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Old 09-25-2007, 10:02 AM
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Default Upper New River Smallmouth Float/Drag Trip On 09/23/07 & 09/24/07

My brother-in-law and I began our trip in our pontoon boats near the US21 bridge between Independence, Virginia and Sparta, North Carolina on Sunday, September 23, 2007. We were on the water by 9:45 a.m., and it became apparent very quickly that we would be dragging our "toons" almost as much as floating them. We picked up several smallmouth in the 10" to 14" range, but no bigger fish. We "floated" approximately 5 miles on day one, spending the night on a little island who's whole mouse population spent the night under or around our tents. We almost starved to death the first night, having only ribeye steaks and potatoes to choose from. But, we managed to survive.

On day two, September 24, 2007, we awoke at approximately 7:00 a.m to the distinctive sound of a bull that was very vocal, and really close by. After getting out of our tents, we observed this huge black angus bull standing in the river up to part of his male anatomy. He was approximately 100 feet from our camp giving us the "eye." After about 10 minutes, he finally decided to go back to his field. He may have smelled our "steak breath" and decided to give it up. After a measly breakfast of coffee, eggs and sausage, we were back on the New by around 9:00 a.m. The morning started off decent, but still no big smallies. We probably picked up 30 fish in the same 10" to 14" range in the morning. We ran across a couple of guys in a canoe spin fishing who seemed to be having about the same success as us. The afternoon fishing was a little slow, and the fish were sporadic at best. We were out of the water by 6:00 p.m., and had reached our destination at the US58 bridge between Galax, Virginia and Independence, Virginia.

My take on the trip? Good friend, good food, decent fishing, not much water, lots of dragging and bad bull!
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Old 09-25-2007, 10:23 AM
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Default Re: Upper New River Smallmouth Float/Drag Trip On 09/23/07 & 09/24/07

Ain't the New grand? I only wish there was some water in it!

Not to hijack, but we floated that stretch in a day. I would NEVER try that again with the water so low. We did more rowing and sliding over rocks than fishing, and my arms and shoulders knew all about it for days afterwards.

Here's my old report:

A couple friends and I raided the New River yestersday in hopes of tagging some smallies.
Though the fish weren't in the bitingest of moods, we got into 'em fairly good
The river was low and going slow at times. Read that, we gotta row through THAT?:
Click the image to open in full size.

Through hours of laborious tedium (yeah, I wrote that!) we did find a few moments of excitement:
Click the image to open in full size.

Nice bass:
Click the image to open in full size.

One of mine, thank you very much Mr. Anthony Hipps for the soft-body poppers!:
Click the image to open in full size.

This guy vacuumed 'em up all along the float!
Huntin' and stalking:

Click the image to open in full size.

It was a long day for sure, not helped by the low water but shirtsleeve weather, zero boat trraffic (probably for good reason), happy, dumb fish and good company leaves me yearning for more (when I recover that is!)!
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Old 09-25-2007, 10:42 AM
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Default Re: Upper New River Smallmouth Float/Drag Trip On 09/23/07 & 09/24/07

Hi jdgrubbjr,

Thanks for the report and pictures. I know it was a blast. I think your problem was you didn't take enough stuff.

I have used just about every kind of boat you can think of and my favorite is the pontoon. It is so much fun to hit a few rapids and maneuver your boat around missing all the boulders, or at least most of them. To bad you had to do all that dragging.

Frank
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Old 09-25-2007, 10:59 AM
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Default Re: Upper New River Smallmouth Float/Drag Trip On 09/23/07 & 09/24/07

Thanks Frank. We were planning on staying 4 days on the New (20 miles worth), but decided that it was a lot lower than we wanted to deal with, so we pulled out. As far as rapids go, the closest thing to a rapid was my rapid heartbeat when the bull started winking at me.
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Old 09-25-2007, 11:21 AM
 
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Default Re: Upper New River Smallmouth Float/Drag Trip On 09/23/07 & 09/24/07

David

Glad to see you got to get your mind away. Your meals sound like some the Psycho boys used to fix.

Hope the rest of your vaction week goes well.

Thanks for the report
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