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Troutgirl

East Tennessee Lakers & Trout Part 2, 2017

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10 hours ago, Kurtomac said:

SOHO is that south holston?

 

Soho is the entertainment district in the west end of London, England. As Phil Collins once sang, "...the streets of Soho, that's where your kids go..."  :wink:

 

It's also the nickname of South Holston Lake.....wanna go...? You just go like you're going to Bristol Racetrack on highway 421. The 421 Ramp is about 10-15 miles past the racetrack. It's about the same distance as Watauga.

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22 hours ago, TrophyLakerTaker said:

im going sat to either soho or watagua.  been working in Dallas. last trip to soho was productive.  2 person limit of rainbiws and lakers

 

How deep were the fish? The only time I fished Soho was last fall when the lake was already down about 20 feet. I got snagged repeatedly. I want to try it again whilst the water is high and the snags are low! With the water down, there were humps all over the place and the channel isn't very wide. I'm a bit gun-shy about Soho but want to try it again.

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went to watagua. sat. morn early... took my son water skiing first since it was warm and glassy.  fishing was pretty good.  nothing real big.  caught 8 lakers 7 bows 2 bass and a dandy walleye..  thermocline is only about 40ft.  fish were all over 40 to 90.

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22 hours ago, TrophyLakerTaker said:

pic of walleye caught on 7 color lead core and small purple spoon.  released 4 smaller lakers

 

 

Do you think spoons are the best lure for Walleyes? It's been two years since I caught a Wally at Watauga. The only Wally I've caught this season was on a very small spoon aimed at 'Bows. This was at Santeetlah Lake. I gave my sister half of a fillet and she wants me to catch more Walleyes. I've finally caught a couple of Rainbows on crawlers behind cowbells at Watauga but no Walleyes. In Chilhowee the crawler/cowbells combo caught more than just 'Bows. I also caught Walleyes and Yellow Perch. Do you think some kind of crawler rig would up my odds on catching Walleyes, over spoons?

 

I hope that my Fish Hawk TD works correctly next time out, which will be one day this week. I'm curious what the temperatures are in the 40-90 foot range. If it wanks out on me this time, I'll exchange it.

 

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ive tried crawler rigs on watagua and soho.  i caught a few on crawlers when i first started fishing watagus.best baits trolling have been small spoons, flicker shads, hot n tots, rapala slash baits.  20-40 ft zone for walleyes, but they are few and far between.  night trolling or casting jerk baits as shad surface is the best tatic along with vertical jigging.  i dont fish nights much any more

20170722_120654_resized.jpg

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My friend Darrell and I hit Watauga at daybreak yesterday. The surface water was in the low 80's. We went over to the dam cove and dropped the Fish Hawk TD down to 125 feet. The temp was 60 at 40 feet. The 50's started at 50 feet. At 125 feet it was 49. TrophyLakerTaker was spot on when he said fish were 40-90 feet. That's where the water was that suited cool fish. It took us about an hour of trolling up the lake to get our first fish. We had 3 spoons out, two Dipsy Divers and the downrigger. We had two lead-core lines out with plugs. The first strike was on a Rapala Scatter Rap on lead-core. It was Darrell's turn to fight the first fish. He reeled in a nice 23" Laker. About 10 minutes later the 50 foot Dipsy spoon, a green & gold Nantahala Tackle NH2 (2") was struck and I reeled in a 22" Rainbow.

 

Then we had a long lull. We went past the big island and turned around and went back towards the dam. When we were almost down to the dam there was a light strike on the 100 foot Dipsy Diver spoon. It had a big Michigan Stinger Magnum spoon on it. I thought it was gonna be a small Spotted Bass or Walleye but no-ooooo, a 10" Rainbow managed to hook itself somehow. We only kept it because I have a friend who likes me to bring  her a small trout for her small appetite. We agreed it was still Darrell's turn since the midget trout didn't count. We went past the big island and saw bait and fish all around us but no strikes. We turned around and started back downstream again. As we approached the big island, there was a strike on a Rapala Scatter Rap plug behind a planner board. The rod was next to me. I grabbed it and told Darrell it feels good sized. I handed the rod to him and I took the board off the line a few moments later for him. Some minutes later I slipped the net under a 26.5" , 7.5 pound Laker. It was a real fattie for it's length.

