Monday, August 2, 2010

Fishing Under the Lights for Bluegill on Smith Lake

 This weekend my son-in-law and I decided to make a night fishing trip on Smith Lake. This time of year you can only fish the lake at daylight or make a night trip under the dock lights because of the heat. We arrived at the launch around 6:30 PM and spent the better part of sundown moving from each nook to divert all the boat traffic. We landed the usual small gills with the fly and micro light until dark. At 8:30 we hit the first dock light and I got the first hit fishing in depths of 70 to 80 ft. I managed to land a nice strip bass using my micro-light under a dock light 5 ft. above the water.



Nice Strip
Fighting an 18" strip bass on a micro light rod is quite a challenge. Landing this strip using my 7 1/2 ft. micro rod was like using my Temple Fork 7 1/2 ft. fly rod, both rods requires the angler to use skill in landing a fish of this size. I learned long time ago when I first started using the long rods that you got to have patience when playing a larger fish on 4 lb. test line and lighter otherwise you will have more break offs than fish caught. My son-in-law used the fly rod while I went with the micro light. We decided it would be less line tangle if we fished that way especially in a pitch black dark situation. The fly rod proved the winner of the night with my son-in-law catching numbers of gills directly under the lights using the deadly moth.

The Moth is the winner again
We noticed moths flying beneath the lights right after dark so this was the most logical fly to go with and it proved successful. This trip was a change of pace for both of us resulting in less humidity and heat. Really an enjoyable trip.

9 comments:

Pat Cohen (smalliestalker) said...

Bill....looks like a nice time...I thought of you yesterday...I went to a Bass Pro shop and in their fish tank were the largest blue gills I have ever seen.....Had to be over 2 lbs.....

Bill Trussell said...

Pat
My goal is to catch a 1 lb. gill out of the local lake I fish--Smith Lake and have it mounted. I have come close 13oz. 14oz. but no 1 lb. yet but I will get it if not this fall next spring. Who know I may even get that 1 lb. plus. Thanks for the comment.

Chris Barclay said...

That looks like lots of fun, Bill! Very nice gill your son-in-law caught too.
Do you have any pictures of your moth fly?

Bill Trussell said...

Hi Chris
There is an image of the moth at in the intro. of this post. These things are deadly for bass also. The surface water temp was 89 degree, the other night and the only thing coming to the surface was the bluegill. The bass were doing nothing. The bass will kill these flies when the surface temps are lower. Thanks for the comment.

Chris Barclay said...

Somehow I just scrolled right by the fly photo. Thanks!

Tar Heel Fly Fishing said...

Bill,

Very nice fish! You guys manage to always find the largest! The bluegill has some bulk to him too!

Bill Trussell said...

Hi Tyler
Fishing under the lights is a lot of fun but just like in daylight hours the conditions need to be right, we were fishing falling water with a surface temp at 90 degree. I caught the strip in a depth of 60 ft. it was a hoot to get that thing out in that kind of depth--took a while on the micro-light 4lb.test line. Thanks for the comment.

Dennis said...

Nice write up Bill, I'll bet that striper was a blast on the 4lb test, they are tough fish. Man you guys know where the big bluegills live, another nice one (thumbs up)

Bill Trussell said...

Hi Dennis
Next to the fly rod the micro-light set-up is my next favorite. It is really like fishing the fly rod with the exception of the reel. Just a great way to feed your habit for the fly rod.