Making sense of this erratic weather

Jan. 25, 2014 @ 11:55 PM

After killing the squirrel that ran out of the first nest I shook last weekend it was looking like I might be able to get a few more. Then I spent four hours and walked a few miles without so much as a glimpse of another one.

Luckily I got one and it will make a good meal later this year while I am off camping somewhere. I plan on boiling it for a while to make it tender, then flour and fry it up served with a little gravy and rice. A meal fit for a king (a small king that’s not very hungry).

If only I could cook one as good as my grandmothers did.

What a weather roller coaster it’s been for the last month or so.

After spending 10 days in Florida fishing in a T-shirt and sandals, I returned to North Carolina to find lows of 5 degrees and frozen water pipes.

Then last Monday it was in the low 60s. Now here we are again with daytime highs that don’t even get close to breaking the freezing mark. It’s a wonder we don’t all have the walking pneumonia. Matter of fact I do have a pretty bad chest cold.

Let’s all make sure we don’t complain when the temperatures break 100 later this year. At least it’s easy to go for a swim to cool off in the summertime.

The bass were biting well on Lake Gaston last Sunday and Monday during the relative heat wave that came through. Most were caught on a blade bait jigged off the bottom in around 22 feet of water in spots where the old creek channel came close to the shoreline.

I also caught one that weighed just shy of 6 pounds on a shad-colored deep-diving jerk bait in the same area. That little bit of a warming trend had the big bass pulling up from the depths looking for an easy meal in the warmer water.

That fish hit as I was talking to a gentleman who was burning leaves in his lake-side yard, and he helped me out by taking a few photos.


Kerr Lake fishing report – Folks are catching big blue cats and there are around a hundred anglers fishing in a catfish tournament there this weekend in these freezing conditions. I hope to have a picture of the winners for next week’s column.
Largemouth remain huddled up in tight schools at about 20 to 25 feet deep, and a blade bait or jigging spoon will provide some great catches.

Upcoming area tournaments – No bass tournaments for a couple of more weeks. My first event of 2014 is a small tournament on Shearon Harris Lake in a couple of weeks.

Next week’s report – Report from the annual Ice bowl catfish tournament on Kerr Lake.

Tip of the week — Make sure you tune your jerk bait to run straight just like you would a crankbait. The action will be better and they will get a lot deeper if you bend the eye away from the side they are turning if they go sideways when reeled in quickly.

Contact the writer by email at waltbowen@yahoo.com, on Facebook under Walt Bowen, and on Twitter at @WaltBowen.