2nd trip to the Gorge this year

Discussion in 'Warm Water Species' started by Shawn West, May 12, 2014.

  1. Shawn West

    Shawn West Active Member

    Oct 28, 2010
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    The winds have not been very nice to me this past month. Sunday was the first time the winds were to be mild in the Gorge. My wife was more than happy to celebrate Mothers Day a day early so I could get some time on the water. Have I ever mentioned I have a fantastic wife? Well I do!!

    I managed to get on the water just after 11. The water had a slight chop and the surface temperature was 58 degrees. I started off fishing a Clouser. After 30 minutes of no action, I switched to a Simiseal Leech. I managed to catch 2 dinks on back to back casts. Things slowed down for about 20 minutes. I switched to a Diamond Hair Minnow. I managed to catch a 2 pound fish on the first cast. After a slight lull, I managed to figure out what the fish wanted. I started fishing the minnow as fast as I possibly could without using the 2 handed method. I was hooking fish about every 5 casts. Most of the fish were in the 8" -10" range, but every once in a while I would land a 2 pounder. I eventually lost the eyes on my pattern, and the bite went cold. Unfortunately for me, this was the only baitfish pattern I had on me. I switched to an all white artic fox bullet head streamer. I managed to catch a few more fish before I decided to try some new water. I made a couple of observations while fishing this lake. I saw a LOT of bass in this lake. The weeds are starting to grow on and around the rocks. That is early for this lake. None of the bass I caught showed any indication of spawning. I did see a few pairing up, but the tails were clean and not beat up. I also noticed a lack of larger bass. If my history on this lake is any indicator, I should have caught a few 18"+ bass by now. Maybe I am losing my touch.

    I decided to try fishing the Columbia. My first cast brought the largest fish of the day to hand. It was a 2.5 pound smallie. This bass came out of the water four different times. That was a lot of fun.

    There is a cove on the Columbia side of the first lake I fished. I have wanted to explore that cove for almost four years, but I will not cross the train tracks to get there. I decided to oar my way upriver to check out the cove. The first 1/4 mile went pretty smooth. The last 1/8 mile was work. I was only gaining about 6" with every stroke. I almost gave up a couple of times, but I figured why waste the effort I had already made. I made it to the cove and took a 15 minute break. When I started fishing again, the fish rewarded me for my efforts. I caught a handful of fish, and decided to head back for the launch. I let the current take me back to the launch while I fished with a leech. There were a few areas that had back eddies. Every one of them held smallies. I called it a day around 7.

    I would like to explore the on the Columbia some more, but I will NOT oar my way there again. That is just too much work for this middle aged fat guy. I hope my buddy gets his 14' boat going soon. Fishing aside, it was a fantastic day. The sun was shining and the wind was not howling. It does not get much better than that in the Gorge.

    I also managed to catch a crappie at the lake. That is my first on that specific body of water. I hope to make it out a couple more times before the end of the month. If I am lucky, I will get to take some friends along too.


    GAT, triploidjunkie, McNasty and 4 others like this.
  2. triploidjunkie

    triploidjunkie Active Member

    Feb 15, 2010
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    Grand Coulee, WA
    I stayed at Biggs Junction for around six months working construction. The Smallmouth fishing in The Gorge is pretty freaking awesome, from my experiences. The best day I had was fishing from shore with a sink tip near the base John Day dam. I caught so many 2-4 pound smallies it was ridiculous! I was completely surrounded by salmon fishermen, who gave me weird sideways looks everytime I got a good bass!