Tuesday, September 10, 2013

The Wait

The desire to tie on a surface lure and lob it at some gnarly bankside structure always peaks on the 1st of September. The self imposed closed season that allows Bass and Estuary Perch to go about their business undisturbed felt very very long, the warmer than usual winter temps only added tension to ‘The Wait’.

Mike, Jeff and I don’t really plan to fish the start of the season, it is a given, no plan is required. So as with seasons gone, we met as and where we do, readied gear and launched. We cracked a beer and drank a salute the start of our season; it was nice to be back on the water, talking fish, sharing our hopes and plans for the season ahead.

As often happens with fishing, expectations exceeded reality, the fish proved tough and as the light of the afternoon faded so did our hope of early season bass. It was almost dark when a tubby little shallow diver was clobbered half way back to the canoe.

It did not hit like a bass, fight like a bass nor indeed look like a bass, my mid fight call of flathead was right – flattie! Normally I am happy with by catch but…

We settled into a rhythm of lure and retrieval variations, searching for the winning combo. I was in the midst of a beer renewal when my stationary lure was boofed hard…damn missed chance (fresh beer though). A quick recast and more subtle retrieve with more pauses paid off with another solid surface boof, this time I was connected.

We don’t consider EP’s by catch, we often put a bet each way by selecting from a small group of lures that will take both species. In the grey area that contains both bass and EP’s it makes sense.

It went a little quite after that, cold air sank onto the river and we started moving around searching for more fish. After a few more boofs and a few missed fished we found a small group of EP’s along a reeded bank and connected with a few better specimens. Mike was all smiles with his first for the season.
As is often the case with Perch, they hang in schools year round, so it was no surprise when we nailed a few more in relatively quick succession, all off the top with the pulse raising boofs that tells them apart form their cousins the bass. The sound of an EP boof is totally different to that from a bass. 

The bass manage to elude us so and so the hunt for our first bass for the season continues but…..The Wait is over.

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