Kayak Bass Fisherman switches to Salt

When people talk about saltwater fishing most people immediately have visions of Louisiana.. I’m not a saltwater guy, pretty much a bass fisherman and that’s it. I dream of 5lb smallmouth.

I recently had a chance to return to the saltwater to fish, but it’s in a location that probably not on many peoples radar scope, South Mississippi. Woke a 3am, 15 minutes later I was headed south. Stopped on the way in Hueytown to pick up my buddy Mike (The one that talked me into this salt stuff) By 5am we were headed south again.

We rolled into Shepard State Park at 10am on fire to setup camp and get on the water. Shepard is a nice place although it could use some work and could use some pest control for the mighty brave raccoons.

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Not long after we got there the rest of the crew showed up from the morning fishing adventure, sadly the news wasn’t good. Fishing had been tough that morning and the temperatures had been close to freezing that morning. Not what we wanted to hear but still we were ready to persevere.


So by 1230 we were on the water ready to wear the fish out. Somebody forgot to tell the fish! This was a new place to me although we had passed it before. The bite was tough and very few came to hand, although what did make it in the cooler were nice ones. No one had the skunk; even I managed a dink flounder. Mike caught his best red to date and Matthew caught a nice red also.








The evening was spent around the campfire with hamburgers and hot dogs  Steve was nice enough to bring us enough firewood for two nights! Mike cooked up a peach dump cobbler in the Dutch oven that was spot on for some hungry fisherman. That’s one nice thing about camping when you go on these fishing trips is sitting around the fire talking fishing and learning new things.











Day two we were met up with Steve at the boat launch. Mike had been here before but for the other three of us it was all new. The setup was perfect, it was an area that had not been affected by the recent influx of freshwater, the winds were nonexistent and the current was moving. That’s pretty much where it ended, it wasn’t meant to be. I did more paddling than I did fishing, recent dredging in the area may have affected the fish. Maybe it is just too early? I caught one legal flounder.

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So we all pulled out and loaded up to fill our bellies. I had an idea for the perfect place to go for that all though I had never been there. So we pull in to Bozo’s Seafood Market and Deli. You give your order to a lady at a back-corner table. She writes it on a white paper sack, which she plops on an adjacent counter. You help yourself to a soft drink from a cooler or the soda fountain and browse the seafood market in back or the shelves of spice mixes. Then you pick up that same sack, now filled with fresh seafood, or perhaps a po’boy, and eat at a paper-towels-equipped table against the opposite wall. It doesn’t get any more down-home.

bozo-po-boy bozo-counter







After lunch we had a new plan; and we headed to the new launch point. It was not meant to happen, we arrived to discover the wind had picked up and was now blowing a steady 15 mph. The place we had in mind was in the wide open and there was no protection from the wind.

After a 5 minute discussion on what to do we decided our only option was to back up and punt. A new location with wind protection in mind was decided and off we went again. At the new location it was confirmed that we made the right choice, wind was being block, somewhat and the water was looking good. Fishing the rest of the afternoon everyone scored. Not too bad for a place that none of us had been to before. By the time I decided to head back toward the truck I soon discovered that I was the only one still on the water. I think everyone else was done for! Arms like jelly if you know what I mean.

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We said goodbye to Steve and headed on back to camp. Cleaned up and headed to town for some good food cooked by someone else! We ate at the Country Gentleman restaurant. Good food if you are ever in the area!

While we didn’t kill them we all still had a good time, I think we are just a wee bit early for the fish to move up into the bayous. I think the recent influx of freshwater and cold temperatures has set back the movement of fish into the shallows by a few weeks.

To fish the saltwater there is not that much to invest; your bass rod and reels will work fine in the bayous. Tackle to fish with is a minimal investment too.

You might say why MS when I can go to LA? A MS out of state saltwater license is only $34.29 for a year compared with Louisiana at $90.

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Susquehanna Fishing Magazine.

So your looking for something to read, new fishing tips, a new fishing technique or kayak/river fishing in general. Go by and check out Susquehanna Fishing Magazine. They have lots and lots of useful and informative articles.

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Black Friday shakedown

Made plans to fish Friday, had something new that I was a hankering to test out. Some people didn’t make it but us that did made the best of it. It was a nice day to be on the river, and we were on water that we hadn’t wetted a line in for quite a long time.

It turned out to be a good choice and we were doing well for quite awhile this morning. But it was like a switch was flipped and then we couldn’t buy a bite to save our life. The cold front passed through and boy could you tell it!

Anyway here is a little fish porn for those that couldn’t make it:

First slime in the new boat!!!

Mike got in on the action too:

Brown bass are the best!!!

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October BIG BASS Tournament

Here are the rules for this month’s tournament!

