Port O’Connor Texas 9/15/17.

Fish Catching Travel

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After a tour of the Midwest; Fort Worth to Fayetteville, Fayetteville to Kansas City (with one motel move there), Kansas City to Oklahoma City, then Oklahoma City back to Victoria, it is finally back to the fishing.  We saw the family and grandkids, and went to the U2 concert.  I have been to quite a few shows in the last 50 years but this one was special.  They are not only one of the great super groups of all time, but they are good folks who care about people and expressed their heartfelt thanks to America for letting them be a part of our country.  Musically and visually it was beyond fantastic and if they were playing close I would go again tomorrow.  What a band.

Weather

86/76  Sun with a few passing clouds.  Wind SSE  10 – 15.  10% chance rain.

Tides

High  7:33 AM     1.2      
Low   8:31 PM     0.3   

Solunar Times

Best Time  7:13 am  to  9:13  am (No other relevant times.)

As usual preparing this the day before it gives us a chance to make a guess, in fishing occasionally it is actually an educated guess, on how it might be.  I love fishing a falling tide, and tomorrow it will be falling most of the day, and there should be great water movement.  The wind is fine and it has the makings of a good day.  So with that said, we shall see.

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It was absolutely perfect when I got to Froggie’s about a half hour before daylight.  The wind was light out of the SE and the water temp was 82 degrees.  The water has cleared substantially and things  appear to be back to normal.  So as soon as I could see I headed across to the island.  After catching there last time it seemed as good a place to start as anywhere.  (Note:  There were boats anchored all down the Pringle shoreline as far as I could see as the day wore on.)   So I anchored out side of a drain and hopped over with high expectations.  And I did not leave that spot for almost 7 hours.

First up was topwater, and try as I might I only raised 3 or 4,  boating  2 small ones.  Several reds followed it and one of them blew up about 10 foot from me but did not hook up.  So I switched to plastics and it was game on.  I started with the Controlled Descent Lures and went through several colors, using both the Paddle Shad and the Jerk Shad.  But something just was not right, lots of bumps and nips, and while I boated a few, there was something off.  I noticed a lot of the bait, and there is tons, most were really small so it was back to one of my favorite ways to catch them, a small 3″ watermelon red/pearl paddle tail on a 1/32 ounce jig head on my spinning rod and 8lb fluorocarbon, which last year produced some of my biggest fish.

There was no shortage of redfish today.

This is what most of them looked like, and if I had to guess it was a good dozen for the day.

The whole time I kept catching trout.  Unfortunately almost all were 13 – 15″ but they sure were willing.  One interesting thing was the drain did not have any fish in it.  And the bottom is much softer, looks like the hurricane flushed some soft bottom out of the back lake, and like every time it happens things have changed.

I waded from knee deep on the shoreline out to waist deep, and the fish were on all of it.  It was simply a matter of watching for the rafts of bait and it was usually an immediate bite.  The water started falling about 11:00 and cleared up really nice.  So I kept after it, wading through a ton of small ones.  It was an easy 30+ as the bite was on and stayed that way until I quit at 1:30.  Then I got the bite I was hoping for.

This girl pulled the Boga Grip to 5 1/2 lbs.

She slammed it and the fight was on.  She was one of those that jumped several times, and on the light line I played it easy and on the Boga she went.  Obviously not fishing all summer it sure was nice to catch a big girl and it has my juices flowing for what is to come.  Though I only caught a couple of other trout that were keepers, it was one of those days where I was not willing to leave fish to find fish.  Plus when you are catching them continuously it is hard to stop.

I was surprised that they were not all that interested in topwater, again maybe a size issue, though I probably should have tossed it later in the morning.  And the only thing that made sense with the plastics was the size of the bait.  Using the super light jig head it falls a lot slower and I finally figured out to slow it down, and though I was in 2 -3 feet of water it still needed time to sink, and they were hitting it close to the bottom, they definitely did not want it fast.

As I was quitting there was a boat on the point down from me and as I eased of he whistled at me, and I met Frank.  We had chatted a little at Froggie’s before I left and of all things he was headed to the same bank, and I made it a second before him, so he started on the other point.  We chatted a while, great guy with decades of experience at POC.  Retired like me, he has a trailer and comes down and spends a couple of weeks whenever it moves him.  He was catching them also, and actually lost a trout he estimated at 7lbs that he initially thought was a red.  We have all been there.  As I always say here please if you see me be sure to say hi.  I have met some great folks that way, and I am sure I will be seeing him in the future.

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I got this comment and question from Dustin concerning my couple of trips to Belize.

Hey I’m interested in doing a similar trip. Did you do any deep sea fishing while you were there or have any info on that? Great read, thanks!

Unfortunately I did not get to do any offshore fishing, but there is some.  Our last trip it was really windy, which ended up being to bad.  3 of us split a boat so everyday one of us stayed at the resort.  I headed to the Lazy Lizard for a cold one and ended up meeting a commercial fisherman who caught for the local restaurants and learned a lot from him.  He fishes at night, outside of the reef out of his panga, with hand lines sometimes in a couple of hundred feet of water.  He showed me his hands, which were trashed.  When the kings are there he cuts pieces of tire for each finger but you could tell he pays a price.  If the wind had not been blowing, he was not going that night, I would have gone with him.  So I guess in answer to your question the reef is very close to the island and there are lots of fish, and I know there are boats that do trips like that.  If you think about going contact Sea Dreams by email and tell them what you are thinking.  Definitely use the same inshore guide, he is a real pro and at a little over $300 a day worth every penny and helped me knock he permit off my bucket list.

