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Author Topic: Church of the Lake - Round Lake 10-13-2017  (Read 81 times)

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djkimmel

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Church of the Lake - Round Lake 10-13-2017
« on: October 20, 2017, 01:14:26 PM »

Yesterday (October 12, 2017, the day before this fishing report bass fishing day occurred) my Stepfather of 37 years, David Benavides, Sr. passed away. He and Mom live only a few blocks away from us. David had been suffering multiple health problems for some time but recently the doctors felt they had run out of options and he returned home under hospice care. We have a really big family with myself being the oldest on the Kimmel side - I have 2 brothers and 2 sisters still living, and 5 stepbrothers, 2 stepsisters, and then 2 more 'little' brothers because Mom and Dave had 2 sons together.

Quite a few people where in and out of Mom's house during the last couple weeks. One of my cousins and her family came and stayed with my Mom for the last few days. Her husband is a doctor so I think it helped for my Mom to have him there especially the morning David passed away in his sleep. He slept most of the last 2 or 3 days.

Between the stress of worrying about everything that goes with the passing of the patriarch of a large family, and for my Mom, and added to how sick our sweet cat Annie (she's my little friend here at the house all day days I work at home) has been at our house with all the medical care and expense that has entailed, I decided that a quiet, contemplative day at the lake by myself would be nice. My favorite church has always been the church of the lake, and having some time for private reflection can be very nice, especially when thinking about all the emotions and actions of our very big family when we start getting together.

Not sure that everyone will understand this but to each our own as some people say, and for me the church of the lake has always been my calming salvation. My little brother Nic and stepbrother Tom were going with Mom to set up the funeral details so that was covered. The next few days after would be all about family so, yes, I took a private personal day on Friday, October 13, 2017 (yes, Friday the 13th - 13 is actually my lucky number) I got up early and headed to the little rowboat waiting for me on Round Lake.

Since it is finally starting to get colder out at night - we're still behind where we would be normally - I didn't get up quite as early as previous trips but I was still pushing off shore and fishing about 20 minutes after 6 AM in the pitch black.

It was a little chilly and slightly damp out. I started real shallow since it was still pitch black out. I think it was only my 2nd cast with my consistent black Jitterbug when I got a hard. loud strike!! Set the hook and an extremely powerful fish ran sideways stripping out some line and took me right into the pads and shallow weeds clumps! Completely buried me up so I couldn't budge it. I couldn't even feel if the fish was still on the hook?!?

I was in constricted water so I only had to move about 20 feet to get to where it felt like the fish went into the weeds/pads. Still seemed like I needed an extra had to deal with everything because there was also a stiff little breeze pushing me the wrong way (approximately south to north).

I tried to lock my boat up by pushing it part way into the pads and weeds so I could stay right over where the fish had been. I was thinking I might actually have a really big dogfish on considering how hard it pulled and how it went right into and buried in the weeds... no way I'm reaching down the line in the pitch black when a couple very sharp, strong treble hooks and possibly sharp teeth are involved!!


I did my best to keep the line tight - at least I had 20 pounds test P-Line to deal with so hopefully it would not break as long as it didn't get bit through. At first, I felt nothing as I applied a little more pressure for a few seconds. Then, happily, I thought I felt one hard tug. Seconds later, the big fish somehow came loose and started to pull hard again though I could feel weeds dragging on my line still!! It tried to run further in to the pad field but somehow I managed to get it to turn and go back to the outside edge and then to the other side of the boat when my flashlight showed it was actually this really nice hawg largemouth bass!!! YES!!! And I got her! One of the strongest fighting bass I've had on all year!

David Sr. This bass is for you. Rest in peace. (He always called me 'the fisherman' and would usually ask me first 'how's the fishing been?' before we talked about anything else.)

A nice start to a needed day of peace and quiet.


My remote shutter button went on the fritz again apparently due to the combination of cool, moist air... so back to arms-length selfies for now. Thought I was on to something - 1st cast with the huge Muskie Jitterbug out deep and this overachiever grabbed it!! PLOP PLOP PLOP Sploosh!! I had been thinking for 2 or 3 weeks that the giant muskie Jitterbug might call up the bass I could hear roaming out deeper chasing open water bait in the dark!

I lost a tiny bass on muskie Jitterbug later (never ceases to amaze me how some bass will go after just about anything regardless of the reality of it ever fitting into their stomach!!!) and missed an excellent strike after that later on it too! Something really tried to crush it up on top of the big point shallow just after the sun started cracking the horizon!

This time, dawn actually kicked off the feed bag as it had been pretty quiet compared to previous starts in the dark but things were happening all over the surface now that there was some light! But it started quieting down fast too shortly after dawn, and found me going through tons of presentations to figure out the magic formula to keep the bite going on this breezy, chilly, gray morning. (It would get mostly sunny later in the morning, and shift from that to mostly cloudy off and on.)


Thought I had it figured out but good when I put on the bigger, noisier popper and this nice bass choked it!! Blasted it good on the pause and practically swallowed the popper! Regardless, I never regret a good topwater bass bite!


You know you were doing something the bass liked when it inhales your lure like this!!!

But alas back to the drawing board since because the other bass don't seem to liking what I'm selling even though I can see quite a bit of evidence that bass (and pike) are still around.


