The John Scarborough Sunfish Spectacular held at Damon 7 Lakes yielded more than just monster bluegill.
Before I get into the report, let me thank Mike and Matt Arnold for helping make this such a great event.
Friday afternoon the TFF crew started arriving, and fishing. Camp was set up quickly, and plans discussed, before we started hitting the water.
We did have this unexpected, but welcome guest.
Mary-Kay and Skip borrowed a boat from Mike and hit the water catching fish almost immediately.
The rest of us scattered and found fish. The fishing was slow, but consistant.
Just before sundown we lit a campfire and sat for a few minutes before conversation was drowned out by growling stomachs. This is where Ron Mayfield stepped up and offered to feed us. His plans for a meal were better than anybody else’s in the groups so we gladly accepted. Boiled shrimp and stir fry we devoured a short time later, throwing the shrimp shells into the fire.
As we sat around the fire Matt Arnold asked Mary-Kay if she was interested in catching frogs again this year. A very short time later they came roaring back into camp with Mary-Kay holding her prize, which we admired before she released it to go make more tadpoles.
More stories told than I can remember, but I remember a lot of laughter as we sat around the fire ,and talked. At one time there were 15 of us around the fire, but as the night got on we started dropping out. Some went home, others to the tents that we set up.
At 0430 some goofball decided that the fire needed more wood and started splitting firewood and making coffee. Oh wait… that was Puck.
By 0600 all the campers had either coffee or juice in hand as Ron cooked up some more of the shrimp with eggs. I never knew how good of a combination this was, until now. Some of us went back for seconds .
Paperwork for the event was actually started at 0630 and went smoothly until there was a communication error, holding folks up a the gate. Everything went smoothly again after that was cleared. Sign-in was closed at 0915 and just about everybody was on the water fishing.
By the time the headcount was done we had 27 adults and 8 youths participating in the event.
I didn’t hear of anybody getting skunked, and there were some nice fish caught. From monster bluegills to a surprise large mouthed bass were all landed and CPR (catch, photograph, and released).
I can’t tell you what flies worked for the entire group, but I can say that I personally caught more fish on the yellow spider, but the bass wanted the “blind squirrely grinnel fly” which is a royal pain to throw on a 5wt.
Noon-time with our cooks, Mary-Kay, Matt, and Skip, brought all the group together for the feast, hamburgers and hotdogs grilled to perfection. As an appetizer, Ron grill the last of the shrimp and passed them around.
Back onto the water right after lunch, and the wind picked up, making casting a challenge with the lighter rods that we wanted to use. I had to drop the 3wt and pick up a 5wt.
All was cleaned up, and most of the folks were on the road home by 1700. At least 3 die-hards were still on the water waiting for the magic hour just before sundown when I left at 1900.