I'm at work fool! I can't write a dissertation like you will I'm sure but the highlights are...
I was quite a bit younger...not sure how old exactly. I was all by myself fishing at the CG station near my home..right on the point with the stationary dock and BAM my life was forever changed! It was only a 7lb Striper, but I'd never felt anything like it..I was ruined. Now 10 or more years later and thousands of dollars spent, I'm still glad I landed that fish! I've been fortunate to be able to share that feeling I had that long ago with others and I will continue to do so as long as I'm able to. It's hard to beat the friendships and memories gained through fishing! It's a lifelong sport that gives and teaches us more than we'll probably ever know!
I was in my backyard in 1999 pitching a bucktail early one morning (before daylight) and hooked up with about a 6 pound fish. Wasn't overly excited because right after I released it I stepped on a peice of lumber that floated up on the beach that happened to have a big nail in it that found my foot!!!
Frisco pier around about 97-98'! Probably my best day fishing ever! Thanksgiving week! Spent all night on the pier with whole spot and croakers fished on a large Carolina rig! With no bites! Had to go back to the end for a drink or something at around 4 am! A guy was tossing a rattle trap to the bait light nearest the surf catching gator trout! 22-25" no babies! Mean while I still have a rod tied off to end of pier right! I run back to the hotel across the street and grab me a rattle trap! Catch my limit of trout and the guy left with his limit! Something come into that light crashing the top of the water and didn't want a thing to do with that slow rattle trap! We pushing daylight now, 6:15am and I tie on a glow in the dark gotcha (where I got my screen name) and pulled up 6 stripes in the 5-8lb range! Me the only soul out there! Had to throw them all back because they was under the 28"-30" limit at the time! I then go back to the end and my rod tied off is broke in half, with a 27 3/4" puppy hooked up(slot then was 28-40 I believe)! Pier house opened as I brought that fish to my bucket filled with gators and 2 stripers laying on the deck that hasn't been there 15 min! The person running the pier was in aw that a kid 14-15 years old out there fishing by himself all night come back with a mess of fish like that! A 14-15 y/o ain't worried about a size limit or anything like that! I was just ready to show grandpa what he missed! Really goes to show ya what family and the fishing community is all about! May be a salty one but it still had stripes(seeing stripes )!
4 hours of chaos! Trout limit was 8or so landed 12-15 , 6 stripers and a keeper puppy drum! 10-12 lb line on a bass rod and had to hand line every single fish! The drum was landed on a 10' broke surf rod w 20lb line! Maybe not the best day but the most rememberable day of fishing! You will never forget the first! And that day was a first of two species! Striper and drum!
Yes trout will flat wear the chrome off a rattle trap!
First laker! My grandpa got a brand new bay liner Capri in 98' and we fished sml 5-6 times a year and never put the first striper in it together(he always wanted to fish the dam and never learned movements)! Here about 4 years ago now I found this(the old) board! And learned a few live bait tricks and finally put one in the boat! I've got my grandpa to go one time since then, and he got to feel one but never got to see it! . Back to the fish! I got a set of water Buggz and had rigged with 1/4oz weight! A Peanut from the millions of them that was there! Fish was caught off the rip rap in Striper Landing at marker 10 of gills creek in August of that year!
I think my 1st stripers actually came when I kid under 10 years old fishing with my Granddad in the Perquimans River & Albermare Sound in NE North Carolina out of his 16' green fiberglass boat with tiller-steer outboard - they call them Rockfish out there and I vaguely remember talk of catching those when we were out in the summer fishing dual bottom rigs with shrimp - definitely "schoolie size" though. I need to see if my Mom has any pics from those days tucked away.
My 1st lake striper came the summer of 2009 on Smith Mountain. A friend at work recommended SML as a great place for a family vacation so we rented a house on a cool 2nd week of July up in Witcher creek and part-way though the week I decided to try and hook up with a guide and chase these stripers I'd heard about... called around to guides randomly as I found them on the internet and most were already booked up, but ended up connecting with Capt. Dale Wilson and Matt and I went out with him and we jigged up 3 or 4 stripers in the 6-8 lb range in the back of Hickory Creek I believe. Took that little bit of learned knowledge (casting jigs/flukes, counting down & retreiving) and went back out to the State Park S-curves the next day on the rental pontoon with no electronics and we somehow managed to hook into a few more fish.
Matt with his 1st ever striper caught & landed on his own
The following day I headed out before daybreak to the same spot with no luck - about 10 AM I was ready to call it quits when I stopped in the cove next to the Franklin County Park for a few more cast..... all of a sudden the 5'6" bass rod with a baitcaster and 12 lb test I was using doubled over and I had the biggest fight I'd had before on my hands - I knew there were all kinds of trees below me but somehow I finally got the fish to the boat - was the biggest fish I'd caught, freshwater or salt. 13 lbs (well, on my cheapo scales - not so sure about that weight now). That fish even had a tag which eventually netted me $50 I didn't know then what I know now regarding conservation of the fishery and that fish came home for supper - though given it was July and I fought it for quite a while on light tackle it was probably was better off harvested than released.
That fish turned out to be VERY expensive and was the start of a major addiction that had led to a lot of good times, good friends and good memories.
I don't remember the first... I grew up spending summers on the Edisto river in SC. From the time I was 10 or so, my daily routine in the summer was to dig some worms or get some crickets, then catch a bunch of redbreast brim. Then I'd use the redbreasts as live and cut bait for stripers (we called them rockfish), catfish, gar and mudfish (aka bowfin).
When the saltwater stripers were running a few 40lbers would be caught every summer (my best was a 24), but there were 10-15lb class fish around all summer and I'd rarely get skunked.