Now if I was thinking about a trip that was offshore centered it would definitely be Costa Rica.  Check out that post and the guide service we used.  Definitely the best deal money wise in all the offshore fishing I have done.  If memory serves me we ended up boating 9 sails and probably 10 mahi over 25lbs in 2 days.  The weather is great, the sea is usually calm, and it costs about the same to fly there.  So whatever you decide let us know, we will all be waiting to hear what you decide.  Thanks for reading.

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And Rusty sent us this update on Fayette for you bass fishermen.

Doug, quick note that Fayette Lake is back open. Fished yesterday and it was slow for us. Water was still a little murky and 85 degrees. Fish seemed scattered instead of grouped up. I’m sure it will improve over next couple weeks.
Tight lines and glad you are getting healthier.
Rusty

Sounds about right.  I imagine fish do have to adjust to any raise like that, whether fresh or salt.  Historically it seems the fishing always comes back stronger than before, which on Fayette would be scary.  I checked Coleto Creek and according to their website it will reopen on Monday the 18th.  So South Texas is slowly returning to normal.  Good to hear from you.

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As far as keepers I give the day a C, but as far as numbers I give it an A.  They bit and bit, and when I quit they were still biting.  And catching a good one made the whole day perfect.  Wind was perfect, tide was perfect, and the water was beautiful, what more could you ask.  I have lots of making up to do after being on the shelf the last 3 months, and if the fishing stays like this you can find me on the bay.

Next it will be watching the weather, I hope to spend 3 days at Baffin as soon as the right conditions rear their ugly head.  But if there is no great stretch I will just keep watching and fishing POC.  Catching a big trout just screams Baffin.  And of course the lake is opening up on Monday and I have a friend who’s boys are just itching to catch some fish. If they are biting I will get them on the water the next weekend or two.  Nothing is better than putting some kids on fish.  So keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.  It is gonna be a hella of a fall!  And you Austin Boys, I can’t wait to see you guys.

Good Luck and Tight Lines

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This and That 9/12/17.

Fish Catching Travel

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Thought I would share a couple of things with you as I sit in the motel getting ready to see U2 on the Joshua Tree tour.  The last year or so we have seen the Stones, the Eagles, and now U2.  Doing the old timers tour, before them or us are dead.  Should be a great show but I am chomping at the bit to be back on the bay this week.

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I got this comment from Richard and will be looking forward to hearing what they find.

Heading to POC next week. Will give you an update on fishing success or failures. We are doing some scouting and will eventually go to Sunday Beach and see how it looks/fishes now that there is a pass open

The wind kept me from taking a pounding to see how it looked the other day so not sure what you will find, but if it really opened that is nothing but a good thing.  And hope you catch some fish.  Be sure to check later in the week as I will be fishing a day or two shortly.  It is shaping up to be a really epic fall.  Thanks for keeping in touch.

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I managed a stop at Cabela’s on the way, the car just makes the turn in all by itself, and made a couple of good deals.  One was a self inflating life jacket.  Over the last year I have been wearing a regular life jacket at any lake I fish, always when fishing by myself, but basically never on the bay.  But I did when I went last week as I was wondering what might have floated in or been submerged.  Then I hit that tree in 4 – 5 foot of water along Bayucos Island and though it was a easy glancing blow, it could have been ugly.  So when you head to the bay just be careful, there are big changes and relying on old trails could get you in trouble.  But whether lake or bay I always put on the kill switch, it can save your life.

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And it irritated me that I forgot to include a very important bit of information on my last trip to the bay.  There are mullet, and mullet, and more mullet.  The fall mullet run is shaping up to be a monster, and with it should come a great topwater bite shallow.  So next time you are out keep a sharp eye out for them.  The bank where I managed to catch a few keepers was loaded with them, and low and behold there were keepers there.  Funny how that works.

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One new thing I tried last week, and really loved, was using a really thin 20lb braid with an 10lb fluoro leader on the new light casting rod.  It increased my casting distance a ton, and the feel was great.  Last year I really noticed the difference fishing 8 and 10 fluoro on spinning tackle and the size of the trout I caught.  Of course you have to be a little more careful with reds and big trout, but anything that increases my chances with 25″+ trout is good by me.

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And a couple of comments on the hurricanes this month.  The linemen are absolute beasts.  They worked dawn to dusk in terrible conditions, away from their family, and now some are off to Florida.  There is not enough words to say thanks to those guys, but THANKS.

The thing that continues to amaze me is how many people stay after a mandatory evacuation.  If you think about it that is really selfish, and not only puts your life in danger, but potentially first responders who have better things to do than save your sorry ass when you ignore a mandatory evacuation order.  I know it is a personal and tough decision, I just made it myself.  But when it comes down to it, you make the call, you live with the results, and if it goes ugly don’t blame anyone but yourself.

Last is a note to any prosecuting attorney where looting took place.  I know how the game is played, I was a pro at it.  But it is time to step up to the plate for the victims and your community – do not make any looter a plea bargain offer.  At least the first few should be taken to trial.  A normal plea offer would be substantially lower than a jury would give them, trust me on that.  And if any of them have priors no offer, take them  to trial and enhance any sentence that can be enhanced.  Time to let 12 people in your community tell these scum exactly what their behavior is worth.  Texas law is not my area of expertise, but after doing a few trials in my life it would not surprise me if a jury maxed everyone of them out.  Time to send a message – You loot and either die when a homeowner shoots you or spend the best part of your life in a living hell.  The man keeping me down, my momma didn’t love me, I am poor, it does not matter, there is no excuse for looting.

