The bass are back

August 13, 2009

Faith Outdoors

For weeks, I’ve been waiting for bass in the lakes I fish to move into their summer patterns, in which they head out to the deep weedlines and feed heavily for the rest of the summer.

Finally, at long last, it appears to be happening. Yesterday, I went to Lake Calhoun in the hopes of connecting with some nice bass. It only took a couple of casts to tie into a big fish. Unfortunately, just a few seconds into the battle, my line broke. I was a little bummed, but happy that there was action on one of my traditional spots.
I retied another plastic worm onto my line and kept working a long, skinny point. About 10 minutes later, I set the hook on another big fish. I can tell when it’s a big one because I feel a lot of weight on the end of the line, but not much movement. Lunker bass rarely make a run initially and they like to stay on the bottom.
That’s exactly what happened here. I felt some slow, thumping movements and I couldn’t get the fish off the bottom. Then, the line broke again!
I was beside myself with frustration. I almost never have a bass break my line. In fact, I caught four fish over 5 pounds last summer and lots of other nice fish and never broke the line once. I stopped to think about what could have caused the problem, then realized that the monofilament line on the spool had been there at least two years. Experts recommend changing monofilament line every year and I had chosen to try to get as much out of this line as I could.
Big mistake. You can do that with some things, but definitely not fishing line and I paid a big price for trying to be frugal. Line can be expensive, especially the flourocarbons, but it’s a small price to pay when it comes to being able to consistently land big fish.
Lesson learned. The good news is, I was able to land a nice bass that measured 18 1/4 inches. It was fat, too, which proves it has been eating well. About 2:30 p.m., I decided to leave Calhoun and go over to Cedar.
That, too, proved to be a mistake. There was absolutely nothing going on Cedar. I went to all of my favorite spots and struck out. I caught only one tiny bass. It’s hard to figure out. One thing I noticed is the weedgrowth has thinned quite a bit. It almost looks like fall. The thick weeds I saw several weeks ago are sparse now. That may have a lot to do with the poor bite. It’s disappointing to have done so bad on Cedar this year, after having the best year of my life on the lake last year.
Oh well. At least Calhoun is producing now. And, it should last for at least several weeks. I’ll definitely be going back.

About Dave Hrbacek

Staff photographer and writer for The Catholic Spirit. Also, avid outdoors enthusiast with a passion for hunting, fishing and photography. Married to Julie and have four children, three boys and a girl.

View all posts by Dave Hrbacek