Last September during the 16th annual John de la Howe Fishing Tournament, two kids in a boat captained by Rick Quarles landed a 30-pound striped bass, bigger than any fish previously caught during the event on Thurmond Lake.
Quarles and members of the Clarks Hill Striper Club decided to make it even more memorable for the kids – Brodrickus G. and Andrew F. – by having the fish mounted.
School policy does not allow the kids’ surnames to be published.
Eddie Wilson, a Langley, S.C., taxidermist, kindly donated his time and skill and last Tuesday evening, Quarles & Company presented the mounted fish to the kids at John de la Howe School near McCormick, S.C.
• Congratulations to Connor Giella, a freshman at Augusta Christian School, and his teammate, Zach Battle, of Douglasville, Ga., where he is an Alexander High School junior.
They won the Student Angler Federation/FLW High School Open Bass Tournament recently on Lake Russell. They tied with eventual South Carolina champions George Compton and Hunter Bond, of Laurens High School, but won the title on a tiebreaker.
All will be among the field at the Southeastern Conference Regional Championship at a site and date to be announced.
• Augusta Marine will hold an indoor boat show at its store at 4250 Belair Frontage Road today and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Seminars from Lowrance and Humminbird and striper-hybrid seminars from Fish On! Guide Ed Lepley are among events to be held during the show.
• Condolences to the family and fishing buddies of Jewel Jessie, who died recently. Jewel was a stalwart in the Fort Gordon Sportsman’s Club and usually teamed with Bob Palagyi in the club’s fishing tournaments on Butler Reservoir.
Raysville Marina (Leon Buffington), (706) 595-5582 – Maurice McDonald, of Augusta, caught nine good crappies in our fish house. He also caught nine more in the fish house on another trip. Ernie Campbell, of Thomson, caught 20 crappies. Andrew Shealy and Blake Arnold caught 30 good-sized crappies on jigs. Jeff Pope and Adam Schommer caught nine crappies on jigs and three stripers trolling with jigs.
Capt. David Willard, U.S. Coast Guard-licensed, fulltime professional guide specializing in hybrids, striped bass and trophy largemouth bass. (Boat phone: (706) 214-0236. (803) 637-6379 (www.crockettrocketstriperfishing.com) – Water temperatures have gone from mid 60s on one afternoon trip back down to 48 on a morning trip. I guess you can say it’s typical March weather. We’re catching some nice fish on the good weather day, getting stripers, hybrids and largemouth bass on artificial as well as live bait. Getting into a large school of fish the other day that blackened the screen turned out to be white perch, there were thousands. My group from Chicago had a blast jigging white perch and small stripers with Berry’s Flex-It Spoons.
Billy Murphy, U.S. Coast Guard-licensed guide specializing in striped bass and hybrid bass. (706) 733-0124 – My son, Brad, and I went scouting for crappies last Tuesday. The water was 48 degrees at 9:30 a.m., but had risen to 55 degrees by 2 p.m. We caught just three fish before 2 and 28 slab crappies after that hour, most of them being the beautiful black crappies. We trolled Hal-Flies beneath corks in six feet of water. The lures had green bodies and red tails.
Bill Speer, The Fishing Coach, professional guide specializing in largemouth bass fishing on Lake Russell (www.thefishingcoach.com) (706) 421-6630 – The fishing is still not great on Russell, a few good fish are hitting the small Alabama Rig as well as jigs. Water temperature is climbing and the spawn is on the way. A Greenfish Shakeyhead with a floating Roboworm are among my favorite lures this time of the year. I also throw a Bomber Flat A and Thundershad flat bait.
William Sasser’s Guide Service, (Capt. William Sasser, Capt. Bradd Sasser, Capt. Andrew Tubbs, U.S. Coast Guard-licensed, full time professional guides specializing in crappies, hybrids and striped bass). (William) (706) 589-5468, (Bradd) (706) 267-4313, (Andrew) (803) 507-5083 – With surface temperatures warming into the mid 50s, hybrids and stripers have stayed in the backs of creeks in the shallows in Hawe, Baker, Dordon and Wells creeks. Some crappie fishermen trolling jigs in the shallows are hooking up with 2- and 4-pound hybrids. Pulling live herring beneath planer boards around the riprap below the S.C Welcome Center during the afternoons has produced some really nice slab hybrids and this fishing will get only better as temperatures climb. Crappie fishing has stayed strong and can be caught using minnows or jigs. This week, we enjoyed fishing with Tonya and Andy Bettencourt, Aiken; Jerome Dorsey, Augusta; Fleming Petty, Waynesboro, Ga.; Myron Cooper, Augusta, and Harold Brown, Hephzibah.
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NORTH GEORGIA MOUNTAIN STREAMS
Carter and Hunter Morris, licensed professional guides specializing in fly fishing for rainbow, brook and brown trout. (706) 833-1083 (www.flyfishingnorthgeorgia.com) (facebook.com/flyfishingnorthgeorgia) – Trout are really hungry, now that a cold winter is on the way out. As severe as this winter was, remember that last summer was very mild. That means all of north Georgia’s streams lost very few trout during that time and this spring is when we’ll reap the benefits.
MERRY LAND BRICKYARD PONDS
Check-in station, 1408 Doug Barnard Parkway, Gene Kirkland, (706 722-8263) – We’ll start our night bass tournament tonight. Hours are 6-10. See me for details. Brickyard report: Paul Wolf caught 14 bass in the Membership Pond. John Jenkins caught six bass in the same pond. Roy Carpenter caught 22 crappies and four bass. Ray Owens caught 16 crappies, two bass and four catfish in the Ditch. Troy Reese caught six bass in the Expressway Pond. Ray Taylor caught six bass (8 pounds, 2 ounces) in the Farm Pond. Roy Owens and partner caught 36 crappies and five bass in the Ditch.