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Tuesday the 13th Tugs 3-13-18

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Tuesday the 13th Tugs 3-13-18
Had things to do today. But the nice weather forecast, along with a less favorable one for the next few days, changed my priorities. I went fishin'.

I usually start out my year on Utah Lake with a trip or two to Lindon. Cleared the ramp a bit before 8. Getting lighter later after last weekend. Purty sunrise, with quite a few clouds. But calm. Air temp 37 and water temp in the harbor 50 at launch. Up to over 52 at 1:30 departure. Main lake was 48 early and dropped to 47.4 out in deeper water. Warmed to almost 50 by midday. Water between 3.5 and 4 feet deep all the way out of the harbor.

Second cast...inside the point on the boat channel...I felt a thump, set the hook and felt some heavy chugs. Yeee hawww. Walleye, thinks I. A funny looking one though. Kinda golden color, with big scales and no teeth. Good tugs anyways.

Found a couple of feisty white bass right on the north point of the channel entrance. Great...got bait. Headed for the bubbleup. I cruised right on by since they had not put out the marker buoys on the pipe yet. But through past experience I found the pipe and started slinging some plastic. Good exercise but no love from any resident fishies. Couldn't find much on sonar either.

Disappointed in the lack of findable fish, I rigged two bait rods and started prospecting for my first kitty fish of the year. Did my usual big S turn thing, working from about 4 feet of depth out to about 6'. It was a long time before the line popped free of the clip on one of the rods. I took the rod out of the holder and felt the line. There was something live on the other end. But when that live thing felt me feeling it...it let go. Sheesh. Touchy.

And so it went. The fish were still cold and not very active. Summer fish gulp the bait, put the line over their shoulders and boogie. The fish today seemed almost dainty. Gum the bait...dance off a few steps...then spit. Can't believe they were all just inexperienced.

I did finally get the hook in one. Felt big. You know the feeling you get when you haul back to set the hook and the rod tip just stays there...and then the line starts to slowly move off the reel? As soon as I decided I had something worthwhile I put the hooked fish rod back in the holder, with a bit less drag, and quickly cranked in the other rod to avoid problems. But when I picked up rod number one, it had no weight left on it. It is rare for me to have a cat come unbuttoned after I set the hook. But that big ol' biggun musta been REAL experienced. He know how to arrange an early release.

After a couple more "pop and drops" the line popped loose from my bigger rod and started moving off with some authority. I reeled in the second rod before setting the hook and then flipped the bail, let the line come tight and banged the hook home. Now that sunofagun started running toward me and I had a lot of slack. I thought it was deja vu all over again and was just starting to practice my vocabulary when I realized what was happening, reeled fast to catch up and was back in the saddle.

The fish fought hard for being in water under 50 degrees. In fact, it did not want to leave the bottom and turned my tube around several times as I rassled with it. I was adding inches to its probable length with every minute it abused me. But, alas, it was a measly 26 inches when I extricated it from the net. I measured and took a picture of it on my bump board, but did not include my contest patch. If I can't get better than that I shouldn't be in the contest.

It was good I landed that cat. Had several more inquiries on the way back in but no more serious lip injuries to catfish. But...I know where they live and I'll be back (Sorry Arnold).

Still calm and nice as I came in after 1 PM. Quite a few bank tanglers but nobody catching anything, according to a couple of folks I talked to. One guy had a small white bass.

As I went out this morning I heard guys using goose calls all over the place. I wondered "What the heck?" Goose hunting is over. Right? Then I noticed all the real geese flying around. Even got a couple to pose for a picture.

Had a couple of beautiful swans fly almost directly over me too...but I did not notice them in time and could not get the camera up for a shot. Purty though.

Great to finally get some tugs. More to come. I hope.

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Re: [TubeDude] Tuesday the 13th Tugs 3-13-18 In reply to
Good for you! I'm glad you got some tugs and something to take pictures of!

That second rod can be a real hassle. Sometimes I when I lose one like that I wonder how much it really increases your catch to have both rods in the water. I haven't quit using it yet though.

Those geese are really noisy this time of year. The last couple of "evening" trips I was on they kept it up until 9 or 10 P.M. when I headed home. I was glad I wasn't camping out there, I wouldn't have gotten any sleep.

That big one that let go may have had more of a bony jaw than a cat?

