Giant Smallmouth Bass of Early Spring

welcome everybody to the new flag Fisher
I’m your host Colin McEwen in today’sshow we’re gonna be fly fishing for big
small look best I’m talking four fivesix maybe even seven pounds smallmouth
bass on a flyit’s pre-spawn and the fish are gonna be
just coming into the shallows and watertemperatures 49 to 50 degrees and you
got to use special techniques specialflies we’re going to be going over all
these things and having a lot of fun Iknow you’re gonna enjoy the show stay
with uslocated in the beautiful Algoma region
of Northern Ontario Birch Lake Resort issituated just 10 minutes from meson just
off the trans-canada highway this isless than two hours from the US border
and su st. Marie Don Sanju is the ownerand operator of birch Lake Resort the
cottages sleep four comfortably and onlycost $500 for a week’s rental I love it
here because I can come with my friendsour boat and bring our own food which
results in a very affordable fishingtrip for those that are looking for a
great drive to location where you caneasily catch trophy size bass this is it
big fish well well well big fishbeautiful flora Algoma has some truly
spectacular fishing locations and thisis one of themwhen you come fishing in Northern
Ontario in mid-may is usually cool butnot super cold this year was a
particularly late I so thanks tounseasonally low air temperatures it was
so coldwe observed snow on some sheltered hills
this is not the norm in fact it’s quiteunbelievable
because of this the water temperaturesvaried from high 40s to low 50s the bass
of these temperatures are moving slowtheir metabolism is still not fully
active they are feeding but will notaggressively chase down food that is why
our presentations have to be slow andusually near the bottom these pre-spawn
bass are looking to eat but not chasecrayfishinsect larvae and baitfish like smelt
are all on the menu if you can get sunnyconditions this is ideal as a two to
three degree water difference in theshallows from reflective solar energy
can really make a difference however thekey to fishing at this time of the year
whether using a spinning outfit or flyrod used to retrieve slowly and near the
bottom so what I’m doing using itintermediate line six weight rod cone
headed fly and we’re using cone hasexclusively right now make sure that the
fly is getting down and I’m near thebottom which means I’m snagging a lot
because there’s lots of fallen timbersyou can see around us but these bass
they’re not willing to chase a lot soI’m using relatively short little pulses
like this and to them it’s either it’slooking like a crayfish something like a
leech or it’s something like some sortof minnow some sort of bait fish either
way it works key isoh just oh that’s nice fish
that’s a nice small whoa right at theboat well I got some taste bass there we
go oh look at the size of that bass lookat the size of that small one that’s a
nice way start and I just lost anotherfish oh yeah look at you count up
crayfish you got a crayfish re whichgiven the water temperatures is pretty
incredible look at that small ladies andgentlemen that’s what we’re looking for
here today beautiful small most likethat these are pre spawn fish so they
will be getting ready to spawn Bobby inabout two three weeks but they’ve got
the feed bag on after a long winter whenwe get them in the water here alive he’s
already ready to go there’s cold waterdoesn’t take long to revive him and what
I’m using let’s just fly right here andit’s basically a small pattern very
popular here in Northern Ontario it wasinvented by gentleman by the name of
Scott it’s called Scotty’s McFly BillSpicer and I have found this to be one
of the best producing smallmouth fliesup here in Northern Ontario that bit of
orange seems to make a difference andthe sparkle and of course the weighted
head and you give it twitches and jigsunderwater and just look perfectly best
so many smelt here that perfect lifeit’s good enough so what we’re doing is
we’ve got a point that comes out hereit’s about four feet there’s a bit of
structure and I just hooked a small offTerry just last one and what we’re gonna
do is use the wind instead of anchoringI’m going to do some drifts and just go
slow with our flies and he with his lureand just drift through this area a few
times since you’ve even pick up anotherfish because I think they’re roaming
around here on this flat looking forcrayfish I hooked a fish earlier and
when it was coming up it coughed up asmall little crayfish so maybe that’s
the technique we need to do give it atry
whoa so what we’ve done oh it feels goodTerry yeah man
all the size of this it’s a big fish andso what we do is we drop the anchor
because the wind was just blowing uswe’re trying to drift through and what
