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Everything posted by TNKen

  1. TNKen

    Live Bait Filters

    As some of you know, I started making filters for the Super Bait Tank II's a couple of years ago. The material I use is very durable, as I have filters that I have used in the Vest tank and my Creek tank over three years old. Only way I have found to kill them is they either blow out of the boat or you drop them while washing them out. They also double as a scrubber to clean the tank! I keep meaning to send some with Ezell to the Striper Club meeting, but you know how that goes. They are $5 each if you want to give them a shot. Shipping is about $2.50 for anywhere from 2-6 filters. I have an Ebay site and get $14.00 for two, but will cut you guys a little better deal. I'm not making much on them; its more of a service to fellow fishermen. I can also custom cut filters if you can supply me dimensions. The material is about 3/4" thick. If you want any, shoot me a message. Ken
  2. TNKen


    The shoal in the bottom pic put the first ding in my boat. We missed the slot by about 12" and bam.
  3. TNKen


    The Holston and Watauga collectively are two of the best trout rivers east of the Mississippi. They hold roughly 8-10,000 trout per mile of river. I like to fish when the river is generating using jerk bait lures, but of course, that means you have to have a boat of some description. You can also find places here and there where you can cast from the bank on generating waters. Spoons and spinners also work at times. Option #2 is flyrod, but that takes patience and knowledge of the river and hatches. Most fish on low water, or small releases, but this can also be done on generating water. Option #3 is the standard natural bait method, corn, salmon eggs, minnows, etc. I can suggest a guide or two to get you started.
  4. TNKen

    Lowrance HDS Live

    Be careful, there is the Live which was introduced last October, and now the LiveSight which was introduced recently which looks to be the addition of a new transducer. Good online reviews, but I have heard otherwise third-hand from some users. I was looking at the Garmin LiveScope, but keep getting choked on the price.
  5. Nice boat. You should be able to travel most anywhere once you learn the slots and rocks. Biologists now say S. Holston holds approximately 10,000 fish per mile. No shortage anywhere. Watauga is not much different. Some guides trout are easier to catch on the 'Taug, on flies, but not my cup of tea. Big thing on the Watauga. Remember Doe River dumps in out of Roan Mountain on the upper end of Elizabethton. If it rains, the Doe will muddy the lower end of the Watauga for days.
  6. First and foremost, download the TVA app on your phone to keep up with generation schedules. And check it no less frequently than hourly when on the rivers. I prefer to put in low, run upriver, and fish down. That way if they turn off the river, you are making a run to the trailer. Had that happen several times unexpectedly. All of these rivers are pretty much impassable without generation flow. My boat is a 25 1/2' inboard jet. I need 2' to take off and set down, 15" to draft and float, and about 8" to run depending on how much weight I am carrying (people, fuel, gear bait tank full/empty). Go to a pool supply shop and get an underwater repair patch kit, about $50. It is two tubes of heavy putty that you cut and mix. Sets up underwater. May come in handy. It isn't if you will hit something, just when and how bad are the results. Watauga is the most difficult of all. Cincinnati Insurance Company can attest to that on my boat. Misjudged a slot and major damage. Use the Wilber guide for generation schedule, NOT Watauga. Watauga minimum flow for me to be comfortable in most places is about 2,200, but I like more. I can do a few sections at 1,600 TVA messes with Watauga daily. Right now, it is running 2,650. I am comfortable on the lower end, avoid the Sycamore Shoals area, and I've never been above B-Cliffs. Holston minimum flow for me is 2,400. I can run from Boone Lake to the Wier Dam on this flow. I like 2,750 more, but this is fine. Several bad areas. Hickory Tree rapids, Cedar Falls, and the slot coming up out of Bluff City. Tons of miscellaneous rocks to remember and avoid. Clinch below Norris. I have fished several sections. Typically, I look for 2 generators of at least 6,000. I know a couple of sections. Ezell is the man here.
  7. TNKen

    Spring fever

    My tub is in the shop getting a paint job. Trey was on Boone last weekend. Water temp was 46. Blowing a ton of water out of Holston and Watauga, making trout fishing tough as well.
  8. TNKen

    LED Boat Lights

    I have a large LED light bar on my boat that I can never get adjusted to the right height when running. It is on the T-Top. There is no happy medium. II set it so it shines when I am running, then it blinds you from the reflection within the boat. Set it for running at idle, and it is in the stratosphere when the boat is on plane. I mostly use it for docking, and loading, so it is set for a low shine. As far as the LED strips go, I have two blue ones on my T-Top. Wildlife office told me if the boat was bouncing, and giving the appearance of a "flashing" blue light, they would ticket me. I like the blue as it doesn't give blinding light at night. Green or red would probably do well too. My thoughts on the LED stick on strips is they work well. The wiring is the hardest part. The LED strips are in my mind easily replaceable.
  9. TNKen


    My wife's motto: Gotta spend it to save it.
  10. TNKen


    I've gotten a few over 6" and one 12" once, but usually like Ezell. Depending on when, where, and the bait I'm using, I'm an octopus hook guy too. Anything from a #6 to a 10/0. We need to make a run for the 7" alewives; tell me when and where.
  11. TNKen


    We began turning off the light at night and really improved the catch.
  12. TNKen

    Well that didnt go as planned...