October Tournament Rules

1)Must be a SouthernRiverFishing.com member beforehand.

2)Each participant will have a ONE fish Stringer, in which all black bass are eligible.

3)To become eligible, fish must be photographed on an approved measure board and released quickly as possible.(Mouth closed and facing left please)

4)Pictures posted on this thread will count, All fish must be photographed and weighed.

5)Tournament fish must be caught from any free flowing river, stream or creek in the U.S. NO lakes or ponds!

6)All tournament fish must be caught using artificial lures. NO live bait!

7)Participants are on the honor system.(There will be a “PRIZE” for the winner!)

8)Watercraft used must be human propelled, no Engines or Trolling motors.

9)Contest runs from October 1st to October 31st.

10)Smallmouth Bass get a 1″ addition.

10)Approved measuring board: Hawg Trough any branded, Rapala Folding Ruler, The golden rule, BPS folding ruler, any other that is pre approved.


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Hay’s Canadian Adventure!

I am going to do my best to recount the events of the last week.  I’m surprised I was able to sleep the night before our departure.  The plan was to get to International Falls, MN (the coldest city in the mainland US) by plane, catch a shuttle across the border to Nestor Falls, Ontario, then hop a seaplane to Delaney Lake Lodge.  There are no roads to access the lodge, so literally all supplies are flown in via seaplane, including guests.  The first night in Canada, we stayed at the Nestor Falls Motel, which was pretty close to roughing it.

At least they had a restaurant bar next door, complete with cold Labatt Blue and a pool table to pass the time.

The next morning, we boarded the seaplane to Delaney Lake.  Here is my dad

The views from the seaplane were really incredible.  Canada appears to be almost all water.

We arrived at the lodge and took a minute to get the lay of the land.

After dumping our stuff, it was about 10:00, and we were eager to hit the water.  We enlisted the help of a guide, and oue first stop was for lake trout.  Catching lake trout is a lot like bottom fishing for snapper; drop to the bottom and wait for the bite.  Within the first 5 minutes, I was rewarded with the first fish of the trip.  We were fishing in about 60′ of water here.  Also, it was warm enough to wear shorts and sunscreem the first day

My next fish hit within the next few minutes.  The lake trout bite was good.

My dad quickly got the feel for it as well

Doubled up

Aftr catching a few lake trout, we decided to try our hand at casting on the banks for smallies and Northerns.  The first Northern of the trip was a 34″ that my dad caught on a Mepps 5.

Here is a nice smallie my dad caught in 35′ while jigging for trout.  The bigger smallies were out deep.  This lake was crystal clear.  You could see the bottom at 20′.

I got in on the Northern pike action

Actually, I think this is dad’s 34″

5 minutes before we headed in for dinner, my dad caught the ever elusive muskie! Our guide said that this was the first one he’s seen boated this year on his trips.

The Canadian sunsets were really stunning.  The sky seems so big up there

The leaves were already turning for fall.  This waterfall came from Muksie Lake, which was a lake that only holds muskies and lakers.  We’d hit that later in the week.

Day 2- Lodge

My guide told me that if I wanted a shot at a big smallie that I needed to be at the dock at 5 am when he clled the dead minnows.  I popped out of bed at 4:50 am with bronzebacks on the mind.  My early morning was rewarded with some decent ones.

Late on the second day, my dad and i took the boat ou ourselves before dinner to try to find one of the elusive big smallmouth.  Throwing a pumpkinseed tube, I got a good bite on my second cast.  After a thrilling fight, I brought this 35″ Northern Pike to the net.

On the English River, we were primarily fishing for walleyes and Northerns, with some smallmouth mixed in.  The English River is amazing.  Bald eagles everywhere.  It is like a huge chain of lakes and bays, with heavy current in the main channels.  Walleye and Northerns stack up on the rocky points and deep humps.

My first sauger.

Day 3 (I think)

My brother in law and my father in law.


Shore lunch

Back to the fishing

Day 4 Muskie Lake- after a steep hike up the ridge

We left Muskie Lake after a few hours with no fish.  I had a 3′ muskie grab my gigiantic spinnerbiat as I was lifting it out of the water.  He was on for maybe 2 or 3 seconds, then back to the deep.  My guide still called that a good day.  Back to the lodge lake.


Lake trout on!

Did I mention that it was cold, rain, and windy most of the trip?

Dinnertime was always fun

My personal best 22 1/2″ walleye the last day

Not to be outdone, my brother in law’s 22 1/2″ walleye

More scenery.  Rock bluffs everywhere on the English River

More shore lunch.  Everything fried in LARD

Nevermind, here are the 22 1/2″ walleyes

Decent smallie.  They were fat up there

Here is our guide Robert.  He was great and put us on fish the whole trip.

Time to leave already?

