Late this week WayneD sent an invite my way to spend another night chasing Aussie Bass. The BOM had been predicting some potentially heavy falls of rain, so I was keen to head out as I anticipated that the local rivers and creeks would be flowing strong and brown over the next week and a bit. So on Friday the 13th I headed to a system that was a fair distance for me but it did have great potential especially with the humidity and temperature really high and the wind being almost non-existent.
We hit the water at 7:30 and the first thing I noticed was that the water level was much higher than my visit at the start of the season. We fished the launch pool for absolutely no touch, which although not unusual, I had been hopeful we might find a couple of takers with the favourable conditions. It wasn’t until we moved to the second pool that I finally had a hit, but it was very soft and the bottom of this pool was also very quiet. To be honest I was just robotically casting when a bass monstered my lure in the quiet of the night which made me jump out of my seat and say a few choice words. This bass fought hard and eventually I netted a good bass of 39cmFL on my Jackall Pompadour Micro.
A few casts later I was smashed again and had netted another bass but this was a little smaller at 36cmFL. Within 5 minutes I had missed another 2 fish in the same 20m of bank and then it went very quiet again.
Wayne was the first to arrive at the top of the pool, which is a favourite of mine, and often holds some good numbers of fish. It wasn’t long until there was a “boof” in the night and a quick query told me Wayne was onto his first bass. When I paddled over to get a quick photo and measure, we found it very hard to size up as the fish was missing almost all of its’ caudal fin. It was however a good fish and somewhere in the late thirties.
Fishing at the top of the pool it wasn’t long before I had a good hit and pulled the hooks very early in the fight. I then moved a little further up and a good bass smashed my lure and my reactive strike sent the lure flying back towards me. The consecutive cast was also belted and finally I connected to a big bass that stripped braid off my reel in spurts before the hooks pulled again and I was devastated. I was using 15lb, and had the drag set a little high but the fish had still managed to peel line before dropping the lure. I then missed another smaller bass on consecutive casts and I was a little frustrated as I had missed 6 fish of eight.
We continued to the next pool which was very shallow, and it was Wayne’s turn to drop a good bass. The cast was up into a very skinny run at the top of the pool that lacked any depth at all and a bass that must have been partially out of the water hit Wayne’s lure hard. It then beached itself on a gravel bank and flopped around so much it threw the trebles and another good bass was lost.
We continued upstream and missed three more bass before deciding to head downstream and back to the car. The downstream run was just as unlucky as I missed another two bass and Wayne managed another average bass and lost s couple as well. So by the end of the night I was 2 from 13 and Wayne was 2 from 7 which was a very poor conversion rate. It was a great night but it could have been epic if even half our missed hits had remained connected. Maybe the horror conversion rate had something to do with it being Friday the 13th. Now with the rain coming down as I write this I am very glad I managed to head out before the rivers rise and turn to coffee.