Stripers were fun, but big mudfish were my favorite... They'd tailwalk and do acrobatics that put any LMB to shame.
My 1st striper trip was in April 1974, I traded a spring gobbler hunt for striper trip on SML. Didn't get any stripers but I caught a nice muskie. Heard stories about catching them at night in the lower end of the lake, so one Fri.nite we put in at Saunders marina and headed across the lake right before dark. Casting spoon bill rebels on to points all was quite until around 10:00 PM. Then we started hearing what sounded like bowling balls being dropped in the water. Didn't take long before we started hooking up on the fish, never had caught anything like that before. My life was ruined, every Fri and Sat nite was spent on the lake fishing and learning to catch stripers. This is the truth, we thought they stocked them 7-8lbs. apiece. Never caught any smaller than that size. Went 2-3 years doing that, didn't know anything other than night fishing. Finally a friend told us about day time stripers being caught around Beaver Dam and further on up the lake. That's when we got into the big boys. Man, seems like it was yesterday. Fishing is good now, but the days of the casting into a school on top and hooking up on a fish that could weigh 30 pounds or more are gone. Wish you younger guys could have seen the lake in it's prime. Probably some of the older guys on here have seen or have pictures of limits of fish averaging over 20 pounds each. Know a guy that used to guide, one of his favorite sayings was "We are catching a thousand pounds a week". Enough rambling.
Post by Shadslinger on Dec 18, 2013 20:25:09 GMT -5
I was fortunate enough to have a Dad who was one of the best fisherman on Leesville in the 80s and 90s when it came to stripers. I can remember nights out fishing when I was very young and falling asleep and waking up to monster stripers being caught. My Dad lived for striper fishing. He worked 2nd shift and when he was not working or sleeping he was fishing.
I cant remember how many citations he caught before he got out of it but it was many. I think this picture is alittle less than half of them.
He also loved helping folks out fishing and put alot of people on their first stripers. This is a picture I have of a guys first striper that my Dad took fishing.
With all that being said I was so young I don't remember my first really. I just know it was caught on a snoopy rod my Dad had rigged up with a alewife for me. I have grew up and took on that same love for striper fishing and the memories that come along with it. I have made some awesome friends through fishing and have had some of the best times of my life on the water enjoying the lake and fishing. Heres a few first stripers that I had the privilege to help out with.
My Daughter Randi
Her first flathead
Mother in Law (she's a good one, not the kind you want to accidentally push overboard)
I look forward to many more years of fishing and many more memories to come.
"Its hard to be honest in a world that's headed for hell"
Caught my first striper march, 1980 in indian creek. A friend, who had been fishing the lake since it opened, asked me if I wanted to go striper fishing. Grew up fishing creeks and rivers for bass @ catfish, and I had never seen a striper much less catch one. He had a camper at fishermans cove marinia which was beside halesford bridge. When we got there we went into the marinia and I could not believe the size of the fish hanging on the walls in there. I think my exact words to him were, there is no way there are fish like that in this lake, he just smiled. He had me on the dock all evening, praticing to cast a baitcaster reel. After 3 or 4 cut me jobs and a spool of line, I was good to go. Next morning we headed to indian creek. Was amazed at how many small minnow looking fish (never heard of a threadfin before either) were dead and floating on top of the water. He gave me a bucktail with a worm trailer to tie on and fish with. I was about as green as you come to fishing like that. After prolly 10 cast, I told him to give me something else to tie on because about every cast the bluegills were pecking at the worm trailer. He laughed and said that it was prolly a 20 lb. striper and next time I feel it to set the hook. Hey, I told ya I was young and dumb. Couple cast later, peck-peck, set the hook. Never felt anything like that in my life. We caught 8 that morning. Had him stop at a boat dealer on the way home and I bought a boat....been hooked and broke ever since.
I was in my early 20's and the guy that got me started was in his 50's. Continued fishing with him prolly 10 years until he passed. Best fisherman I've ever seen. He taught me alot.....everytime I go into indian creek I think about him and glance over at the spot I caught my first one....
I've come a long way since that first one...don't fish as much as much as I used to, or think anyone was more hooked than me. Tried to hit the lake every other weekend for prolly 15 years........ but I still do catch one...every know and then. ......you young bucks enjoy every minute of it. Regardless of what you think, your priorities do change when you get older.....
Last Edit: Dec 19, 2013 14:46:28 GMT -5 by Deleted
I can't say when I caught my first striper, but it would have been sometime in mid to late 70s and would have been on The Holston River somewhere just below the John Sevier steam plant in Rogersville Tennessee. Back then, every year early in the spring my dad and his fishing buddies would drop everything and head that way when they heard the stripers had made their way up the river to the steam plant. They fished for them with bucktails, big inline spinners with bucktail skirts, minnows, and redfins. I was just a kid and can't say I ever caught but a few small stripers. Mostly from where I was fishing from on the bank I would catch white bass, an occasional gar, and get in trouble for wasting the shiners catching some of the biggest sunfish you ever saw. I don't have many pictures from back then, but here are a couple. The man on the left with the blue hat, bushy hair, mustache is my dad. He died in 1983 when I was 18.
Not sure the year, but was in the early 90's. Was "green fishing" in a tourney, working a spinner bait around some stumps near Benard's. Rod about flew out of my hands when a 8 ponder slammed the spinner. Thought I had won the big fish and the total weight for the day, till I saw stripes. Didn't help my weight for the day, but sure turned my head. I'll say this, sold my sparkly, jon, and camper, and went out and got a CC and never looked back pretty much.