And I will be waiting to see how the Texas Attorney General handles his threat to go after people who price gouged.  I think he is all bluster but I will give him the benefit of the doubt.  Just because you own a business does not make you one bit better than a scummy looter.  Just saying.

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All that aside I can not wait to get back on the water.  The gremlins that have followed me around for months need to give it a rest and let me get back to my life.  Plus we are entering my favorite time of the year, fall into winter.  Big schools of redfish cruising inch deep water, big trout smashing topwater at any point in the day, cool mornings, and all you hunters in the field and not on the water make for my favorite time on the bay.  So keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.

Good Luck and Tight Lines

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POC 9/8/17.

Fish Catching Travel

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This mornings fiasco is actually working out for the best.  It is time to head to the bay and look things over.  In fact, who knows?  I might even catch a couple.  So I switched equipment from the boat to saltwater from freshwater tackle.  Everything will be ready to go and I am getting excited as this is written.

Weather

84/71  Mainly Sunny  Wind ENE 10 – 20.  0%  Chance rain.  (And for future reference it will be exactly 1 week post hurricane.)

Tides

 Low   1:26 AM     0.6   
 High   7:20 AM     0.8   
 Low   1:54 PM     0.6
 High   8:36 PM     0.8

Solunar Times

  • Best Times  12:37A – 2:37A   1:02P – 3:02P
  • Good Time    6:49A – 8:49A

Here is my quick take on tomorrow conditions.  As long as the wind stays below 20 it will be easier to tell if it is hurricane leftover or the coloring up that happens at POC when the wind blows that direction.  The tides are definitely not worth a hoot and it should be high.  And looks like there are a couple of Solunar Times that are helpful.  Note that the Best and good time surround the morning high and early afternoon low.  Maybe with a 2 tide day the water moves best during that time unlike when it moves earlier or later on a one day big tides.   All that is left to do is go fishing.

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And right on point for tomorrow’s fishing I got this comment from ED.

Doug,
sorry your plan A didnt pan out as you wanted, but I am very interested in POC right now. our little house didnt have much damage (knock on wood!) but since I had knee surgery beginning in august I havent been down except to do some clean up.
wondering if you could give a report on the barroom area and also around coastguard area. thanks Ed

First glad you made it through.  So much is really random.  A perfect example my close next door neighbor had a few limbs down and not much else.  We on the other hand had a huge tree on the garage and are getting the pleasure of putting on a new roof.  As the Boss always says; “Fate sucks.”

But to the important stuff, the water and fishing conditions in our area, see below, I am just as interested in how it goes tomorrow as you are.

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POC

I can not win for losing. After not getting to fish on the bay all summer, then getting released and here comes Harvey, it seems things have conspired to keep me off the water. Last night I got all the gear ready and was heading to bed early to be at Froggie’s at daylight and again the gremlin reared it’s ugly head.  The Boss got home about 10:30 and was probably lucky to make it.  Seems her battery failed, which was way early.  And to make matters worse she had a hair appointment at 8:00 this morning.  So I slept in and took her car to Interstate Battery, and will wonders never cease, it was under complete replacement.  So they popped it in and we traded vehicles and finally about 9:30, 4 hours later than I planned, I was on the way.

The water was real muddy at the ramp and the temp was 87 degrees.  And the wind, oh the wind, was blowing about 15 – 20 in a straight line out of the NE.  If there was ever a hassle wind in the POC area, this was it.  It really made it difficult to tell how much of the water color was the hurricane remnant and how much was wind.  It was one of those winds that was blowing in on the island near Pringle, in on Dewberry, and straight down Big Bayou.  I brought the wading stuff but did not plan on getting in unless I hit a hot spot.  The goal was to cover water.

Finally caught a few trout, the first in 3 months.

So it was hard to discern exactly what is going on with the water color but the farther away you get from POC out to the island it gradually clears.  So as far as water color goes if you are planning on fishing go to it.

Since this was a partial exploratory trip, remember I have not been on the bay in 3 months, I was interested in how it looked as well as how it fished.  The strike outs places were drifting throwing plastics on Dewberry and Big Bayou.  I attribute that totally to water color, but the plan was to fish the places I knew so that they sucked was no surprise.

I fished the Oil Cut and the water color is pretty good there.  5 trout and 1 red came over the side, but nothing to talk about.  I did miss several today, way more than usual, but with a big bow in the line, and not having fished in a while, that was not unusual.  From there a ride down Bayucos and Grass island gave me the first experience with change.  I was in about 5 foot running along when I hit something, not hard, it felt like wood.  I slowed down and there was another stump end of a tree of some sort sticking right above the water.  There was one more during the day so remember, things have changed.  In fact a guy washing his boat said that the entrance to Pringle has definitely changed.  So just be careful.

They never did get any bigger than this.

The plum/limetreuse Paddle Shad was the preferred bait, though I got bites on every color I tried.  My favorite, the blackgold/lintreuse Jerk Shad, caught the small ones.  With the wind a 1/4oz swim bait hook with an inserted rattle was best, and I think with the water having some color to it made the Paddle Shad which had vibration the key.