 

We kept going downstream towards the dam. After about 20 minutes the same Rapala Scatter Rap plug was struck again. At first I didn't think it felt very big but when I got about half the line in, the Rainbow came to the surface and jumped three times. Still, I didn't realize how big it was till it got near the boat and got mad. Darrell slipped the net underneath my 26" , 6.35 pound Rainbow just as the plug popped out of it's mouth.

 

We fished another hour to no avail. It was siesta time for the fish, apparently, and it was getting H-O-T. We pulled into Rat Branch at 1:45 p.m. and made our way home for the fillet festival. We didn't catch many but we had 4 trout over 20 inches. I had my biggest Rainbow ever. Darrell had his second and third Lakers ever and they were good ones.

WATAUGA  26 July 2017 6+ pound Rainbow and  7.5 LAKER 003.JPG

WATAUGA  26 July 2017 6+ pound Rainbow and  7.5 LAKER 006.JPG

WATAUGA  26 July 2017 6+ pound Rainbow and  7.5 LAKER 008.JPG

WATAUGA  26 July 2017 6+ pound Rainbow and  7.5 LAKER 009.JPG

WATAUGA  26 July 2017 6+ pound Rainbow and  7.5 LAKER 012.JPG

WATAUGA  26 July 2017 6+ pound Rainbow and  7.5 LAKER 013.JPG

WATAUGA  26 July 2017 6+ pound Rainbow and  7.5 LAKER 015.JPG

Edited by Troutgirl
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24 minutes ago, inthebox30lbs said:

Awesome fish, what a couple awesome rainbows!!

 

The 22 incher liked your spoon. Plugs fished better than spoons on this day. The 3 biggest fish all hit Rapala Scatter Rap plugs with a green back, on lead-core line behind a board.

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Nice trout. Glad to see someone has time to catch those big trout in watauga. I've trolled a scatterrap before with no luck. Might have to try them again.

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Rachael we caught a nice walleye on a 10ft diving crawfish colored strike king 3xd plug by that big island when we went to Watauga

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1 hour ago, Kurtomac said:

Rachael we caught a nice walleye on a 10ft diving crawfish colored strike king 3xd plug by that big island when we went to Watauga

 

I remember....that's the only Watauga Walleye willing to jump in the boat with me....even after all these trips. Walleyes must learn about me in school ! :wink:

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12 hours ago, Tidewater21 said:

Nice trout. Glad to see someone has time to catch those big trout in watauga. I've trolled a scatterrap before with no luck. Might have to try them again.

 

I've caught Lakers on some of the bigger Scatter Raps. I've caught more Lakers and some Rainbows on the smaller, (2.75") Scatter Rap Shads in Blue Back Herring and Bleak colors. Rapala has discontinued this plug. You can still find 'em some places. I ordered 3 of the Blue Back Herring from Cabelas last night. I think that I've caught at least one fish every time I've fished one of these. Blue Back Herring and Bleak aren't too far apart in color.

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11 hours ago, Jcbuilder said:

How deep are these trout on Watauga? Anyone tried below Boone dam? 

 

It was 60 degrees at 40 feet the other day. The Rainbows might even come up some higher to grab somethin'. The Laker hits ought to be deeper, 50-100 feet. It was 49 at 125 feet.

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10 hours ago, TrophyLakerTaker said:

Great report.  thanks.  persistence pays off and coming to watagua to get a trophy tennesee rainbow.  way to trout girls

 

I was lucky that Darrell was with me this day. He got the board off the line quickly and I was able to keep the line tight as the fish charged the boat and jumped 3 times along the way. Rainbows love to charge the boat, the path of least resistance, till they see the boat. The plug flew out just as Darrell netted her.

 

,Last summer I lost a Rainbow that looked twice as big. I was looking at the lines on the left and behind me I heard the strike. I like the clickers on. As I was taking the rod out of the holder, a big, silver missile broke the surface. About a minute later when I getting the planner board off the line, the whopper got off. It was charging the boat and the plug fell out. Rainbows are way harder to land than Lakers. There's bigger 'Bows out there! 3 weeks ago, I had a fish, likely a Rainbow, destroy a too small clip and steal my spoon.

 

Every time I go to Watauga I feel like I'm gonna catch a big fish. Frequently, I do!

