With temps dipping into the low thirties overnight, we woke up to cloudy skies and calm weather. The redhorse were calling. When Andy and I met Dr. Flathead on the riverbank, he already had a fish hooked. It was a good sign. Before five minutes had passed, he and Andy had the first double of the day on the line.
A matched pair of beefy shortheads came to the bank.
Soon after, Andy landed this beautiful 20-inch beast of a shorthead.
I matched him with a 19.5 incher.
Then Doc hooked something heavy and solid. It came up and broke water, and we all knew Doc had a true trophy fish on the line. After a gruelling fight, Andy got it in the net.
Our first greater of the day.
Biggest Greater I've seen in a long time. It measured 26 inches.
By the time they reach this impressive size, Greaters often have battle scars - missing scales, chewed up fins, or the like. This one had none of it - it was the most perfect specimen of a big greater redhorse I have seen.
The sun came out and the fish started biting even better. Not long after, I followed up with a greater of my own. Five pounds smaller than Doc's, but another perfect specimen with really red fins.
Doc scored a 20-inch shorthead under a sunny fall sky.
Of the sixty or so fish we caught today, about 40 were shortheads and 20 were big white suckers like this one.
All were released to fight another day.
Then Andy joined the Greater Club with a big old greater redhorse that battled fiercely on light tackle. It's a good day when each and every angler lands a Greater.
We named this one "Old One-Eye" for obvious reasons. If any of you catch him again, let us know!
Andy hooked another big one soon after, and surprised us all with this catch - a Silver Redhorse. It was the only silver redhorse we got today. This, along with a fluke smallmouth, earned Andy the award for most species caught for the trip.
With the day winding down, I set the hook on a very light biter and soon had my hands full. This battle-scarred brute of a greater measured only half an inch less than Doc's massive greater from earlier in the day. This is now my personal best greater redhorse. This fellow had a ragged top fin that looked like it had been mauled by snapping turtles.
And as he swam away with a big splash, it marked the end of another great day of redhorse fishing in the northlands.