The Lavaca River. 11/24/15.

 Fish Catching Travel


The best baits on the planet!

There are 2 places I have not fished yet this fall, Baffin and the Lavaca River, and I got one of them done today.  November is always a solid month on the Lavaca and I was excited as I headed to the river.  There were 6 or 7 trucks at the ramp when I got there. I almost put it  back on the trailer and went to Garcitas, it looked that off-color.  So on with the big boy pants and in the water goes the Carolina Skiff.  Beside catching fish, part of this deal is to report to those of you who care what is happening with the fishing, good or bad.

The water color looked terrible, real dirty, until I took off my amber Polaroids, and then it only looked like crap.  The water was off-color with that murky shade that is not on my favorite list.  But with that many trucks at the ramp obviously the fish are in there somewhere.

First it was the Navidad, which has  my favorite bank on the river.  The water color was real murky and the first place did not even produce a bite.  So I motored up river a ways to see if it cleared any, which it didn’t, and I fished another spot that usually produces some reds and again, no bites.  So definitely time for a move.

The wind was blowing pretty good as I motored down river and stopped just past the power lines to fish the south bank.  That area is usually pretty productive and finally one committed suicide.


The best one for the day.

The water was just a little bit better, but the wind did not help much.  I put 4 in the boat on that stretch, which has some sand and bare bank.  They seemed to like the chicken on a chain color with a chartreuse paddle tail.  All my bites came in 4 foot of water give or take an inch.  Since the bite was not all that hot I flipped sides of the river and fished the big sand flat further on down.  It was only one bite there, but I did put it in the boat.


This is what most of them looked like.

The next place I wanted to check was the mouth of the slew entering the river near the big house down river.  The tide was flowing out, and the water coming out of the slew was at least somewhat clear.  The wind was blowing right in it and there was a color break and I caught 3 there, most like the one above.

I did fish several colors and styles of plastics but the 3″ paddle was the clear choice.  It was difficult to fish due to the high winds, you just had to suck it up.  And though it was howling I did want to check the bank at the mouth of the lake and so I headed down and stopped just short.  I only caught one there, and since it was blowing I headed back up.


You always hope when you set the hook these are a trout.

I think I caught one more after that back up river, and one rat red.  So today could only be described as a wash.  I fished about 5 hours, but just could not get over the water color, my heart was not in it.  But the point is the fish are there, and they can be caught.  If we do not get a whole lot more rain maybe it will clear some, but they may be letting water out of Texana.  This was one of those days where I wish someone would have been with me, to motivate me to fish harder, but really to keep trying different colors and weight.  So don’t write it off if you like to fish it, they can be caught.

A young guy who fishes it some talked to me at the ramp and he said he has been catching them off and on.  His cousin fished it yesterday and had a good day with redfish.  The water color does not deter the reds and with a little effort you can catch them right now.


Johnny sent us this report from he trip to Fayette this last weekend.

Just about got blown off of Lake Fayette this weekend. It was windy, cold, and miserable for us fishing fools. Was able to catch fish at the discharge, the dam, and by the trees along the creek. Spinner bait, crank baits, and soft plastics did not let me down. It was a challenge, but got it done.

The plant was not running so the water temp was between 66 and 71 degrees. Be back again next year.

Have a Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanks for the report.  Sounds like you had to really struggle with the wind, which can be a real hassle on Fayette.  But on the flip side sounds like you caught fish in most places and on several baits, a real Fayette day.  I hope to get up there soon before it gets to dang cold.  So keep those reports coming, we appreciate them.


I really want to wish all of you a Happy Thanksgiving and hope you get to spend some time with the family, and maybe even a little bit in the outdoors.  I will be fishing tomorrow with my brother the Shoedog in College Station, then Thanksgiving day I will be sitting in a blind all day trying to put a nice fat doe in the freezer.

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Maybe they will stop by while I am there.

My lovely wife works the holidays as she does most years to let folks with kids have the time off.  She will be off on Friday and we will have our personal Thanksgiving sitting in front of the TV watching those HOGS!  So have a great holiday, I can not thank you all enough for your participation, it keeps me going.  Keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.

Happy Thanksgiving

Good Luck and Tight Lines

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Thought I was going fishing. 11/23/15.

 Fish Catching Travel


The best baits on the planet!

I just thought I was going fishing today.

The lovely wife and I had breakfast and then I headed out to the garage to hook up the Skiff and head to the river.  One thing I do before I ever leave the house with the boat is hit the key and make sure it will turn over.  I hit the key, and nothing, and I mean not even a click or any attempt to turn over.  Why?  I do not have a clue.  So on the charger it went and the day of fishing turned into a day of running around and doing things.

What made the whole thing funny is the Mako did not want to start the other day, and the battery needed to come out and be checked.  So instead of hitting the river, I have one boat on the charger because something must have been left on, and the other boat’s starting battery is in the truck to get checked out.  The good news, it was just the connections on the Mako and the battery checked out fine.  So it is going back in that boat, and from the looks of the rate of charge the starting battery on the Skiff is fine.  Still wish I knew why it was empty this morning.

Just one of those moments that can either ruin your day, or you can suck it up and go on.  So I got some things done that were planned for Tuesday and will be headed out first thing in the morning to keep whipping on those trout.


I got this comment from Jay, and though it was short notice, it applies to all of us for the rest of the winter.

Sorry this is short notice.
Might want to remind your readers.
It’s scheduled to be the first mild freeze of the season here in Central Texas tonight.
It’s the season to remember to lower those motors after fishing to allow water to drain. Might save you some money and prevent damage and lost time on the water due to repairs!