Keep up the good work!
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Re: [TubeDude] Tuesday the 13th Tugs 3-13-18 In reply to
Ha! I caught a 27 incher... Ya just gotta know how to ketch 'em.
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Re: [TubeDude] Tuesday the 13th Tugs 3-13-18 In reply to
Good story and pics to go with it.....tks for posting.. I always enjoy it even though I'm usually not chasing the felines...BTW...had some good success out on the ice with some of the "TD" lures.....tks again, and ...Guluk...
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Re: [TubeDude] Tuesday the 13th Tugs 3-13-18 In reply to
Great post as usual Pat, and you came out smelling good. Got me interested in getting some gear together here real soon. Haven't even touched a pole yet this year.
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Re: [Boatloadakids] Tuesday the 13th Tugs 3-13-18 In reply to
We know you to be an honest guy, Lynn. We will accept your claim that the fish was 27 inches...even though you did not take a picture with a ruler.

My fish was quickly just flopped on the bump board and I did not stretch it and pinch the tail. It may have come close to 27.

The first fish does not a season make. But it sure is good to start getting some catfish love.

By the way, your lovely kisser in your picture makes even a catfish look purty by comparison.
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Re: [Jmorfish] Tuesday the 13th Tugs 3-13-18 In reply to
Thanks. Glad you like my adventures. I also enjoyed your ice fishing posts. Since I gave it up I gotta be content with the chillin' and drillin' of others.

Glad the trinkets worked for you.

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Re: [high_n_dry] Tuesday the 13th Tugs 3-13-18 In reply to
Thanks Glenn. You gotta mend your ways and get back on the water.

I just finished doing a major reorganizing of my vast (half vast) photo files. Part of that was setting up folders for "Family and Friends". You and your family provided a lot of pics in your personal file. I hadn't realized just how many trips we shared.

In checking "properties" it shows there are 52 pics in that folder. If you would like copies, let me know and I'll make a disc for you.

If nothing else, get your toon aired up and let's go hit it...somewhere.

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Re: [TubeDude] Tuesday the 13th Tugs 3-13-18 In reply to
Hey Pat nice to see ya on the water again... Always like following your adventures even when I can't join ya... Glad to see ya fooled a couple...

Enough of you guys down south catchin fish you probably could have the team lead if you'll all get them entered... (BTW we can let that one go w/o the label since it's not the top fish if you want to enter it) Since no one else is helping Ahi out up north, you ought to enjoy the lead while you can... Actually looks like you're finding some nice fish to start the season... Good luck and thanks for a fun report, I enjoyed it... J
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Re: [SkunkedAgain] Tuesday the 13th Tugs 3-13-18 In reply to
Like BLK, I consider that fish to only be a "starter" fish. We are going to work our way up from here. I plan to add about a foot to my 26 incher before the end of the contest. Might even put up a couple not much over 30...just to keep the peasants thinking they have a chance.

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Re: [TubeDude] Tuesday the 13th Tugs 3-13-18 In reply to
great report Pat, Now you and BLK just keep catching them 27 inch and under. So I wont have to work to hard this year Wink

____________________________________________________

Three-fourths of the Earth's surface is water, and one-fourth is land. It is quite clear that the good Lord intended us to spend triple the amount of time fishing as taking care of the lawn.
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Re: [Ahi1953] Tuesday the 13th Tugs 3-13-18 In reply to
You are a worthy competitor. But as I recall, your first fish weren't too big either.

It's a long way to the finish line. I hope we all get plenty of trips in and that we all catch lots of fish along the way. And let's not get so caught up in only catching big fish that we don't show proper respect and appreciation for the smaller ones that wanna play with us along the way. They need exercise too.

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Re: [TubeDude] Tuesday the 13th Tugs 3-13-18 In reply to
Well, that will give the rest of us northerners time to catch up with the south before we get too far behind... Appreciate that hospitality... Looks like the south did take the lead today.... Mostly because of a 4 to 3 fish lead on the top 10 but a lead is a lead... Since Ahi is the only one helping up north you might be able to run up a big lead before the north thaws out... Nice to see the fish starting to feed down your way, give me hopes of fish in a month or so anyway... Later J
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Re: [TubeDude] Tuesday the 13th Tugs 3-13-18 In reply to
thanx for the info pat, glad you got out and saw the darn geese that evaded my shells all season
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Re: [TubeDude] Tuesday the 13th Tugs 3-13-18 In reply to
Pat, you bring up a point that I've been very curious about and I know we probably can't do this, but I'd love to know how many total catfish are caught by each contest angler over the full contest this year. Especially big fish, be cool to know how many fish over 24" are caught... Anyone willing to keep track of their fish and report a for interest column on the chart of results? I think the number will be rather impressive... Not sure I could keep up with 70 anglers reporting their cats each trip, but I'd sure like to know that info... Later J
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Re: [SkunkedAgain] Tuesday the 13th Tugs 3-13-18 In reply to
It is a cool idea to have an annual count on total cats caught and sizes. But rather than making it a (busy work) part of the contest reporting process you might want to just ask for a final total at the end of the contest...on a separate thread.