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Next time I hit Watauga, I'm gonna try the 22 foot Dipsy Diver again. I didn't even pack it this last trip. I took the 50 and 100 foot Dipsy Divers. The 22 footer drew so many strikes about 3 weeks ago. It probably goes a bit deeper than 22 feet with a lot of line out. This last time, the 60 degree line was 40 feet. 60 is very tolerable for Rainbows and the 60's might be where some of the baitfish are...??? I'm gonna find out if they'll streak up and grab a spoon in the 22-30 foot range. I got way more total strikes 3 weeks ago when I was running the little Dipsy.....

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I was working on my Dipsy Divers today. The Dipsy that I've been describing as a 22 foot diver, in fact goes deeper. It's a size 0 (zero). It goes to 35 feet or forty with a huge amount of line out. I had been thinking that it was a Mini, which is the one that will go to 22 feet. My little, green Zero is going back to the lake! Soon....!

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Darrell and I went back to Watauga yesterday. We got out on the lake at the break of dawn. Instead of starting at Rat Branch, we motored up to the Butler Bridge and started trolling downstream. We put out 6 lines and kept 6 lines out the whole time except for pulling in one of the two leadcore lines on turns so they wouldn't collide. We had two Dipsy Divers out, the 35' and 50-70' models with spoons. I started the downrigger at 66' and we pulled a diving plug behind a planar board. After about an hour of trolling I dropped the downrigger to 73 feet. We hadn't had a strike when we turned to go back upstream just before the dam. The morning wind had pushed several small groups of baitfish down towards the dam and Rat Branch Point. No strikes did we get. When we were halfway back upstream towards the big island, about 9 a.m. , we finally got a strike on the 35 foot Dipsy but we didn't get a hook-up. About 15 minutes later the deeper Dipsy was hit but the lucky fish didn't get hooked. We were getting discouraged.

 

We went past the big island and turned to go back downstream. I dropped the downrigger to 81 feet. I told Darrell that I'd checked the Solunar Tables and there was a major feeding period from 11:20 a.m. till 1:20 p.m. Thankfully, that turned out to be true. When we were just past the big island, there was a strike on the downrigger. It was my turn to go first. I thought I had a small fish. It just wasn't pulling hard. However, when the counter on my reel said 55 feet, the fish got mad about ascending towards the surface. It wasn't a small one. A few minutes later, Darrell slipped the net under a 24" , 5 pound Laker. About 30 minutes later the dowrigger was hit again. I grabbed the rod and I thought the fish was off. I reeled as fast as I could in case it was still on. I never felt a tug until I suddenly saw a small Laker about 20 feet from the boat. It didn't fight much at all. Darrell netted the 18" Laker easily.

 

We turned back upstream at the dam and about halfway to the big island, Darrell finally got to play a fish. The third strike on the downrigger yielded a 21" Laker. That was the last strike. We went on upstream and turned around and fished our way back towards Rat Branch. The solunar honeymoon was over and it was getting hot. We pulled in the lines about 1:30 p.m. and gave up.

 

We had lures out covering so many depths. I surprised all we could get was 5 strikes. We gradually put out more line on the divers to get them close to their maximum depths. We did the same thing with the plugs on leadcore. We changed plugs on the three plug lines but nothing suited the fish this day. It was a frustrating day. Where were the Rainbows?

 

I have a question about sonar. When I see what might be a baitball except that it's on the lake bottom, in the lower lake, is that probably a building left there when the lake was made...? Speaking of baitballs, I have not seen as many or really large ones lately.

WATAUGA 3 AUGUST 2017 with DARRELL 002.JPG

WATAUGA 3 AUGUST 2017 with DARRELL 004.JPG

WATAUGA 3 AUGUST 2017 with DARRELL 016.JPG

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Thanks for the detail Trout Girl and recent Friday Post.  3 or 4 nice lakers is still a good day.  Your not going to slam them every trip.

 

Im responding to your prior email about the bait.  Where are the baitfish??? 

 

Temperature is one key factor in the summer heat,  but alewives, especially juvenile alewives and other shad like gizzard can hang out on the surface in the warm water since that is where there food is if there is plenty of oxygen.  The most active trout don't mind going up into the warm water after them to get their food for short spells.  They will come up when they see a bait above them if they are super active. especialy rainbows.

 

Sometimes the trout  are really active eat really well one day and then kind of sulk the next day near the bottom.  

 

Here a couple pics I fish I got in July Lake Michigan. 

 

 

20170704_084811_001_resized.jpg

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Nice fish troutgirl, that's a big ole trout for these parts. Trophylakertaker, what species is that you have from Lake Michigan? I bet that was a battle 

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