It happened three
years ago in the parking lot of a local Winnipeg tackle store. I was walking out with my purchase when I was
stopped in the parking lot. This does happen on fair occasion but I remember
this conversation like it happened yesterday. The fellows name was Joe Kostecki
and he hailed from Thunder Bay, Ontario. He recognized me from my days of doing
The Complete Angler television show and wanted to show me some lures he and his
son were making. Soon he was loading me up with custom tied jig flies from the
back of his pickup truck. “Don, he said,
if you get a chance please give these a try and if you do send me a picture of
any fish you might catch on them.” Fast forward to this past week and day
smallmouth fishing I won’t soon forget.
It was the first time I had tied on one of his jig flies, a little
purple ,white, yellow and brown combination. Only a 1/8 ounce in weight this
little beauty never hit the bottom on my first cast of the day, a smallmouth
bass had engulfed it on the drop. This was to be repeated all morning long as I
caught and released close to forty fish.
Now, I am not into numbers but on this
day we were having a little friendly competition with friend Jim Price who was
fishing in another boat. Hair jigs have become extremely popular for a variety
of fish over the last few years and few are made better than these. You can
check them out at www.mmjjjflies.com
Now you know
which lure I was using, let’s talk about fish location because it was very
specific. The smallmouth were schooled up in flush areas, places that necked
down between two section of the lake. They had some extended flats next to deep
water as well as rock and sand bottom. While we tried a variety of depths, we
found the active fish in three to five feet of water.
When we went deeper we
caught pike and walleye. After lunch, the wind went down and the sun came out,
making the bite a little tougher.
That is when I switched over to a drop shot
rig on which I hooked on a custom poured Berkley Finesse worm. This put a few bonus fish in the boat
including a massive walleye.
|Drop shot walleye|