Kayak report from Hopedale for 9-30-18
Wind: 5 mph from E early, 10-15 mph E/NE later, almost still after 4 pm
Tide: high was 6 a.m., low at 3:45 p.m., range 1.5’, wind held some of the tide up and it did not drop as much as forecast.
Water Level: High, in the shore grass
Water Temperature: ~ 82 F
Water Clarity: visibility about 1.5 feet
Water salinity: fresh
Temperature: ~ 75-85 F
Moon: near half, waning
Solunar period: major periods @ 6 a.m., and 6 pm, minor @ 1 p.m.
Time on the water: slid the Hobie Outback kayak in at 7:15 a.m., driving in at 6 p.m.
Water covered: ~ 7 miles
Other fishers: solo trip
Game Plan: find reds and specks
Gear: #8 fly rod, 6’ of #20 lb leader/tippet, #8 weight fly rod with #12 lb.
Lure: chartreuse Waldner spoon fly, Rainy’s bubble head popper (burnt orange) with chartreuse/white micro clouser tied a foot below.
I pedaled out to the area where I wanted to fish and in route I got a nice 14” speck and a good-sized gafftopsail catfish by trolling.
I headed down a little bayou to a big pond and saw something large moving in the water. It was a pair of dolphin, one large and the other looked like it was half the size of its friend. The young one jumped completely out of the water. The pair was having fun with the ladyfish and small speckled trout.
After the dolphins passed I continued on down the bayou and saw a 2-3 unidentified fish showing some fins. I cast to them and immediately hooked up on the popper, fought the fish a bit, and then it came loose. Gar maybe?
At the mouth of the big pond there was trout action. I cast the popper/clouser combo and got several good strikes but no hook up. The trout were small and preferred the popper. I finally got one into the kayak – it was 12.5”. I had several hits on the popper, but failed to catch any more here. Then the bite just shut down.
I went over to a spot that drains into the pond. This spot is always good for a fish or two and today it produced an 18” redfish. I went up into the little bayou and cast into some little shrimp that were leaping for their lives. A small bass hit the popper and when I got it in there was a redear sunfish on the dropper too. A double! I got another small bass on the popper as I went back into the pond.
I fished around the shoreline of the entire pond, went up some drains, and managed to get two undersized redfish and a 20”er on the spoon fly. The overcast sky with high and dirty water made it hard to spot fish. The fish could push up into the flooded weeds along the bank and it was impossible to get a cast in to them.
On the way out of the pond I saw a little disturbance on the surface of a drain. Looked like it could be redfish, so I moved in and made a 30’ cast that went right into his living room. The second twitch of the spoon fly got the bite and I strip set as best as I could and the fish charged right at me. I picked up the slack line as it ran under the kayak and luckily the hook stayed put and the line went taught again. It went into open water and made some nice runs before coming to the net. It went about 6 lbs. on the Boga grip and was about 25” on the paddle ruler. I got another small redfish as I flipped the spoon fly into the weeds along the canal. The water along the banks of the canal had cleaned up nicely on the ride in. I saw several redfish hiding in the weeds there.