When I got to the island near Army Hole the wind was blowing pretty good right down the bank.  I set up in 3 foot of water and just drifted from there all the way past the regular entrance into Pringle, where it finally got to windy.  The shoreline was clear enough and the only affect on the water was due to the wind.  On that drift 7 or 8 jumped on, most in about 2 foot of water, and my continued problem getting the hook in them led to me losing several better ones.  I did throw a spinnerbait just a little, and did not have a touch.  After a couple of drains without any success and finally called it a day.

 Considering the wind, the water color, and not wetting a hook until 11:00 it was not to bad for a short day.  And in a few more trips the not getting the hook in them will disappear.  It really reminded me of the difference in fishing constantly then not fishing.  My reactions were a little late, and I was cranking them on instead of setting the hook.  And it definitely pays to be carefull your next few trips.  It will take a little while for things to settle down, but as far as the fishing goes looks like it is on.

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And on the subject of my little foray to a closed lake I got this comment from SA Joe.

I have been there, read that, went fishing and the report completely sucked from TPWD.

TPWD website and it mentioned the water being clear= murky.
TPWD website and it mentioned the water being murky=CRAPPY !!!

Go one up on their water clarity !!!
I’m in the same boat as having to travel to get to some great lakes. Pisses you off when there is no help to find the conditions of the lakes.
Joe

And I want to add to that.  One of the things I have strived to do is help folks catch a couple by blogging reports about specific places and methods, no matter how the fishing goes that day.  When traveling a lot research is a big part of going fishing somewhere, especially if you have not been there before.  One thing I have noticed is there is often no place where you can get real usable specific advice or reports.  Really makes it hard at times to have a leg up.  So I feel your pain.  If more fishermen would trade real advice and reports everyone would benefit.  And just showing a big sack of fish online with no information does not add to our knowledge or the sport.  Now that I am back in the game the reports will start coming.  I have lots of making up to do!

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Last, the gremlin has one more bump in the road before I can get back to it hardcore.  We have planned a trip to see my parents this weekend, then U2, and then the grandkids.  So here we go again but I am not letting it piss me off.  It is what it is and I will just have to fish half again as hard to make up for the lost summer.  But it sure did feel great to be out there again.  So keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.

Good Luck and Tight Lines

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Stuff Happens 9/7/17.

Fish Catching Travel

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 Poor Planning = Poor Performance 

I finally made a decision to get back on the water.  After thinking about it all day at the last minute I decided to head to Fayette County in the morning for a couple of reasons.  First, it was making me feel guilty to think about driving down to POC.  There are still folks in a world of hurt down there and it just didn’t feel right.  Second, Fayette is always good to me, I was looking forward to a great day with little wind, perfect for jerk baiting Fayette.

So at 5:15 I took off to be there right at daylight.  Traffic was light and I arrived there at the perfect time.  To bad it was closed!  Perfect.  It never freakin’ occurred to me that the flooding was that bad, but it should have.  I took the time to read the fishing report on the TPWD website and it mentioned the water being murky.  So I aSSumed that things were good.  So there you have it, my fishing tip of the day –  Before you head out that far check the website of the entity that controls the water, you might save yourself a drive.  I know better than that.

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GOGGLE SUCKS!

I keep getting these sales calls in the name of Google telling me this is my last chance to save my website or they will list my business closed.  First you f’rs this is not a business, second this is my web blog and it ain’t going nowhere, and last and most important – You are not going to extort me!  I am not buying some service, some b’s thing that you are selling, when it is going just fine here at fishcatchingtravel.com.  I take offense that you are using my phone to threaten me to pay money for my website.  In fact if you show my “business” as closed there will be no need to continually make sales calls to me.

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Of course I lurk on several fishing sites, and there are some good ones out there right now.  One thing I have noticed is that folks, especially the guide services, often lay all their fish out on the deck.  While it gives you a great idea how many fish they caught after a while they all run together.  Not sure how to get the idea across but there must be a better, and visually more interesting, way to show your fish.  Take a minute if you are fishing with others and take a few on the water pics.  Love rod bending pics and the big stringer on the wader’s back pic.  Believe me folks will be a lot more interested.

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So after that little 3 hour plus fiasco I am right back to where I started.  In the morning it will be POC, final answer.  Plus it will be so interesting to see the changes.  Last time there was high water from a close hurricane it changed several of the drains I fish consistently. After seeing the pictures from the air of Sunday Beach and the pass there will be big changes in some of the drains.  Some will be deeper and some will end up silting in, just depends on where they are.  And as I have not seen a report other than from the jetties I really have no clue what to expect.  The first stop may be the bank near the old Coast Guard Station, then out to the Pringle area to check on some drains, and of course even if it is muddy a run through Big Bayou to see if it has changed any of those drains.  So there will be plenty to do and see tomorrow, whether I actually catch any fish remains to be seen.  So keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.

Good Luck and Tight Lines

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Internet! 9/4/17.

Fish Catching Travel

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Since I posted a couple of hours ago the internet has returned.  Of course yesterday after buying a digital antenna after a week without any TV it all comes back on.  I knew that would work.

We finished everything outside this morning and it was nice to have the Boss helping.  But believe me she did her share this week taking care of folks.  So normalcy is right around the corner, at least here.  I will spend the day resting, then tomorrow will find another way to help.  So here are the comments that have been building up and a few pictures.

