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Citation size: Fishing still good at Claytor Lake

By ROGER WILLIAMS, SWT Outdoors206283_531982796828103_661345506_n

Do not put your fishing gear away yet. A recent trip to Claytor Lake yielded a surprising catch.

My fishing buddy and I usually try to fish at least once a week before the weather gets too offensive.

We embarked from the Rockhouse Marina in Peak Creek Hollow on a foggy, foggy morning this week.

We had, as usual, brought along several dozen night crawlers for bait. We prefer worms because every fish in the lake will bite them. We eased down the creek towards the main body of the lake and started fishing.

I caught the first “keeper”, a three pound channel cat. My buddy always lets me catch the first fish big enough to keep. He is a very gracious companion.

He then hooked a big fish and fought the good fight till it was boated. Neither of us could believe the size of this fish. A citation sized “red eared bluegill” was put into the fish basket. It was the biggest bluegill I have ever seen.

The water seems to be cooling a little and the bite is coming back. At least it was this day.

To say my buddy was pleased is an understatement. He re-baited and as he tossed the tasty morsel back into the lake, stated that he would like to catch another one or two of these. He promptly hooked another large bluegill and hauled it to the boat to join its companion in the basket.

We fished for about two more hours and I finally caught one of these big bluegills.

Finishing up the day a mud catfish of about four pounds was caught and released.

Returning to the dock, we stopped in the marina and had the big bluegills weights certified in order to obtain citations for these huge red ears. Both of the fish my friend caught qualified for the citations. The one I caught was just an ounce or two short of the minimum weight requirement.

Paperwork was filled out for the citations to be obtained by mail.

What a beautiful day to be on the water.

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