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Eric

Cold water bassin'

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Um, second vid? Which is the same guy giving the seminar in the first vid.

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I guess if the idea is to show who is more "extreme" some won't be happy until there's a pic or vid (or in some cases, a lengthy "story") at midnight in a blizzard with a smallmouth caught on topwater.

 

Remember when there was a time when merely catching a smallmouth in November or December was cool?

 

How quickly some of us have become spoiled. ;-)

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Not more extreme , I'm not trying to out macho anyone. Just to give people a chance to think about different options . rarely does only one way work, fish how you enjoy , it doesn't matter to me .

 

I like to try different things, it's how I'm wired. I'll try something, if it doesn't work, at least I've learned something new about fishing . Sometimes like topwinters in winter, you find out it's possible but not really worth the time and effort. Again I've learned something .

 

That is all my posts are about, sharing what I've learned and maybe getting folks to thinking , hmmmm , I wonder If . If and why , two great words . Education isn't that one of our principles ?

 

If you haven't tried it how can you say something doesn't work ?

 

I agree with Doug Stange that most folks don't start fishing aggressively enough. Why start slow and work up to aggressive ? Start as aggressive as possible and work your way back is the way I prefer . So far , I've been pleased with the results .

 

If that's not you, cool , be yourself . Fishing is supposed to be fun, go have fun .

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Winter topwater success for river smallmouth? Prove it. It goes against the science of the physiology and behavior of smallmouth bass in cold water.

 

It's like going on a photography forum and saying, "I saw Bigfoot!"

 

If true, it would (or should) turn that forum upside down. People should question it, and want to know more. The silence shows me a few things ... they don't know any better, don't care, or don't care to get into it.

 

I don't just "believe it" because someone said it on the internet.

 

If your'e slinging in a warm water influence, a la treatment plant outflow, or somewhere that, for whatever reason, the water is considerably warmer than the rest of the river in winter, I could understand some success. Otherwise, I just don't think it's possible.

 

You've posted some crazy shit over the years. Heck, Warner Bridge was CLOSED due to ice flows that were big enough to damage the damn bridge! Yet you were posting you were still catching river smallmouth. How and the hell is that even possible???

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Eric

 

it's a big river and I know it very well . Between changes in gradient , bottom composition , angle of light and other factors there are times and places where you can find open water when others are froze over, if you know the river . you weren't down here, how often have you ever been here in winter, how do you know what's open ?

 

as far as topwaters in winter being akin to big foot, that is your opinion . I have no idea why that eats at your craw . Maybe it's because I don't take pictures and you are someone who only believes it happened if it's a picture. I am one of those old time type cats that will take a man at his word . you choose not to believe , big damn deal . once again have you ever tried ? remember it wasn't that long ago folks "knew' you couldn't catch smallmouth in winter . all the books said so now it's everywhere you look, catch cold water smallmouth . even fisheries biologists will tell you they don't know everything there is to know about any particular species of fish .

 

consider this, smallmouth use barriers to catch prey . the surface is one of the ultimate barriers . the bottom has been choked with algae for a good long time before the coldwater and the fish started feeding up . it's now coldwater , it's still an algae choked bottom and the fish are still feeding up . it's an area of slower flow off the main channel, less than 4 feet deep, the shad are there and the cold is doing a real number on them . you can see them floundering on the surface and you can see them being eaten off the surface . you use a topwater and on occasion you catch a smallmouth bass doing so . now is that too hard to see how that is going on ?

 

Open your mind, it seems if it's outside of your personal experience, it just can't be .

 

I am now done with this subject .

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Eric

Someday you should take Norm for a day long outting on the Fox And Norm you should do the same for Eric on the Kank. Now those reports would sure make for an interesting read.

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Ron

 

I've fished with Eric before up on a creek off the Fox. he whomped me, no doubt he can catch fish . I've never doubted he could or does catch fish , I know I can catch fish. That's not the issue here .

 

This issue is one of respecting your fellow man's word and basically publically calling him a liar . Why, because it seems that he cannot accept things that he has not personally experienced and will tell you something that he has never tried to do can't be done. I don't have enough experience on the Fox to try and tell someone who does what's possible there and would not presume to do so . Unfortunately the same courtesy and respect for the others knowledge of a river he has fished for over 50 years is not returned .

