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John Craine's Trips

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This user has 48 trips in their collection.
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More Bass on the Fly at Buckmaster
Avg. Rating: 5
# Reviews: 3
Views: 595
Buckmaster
7/12/2013

Watch the video here http://youtu.be/X-aEZOqdL0w

After a great fly outing here on Wednesday, I hit up Buckmaster again early Friday morning eager to give my new Orvis Clearwater 906 it's first workout and sliming. Again fishing a size 6 green popper over submerged weed beds, I was into the fish quickly. Throughout the morning the bite wasn't as active as two days earlier but I still managed to entice a number of fish to the surface. Fish size continues to be an issue here with many fish below the legal limit of 12". The top water action is fun but I'm hankerin' to feel the tug something bigger on the end of my line and test the limits of the 6 wt. The only bad news from this trip is that I'm beginning to develop a case of "fisherman's elbow"aka tennis elbow and will have to rest it for a while. I may have to practice my left handed casting so I don't lose too many fishing days.
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Bassin' Somewhere in SE Mass., July 7, 2013
Avg. Rating: 5
# Reviews: 7
Views: 532
location withheld out of respect for my host
7/7/2013

Watch the video here http://youtu.be/PkSIPRkM2ZE

A friend from MAFF turned me onto this place so I won't give away his secrets. This is a shallow very weedy pond with lots of lilypads and an undeveloped shoreline rimmed with vegetation, ergo, a perfect frog pond. The problem was the frog wasn't working very well. I worked the frog hard nearly two hours and only got a couple blowups that missed. I finally switched to a watermelon stick bait to get the action started. The water level was high and the bass were holding deep in the flooded shoreline vegetation (thanks for the tip Sam). I continued to alternate between the frog and the stickbait all day. The final score Frog-1, Stickbait-4. And one pickerel on a spinner bait.
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Bass Fly Fest at Buckmaster
Avg. Rating: 5
# Reviews: 4
Views: 615
Buckmaster
7/9/2013

View the video here
http://youtu.be/sHBiyYOJs1c

Dead calm summer afternoons are perfect times to hit up the local pond for some top water action. Here I'm using my 6 wt Fenwick World Class fly rod and a chartreuse size 6 popper to do my dirty work. The action started almost immediately and didn't let up. I finally quit because I was tired and it was getting dark. The water here is stained but still has decent clarity so I fished areas over emergent weed beds in four to eight feet of water. I boated 11 bass and missed about half as many more hookups.
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Ames Long Pond - Father's Day

Avg. Rating: 5
# Reviews: 5
Views: 817
Ames Long Pond - Stoughton
6/16/2013

I celebrated Fathers Day by fishing new water. Ames is a very weedy, bassy-looking pond that promises good frog fishing. Following last week's rains, however, like many places this one fished tough, for bass anyway. Catching pickerel was easy on almost any bait. I focussed on the south pond and worked the entire eastern shoreline, mostly using the frog. Didn't get my first bass until I was 3/4s along. I tossed a watermelon stickbait under an overhanging branch and discovered a very healthy 3lb bass! A little further along I nailed a fat 1.5 lb on a frog tossed over a small patch of lily pads. There were a bunch of pickerel in the mix but that was it for bass. On the way back I saw a guy fishing from the beach with his kid haul in BIG bass. He was shouting to his buddy, "Get the scale, get the scale!" and whooping it up something fierce. So I know they are in there.

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Bass Bangin' in Auburn

Avg. Rating: 5
# Reviews: 5
Views: 794
location withheld out of respect for my host
5/30/0

Pirougejoe (Rick Bradley) invited me out to fish one of his honey holes so I packed the car and headed west to Worcester this morning. Rick's chartreuse spinnerbait was on fire all day, so much so that he never changed lures over 5 hours of fishing. He tells me 17 bass in the boat including a 3lb plus a few pickerel and other species. Meanwhile, yours truly was struggling. I started with a yellow Booyah frog, but only hooked and lost one small pickerel. After an hour did something I almost never do, I switched to a watermelon senko rigged wacky and managed to boat a couple of small bass. For the rest of the day it was back and forth between the frog, the wacky senko, a white spinnerbait and a blue and chartreuse spinnerbait. I managed to get a 3lb on the senko and immediately after that a 4lb on the frog. I just couldn't get any sort of rhythm or pattern going. All told 3 bass on senko, two bass on frog, three bass on blue/chartreuse spinnerbait, 1 bass on a white spinnerbait. An NO pickerel or any other type of fish. Oh and thanks for buying lunch Rick!

