Here were the conditions (hat tip to iWeather). Not as nice as the 25th, but still not too bad for a winter day:
I wanted to try out the Arkie “Salty Crawlin' Grub”. I'm hoping to fish it in many of the same situations I'd fish a jig, but this will be totally weedless.
I rigged it on a Tommy Biffle “HardHead” with a 3/16 oz. head and a 4/0 hook. The hook is loosely connected to the head, so it lets the bait float up just a little.
The skirt folds back over the bait when retrieved or when it falls. This thing falls INCREDIBLY slowly for this type bait. I really like it!
I got a TON of hits on this thing - some of them really hard - but nothing I could get hooked up on. They were all really non-committal hits. I think they were short-striking it. I still like the bait, and plan to use it again. It just wasn't right today, for some reason.
I finally broke out the bait I've relied on lately - the Zoom “Magnum Trick Worm” in green pumpkin, rigged on a 1/8 oz. “Shaky Head” from Owner. Second cast after changing over to the Trick Worm, I hooked up solidly on this nice little 15” fish.
He turned out to be the biggest of the day. I caught more that were just a tad smaller, but I seem to have been stuck in the 15” range for my last couple of trips. Oh, well - it's better than a skunking! I'll take a half a dozen or so bass on a winter day, no matter their size.
I found it odd that the fish seemed to short-strike the smaller bait. The Trick Worm produced far fewer strikes, but they took all of it and ran, making it easy to hook up. The Salty Crawlin' Grub, however, seemed to annoy them to the point they hit it, but didn't bite it. They wanted to EAT the Trick Worm.
That was my only trip this weekend. I'll be unable to fish Saturday because I have to catch up and pay for not hauling anything Monday. Those pesky customers! Weather permitting; however, I'll be slinging more stuff Sunday. I may try to get off the river and hit a local “no motor” lake that's 200 feet deep in the middle. I may try that Shaky Head really deep and see what happens!
About the Author: When not on the road driving his semi or taking care of his small ranch in Northeast Oklahoma; Nate Free is on his kayak fishing. Nate grew up paddling canoes and fishing for Catfish and Crappie. In 2006 feeling burned out with the ranch life and horses Nate turned to fishing.
Originally looking for a small solo canoe, Nate discovered sit on top kayaks and hasn’t looked back. Since 2006 Nate doesn’t go kayaking unless he fishes and never fishes without his kayak.