Mack26

Bass on the Rocks

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Fished the last hour of the incoming and then the drop in a SoCo location, and had a first tonight. I had a slow pick of small fish as the tide ebbed, and then the bite died for about an hour after it started to drop. I couldn’t find anything in the bag to entice them to start biting again, and was getting ready to call it, and head to another location, when something caught my eye. The area is a boulder field, with a pretty quick drop off on one side. The wind, and the current was creating a sweep, and leaving a nice frothy whitewater off the edge. The water was weedy, but fishable and I was picking up the smaller fish about 15-20 yds out into the whitewater on my white bucktail. When the bite died, I was rotating through a few plugs like I said, and happened to have an SP minnow on when, on one of my casts, as it drew in close to my rock, I felt it snag, except it wasn’t snagged, I hooked up. The fish was considerably larger, maybe 24-26”, than the fish I had been catching, and I was happy to have it. As I i was unhooking the fish, I quickly scanned the area in which it had come from, just as a fresh wave was receding. I was shocked at what I saw. There were two fish, about the same size I was unhooking, squirming, and slithering amongst the rocks, with absolutely no water on their backs! They looked like Salmon sliding upriver, like they do when they are trying to make it to the next pool, but don’t have enough water. It was the craziest thing i’ve ever seen. They were feeding that way! Now i’ve seen bass in tight to the rocks, right on the edge, but these bass were almost, no they were, out of the water! I have no idea what they were feeding on, as I didn’t see anything in the dark, and didn’t want to put a light on the water. I started casting my SP right into the rocks, and these fish would hit it as it came banging out of the rocks, like you would when you draw it up to make your next cast! They were slashing at it as it came out of the water! I stopped fishing, and started watching the waves, as the fish were hooked and the fight was over in about 10-15 seconds. I didn’t like the way they were thrashing in the rocks as I brought them in, so I stopped, and just watched. It was unreal, the amount of fish that were literally under my feet. I had no idea they were even there, until that hit. I’ve never in all my years fishing, seen stripers that far out of water feeding. I watched wave after wave recede, and almost every time, there was a fish wriggling around and flapping till it made it back to water. It was one of the coolest things i’ve ever seen while fishing.

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That is a crazy story.

Thank you fir sharing.

Just when you think you understand what’s going on, something outta the blue....

I don’t know your location, and this is just a guess, could they have been corralling mullet?

JD

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It was incredible. I have never seen anything like it. I never saw any bait, and i was looking. The surf was charged up a bit, so there was constant wave action that was making whitewater in the rocks at my feet. It wasn’t until the water started to recede back away from the edge that it became visible. I’m sure they were feeding right under me for a while, but they weren’t breaking the surface. Even after i realized what was happening, you would have to look for them. I’m positive they knew what they were doing, as they were feeding in the open air with no water on them! On one of my casts, just before i stopped trying to catch them, my plug was banging off the rocks, and a fish came out of the last of the wave and “beached” itself and took a swipe at the plug! Damndest thing i ever seen. I only wish it was first light so i might have been able to catch it on video.

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18 mins ago, l.i.fish.in.vt said:

I have seen this happenon more than one occasion in the area I fish,and not just small fish.just about every time they were feeding on sandeels.

That was my first thought too, and i was actually at one point throwing a 24/7 needle and teaser, with no love. I honestly believe they were in so tight, they would have never seen it.

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34 mins ago, Lou T said:

Good read, glad you got to witness it...;)

Thanks Lou! Once in a lifetime maybe? lifishinvt said he has have seen it before, i sure would love to see it again. Have never seen it before in all my years fishing.

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I have witnessed Bass damn near beaching themselves on quite a few occasions for my offering and bait. The trough right next to the beach, is always worth fishing. Specially on the fall run at night. Sod banks at night, are another great place for close encounters.

 

Never seen them swimming through the rocks, like a Salmon going upstream, but I guess if the food was there, it's the same.

 

Tight lines...

Lou

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Cool story. The majority of my fishing is spent plugging from boulders & ledges. I have not seen what you described which is like an ambush bait event from ledge shallows but definitely plausible. Perhaps more of a night event. I could well imagine the wave receding over flat ledge in deep water leaving several inches of water that could temporarily expose the fins.  I have been surprised quite a few times when a fish will hit just as I'm about to lift my plug out of the water from a high perch. That's one reason I leave my drag a bit looser. Drag setting becomes a compromise on what I'm feeling that day. When a bigger fish hits at the last second in the highly oxygenated white water its game on. The drag needs to be tight enough for a hook set but loose enough for the first run. Then a quick tightening to control the fish around structure. Gotta love it ! 

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44 mins ago, Livliner said:

Cool story. The majority of my fishing is spent plugging from boulders & ledges. I have not seen what you described which is like an ambush bait event from ledge shallows but definitely plausible. Perhaps more of a night event. I could well imagine the wave receding over flat ledge in deep water leaving several inches of water that could temporarily expose the fins.  I have been surprised quite a few times when a fish will hit just as I'm about to lift my plug out of the water from a high perch. That's one reason I leave my drag a bit looser. Drag setting becomes a compromise on what I'm feeling that day. When a bigger fish hits at the last second in the highly oxygenated white water its game on. The drag needs to be tight enough for a hook set but loose enough for the first run. Then a quick tightening to control the fish around structure. Gotta love it ! 

Great point Livliner :th:

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