Don’t Let Bad Weather Prevent a Fishing Adventure
We’ve all been there, counting down the days until the next trip you’ve been planning for months. Gear loaded, licenses bought and campsite reserved, anxiously anticipating pulling up to the boat ramp and setting eyes on one of your favorite fisheries. Growing up in Nebraska fishing small lakes and reservoirs, there wasn’t anything Mother Nature could do to stop that trip from happening. In the past years, I’ve learned she calls the shots when it comes to river fishing back East.
I had just finished up a tournament on Guntersville, and had planned for two extra days fun fishing on the Collins River in Tennessee afterwards. For the past two years, I’ve had the pleasure of landing multiple trophy musky on the Collins, so I was itching to get back in that area. However, a big front loomed ominously overhead and unleashed all its fury in the night.
We spent the first few hours of the morning scouring boat ramps and possible places to launch, only to discover they were completely blown out, and the slow, green waters of the Collins had turned into a raging mess of mud and debris.
It would have been easy to head back to camp, escape the cold and relax after a long week of pre fishing and travel, but some of us just aren’t wired like that. Having an excuse to explore new water in TN, and two days to do so, we loaded up and drove another two hours north to Dale Hollow, to chase a rumored pre spawn smallmouth bite.
The aqua green, tranquil waters informed me that Dale Hollow weathered the storm much better than the surrounding creeks and rivers. Giant bluffs and large bays lined with secondary points and overhangs was almost enough to put musky fishing at the back of my mind.
I made my way around the first point, casted a big jig towards the bank, slowly working it back into 30FOW. After a few casts, I watched my line shoot out, rod load up and I was able to set the hook on a giant Dale Hollow bronzeback. This pattern continued through the day, each fish a spectacle.
Sure, it wasn’t what I was expecting to do today. I had planned the entire trip around the moon phases, prime musky time and I was banking on that river. I was initially discouraged but I was reminded that but being able to adapt and roll with the punches allowed me to experience a world renowned fishery, proving that even plan B beats sitting indoors.