REELFOOT LAKE DAY 2   1 comment

The day dawns hot and humid and after breakfast Billy Blakely and I mount up and troll out of the marina at Blue Bank Resort.  The early morning temperature does nothing to cool the 85-degree water.  The plan is to catch some crappie and time permitting some catfish.

These hot summer days are not really conducive to good fishing but we give it a try.  The action is slow and I take the opportunity to pick Billy’s brain on fishing ReelfootLake.  He has been guiding there for some 30 years having begun at the ripe old age of 9.  A well known crappie fishing expert, Billy has both a local and national reputation.  With tournament wins, seminars, and video appearances, Billy has taught far more crappie anglers than just those that he guides.  He also provides education to youngsters as well.

Getting to one of Billy’s spots proves a bit adventurous.  The sound of the outboard motor causes Asian carp to fly into the air.  One lands in the boat with us while another bounces off my arm.  Several hit the sides of the boat.  The fish in the boat manages to get fish slim all over my camera bag as well as most of the passenger area.  Once he is finally subdued, he goes back in the water and we continue on our way.

ReelfootLake is famous for the stumps and lay-downs that found almost everywhere.  The particular area we are fishing contains many stumps.  Billy chooses to fish spider-rig fashion.  He mounts a long steel rack across the front of the boat.  The rack has some 12 rod holders but we only use eight 12-foot BnM poles.  The reels have 8-pound test line leading to a double-hook crappie rig.  One hook is on the very end of the line while the second hook attaches to a monofilament leader about two feet above.  The leader is about 18-inches in length.

Each pole holds the line to different depths.  As one or more depths produce fish, the other lines are adjusted to that depth.  Live minnows hooked through the eyes as bait.

I am impressed with the way Billy maneuvers the boat so as to allow the lines to skillfully skirt the stumps.  With a chop on the water, Billy concentrates on the upwind side of the stumps but also fishes all around the area.

As the fish action begins to slack off and we begin to get roasted, we move to some shaded areas long the shoreline.


One response to “REELFOOT LAKE DAY 2

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  1. Billy is a heck-of-an angler and guide. Have fun dude!

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