Remote shutter button working again! Missed this nice quality largemouth bass on the Sammy - AWESOME strike through!! Can't figure how we didn't hook up!?! But a miss nonetheless. I tossed in the 4" X-worm and let it float down to the bottom - it was only 4 or 5 feet deep near the edge of the shallows. Too much for this bass to ignore luckily!! I deadsticked it maybe 8 or 10 seconds and when I lifted up the bass had it and was running!! Never saw the strike... Always have a follow up throw back bait ready when you're topwater fishing!

Had the X-worm (Xtreme Bass Tackle Canadian Mist 4 inch) rigged Texposed with a 3/0 offset J hook. I had a tiny screw-lock bullet sinker - maybe 1/64th oz. - screwed into the nose. Mostly deadsticking it while occasionally giving it a couple small twitches like a jerkbait. Been helping me catch some shy, shallow bass lately.

Once again as has happened a lot on Round Lake lately, the 'offshore' and structure bite died pretty hard fairly early. Even fishing deeper and with slower lures I couldn't seem to make anything happen anymore. I could still see some bass sporadically coming up and busting some of the zillions of minnows around but I couldn't seem to get their attention with my lures...

So I repeated my late Round Lake pattern of heading real shallow along the same long stretch of shore that has been attracting feeding bass during the day. Since topwater is pretty fun and often a great option for shallow, clear, sparsely covered water I picked up the little flashy rattling walking popper.


5th times the charm! Yeah - 5...!?! Missed 4 in a row shallow on the little walking popper before this tiny keeper practically swallowed it!! Don't think any of them were big and 2 were probably skinny pike - they're all over the shallow weeds! I was able to avoid some because I saw them first. I'd just scoot them along when I came up on them.

Don't know why I'm missing so many strikes?? They are trying for it but must be not committing completely for some reason. It's still fun but kind of frustrating to get the bites without hooking and landing many of them.


Had a fun little run after that bite for a short time between the walking popper and the X-worm follow up! I didn't catch any real good bass - lots of dinks with a small keeper or two.


Tubby little keeper that walloped the X-worm on a little sand point. Since I was missing so many on the little walking popper I thought maybe they don't really want to break the surface. I just scatter cast the 4 inch X-worm to weed patches, changes in the pad edges and open sandy spots. There were definitely some bass roaming around considering all the strikes I missed and a few topwater attacks.

But tossing the finesse X-worm or my little white swimbait wasn't getting me a bunch more bites either...

So I went real skinny from there inside what few weeds were left and closer to shore. I saw one bass of unknown size smash at some minnows practically on shore! Tried to stalk it but the sneaky bass had swam back out around 30 feet to the inside 'weedline' so while I was casting up towards shore I practically ran over the bass with my rowboat!?! Shoot! Spooked it, and it looked like a keeper of about 2 pounds...

What bass were up shallow were roaming all over and scattered. The slower finesse lures weren't covering enough water fast enough for my tastes so I went back to the topwater approach making long to real long casts. And missed 7 topwater fish in a row!?! Yikes!! What the...?? Three different topwater lures!

I went to my one Sammy first. My first cast I made way up shallow and a bass knocked it up into the air right after I started walking the dog with it! Along one stretch of tattered pads I missed a couple more back to back...

I thought, okay, I'll go to the 90 Whopper Plopper. That buzzing little lure seems to work really good in skinny, clear water. First cast with it, a bass jumped on it after about 20 feet of steady, medium retrieve! I had it up on top splashing, thrashing and jumping for a few seconds and then it came off!?! Come on...?!? In about 20 casts I had 2 more bass hit it without hooking them good enough to keep them on... Can't remember what else I threw but as I say I had the same results.

I didn't see any quality bass and I couldn't figure out what the issue was with getting the bites but not hooking them up well so I gave up on the skinny water! I had just seen some bass of unknown size bust some minnows out near the weedless break to I headed straight for that spot.

I went 3 for 3 on the Sammy as soon as I moved into 5-7 fow?!? I saw 2 different groups of bass busting minnows for a brief time. Don't know why these 'deeper' bass were doing so much better at getting the lure in their mouth?? But they were all small too. For about 15 minutes after I couldn't come across either school again and got no other bites.

I was really hoping to head back to the big point and fish deeper structure the rest of the day but I didn't mention that some goofball in a jet ski decided to come out on a Friday afternoon in October (around 4:35pm) and while I was fishing the shallow spot he ran back and forth 20 times all over all the good offshore spots... just peachy...

I waited until he gave up tearing the shallows and the good spots up, and proceeded to them with hopes the bass hadn't all swam away into the unknown depths... I can't say for sure that my 'good buddy' on the jet ski killed the bite but that was the day for me. Even though I saw a few gamefish come up here and there sporadically to bust at minnows, and there were tons of small fish feeding at the surface, I couldn't buy a bite on deep cranks, topwater, Texas-rigs or any finesse bait.

I decided I had a pretty good day overall and it helped take my mind off of other things for a few hours so I called it a day and headed home to be with family for the next few days.
Logged

Help stop invasive spcies. Don't move fish between unconnected bodies of water. Clean, drain and dry your boat before launching on another water body.
Unless clearly stated as such, opinions expressed by Dan Kimmel on this forum are not the opinions or policies of Michigan BASS Nation or TBF of Michigan.
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