Fished the James Feb 23 and Feb 24

Discussion in 'VIRGINIA RIVERS TALK' started by JPritch, Feb 25, 2008.

  1. JPritch

    JPritch New Member

    Messages:
    1,852
    State:
    Lynchburg, VA
    I hit the lower James solo this weekend and had a banner weekend by my standards. Bait was really easy. I let the net soak for 10 minutes and had over 20 cutters including two nice crappie. I threw back about half and kept 10 for the day. I then went to a deep hole and marked some bait balls and good quantities of arches along the bottom ahead of the hole in about 35ft of water on an incoming tide. The birds were also actively dive-bombing the area, so I thought, this will be a good spot. Got setup and ready to fish by about 11am. Almost right away the fish started biting. In a matter of just a few hours, I caught a 10, 30, 28, 27, 42, 14, 36, 24, 20 out of that hole. By early afternoon, the bite had slowed, so I went upriver to another spot and marked tons of fish from 20-30 ft. Sat there for an hour and not a bite. I was thinking to myself, well it was a good day, time to go to the hotel and eat and get some rest for tomorrow. I had a pole out with the entire gut section of a 1.75lb crappie, it was a good 6" wide piece of bait. Out of nowhere, WHAM, the first true freight-train hit of the day. Pole went from straight to doubled-over in the blink of an eye, and the fish was running sideways too! I had trouble getting the rod out of the holder, but when I did, the fight was on! He busted the surface about 20ft away from the boat like a bass would, and when I finally got him to the boat, he really went ape$hit and dove back down. This went on a couple more times and went I finally thought I had him wore out, I went for my net, but the dang thing was tangled in a pole I wasn't using. There was no way I was gonna lose this fish, so I hand grabbed him. BIG MISTAKE! I was bringing the fish over the gunnel when he shook and I lost my grip. As the fish was falling, the exposed point of the circle hook caught my finger and dug in and the weight of the fish ripped the hook back out. The fish was back in the water and I said no way I'm losing this #*(*%!*!% fish so I attempted bare handed grab #2. I put my death grip on him this time and combined with a little anger, he wasn't going anywhere. Well, he weighed in at 42lbs, but was a feisty devil. I took a look at my hand and it was covered in blood and a piece of meat the size of a bead was hanging from my finger. I took a photo with him and sent him on his way. They gotta get their licks in every once in a while or it wouldn't be much sport, would it? I think the evening bite was just starting to pick up and the tide was rolling out, but my girlfriend was waiting at the hotel and we were gonna get dinner, so I headed out. I think the way the fish were biting that day, I could have stayed out there all night and kept catching them. But it was an awesome day, my best day ever fishing actually, so I appreciate the opportunity I had.

    I also went out Sunday, bait was just as easy again. Setup on the same hole and not 5 minutes later, I start the day off with a 33lber! As I was releasing the fish, another pole slammed down and drag was just a peeling. This fish really had me fooled. I thought it was gonna go at least 40lbs. He put up an excellent fight. But ended up weighing 21 lbs. Then - not another fish the rest of the day! It's like the action I got that morning was the leftover of the feeding session from the previous day. I ran the river some and fished some other holes but didn't catch anything, and could barely get a nibble. I had heard about this before, but noticed it for myself on Sunday. The birds were all sitting on the water. They weren't flying around like they were on Saturday. Wonder if there is some kind of correlation to the fish bite?

    Overall I had a great trip! Caught five citation size fish this trip, and have 9 overall this year, compared to just one in all of 2007. It's great being out there fishing, nothing beats it. I have some pics. Unfortunately, the settings on my camera were off, so half of my pictures were white-washed. But I still managed to get some good ones in.
     

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  2. JPritch

    JPritch New Member

    Messages:
    1,852
    State:
    Lynchburg, VA
    Here are some more pictures:
     

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  3. JPritch

    JPritch New Member

    Messages:
    1,852
    State:
    Lynchburg, VA
    And some more (hope you guys like pics!):
     

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  4. JPritch

    JPritch New Member

    Messages:
    1,852
    State:
    Lynchburg, VA
    Big thanks to Mike (Cameron_Krazie) for showing me this part of the river last week! It's definitely on fire.
     