I maintain 3 separate fishing logs each year. One is a basic trip log...destination, time, weather, water temps, species caught...and sizes, bait or lures used, etc. The second log is for each water I fish...listing dates, times, areas fished, results, etc. The third and last log is by species...date, location, numbers caught, sizes, etc.

I am attaching a copy of the section on channel cats from my 2016 logs.

I refer back to my logs several times a year. They help remind me to go back to things that work and to quit "messin' widdit" if my results are off. Also remind me of tactics, tackle and techniques to use under varying conditions.

(This post was edited by TubeDude on Mar 15, 2018, 6:05 AM)
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Re: [TubeDude] Tuesday the 13th Tugs 3-13-18 In reply to
First warm weather we get all year and I’m stuck in New Hampshire all week in a dang Blizzard. Supposed to start snowing there about the time my plane lands. Anywho, what’s your biggest cat out of Utah lake to date Mr. Tubedude. Embellishment and exaggerations welcome. I need a good story to get throu this nor’easter!


"All my life I have had secret places. I like secret places. They make me feel smug and superior, two of the really great feelings."

-Pat MacManus
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Re: [TubeDude] Tuesday the 13th Tugs 3-13-18 In reply to
Pat that's a great idea, to have everyone try and track their fish... I've gotten out of the habit of keeping my log and I need to get back into it... I think I was trying to track too much so it took too long to update, which was nice later, but not so good when it took me 15 minutes to enter...But after seeing your log, I think I need to get into it again... Thanks for encouraging me to do that...

Oh Matt passed on the small lip grippers are 6.8" and built in China the maker is YDZN and they are $3.75 a pair on Amazon, but they take a long time to be delivered... But they held up well to a nice sized trout the other day so they will probably do well on the cats...Later J
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Re: [fishjon] Tuesday the 13th Tugs 3-13-18 In reply to
"Anywho, what’s your biggest cat out of Utah lake to date Mr. Tubedude."

Biggest was in the early 1980s. Weight 24#. Length was a couple of inches beyond the end of a yardstick. Caught on a whole white bass, fished at night at Bird Island. No...I was not in my float tube.

That was during a time when there were good numbers of big fish in the lake. Ten pounders were fairly common and quite a few between 15 and 20. There were also a lot more big cats in Willard...before the introduction of wipers and shad. I caught several between 15 to 20 pounds and witnessed one almost 30.

It was during that time that I first wrote my epic adventure "The Monster of Willard Bay". Since you okayed the use of embellishments and exaggerations I will attach a copy for your reading enjoyment.

My condolences on being stuck back there in that weather. I used to work for a company out of New Haven, CT and I got to "enjoy" a heavy dump nor'easter while back there one time too. And that was while I was living in Tucson, AZ. Double dose of nasty.

The weird weather here in Utah still has all the fish kinda grumpy. Hope they warm up and get more active soon. Also hope they give you a good welcome when you get back.

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Re: [TubeDude] Tuesday the 13th Tugs 3-13-18 In reply to
Many thanks for the good reads. As my user signiture suggests, I’m a big fan of the humorous short story. Have you ever published any?


"All my life I have had secret places. I like secret places. They make me feel smug and superior, two of the really great feelings."

-Pat MacManus
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Re: [fishjon] Tuesday the 13th Tugs 3-13-18 In reply to
Thanks for the kindly comments.

I too am a MacManus fan. With a name like Patrick, he can't be all bad. I have enjoyed many a chortle and guffaw while reading his stuff.

I have written lotsa verse and short stories...much of it related to fishing. Some has been published, but only in small organizational or intercompany things. I have written for a couple of newspaper outdoor sections and a couple of outdoor magazines.

Here are a couple of pieces from my past...not edited in recent years.

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Re: [TubeDude] Tuesday the 13th Tugs 3-13-18 In reply to
Hey Pat that's good stuff, I too fell in love with fishing over hoppers in the Logan River under the bridge by the water lab... Total blast every boy should be able to have the same experience... Well written piece, thanks for sharing it... J
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Re: [SkunkedAgain] Tuesday the 13th Tugs 3-13-18 In reply to
Yeah (sniff, sniff). That was from a time long ago, when there were no cell-phones, Facebook, internet, cable TV and other modern technologies that lure kids into things besides fishing and other outdoor enjoyments.

For a lot of us older folks it is interesting to speculate on how different our lives might have been today if we had the same "blessings" when we were younger.

Thanks for your kindly review.

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Re: [TubeDude] Tuesday the 13th Tugs 3-13-18 In reply to
thanks for the post TubeTube. I always admire your year round devotion !