 

He sent a message to the InFisherman site about the winter topwater thing, they never bothered to post an answer. He offered to pay for a video of one being caught , including me in that offer knowing I don't believe in taking photos of fish . lack of respect for another's beliefs .

 

This latest round of stuff has burnt the bridge down . I don't think our trading trips on each other's home water would solve anything .

 

I do thank you for your thoughtfulness and effort .

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Topwater success for winter river smallmouth. Re-read that and think about it and the company you're in here. It's a pretty darn outrageous claim, worthy of turning even In-Fisherman on their ear. (Your phone and e-mail should be abuzz from them looking for answers!) It's tough to take at face value because it goes against what science says about smallmouth bass physiology and behavior in very cold water. Slow, sluggish, deeper, and finicky are some of the words used to describe them. Suspended ... on a good day.

 

I've spent a fair share of time in the neoprenes chasing cold water river smallmouth with the float-n-fly, etc., and everything I've experienced aligns with what I've read, heard, and watched ... and corroborated with other winter smallmouth anglers. Jonn Graham, Phil Fiscella, and Kamala wring a bell?

 

Rivers are rivers. Open water in winter is caused by current, or a warmer influence such as a natural spring or man-made discharge. Would love to know the types of areas you've had topwater success for winter river smallmouth, under what types of conditions, and how often? You're the only person I've ever heard talk about it ,,, and as if it's some mind-expanding technique that's viable (re: repeatable) for the winter smallmouth angler's bag of tricks.

 

I mean come on Norm! If I were on a bird watching forum and I said I've got golden eagles around my bird feeder but I don't believe in taking pictures, nobody else has ever seen them, and you should just open your mind to the possibility, you'd probably think I was a bit off my rocker ... even if I had 50 years of bird watching experience and wrote some groovy stories about it.

 

And FWIW, I didn't give you any whoopin' on the Fox creek. The heat, humidity, and mosquitoes did. That was a hot spring day and the waders and walk made it worse. I probably ended up with poison ivy, as usual.

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Eric

 

I'm not claiming to be in some sort of super elite status or better than the guys you have mentioned . Basically it boils down to is that due to my own mental makeup I'm the only guy that for whatever reason you wish to ascribe it to put in the extreme amount of time and effort for such little success . I doubt In-Fisherman would be interested in anything with that little payoff . One guy I have talked to about said to him I had an obsession bordering very precariously on the line of insanity . Looking back on how obsessed I got with catching very large smallmouth for a number of years and all I did to accomplish that , yes both were an obsession. Whether it dipped into insanity is open for discussion . Well , except for my wife, she has already told me I am crazy for fishing/wading in coldwater .

 

We all know how hard it is to catch smallmouth bass in a river in cold water . That is why I say it is not worth my time to continue fishing topwaters in winter anymore . It is just too much effort for much too little reward .

 

I learned how to catch smallmouth bass in rivers in coldwater in both high and low flows. I started with livebait, moved to livebait/lure combos. Jigs/soft plastics, tubes, jigs/floats, jig/pig, spinnerbaits, crankbaits, rattlebaits, swim jigs , swimbaits, soft and hard jerks , cigar style worms t-rigged and wacky rigged , minnow baits, streamers and flies . Used floats, 3 way rigs, split shot rigs, Carolina rigs, drop shot rigs , dead sticking , just a hook with no weight added . Nothing no one else hasn't tried and with varying degrees of success on my part . Would I use any of them again, yes depends on my mood/gut feeling of what the conditions call for .

 

topwaters are the only thing I'm not willing to use again . Repeatable success, if doing it more than once counts than yes it was. Worth doing again, hell no . Mind expanding, private matter .

 

I am willing to let it go at that if you will . as far as I'm concerned it's a closed chapter in my fishing experience . The best that came of it was what I mentioned in the cancer thread. If I could convince myself mentally to keep on trying and believing I could succeed in the face of yea much fishlessness then it was much easier to convince my self that I would beat cancer .

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