Thanks for reminding all of us, when you pull out of the water be sure to let the engine down as far as you can so the water can run out.  And one thing to add to that.  If you have not checked or changed your lower unit grease lately it is time to do that.  It is the best way to be sure you do not have water in the lower unit, which not only can ruin your lower unit costing big bucks, but can freeze.  I had a friend who let it slide, and when we got a real cold snap it actually cracked his lower unit housing.  And while you are at it check those bearing buddies to be sure there is no water in there.  We have a lot more winter on the way so be warned.  As an old plumber told me there is only one place water will not get, a frog’s a$$.  Thanks Jay, great tip.  Feel free to comment anytime.


I looked at the Academy flyer for Black Friday and they have a Shimano Sonora spinning reel that is normally $49 for $19, which is a real good deal.  There is also a Lew’s combo deal that is usually $150 that is $99.  I do not know anything about the rod, but their reels are sure getting more popular now.  And last, their in-house reel brand, H2O, is on sale at half price, $25.

I have been using them for several years now for saltwater fishing.  Why?  Instead of spending $100′s on upscale reels I buy these cheap ones and use them until they start acting up and then in the trash they go.  The last time I had one of my Shimano’s cleaned and bearings done it was $50, and as much as I fish that had become an every 6 month thing.  The cheap H2Os do just fine, and most last over a year, so I just buy 3 or 4 when they get to $25 and it is working out.


My Razorbacks played one heck of an offensive game, to bad the defense did not show up.  And to lose it on a missed field goal was tough.  Congrats to the Aggies, they beat Vandy and only played one quarterback.  I got to watch a little but am not sure how they played over all, but those helmets sure were something.

Sorry about no fishing report, but that will change tomorrow.  I think it will be the Lavaca River.  I have not made it yet but the trout should be stacked in there.  So keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.

Good Luck and Tight Lines

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Coleto Creek 11/20/15.

 Fish Catching Travel


Catch a couple of new baits today!

After a long run of bay fishing it was time to check in on Coleto and the bass fishing.  It also gave me a chance to fish with Voe before he is out of here and back to Vegas.  He finally got the work done on his house and it finally listed and will be showing Monday.  With the amount of work they did on that place I predict a sale in less than a month.  But I digress.

The lake appears to be rising slowly, and the water color varies between somewhat clear to murky the farther up lake you go.  The weather started off with a little cloud cover and light wind, perfect bass fishing weather.  But alas, Coleto is still really inconsistent for me and though we caught a few, 11 to be exact, I still have not found a real pattern.  So we spent the day looking and trying different stuff.


Voe with the first fish of the morning.

We started off with buzzbait in main lake coves.  Voe caught the one above right off the bat, and then in spite of my repeated throws off and on all day it turned out to be the only one on a buzzbait.  That has been kind of frustrating to me as it and spinnnerbait are just not working like falls past.  So we headed way up lake to fish wood with plastics, and though the fish were not tight to the cover, they will still close to it.


A nice 3 1/2 on plastics.

We kept hunting and pecking here and there.  It seemed one of us would get a bite, and then the other one would to.  Though we did not catch a bunch, the ones we did were fat and sassy.  We specifically took a picture of the one below to show you how fat they are.  I would suspect the one below had some eggs.  Hard as it is to believe pre-spawn is right around the corner.


Look at the gut on that thing.

Besides plastics, Voe caught one on a scrounger head with a shellcracker plastic on it and one on a vibrating jig with a craw trailer.  Mine all came on plastics.  It was really interesting how when they hit they would start swimming with it, and I mean fast and far.  We missed several that swam so far it was hard to get the slack out for a good hook set.  We did have a couple of close encounters with what looked to be nice big fish.  Voe had one boil a slow rolled spinnerbait as he took it out of the water, and I had another one boil the heck out of a topwater.  For the day was both caught basically the same amount of fish, and most were ok keepers.

For me though it has been a struggle.  The fishing on Coleto has been tough and I have done a poor job of correcting that.  Insanity has often been described as doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result.  That is how I have fished the lake the last month, trying to hit a big bite before a front.  Expecting the fish to do what I want, when I say they should.  Then when they do not I keep doing it over and over.  I will have to think that one over for awhile.  Suffice to say we had an ok day and it is always nice to fish with Voe.


And while we are talking about fishing, when we went to Coleto to clean fish the other day there were a couple of guys cleaning fish, one guy with a bunch of crappies.  He said he got his in 14 – 23 feet of water on jigs.  They were good crappie, and I have been seeing lots at the lake the last few weeks.  So if you like crappie now is a good time and it will only get better the next month.  Additionally the guy fishes Sommerville as his regular fishing hole and said the bass fishing has been fantastic, not to mention the crappie fishing.  Shoedog and I really suck at that lakes so I guess it is time to give it another go.


One of the great things about the outdoors is how random stuff can be.  Shoedog has been hard after a good buck this fall, spending some serious time in the blind.  So of course what happens when he fishes with me a couple of days?

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   A nice solid buck.

This guy walked in front of the blind once in the morning and then in the afternoon at perfect shooting time.  Funny how stuff like that works.  It will be even funnier to see how it goes for me.  I hope to hunt Thanksgiving day and try to kill a fat doe for the freezer.  It has been about 20 years since I shot a deer, but I sure do like venison and tators smothered in mushroom soup, one of my favorite meals.


It is Saturday morning and as I write this it is time to get excited about another Arkansas Razorback football game.  Somehow my Hogs have won 4 in a row, with 2 over SEC west opponents, on the road.  And here we are, second in the West behind Alabama after basically whipping LSU’s booty.  It was similar last year with the Hogs getting tougher as time went on, and that sure is the case right now.  But even if it goes our way the rest of the year we will still finish second.  As I tell all the delusional A&M fans, to win the west it still comes down to beating both LSU and Alabama in the same year.  No easy task.

The wind is howling as the cold front rolls in.  We will see the 30′s tonite with our first real front of the year.  My in-laws up in the middle of Iowa are getting a real taste of it as the rest of the Midwest is.  Looks like they got about a foot of snow and it is 19 degrees as I write this.  It sure looks pretty, but you can have the snow.  So what is next I do not know, but I will be back on the trout in a couple of days, depending on the wind.  I appreciate you all reading this stuff, so keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.

