Went out Saturday morning for a couple of hours on the GMR. Fishing was slow and spotty as I waded 5 different spots. The first two holes produced nothing. The third hole produced two smallies around 12 or 13 inches. The fourth hole by a bridge brought only a dink, but I did have decent one swirl on my bait about 3 feet away from me. I think the fish caught a glimpse of me when it came up and spooked after it missed the pearl colored zulu I was throwing. It might have been around 14 inches. I moved up to the next section which is about dried up. A couple more weeks without any rain you'll almost be able to cross the river without getting wet. There was a little water to fish so I gave it try and got nothing. I decided I needed to find some deeper water. About 150 yards upstream there's an old tree that sits in the middle of the river. I caught a 20 inch smallmouth off this tree before and a 14 inch crappie the same day, using live bait in December one year. The only time you can see this old log is when the river is low and clear. You can just barely make out where the base of the log sits up highest to the surface. I make a few empty casts around the base. It's a long cast to reach this tree, maybe 40 or more feet. On about the fourth cast I thought I snagged the log at first. Then the snag moved slowly and steady to the right. I'm thinking northern pike at this time, since it didn't have the normal thumping of a smallmouth. My line moved back to the left and started coming to the surface out by the log. Then it happened, a big smallie leaped out of the water and the sun reflected off its golden bronzed side. Im sure my eyes lit up and were as big as half dollars. The fish came out of the water one more time while I was bringing it in. I was fishing off the shore at the time, but waded through the weeds on the side of the river so I could land this fish cleanly, Im glad I was wearing waders at the time. While Im fighting the fish about 5 feet from me, there two other smallmouth about 13 or 14 inches long chasing along side of the fish I have hooked. I pull this fish out the water and took a good look at it. It was a beautiful fish with no markings, and had a golden bronze color. This fish was FAT ! , it looked like it was ready to spawn; it had a stomach that looked like there was a baseball inside. I looked down the fishs gullet and there was tail from a bait fish in its throat, it had to belong to like a 6 or 8 inch shad. I measured the fish out at 18 inches. Not the longest smallmouth out the river this year for me, but it was the heaviest. It was pushing 4 pounds. I caught a 20.5 inch smallie on a black buzz bait in July, bit it was nowhere close to the thickness of this latest bruiser. I would have to say that this was in my top 10 best of smallmouth out of the GMR, as far as weight goes. I made a few more casts out by the old log to see if there were any more like this one, but didnt have a hit. I decided to call it the morning after that one. I still have a smile on my face. Later that day, me a buddy canoed 2 miles north of my house and went catfishing. We started just before dark. We were using creek chubs for bait. Or at least I was and then I finally talked my buddy into switching baits. He was using bluegill cut bait and was getting a few bites but he wasnt catching anything. He then switched to night crawlers and caught a nice rockbass, but still no catfish. By this time I was getting all kinds of hits using creek chubs cut in half. By this time I had caught 3 channel cats, the biggest being close to 4 pounds. Finally my buddy switched over to creek chubs and caught a channel over 5 pounds, maybe 6. Nice cat for the river stretch we were fishing. Then I caught a soft shell turtle. As we were packing things up to canoe back to my house in the dark, I forgot I still had my line out in the water. I hear a clanking noise next to the canoe, its my rod. I manage to catch this one, about 2.5 pounder right before we left. So I ended up with 4. The canoe ride back to my house was an adventure, since my buddy didnt bother to bring his headband lamp. The only light was the flashlight I was wearing on my head. We did pretty good making it back down to my house in one piece. There were a lot of fish in the shallow water, 6 to 8 inches. I can only assume they were carp, they would churn up the water and make huge wakes as we were dragging the canoe through. My buddy almost stepped on one of those big dogs. We got up the next morning and we waited for the sun to warm up a little since it was in the mid 30s and we were in no hurry. Drove about 3.5 miles north of my house and put in the canoe for a morning \ afternoon float. We floated for probably a good 5 hours before we got back to my house. My buddy caught the most and the biggest. He caught 10 smallmouth, the biggest about 15 inches. I think that was his first fish too. He had a pike about 24 inches long bite him off. We were both using pearl colored Zulus all day. He had a couple of hits on the zara spook, but no hook ups. I caught 8 smallmouth and one largemouth. Biggest smallmouth for me was 14 inches and the largemouth went maybe a pound. So fishing is still slow. The fish that did bite seemed to be aggressive, since sometimes they would hit a bait twice. As we all know the water is still clear and low. A little rain sure would help. On a side note, I caught a grass carp out behind my brothers house in a community pond that went in the 12 to 15 pound range. I was using a little piece of bread on a tiny hook trying to catch some bluegills for cut bait Saturday night. It was a fun weekend.