Friday, July 19, 2013

Catching Up: a photographic journal

It's been far too long since I've posted anything to the blog. There's been a lot going on around TNA headquarters, but we've still managed to get out and catch a few fish. I figured the easiest way to catch up was to share some photos from our recent adventures, and just give a few details as necessary.

Little River Canyon, 16 June 2013. We met up with another Alabama fly fisher named Matt and tried to help him get into some bigger Redeye Bass... but we were unsuccessful on that front. Matt was a really nice guy, and I look forward to our next chance to fish together. As we've come to expect around here, Kelly caught the best Redeye of the day as well as a small Striper.

Kelly may have had the best luck with the fish, but the real "catch of the day" was a large Gray Rat Snake that we encountered while he was crossing the river. He was not happy with me when I caught him... but a beautiful animal regardless.

Cahaba River NWR, 25 June 2013. The water was a bit high and a little murky... and I knew it would be a pretty good day for bass on the surface. Any ideas I had about catching a carp pretty much went out the window however.

I landed the first decent fish of the day...

and Kelly landed the second...

Somehow we forgot to bring our usual wet wading footwear (hardsole neoprene SCUBA dive boots), but I had on my Chaco sandals so I was gonna be okay. Kelly was wearing slip on Crocs... so we stopped by the Dollar General not far from the river and acquired the highly fashionable wading footwear pictured below.

Same bass as pictured above

I ended up landing the best fish of the day (a rare occasion around here) which measured right at 17".

Cypress Creek, 26 June 2013. A long awaited trip to one of our favorite fishin' holes. There may not be anything in freshwater as beautiful as a Cypress Creek Longear.

Kelly caught the big fish of the day, a 17" Smallmouth, but swears there was a much larger one that she missed.

Hiwassee River, 29 June 2013. Finally fished the Hiwassee above the Apalachia Powerhouse for Smallmouth. Yes they're there, but I wasn't really impressed. The wading was challenging to say the least, and the best Smallmouth of the day is pictured below. I know there are better fish in there, but the effort is not worth the return in my opinion.

We found a dead male Dobsonfly as we were walking along the railroad tracks by the river on our way back to the car. Just thought I would share for those of you who have never seen what a Hellgrammite (the inspiration for the original Woolly Bugger pattern) grows up to be.

Conasauga River, 30 June 2013. Fished a tiny piece of a river located within the boundaries of Tennessee that seems a bit more like Alabama because it is part of the Coosa River watershed. It is the only river in Tennessee that is not part of the Mississippi River drainage. The water was gin clear and before we got in we could see plenty of fish cruising the river including some decent sized Buffalo and Freshwater Drum... but unfortunately none of those were caught.

An Alabama Bass (Micropterus henshalli) in Tennessee.

A Tennessee Redeye Bass (M. coosae).

Kelly caught a decent Largemouth right before we exited the water, and it put up one heck of a fight for its size. If you've never caught a Largemouth from a swift flowing river, I can assure it's not exactly the same beast that dwells in a farm pond.

Closer to home, 09 July 2013. I caught one of the nastiest Largemouth Bass I've ever personally seen in our urban creek close to home. There is clearly something not right about its tail. Makes you wonder... what's in the water?

Authentic reaction, not staged for the camera

Cahaba River, 17 July 2013. Only two bass were landed this day. I caught one 9" bass while Kelly caught one 19" bass.

A little lightweight for its length, but still a really nice fish

The fish never leaped and fought more like a catfish trying to run deep. For a moment, we thought it might have been a carp because the take at the surface was so delicately sipped.

Well, I guess that pretty much sums up the highlights of the last month or so of fishing. I'm still being outfished by a girl... so some things never change.

I'm glad to be getting back into the swing of things though, and I hope to be posting a few reviews in the coming days.