Float n Fly Report: Belews Creek and Philpott
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Thread: Float n Fly Report: Belews Creek and Philpott

  1. #1
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    Default Float n Fly Report: Belews Creek and Philpott

    Got out both days this weekend to do my absolute favorite kind of winter fishing. It was a mix of good and bad.

    Saturday- Belews Creek. Water was surprising dirty (or turning over) but found some cleaner water and they were biting the FnF pretty well. Caught 6 bass (up to 15"), one catfish, hooked two more, and had several pull-downs that never had the hook. I think they might have been bluegill. Overall it was a very fun afternoon. Water temp 55 degrees. Clarity was about 4.5 feet which is low for the lake.

    Sunday- Philpott (near Martinsville, VA). I fished this lake once last year and I wanted to try it again. Made the trip with my wife and while a beautiful lake and a nice day the fishing was awful. It was totally dead out there. No birds, squirrels, deer, or any other kind of wildlife out. Was eerie quiet. Bait was generally pegged on the bottom. Never had a bite in 5 hours. I think it may be turning over an that generally puts all the fish deep but I still feel like I should have gotten a few bites. I haven't given up on the lake but I wish I had gone back to Belews creek again. Water was 55-56 degrees. Didn't check clarity but it was well over 6 feet. Water had some haze to it which made me think it might be turning over. One final tidbit, they normally charge a launch fee but they had covered the drop box so it was free.

    Tight lines,
    Andrew

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  3. #2
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    I use to live by Philpott Lake. The usually super clear water makes it a tough place to fish for many anglers, including me. Go back in the spring when the water temps hit 50 degrees & above for better odds. There are some nice fish in that lake for sure.

  4. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by sped66 View Post
    I use to live by Philpott Lake. The usually super clear water makes it a tough place to fish for many anglers, including me. Go back in the spring when the water temps hit 50 degrees & above for better odds. There are some nice fish in that lake for sure.
    Glad to hear there are fish in the lake, I was wondering after the other day. I actually like the deep clear water. It is the kind of conditions that the float and fly should be perfect for cause the fish will tend to suspend in that kind of water and the technique floats that little jig right in their face.
    Tight lines,
    Andrew

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  6. #4
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    Thanks for the reports, Andrew. I like seeing reports from some of my old stomping grounds that I miss so much, so I appreciate the posts!

    We've seen Belews get more stained at times depending mainly on rainfall (that day we caught all those bass in the back of that pocket with the modified swim jigs was a good example), but I don't think I've ever seen the lake turn over like some lakes do during seasonal changes. I had always attributed that to the fact that a significant portion of the central part of the lake sees a certain degree of 'current' from the circular flow created by the discharge on one side and the intake on the other side. I think it keeps the lake too 'stirred' to really stratify and then turn over.

    But God knows Belews can act squirrelly at times, that's for certain.
    - Sam
    "Things are only impossible until they're not!"

  7. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by SurfRider View Post
    Thanks for the reports, Andrew. I like seeing reports from some of my old stomping grounds that I miss so much, so I appreciate the posts!

    We've seen Belews get more stained at times depending mainly on rainfall (that day we caught all those bass in the back of that pocket with the modified swim jigs was a good example), but I don't think I've ever seen the lake turn over like some lakes do during seasonal changes. I had always attributed that to the fact that a significant portion of the central part of the lake sees a certain degree of 'current' from the circular flow created by the discharge on one side and the intake on the other side. I think it keeps the lake too 'stirred' to really stratify and then turn over.

    But God knows Belews can act squirrelly at times, that's for certain.
    You might be right. It could be that it is just stained from mud coming in. The lake isn't nearly as warm as it used to be since the power plant switched to natural gas. It is well down in the 50's and that cold muddy water probably doesn't sink as quickly as it used to when the lake was 60 degrees. If it gets stained it might completely change the way if fishes.

    I went again on 12/22. Caught 6 again (5 spots and a LM) with the biggest about 14". Hooked 2 more. I fished longer and the action was slower. Water was down to 52-53 and it was only 56-57 at the hot hole. Clarity about the same as last time 4.5-5 feet. I did see a couple fish bust on top but it wasn't much.

    For any of you that do fish the FnF I got about every kind of bite this trip. Got pull downs, lift bites, lift then pull down, and the look away then look back and the bobber is gone.
    sped66, and SurfRider like this.

    Tight lines,
    Andrew

  8. #6
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    I keep saying I'm going to try the Float n Fly for speckled trout in the winter here, when they suspend in the holes and bends in the river mouth creeks, but I haven't followed through on it yet.
    - Sam
    "Things are only impossible until they're not!"

  9. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by SurfRider View Post
    I keep saying I'm going to try the Float n Fly for speckled trout in the winter here, when they suspend in the holes and bends in the river mouth creeks, but I haven't followed through on it yet.
    You should, I'd just rig a slip bobber and not try and fool with the big fairy wand. Tip a jig with some gulp and I bet you can catch them pretty good. Watching that bobber drop is addictive. The FnF is my winter spinnerbait. If I can get them to bite it I won't put it down.
    Tight lines,
    Andrew

  10. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bleedingblue View Post
    You should, I'd just rig a slip bobber and not try and fool with the big fairy wand. Tip a jig with some gulp and I bet you can catch them pretty good. Watching that bobber drop is addictive. The FnF is my winter spinnerbait. If I can get them to bite it I won't put it down.
    Yes, this I know... and every time we've fished together during winter, I start to lose faith and pick up a shakey head or jerkbait, you catch one and make me wish I'd stuck with it.

    So far it hasn't stayed cold enough consistently enough to get those specks stacked up in the creeks yet, but I suspect January might deliver. I have my eye on offshore flounder if the north wind ever lets me get out there, but maybe I'll get a chance to try it. Part of my problem is I get distracted by everything else... February rolls in and I'm already eyeing sheepshead, then March comes and I am chasing triggerfish (possibly my 2nd favorite eating fish after tripletail), and so on and on.

    Still miss my reservoir bass fishing, though!
    - Sam
    "Things are only impossible until they're not!"

  11. #9
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    SurfRider you sound like you're living my life about 5-10 years ahead of me

    All my life my objective has been "live on the water".

    In Georgia we had a small pond
    In Minnesota we lived directly on the upper Mississippi River
    Then we made it down to NC and got a place on Belews.....and you've helped me tremendously with advice on this forum about Belews...

    And I always said my next step is to live on saltwater where I could be catching speckled trout and stripers .....so like I said, you're ahead of me



    Anyways - BleedingBlue, I know you've done this before but can you explain the float & fly again?

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