It is the last weekend in September of 2007. It
is also homecoming for us as we are being honored
for 35 years. You donít have to do any of the old
jokes as we got all of them from our "friends" here
in town. It was good to see some folks that we have
not seen for years. That meant that Saturday was full
of events and there was no chance to get to a pond.
Finally after everything was done on Sunday I could
head out. I had permission to go to a pond that I have
not been to for several years. The land changed hands
and the new owner lets me fish the ponds that he owns.
This is a rectangular pond, about 60 yards by 120 yards.
It lies in an east west direction with the dam on the
east end. The deepest water is about 12 feet deep.
This extends out about one third of the pond from the
dam. It then slopes up to about six to eight feet
deep for the rest of the pond. The pond has bluegill,
crappie and bass in it. It is surrounded by pastureland
and the cattle cannot get into the pond to dirty it up.
I got out about 2:00 pm in the afternoon. There was a
15-mile per hour wind from the west. It was cloudy, with
a chance of showers in the later evening. With the wind
this high I decided to take two fly rods out with me.
I had a 5 wt with a floating line and a 6 wt with a full
sinking line on it. I put a black boa yarn leech with a
bead head on the floating line and a Goldie on the
I was on the southeast part of the pond. I decided
to fish across the dam to the east side and then work
my way up the north shoreline casting into the wind.
Also if I needed to then I was headed toward the pickup
with the wind at my back.
I did not get a single fish in going across the dam.
Not one bite at all. So I turned the canoe to the
west and dropped the front anchor to keep me faced
into the wind. I was using the boa yarn leech and
casting to the shore and bringing it back slowly.
I was raising the line up to make another cast when
I found a fish on the line. This was a nice bluegill
that I never felt hit. But, I got her into the fish
On my next cast a made a few strip strikes and found
I had hooked a fish the third time I did this. They
were taking the fly so lightly that I could not detect
the take with the wave action that was going on.
Maybe this is why I did not get any fish along the dam.
A little sprinkle of rain came through about this time.
This spurred me to move along a little faster looking
for fish. If it rained much I would have to leave and
I wanted to check out more places on the pond. I would
be targeting the very active fish. Just a few casts
in each place, and then move to another location.
I picked up a few more gills as I did this. I decided
that I had enough to feed a few folks and that it was
time to look for a crappie or two to feed me. So I
started casting with the other rod with the full
sinking line on it. I though the crappie might be
deeper than the bluegills had been. It took a while
and then I started getting a few crappie. They
seemed to be farther from the shore and very scattered.
I reached the west end of the pond and paddled
across to the south side. Now I could be lazy,
as I just had to raise the back anchor if I wanted
to move. I did not get any fish for about the first
50 feet of the pond.
I had been looking ahead of me and kept seeing a
weird thing happening in the water. I was not sure
what it was, but curiosity got the better of me
and I pulled up the anchor and moved closer. When
I got about 20 feet from where the weird thing
was happening I could see what it was.
There was a school of crappie swimming just under
the surface of the water in a circle. This circle
was about 30 feet round and I could see crappie
swimming over the whole circumference of it.
Time to get a fly into that area.
I made a short cast with the sinking line and
dropped the fly near the edge of where I could
see the crappie. The fly had just touched down
when I had a fish on. This looked like it would
be great fun. In fact I got another three crappie
on the next three casts.
Here is a picture to show what I was catching.
I was getting ready to make the fifth cast when I
saw the bolt of lightening. In a count of three
I heard the thunder. For a few seconds I did
contemplate staying and getting some more crappie.
When would I ever hit something like this again?
Then there was another bolt and I was on the way.
I did get home and had everything unloaded and
put away before the rain started. I had to fillet
the fish in the garage. I also got wet getting
the guts buried. But I had fun and saw a new
behavior with crappie that I had never seen before.
I may have to try this pond again next weekend to
see if I can find those crappie again.
Hope you can get out on the water. ~ Rick
Written October 4, 2007