Night Stalking with WayneD
After a cracking session in one of my local rivers I was keen to give it another crack during the night and so I teamed up with WayneD who was local to the area. After a considerable portage we were on the water and we were quite thankful for the consistent cloud cover as the moon was high and bright and any time the clouds parted the river would light up like a beacon in a prison yard.
My first capture was not a bass but instead it was a micro bat that had got caught in my line. For those who haven’t fished at night these little marsupials can be a real pain as they hit your line and you think it is a strike from a subtle bass. They hit the braid due to the line vibration imparted by crawling lures in particular and occasionally they hit the line and spiral around it getting a little tangled. It doesn’t take much to remove them but they do remain a bit passive and shocked after the ordeal and I usually sit them on my backpack before they feel ready to fly off.
My first bass hit was a cracker and came out of the launch pool which is unusable as it has relatively easy access and I think quite a few ban bashers fish it regularly. I do catch bass in there and sometimes they are huge but it is quite common for me to fish the pool with no action only for it to fire in the pool above. I missed the fish on the first and second cast where he hit multiple times and I was disappointed when he didn’t hook up because he was a good fish.
Heading to the next pool upstream I managed to miss a rat and then hook up and net another soon after. Moments later I was on again but this bass managed to to a great acrobatic act and launch itself out of the net before I could get a photo to capture the moment.
It then went quiet for a bit while Wayne and I targeted opposite banks. The bank I was fishing was quite open to the sun during the day but I knew it was popular with bass during the darker hours of the day. Wayne on the other hand was targeting a bank with significant structure and was missing a few fish and hooking a few small to average bass as well.
From experience I knew that the further we went up the pool that the size and consistency of hits would improve as the bass pushed up to the top of the pool waiting for food to come down from the running water above. Wayne then managed to miss another cracking bass that smashed his lure and then shied away and I managed to hook up on a high thirties fish which was my biggest for the night. Fifteen minutes later Wayne was onto a bass a little bigger and was soon netted and photographed before being released.
Reaching the top of the pool there were plenty of bass willing to play but only one managed to connect and it was only a rat. In the end I managed 3 fish from about nine hits which was frustrating but it was better than staying at home and watching television.