Hey Doug,
You are a wonderful man and I pray all day long for you and everyone in Victoria along with all the others suffering from this devastation.
May God be with you and all those who help.

Voe

Thanks and so good to hear from you.  If we ever get back to Sin City I will surely call.

Hope you guys are doing ok, we’ve been doing rescues for a few days here in Liverpool, praying for y’all, be careful out there and stay hydrated

Awesome Gary, it is so awesome what you guys have done and you have our thanks.

And it is always great to hear from Mac.

Doug, your words of late are ditto for me also. However there are some good things that also happen. My synopsis follows. In 1970 Our home in Port Aransas was leveled by Celia. I was young and was shocked and very disgruntled to see my town in shambles. After 3 days we were allowed back on the island to start the massive cleanup. There was no power and no food on the island. The surf surprisingly was crystal clear and my brothers and I walked down and caught some beautiful trout on the old Bingo lures. While there, our local Sheriff came down and scolded us for fishing and not working/ He ran us off but we had one of the best fish dinners ever.

PS- we also saw that same Sheriff fishing in our spot minutes later

We rebuilt our home and I told my dad I would never leave this fishing mecca.
I worked my way through college guiding clients and fishing in my spare time.
I had to make a decent living, had a family and moved to Bastrop.

Today my son and I visited PA again. His work as an engineer made us able to return to the island. Again I was totally surprised by the damage and our old home was totaled. The water was already clearing and I know we will all fish again!!!!!!!!!!

But now fishing is the last thing on my mind.  Helping others is what it is all about. Tonight I will sleep in my own bed. I pray our Gov’t and people step up. So far, many fisherman and their boats are doing the Dunkirk thing. God bless em all.

Some good things now. Hopefully some new cuts have been opened up on the barrier islands. I pray Cedar bayou in not closed in by the storm surge

The back lakes will now be havens for the redfish who were moved by the high waters.

We saw no dead sport fish between Port A and Rockport.

It is time more fishermen and women join CCA. This group will get us all fired up to get our waters back to par.

I was so much to fishing this fall and some things will have to wait but I know that good times are soon to happen again.  Mac

Reading your comment reinforces the old adage, the world just keeps on turning and there is always a new day coming.  Thanks for the update on Port A and for your long term support.

And this from Jimmy on my post after the Harvey hit.

Amen Brother!

There is so much to do and so much so much to be thankful for.  It has been a humbling experience.

We are happy that you are in a safe place. Writing is your strength , you have already helped out by letting people know about the situation. Please let us know how we can help.

Muskie Bay Resort

Thanks Paul and the gang for thinking about us.  Muskie Bay Resort is the best place to cross that bucket list muskie off the list.

What a great comment. I would like to meet you on the water one day and shake your hand. I’ll continue to read your stuff. Have a safe trip back to Victoria. We have a mess down here but we will get through it. Regards, Randy

It is getting back to normal here, hope it is the same for you where you are.  And nothing would make me happier to actually write a fishing report.  Better days are on the way.

Even my mom dropped me a note.

My heart is with you in your grief and pain. Your words are elegant, heartfelt, and above all, timely. May they reach into the hearts and minds of all who read them. We love you, we admire you, we give you gratitude and love for what you have written and for your response to human suffering. Mom
Lighting a candle now for the safety of your lovely Victoria home, for all the people of the Coast,
and for Nancy’s incredible skills and heart which will carry her through her return
to the ER.

Thanks Mom, you might just be a little biased!  But we are getting it whipped and are looking forward to seeing you, Dad, and Kelly next week.

And I got this from my buddy Clyde who is fishing somewhere up north.

Let me know what I can do.

What you can do is send me some pics from your trip last week so I can share them with folks.  No matter how tough it is we all love some fish pictures.  Thanks for asking Dude.

And thesecomments have been laying around since I was released to fish.  Of course Harvey showed up 4 days later and it put a stop to the fishing.

Good to see you back out there! Looking good with the fish. That first bite and hookup had to be sweet. Stay safe this weekend!!

Jim

 

Great to have you back. I sure missed the reports. I will be heading to POC just to collect boats and batten down the hatches. Keep the reports coming!

Thanks Jimmy.   And I got this next one from Ross.

Glad to hear you are back in the game!

Good luck and look forward to reading about your coming up adventures!

As far as adventures this last stretch could be described as an adventure, and that will be enough of that for a while!

HI Doug
I consider this to be a good report concerning your recovery. You will be on the water soon enough. The fish are not going anywhere there will be plenty for an expert fisherman like you.

If you have a problem getting anyone to go out with you give me a shout. I can get off work most any time and have a small house in Seadrift. We can even use my kind of new boat 2014 shallow sport with 21 hours on the yammer hammer 150

Thanks Jim, as far as an expert I look at fishing like practicing law or practicing medicine.  There is a reason for that saying as you are always learning and fishing is the same way.  Drop me a note next time you know you are headed this way and let’s see if we can hook up.  I really enjoy letting other folks tote my sorry ass around.

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Thanks to all for keeping in touch.  What little time I was able to spend to spend  here the last week it was so humbling to hear from all of you.  Soon it is my turn to get back to fishing and reporting.  I still have the most expensive rod I ever bought calling my name.  I can not wait.

Here is a few pictures of the house which I am happy to say is almost squared up.

A giant tree on the roof to dangerous for me to screw around with,  it was a whopper and some how did not hurt the roof at all, but it was interesting watching them take it down.

It was no small job getting it down.  A big thanks to the guys!  