were we doing you said half a knot we’recoming through it’s just too fast 1/2
mile an hour okay so just too fast so at17 18 inches huh yeah it’s a nice pass
oh yeahsolid state I’m ready B 19 we’re gonna
head on that oh sweet that’s a sweet pigtots
you got somewhere to measure that on theside of the boat there thank you so what
we did again we knew there’s fish hereand I had to slow down my presentation
oh I’ll show you quickly while Terrygets the fish out of the net put on a
root beer woolly bugger bit of sparkleit’s got a cone head on it and I’ve just
been retrieving it real slow bounce init I’m snagging up a bit
but I’m getting fish oh sweet up justshort of 18 inches but look at nice
girth on that fish for this time of yeara beautiful fish yeah okay can you
release them for me there Terrythere are certain parts of Northern
Ontario where there is no closed bassseason in this part of Algoma they just
changed the rules and open it up as ayear-round fishery for small month many
anglers are concerned about the fishingfor bass especially when there are nests
protecting their youngpersonally I avoid fishing when they’re
on the nests if they’re still bass onthe nests when I do fish then I keep
away from them targeting the post spawnfemales which are in deeper water and
near drop-offsthis week we are fishing for the pre
spawn bass which are still at least twoto three weeks away from mating we will
do no harm catching these fish at thistime and in fact the cold water will
help ensure good revival and highsurvival rates this this rod that I’m
using is similar to a fly-fishing rodwith it being a cork handle and light
action medium action very sensitive andthe braid just allows you to feel every
little bit down on the bottom all I’mdoing and it’s casting into Shore we’re
in about five six feet of water so it’sprobably about four and a half to five
they wear a hat and just slowly twitchand lift and generally it’s hope there’s
a bite right there that lifting motionare the crayfishes when they’re trying
to flee a predator is how they propelthemselves backwards and 60 inch spurts
innovate no higher than two inches offthe groundso that’s what I’m trying to imitate any
size for that would Terry oh come onbuddy
they’re all nice in here Oh see hmmthat’s big fish this is the biggest bass
of my entire lifeokay bring it over this way go that my
friend is a very solid five or sixpounds of bass look at that oh all right
beautiful fish Hey well done first castmmm new spot so what we’ve done is we
move to a sand flat and this is whatyou’re looking for because they’re up
here in the flats because it’s a littlebit warmer waters a little bit warmer
there’s gonna be lots of insect activitythey’ll be baitfish they’ll be crayfish
and they’ll be things are looking forfish you’re not moving fast we’re
slowing down our retreat and we’re gonnaget lots of big ones one of the things
that I learned from the spin fishingworld that’s really important and you’ll
see me do it all the time especially wassmall with bass so put after I make my
cast I’ll put my rod tip down pull inand make sure I’m tight to that fly so
that as the fly drops a lot of the timesyou’re gonna have a pickup by bass this
is applicable to trout as well in anytype of still water like this you want
to keep tight to it as it drops a lot oftimes you feel a little little weight or
a tap and then you just give it a tuglike this and you’ll go tight to the
fish but a lot of timesanglers miss a fish that’s picked up the
fly as its descending in the watercolumn and they don’t even know it
happened they’ve missed theiropportunity to catch a good fish so keep
your line tight to the fly all the timeright after you castor was something grabbed it there so
switch to a baitfish pattern basicallyI’ve got about a 5-inch bait fish on
here I’m trying to see cuz a crayfishwasn’t working for me as well as it is
for Terry I just had a strike so I mightget beyond there we go nice buddy
this has got some shoulders as fish sosometimes you got oh that’s a big plate
that’s a big bass you see it there’slooks I go Wade that’s a bass that’s
bass there in that way it Terry yes myman that’s a big bass that’s absolutely
insane if that’s a bass yeah how’s thatboy great oh yeah
he’s not bringing the head up bring thehead up bring it scoop him stupid oh
look at he just coughed up something towhat he cough up I’m in Elena there you
go there’s your proofwhoo that is 6 pounds of bass oh come on
that’s that’s that’s seven seven and ahalf buddy
look at that ladies and gentlemen andthis is why if you think you have to go
pay a lot of money to go fishing inNorthern Ontario there’s proof you don’t
here’s a nice solid a little mark therebut that is 6 pounds of bass easy I’m
gonna let him go now survive I’m hereWow
