Thursday, August 16, 2012

When Life Gets in the way of Fishing - Mutant Bass & Crazy Deer

August has been a tough month for me.  First, my car got hit and I have been stuck in a rental without a roof rack.  That means no carrying kayaks.  That means it is either wade trips, boat trips, or overtime at the office.  It has been mostly overtime, but I did get a couple short trips in last week.  One was a trip down near Raleigh that resulted in about 25 bass between two of us - the biggest going maybe 2-2.5 lbs.  Then Mary May and I decided to join our friends Wendy and Gary and enjoy some of their fancy mechanical horsepower on Kerr Lake.  In the short time we got on the water between storms, we managed only two small cats....bummer.

Tomorrow I am supposed to get my Escape back (cross your fingers)!  That timing would be perfect since the NCKFA Smallmouth Slam takes place on Saturday.  While I am a big fan of the NCKFA and smallies, I am not a huge fan of fishing extremely muddy rivers.  Enter the venue for the event, the mighty Yadkin.  Do fish eat in muddy water? Sure they do, but something about it just isn't as much fun.  So I am on the fence about that one and will be keeping an eye on the river levels and local forecasts until Saturday.  If I don't end up on the Yadkin, I think a local trip will be at the top of the agenda!

Now for a couple total random asides.  First, I have never been a fan of online tournaments.  The list of things I dislike about them is long, but it was well summed up by my friend Pat Kellner in a recent email.  His comment was, "To me, it doesn't show who is the best angler that day, just who fishes the best water."  I think that pretty much hit the nail on the head.  Maybe I will change my mind one day, but no time soon.

Second, in order to add some picture pizzaz to this post I wanted to throw in a couple pictures I stumbled upon while scrolling through my photos.  This was a mutant bass I caught on Belews Lake last fall.'s a weird place

                                                    One heck of a kink - any ideas how it might have formed?

  The weirdo was actually a nice, fat, thick fish, but with the huge kink in his tail, he barely went 15".  I am not sure how fish grow like that, but it was kind of neat to see.  That same day, we had this gal follow us. 

Bambi's mom made a swim for it

She watched us from the bank for about 100 yards and at times even walked out on the docks.  She would trail a short distance behind us and other times ahead, but he never got too far away.  After about 30 minutes we decided to troll across a bay (about 60-70 yards) and fish another row of docks.  Suddenly, Bill yelled, "Holy Crap" and points behind me.  There, not more than 10 feet from the motor, is the deer.  I shot a quick video and snapped a few photos as she swam by.  Thankfully, the doe, which was radio collared, made it to shore and eventually wandered away from us.  This made us extremely happy when it came time to make a big move.  The last thing we wanted was for her to follow us again and try to make a swim that she didn't have the energy for.  It was a wacky day on Belews, but we did end up with a nice bag of fish by about maybe she was our goodluck charm!
She was friendly...and maybe our long, lost goodluck charm

I had seen plenty of deer and other critters on the river, but she definitely took it to a new level.  Anyone else seen some weird things out there?  Until next time, tight lines!


  1. We had a deer do that at kerr Lake once. My buddy almost hit it with his boat. Only the head was sticking up and it almost looked like a small log sticking up out of the water. Luckily he saw it because my eyes were looking for busting fish.

    1. Wow - hitting a deer running full throttle across the lake would be scary! I have seen some in some crazy places and had a few close calls. The one I think about most happened when I was younger and riding my bike. A deer came out of the woods and I had to slam on my breaks not to hit her. Had she hit me, it could have been very ugly.

  2. Seen bass kinked like that, birth defect or virus that deforms them younger but didn't seem to stop her from eating did it?

    1. Nope - gotta love that inherent fish instinct to want to feed. A large sausage and garlic NY style pizza has the same effect on me.

  3. I was shock with what I saw on the lake, thought something creepy was swimming around. Saw the motor of your boat, is it from some zodiac used boats? Got yourself a great deal if it is.

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