The plan for Tuesday was for Casey, Jamie and I to get out for a day of fishing some of those toothy chain pickerel we so love to battle. Sadly Jamie had to stay home to work on his deck, bummer. Sorry Jamie we just had to go without you, this time.
We headed toward Chipman to fish the Salmon river. I love this river as it has so many hot spots for pickerel to hangout. We certainly were not disappoint. We fished a long way down river as well as up river.
Casey Lands The First Fish of The Day
I’m a bit of a casting maniac and usually the lucky one who lands the first fish of the day but when I made my first cast of the day and that pickerel smacked my bait I was a little too eager and yanked it right out of it’s mouth.
Casey on the other hand kept a cool head and didn’t miss his first strike, a nice fat 22” chain pickerel with a real attitude. He wasn’t done yet because two seconds later he had another pickerel in the boat.
A few minutes later I landed my first and was on the scoreboard. Score 2-1 in Casey’s favour but not for long as Casey increased his lead to 3-1.
It took me a while but I caught up and then it was just back and forth. He would land one and then I would. We even had a few double headers going which is always fun. What a great day.
It didn’t take Casey long and he landed the first 24” pickerel of the day. I was close with a 22” and then a 23” and finally I landed a 24”. It was just one of those perfect days of fishing fun.
I don’t remember when but at some point I gained the lead and kept it for the rest of our day.
Always Trying To Beat Our Personal Best
Casey, Jamie and I are always looking for that next personal best, of course, which reminded me of the first day I took my fishing buddy Roland fishing pickerel. That was between 25 or 30 years ago.
This was the first time Roland had fished chain pickerel or even seen a chain pickerel.
I took him to Cassidy lake the day after a tournament so we didn’t expect to see much action but we were so wrong.
On my first cast I hooked and landed my personal best, a 24 inch toothy pickerel. On Roland’s first cast he hooked into something that gave him quite a battle. When he finally got it to the boat he wasn’t about to touch it.
I reached down and landed it. When we put the measuring tape to it he had a 26” pickerel. I had never seen one that big and haven’t seen one that big since.
At one point the three of us all had 24” chain pickerels as our personal best. Then on August 15, 2010 Jamie beat his personal best with a 24 5/8 pickerel. That same day I landed a new personal best with a 24 1/2 inch pickerel.
Then on August 16th, 2010 Casey landed a 24 1/2 inch pickerel to beat his personal best.
However on September 30th, 2010, again when the three of us were together, this time fishing French Lake I hooked and landed my first 25” pickerel for a new personal best.
Casey has caught a lot of 24” pickerel over the years but is still trying to get that new personal best. This might just be the year we all break our personal bests because I landed a 24 3/4 inch pickerel and then another 25” pickerel.
Both of these chunky pickerel, along with 8 or 10 more that were close in size, were caught in a little hot spot I took Jamie to a couple of years ago and can be quite productive.
I’m hoping that the day Casey beat his personal best that I’m with him to share that moment. I know how good it feels and wouldn’t miss it for anything.
The Final Score For The Day
By the end of the day my arms and back were worn out from all the casting and fighting. I was a bit dehydrated and had a big headache but I haven’t felt so good in a long time. What a perfect day.
At the end of the day as the light was fading fast the finally tally was Jim 28, Casey 17 and Jamie, oh yeah he had to stay home and work on his deck.
It was one of those days we didn’t catch many small pickerel under 20” and there is still a couple of months before we have to hang up the fishing rods for the year so there is still hope for beating that personal best.
When I opened my tackle bag Casey saw a bait that a friend had mentions helped him to have a great day of pickerel fishing so I gave it a try. First cast a big fat pickerel smacked it and then nothing. For an instant I had new confidence in that particular bait but when nothing happened after that first pickerel I went back to a real confidence bait and even though I tried various baits all day long I still didn’t get the action I was getting on my confidence bait.
I have confidence baits for all the species I fish and love it when I find a new bait that makes it to my confidence bait section.
Ha, and you thought I was going to tell you what that was.
I couldn’t end this post without adding the gorgeous sunset we got to see from the river.
- Pickerel Fishing French Lake With Casey (thejoyofflyfishing.com)
- Top Water Bass Baits I Use: Stick Baits (thejoyofflyfishing.com)
- Evening Fishing With Casey on New Horton Lake (thejoyofflyfishing.com)
- Hello James, Up For A Bit of Smallmouth Fishing This Evening?? DUH!! (thejoyofflyfishing.com)