BAY VILLAGE, OH – Having a day available to fish is not an opportunity to pass up, even if the weather is less than ideal. The forecast was just fair enough to make me feel comfortable hitting Lake Erie from the kayak, albeit not heading too far out. Due to the weather being suspect, I decided to launch out of Huntington Beach (link here), part of the Cleveland Metroparks, a destination I have used a handful of times the past few years.
I started the day drifting worm harnesses on bottom bouncers and drop shotting artificial tubes. My hope (better stated as my dream) was to catch Walleye and Smallmouth Bass. Needless to say, neither happened. I switched a few times before settling on attempting to troll crankbaits while paddling. This turned out to be a great decision as the rest of the day I was routinely catching White Bass. The size of the fish were good too, most falling between 12 to 14 inches.
While I don’t look happy in the photo, I was thrilled. The serious face had more to do with conditions and trying to get the fish and equipment to cooperate for a picture. Usually, my Lake Erie kayak fishing is tons of Round Gobies and a few Sheephead. Throw in an occasional Channel Catfish and that is about all I’ve done. To pick up a different species, and in good numbers and size, was fun and felt like an accomplishment. Looking at the weather and how I was having success, I couldn’t help but think of the movie Caddyshack. I just hoped it didn’t end with me getting struck by lightning. This did cause me to come off the water earlier than I would’ve liked.
No complaints about the day, I enjoyed it far more than a beautiful day without catching fish. Each time out I am trying new techniques and strategies, and my confidence is building as I am making more catches. I also continue to do better with setting up the kayak for each trip with efficient packing and having the right items within reach while on it. Right down to my loading and unloading of the yak, things seem vastly improved. I can’t wait to get back out!