Winter Blues

When I mention the winter blues, I am not talking about the fish. I am talking about the sadness of winter time. Many catfishermen love fishing in the cold winter months. They will tell you that it is the best time of the year to catch a real monster. Personally, I would much rather take my chances on a hot steamy day in August. Once the air temps drop below 40 degrees, fishing stops being fun to me. I just do not like cold weather.

Usually winters here in East Tennessee aren't that bad. We may have some really cold days here and there throughout the winter months but it usually doesn't last very long. This year has been an exception. Last week was bitterly cold. It didn't get above freezing for most of the week. We got a slight reprieve the last couple days as the temps climbed back up to 60 degrees. I took advantage and hit the water on Wednesday.
As you can probably tell from the picture, I wasn't very busy reeling in fish. I actually didn't get a bite all afternoon. Fort Loudon had a massive shad kill from the cold last week. There were hundreds of birds back in the creek where I was fishing just feasting on all the dead shad. I am sure the catfish were back in there feeding on them too.

Fishing gets a lot harder right after a shad kill. It is tough to temp Mr. Whiskers into taking your bait when he has an unlimited buffet all around him. A shad kill of this magnitude will pay big dividends in the coming months though. Those fish will be putting on a lot of weight from gorging themselves on all the dead shad. Less bait fish in the water should also improve the odds of catching fish throughout the spring and summer months as well.

I will be looking forward to those fun days ahead. With the temps dropping back to the 30's and snow in the forecast, my fishing is on hold for now. Best of luck to all of you who will brave the arctic conditions this week. I will be admiring your fish pics with envy and jealousy from the comfort of my house.

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