2013 FISHING LICENSES ARE AVAILABLE
Last Updated: April 26, 2013
Date: 4-25-13 / Time: 9:30 – 5:30
Water: Stained / Water temp: 64
Weather: Partly cloudy / Temp: 65
Another fun day of fishing on the South Fork of the Shenandoah River. I did the SP2 Trip from the State Park to Karo Landing. The River was up fairly high, about the same level as last week. The fishing was a lot like last week as well. Pretty good fishing yesterday. Got my first smallmouth on the fourth cast. I was tossing a #3 Mepps inline spinnerbait (gold blade). Got my second bass just a few minutes later, a seventeen inch smallmouth. Not a bad start, huh. Pretty good fishing for the rest of the day, three or four fish per hour all day long. Caught most of them on the spinner. Most productive pattern was working the spinner below the rock ledges, often at the back edge of the slack water. But I did get a fair number of bass roaming around in the open flat areas as well. Around 1:30 I started getting some bass with Zoom Super Flukes (green pumpkin magic). They were not hitting the fluke on the top, I had to let it sink down and swim it. Sometimes just letting it drift was the key. The fluke only worked for less than a couple of hours, but it was fun anyway. Most of the day the spinner was my go to. I did use a senko in the mouth of the second creek to get a couple of largemouth. I boated twenty-eight bass yesterday, plus a few shake offs and break offs. One break off was a real heartbreaker. I had a very large smallmouth right next to the canoe. I reached down to pull it in. I grabbed it and it slipped out of my grasp. Ping! It broke the line. I could see my spinner in it’s mouth as it swam off. Score one for the bass. On the other hand, I scored plenty of good size smallmouth yesterday. Biggest one was eighteen inches, plus the seventeen incher in the morning, and several that were fourteen or over. Solid spring fishing. The spring season is one of the easiest times to get big smallmouth. The water temperature is up fairly high and now is a great time to get out on the South Fork. I will be down in Nag’s Head next week for a bit of surfing. I kinda’ hate missing out on the fishing, as good as its been the last couple of weeks, but I likes me waves too. See my next report in two weeks. Good luck with your fishing.
Date: 4-16-13 / Time: 9:30 – 5:30
Water: Stained / Water temp: 68 weather:
Partly cloudy / Temp: 76
I fished the SP2 trip from the State Park to Karo Landing. The river was higher than last week, near three foot level. Not a lot of rocks showing. Lucked into some pretty fair fishing yesterday. Started out throwing a #3 Mepps inline spinnerbait (gold blade). My second cast got a 10” smallmouth. Nice way to start things out. When I got down to the first creek, on the left hand side of the river, I started tossing a 4” senko (green pumpkin). Got a nice 16” largemouth, along with a decent smallmouth. Back out in the river I continued to do pretty well with the spinner, getting most of my bass in the rapids around the rocks. They were usually holding towards the downriver edge of the fast water. Occasionally I would get one roaming around in open water, but the majority were caught near the rocks. It wasn’t fast paced fishing, two or three bass per hour, but it was a big step up from the last couple of weeks. The size was good, most of the smallmouth were around a foot, with a fair number over a foot. My best fish was a true South Fork lunker, a honkin’ nineteen inch smallmouth. One inch shy of citation size. I had good luck in the second creek, on the right hand side across from all the houses. There’s a submerged tree just inside the mouth that produced several largemouth with the senko. In the afternoon I started using a 4-3/8” Rapala Jointed Minnow (silver) in addition to the spinner. Caught my bass about fifty – fifty between the spinner and the minnow rest of the trip. By the end of the day I had a total of twenty-one bass, not a record breaker by any means, but still a pretty good day. Certainly a lot better than my first two trips this year. Needless to say, I was pretty happy about the size as well. I haven’t caught any bluegill as yet, but soon enough I guess. Sure was nice to see the bite pick up. It was a nice sunny day and the fish were biting. Had a real good time. Should have put on more sunblock, but my wife says I’ll never learn. Good luck with your fishing.
Date: 4-9-13 / Time: 9:30 – 4:30
Water: Slight stain / Water temp: 60
Weather: Sunny / Temp: 78
Got out on the South Fork yesterday for my second trip this year. I did my favorite trip, the SP2, from the State Park to Karo Landing. The South Fork of the Shenandoah is in great shape right now, excellent level and just that right amount of stain for good fishing. Practically no debris in the water and almost no grass on the bottom. The water temp had jumped up about ten degrees since last week, so I was hopeful the fishing would be taking off. But I was wrong, the fishing was pretty slow. I only caught four bass. Nice size smallmouth, a 13", two 14's and a 17 incher. But only four bass for the day. I tried a lot of different lures and different patterns as well. I got all four bass the same way, pulling a spinner in fairly fast water near rock ledges. The spinner was a copper blade #3 Mepps inline spinnerbait. In every case the bass were sitting in about three feet of water in a hole close to the rocks. If four fish are enough to call it a pattern, that was the winning pattern. I was surprised I didn't have any luck in the creeks. They're usually a pretty good bet in the spring, but they sure didn't pay out yesterday. Well, fishing is usually a little slow the first few trips of the year, so I wasn't real upset about the small count. It was a nice hot day. Always good to be out on the South Fork. The water is getting warmed up to good fishing temperature now and I'm confident the fishing will pick up pretty fast. So I'm optimistic about next week. Good luck with your fishing.
Date: 4-3-13/Time: 9:30 – 12:30
Water: Stained/Water Temp: 48
Weather: Sunny/Temp: Cold morning. Afternoon near 50.
After five months it was time to hit the South fork of the Shenandoah again. I enjoyed a rather character building ride out from D.C. on my motorcycle. It was in the thirties when I got out to Front Royal Canoe Co. That'll wake you up by god. The water temp was 48 degrees, so I wasn't real optimistic about a stellar day of fishing. That said, I opted for the short trip from Karo Rapids down to F.R.C.C.'s landing, a three mile trip. The river looked good. Nice level and debris free. The fishing? Well, when I get skunked –yes, I do get skunked once in a while – when I get skunked, its usually my first or maybe second trip of the season. Usually because of low water temperature. I fished for three hours yesterday with nary a bite. Tried all kinds of lures and fished all the different parts of the river, the rapids, the deeper slow moving stuff, the whole nine yards. Nada. Nothing worked. After three hours I called it quits. I met two guys in a bass boat near the end of the trip. They had caught one fish. I said, 'well, you did better than I did." Oh well. Gotta' tell you, it felt good to be back on the river no matter what. So peaceful and quite. One little tip. With the water this cold, you could really increase your odds by using live bait. Me, I'm a lure man. But in all honesty, when the bite gets really tough, its hard to beat live shiners. Listen folks,you know how it works this time of year. The water gets warmer and the fishing gets better. No big secret about that. So I'm hoping it will be a little warmer next week and the fishing will be a bit better than yesterday. But really, its always fun to do a little canoeing and fishing on the South Fork. Good luck with your fishing.
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