Caught my biggest smallie ever tonight. From lip to tail it was the length of both the handles on my switch rod, which makes it about 20"- no pics, low cam battery. I was swinging a Dave's Bad Hair Day - Eat a Peach Sculpin in olive w/ copper and green flashabou on a #2 Gammy B10s. Bummed about not having a pic... The fish took mid-swing and put such a heavy thump in the rod I thought it was a steelhead at first. This is my second "big" smallie this year. These big guys are awesome but seem to run out of gas pretty quick compared to their smaller 14"+ brothers. Just prior to landing this guy I had brought in a ~14 incher that had my reel singing and was doing acrobatics all over the river.
I also landed what could easily have been my smallest smallie ever today. It was my first fish of the evening. I was working top water with a "Warmwater Whammy". The fly measures out to be about 3.5 inches and the fish was just a tad bigger.
My guess is that these bigger fish in the system right now are post-spawners trying to pack on the pounds before heading back out to wherever they come from.