I was fishing with a Z-Man Micro Finesse Jig with a TRD trailer in Drew’s Craw coloring. I was fishing with a prototypical Finesse setup — I had spooled some orange Sufix 10-pound braided line onto an old Shakespeare spinning reel and then added about 13 feet of 8-pound Spiderwire fluorocarbon leader. The reel was attached to my new Berkley Cherrywood HD 7-foot medium-action spinning rod.
I walked along the edge of the creek until I found an opening in the brush and trees that I could cast through. I spent most of the day fishing from several feet about the creek bed, flipping the jig into the water, shaking it once it hit the water and then slowly retrieving the jig either with a slow, straight retrieve, hopping it along the bottom or with a drag-and-deadstick retrieve.
On my first cast, the bait had barely been in the water for 10 seconds before I saw the line start to tighten and move on its own. I set the hook and had a small, sort of white and blue-colored bass on the line. I reeled him to the shoreline, but he fell off before I could get him to the bank.
I put out a few more casts and eventually got another hookset — this time a much larger, much more green-colored largemouth bass. The line was tight, but the knots held strong as I lifted the 2-pounder up the cliff to where I was standing near a bike path.
I took a few pictures and a video and tossed the fish as best as I could back into the deeper part of the creek. I kept aiming my casts around a tree to the left of me in deep water and finally hooked another decent fish. This one fought a lot harder than the first one but actually looked and felt a smaller once I got him to shore. I put him on a scale and it gave me a reading of about 1.18 pounds. Still, it wasn’t a bad fish for Shunga. I released it the same way as the first and then put in a few more casts with no luck before deciding to move downstream.
I found an opening high up in an area that had been stomped down by a previous visitor to the park, likely someone else who had fished the area. I flipped my jig out and was almost immediately met with a bite, but I’d see a flash of green as he swam to the top and then kicked back down, and the jig popped out. This happened a good six to eight times in a row, each time with the bass quickly attacking the jig and then getting loose with a big kick of its tail. It didn’t help that a tree limb above me was restricting my ability to properly set the hook.
Finally, I got the chunky bass up onto the shore and scaled him up the cliff with a perfect hookset caused by the fish’s own momentum as he dove. He wasn’t particularly long, but he had a nice gut on him.
I switched to a simple Ned Rig with a 1/6-ounce NedLockZ jig head and the TRD and moved down to the spot where I had caught several bass the last time I fished Shunga in April. The water was down about several feet at this spot, and I could clearly see the silty bottom of the creek. I tossed the TRD downstream into a deep hole near some fallen timber and quickly caught my fifth bass — this one the smallest. I fished the spot about 30 minutes, but as the wind carried a chill over the creek bed I soon climbed back up and walked the long path back to my truck, the moon rising through the trees over my right shoulder.
All in all, it was a lot of fun and proof again that, no matter what people say, you can catch some quality fish on Shunga Creek.