Good Luck and Tight Lines

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Garcitas Creek – The Beat Goes On. 11/19/15.

 Fish Catching Travel


Catch a couple of new baits today!

The beat goes on, at least the trout beatdown.  Our plan was to fish Garcitas Creek to see if the trout had made their way into the river, and they have.  Whether it is the bay, a reef, a creek, it does not seem to matter right now, the speckled trout are on the chew.  As I have said before, you hunters keep at it, I will cover the fishing thing.

We got to the river at 8 and there were 2 trucks with trailers in the lot.  During the day we saw several boats, and I want to say a word about the folks fishing.  Everyone idle by you, everyone was courteous, and that alone made it a great day on the water.   Speaking of the water it is a dark tannic color but not dirty.  With light winds, it was just a pleasant day to fish.

Starting about half way down  river we fished a long flat bank and maybe caught a couple.  We moved to a point and hit a real wad of them, maybe catching 15 or 20 pretty quick.  From there it was this place and that, catching a trout here and there, we had a couple of keepers about 12:00 and then hit the good place and filled out another solid limit of trout with 3 good reds added to the box.


Beautiful color out of the river.

Sorry there are no trout pictures but we planned on the old dead stringer at the cleaning table picture, but we just started cleaning fish and so no picture.  The limit was maybe a little smaller than yesterday.  We hit a bank quite a way down the creek and Shoedog caught a nice red, and I think I put another trout in the box.  After a minute with no bites I said turn around lets re-fish this, and we filled our limit of trout and caught 3 keeper redfish in nothing flat.


Headed to College Station on a half shell.

We were both throwing paddle tails, and for some reason today we both threw the Coocahee Minnow plastic, which I rarely throw , on a 1/16 or 1/8th jig head.   Dark colors and Chartreuse tails were the best.  Tossing it to the bank we hopped it up and let fall down the breaks, and when they hit it, they either smacked it, or knocked a bunch of slack in the line.  We both threw a little topwater and I threw a corky, without success.   The bite though on plastic was fairly consistent today.   We caught fish from when we started until we quit at 3.

We quit a little early today after we went to start the boat and it would not start.  It turned out to be the battery was not producing 12 volts when we tried to start it.  The Opti Max needs a minimum of 12 volts to start, but it will turn over and not start with less than 12.  I called Bob at Victoria Marine, and he gave us a couple of tips and one of them was spot on.  It was the positive connection which was very lightly corroded, so Shoedog cleaned it and it started.  We will just have to wait and see whether it turns out to be the battery is giving up the ghost.  At least we made it home. Nice to know we had Sea Tow if we needed it and Bob for advice.  So a big thanks to Bob at Victoria Marine, helpful as always.

 The trout in Garcitas are definitely  smaller than what we are catching in the bay.  Now since this was our first trip there this year we may have just not hit the perfect spot.  But we did catch an easy limit and lots of smaller ones with a couple small flounder, a few sand trout and a rat or two.  Funny how you can catch around 40 to who knows how many and it seems like you did not hit the perfect spot!  As you know I have been raving about the fishing, and anytime you move while catching speckled trout to find bigger fish you are having a good day.  If you have not been the last few weeks you are missing out, it is flat good.

Tomorrow it is off to the lake with my buddy Voe.  We have a weather change coming and one of these days on Coleto I will hit the front just right, hope that is tomorrow.  I still want to fish the Lavaca River and go trolling with Corbin.  So lets see how the weather cooperates.  No matter what I will be fishing, when it is this good, go, it will end.  So keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.

Good Luck and Tight Lines

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POC 11/18/15.

Fish Catching Travel


Catch a couple of baits today!

The Shoedog made an appearance today and we headed for the Gulf.  It has been awhile since I had a tough day on the bay, and today did not disappoint.  We headed out from POC to the flats around Army Hole.  The tide was perfect, high around  2 a.m. then falling most of the day.  It was really high and the water had a little color to it.  We jumped in and I headed down the bank and Shoedog hit the mouth of a cut. Once he went 7 bites on 7 casts and caught half a dozen in nothing flat I turned around and headed that way.  He was throwing a 4′ paddle tail and I was throwing a 3 1/2″.  They were knocking the stuffing out of it and it was a good mix of keepers and shorts.  In around 45 minutes he had limited.


Back to the boat for a coolor ride.

By time he got to the boat and emptied his stringer I joined him.  They were eating that paddle tail.


So I went and dropped off my limit too.

So here we are 45 minutes after we got here and we are limited.  We decided to stay awhile and fish so Shoedog went into the cut and I headed out on the flat.  He figures he caught another 25 trout in the next 3 hours before our move.  He also caught a few small flounder.


My best topwater trout for the day.

The wind was blowing fairly lightly  as I threw the topwater.  I caught a few trout smaller than the one above, and also a couple of rat reds on it.  It was just a little to nice as far as the weather went, and though they were hitting a walk the dog retrieve, it was clear they wanted the plastics.  A little wind and cloud cover would have helped the topwater fishing, but we both stuck to plastics most of the day.  Today I used a 1/16th jig head and a chicken on a chain paddle tail.  It was funny how many of the fish I caught in the middle of the day that hit were in a little less than 3 foot of water, as soon as the bait hit the water.


One of 2 Black Drum I caught today.

The other fish were near the grass edge, and the trout were a little farther out.  The current was blasting out and if you got your cast and drift just right it was bite after bite.  Finally I said lets move just for the sake of it, so we headed back to the old stomping grounds, Big Bayou.


A keeper flounder.  Yum.

We fished a couple of deep banks and the fish were there too.  We had a little trouble keeping them on, the tide was ripping and the wind was blowing the opposite direction making it a little tough to fish.  But we caught some nice trout, reds, and flounder.  With a nice limit of trout for a couple of Aggies in College Station we let everything go, but sacked the flounders.


