Tuesday, November 28th
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The Ultimate Brush Pile Revisited

The Ultimate Brush Pile

While living on a lake with more brushpiles than way points I can put  on my GPS, has become quite a challenge. I have used PVC pipe in buckets with concrete which seems to be o.k. but doesn’t  seem to hold fish as does natural wood. But  great for the grandkids to fish, with little hang ups. I’ve also used the traditional brush with concrete blocks but depending on the size of the brush pile, just lays on the bottom. Trying to cover more of the water column, I’ve tried using plastic jugs to elevate the brush, but over a period of time, either broke loose or became water saturated.

Several years ago, I tried something that seems to work quite well with little time and money. The items needed: a heavy duty pallet, ( usually free if you know where to look ) 2 or 3 PVC toilet flanges, about $2.50 each.  A 5′ piece of 3″ PVC about $8.00 from the box store, 2- 3/4″ lag eye screws ($2.00 )  several concrete blocks or what I like to use 2 or 3 60lb. sacks of concrete premix, about $2.75 a bag. And a handful of deck screws and or 1/4″bolts and nuts.  A couple pieces of broom handle or 1/2″ PVC pipe cut as wide as the pallet , a heavy duty rope 30 to 40+’ long and finally any brush that will fit into the 3″ PVC.  I have found that some of the sycamores growing along the roadways work great.

Now for the instillation.  Set the pallet on the dock or where ever one plans to plant the pile.  I then secure the toilet flanges on the pallet using bolts, nuts or lag screws in the thickest part of the pallet for strength. Then I cut the PVC pipe 2 1/2 – 3′ ( depending on how many flanges are used ) and screw them into the flanges. Before it gets too heavy, I put 2 or 3 rollers, broom stick or pipe under the pallet. Screw the 2 lag eyes into one side of the pallet facing the water.  Then its time to install the brush into PVC sleeves, and I secure them in place with deck screws through the sleeve, into the brush/tree. At  the end of my dock, usually I have 17′ of water so some of my brush is 12- 14′ tall. Once this is all in place, I secure 3 or 4 concrete blocks or what I like to use bags of premix to the pallet. The premix doesn’t seem to break down over a period of time like the blocks.

We are now ready to set the brush in place. One needs a friend or very trusting wife to operate  the boat.(I’m assuming using your bass boat ) Pass one end of the rope through both eyes of the lag eye. The first one of these I built, I didn’t use the lag eyes and the rope, because of the weight, wedged between the slats of the pallet, which I couldn’t get undone.  With both ends of the rope in hand, slowly motor the boat till the lines get tight. I usually get at the transom end during  this. With a little jerk, the pallet rolls off the platform and lands parallel to the water. I then motor it to where I want, 15-30′ off the dock and let go of one end of the rope and pull it through eyebolts. If done right, it settles to the bottom with the brush covering many feet of the water column, from bottom to ?. I’m sure the same principle could work by building it on the shore and dragging it in place. Some of these have piles have been in place for three years and after checking with down imaging are still looking good. Get your crappie jigs ready and sharpen that filleting knife and it is no secret bass like to hang out by them too.

Yours in conservation, Jack Davis



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