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A blast at beautiful Buckmaster

Avg. Rating: 5
# Reviews: 9
Views: 1095
Buckmaster
5/25/2013

So I was browsing MAFF in the early hours this morning debating if I was going to brave the weather to get some fishing in. At first I thought I'd just do some fly fishing, less gear, less commitment than getting the kayak out. But in the end I decided that I would try a new pond that I scouted out yesterday. So I packed up the kayak AND the fly fishing gear (just in case), put on my rain gear and drove to my new pond. When I got there at 7:00 I found a father / son team had planted themselves in the only decent launch spot. So rather than make a stink I decided to drive on over to Buckmaster. I don't normally fish Buckmaster because it can get pretty crowded but on a cold rainy day like today I figured I'd have the pond to myself. That was true for the most part but I was surprised to see how many die hards actually came out in the rain. I guess the fishing bug bites pretty hard.

Anyway, I loaded the kayak with two baitcast setups and started throwing a frog in the shallows on the north side. It took a while to get the first hit, I was beginning to wonder if the bite was off, but eventually I got that first bass in the boat. After that I was able to start getting regular hits on the frog. I had to work for them but between 7:30 and 12:30 I boated 8 bass, all two pounds or less, and I probably missed as many more on bad hook sets. The only bad thing that happened is that one small bass got my frog lodged deep in his throat and I had to cut him open to get it out. He was going to die anyway :(

After five hours I'd had enough of the bass but I still wanted to fish. Now I've never caught a trout at Buckmaster but earlier this week I was tossing a line from shore and the guy next to me hauled in a 4lb rainbow that looked like a freakin' football. So I made a quick pit stop at my car to get my spinning rod and trout lures and paddled out to the deep section. I started throwing a Super Duper without any hits. The wind and rain were starting to pick up and I was making liberal use of my anchor. An hour passed without any hits. I changed to a chrome Kastmaster and paddled into the area where dude caught the football. Cast, cast, cast, cast, cast, nothing. I was seriously considering packing it in when BAM, trout on! and a nice one! It was a good sized rainbow but I dicked around with him and he twisted himself around my anchor line and got off. Man was I pissed, but I was also pumped to get my first trout here. So I cast a few more times and BAM another one! This one swallowed the lure pretty deep and floated belly up when released, so I kept it for dinner. A few more casts and BAM, fish on! Another nice one, and dinner for my wife. A few casts later, BAM, fish on but after a minute he spit the hook. Cast, BAM, dinner for the kids. Cast BAM, another that got away. All told 5 trout on, three in the boat and on the plate. All told 7 hours on the water in the rain, and it was terrific.

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Trout, Breakfast of Champions

Avg. Rating: 5
# Reviews: 10
Views: 841
super secret trout honey hole
5/15/2013

Hit up the super secret trout honey hole for an hour and managed to nail these two beauties on a black size 4 wooly bugger with a red bead head. Sadly, my solitude was interrupted by an old immigrant couple who spoke little english and proceeded to set up their "drop and plop" lines right in my backcast area. I refused to give an inch, I didn't give a s*** if my backcast hit one of them, I was there first! I also made a show of releasing both my fish right in front of where they were sitting. OK, call me an ass.

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Morning relief

Avg. Rating: 5
# Reviews: 4
Views: 879
Noanet Pond
4/14/2013

Trotted down to the local pond after dropping the kids at school this morning and wet the fly line for an hour. Not a lot to report but managed to catch a small bass and pumpkinseed on a size 4 woolly bugger.

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A lovely morning of trout

Avg. Rating: 5
# Reviews: 7
Views: 641
super secret trout honey hole
5/10/2013

Hit the super secret trout honey hole this morning for about 90 minutes. Water was stirred up from yesterdays rain but trou were still rising. I was using the 5wt with a poly leader, 12 lb flouro tippet and size 6 olive wooly bugger. Lots of hit 'n' spit but I managed to net the two fine specimens pictured below.

