Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Confessions of a bass angler

I have a confession to make.

I've been posting and posting about my undying need to catch a smallie, because I've only caught a single 2" smallie ever in my life! Well, faithful readers, I haven't been completely honest with you. It wasn't that I was lying, I didn't realize I had actually caught bigger smallies before. My fish-identification skills are pretty dismal, to say the least.. But they used to be even worse, if you can believe it. That's how I didn't know I caught smallies before!

Here's me in 2009 on Intermediate Lake in Michigan, days after basically fishing for the first time:

pay no attention to the sunglasses, look at the pretty fish

I had been catching bluegill like crazy, and when I caught this I certainly didn't know what it was. I'm sure my fishing instructors/buddies told me, but I was too excited to remember.

I was going through some other old pictures, and I found a picture of the second bass I'd ever caught (after that smallie above); caught in September of 2010, in the north Bode Lake in Hoffman Estates, IL. I know slightly more about fish now, and looking at the fish in my hand, I thought... smallie?? Isn't that a smallmouth bass there!!?
I've gotten better at holding fish since then
I double checked with the good folks at windycityfishing.com, and they confirmed my suspicions. To make things even crazier, most people don't seem to catch much of anything at Bode, let alone bass, let alone a SMALLIE! Smallmouth bass aren't even listed as "present" in Bode Lake, as far as I know. Bode connects to the Fox River (Bode is quite a ways upstream), perhaps this little guy made the journey all the way just to be caught by me. That makes me feel pretty special!

So there you have it; all my complaining about not catching smallies has been for naught. Turns out, when I'm fishing for bluegill and can't identify anything else, I catch smallies. When I'm specifically targeting smallies like my life depended on it, I catch everything but smallies.

Fishing is great!

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