Tuesday, May 10, 2011

(Round) Valley of the Sun

For my lunch break, I visited Round Valley Recreation Area, intent upon fishing the pond, 20 or 25 acres of clear water--not nearly so clear as the reservoir--separated by a long dike, and featuring a swimming beach. As I made the long walk, grateful for exercise, I felt compelled to fish the reservoir on my left as well, but didn't have time.

Sun beat down on my forehead and on the water so intensely I knew catching a bass would be a tough nut to crack. But shade protected part of the corner where my sun had caught an 18-inch largemouth a couple years ago. I hoped I'd get a take. But nothing happened. I had fished my 7 1/2- inch Chompers worm, no weight, thoroughly in shallow water and down to 10 or 12 feet. As I moved down the path, casting as I went, at first it seemed hopeless, but within ten minutes or so I was in the flow, fishing with intent, and I knew directly that this is how results always come. Each of my casts served the purpose.

I came upon a pair of small downed tree trunks reaching into the pond from a bush extending over shallows. I got my first cast in close, my second in six to eight feet of water just where perhaps the tips of the small trunks extended. The line jumped and began to move off. I set the hook. For the first moments, I thought I had hooked my first real good one of the year. Then I knew I had a good fish, but nothing so special. I measured it at 15 1/2 inches, about two pounds.

Answering Danial's comment on Manasquan Reservoir, I just use a portable Humminbird graph recorder. They told us at the visitor center bass fishing had been very good all week, but people I spoke to Saturday hadn't done well. Most of the afternoon a lot of sun hit the water. And when clouds finally came, so did ferocious wind. My hope is that next time we fish the reservoir 1. We get a battery that is fully charged 2. The cables hold up. 3. It's not so windy and sunny. I know that during the summer fishing is typically tough. These bass see a lot of lures, so live bait fisherman have an ace up the sleeve. I enjoy using live bait in the winter for bass, but during the warm water season it's just my own preference to get them to hit a lure. It's a game to figure out what they might take, which has something in common with fly fishing. 

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