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Fish on, fish off
Avg. Rating: 4
# Reviews: 1
Views: 542
super secret trout honey hole
Hit up the super secret trout honey hole this morning for an hour. Had two good strikes with fish on but both spit the fly after 5 seconds. Was using a size 4 brown wooly bugger. Planning to go out later this morning and practice my casts, they are abysmal.
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Kayak Tournament at Ponkapoag

Avg. Rating: 5
# Reviews: 2
Views: 765
Ponkapoag
Fished Ponki from 7AM to 12 noon. Weather was sunny and clear, in the 40s early and warming into the 50's. Wind was out of the N/NE at 10-15 mph creating large swells and white caps. I first paddled over to the island and drifted with the wind across the southeast corner working a square lip and a white spinnerbait. No hits on the crankbait; had several pickerel strikes on the white spinnerbait but all of them jumped the hook. Then worked my way toward Cormorant Rock getting a few more small picks. At this point I was staying with the spinnerbait since it was getting fish. Paddled into the northeast corner and proceeded to catch several more picks. Then drifted in a southwesterly direction with the wind but it was so strong that I soon deployed my drift sock to slow down. Was soon in the western part of the pond off of Bench Point and aligned with the pilings. The white spinnerbait was hammering the picks and I was able to pick up a couple keeper bass just shy of 2 lbs each. I continued to work the area, dropping anchor every 50 yards or so. Eventually hooked into my gator pick at 3 lb 5 oz. Final tally was 2 bass and 20+ pickerel and took home the side pool for lunker pick.

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Beating the water with a stick

Avg. Rating: 5
# Reviews: 1
Views: 587
super secret trout honey hole
5/2/2013

Trotted back down to my super secret trout honey hole today, this time carrying my 30 year old Fenwick fiberglas 6wt. Just like yesterday, trout were rising and jumping all around me. Tied on a size 4 black wooly bugger and on my 2nd cast had a strike. Sadly, I would get only one other strike over the next two hours. Yesterday I used a much lighter leader and a smaller, olive wooly bugger and was able to get 5 strikes and land a good fish in an hour and a half.

So after two hours I packed up and moved to another pond where I managed to catch one small bass on a chartreuse and white clouser. Not much catching today but lots of practice with the fly rod.

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Trout-O-Rama

Avg. Rating: 5
# Reviews: 3
Views: 787
super secret trout honey hole
5/1/2013

After dropping the kids off at school this morning I snuck over to my new super secret trout honey hole for a few casts of the 5 wt. The trout were jumping all around me, taunting me, daring me to catch them. So I did. Well, I caught one and hooked into a few others that I lost. The size 6 Wooly Bugger is my new favorite fly.

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Neponset River then Ponki
Avg. Rating: 5
# Reviews: 2
Views: 672
Neponset River
4/28/2013

Second trip to the Neponset. Launched from Signal Hill in Canton and paddled upstream toward Norwood. The water was significantly lower than last month but quite navigable. Lots of deadfall and "fishy" structure. The water is quite murky, I sure wouldn't want to fall in, and I was throwing a chartreuse square lip crankbait and a perch Rapal up against the wood and along the weed edges. Nothing was taking my bait, in fact, I didn't see any signs of fish activity at all. Finally, after passing under Route 95 a short distance up river there is a channel or catchment area on the left with no current. As I paddled into it I spooked a lot of fish near the surface. Finally, proof that something actually lives there. Still, I couldn't scare up a bite. I was finally able to hook into a bass deep into some deadfall. It shook the hook as I was bringing it in. My very next cast I nailed a decent and very lively pickerel. After that, nothing. I did notice that some of the baitfish I spooked were crappie but there were definitely larger things in there too. After that I called it quits for the Neponset and went over to Ponki where I proceeded to slay the slime darts once again on a perch Rapala. There was one small bass and a lunker yellow perch in the mix too. Interestingly, I couldn't scare up a hit on my white spinnerbaits. No matter, who can argue with a beautiful day on a beautiful pond catching scads of fish, even if they aren't bass.
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Back River then Ponki
Avg. Rating: 5
# Reviews: 2
Views: 771
Back River, Weymouth
4/27/2013

My friend Tom from NEKF and I took a scouting trip to Weymouth's Back River to hunt for stripers. We launched from Wessagussett around 10:30 and peddled under the 3A bridge. Currents from the incoming tide were quite strong and swept us along at a tidy clip. Once under the bridge we discovered a wonderful undeveloped park area that would make for a nice day of fishing if there were any fish to be found. On our fishfinders we marked a lot of herring balls and a few larger fish in the 17-21 inch range, but no bites. Just after slack tide we called it a day. Tommy went home but I wanted to wash the skunk off so I headed over to Ponki where I proceeded to kill the slime darts on a perch colored Rapala jerk bait. Sadly, no bass, no gator pickerel, no photos, but still a nice 7+ hours on salt and sweet waters.
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Fat Girl

