Monday, August 15, 2016

Killing Time at Core Creek

This past Sunday I had an opportunity to go to Core Creek, a large lake nearby. Because I didn't have much luck at it previously,  I decided to head to its spillway, where I knew there was a greater concentration of fish. There were carp, sunfish, bass, catfish, and even a slim chance for a white perch, a species I still need for the lifelist.

With one rod I threw a little bit of corn out in hopes of a carp or two, and with my ultralight, I tied on a jig with a piece of gulp minnow. Immediately I was into bluegills on the jig. Despite the murky (and smelly, to be honest) water, the fish were aggressive and appeared to be very healthy as well. Some where also surprisingly colorful, which I would not have expected given the low visibility in the water. 

A bunch of bluegills later, I had made a bad cast and was reeling in my jig quickly, with it skimming the top of the water. I had a small but savage strike as the jig was on top. I was mildly amused as I lifted up a miniature largemouth. How something so small could have produced a splash larger than itself is beyond me.

More bluegills followed, as expected.

Between the never ending waves of bluegills, I hooked into a real gem - a spectacular emerald pumpkinseed. I don't know if this is the most colorful sunfish I have ever caught, but it had to be close. 

Eventually, I got tired of bluegills in the merciless August sun, so I sat in the shade sipping water while waiting for the carp rod to do something. I glanced down for a second, then glanced back up again, and couldn't see my rod. I sprinted to the bank where I saw my rod on the ground, fallen over next to the rock I propped it against, the line slowly moving along. 

I knew straight away this wasn't a carp. Carp bolt as soon as they feel the hook. I reeled it in uneventfully while something gave a rather sluggish fight on the other end of my line. I wasn't too surprised when I saw a little mouth and whiskers emerge from the muddiness: A bullhead.

Given the slight mottling, I assumed it was a brown, but a quick chin barbel check proved it was a yellow. It wasn't big by any means, but larger than all the other yellow bullheads I've encountered.

The heat eventually got to me and I headed back, calling it an outing. Not bad at all, finishing with a pb yellow bullhead and a stunner pumpkinseed. However, the day was definitely wasn't over yet...

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