Some good eating.

There really isn’t anything all that radical about the fishing lately, it is just a matter of keeping it in the water.  Plastics, topwater, fresh dead shrimp under a popping cork, it has all been working.  And wading and drift fishing are both working.  As the water cools I look forward to throwing the corky style baits.


My last red, a real borderline, his lucky day. 

We ended up calling it a day around 4 p.m.  I have been raving about the fishing the last couple of months, and I am not exaggerating, it is as consistent as I have experienced since coming to Texas 7 years ago.  Of course it may have a little something to do with us getting the hang of it, but it is more than that.  But still, we caught fish almost all day, just as we have done most every trip the last 6 or 7 weeks.  It really does seem that the populations have grown some and the size length is also up.  A falling tide all day, plus the good fall bite, add up to some of the best fishing of the year.  If you have any thoughts of hitting the bay, do it.  It does not stay this good forever.

Hopefully there are not to many editing errors, but I am tired and going to hit the sack.  It will be up before daylight and off to Garcitas Creek.  Both it and the Lavaca River should be holding fish, and it won’t take long to figure that out.  And after the Shoedog leaves it will be a day of somewhere with Voe, and then baring rain it might be some fishing with my buddy Jeffish and his son, Corbin, future best fisherman to ever live.  So keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.

Good Luck and Tight Lines

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They are biting! 11/16/15.

 Fish Catching Travel


Buy more baits, you can never have enough!


Happy Birthday to my daughter Carrie!  You could not make me any prouder!


Remember I told you those Austin Boys don’t need any help catching fish?  They knocked the crap out of them today!

I  was lucky enough to fish with the Austin Boys the first couple of days of their 3 day POC trip and we caught them good Friday, then they finished out their trip on Saturday.  I was anticipating hearing how they did and boy did they get it right.  Guess I should have got my candy ass out of bed Saturday.


Todd with the ones that would not fit in the cooler and had to stay on the stringer in the live well.

Why would those not fit in the cooler?  Because of this -


  A beautiful sight until they don’t clean themselves.  That is some serious weight.

Todd was kind enough to let us know that they all basically came drifting Pringle on shrimp.  As I told you last time, he is really getting into using fresh dead shrimp.  He tears them in half and puts them below a weighted popping cork and throws that thing a mile, and boy does it work.


2 really big mullet that came out of the belly of a 24″ speck.

If you notice, those mullet are just about the size of a topwater or a corky style bait.  There are always several ways to catch them, and the boys sure figured it out today.  He did give me a little crap because his text said they had the music blasting, which I just think messes up my delicate Feng Shui.   Congratulations boys, that is one heck of a stinger.  And I will be looking forward to seeing you all at Fishmass 15′.

Our fishing has almost been to good to be true the last 2 months, and it is getting better if that is possible.  The back lakes, smaller bays, creeks, and rivers are all heating up.  This is one of the better stretches of fishing since I have been in Texas, and I can not wait to get back out there.  The Shoedog will be here tomorrow and it looks like it will be one of those 3 days things, as we may even stay down in POC so we don’t have to drive back and forth.


The duck hunting report seems to be spotty at best.  As we were fishing the other day a guide boat came out of one of the back lakes and I asked him how it went.  He said “just some Red Heads”.  My response to that is they are ducks aren’t they.  I do know I am not hearing quite the volume of shooting early, but this front coming today may change that.

I finally got a few pics from my buddy Chris who is a die hard duck hunter.


A few birds, his lovely wife, and Link, the important part of the operations.


They seem to be killing them right along at their lease.

Chris likes to duck hunt like I like to bass fish, and once the season starts he hits them as hard as he can.  When he sent me  these pictures he sent along this comment……

Been off/on.  Strange start to the season with both the warm weather and lack of agriculture.

Looks to me like you guys are doing just fine.  Those of you hunting the bay there is no better time for a Cast and Blast, though it is usually a Blast then Cast, but I guess it sounds better the other way.  Thanks for the pics and send some anytime.


 I got this report from Johnny who is a Coleto regular.

Congratulations on your catch in Port O’Connor for POC.

A buddy and I were at Coleto Creek today.  Caught nothing on moving baits.  Changed to plastics on hardwoods and had better luck.  Caught about 10.  Of course we released them with the understanding that they are to bite our lines next time. They promised they would!

Keep on writing.

From your report the lake has not changed any since I fished it last time.  At least you boated a few.  Back to the old saying – “A bad day of fishing is better than a good day at work.”  The lake will straighten up at some point this winter.  Thanks for the report and we love hearing from you.


And I wanted to share this comment I got from Jim in Austin.

After mentioning to the hubby of my daughters coach that I had an interest in Golf he said “Well sometime you can go with me and we will drop a ball in the fairway and you can play from there”  I did a really good job and he said you have a natural swing and this and that you should get started.  Well I checked into it and discovered that I for sure could not afford to play golf.  As I am a migrant to the state from the Bayou’s of Louisiana I looked back at fishing.  Now this story stimulated by your loss of a buzz bait you had just tied on the line.  You see where this story is going?  I have well over 1K into my fishing endeavor and still purchasing or maintaining.  I am NOT looking into golf but I do have the cart if that counts.

Fishin’ is way mo’ better than golf, but I am not sure it is any less expensive!  We just keep spending that money and it never seems to end.  To bad that cart doesn’t float, you could get a cool wrap, with matching shirt and hat, and then put a trolling motor on it and be a real pro.   Thanks for your comment and I feel your pain.


Just got this comment from Jim and now his comment makes a whole lot more sense!

Mr Redfishlaw, I read the note I sent to you concerning the money spent for fishing compared to Golf and noticed a minor error.  That is 100K I have spent on fishing not 1K, I should have audited prior to clicking the Post Comment key
Thanks and be safe out there.

Now I really feel your pain, and that is a little more like it!


