Join N1 Outdoors on Clarks Hill lake (a.k.a. – Strom Thurmond lake) on a striped bass fishing trip that turns into a striper and hybrid bass limit! And, as a bonus, get to see the result of N1 Outdoors co-founder, Giles Canter’s first ever catfish noodling experience!
(Striper fishing + hybrid + catfish noodling… All N1 video transcript)
Giles Canter: We’re out here on Clarks Hill Lake, in Georgia. I’m out here with my friend, Luke-Avery Urban to do a little striper fishing today, and try to put a hook N1.
Luke-Avery Urban: So, what we’re doing right now is we’ve just pulled up to this cove and we’re looking for the stripers off these main channel humps. So, we’re really just going in and out of these humps in about 55 to 60 feet of water, down to about 30 feet of water. And, we’re just looking for schools of bait. And, we’re looking for striped bass that will be chasing these bait.
Once we see a good school, we’ll throw the marker out, drop some herring, and try to try to put a hook N1.
I’m just running a Carolina rig here. This one’s a little lighter. I’ve got about a one ounce sinker and I run a palomar knot with a Gamakatsu octopus hook. We’re going to put it right through the front of the eyeball, right through the nostril, the hard part there, so he can still breathe.
And when we put this in, it’s always important to just let the bait just set in the water. Just set it in the water. You don’t want to throw it, because they’re fragile. We’re going to put it down about 25 to 30 feet and try to catch these suspended stripers.
That is a Clarks Hill hybrid. A beautiful Fish! See what we’ve got this octopus hook right there in the top of the mouth, right where you want it. We’ve got a palomar knot on there. It’s a great live bait knot, and it’s strong. And, these Gamakatsu octopus hooks.
Giles: It’s always fun when you put a hook N1.
Luke-Avery: That’s a hybrid. That’s a nice little hybrid. A good eating size hybrid. It’s good to keep this size here, because it’s a lot more sustainable for lake.
Oh yeah, that’s mine. I got that.
Striped bass and hybrid “hot action”
Luke-Avery: Oh yeah, that’s a nice one.
I’ve got one right here.
Giles: I know I looked behind me…
Luke-Avery: I’ve got this on record too.
Giles: This folks, is real life fishing, no editing.
Luke-Avery: Oh, Giles, the one in the back is going down. Have you got him?
That’s what you call some hot action. Oh my goodness, this one is going down too!
We’re about to have a quad. We’re going to have a quad.
Giles: Luke-Avery Urban, put a hook N1.
Luke-Avery: Catching some hybrid and striped bass on Beautiful Clarks Hill Lake. We’re doing pretty good.
Alright, there we go! Got it! That is a nice hybrid.
Giles: There it is.
Luke-Avery: And this my friends makes a limit out. Twenty fish on Clarks Hill Lake.
So, we’re out here at this boat ramp. We’ve just gotten our limit of hybrids and stripers and now we’re going to try for some noodling. Going to try to get a flathead.nude one, try to get a flathead. We’re going to try to get Giles on his first one. Gonna try to get his hand N1. But, it’s the first time of the year, I think its what, June second or third? This is our first noodling trip of the year. So, this is the ramp where I caught my first catfish noodling. We’re going to try and repeat some history.
Giles Canter: Let’s go put a hand N1.
Here on Clarks Hill. My first noodling trip… I put a hand N1. Thank you Luke-Avery Urban; Great Day on the lake. Caught some hybrid and a couple striped bass and the occasional crappie and finished the day off with a flathead.
Thanksgiving morning of 2016 will be one I will always remember. I sat quietly in my climber that morning overlooking the creek bottom that runs through the property. The sun came up and the thick fog that engulfed the hardwoods slowly lifted. It was a quiet and beautiful morning, and I felt blessed to be in the woods as the sun started hitting the forest floor. I had a case knife in my pocket… but more on that later.
There is not, and never has been for me, something as serene as sitting N1 of God’s carefully prepared landscapes, watching the sun rise and fall over you as the world awakens or quietly falls asleep. It is those times that I am reminded that no matter what is going on in the hustle and bustle that seems wrong, the sun is still going to come up, and the oaks will still drop their acorns the next day. In other words, nature doesn’t know of the hardships or blessings you may be experiencing. It just is, and it just does, exactly as it was told to do by God. That has always been reason enough for me to escape to the woods.
But, this morning in particular would prove to be one of even greater blessing. I was in the woods, with a Case knife in my pocket. So, here is where the story gets good…
When the fog lifts and the breakfast hits
At roughly 7:30 that morning the fog had finally lifted enough to have decent visibility. The animals around me had started their daily routines. I decided that I would rattle a couple minutes, in about 20-second intervals. For whatever reason, I like to grunt once or twice in between the rattle sequences. So that’s what I did, I rattled about 20 seconds and then waited about 20 seconds and then rattled again, so on and so forth. I did that for two minutes while hitting my grunt four or five times.
When I was satisfied that I had the attention of any buck around me, I quit and waited about 2 minutes and then I hit my doe bleat. In my head, that is when things get serious. If I was a buck I would be thinking, not only are two unknown bucks sparring on my property, they have a doe ready and willing with them. That’s my train of thought anyway. So, I put my calls down and waited.
That’s when it hit me. The sausage biscuit I had eaten an hour earlier had to have a final resting place… and it needed to get there in a hurry. I climbed down the tree and walked off about 20 yards and did the deed. I quickly realized that if I didn’t have a napkin in my pocket, then I was going to be leaving with one wool sock less than what I had arrived with! On a 37-degree morning, with wet boots, that didn’t seem like a good idea!
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Case knife life saver
Well, what’s a guy to do in such a predicament? I did the only thing I could think of… I pulled out my trusty Case knife and cut a square out of the front left leg of my flannel boxer shorts and my problem was solved. Always carry a case pocket knife N1 of your pockets when you go to the woods; you never know how useful it can be!
Big buck moment
I made my way up the tree and sat there thinking I had ruined my hunt. I thought about getting down but I thought to myself, nah, I’m here now, I may as well keep hunting. My Dad always said, “you can’t kill’em at home.” Well, It hadn’t been 10 minutes since I climbed back up the tree and 15 minutes since I quit my now certified “outdoors with Hunter Bennett proven rattling sequence” (for $29.95 retail price I will email you a demonstration video) that a doe came prancing into my area. She walked right beside the shallow leaf grave of the sausage biscuit, and she was very curious, looking around as if searching for the deer that were fighting and that lonesome and willing doe she had heard bleat a few minutes prior.
As I watched her I heard another deer coming in the same way as her, but this one was different. He was being very cautious! I could hardly hear him and would just catch glimpse of movement every so often.
In my mind, I knew it was a buck. I lifted my gun and managed to find him in my scope surrounded by a grove of young saplings. When I saw that one side of his rack had three tines that looked to be 10 inches tall, I knew he was a shooter. I moved my gun forward about 10 yards and found a hole to shoot in through the bushes. He finally made his way into that spot and I put the crosshairs on the center of his shoulder and gave him a lead deposit. He dropped in his tracks.
I was still unsure of exactly what I had killed. In my mind, I knew it was a big buck, I just wasn’t sure how big. I waited about 10 minutes. Without so much as a kick out of him, I decided it was safe to go check him out.
The rest is history. A fine morning to be N1 of my deer stands!
-By Hunter Bennett