Photos of Clinton Iowa
Photos of Clinton Iowa
Walleye Basics – when it doubt, use a jig. Drop mic and walk away.
But you can catch Walleye how ever you want, cast jigs or crankbaits, troll jigs or crankbaits. Troll bottom bouncers with floater rigs. Troll using bottom bouncers and rapala minnow type crankbaits; troll using heavy jigs instead of the bottom bouncer. What ever you like doing, you can catch fish. You can use slip bobbers and live bait.
Finding them is the hard part, but once you find feeding fish, they will bite about anything, depending on the time of year and conditions. Fish are in different areas, different structures, it’s always changing. A lot of times guys never do figure out where they go, they just disappear or just won’t feed. Sometimes they feed at night, or in the evening, or midday in the hot sun. Sometimes they like wingdams, sometimes they like holes, or riprap, or log jams. Sometimes they want current, sometimes they don’t. Sometimes they’re shallow, sometimes not, sometimes both and inbetween. Sometimes fish go into the lakes and gravel pits, or stay in the fast current of high water. They are where they are.
I have caught big walleye in 12″ of water, and 10 minutes later caught another big fish in 15′. It is so complicated, I can’t keep track of them and I have been fishing for walleye for 30 years or more. The river is always changing, rising dropping, dirty or clean. When I go fishing, I don’t know where to go, I have to get a pattern going. It depends on where the bait fish are, the river conditions, the weather, the time of year and time of day. Anymore I think I would rather fish for bass or something else, it’s a lot easier. But you can get patterns going and in the same conditions, you can go back and catch fish there yeat after year. You can catch fish on what ever you like using. Sometimes I keep switching patterns. My arms get tired from trolling heaving jigs so I cast for a while, or go with a light jig. I get more enjoyment out of getting a pattern going than catching fish. Sometimes I know where fish are and I will still go looking. I throw all my fish back anyway, I’m not a meat hunter or bite chaser.
I think the most over looked places where walleye hide is in log jams. Not just logjams, but in deep water, really hard to fish. They sit there and eat at will, and know when a boat comes and don’t need to jump on a lure. So no one finds them. And if someone did, people would see them and everyone would be fishing deep log jams. Most of the year fishing is terrible and people are desperate.
Up in Dubuque people fish different, they troll riprap and ledges. These are overlooked down river where everyone fishes wingdams. Not all riprap is good, up there it’s within a few miles of the dam, then the further down river you go the less fish you catch. Further up river they don’t have many wingdams and the fish are in the deep sloughs and cuts.
I don’t like talking about fishing, it’s all too complicated to explain. To me what’s impostant is just getting out and having fun. Anymore I just go looking for photos.
I had been seeing a couple Osprey around, there was teal starting to migrate through, a few Eagles around and a few Mink I had been seeing earlier in the year. So I went out on my combo fishing and taking photos trip. I wasn’t catching many fish, but I could catch a few small Bass to keep me busy while I watched for birds. I put in at the pocket, would troll my way out and then run around to a few backwater areas.
As I was heading out I noticed large masses of weeds floating in the channel so I put the trolling motor in, grabbed my camera and figured I would troll my way out to the main river channel. There was duck hunters out, but they usually stay away from boat ramps and places where people take walks and people do fish in the area. I didn’t go far and heard a shot, a loud shot, like someone was shooting in my direction to let me know they were hunting in the area. I expected pellets to fall around me, but didn’t see any. My little dog was scared to death and hid in the corner and didn’t want to go fishing for a few days. I looked around and noticed guys standing in the weeds, hunting teal about 75 yards away.
I went ahead and trolled on out, but stuck around the area looking for the Osprey. I heard those guys do a lot of shooting. Ten shots at a time, then a little later ten more shots, then more and more and they were shooting all morning and into the afternoon. I have never heard so much shooting. No one else was doing much shooting and there was a lot of hunters out. I came back to the point area and was watching an osprey there. The hunters were packing it up. There was four of them. They didn’t have a dog. They had a boat but didn’t use it to hunt from. I wondered if they had been using lead shot, which is cheaper, to be shooting so much. Without a dog they couldn’t have been going after cripples, only the ones within walking distance in the 2′ of water, 12″ of mud and thick weeds.
I talked to someone at the ramp a couple days later and he said he called the game warden, who said they checked out ok. They claimed they got every duck they shot. I didn’t see them again.
Two weeks later I saw FWS come and pick an Eagle up within about 100 yards of that area. I called and asked about it. I see eagles get caught in the water and have to flap their way back to shore and wondered why they picked it up so quick. I found out it was very sick. It had lead poisoning. All it takes is one pellet and it can kill them. They eat a lot of ducks, the cripples that get away from hunters. The Eagle died soon after.
The reason the Teal were in that area was because there are a lot of people there and it was a safe zone. People walk, bike, drive through, take photos, fish and use the boat ramp. It was also out of the wind, so when they did shoot, it really sounded loud. I have seen people hunt right next to the walking path and where barges go through. There are so many hunters anymore, it’s hard to find places to fish without running into hunters.
Cooper’s Hawk at my Window. Starling crashes into window, all kinds of thrashing going on so I look up and a cooper’s hawk is trying to catch it in between all the branches and feeders I have up and them pins it to the window and takes off with it. It took a long time to kill, jumping up and down driving its talons in and out. I was going to get video but that would be kind of gross, even if it was a starling.
Pileated Woodpeckers Sparring with Sharpshinned Hawk
1 Minding my own business watching songbirds
2. Here comes trouble, a Pileated Woodpecker with his parents hanging around
3. Better get them talons ready
4. He’s asking for it
5 ready, set…
7 I’m coming
8 Dang, missed, but there’s another one
9 and here comes another one
11 Just act like nothing is going on
12 eye contact
13 how come he’s not running away?
14 I will eat you
15 Playing chicken
16 giving up
17 chase is on
18 out maneuvered
19 wew, that was close
20 maybe I should tease him some more
21 better watch out buddy
22 getting closer
23 showing off
25 watching you
26 There’s another one
27 yep, our whole family is here
28 being sneaky
29 being watched
30 uh oh…
31 oh crap
32 quick move
34 ya I have a weapon too
35 next time buddy