Piece by piece this pile is taller than me and over 30 foot long.

The roof was intact but with shingles missing we are going to replace the whole thing.  We have good insurance but with so little damage it is kind of like a boat –Break Out Another Thousand, to bad it won’t be just a thousand.  But we are safe as most folks in Victoria are, and it could have been so much worse.  The thing I am now waiting for is to see how Congress handles this mess.  Wouldn’t want them to interrupt their holiday weekend and get funds appropriated and on the way to the Texas coast.  Sorry but if there is any way to screw it up they will.

That is it for today.  I can finally feel a little caught up in my life after sometimes feeling like a chicken with my head cut off running from project to project.  Not sure what is next but it is going to involve at least a little fishing before the weekend, even if it is a quick morning trip, I just want to feel a rod in my hand and that distinctive bite that says fish on!  So keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.

Last but not least, thanks to everyone all along the coast for your help and sacrifice to help us.  You are hero’s and we can never repaying you.  And to the Texans, you are freakin’ awesome and I am proud to live here.  God Bless America.

Good Luck and Tight Lines

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Holding pattern. 9/4/17.

I hope this is my last post that is not fishing related.  Our life is slowly returning to normal. We have no internet but besides not being able to drink the water things are ok here.  Victoria got really lucky compared to most other places and for that we are thankful.

The first few days out helping folks were tolerable until 2 days ago when the skeeters came out with the warm weather.  One place we removed a tree that was in a ditch with water was something.  Big black mofos ate us and since then they are a constant hassle no matter where you are.

Froggie’s is open and before the week is out it sure would be nice to hit the water.  I have heard Coleto Creek is going to be closed for a couple of weeks so I will try to get he official word and let you know.  I keep looking at the boats and wishing but normalcy is returning and though  it does not seem like it there is an end to this.

With no computer it might be while before I am really back to it and I really want to share the great comments I got from all of you.  So keep hanging around, it will be back to fishing soon. It has been a sad day in this part of the world broken up with acts of kindness and caring that can never be repaid.  Texans have stepped up and even though I am a rozorback through and through this has made me proud to call myself a Texan.

Good Luck and Tight Lines

(Totally off the subject but how about a little football.  The collapse by A&M last night was probably the craziest failure ever.  How in God’s green earth did they let that one get away from them?  It just might be a long season in Aggie land.)

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Wow! 8/31/17. I think!

A quick post to let you know VIctoria is on the way back.  Folks are taking the bull by the horns as Texans will do and it has been awesome in the face of so much misery and suffering.  The efforts by everyone, the list would take me an hour to include them all, but it has been humbling.  I have been with my buddy Chris and his son, joined by Michael and another fine young man yesterday’s, for a couple of days of tree clearing for old folks needing help.  Pick a street, any street.  I thought about the boat and Houston but there is so many folks in Victoria who still need help.  Neighbor helping neighbor is how it will recover and when you see folks diving in for whatever it makes me teary eyed.  As I write this the sounds of chainsaws fill the air.  This will be the last post for a couple of days and when I get back will post all your fine comments.  Electric on last night late! I was sleeping in my  life chair dead tired when all of a sudden a big noises! I jumped up to get the pistol out of the bedroom when I noticed the bathroom light on! And after 5 days back in business.  But I immediately Felt guilty, so many people worse than me.  Today I will fix some for our life, then back at it.  Probably see what help I can do in sedrift or poc.  Sometimes God pulls a fast one to remind you not to get to pridefull.  Just recovered and released to fish and then this.  Reminds you what is important in this world and where you fit in.  So thanks to all those heroes out there doing it because it is the right thing to do.  God bless America!

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I am heart broken. 8/26/17.

No ads, no promo, no fishing, no bullshit, this is the real freakin’ deal.  My stomping grounds I have come to love are trashed.  Lives are ruined, people are hurting, and it makes me so sad.  Tomorrow morning I return to Victoria where my good friends told me the neighborhoods look like a bomb went off.

As I type this I am sitting in the hotel bar in Austin feeling guilty because I did not stay and help out, and now I am trying not to cry.  All those places I have come to love, Port A, Rockport, Fulton, POC, and even Victoria are hurting, and it is tough.  The bartender just asked me about it and it was hard to keep it together.  The loss of all that cool coastal stuff I live for, how bad it will hurt my breathern who guide, the lady waiting on us in the restaraunts, all need our help.  And with the offers I have received to help have humbled me because I do not deserve it, not like the folks who make the coast what it is.  Like I said on facebook, it is time to put on my big boy pants and put my money where my mouth is.

So I will make a nice nest if the house is not to trashed tomorrow, then get the boss to the ER to relieve those folks who have been there for days, and then start to figure out what folks actually need.  As soon as I know more I will post it.  I have already been contacted by some folks from north Texas who have offered some help.  I do not know what is to come for the coast, but it is a life changing event for folks.  And I want to to help in some small way.

Now the politics, and I do not give a rats ass which side you are on, but here is an open message to Cruz, Cornyn, and “Faranfart.”  Do the right thing here, this is what government is for, not for obstructionism or party line by either side.  It ain’t about the $$$$ you continually bitch about spending, you personally have plenty, you are safe and warm in your DC homes that the folks who are hurting are paid for.  So don’t be the rear ends I expect you to be.  The people who are hurting pay your salary, they are not loaded hanging in Washington proclaiming how great they are.  If you can not shake loose OUR money, not yours, to really help folks you are the very thing I think you are.  I can and will take care of myself, but that is not the case with most folks down here. Step up, don’t come here and pose before the camera like you all love to do when I see you on the news, help my community like you have a soul and keep the politics out of it.  To harsh?  Tough crap, get over it and provide real practical help to the folks who need it, and not tomorrow, now.  Anytime you want to talk about it give me a buzz.