    Main things in my boat are screwdrivers, crescent wrench, vice grips, zip ties and duct tape. And, a bag full of electrical connectors, fuses and a crimp tool. The electrical bag gets used all the time on bait tank wires and pump wires.
  13. TNKen

    Well that didnt go as planned...

    Sorry Rusty, Let me know how it does when you get it working. Ken
  14. TNKen

    Watson's Open House

    I can do that!
  15. Paid the entry fee and have a house rented. Planned on giving it a shot. Tried last year, but somehow a fractured femur got in the way. Anyone else giving it a shot? Ken
  16. Site rep. Traveled to Hartwell on Wednesday after New Year. Got set up at the house we rented. Had all kinds of bait with us that needed care. Fished Thursday and Friday. I though we were fishing for decent fish, but, oh no, turns out we were fishing for dinks. Was told two twenty's would easily win. Turns out one twenty would have won. Managed to pick up one fish each on Thursday and Friday 4-5 pounds each. Marked a bunch of fish on various spots. Got ready to go on Saturday. Picked up the striper tubes as this is a live weigh in tourney. Tied rigs and got rods ready to go on Saturday. As it turns out, you don't need many rigs ready when you aren't catching anything. Saturday came. Up at 4:00, on the water by 5:30 for a 7:00 lines in time. Check in is at 3:45. Scouted some spots, and got set up. Did I mention that all the spots we marked on Friday were now unfishable because of a 15-20 mph wind and 2' whitecaps? Found some coves and picked up our first fish around 12:00. A whopping 1.2 pound striper. We are weighing that monster in come hell or high water. Throw him in the bait tank where he seems relatively happy. Move to our last spot which is a series of points that we didn't scout. About 2:30 we pick up a 3.4 pounder, and about 2:50 we pick up a 5.1 pounder. A whopping 8.5 pound bag limit. With the run and the whitecaps, we packed up and headed to the weigh in. Finished 18th out of 62 boats. For a lake we had never seen before, I was OK with the finish. We started in a large cove, and probably should have stayed there. Big fish of the tourney came from there at 16 pounds. Winning bag was 17.4 pounds. Turns out Hartwell apparently had a large die off this spring/summer. Lesson is be happy with the fish we have here in Tennessee. We will try again next year. I now have some spots and techniques I didn't have before. Striper fishing with a number 8 hook being one of them.
  17. I have an Ulterra that is like new and needs a home. Like new with a 48" shaft. Friend of mine passed away and wife is trying to sell it. I can check if you're interested.
  18. TNKen


    Where does it break? I spool with braid and use a leader. My experience is that straight floro is somewhat brittle and has little stretch. I have used Seguar and Yo-Zuri. Ended up giving up on it. I could never get a terminal knot that was reliable. I think you have to use several feet of the stuff, i.e. 10-12 before it has enough stretch.
  19. TNKen


    That's down the road a little bit!! The picture of her with that fish actually led to the marriage. She posted it on social media, and somehow Anthony saw it. They started talking and agreed to meet one weekend when we were working ski patrol. They have been inseparable ever since. Anthony isn't much of an outdoorsman. We took him to Norris a year or so ago on a bluebird day when it was about 20 degrees. Chased gulls all day. Only caught one fish, but he got it in the boat. He does enjoy going fishing with us, and he tries hard, but with his schedule, he doesn't get much of an opportunity to go.
  20. TNKen


    Every now and then on my Lowrance, I can pick up a thermocline. Typically in deeper water. Usually about 40' or so of a lightly colored band.
  21. TNKen


    Mine is 47, but my boat record is 52. We had multiple fish over 45 that weekend, one 50 and a 52. My next personal goal is of course a 50. Here is me and my daughter with a 44.
  22. TNKen


    Be careful about temperature change from the lake to the tank. More than about 5 degrees is harmful. After you net the bait, I usually put them into a bucket of water for a few minutes. Then lift them out of the water into the tank. Do not dump the slime and scales into the tank. Filters, keep your filters clean. When they first go in, check about every 10 minutes. After they purge and quit sliming, check less frequently.
  23. I have pretty much gone to braid with a leader. Depending on the fish, sometimes it is just a mono leader, other times a floro coated leader, sometimes a pure floro. We fish for trout in the Holston a lot. Crystal clear water, lots of fishing pressure. Everyone on the boat uses the same type of jerk bait. Some different color patterns. Braid and about a 4' floro coated leader. I have a couple of friends that can catch four to my one. I can put on the same color or even take that rod and lure to use. Its all in the presentation.