Panfish and the Trout Slayer

Yeah. So, that’s my husband’s thumb pointed right at the camera. Hand model he is not, but he makes a pretty good fish holder while I try to take quick photographs of my tiniest catches before we release them. It’s a true team effort.

This fall, when water levels were higher than usual and we could not get out on the kayaks, we decided to try our hand (no pun intended) at bank fishing.

We decided to go to one of our favorite bank fishing spots, Rock Island State Park. Not only did we get to enjoy beautiful scenery, but we also managed to catch a variety of small and uniquely colored fish.

In mid-summer, James and I had taken a trip to Gatlinburg, Tennessee where we visited a small outfitter near the Little Pigeon River. We were introduced to something called a Trout Slayer. It is made by Trout Magnet, and is a small, naturally colored plastic bait paired with a very tiny hook.

We were initially told that Smallmouth Bass really like the Trout Slayer, but I have since discovered pan fish find this little bait irresistible.

I have been using 4 lb SOS line on an ultralight spinning rod and tossing the Trout Slayer without a float. Trout Magnet suggests you use a float, but my custom made rod has more than enough sensitivity so I can feel each nibble, no mater how tiny the fish.

Rock PerchRock Perch

One of my most interesting catches while using the Trout Slayer was this Rock Perch. I was not sure what it was at first, I actually thought I had caught a small stick when I first pulled the line up out of the water. To be so tiny, this little guy really went after the Trout Slayer.

Not only do the Rock Perch enjoy the little Trout Slayer, but so do it’s aquatic friends.

Me holding a small Rock Bass

All in all, bank fishing at Rock Island State Park is always fun and something we both look forward to doing when we have the chance.

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