So that is my rant, but it makes me mad when I see them posturing on TV.  Shut the hell up and work on real relief today.  These are real folks who are really hurting and it does not matter a whit which party, color, or how much money they have.  I am heading home tomorrow morning, Sunday, and from the pics I just got back we might be past lucky at my house.  Of course the big tree fell on the garage we just put a new roof on, that is always the way it goes.  So keep stopping in, and this time it is not about reading my stuff, it is about the people of the Texas Coast.

Thanks

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Harvey is coming right for us! 8/24/17.

FISH CATCHING TRAVEL

Brought to you by: waderight2-50

** For a super deal on your Wade Right use promo code FCT15 and get 15% off on your online order!**

Thursday Morning – Here It Comes

You know when the bald dude from the Weather Channel shows up it could be bad.  The pressure is dropping, it is continuing to form and getting stronger by the hour, and it is headed right for POC.  Yikes!  We have gone from a Tropical Storm Warning to a real Hurricane Warning.  It now looks like it will make landfall somewhere close with winds hitting 75 – 110 depending on how it continues to grow.  The storm surge on the coast will be 3 – 6 feet as it currently forecast, but it all depends on how it grows, but 6′ is more likely.  No matter what it is going to smack us, and from the looks of things flooding will be the real problem and will be ugly.  They are talking some nonsense like the potential to rain 12″ in nothing flat!  If it rains like it is forecast, 3 days solid, it will be a real disaster, especially for the folks from south of Houston into Louisiana where they are already saturated.

It is 6:30 am Thursday morning as I write this.  The Boss had airline reservations out of Austin this morning as she heads to Iowa for her parents estate sale.  We did not make reservations for me not knowing a couple of weeks ago whether I would be cleared for travel and lifting at the sale.  She is slated to return on Sunday evening, so that could sure be up in the air.  We have made alternative plans should her flight be cancelled, just have to see how it plays out.  I just filled up the 4Runner and will batten down the hatches today.  Our home is on a high spot and with this forecast to be a real rain event the house should be fine.  As far as supplies I am good for days so no shopping.  If the crowd at the gas station is any indication the grocery stores will be nuts today.  Not sure how this is going to shake out but I am ready for a couple of days of hanging out, then if it floods helping anyone who needs it.

Of course the power going out is a real problem should it occur, but if nothing else will hang at my buddy Jeffish’s place and have a little hurricane party.  Every disaster goes a little better with beer.  Stay tuned, I will blog constantly over the next few days, and as soon as I can safely get out I will be out taking pictures, but of course staying the heck out of the way.  If it gets ugly the emergency folks do not need anyone adding to the confusion.  And the weather channel just now said the pressure is really dropping and the winds are above 60 mph with the possibility of a cat 2 or even a 3.  It is like watching a car wreck in supper slow motion.  I have never heard “Victoria” more on the news in my life!   Hope you are all ready!

Wednesday

Headed in.

After a trip to Academy for some 1/4 and 3/16th slip sinkers I took care of a couple of yesterday’s boating issues and at 3:00 I headed to the lake.  I wanted to be sure that everything is working properly before I start hitting the coast next week, depending on how what could be nothing more than a big rain event, all the way to a real hurricane.

It was 99 degrees when I hit the lake.  It is still falling, though that will change, and the water temp was still in the mid 90’s.  I immediately headed up lake to where I wacked them yesterday.  The wind was fairly flat and there were thunderstorms here and there.

I was glad to have this one before being run off.

To make a long story short I put 6 or 7 in the boat on the watermelon red beaver style plastic, but other than this one they were really small.  Then about 6:00 I thought something was falling off the trees when those huge drops started falling, almost like hail.  There was a few flashes of lightning in the distance so I called it a short day and headed to the house.  So much for the Boss being gone and fishing till I puke.

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Check them out.  The best new plastics on the market.

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I got a couple of nice welcome back comments and wanted to share them with you.

Glad to hear you are back in the game!  Good luck and look forward to reading about your coming up adventures!

Thanks for the comment Ross, hope you enjoyed yesterdays.  It won’t be long, depending on how the weekend goes, before I will be back on the coast, it can not be soon enough.  And I got this one from Jimmy and it is right on point this weekend on the Texas Coast

Great to have you back. I sure missed the reports. I will be heading to POC just to collect boats and batten down the hatches. Keep the reports coming!

Hope it does not come here as bad as it might, but this could be ugly.  (And now it is, it really has intensified since I wrote this Wednesday.)  Depending on how it goes since I have the weekend free I will be out documenting things if it comes like it might.  And my buddy Faye and her husband are trying to decide if they are coming down to pick up their boat out of a storage building at POC.  And I got this just now as the possibility of getting something ugly intensifies according to the weather channel.

Good to see you back out there! Looking good with the fish. That first bite and hookup had to be sweet. Stay safe this weekend!!

Jim

It was.  I did not take a picture of the first one, one of 5 or 6 small ones, but trust me I was just has happy as I was with the big one. As I am writing this it is Wednesday afternoon, and by time I get the post of this afternoon’s fishing up tomorrow we should have a pretty good idea of what we are facing.  Thanks all for your comments.

