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Would anybody believe this 40 inch river largemouth tried to eat an 8 inch Rooster Tail California Swimbait Special in 1 foot of water?


I know - you can hardly believe a fish like this would be in 1 foot of water! Anyway, you may be able to make out that its a standard 1/8oz Rooster Tail, which is somewhat shorter than 8 inches (as was the bass).

Here's a spiny rainbow grouper that also fell prey to the Rooster Tail. He wedged himself into the rocks just like his big saltwater brothers, but I had plenty of (ultralight) tackle to horse him out with...

I might have mis-identified the species. But all the recent talk about speckled and spotted pinfish at the coast is starting to get me confused:confused:...:p

I did take an hour out of the afternoon today for some rock-hopping below Falls Dam. Found out that my rock-hopping skills are greatly reduced by the cooler weather (not to mention age, weight and inactivity, but who's counting?). I did get rid of the December skunk, which takes the pressure off the rest of the month. Now I can concentrate on big(ger?) fish. Like dinks. Or even near-keepers.

They've got the flow reduced to a trickle at the dam. I was hopping my way down toward D-el's rock, but there's a lot more rock and a lot less water right now. I'd say I didn't find 18" of water in any of the pools down there among the rocks.

While I was there I saw that a group of shore fishermen had a 10lb-ish catfish on a stringer in the first pool below the spillway mouth. They'll be eating good tonight.

I had take-out:eek:.
 

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Nice job Jeff! Yeah, the water is so skinny there right now, makes it a challenge to find pools deep enough to hold decent fish. No shame in a little ultralight small-fish action though!

Probably the best fishing I had all year was that day that I was catching crappies one-after-another from those same rocks though....I'm hopeful that by Spring we'll have had enough rain so that the Army Corps of Engineers lets some water flow through there and the crappie return.
 

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Are those rocks on the parking lot side or on the other side of the river? If they are on the other side, is there a way to get to them without a watercraft of some sort? I'm also curious what type of catfish are in that area. I've been looking for some big cats in raleigh.
 

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Are those rocks on the parking lot side or on the other side of the river? If they are on the other side, is there a way to get to them without a watercraft of some sort? I'm also curious what type of catfish are in that area. I've been looking for some big cats in raleigh.
I'd call it the other side. I parked in the lot by the dam, walked downstream (still above Falls of Neuse bridge) and found some rocks to work my way across to high ground in the middle, under the bridge and across to the other side, mostly without getting wet. There were a couple guys and a dog that had made it up there from downstream by the canoe launch and managed to stay dry. Not sure how d-el got there last spring. My path won't be dry at any normal flow.

Not sure what kind of cats - I assume channel, but maybe blue. I was going to try and get a pic, but they had gone by the time I made it back up there. I've seen people catch one after the other of little ones from inside the spillway, and folks are there all the time so there must be some that pool. You might also try the Raleigh Beach area below the Milburnie bridge. I thought about going down there to see what it looks like in the low water, but didn't have time to run that far from home yesterday.
 

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The best way to fish that area of the river is with waders. You can start wading at the canoe launch, which is located on the opposite side of Falls of Neuse Rd as the dam, just south of the dam. From there, it is an easy wade upstream (at normal water flow). If you don't have waders, you are probably going to have to get a little wet to get to the spots that you want to fish.

Also of note, in that patch of woods poison ivy grows like its going out of style!
 
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