I have to run to Austin to get a little car maintenance, and maybe a drive by to Cabela’s today, then some serious fishing is on the way.  The little cold front that is coming today will only help matters, and I am so looking forward to working on that windy topwater pattern.  It feels like Larry Dahlberg’s show, The Hunt for Big Fish.  The goal is to finally break 30″ as I have been stuck at 29″ 3 or 4 times.  Why that extra inch matters so much I do not know, but it does.

Please keep those comments and pictures coming.  Not only do we all enjoy seeing and hearing what you have to say, we learn something from each if them.  So keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.

Good Luck and Tight Lines

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POC 11/13-14/15.

Fish Catching Travel


The best baits money can buy.

Though it does not often work out it is really nice to fish with folks I do not get a chance to fish with that often.  That really pertains to the bunch I call the Austin Boys.  They come down a few times a year in different combinations and I am humbled to be asked to join their gang.  This trip it was Todd, Pete, Mateo, and my favorite of the whole bunch, Orlando.  What a hoot.

One thing Todd and his bunch have down absolutely pat is bringing the crappy weather with them.  They have had some awful weather luck on some of their trips.  How they manage that one I will never know, but in the face of a 20 mph north wind and a cold front, which is the least it blows when they come, they hit it hard.  Rarely does it keep them from catching fish and this time was no different.  And what made this trip a real success for me is the fishing allowed me to spend some time doing what I have neglected on the bay, but we will get to that later.

When they come down this time of year they always stop on the way to POC to make a quick run up the barge canal to the BP docks to catch some trout.  So I met up with them at Seadrift and we got to the docks at around 2:30.  The canal is still dingy from the flood, but the further up we went the clearer it got.  I was really interested in whether the trout were there or not.  With this extended warm weather I was not sure if the big bunch had moved into their deeper winter haunts, which also applies to rivers and creeks this time of year.

The fishing turned out to be slow.  We caught maybe a dozen and ended up keeping 4 or 5 trout and 1 flounder, all caught on plastics.  The ones we did catch were on the drop into deeper water.  So with our late arrival, the warmer water for this time of year, the tide, or whatever else, it was slow.   But we bagged a few and their trip was started.  We will just have to wait and see about all that as far as the barge canal goes.  I suspect the real cold front we have coming this week will put those fish in their winter haunts and it will be as good as it always is.

The next morning I got to their house at daylight.  As usual they were a little worse for the wear from the things boys do when they are out loose without the wife.  But they mustered up, we put on the wading gear and off we went.  As a side note, it is so amazing when you get to the ramp at 7 on a friday in POC and you are the 4th truck in the lot.  That only happens during deer season and hurricanes. What turned out to be our first and only stop was the flat off Army Hole.  Keep in mind the wind was blowing a cold 20 mph right on the flat and the rollers alternated between 1 and 3 feet tall all day.  The water was a little off-color but not to bad, and the tide was just beginning to fall.  It would normally not be my choice, but the results highlighted what little I really know about trout fishing.

I headed into the cut and proceeded to catch about 20 trout, though only one was a keeper.  With my superior skill I managed to lose a really good one, which was a sign of things to come.  I was throwing plastics as were Pete and Mateo.  Todd and Orlando were both fishing fresh dead shrimp, a technique Todd learned on his last trip.  They would tear the shrimp in half, put it on one of those heavy ass popping corks and throw it a country mile.  It works, Todd figures he caught about 50 today, and if you want a way to help folks catch fish with you that is one sure way to do it.

Pete, Mateo, and Todd started out on the flat catching one here and there, some of them good fish.  After a few hours we met at the boat and made the decision to make a stand.  Now to my point about what I learned.  After the Shoedog caught the 6 1/2 trout in three foot rollers in off colored water in Baffin I have wanted to spend some time fishing topwater in conditions I would normally not fish it.  So I headed out on the flat, Todd and Mateo headed with their dead shrimp to the cut, and Pete and Mateo took off down the flat.

I kept wading at a pretty good pace until all of a sudden a real monster, probably my biggest trout ever at POC, just blew up on it and missed.  I kept it coming and then she came out of the water and just thrashed all over it and I made the fatal mistake – I freaked out and set the hook though she did not have it.  And she was gone.  Dang it!  But I settled down and the serious work started.  Instead of whining about it, well maybe a little bit, it fueled my desire to keep after it.

So much of the time I get wrapped up in being sure I get some fish on the camera for the blog that I do not spend time really expanding my knowledge like I should.  It is a rough life.  It was nice to let them sack them up for the famous Fishmass Party coming next month and I took off and spent the majority of my day fighting the big wind and tossing the topwater.



The haul.  Sorry these are not that hot but I did not want to take the time to take pictures out there, the fishing was to good.

It is rare I stick to something that is unfamiliar to me and not revert back to the sure thing, which in this case was plastics.  It was one bite, then another on the topwater, but of the first 8 bites it was one keeper trout and a couple of rat reds.  As it got later they started to really eat it.  Not sure how many bites I got in that high wind and rolling seas, but it was enough to fill my limit of nice trout and throw a few back not to mention how many I missed.  Using the walk the dog retrieve at a fairly rapid rate, it was interesting how they wanted it cast either directly into the wind or parallel to the waves, but nothing with the wind.  If you think about it, whatever they were eating was going with the wind and they were facing that way waiting for it.

You often hear the old adage, find the bait, find the fish, and late in the evening it really came true.  I saw small bait fish flipping here and there so I waded over and it was game on.  The trout around them were not just swinging at it like earlier, these were eating.  One interesting thing that happened was I yelled at Pete and Mateo to come over and they fished right next to me and could not buy a bite fishing plastic while I was getting bit.  There is a lesson there, but what it is I will have to think about.  But the real point is that wind or not, they will hit that topwater in conditions most of us would not throw it.  Of course there is one serious side effect, time to perfect that pattern.  Many of the big fish caught on the coast in the winter are caught that way, windy shoreline on topwater.  You can guess what I will be doing this winter.  That 30″ plus is my goal, not a simple feat in POC, but the one I missed was in that class.

