My first encounter with mayflies, or at least the first memorable encounter, happened at J.P. Coleman State Park on Pickwick Lake. It was the first week of June, and the weather was about as perfect as it can get. We were chunking some spinners and crankbaits when we came upon a willow tree hanging over the water. The willow was covered with yellow mayflies, and naturally some were falling to the surface of the lake.
A lot of anglers struggle here, said Bay Springs crappie guide and local fishing guru Wayne Inman. They expect it to fish like the other big crappie lakes in the state, and thats just not the case here.
What Inman means is not that Bay Springs is a poor crappie lake; in fact, exactly the opposite is true. But to successfully catch crappie in the 6,700-acre impoundment, anglers will need to understand a few dynamics about the lake.
First is that depth changes are relatively extreme from one end of the impoundment to the other.
The buzz bait sailed through the air like a butterfly. It plopped right down next to a half-submerged, half-rotted log.
And the water erupted like a volcano.
I was trying to get my camera up as Don jerked on his rod to seal the deal. He landed another bass, and I was still way behind on the count.
That hidden lake in Holmes County was off the beaten track on private land we leased to deer hunt. We discovered the isolated Big Black River oxbow lake by mistake. All total it was no bigger than a football field, but it held some decent bass.