Riverkeeper Jeff Turner collected many bottles and other garbage that people littered into the river. -- Submitted | Jeff Turner
Riverkeeper Jeff Turner collected many bottles and other garbage that people littered into the river. -- Submitted | Jeff Turner

Archived Story

Awaken the Largemouth!

Published 10:47am Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Spirit of Moonpie and I spent the 23rd through the 25th on the Blackwater below the Steel Bridge.

Trash collected on the Blackwater River near Burdette. -- SUBMITTED | JEFF TURNER
Trash collected on the Blackwater River near Burdette. — SUBMITTED | JEFF TURNER

The water was 50 degrees and it was high and fast at 7.83 on the USGS gauge at Burdette. Air temps ranged from 27 to 63 degrees. It also snowed on me again, and I’m getting tired of that. I was very surprised at how great the fishing was. I caught so many bass I lost count, but I’m guessing about 20. They were all small, weighing up to about a pound and a half. I also caught a nearly citation chain pickerel that weighed 3.12 pounds and was 23 inches long. All were caught on a No. 2 Mepps Minnow in very shallow water. I also caught a few small speckle and a couple of bowfin both caught on the blade bait jigged vertically.

That was the good part of the trip, now for the bad. I was stunned at the amount of trash I picked up out of the river below Burdette. Styrofoam worm boxes and dozens of corks littered the river. Most of this stuff is coming from shore fishermen right there at the Burdette Bridge. I’m also sure the copious amount of beer bottles and similar items are coming from them as well. It seems the “No Littering” signs I had VDOT put up there are not doing any good, but then I guess those folks that are doing the littering need to have the mental capacity to read the sign.

All this stuff was caught up in two large log jams downriver from the Burdette Bridge. They are so thick Moonpie could get out and walk on them and not touch water! If I had a jet boat like the Shelby dude on that “Swamp People” TV show I could get in there and bust those jams up. But then I guess if I busted up all the log jams I would not be able to recover as much trash as I do on the two rivers we call the Blackwater and Nottoway.

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