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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Sorry this report is late but better late then never. Sidekick and I went last Sunday after seeing you all at the meeting. We where thinking of not going but after the meeting it got out blood pumping to go.
We launched in Sandy Creek and caught our bait right there at the ramp. We dove around looking for a place out of the wind and holding bait. Well I am here to tell you, that is are hard task. We ended up coming down to the bridges and started fishing. Before we got all the lines out we had a strike, as we where bringing him in another line went off, then another, then another. It got real crazy! At the end of it all we had 5 stripers flopping around in the bottom of the boat. We performed CPR (catch, picture and release). That is a Budman saying. After we got all of our lines reloaded we seen the birds and headed that way. All the chasers where fishing all over the birds. Before we got there the bird had moved on, so did all the chasers. But guess what, the fish still where there. We ran right over the top of them and here we go again, this time it was four stripers flopping around in the bottom of the boat. Once again we did CPR and reloaded. This happened two more times before the wind got BAD.
We decided to try anchoring up and do some balloon fishing. Before we could get all the line out we had a fish on. We caught a fish until we had gone through 70 or 80 baits. We had the best day ever in 15 years of fishing at Kerr with 30 fish and 3 keepers. All where released except for 2 for the table. What a day.
I don’t know if is because of the rule changes or the efforts from the club but there sure seems to be more stripers than there was just a few years back.

What a day.
Crawdad
 

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. . . . We decided to try anchoring up and do some balloon fishing. Before we could get all the line out we had a fish on. We caught a fish until we had gone through 70 or 80 baits. . . . .
What a day.
Crawdad
Hi Crawdad1,

I'm really new to fishing and more so with terminology. I've learned a lot in just a few months, but ballon fishing is a term I learned on the Gulf fishing for cobia. Is it just floating the bait down wind with a large float, or something quite different?

We went out with Ramrod on Monday and found much the same as you. After the glitter boats raced off to find the birds, the stripers were still there. Not necessarily active, but there!

I'm still trying to get my boat modified for fishing, a slow process in this cold. Might have my trolling motor operational in a few days. Still learning how to use the 15 year old Humming Bird and need more than the Bait Spa in a 5 gallon bucket. Well, my success with a cast net isn't memorable and I stuck with bass minnows. What cast net brand do you recommend? Or is one as good as another IF the technique is right?

The meeting was really informative and I also enjoyed the presentations. Unfortunately, I had to leave early because I forgot my meds . . .

Hopefully the stripers will stick around until I get all the techniques learned.

Thanks for your report,

Regards, Joy T Brew
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Joy,
Balloon fishing is just a way to get the bait away from the boat when you are anchored down in the wind. We normally just free line off the back 20 to 40 feet out and then blow up a balloon to the size of a softball and tie it on. If you get a big fish it will pull it under and pop the balloon. Even if it does not pop it is neat to see the balloon shot across the water like in the movie jaws.
As far as your question about the next, I use the same net that LLB was talking about. The Calusa net made down in Florida. I like that net for two reasons. One is that it is made with “pie” shaped panels instead of one big piece of net. I believe that this makes the net open up easer. The second reason is that the weight per foot of sinkers on the net makes it sink a little faster. The bad thing is because of the extra weight it will work you out more. There are many good nets out there and it is an investment to buy one. I throw an 8-foot net and that seams to fork great for me. Everyone likes their own thing. You will just have to figure out want size works for you. I would not recommend getting a 10-foot net until you master one a little smaller.
Catching bait is all part of the experience. It is rewarding as you build your skills and are able to get you bait every time you go out. Don’t give up! Keep trying and you will get the hang of it. Practice in the back yard, it helps.
One last thing about nets would be that every now and then when your net gets stiff you can buy the cheapest fabric softener that you can and put about 2 cups in a bucket with you net for about 12 to 24 hours. Rinse it out good and it will be like new. Believe me it works great! We have had the same net for about 8 years. As long as you take the time to maintain it you will get many years of use.
We ran a Hummingbird depth finder for many years. If it has the “fish ID” fetcher I would turn that off and turn up the sensitivity. As you catch some fish you will learn what the bait looks like and what the stripers look like.

Good luck- hope this helps some
Crawdad
 

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Very easy cast net method

Howdy JTB,

Here is an instructional video I made last spring. It is my personal method of mayhem.
I posted 2 methods on the same day, mine, and Cuban style. Cuban style has 7000 views, and my "Old School" method has over 50,000+ views. (I guess it is pretty popular) I think Jaybee uses it now.

YouTube - Cast net instructions /Old School Method/Team Old School

This casting the net on Menhaden from a moving boat.
YouTube - Cast net Menhaden / Bluefishing/Team Old School

As far as net brand,
I had a program deal from Calusa where I got nets at half price. They are great nets, but there is NO or VERY little difference between a Calusa ($300.), and a West Coast ($150.). They are both made the same way, with the same weight. The only exception, is that the West Coast uses plastic coated steel weights instead of lead. However, I have a 12 foot West Coast ballyhoo net that still uses lead.

I also soak the net in fabric softener for a day or two, rinse and hang, but all the fabric softener in the world won't help a Bett's net :nono: I don't recommend one unless that's all you can afford. The material is very cheap, it is brittle, and stiff. When you take it out, it "SPRINGS-OUT", and becomes very un-manageable. The West Coast, and Calusa lays tight in your hand, like a thin smooth curtain.

Good Luck,
Mike Smedley
Old School:cool2:
 
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