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A visit to the pickerel grounds.

Started elsewhere, but the fish there were not in a cooperative mood, so along about 9:30 in the morning, I called it and split for Lakeville.

Typical Lakeville bass from today

Typical Lakeville bass from today

Fished there from about 10AM until 4:30. Given the conditions I was faced with, I looked for some active, aggressive fish in shallower water first. Spinnerbaited, threw the Chatterbait, and then did some flipping in one of the remaining decent milfoil beds. No bites. Moved out beyond the weeds, and caught fish. Moved back inside the weeds, and nada. Kept trying to force the issue by going back to shallow water until it became evident that shallow was not a good place to be. In fact, I never had a hit of any kind today shallower than the outside edge of the milfoil in about 18 feet of water.

The problem was that I pretty much had to be catching pickerel if I wanted to catch bass. The key was points that extended past the edge of the weeds. If there was no flat extending out past the edge of the weeds for more than just a few yards on the end or side of a point, there was no action. And where there was action, there were pickerel.

Naturally, I spent a lot of time throwing a jig, because it always seems to catch fewer toothies than a straight plastic bait of any kind. The time I spent with the jig was like casting practice though, because there wasn’t so much as a sniff on the jig – either the BIG JIG or a little 1/4 ouncer I still had rigged up from Champlain. Threw the Oz a bunch, too. Nope.

Other than one bass and one pickerel that I got on a Grubster, every fish I caught — actually, every bite I had today — came on either a 5″ SwimFish on a 1/2 oz head, or on the drop shot, with either a black or motor oil Ribster.

And I had a LOT of bites. Caught 13 bass, and I have no idea how many pickerel. However many it was, it was a lot. At least four or five for every bass I caught. The bass were mostly between about 1,¾# and 2¾#. The pickerel were mostly 3 to 4 pounds, but my catch did include 4 or 5, five pound class Lakeville Lake Snakes. As active as the big slimers were today, I kind of expected to encounter one of Lakeville’s true giants. Never happened though.

The thing that seemed odd to me is that with all those toothy critters, I got bit off a total of once today. That was an instant cut-off on the bite with the drop shot, and it happened so late in the day that I didn’t even bother to retie it. Never got bit off on the SwimFish, and never needed to retie a lure because of frays, etc.

 

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