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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Finally have some time to post some pictures from this weekend.

Had this trip planned for a couple months, as always you gotta worry about weather and boat issues when you have guys traveling long distances to come to shoot but just about everything turned out perfect. Weather was amazing and boat preformed flawlessly.

Joe from American eagle bows drove 7 hours Thursday morning from maine down to my place and we hit the road running. Luckily we avoided the Baltimore and DC traffic getting down to the hotel around 9pm. Unpacked and hit the water. Conditions were perfect with a good tide and water clarity. Didn't take long to get on some goldfish, carp, gar and catfish in short order. Joe managed to shoot his first catfish ever. After the long day of driving we decided to call it a night and fished our way back to the launch. Checked a small cove and had a couple decent carp take off then I saw a nice snakehead sitting shallow but joe was too fast and made a great long shot on one of the carp. I managed to make a good shot on the snakehead to fill out the potomac slam. cleaned up and got some needed sleep.

Ken (deep_predator) flew in from Illinois around 12 Friday but unfortunately had a complication with the rental car place finally getting to our hotel around 3 or so. We talked and grabbed some dinner, unfortunately he was beat from working the night before and flying plus had to pick his cousin tony flying in from Missouri at 10. So they decided to head down to the bay while me and joe hit the potomac again. Fish just wernt there Friday night but we managed a few goldfish and gar. Joe managed to shoot his first gar then continue to lay the smack down on 4 more in short order. I managed a nice orange and black goldfish that matched my American eagle pretty nicely . Unfortunately Joe's arrows just couldn't connect on a goldfish but he dam close just about every shot. Once again we called it an early night.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
Saturday morning we drove down to the bay and met up with Ken and tony. The trip started great for tony as he was surprised by Joe with his new American eagle that tony had no idea he was getting. After waiting as long as tony did on the waiting list it was like watching a kid on Christmas. So we loaded up the boat and hit the water. . Perfect conditions with blue skies and next to no wind which doesn't happen very often on the Chesapeake bay. Tried on small creek where we had luck the year before. After a hour or so with no luck I was getting nervous and could see the other guys getting nervous looking at empty water. I made a call to another team I knew was shooting close by, they had slow report but had a some rays in the boat, was just about to head their direction when I saw ken shoot and heard the muzzy singing. FISH ON! once we landed that one it wasn't long and we were into the cownose thick with up to 3 on at a time and multiple times could of had all 4 of us on but figured 3 were enough chaos for us. Unloaded the barrel, took some pictures and went back to work on a few more before it slowed down. called it quits around 5 to go get cleaned up with lots of confidence for Sundays tournament. We ended up with 20 Cownose but they were good rays with multiple 40+ lbers with the largest being 48lbs. I knew if I could repeat that kind of weight in the tournament we would definitely be in the running.

Saturday night we met up with a few of my friends teams and a wild game cookout with venison, smoked goose wrapped in bacon, fried snakehead, bass, frog legs and stripped bass. Everyone had a great time and we all left with full bellies.

Sunday we headed over to the tournament. Blast off at 7am and we were in a treat. We headed out of the marina in front of about 30 of the 36 boats into the river which was as smooth as glass. Passed an anti filming us at about 45mph and within 10 mins at our spot we did so good the day before. Shot the first one in a the first 15 mins then nothing. Rays were deeper then the day before and with the sun so low it made it just about impossible to see them. We popped around a few spots and covered some serious water before finding a picket of rays in super shallow. Shot a few before we must have spooked them off. Being around noon we headed back to our first spot to see if it was better in the afternoon like it was the day before. Right when we pulled up me and Ken both shot two nice rays that would definitely help. Then nothing again. Kept covering water till finally around 1pm we got into them with rays everywhere. Luckily we put a few more in the boat to upgrade our big 5. Still didn't have the big rays that we had the day before but we knew we did better than most. Fished hard till the last possible minute and made the run back to the tournament site with 5 mins to spare. We ended up in 6th place out of the 36 teams which we were happy with being a bunch of out of staters going against mostly locals. Overall very well run tournament. And a great time.
 

