After enduring a long and muggy summer, the angler is rewarded with great opportunities to find redfish as fall sets in.
I’ve got a kayak and fishing gear. What else do I need to start kayak fishing?
It’s a question that gets batted around quite a bit, and everyone has an opinion. Here’s what I came up with after examining my gear and consulting a few expert kayak anglers (thanks, everyone), plus a few items that are certainly nice to have. This list is by no means exhaustive, so please add your suggestions in the comments.
Many kayak anglers head to the Gulf Coast through Alabama or Georgia, and never realize what a special fishery they are passing through. One of the greatest bass species that can tighten a line is only found in the Southeast. The shoal bass, called “shoalies” by those who love them, are beautiful brown bass that will leave an angler weak in the knees.
Most anglers grew up chasing some sort of panfish with a cane pole or rod and reel. Some of us still enjoy chasing a mess of them from time to time. Beautiful colors, fun to fight, and excellent table fare are just a few of the reasons not to neglect these fish.
Kayak anglers pursuing bass in the Southeast are liable to catch several different species depending on where they are fishing. In my area on the Chattahoochee River we have largemouth, shoal bass, and spotted bass. The spotted bass is a firecracker of a fish that strikes hard, jumps a lot, and is incredibly strong.
If you've been fishing from a kayak for any period of time, you're familiar with the "You're crazy!" refrain from the public at large when you explain how you spend every free moment on the water. Kayak fly anglers likewise often get this response from other yak fishers when we reveal the long rod as our primary gear of choice.