This is a trip I hope that I never forget.  The best time that my father and I have ever had together.  I hope to be able to go back someday.

P.S.- Please forgive the sideways pictures.  Not sure why they rotated when I posted.

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Lures from ICAST part two

Continuation of the Lures from ICAST.

Up first is the Crappie magic crankbaits from Strike King, anybody tried these? I think in certain situations these would be great! http://www.strikeking.com/

If your tired of throwing the frog for your topwater you might want to try Flip in the Bird. Looks pretty cool but I don’t know if it’s going to be better than a frog?? http://flipinthebird.com/

Speaking of frogs lets not forget an old standby that’s been around for years and is still a great bait. The scumfrog, they are still made in Mississippi. http://www.scumfrog.com/ The particular one on the picture is the walker, made to be able to walk the dog.

I ran across a neat product from Castiac, actually two different baits but very similar. There were tons of Alabama Rigs style at the show but this one looked like the ones I would buy. http://www.castaicswimbait.com/


And the topwater umbrella rig the Frog Brigade.

And the last one is called the spintube, it’s a really neat fly that is made to be used with a spinning rod. I really liked this product, all the way from Finland.

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Lures from ICAST

I thought I would post of some of the lures that I ran across at ICAST that I thought was unique or might be of interest to someone. But I got to say, there was so much that I missed a bunch of cool stuff I’m sure.

First up is the Poppin Phattie from Snagproof, it was design by Ish Monroe. This frog has a flat concave front for that popping action but on the inside it has a rattle that slides back and forth as you pop it. I thought it was very different and worth a try for you frog fans.        http://www.tacklewarehouse.com/Snag_Proof_Ishs_Poppin_Phattie_Frog/descpage-SPIPP.html

I ran across the new Rapala Balsa Extreme Swimmer. This is a balsa bait that is encased in plastic, suppose to give it a really nice action. I thought it was a nice really looking bait, it also comes in the non jointed minnow version too.http://rapalaworld.blogspot.com/2012/07/more-about-new-rapala-bx-swimmer.html

ABT Lures had a new topwater/ swimbait called the King Dawg that was really nice looking, if you don’t know ABT they are famous for a swimbait called the Banshee. They also had a very cool umbrella rig but then again those things were everywhere. But check the King dawg out, there’s a nice Youtube video showing the action of this bait. http://www.abtlures.com/

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Ran across a spinnerbait that looked really different, it’s Megastrike’s strike back spinnerbait. It looks like a regualr spinnerbait but the hook will swivel a 180 degrees. It keeps the fish from getting leverage to be able to throw the bait, it’s also suppose vibrate more than a standard spinnerbait.                      http://www.megastrikefishingproducts.com/shop/strikeback-spinnerbait/

Live target had a new hardbait frog that looked pretty nice, it won best new hardbait for ICAST. http://www.livetargetlures.com/

I’m a big fan of Culprit worms and they had a pretty nice looking big ole fat worm called the Fat Maxx, big worms for big fish right? http://www.classicfishingproducts.com/

I have more to come so look for part two on Lures of ICAST.

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Mini Gear Grabbar

I wanted to tell you guys about a product I ran across at ICAST that I really liked a lot. It’s called the Mini Gear Grabbar, check that spelling it’s a little different. But this thing is sweet for us fellas that enjoy fishing with crank baits, although it’s designed to be used for many lures. It also won Best of Show – Tackle Management at the show this year. Take a look for yourself:

This thing should fit about anywhere and comes with double sided dots to mount it with. If your worried about those exposed hooks dangling on bottom they sell a kit that is two of these mini grabbar bars:

No hooks to get you but your bait is there and ready to go. Can you say sweet or what? You can also lay things on top of the shelf there and it will hold it still.

Need one bigger, you can get the original one:


I got one at the show to try out and I will be mounting that sucker asap. I will let you know how much I love it after I’ve used it on a few trips.Their website is http://www.magneticmarineproducts.com/

For some tips on mounting this thing watch the video below:

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Jackall Lures New Boil Trigger 100

Jackall Lures new Boil Trigger 100 is a really neat looking hardbait that is a popper and a pencil bait all in one.When sitting in the water it’s going to sit at a 45 degree angle with the tail end down in the water. But your going to pop this thing with it spitting water like a regular popper but your also going to walk this thing too. With the jointed tail it’s going to have a real kick to it.

I think it was one of the best baits I saw at ICAST. It’s going to come in several colors so you can buy more than one. Be on the lookout for them.


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Jackson Kayak’s latest boat

Jackson Kayak introduced a new kayak today at ICAST. Building on the success of the Coosa and the Cuda Jackson latest edition is a 12 foot version of the Cuda. It gives the kayak angler a boat that can do both river fishing and saltwater fishing.


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