Avg. Rating: 5
# Reviews: 6
Views: 994
Upper Mystic
4/21/2013

Went to Upper Mystic this morning to participate in the NEKF Spring Thing event. I don't think I've seen so many Hobies in one place before. Temp at 6:30 was mid-30s and we were all bundled up like it was still March. And once again the wind was howling even though the weather report claimed otherwise. We launched from the Sandy Beach area in the upper portion of the lake. Water was really murky, surprisingly so for this time of year. Fishing was spotty, a couple guys had a full bag in the first hour, most of us struggled to find fish. The bait of the day turned out to be a silver 3" Husky Jerk but of course I didn't have one of those. After 2.5 hours I finally scored with a chartreuse square lip, a real nice fat girl measuring in at 20". I don't have a weight because I didn't bring a scale; the event awarded longest fish, not heaviest. She was my only fish of the day. Turns out several of us caught 19-20" bass but the winner turned out to be a 21.5"pickerel. Go figure, I catch bigger every trip to Ponki. I'd rather have the 20" bass any day. Afterward we had bbq and beer with the group and I had the chance to meet a lot of the guys from NEKF. All in all a really nice morning.

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Ponki pickerel

Avg. Rating: 5
# Reviews: 7
Views: 967
Ponkapoag
4/20/2013

OK, so it's been a few days since I was fishing. I had a new spinning outfit (Abu Cardinal 603ALB and Vendetta 6'6"medium rod) that need to be broken in. I also needed to get the Hobie out for its maiden voyage this year in prep for tomorrow's NEKF Spring Thing and Upper Mystic.

After early morning rain stopped I hit the Ponk around 10:30 and started throwing a new Sebile Koolie minnow and got a medium pickerel on first cast of the day, a fairly auspicious start and the new setup was officially "slimed". I then headed west trolling the Koolie. Another medium pick, followed by a decent bass and then a gator pick.

The wind was really beginning to pick up when I noticed another yaker coming toward me in an Ascend FS10. So I peddled over to meet Nick, a sometime MAFF lurker and newb to kayak fishing. We swapped some info and then went about fishing. After that, things died down for me. I tried throwing my white spinner bait without any success. The wind was howling by this point and blowing me west to east at a pretty good clip.

I was switching between the Koolie on my new spinning setup and the spinnerbait on my Revo STX. I lost a good fish on the Koolie just east of the boat launch. I worked the southeastern side of the pond for a while without any other hits. I then peddled west trolling the Koolie without much success until I passed into the western half of the pond, then I nailed a couple of mid-sized picks in succession.

Now in the western end of the pond, I decided I'd just drift with the wind back to the launch site. Throwing the spinnerbait I was able to land a couple more medium picks. So for the day, I landed one bass and at least 8 picks.

I also learned a few things. First, spinning gear is much better in the wind than baitcasting gear, which will backlash if not thrown downwind or cross wind. Second, the Hobie performs much better in the wind and waves than my Ascend D10. However, the Ascend, being a SINK, offers significantly more protection from the wind and elements. So all in all, I learned a few things, met a cool dude, caught a few fish, used my new Rhino Rack for the first time and prepared for tomorrow's NEKF Spring Thing. Not a bad day.

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The beasties were biting

Avg. Rating: 5
# Reviews: 10
Views: 682
Ponkapoag
4/18/2013

So I was able to get out on the water today between 11:30 and 2:30 and it seems that all the big fish were feeding as all had fat bellies. First up was a 26" gator pickerel caught on a square lip. That was followed by a 22", and a 24" both on a white spinnerbait. Lost a decent bass boat side when it spit the spinnerbait back at me. Then I beat the water for about an hour without any action. Decided to return to the previous action spot and promptly picked up another 22" pick and a 3.1 chunk. Also picked up 2 bluegills on my squarelip. Weird. Saw lots of yellow perch following my baits too. On the way back to the launch I was dragging the spinnerbait about 40 feet behind the yak and got a hit from a BIG bass. It felt heavy and I saw his evil grin as he derisively expectorated my spinnerbait. It looked and felt to be a personal best, oh well, just another fish story. Wind was out of the south-southeast for most of the day with nice periods of calm. Temp was mid-60s comfortable and it was nice to not have to wear a lot of layers. All in all a really satisfying 3 hours of fishing. Oh, and the kayak cart broke, again. Luckily I was able to effect the repair with a short length of my anchor line. Thank goodness I always carry a sharp knife.