are you ready to goyes congratulationsso we’re just repositioning we’re in a
Sandy Bay we’re in about four or fivefeet of water here Terry just had a big
fish follow his rebellion and bass go orstick bait and basically fish you’re out
in the deeper water right now it’s stillonly about ten thirty probably then we
come into the shallows as thetemperature goes up and they start
pushing baitfish in here but what we’regonna do is go out the deeper water and
cast in now that we’ve seen a bass weknow they’re here now we just got to go
to where we think they are and cast inand try and find them
fish on oh you hit it once and missed itI thought it was a blop oh it’s a big
fish big fish Jerry okay buddy I lovethe first fish of the day and he was out
in about six feet of water seven feet ofwater look at that look at the size of
that basswell nicely done brother how can you not
like this catching big smallmouth basslike this is beautiful look at that oh
that’s a big bass that’s a beautifulbass and it’s not the length because
he’s Fisher that would catch you at allso girthy 17 18 19 20 inches but look at
the it’s just a massive bass imagine howbig this bass will be by the end of the
summer that’s sweet a great way to starttoday and we finally got the conditions
we wanted which is Sun to warm up therock piles and the Sandy flats there he
goes boom that bottom or fish they’recoming hit the fish all right oh boy
that’s a oh he’s taking line buddyall right boil big fish right off the
point right thereokay so I’ll turn us around
you said this way yeah give me five thatis a big fish
that’s hold that up mm-hmmlook at that that’s a big bass that’s
what we were looking forwell done wow that’s definitely one of
my top three large Tomatoes smallmouthbass huh better goal there you goyoumy favorite rod setup is a six weight
fast action matched to a good qualityreel with multiple spools a floating
line is normally appropriate for 70% ofthe fishing conditions however at this
time of the year you need both anintermediate and full sinking lines as
well they’ll help you get your fly downdeeper in the water column which is
definitely necessary with these coldwater conditions crayfish and leeches
they’re a big part of smallest diet inmost places as the water warms crayfish
and leeches will start to move aroundmore this in turn means a smallmouth
will target them as an easy meal woolybuggers fish slow near the bottom can be
very deadly at this time of the yearone of the things when you’re using
these heavy headed flies is you gottaaccept the fact you’re gonna lose a few
flies because you’ve got to be rightnear the bottom these fish because the
water is so cold really not in heavyduty chase mode and I found going slower
is better I mean obviously I’m using aminnow pattern or smelt pattern right
now and I’m having to give it a certainamount of action but I’m really not
reppin in an end as you see we’re reallytight here to a rock face there’s very
deep water in here 27 feet and verysteep too when it’ll underwater but the
bass are cruising along the edge of thislooking for crayfish looking for insects
looking for minnows and we’ve alreadyhad a couple fish follow I just lost one
we can get the right drift we got thebreeze blowing us right here and we’re
drifting along the edge here and we’regetting a lot of hits you just got a
methodically work it over and try andget good boat positionoh yeah whoa
and that was right where you’d expect abass to be sitting in ambush right at
that point I like this guy myselfbeautiful fish look at that go boom
beautiful bass football beautiful passso pretty they are prettyso conditions changed as you can see son
saw but it’s got colder and the windcame out so I switched to a full sinking
line and to about 18 inch a piece ofheavy model put on my my big streamer
Terry yeahand just like you with your crayfish
going slowly just strips low and thisguy hit it right almost at the boat it’s
a good fish too it’s good fishanother feisty beauty this an a weight
rod I’m using and look at how he’smaking this thing Bend like how could
you not enjoy this it’s size as fastthere’s lots of good places to come in
Northern Ontario and you don’t have tofly in this is public waters drive – oh
wow I’ll call it look at that drive -for bass like that nice chunky I’d say
probably eighteen to nineteen inch fishlook how thick they are big fat slaps
wonderful fishaway goes in our next episode we return
to Birch Lake Resort only this time inSeptember to catch more trophy size
small month and even land a newprovincial record thanks for watching
see you soonhi I’m Tom rosenbauer hope you enjoyed
this video if you liked this and youwant to see more subscribe and you can
get all our weekly uploads

About the author