By Mike Zlotnicki
Memorial Day was fast approaching and my wife, Renee, and I wondered what to do with our three girls. Being an “outdoors family,” it kind of struck me that we haven’t been fishing – together – in a while. So, that’s what we did.
I’m fortunate in that a dog-training club I’m a member of includes a three-acre pond on it for water work. The bonus is that it holds enough bass, sunfish and catfish to appeal as a fishing hole on its own. We caught enough for memories and photos, returning all to the water to be caught another day.
You can fish, too. For the 2015 National Fishing and Boating Week, the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission is hosting dozens of kids’ fishing events across the state. Almost all are free of charge.
In Wake County, the Lake Wheeler Fishing Derby will be held at Simpkins Pond at Lake Wheeler Park from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. June 6. Pre-registration is preferred. Contact Ben Coats at 919-662-5704 or at email@example.com.
In Franklin County, the Lake Royale Fishing Derby will be held at Lake Royale from 8 a.m. to noon June 6. No registration is required and the event is for children 15 and younger. Contact Mike Mullin at 919-727-0449 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Remember that fishing opportunities exist year-round with the Commission’s Community Fishing Program and Tackle Loaner Program. Some of the state’s best fishing for channel catfish can be found at any of the 40-plus lakes (and one stream) across North Carolina that have been designated Community Fishing Program sites.
Community Fishing Program sites are intensively managed bodies of water that are stocked with catchable-sized channel catfish monthly from April-September. In addition, many Community Fishing Program sites feature a handicap-accessible fishing pier and solar-powered fish feeders to make fishing more enjoyable for anglers of all ages. Program sites are ideal for families seeking enjoyable and economical fishing trips.
All North Carolina fishing regulations apply at Community Fishing Program sites. Go to ncwildlife.org/Fishing/LearnResources to learn more.
Saturday May 16, Jordan Lake, Farrington Point Wildlife Ramp
Topping 29 teams, Keith Deal and Ricky Kenworthy won for the second weekend in a row with five bass weighing in at 20.02 pounds and they also won first place “tournament within the tournament” giving them a total of $1,260 in prize money. The second place team was Adam Spell and Kenny Spell with five bass weighing 18.06 pounds. They also won First Place Big Fish (6.50 lbs.), giving them a total of $906 in take-home pay.
One hundred and ten bass were weighed in for a total of 299 pounds that averaged 2.71 pounds per fish. Most were caught in plastic rigs, jigs, spinnerbaits and even some buzzbaits and topwater lures early in shallow water.
The Cashion Fishing Rods Spring Team Bass Mini Trail Championship at Shearon Harris will be held Saturday June 6 out of Cross Point Landing, and the 2015 Piedmont Bass Classics $10,000 Spring Team Bass Trail Championship will be held at Falls Lake out of Ledge Rock Wildlife Ramp on Saturday, June 13.
More information about the tournaments can be found at piedmontbassclassics.com.
Here are full results of the most recent qualifying tournament:
First Place: Keith Deal of Holly Springs and Ricky Kenworthy of Cary; five bass, 20.02 pounds, $840.
Second Place: Adam Spell of Sanford and Kenny Spell of Sanford, five bass, 18.06 pounds, $500.
Third Place: Bud Whitt of Staley and Spencer Moody of Siler City, five bass, 17.01 pounds, $360.
Fourth Place: Dennis Reedy of Siler City and Wally Szuba of Cary, five bass, 16.77 pounds, $280.
Fifth Place: Vinston Nettles of Pittsboro and Jasper Cotton of Pittsboro, five bass, 15.62 pounds, $220.
Sixth Place: Chad Emory of Durham and Tim Emory of Creedmoor five bass, 15.61 pounds, $120.