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Looks like a good weekend!!!. Hope to get on a few rays this weekend. You guys ever have issues with your pins breaking on your reels when shooting rays? What size line are you using for them?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
Looks like a good weekend!!!. Hope to get on a few rays this weekend. You guys ever have issues with your pins breaking on your reels when shooting rays? What size line are you using for them?
When you shoot let them take a little line and get the boat headed their direction before engaging the reel. Plus keep the drag on the light side. You can tighten it up during the fight but the first initial run will smoke the drag, break the pins, or break the line if your drag is set up too high for sure. Any of the bowfishing spinner lines will work. The thinner ones are nice as you can get more on the reel for thpse long runs they make especially when they run behind the boat and your trying to gdt the boat turned around. Fast flight and thicker lines are good that you can grab it a little easier while gaffing the fish (making sure to let go when the ray takes off of course and never getting it wrapped up in your hand or fingers).

You have anybody experienced in shooting rays going with?
 

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Joe is hooked i talked with him last night for a bit, Sounds like you guys had a great time
 

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Wow, I don't know what's better. This story or finally being able to post!!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
How did you get the deck that dirty with only 12 Rays lol looks like you guys had a blast
Haha 12 then Unloaded the barrel and went back to work on another barrel, then Sunday we filled the barrel then did all the culling for biggest 5 weighing them. Then went back to work shooting more. Next trip I'll bring the big 110 gal feed tank so we can take care of them in their instead of on the walk arounds or deck
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I couldnt figure out how I recognized that one Feller....its JOE!!!Awesome pics,and time!Great little bows those A.E's huh?
Yep I've had mine fore a year and I havnt shot another bow since. Even picked up a new osprey to check out and play with and it hasn't been set up yet haha. Joe is a good guy and had a great time
 

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Haha 12 then Unloaded the barrel and went back to work on another barrel, then Sunday we filled the barrel then did all the culling for biggest 5 weighing them. Then went back to work shooting more. Next trip I'll bring the big 110 gal feed tank so we can take care of them in their instead of on the walk arounds or deck
We are trying to figure out how to fit the 220 gallon cattle trough in our boat, But looked like you all had a good weekend,wish we could have caught up with you guys maybe sometime in future. Really love that barrel full of good looking bows....

What kinda weight you end up with??? And what won the tourney??? I know the Reedville big 3 was close with top 6 or so less than 5# normally
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
We are trying to figure out how to fit the 220 gallon cattle trough in our boat, But looked like you all had a good weekend,wish we could have caught up with you guys maybe sometime in future. Really love that barrel full of good looking bows....

What kinda weight you end up with??? And what won the tourney??? I know the Reedville big 3 was close with top 6 or so less than 5# normally
We ended up with 203 for our big 5. Winning team had 239 which is just crazy. 47 and change average. They blew everyone out of the water. Top 2nd-8th were between 222 and 200.
 

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When you shoot let them take a little line and get the boat headed their direction before engaging the reel. Plus keep the drag on the light side. You can tighten it up during the fight but the first initial run will smoke the drag, break the pins, or break the line if your drag is set up too high for sure. Any of the bowfishing spinner lines will work. The thinner ones are nice as you can get more on the reel for thpse long runs they make especially when they run behind the boat and your trying to gdt the boat turned around. Fast flight and thicker lines are good that you can grab it a little easier while gaffing the fish (making sure to let go when the ray takes off of course and never getting it wrapped up in your hand or fingers).

You have anybody experienced in shooting rays going with?
Thanks for the info. I was always worried about breaking the line. I've been shooting rays for a couple years know. I was told that spinners will break pins so stick with bottle reels. But I'm going to give my muzzy a shot and see what happens.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Thanks for the info. I was always worried about breaking the line. I've been shooting rays for a couple years know. I was told that spinners will break pins so stick with bottle reels. But I'm going to give my muzzy a shot and see what happens.
I've shot cownose and average size southerns the last few years with spinners. Definitely would bring an extra reel or two just in case. And I've yet to get a real big southern but don't think it would be a problem as long as you get the boat following the fish
 

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We do BIG southerns pretty regular and shoot AMS retrievers with extended bottles and about 50 yds of 400# fast flight. We don't mess with floats or the slotted retrievers which are a pain in azz, another key is if you can get 2 arrows in them from the start if have time for 2 shooters to connect...

We fought a 90# + Ray for 15 minutes or more this past weekend, looked like a pincushion with 4 arrows in it at one time, started with 2 in it got 3rd, then 2 pulled out, then got 4 in it.... Was trying to horse it off the bottom after buried in the bottom. Key on the big ones is to break that first hard run and stop them
 
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