Ohio adventure

My business travels found me in Ohio this week.  In my suitcase I found my telescopic Soyokaze 20SR rod and coincidentally on my GPS were way points of stream crossings near to my planned hotel stays.  After work I used the several hours of daylight to explore these creeks with my micro gear, hoping to encounter a few species not found in my more southern haunts.  I was not disappointed.

The first evening I walked up to a small creek full of spawning Silver Redhorse, actively splashing in the riffles.  These fish were large, much to large for my equipment!  After watching this spectacle for a while I realized I better search for some micros before the sun set.   Not seeing any other obvious fish, I decided to rig up with a #6 hook and some earthworm to search for any sunfish that may be hiding in the deep, as the water had a bit of color to it.  Imagine my surprise when midway through my second drift I had a significant strike.  Surprise soon turned to concern, then fear, as I saw and felt the torture my extremely light gear was experiencing.   I had all I could do to keep the rod angles such that the majority of the force was on the 6 feet of 3 pound test line and not the fragile 6 feet of rod.  Line is easy to replace, rod not!  This Channel Catfish (Ictalurus punctatus) is certainly the largest fish I’ve caught, and care to catch, with this light gear.  After the photo he was safely returned to the water to grow up.

After this event I noticed a small flash in about 18 inches of water so I switched to my micro setup.  That evening and the following evening I also caught and released five different species of micros to add to my lifelist.

Spotfin Shiner (Cyprinella spiloptera) – Salt Creek near Zanesville OH

Bluntnose Minnow (Pimephales notatus) – Salt Creek near Zanesville OH

Hornyhead Chub (Nocomis biguttatus) – Auglaize River near Lima OH

Creek Chub (Semotilus atromaculatus) – Auglaize River near Lima OH

Striped Shiner (Luxilus chrysocephalus) – Auglaize River near Lima OH

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2 thoughts on “Ohio adventure

    • With the very small micros, their mouths are generally so small that most are lip hooked. Once in a while one will take the worm chunk deeper, but then they usually are just “choking” on it and it comes right out with out problem. The small Japanese hooks that I am using have such a small “bite” that even on larger fish that take it deeper, it isn’t a problem getting the hook dislodged. I will admit to using a fine stalk of grass as a tool to assist now and again. I plan to make a micro hook removing tool one of these days! My fish are out of the water for just a short time with minimal handling that mortality has not been an issue I’ve observed upon release. They immediately scurry away!

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