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That is all for this morning.  Pray for the folks right on the coast, this has the potential to be a real freakin’ disaster.  I am as ready as I can be and though I am not concerned for my safety I really am concerned for folks on the coast.  6 foot of storm surge will decimate places like POC.  So here we go.  Keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.

Good Luck and Tight Lines

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Coleto Creek 8/23/17.

FISH CATCHING TRAVEL

Brought to you by: waderight2-50

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Shallow Wood and Cover

After what seemed like forever I got to take that simple step, one I have taken for granted, and hitched up the boat around 4:00 and headed to Coleto.  It was 97 degrees on the truck temp gauge and I was a little concerned not having been on the lake for 2 months, the longest stretch in years.  I wasn’t worried, just happy to be there, but it helps when you boat a big one.

This one started it off and 4 or 5 of the dozen were like this.

The wind was blowing 15 – 20 out of the SSE and it was hot.  The lake is clearly down and has a tint of color to it which slowly gets a little milkier as you go up lake.  The water temp was 94.8 at the ramp and 92 up lake.  The ramp is getting shallower, and while the lake needs the water we sure don’t need what may be coming.  But to just take a boat ride, the old wind in the hair thing as I headed way up lake and it felt great.

24″ of big girl.  Great way to get back in the groove.  And as side note, they are full piss and vinegar right now and fight like crazy.

This may seem funny, but I had a good idea what I should throw, but I just had to start with a buzzbait.  After just a couple of quick places and 2 half hearted bites, it was clear, stop it.  Next it was both a white and then a crawdad swim jig, and not a one took a pass.  One thing that is helpful with the blog, just search this month in years past and you have a pretty good starting point, and this month the senko style bait (A note to those of you just getting into fishing:  A Senko is a trade name and when I use it I use it generically, it is simply a 5″ stick worm with no twister or paddle tail.)  in watermelon red has been a consistent producer in the past, and guess what, that was the ticket.  I was throwing it on 30lb braid with a 20lb fluoro leader and a 3/16th slip sinker on a 5/0 worm hook with a short hop and drop retrieve.  And a word on the hook, even though I throw it around cover and wood I personally prefer the finer wire, easier to sink the hook and I rarely lose one in cover, though I did today.

I got a bite on my second cast, and until I quit at 8:00 they bit consistently in most places I tried if it had wood cover.  They tended to be around wood, or what little heavy shoreline grass there is on the deeper banks, and the deepest fish I caught was maybe 5 feet.  It was surprising how shallow they were, from way up lake to coves close to the ramp.  Before I quit it was an easy 10 – 12 fish with around a 15lb limit, it would have been a lot heavier except for the other nice one I had on came off in a bush top and another one that broke off when I set the hook.  They were quite a bit shallower than I would have guessed.  And the bite was different in that I only felt a couple eat it, most were just swimming with it when I lifted it up.  It took a little while to get back in the groove, and I missed several due to the funny way they were biting, but considering things I actually fished fairly well.  And for a short evening trip it was great.

One last one for the road.

As it got a little later I went back to the buzzbait just to see if there was a late bite, and while there may be, I did not find it.  With the wind there were some places that were to rough for the buzzbait and I finally called it a day.  I was pleasantly surprised how shallow they were and how many bites I got.  Today was a short trip that I would have been happy with anytime, but it was particularly satisfying today.

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Check them out.  The best new plastics on the market. 

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Now it was not all roses and rainbows out there.  It has always amazes me how a boat just sitting there that ran perfectly before it got parked can bring out the gremlins.  First it did not want to start, somehow the nut on the battery was lose.  Then when I dropped the trolling motor in the water nothing, so back under the console and again somehow another nut worked it’s way loose.  Crazy.  Then I managed to idle in to the bank and hit the bottom, it really has dropped, but no harm no foul.  And there are many more deep tree tops coming up so be careful if you go.  Then when I got in the truck to put it on the trailer one of the bunks came half off, somehow a couple of the screws came out of the bunk.  I hate it when that happens.  Luckily I have tools with nuts and bolts for all occasions in my travel supplies to it was a quick fix.  Shit happens but being so happy to be there none of it was a big deal.  These are the moments when you can get frustrated, but after my long lay off nothing was going to get me down.

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The Boss is taking off for Iowa for the weekend I was looking forward to 3 days of fishing, but looking at the weather that is not going to happen anywhere in this area.  We have not had a major hurricane event in a while and it is looking like we might have one this weekend.  It is not to often that the forecast, ours for Friday, has the wind projected to increase to 40 to 60 mph, then Saturday it will blow in the 25 to 4o mph.  Holy mackeral!  It will be a matter of sitting back and letting it play out here, but after recently touring the Gulf Coast as far as Mississippi, it is already saturated from constant rain and it could be really ugly in Houston and New Orleans.  So hope for the best, those folks have already had enough this year and we sure do not need a direct landfall.

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It is good to be back and it was nice to boat a few fish.  Guess I have not lost what little touch I had.  Today it is going to be in the high 90’s but I will be out there later today after I do a complete going over of the boat.  It was easy to not get excited with the boat gremlins yesterday, but time to make sure none of that happens again.  As far as the rest of the week it will be a wait and see proposition.  So keep stopping in and thanks for reading my stuff.

Good Luck and Tight Lines

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