April Fishing Update
Written by Eric Ashley - Published on April 8, 2022
Hello from Kentucky Lake!
April has finally made it here, and hopefully warmer temperatures are soon to arrive.
April 1 officially kicked off my guide season. I fished several days in March, chasing the ever-elusive Crappie on the north end of the lakes. I have found the bite to be tough to nonexistent. One look at local boat ramps and fish cleaning stations makes me believe I am not the only one to have experienced this.
Bays that normally would have many boats in them, are almost empty, with less than a handful of boats trying to crappie fish. Fish cleaning stations that used to have folks waiting in line for a spot to clean, have been empty. Resorts that cater to fisherman, have been empty as well.
Don’t get the wrong idea, I am not saying that you can’t catch Crappie. What I am saying is that it continues to be a struggle OUT OF MY BOAT, and I am talking about MY BOAT ONLY. There are a lot of good Crappie guides on these lakes, that fish many different techniques, and they may be catching the heck out of them. OUT OF MY BOAT, this hasn’t been the case.
I have seen some good catches and heard of a few more. It seems, as of late, the bite has improved some, but catching some on one day doesn’t necessarily mean they are going to be on fire the next day. This can make for some tough trips, when you’re trying to show people a good time.
I understand it is fishing, but people pay me good money to put them on fish. I am not confident that I can please folks that are crappie purists. I have encouraged everyone who wants to Crappie fish, to fish further south, where the Crappie bite has been more consistent. This is hard on my pocketbook, but I want people to catch fish when they are here. If they do, they are more apt to come back.
I would rather send them to someone I think who will be able to consistently catch fish, than just tell them what they want to hear just to get their business. I don’t have to do this job to make a living, I do this job because I love showing people a good time. This business is a trial by fire every time you have a first-time customer.
As a general rule, they don’t come back if they don’t catch fish. Sometimes lake conditions aren’t conducive to good fishing and folks understand. Promising rainbows and unicorns, and not being able to deliver will leave a sour taste in their mouths, which is something I don’t want. That is why I don’t sugarcoat things and try to educate those folks about what I can offer before they ever get on my boat. I have had several folks who were very appreciative of my honesty and have told me they will come back and fish with me because of it. I said all of that to say this:
OUT OF MY BOAT, I have struggled to catch Crappie and I prefer to try to find something else to catch. I will be happy to take folks Crappie fishing if that’s all they want to catch. I will also bust my hump to provide them with the best opportunity to do that. With each day being different, one never knows what day you may manage a heck of a mess of Crappie.
My first trips of the year have found me chasing yellow bass, bluegill, and catfish. I have managed to be able to provide plenty of action for my clients. I have had, what I consider to be, very good catches. I realize that folks want to eat Crappie, but yellow bass, bluegill, and catfish aren't something to turn your nose up at.
I know a lot of folks who love to eat bluegill, but I personally believe that a yellow bass is just as good or better. Blue cats and flathead cats make for some mighty fine table fare, too. When any of these fish are caught on light tackle, it makes for a ferocious fight. Generally, the yellow bass and bluegill provide lots of action for folks.
Not having to wait very long between bites keeps everyone interested and hopefully busy catching fish. This kind of action is good for young kids, as well as those who haven’t fished much and seasoned fisherman alike. Lots of bites, lots of action, and mighty fine table fare, makes for a heck of a combination which is why I constantly keep looking for new places to find them.
I want people to catch fish when they fish with me, and I will do all I can do to make sure that happens. Catching fish makes for a good time and that’s what I want people to do ON MY BOAT. If I can do that with Crappie I will, but I feel like I have a much better chance with these fish. I understand some folks may not be interested in doing this, but this is what I feel I can provide the most action with. If this is something that piques your interest, then shoot me a text or give me a call.
I am upfront and honest with everyone about what I can provide OUT OF MY BOAT. I can’t promise the motherload of fish every day, but I can promise that I will be prepared, have a plan, and tackle in good working order to provide you with the best fishing experience I can provide. I feel that is the least I can do for folks who choose to spend their money with me.
You can check out my pictures of recent catches on Facebook to see if what I’m catching interest you. If it does, then look me up and we will get on the water. I have several available dates for anyone interested. If it doesn’t interest you, I will be happy to point you in the direction of other reputable guides who can satisfy your needs.
Again, I just want you to catch fish and have a good time while you’re here in the area.
Until my next report, thank you for your time.