Early last spring I got that sort of itch that only time on the water can scratch, probably after too many episodes of River Monsters. So Lily and I loaded up a kayak and headed down to John's lake. It was afternoon when we arrived, probably close two 2pm if my memory serves me well, and some of the early day anglers were pulling up in their bass boats finished for the day. They said the fish weren't biting and they were throwing craw fish jigs and worms, but with little to no response. I guess they were hoping that the fish were in their spawning areas. My daughter assumed from this and the 30,000 dollars or so that these men had invested in the pursuit of bass that we were not going to catch anything either. I admit, the first few tactics I tried seemed to reinforce her theory, and she quickly lost interest.
"So change it up,' I said out loud to her or maybe to myself, 'lets go small."
She tied on a small, white Rooster Tail, and I went with yet another crank bait yet smaller. As we approached a new cove I noticed she had completely lost interest and was just sort of trolling the spinner bait behind us with the rod hanging over the side of the kayak. She was bored. Then it happened, either she snagged a big clump of weed or hooked a fish but either way she was awake now and turning the reel handle. "Fish on, dad," she exclaimed. We watch way too many fishing shows, but it quickly becomes your favorite expression especially when its your little girl. Somehow seeing them catch fish is even better than when I do, and I love to catch fish.
At first the bass were small but as the afternoon wore on they became more and more consistent. Every once in a while we broke the 3 pound barrier and I had started fishing an in line white spinner myself on my ultralight. It was a rooster tail but a size bigger with a hammered silver blade. My daughter was now almost tired of catching bass, you just can't please them, when she hit into a nice pickerel. This was a gorgeous fish and got her interest going again. We boated 4 more pickerel that afternoon and on the way back I busted well over the 4 pound range with my little ultralight spooled with the 4 pound mono. What a day, and maybe this will help someone else when the bass forget their lines and aren't playing to script.
When we got back to the ramp more boats were there and they were telling us how it wasn't worth it today just as my little girl was hooking up on another one. "Well, I guess she doesn't know any better,' I said to the man,'so she just keeps catching them."