6/16 – 6/17/2015 – Mazonia and Flooded Rivers

Day 1 -

We went up to Visit Rachel’s Dad at his new house, and I was given the thumbs up for fishing. Unfortunately, between the time I planned to get up there and we actually went, excessive amounts of rain blew out all of the rivers.

The other bad (good) part of the trip was that I didn’t take many pictures because I was trying to conserve my cell phone power, being as I was fishing from dawn till dusk every day.

First spot was one of the bridge crossings on the Mazon river. I sat and stared at it longingly, because I just knew there were all the Suckers and Red Horse I wanted to catch in there somewhere, but there was no place to even stand where you could get a line out. I looked at it for a little while, and then moved on to Mazonia. I drove around hitting the little lakes on the North Unit, and started catching little sunfish. I made my way down to Carp and Gar Lake for gar. It took me a good 45 minutes to walk in to a fishable spot at the channel that connects them, which made me feel like a fishing Kayak is a worthy investment. I tried some inline spinners, and got nothing. I switched to rope lures, and had several follows by longnose gar back to my feet where I was standing in the water. I figure-8’ed them just like musky, but they were not hitting. This water is SUPER clear, and while they were interested in the lures, they wouldn’t take them.

After I left there, I headed to the South Unit lakes and caught a bunch of sunfish. I should have kept them, but it was still early in the day, and I wasn’t really prepared for it. 20150616_095712 20150616_150006 20150616_053220I should have got a picture of the red ear, but my phone was at 5% and won’t take pictures at that point. It was probably the biggest sunfish I’ve ever caught. They were all hitting hard on Carolina Rigs on the bottom.

I also caught this little top minnow, which I was convinced was a new species, but Ben Cantrell crushed my hopes and dreams, and informed me it was just the male pattern of Blackstriped Topminnow, which I already had caught.20150616_145657

 

I also headed over to Kankakee where it meets Rock Creek, in the hopes that the creek might be flooded, but not have so much flow.

Oops.

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Day 2

Started at Monster Lake, at the Granary Creek cutoff. I caught a few nice bluegill there, and a couple little ones, which promptly became flathead bait. The bite was pretty slow, and I didn’t get any flatheads – but I live near a super flathead spot, so I’ll just have to hit it when the waters are right.

Late Afternoon, I went down to Ponderosa, which has a 10 sunfish limit, and caught a nice mix of bluegill, redear, and green sunfish. Right before I ran out of worms (that doesn’t happen too often). Yellow Perch started biting, hitting #40 of the 50 species I want to catch this year.

Yellow Perch - Perca flavescens – Angling Species #41 / 2015 Species #40
Yellow Perch – Perca flavescens – Angling Species #41 / 2015 Species #40

Went back to Duane’s and cleaned the sunfish, which took forever since I am terrible at it. However, after watching a quick youtube video on how to clean and de-bone perch, I made quick work of them. I’m a much better perch cleaner than bluegill cleaner.

All in all, I had a great time. It was rainy, muddy, and flooded and I got enough hiking in to last me a while but I’ve got a huge number of spots that are already scouted fully for when I go back up there. I have to get a redhorse, something about them appeals to my catfishing nature.

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