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Too Hot To Go Fishing? Never!

Dateline 6/26/00

Its HOT! It always is in my part of the world this time of year. Although I am tempted to sit in the house under an air conditioner all the time, the urge to go fishing is stronger. There are several ways to beat the heat while fishing, and sometimes you can even catch fish doing them.

Night fishing has always been a favorite way to beat the heat during the summers for me. For years when I taught school and didn't have to work during the summers, I would go to Clark's Hill for a week at the time and turn my schedule around.

About 3 or 4 times each year I would arrive at the lake late on Monday afternoon, unload, put the boat in the water and start fishing just before dark. After fishing all night and being awake for over 24 hours it was easy to come in when the sun got over the trees, take a shower and go to bed. I would sleep until late afternoon and then get up and go fishing for another night.

I often caught nice bass between 7:00 pm and pitch dark, around 9:45, on a buzz bait. I usually caught more keeper bass on a worm after dark. I never could figure how they found those worms in the dark, but they did.

Fishing for crappie, white bass and hybrids under a bridge was also fun. We always made a night of it by getting to our favorite spot early, tying the boat up, putting rods baited with minnows over the side and getting comfortable. When it got dark we would fire up the lanterns and hope to draw the bigger fish in. Sometimes you could see the fish in the water under your light, eating natural minnows and ignoring the one on your hook.

At times I might even go gigging carp and frogs. Although technically not fishing, it involved boats, water, quarry and excitement. I spent many enjoyable nights stalking the shallows with a spotlight, looking for something to stick.

Another favorite night fishing trip for me is very simple. You find a nice clean bank near deep water, build a small fire, put out a couple of rods baited with worms or liver and wait on a catfish to hit. Carry along a lounge chair and some good cold drinks and you can really relax while watching your rods. I am not real sure why I always build a fire - it certainly isn't for the warmth - but I just have to have one while fishing like this.

Its a lot cooler if you are in the water while fishing. I made that astounding scientific discovery when very young. After riding my bike to local farm ponds I would be really hot and it was natural to want to go swimming. But I also wanted to start fishing right away. So I did both. I would wade out at least chest deep and cast for bass. I was my own depth finder back in those days.

Farm ponds get warm this time of year, especially the top six feet or so of water, and you can really feel the cool springs and flows of water when you are in it. After moving to Griffin I found the Flint River to be a great place to cool off and catch bass. It is not as easy to get into the river now, but there are spots you can get in and wade the shoals while catching fish.

If fishing from a boat, it helps to dip your cap, or shirt, or whole body in the water every once in a while. It is amazing how much a wet cap can cool you off. If you wet a long sleeve shirt it will keep you from getting blistered and keep you cool. Also riding around to create a breeze helps. If you have a fast bass boat, a wet shirt at sixty miles per hour can really feel cool.

Get out of your cool house and go fishing. I think I will sleep all day today, though!

How do youi beat the heat? Tell me about it. Do you have any comments to offer? You can also post information about it for others on my message board - you must register to post but can read the board as a guest. Also, if you have thoughts you want to share about this topic, let me know about it at fishing@aboutguide.com. for a "Fishtale" . Tell others what you like.

ONE YEAR AGO THIS WEEK - 06/28/99 - Online Catfish
From baits to how to cook them, find catfish info on the net.

TWO YEARS AGO THIS WEEK - 06/29/98- Fish Feeding Schedules
Do fish feed at set times that you can pattern and take advantage of? A couple of times it has worked for me.

THREE YEARS AGO THIS WEEK! - 06/30/97 - Holiday Escape - How to Beat the Crowds
Lakes are crowded for the July 4th week. You can still fish in peace if you work at it. Try these ways to get away from it all.

Check out Coming Next Week - Next week's column topic, contest prize and new additions to the resources lists.

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