There are many different methods of locating and catching fish. We have all seen anglers standing on the bank, tossing their baits as far out into the water as they can cast, while other anglers on boats are paralleling the shoreline, casting to the bank. One group of anglers is just as likely to catch fish as the other, even though they are approaching the task from totally different directions.
Keeping all this in mind, I was excited to have the opportunity to go out on Lake Anna with Ken Kirk of K2 Guide Service. Ken is firmly of the opinion that bass that hold on deep structure are more easily caught, as they are not as affected by variations in water temperature, high or low pressure fronts, muddy water or winds. While he is way off the bank, fishing deeper water, I am normally on the bank, casting to shallow water.
My nephew, Wayne Turner, and I met Ken at Sturgeon Creek Marina, launched his boat and headed out onto the waters of Lake Anna. The previous week had seen temperatures in the 70s, but we were bundled up in winter clothing as the temperature on this day was still in the low 40s. Ken took it easy on us, keeping his speed down on the run up the lake. He pulled up on the first spot and proceeded to explain why we were there. There was an underwater ledge running from the one point of a cove to the opposite point. This ledge was in 10-12 feet of water and promptly dropped off into 18-24 feet on the outside. The fish were holding on the edge of the drop. We rigged drop shot rigs according to Ken's instructions and proceeded to slowly drag them across the ledge. It did not take Ken long to set the hook and put the first fish in the boat. Within a few minutes, we had each caught fish using this technique on the ledge.
It was now time to run over the area and check out what it looked like on the depthfinder. Although the meter did not show any fish, we had already proved that they were there. The ledge showed up just exactly as Ken had said and we filed this away in our memory banks for the next time we fished this lake.
The engine fired up and we headed to the next spot on his "milk run". Running up lake, we turned into a cove and set down in front of a dock. He held the boat well away from the dock, pointed to the middle of the cove and told us that there was a hump coming up to 10 feet out of the surrounding 20-25 feet of water. A few repeated casts of the drop shot rig produced a couple of fish and suddenly, we were off again.
Pulling up to a rocky bluff point, he told us that the point continued into 25 feet of water. The first cast produced a fat healthy bass of about three pounds. Subsequent casts brought two more into the boat and it was time to leave. Heading on uplake, we went under a bridge and set the boat down. Parallel to the bridge on the uplake side, was a scattering of downed timber on the bottom in 15+ feet of water. We didn't bother fishing this area, but noted it for future reference.
The next spot was another cove with a hump in front of a dock dropping into 18 feet of water. Three quick fish convinced us that the fish were holding there. And, as they say, "The Beat Went On". Over the course of the eight hours we were on the water, we covered about half of the lake, with Ken pointing out exactly what was underwater and us testing his knowledge with our baits. Every spot produced fish.
Along with his expertise in underwater structure, we also got a lesson in map reading, as Ken showed us how to look at a map and figure out just where to find the underwater structure that would hold fish. The map reading session alone is worth the price of admission, but the day spent with a very funny, social individual like Ken is a day to remember. With most fishing partners, bantering back and forth, ragging on each other, is part of the experience. Ken takes it to a new level, as he kept us laughing all day long.
For a truly unique experience, check out Ken Kirk at K2 Guide Service. He guides out of Sturgeon Creek Marina and may be reached at 540-894-4783 or check out his website at: www.k2guideservice.com.