Before it was over everyone caught a few keepers and had just a hell of a good time.  The total was 17 trout, 3 reds, 1 black drum, 1 sheepshead, and 2 big flounders.  Not a bad total by my standards when faced with Austin Boy’s weather.  Todd did catch this, and if you know what it is let me know.


This is a cool little fish.

And a last word on losing big fish.  I lost a big one in the cut, missed the topwater trout of my life, and then got spooled.  As my line was ripping off the spinning rod I kept yelling don’t get to the knot, but alas, that took about 2 seconds.  While it was probably a big jack, I forgot to just give a yank and break it off and lose a jig instead of 75 yards of fluorocarbon.

I am thankful to them for including me in their trips.  They are all great guys who fish hard, but never let that get in the way of having a great time.  I knew the others but had not met Mateo.  He is a real gentleman and it was good to fish with him. And though it is really selfish of me, but I so rarely do not have to bring the boat or feel responsible for what other folks catch and getting hauled around is a thing of beauty.  These guys do not need my help.  Todd’s first trip to POC I fished with him to get him started and he has turned that little bit of help into a fishing machine.  He has learned a lot and one of the things I really respect about him is his ability to adapt and to learn.  He has taken what he learns from everything and everyone and turned it into production.  All of us could learn from that.  As to the rest of those yahoos, they catch fish.  So thanks guys and I will be looking forward to hearing your report for today.  I just could not drag my old ass out of bed this morning.  We spent all day wading and I can wuss out since I live here while they on the other hand fish till they drop.


More Hunting

The buck below is from our buddy Terry’s hunting spot in Nebraska.  They have shot some big bucks there, and had some big ones on the camera, but this one just might take the cake.  And when you look at it remember to keep one thing in perspective, this is a mature corn fed monster Northern deer, not one of those the size of a German Shepard with horns.  So you can extrapolate the true size of this rack.  Only in my dreams!


This really is a trophy buck!  You better name that guy.

Terry I hope you or one of your boys gets this one on the ground.  And you probably have the Shoedog all worked up to head your way this winter.  We can not wait for this years hunting pictures.  Now after seeing this absolute genetic monster here is the one Shoedog killed that could not be any more opposite if he tried, but he is a genetic something.


Maybe his momma was messing around with an African antelope.

So hunting is in full swing.  The Shoedog has put up the rods and reels for now as he tries to whack that big buck.  My buddy Jeffish is on a hunting trip in central Texas and I will be looking forward to some pictures from all of them.  And if the rest of you have killed some stuff send me your email and I will let you know how to get them to me.  Good luck to all you hunters.  And stay on land, I like having the water to myself!


Girls Rock!

My lovely wife sent me this photo of a friend of hers, Daniele, who is a member of the PHI helicopter team.  Not only does this woman risk her life to save all of us, she is one bad chick with a bow.

IMG_1266Think you have killed a hog?  That is a hog!

That is awesome young lady.  Nothing better than a woman, a bow, and a big ass dead hog!  You go girl.


And one last comment about our day.  We all had our phones off or in the boat and the horror that occurred in France did not intrude on our day.  Fishing for me and many others is about that, leaving it all behind.  Money troubles, work troubles, trouble with the wife or kids, it is all left in its place as we concentrate on our love of the outdoors.  But the world goes on whether we like it or not.  As I learned as a paramedic, there is very little that can not wait.  So as you enjoy the outdoors stick that I phone somewhere, even there if you get my point, but turn it off and put it away if you can.  Make each day count no matter what you are doing, it may be your last.  Worry about things tomorrow, life is short.  Even when I think the blog is more trouble than it is worth things like yesterday remind me that I am so fortunate to be able to spout this stuff.  What we often consider trouble in our lives is nothing more than a bump in the road.  And I so appreciate those of you who keep up with this.  It started as a lark, but your faithful comments keep me going.  So keep stopping in and I will keep writing.

Good Luck and Tight Lines

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Another Day of Sensless Brutal Murder. 11/14/15.

A Day of Madness.

(I try to keep this blog what it is, a celebration of fishing and the outdoors, and not delve into politics or religion.  But I am compelled to speak out, the dead and maimed worldwide deserve a voice, they deserve better.  The madness must end.  I am sickened by what has happened in France.  So you have been warned.  We will not be posting any responses we receive to this comment.  This is not a discussion nor is it the purpose of this blog.)


If you do not want to read my off topic comment on the senseless slaughter in France do not read this.  Warning  -  I may be labeled a racist for these comments but I could care less!

President Obama described ISIL as the JV team, he could not be any more wrong or delusional if he tried.  He refuses to use the term “Islamic Terrorist.”  His political correctness endangers us all.  Done in the name of Allah, by Muslims, the rape, murder, slavery, machine gunning of innocent concert goers, beheading of Christian children, are all being done in the name of Islam.  They said it, not me.

The warning from many voices that ISIL would use the refugees as cover for the infiltration of Islamic terrorists in to Europe went unheeded.  Now the Greeks have announced that at least one of the terrorist came through Greece as a refugee.  At least one of the gunmen had a Syrian passport.  Apparently at least 3 of the murdering scum had recently traveled to Syria and then returned to France.  And as far as currently known at least one American was slaughtered and at least 3 were injured in this attack by these murdering scum who we have somehow gotten to the point it is wrong or improper to label what they are, Islamic terrorists.

Islam bears the shame of this horror.  Where are the voices of alleged moderate Islam in the US condemning these insane and brutal acts of terror?  Where are the voices of alleged moderate Islam publicly denouncing ISIL and the Caliphate it publicly states and seeks to establish worldwide?  Why is it racist to ask how many have turned in any voice speading hate and supporting ISIL in mosques worldwide?  Why is it wrong to use the term Islamic Terrorist?  They sure the hell are not a bunch of Methodists.  Have we become so politically correct that we can not call murdering scum what they are?  Why is it considered racist to ask any of these questions?  What justification can ever be rationalized for these senseless acts?

