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Johnsfolly

October Creek Fishing

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I got out yesterday to fish one of my favorite creeks looking to catch a northern rock bass as well as the opportunity to enjoy a beautiful day on an Ozark stream. I have caught many of these fish in this stream in the past. I was looking forward to catching what has been an elusive fish for me this year as well as catching any number of different species. If not successful on the rock bass, hoping to catch  more than 100 fish on this trip. Not planning on targeting bass, but will catch what I can.

I started fishing right under the bridge and saw several larger bass in the mix. I started with a green pumpkin Ned rig and got bit quickly. The fish got unbutton just as quickly. On the next cast got bit again and set the hook harder this time and popped the leader. Switched to a 1/32 oz tube jig with a green pumpkin slider with chartreuse paddle tail and cast to a roving smallmouth. The bass quickly hit the bait and the line held. I landed my first fish of the day - just 99 more to go.

Smallmouth - Gen pumpkin slider (1) - Maries River - 09Oct17.JPG

I cast to a large bass and got bit again and again the line popped when I set the hook. This time right at the knot between the Nano-fil and the leader. Instead of just retying with a leader, I spooled on about 40-45 yards onto the reel so that the 8 lb line would be on the reel as I caught more fish. Under the bridge I caught a few green sunfish and another smallmouth then I moved upstream to get after a few more fish.

In this stream a great bas will be over 14" with 17-18" being some of the largest that you can expect. These are chunky fish with thick shoulders. I had some more success fishing rocky bottoms and deeper water, but kept catching green sunfish. In the next deep hole saw a few larger smallmouth and had success with a fluke. I also had a couple of large fish hit and get off. I switched to a 1/8 oz PBJ Ned rig and landed this chunky 10" smallmouth at the head of the pool, loved the red eyes on this one!

Smallmouth - PBJ Ned - Maries River - 09Oct17.JPG

By this time I had caught over 20 fish, but no rock bass. I had a dozen red worms in case I got into some interesting microfising opportunities. With the warm weather the worms were not fairing well. So I switched to fish live bait while there was still some "life" left in my baits. The first fish was and unusual one for this stream, a redear sunfish. I have never seen one in this stream before. The worms landed lots of sunfish including this fuzzy longear sunfish (still one of the most attractive Ozark fish that you can catch on a variety of baits).

Longear sunfish - Maries - 09Oct17.JPG

I never switched to my small hooks on this trip. I got back into rock bass waters and put back on the green/chartreuse slider. More smallmouth, a few largemouth, and lots of green and longear sunfish. Every rock pile, deep holes with wood and/or rock held fish. Still no rock bass.

Finally I got into a long deep pool with a large tree lined up against on bank in the deeper water. I saw a pod of largemouth that ranged from 10" to a three that were close to 18-20" in length. I had a special lure in my bag of tricks, a Billethead (BH) special topwater bait.

Marty Horn Special.JPG

I love topwater fishing in this stream, particularly in the summer. I had tried this on the last deep hole, but just couldn't get a hang of getting a hook set with the single hook. So trying again with I was getting lots of blowups in this long hole. I finally got the right time between the blow-up, to the tug, and then the hook set. This was a nice thick 13-14" largemouth. I know that I was a green bass and not a hybrid, but I was pretty proud catching this fish with the BH special:D!

Largemouth 12+ inches (1) - MH special - Maries - 09Oct17.JPG

The bass weren't the only chunky fish that I caught. This was the largest bluegill that I have ever caught in this creek. Also on the green/chartreuse slider.

Bluegill sunfish - Maries - 09Oct17.JPG

It was getting late in the day So I kept on the slider for the rest of the day. I hit a long hole that had three separate rock piles and fished each of them as hard as I could. Again lots of green sunfish. I saw a couple of larger smallmouth and landed three on the sliders as well as this 13" smallie which was my largest of the day.

Smallmouth - Green pumpkin slider (2) - Maries River - 09Oct17.JPG

I fished until it got dark and ended the day in a hole that I caught several rock bass on a Ned rig last summer. I caught fish after fish, with lots of longear and green sunfish and a hornyhead chub, but not a single rock bass.

I fished for 6 and a half hours. I caught 40 green sunfish,  26 longear sunfish, 12 bluegill, a redear sunfish, a hornyhead chub, seven largemouth (two that were 12-13" and lost two larger ones), and 17 smallmouth bass (four over 12") for 104 fish on the day. Not only did I have a great day fishing, I got to experience a beautiful day on the stream with views like these.

Maries River (1) - 09Oct17.JPG

Maries River (2) - 09Oct17.JPG

 

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16 minutes ago, BilletHead said:

             Neat John!   

Nice trip. Glad the BilletHead fry worked :) .  Pretty stream,

  BilletHead

Marty -thanks for sending it. It was a great surprise. I just wished that I had been able to try out the gar flies on this trip. Maybe soon!

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