  5. rebcatman

    rebcatman New Member

    Messages:
    555
    State:
    Manassas, Virginia
    Josh,

    Thanks for the report. I suppose a cut finger is worth it after seeing the pictures, but I don't know if I would have or could have done the same.


    We were out on Saturday and did not have anywhere the action you had. We ran out of Hopewell and went North, we got plenty of bait by turkey Island, but no cats. We moved up to a hole by Presquile Reserve, and got one, and then moved onto the wing dams were we boated four fish.
     
  6. justlearning

    justlearning New Member

    Messages:
    202
    State:
    VA
    Josh....love it....love it....love it.....man a great report.....you had me setting on the edge of my chair....and the guys in the tourney was having a hard time....man congratulations on a great fishing trip this weekend and hope the finger heals up quickly......the girlfriend should be out there with you....don't you know...lol......

    Jerry
     
  7. Paraguayguy

    Paraguayguy Active Member

    Messages:
    1,651
    State:
    Virginia
    Great report. Makes me want to get out and do it. I think Friday I will give them a try. Muy brother from Lynchburg is coming down. Thanks again for the report.
     
  8. Flatheadhunter33

    Flatheadhunter33 New Member

    Messages:
    3,764
    State:
    Yuma, Arizona
    Nice fish! and nice battle scar too LOL!
     
  9. jwfish

    jwfish Member

    Messages:
    405
    State:
    columbus ohio
    Glad to see you had a great day on the river nice pitures.Yea my hands were cut to to heck and back after four days of fishing last week.
     
  10. cameron_krazie

    cameron_krazie New Member

    Messages:
    56
    State:
    virginia
    Just glad I was able to show you a good time fishing. Just goes to show you can do it on your own. I think you just needed some confidence. Now have fun and try new spots. Thats what it is all about searching around so you can have neumerious holes to fish... Good job!!:smile2: Oh, didnt I teach you anything.... make sure the net is always ready......:crazy:
     
  11. loanwizard

    loanwizard Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,297
    State:
    Coshocton,
    Josh, you are getting me excited! 7 more days till I get to try this storied fishery. I think my gill net shipped today!
     
  12. muzkrat

    muzkrat New Member

    Messages:
    399
    State:
    va.
    sounds like a lot going on. good report thanks for sharing. hope to get up that way this weekend.
     
  13. cataholic999

    cataholic999 New Member

    Messages:
    25
    State:
    virginia
    Glad you got on them Josh! You gotta love the James river. We (Team Cat-Tracker) did well Saturday also and made $500.lol It was up and down this weekend with the fronts moving through. Had some friends that fished that section Sunday and all they managed were two 44's and a 36.:wink: Keep up the good work and don't catch all the bait and stay out of my crappie hole. LMAO
     

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  14. blacksheep

    blacksheep New Member

    Messages:
    175
    State:
    NC
    Great report Josh. It makes me want to get back to the river... for some tuggin as U call it...
     
  15. mbandjb

    mbandjb New Member

    Messages:
    117
    State:
    Central Va
    Hey Josh,,
    Just vertured back to this site!!!!

    NICE fish...
    Be down tomorrow(sat)..

    mikeb
     
  16. 60lbclub

    60lbclub New Member

    Messages:
    46
    State:
    virginia
    awesome story.....I too was out on the james that weekend. Left form jordan point and did decent saturday with a 50, 35, 27 put in the boat and a bit slower sunday with a 25 being the biggest.....awesome fish
     
  17. brother hilljack

    brother hilljack New Member

    Messages:
    7,305
    State:
    Shelbyville, TN
    Sounds like a good weekend to me. Thanks for sharing your experience with those of us who can not fish right now.
     
  18. Team StrayKatz

    Team StrayKatz New Member

    Messages:
    11
    State:
    Virginia
    I went out on the 23rd and caught 2 small ones in Powell Creek and that was it .I had 2 nice pull downs but no other hook ups.Kind of a long day but I was fishing unfamiliar areas this day .