The time has come for the US to get over this delusional vision of what we are facing.  I have basically been a long term isolationist in my view of the world.  But in this case that view was dead wrong.  I am sorry, I was wrong.  Ask the families of the beheaded children, the families of the Yezidi Christians in Iraq being slaughtered, the families of innocent diners in the restaurants of France where they stand.  Ask yourself how you would feel, what it would mean to you, when your grandmother’s brains are splattered all over the wall as  she feels her life slipping away as she is senselessly machined gunned while eating in a café on vacation.  Imagine the horror victims worldwide feel as they are raped and beheaded.  This may be ugly, but that is what it boils down to, senseless slaughter.  It only becomes real when it happens to you or the ones you love.

It does not matter how the world has gotten in this state.  Who gives a rat’s ass whose fault this is.  Why does it matter now?  Our foreign policy is not blameless in all of this, but that is not justification for brutal murder.  That discussion is now completely irrelevant.  We can no longer ignore this worldwide threat.  The time has come for action, to protect our country and the rest of the world from this insane spreading of radical Islam.  Call me what you will, argue all you want, but the time has come for real action.  The time has come for this ridiculous political correctness to end.  ISIL has taken responsibility for the unspeakable horror spreading around the globe in the name of Allah, and they promise to continue spreading death and war on the US and our children.  They threaten our country, our very way of life.  They have done this, and they are responsible for the whirlwind to come.  What more is it going to take?  The US, the rest of the world, and whatever moderate wing of the Islamic religion that allegedly exists, must quit F’n around with these animals.  What more do we need?  How many horrors, how many mass murders, how many innocent children have to be raped and beheaded before we act?

George Bush, not my favorite president to ever live, said one thing that was right after 9/11, and is even more correct for our world today  -  “You are either with us or against us.”  The time has come to take sides.  The time has come to end this.  Strategic military action and lip service in protecting us have to end.  It must end before the world is thrown into a conflagration that destroys us all, before a bomb is set off at a football game, before people are machined gun as they worship in a church in Peoria.  This will not go awayIt will not be alright in a little while.  Does our current administration have the backbone to do what needs to be done?  The world is at a tipping point.  For the safety of our country, the world, and those children yet to come, we must take action without mercy.  We must quit this ridiculous need to be politically correct.  My soul is sickened and I am so sorry for what has happened.  If this makes me a racist so be it.

“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil  is that good men do nothing.”

 God Bless America!

 (I will be posting the last couple of days of fishing in POC in a couple of hours.   I  am sorry my blog has come to this, but I am compelled to speak out for the innocent.  If my comments offend your sensibilities to bad.  I am scared for the future of my grandchildren and our world.)

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This and That 11/12/15.

Fish Catching Travel


Baits for all your fishing needs.

I am headed out to fish some this afternoon with my buddy Todd and some of the yahoos from Austin on the bay today but before I leave I wanted to share a couple of comments from 2 loyal readers.

I got this interesting comment from Johnny and hopefully I can answer his question.

I have been fishing with buzz bait, but the fish just laugh at me. Any suggestions on how to improve my chances? Hoping to learn from you.

In two weeks I’ll be heading to Fayette. I’ll let you know how the fishing is up there.

Thank you

There are a couple of very important points on buzzbait fishing on Coleto right now.  Normally what makes it such a great buzzbait lake is all the grass, much if it in that 3 – 6 foot range.  That keeps the fish in position where they can attack that thing way off the bank, often coming up over halfway back to smash it.  Unfortunately that is not the case right now.  Almost every one I have caught in the last few trips has been right on the bank, and none have come over 5 foot off, if that.  First, when the few fish that are willing to hit it are there you need to make you bait land as close to land as possible, and I mean close!  Next, it must be moving when it hits the water, it is a real reaction strike.  Since I cast right handed and then hold the rod with my left over the years I transfer the rod while the cast is in the air so that the bait does not sink, even a little, it must be moving to get them to strike.  I know this is not easy for folks who do not transfer the rod in mid cast, but it works.  I can not stress the importance of the bait moving when it hits the water.  And additionally I normally reel it at a moderate speed with a 7-1 reel, to fast and it does not seem to attract those reaction strikes.  When the fish are more spread out in the water column, or in the grass, I let the fish tell me the speed to reel it.

Second.  Keep the trolling motor on and cover lots of bank.  Pay attention to any slot, hole, or trash on the bank, and make a precision cast, they are just not willing to chase it.  A foot either left or right and no bites, it is that tough right now.  This may be simplistic answer to your question, but it is what is working right now under our current conditions.  So thanks for the question, we can all learn from each other, and it gives me a chance to act like I know what I am doing.  Just kidding as the next report shows.  And we will be waiting to hear your report on Fayette, I will probably be there in the next week or two myself.


Speaking of different ways to catch fish, and how much I know right now, I got this great report from Joe and I wanted to comment on it.

Love your blog. Been following for quite some time. A buddy and I were at Coleto on Sunday. We were fishing the wood with little success. The wind was blowing pretty good out of the north but at about 10:30 it died a bit and the fish came alive. We were sitting between 2 main lake points when I caught one on a crank. As I reeled to the surface another was trying to take the lure from the one I caught. We backed off and started fan casting between the 2 points when we found them. At one point we caught 13 in 15 casts. We stayed there and was able to move with the school we found and probably caught 30 fish. Most were in the 14-16 range but we did manage to a couple of nicer ones. We ended up somewhere in the 35-40 range today.
Look forward to your posts. They are very informative and extremely helpful. Thank again!!

