My last two trips have been very tough due to cold temperatures and strong winds. These are conditions a lot of kayak fisherman try to avoid; I've been guilty of this myself. High winds definitely annoy me more than cold temperatures. Wind can really limit your presentations and make it next to impossible to keep boat position.
During one of my trips we had sustained winds of 10mph-15mph with gusts up to 39mph! This time of year dead sticking soft plastics can be very successful, but it was next to impossible to do this. We did manage a few fish on a Confidence Baits Bird. Our most successful presentation was a Lucky Craft Pointer 100 drifted over ledge rock. Also picked up a couple in a shore line eddy foam trail.A fish caught while fighting 39mph wind gusts!
This past Saturday Matt Gookin and I hit the river in hopes of catching some big cold water smallmouth. This time we were dealing with 10mph sustained winds with with gusts up to 20mph. Unfortunatley, it was a slow morning. I was able to pick up a couple on a tube rigged on a Draggin' Head Jig by slowly working it down a ledge at the top of a winter pool.
I fished area's similar to where I had success in the morning as well as shallow flats later in the afternoon. Still nothing. About and hour before it was time to get off the water I started focusing on the same pool where I picked up the two fish earlier. This time I was focusing on the tail end of the pool using a Pointer 100. I started off with 10 second pauses and worked my way back. I had just started pausing for about 15 seconds and WHAM!! FISH ON!! After a couple head shakes I got her in the net and quickly realized how big she was - 20.5" of pure smallie goodness!20.5" Smallmouth
Next time you are thinking about canceling your trip because of inclement weather; remember, fighting the elements can pay off! Just make sure you dress properly for the conditions. It goes without saying, but if you don't feel comfortable don't risk it.
Please practice CPR! See ya on the river!
About the Author: Aaron Dryden calls beautiful Virginia his home. He spends most of his free time chasing trophy smallmouth bass in rivers throughout Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania. When he is not on the river he has been known to chase largemouth bass in local reservoirs. Aaron also volunteers for the Central Virginia Chapter of Heroes on the Water. He has a passion for kayak fishing and enjoys sharing his experiences. If you ever run into him make sure you have plenty of time to talk! Aaron is a member of Confidence Baits Pro Staff, HOOK 1 Crew, and Columbia Pro Team.