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The bite is getting better

Avg. Rating: 5
# Reviews: 4
Views: 789
Ponkapoag
4/13/2013

Cold damp overcast morning yesterday, by 10AM the temp was barely 40 degrees. But weather report promised that things would improve so I hauled myself down to Ponki to git what I could. As usual there was a brisk wind coming out of the northwest off of Great Blue Hill. Over the course of the day it would change to the southwest, west, and north making it tough to keep the kayak in place or to predict a drift.

After launching, I paddled west dragging a Rapala perch stick bait about 100 feet off shore. Got the skunk off about 20 minutes in with my first pickerel and continued to work the the most westerly 1/3rd of the pond exclusively for the next 5 hours.

The Rapala perch was working well on the small picks but the trebles were foul hooking them badly. So I clipped a barb off of each treble hook which seemed to help a lot with the hook extraction process. It also reduced my risk of impalement. I am now considering replacing the trebles on some of my crankbaits with the Mustad 7826 double hooks as a trial.

I was seeing a lot of action but by 2PM I still hadn't boated a bass, so I started throwing my old Ponki favorite white spinner bait. First fish, another pick but bigger. Second fish, a solid 2lb chunk with bright red gills and a fat belly. Third fish, a gator pickerel in the 25" range that wanted to take my yak on a tour of the pond. After that the action stopped. I fished for another hour or so without another strike and called it quits aroud 3:45.

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Cherry busted
Avg. Rating: 5
# Reviews: 7
Views: 472
Ponkapoag
4/8/2013

Weather's finally starting to cooperate. On Monday, I saw that the wind was going to be reasonable for a change so I dragged the yak back to Ponki and fished from 10-2. Morning started cloudy and cool, and of course there was still a wind there, just not nearly as bad as it's been. Spent the first 2 hours working the eastern end of the pond with no strikes. Finally paddled out to the middle and drifted east (wind was coming off Great Blue Hill) and nailed 2 picks on a white H&H spinnerbait. Finished my drift, paddled back to the middle and started over. This time picking up a 1.5 lb bass on a chartreuse squarelip, cherry busted. Then nothing else for the rest of the day. Talked to a couple guys out there who were also out there last Friday and they said they were catching a lot of picks and some bass on crank baits. They also said that the prior Friday (recall I was skunked) they had picked up 4 bass. That just makes me feel so special....NOT!
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Ponki PHOOEY
Avg. Rating: 4.75
# Reviews: 4
Views: 674
Ponkapoag
4/5/2013

I tried, lord knows I tried, to catch a fish, any fish today. But I was blanked. That's right S-K-U-N-K-E-D. Six hours on the water and not even a blasted pickerel. I saw a big assed snapping turtle and a painted turtle. I saw cormorants, gulls, geese, swans, ducks, a great blue heron, and several other species of birds but no F-I-S-H. The water was really murky too which is pretty unusual for this place. Probably going back tomorrow to continue the torture unless someone wants to meet me elsewhere.
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Neponset River Nada, 3/30/13
Avg. Rating: 4
# Reviews: 1
Views: 818
Neponset River
3/30/2013

Spent 7 hours paddling the Neponset River for the first time. Put in at Signal Hill and drifted downstream; went about 1/4 mile beyond Route 95 crossover. Water was high and there was a pretty good current. Tons of brush, deadfall and "bassy" looking habitat but there are few places to get out of the current. Slow fishing was out of the question, spinnerbaits and crankbaits were unproductive, so I mostly just enjoyed paddling new water on a sunny day. Will revisit this location once the weather warms and the water drops.

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Ponki 3/29/13
Avg. Rating: 4
# Reviews: 1
Views: 1261
Ponkapoag
3/29/2013

Six hours on the water, one 20" pickerel...and a broken wheel on my kayak cart. That makes two kayak trips in a row with bad luck (broken windshield last weekend). Here's hoping tomorrow is better.

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Lake Waban 3/24/13
Avg. Rating: 4.8
# Reviews: 5
Views: 851
Lake Waban
3/24/2013

First trip of 2013 for me. Lots of wind and not much to report. Sam and I fished for 6 hours and boated three pickerel, all on crank or jerk baits. Fish were showing up on the finder but couldn't be coaxed. At least I wasn't blanked. Next week looks better.
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This user has 48 trips in their collection.

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