Awesome report Joe.  It really shows that there are different ways to catch fish, and obviously I have not devoted enough time to crankbait.  Not only is it a great search bait, but when you think about it it may be the perfect bait on Coleto right now with shad being their primary forage.  A side note to that is I stopped and talked to a couple of guys doing a shocking survey for GBRA and they told me that the lake is full of gizzard shad, not to mention threadfin.  It is telling and I just did not “listen” and apply it to my search.  My experience that last few weeks kept telling me that the fish were ganged up somewhere.  Without our grass to spread them out they are just acting differently this year due to conditions, and it is my bad for not doing more experimentation.  Like all fisherman I get caught up in the same old, same old.  So the result is I have been catching just enough and not really thinking about where the main bunches of fish are right now and what I should be doing.  Thanks for reminding me that there are lots of other ways to skin a cat.

And as far as the wood right now it really can be tough to find them.  They are not on all of it by any stretch, it seems to have to be the perfect set up.  That is in 4 or 5 feet of water, but they do not seem to be in all that standing timber areas.  So for me, fishing the lake so much I know those little isolated wood that has been holding them.  It is a milk run, but I have been getting bored with that.  That alone should have make me fish alternative methods, my loss.  So thanks for the great report, it must have been awesome!  And the rest of you, think about his report on the location, it is telling and we are lucky to have a guy share that kind of information with us.  Thanks Joe.


I read an article by one of the local “famous” guides in one of the saltwater magazines and I wanted to comment on that based on where we are going to fish today.  He used a term that I find extremely derogatory and elitist – Potlicker.  It implies that he is the only one who ever fished any place first.  It implies that anyone, including a grandpa who wants to catch fish with his grandson is somehow a lessor person for seeing boats in an area catching fish and then fishing it later.  It implies that he learned everything there is to know about places to fish all on his own without help from anyone.  It implies that he is so superior to the rest of us that his “places” are “his” places.  It implies that if you fish certain areas that you are a lessor man than him and his superior skill and intellect.  Having guided for 20 years I know guides like this.  Instead of sharing and helping others he is beneath that.  Because he has a 24 foot hydro blaster with a 500hp motor and a wrap that he is all that.  They begin to think that they have superior rights to the water and fish that belong to all of us.  That attitude is what is wrong with fishing today.  It make me sick.

The reason I am commenting on that article today is we are headed up the barge canal to catch some trout.  He specifically referred to it, and they people who fish it, as potlickers.  Somehow fishing where you know you can catch fish makes you a lessor fisherman than him.  Of course if he did not fish where he could catch them he would be out of business.  Most people do not have the luxury or time to fish as often as they want, and any inference that people would want to maximize what little time they have to fish by going to where the fish are is just plain wrong.  So I am a potlicker, and this blog is a actually dedicated to that very thing!  I want you to potlick my places, I want to give you information that puts you in a place to catch more fish.  If I can help anyone catch a fish by sharing places and information I am happy.  So from now on I declare – “I AM THE KING OF THE POTLICKERS AND PROUD OF IT.”   So I will get a report up tomorrow, and every other day I can to help you be a better potlicker.  Kinda got worked up over that didn’t I.

Off to the barge canal to potlick up a storm.  So keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.

Good Luck and Tight Lines

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Coleto and other stuff. 11/10/15.

Fish Catching Travel


Baits for all your fishing needs.

Sorry there has not been a post for several days but I was on a hiatus.  A trip to OKC to see my family and attend the Wine for Wickets fundraiser was the reason.  My daughter and her husband’s foundation raises money for the poor children of South Africa, and then they go on a mission trip every couple of years.  It is a great thing they do and we enjoyed  the time we went with them to South Africa.  And it was nice to be able to fit a safari into that trip.

So after a few days off it was back on the water.  There is a front coming so the lake was the choice for today.  Normally that is good for bass fishing, but my results on the lake seem to remain the same no matter what, when, or how I fish.  Plus we are expecting rain some time, so if it rains tomorrow there is a river and creek I want to check out the water color and see if it is trout time.  This is the time of year the trout really hit the rivers, and hopefully they will not be to dirty.

The lake is still on the rise and it just has not really cleared.  But the water is back in some of the grass and cover so I started with the buzzbait.  It wasn’t long before I got my first bite, he smoked it,I stuck him, and promptly broke my line.  Nothing like tying on a new buzzbait and breaking it off first bite.

I stuck with it and put 5 or 6 in the boat as I fished my way up lake.  I have just not been able to find a real locational pattern other than wood.  It makes it tough this time of year when there is no place all that much better than another.  They are just here and there.


I did manage to put one big fish in the boat today.

This one came off a point, which still seems to be the best places for shallow fish.  It was spotty with the buzzbait so I threw some plastic on wood, which is still the best way to catch them, and it worked like it has been.  I won’t bore you with the same fish I have shown from Coleto for the last month.  They are OK fish, just not the better ones.

I fished from about 10 until 4 and probably caught a dozen or so.  Most were ok keepers, and about half came on buzzbait and half on plastics.  I tried a topwater minnow and had a bite on my first cast, and then could not get another.  That is a really good tactic on Coleto come December all the way until spring.  Then it was a KVD Sexy Dawg in the walk the dog retrieve and of course I had a big one eat it while I was not looking and she came off in the brush.  And then not another bite on it either.  It is just real spotty right now.  There are fish to be caught but I just have not found the real ticket, but I will.


Shoedog’s buddy shot this nice hog today with his muzzle loader.


Robert with a nice hog.

Shoedog has been trying to kill one but it just has not worked out.  Hopefully he can get one on the ground his next trip.  Hunting season is in full swing, you could tell when there was only 4 trucks at the ramp when I got there, and none when I quit.  So if your hunt has been successful send me a pic, we would love to see them.

That will do it for today.  It is raining this morning but should be out of here sometime in the next couple of days.  If I am lucky the couple of rivers I will check on will be fishable and a report will be coming soon.  I really appreciate you sticking with me when I take a couple of days off.  So keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.

Good Luck and Tight Lines

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