Saturday, February 21, 2009

"You Caught My Fish"

I've been accused of worse... Sometimes the guide shows up the student but I assure you it was not done on purpose.

Our local weather folks have been having fits trying to predict what is coming and it seems like each day brings something new. We had one day with winds from three directions and temps first high then low and some rain in between.

Our Friday night outing to PPRV#7 started out with a meal of silver turtles cooked on the new fire pit. They came out perfect and I was burning my mouth trying to get mine down ASAP so I could start fishing. Last week Tracy caught a skipjack herring and I brought the fly rod to see if I could snag one or two.

Instead of the SJH I was happy to connect with a keeper trout on the first cast or two with my hand-tied glow in the dark glass minnow. I had to pull Tracy away from the kitchen to get this picture.

I fished the fly for a while and switched over to the double shad rig on the spinning rod. After catching some small specks and sandies, I cast parallel along the shore and caught this little flattie.

Tracy joined me and soon began catching her share of fish including this pretty speck. We both had fish on the stringer by 9:15 PM and I stuck with it a little later and added a couple more before calling it a night.

These four lined up nice at the cleaning table and will be on ice soon enough.

The camera doesn't do these fish justice but they really earn the name "Pretty Ones".

Saturday morning was overcast with a front on the way. I had to take a cast or two before breakfast and even though there weren't any fish working the surface like last week, I put on a lure to see if I could find a fish to fool. I wish I had a nickle for every time I've told others to check their gear before fishing and even more I wish I had followed my own advice.

I use a quick connect to attach lures and put the red/white MirrOdine on in a hurry without checking my leader. We had been fishing for several hours the night before and there is usually some abrasion or deterioration in the 20lb leader after catching several fish. I worked the 'dine (a suspending hard bait) along the front of the rocks and was greeted with a solid strike, hookup, and drag peeling run. Whether it was a redfish or a big trout I'll never know as it made a clean break on the first submerged rock it came to. The line appeared to be fatigued at the breaking point and I was speechless when I came back to the trailer to retie my line. "Don't ask me now...I'll tell you later" and some squeaking noises was all I could get out when Tracy asked for the details.

Here is a picture from Saturday with our latest setup - fire pit, picnic table, storage building and deck. Ahh - home sweet home.

After the front came through, the sun was out. There was a stiff north breeze blowing but the afternoon looked promising.

We took a ride to the beach but the sand was way too fluffy to try to drive. We stopped here at the locks to see if anyone was fishing and saw the local buzzard flock sitting in a protected corner to get out of the wind. They usually cover up the communication tower nearby but today decided to hang out on the ground. This is less than a mile from Pelican Point. Maybe we should call this Buzzard Bay.

All the signs were pointing at better weather. Even the little shower after lunch produced this beautiful rainbow. We looked comical running in and out of the trailer trying to get a picture.

The fishing was slow and I caught a couple of sand trout on gulp swimming mullet and chartruese jerk shad. I kept trying different things and finally caught this little multi-spot red.

I had so much fun with the topwaters last Saturday I tried again. I tied on this chartreuse headed black Skitterwalk and zig-zagged it across the choppy surface. The wind was pretty strong and it was hard to work it properly but I finally hit pay dirt with this nice dark colored speck.

These guys are fun to catch on top no matter how big they are.

Tracy came out and fished with me near the end of the day. I was hoping for the wind to settle down near sunset and wanted to try the tops again. I tied a pink headed white spook jr. on Tracy's line and coached her on proper walk-the-dog technique. I tried a dark spook and a couple other topwater selections. I had several boils but no real takes.

Before long I heard a splash and Tracy informed me that she had a fish on! I grabbed for the net but just that fast the fish came off. It appeared to be a nice trout so we kept fishing. The light was fading fast and if it was going to happen it had better hurry up.

I moved down the bank from Tracy and cast near the spot she had hooked her fish. You probably know what happened next... I caught her fish. I had switched to a bone spook jr. and the 20" speck inhaled the 3" lure. Tracy did a great job of getting me the net and before long we had her in the fish bag.

We kept at it and even though Tracy was flirting with repetitive motion syndrome, her efforts finally paid off. She heard a fish hitting bait on top and cast nearby. The 18" trout grabbed the pink lure and the fight was on. Way to go Tracy!

Time flies when you are having fun (and catching fish). Tracy fixed a light supper while I was at the cleaning table and before we knew it we were headed home to Needville. It was a nice quiet trip and one that we will both remember for a long time. Fish on!

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