Patience and Persistence Pays Off at BJR (2-1-19)

Feb 02 2019

Bob Scheidemann

Slot Fish

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Fellow members John Shepard and Ron Dupree and I arrived at BlackJack Ranch for “opening day” just after sunrise on Feb. 1st.

Conditions: overcast day in the 60’s with a slight breeze from the east. Tank full (water about 2” below bottom of the dock) with slightly stained water and visibility ~4ft. Water temp 51F in open water portions of the tank. No significant diminishment of the submergent weed growth, as reported in the fall of 2018. Weeds still rimming entire lake with the only truly open water in the south end of the tank by the dam wherever the water depth exceeded 13’. Weed growth to the surface over 50% of the lake with  fiberous green algae starting to form localized mats. An additional 30% of the tank has weeds 1-3’ below the surface and all of the brush piles are covered as well. Occasionally there are gaps to be found in the weed growth and that provided the bulk of the opportunity for our outing.

So, lets get to the good news:

Between the three of us we caught 42 LMB, with 10 culled. After 6 hours of trying to fish the open water or weed edge out of the jon boat (caught 15), we regrouped after a brief lunch at 1PM and the three of us fished the entire perimeter of the tank from the bank till dusk. Our afternoon strategy yielded almost double the number of fish (27) and consisted of casting weightless to slightly weighted 10” power worms (trig) to small openings in the weeds or just beyond the weed line (where possible mostly by the dam) and slowly working back to shore, as well as dragging a frog across the top of the weeds.  Each of us were fortunate to locate and land a 3.5 – 4lb bass during the afternoon session. The bass were stout and sported a dark green/black coloring.

No pattern was established in the morning with limited strikes coming on shallow sq bills, drop shot and Carolina set ups.

Over the course of the day, each of us tried punching the weed cover proximal to the dock, as well as the brush piles with no success.

On the way out of the ranch we had the great fortune to run into the Ranch Owner and after a nice conversation we thanked her for allowing us to fish this beautiful property!


Feb 02 2019

Tom Dillon


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Excellent and informative report, Bob. I'm glad you guys enjoyed your day and did well. I'm certainly surprised at the volume of weeds you reported.

Feb 02 2019

Steve Alexander


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I spoke with Bob and we are also surprised by the volume of vegetation in the lake. We were in great hopes that the lake would have had die back of weeds through December and January. Looks like we did not get that cold in Giddings. It is probably that the lake will only open for a couple of months and we will have to close it to excessive weed growth.

Feb 02 2019

Steve Carpenter


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Good report. I;m not far from that lake and it has not gotten really cold this year. Have some plants that normally go dormant during the winter that are still going strong. Was thinking about fishing giddings next week. think I will try Brushy creek instead. Supposed to be in the mid seventies for the next 4  days around here.