Big Rain, Great Company & Kayak Fishing

Big Rain, Great Company & Kayak Fishing

This is the account of the greatest, wildest & wettest trip that i have ever been on. All of us Know about the weather that moved through North Texas last Saturday morning. The smart one had cancelled their plans and were sawing logs to boom of thunder and the pater of rain on the window, some of my favorite sleeping conditions. I however, was outside loading gear and getting ready for an epic trip to southeast Texas and Lake Naconiche. The great thing about kayak fishing is you can always find someone as eager as you to make the trip and keep you company through the storm and long drive.

Jason and I pulled out of the driveway at 3:45 A.M. and all was well until we hit the biblical proportion of rain just outside of Dallas. This isn’t the type of rain where it is hard for a moment then lets you through. This rain was white knuckle, hydroplaning bad stuff. We eventually make it to the cut off west of Longview and that’s were the rain lightens up and we cruise to the lake with only the biggest of bass on our mind. As with any great road and not being familiar with the route we make a couple of wrong turns and have to do some back tracking to get back on the course. You have to watch those east Texas signs carefully sometimes they will point you in the wrong direction. Luckily for me I had Jason with me and he understands directions and schedules as he controls 45% of the free worlds railroad traffic. So with his instruction and choice words we make it to the lake.

It’s a miracle! The lake was calm and no sign of rain and we knew that this could be a magical day. Well, the rain and magic held off as the front blew in on us and soaked us for about four and a half hours. The cool thing was the action was steady enough and we caught enough quality fish to keep us from being miserable. The lake had changed over the last two years much like the weather of the day. When the lake opened it was a trophy bass lake and the stories of double digit after double digit were told. Today the DD’s are hard to come by and according to locals once they are caught they are either trucked off to farm ponds or dinner tables.  One thing that hadn’t changed was the scenery and the timber. If you like pitching timber than this lake is for you. It’s 92.5% standing timber with a lay down at every turn. I have a tough time deciding where to cast because it all looks so rich. The action stayed steady and the conversation remained fresh, the rain came and went so we ended up putting a solid eleven hours on the water. Learning about the lake, cracking jokes and trying to call the the ten pounders when we couldn’t keeps the two’s off the line.

After the long grind and extreme conditions of the day Jason and I headed back to the launch for the load up and the long drive home. No big road trip is ever complete without the Whataburger double cheese with onion rings and a massive chocolate shake. That is our perscription for a recovery meal after living on dried mangos and beef jerky all day. If you want to have a great time catching a ton of fish and you have a day to kill grab a fishing buddy and head down to Lake Naconiche. How knows you may just find the ten pounder and have an excellent adventure. Good friends make it easy to kayak fish so thanks Jason O. & KJ for the outstanding time.photo-40 photo-41

On The Hook – Understanding The Seasonal Pattern

Whatever you decide to do, whether it’s sales, construction, automotive or sports there is a learning curve to get past before you enter into the elite pro level. I have learned this lesson many times, thinking I had all the answers when it came to managing or selling situation only to find out I was massively off target. In talking with James Biggs, FLW Touring Professional, he shares his seasonal pattern advice.

When you are a rookie on the FLW no one does you any favors. The only help you receive is from your memory bank of practice and time on the water under similar conditions. When James Biggs rolls up to a new lake he spends time focusing on what his strength is. But before he hits the water he does his research. He goes online and looks at Google Earth and zeroes in on the what he believes the seasonal pattern will be. So mixing the seasonal patterns and online research will help you put more bass in the boat. Here are the four basic seasonal patterns:

  •  Winter Time Fun Time Where The Bass Hold To The Vertical Bluff Walls And Aren’t That Active.
  • Realize There Are Two Patterns Going On In The Spring. You Have Post Spawn Fish & Shad Spawn In The Northern Zone and Spawning Fishing In The Southern Zone.
  • Summer Brings The Bass Out Over Deep Water Holding To Deep Structure.
  • Fall The Bass Push The Shad Shallow & Begin The Feeding Frenzy Known As The Fall Feed Up

Once you understand the circle of the life pertaining to bass you will match your strength with the seasonal pattern and according to James Biggs, “That’s When The Magic Happens!” Time spent on the water studying and understanding what the season is bringing will make you an accomplished angler and prepares you for the next step in tournament fishing. For more insight and great information check out James Biggs Fishing.

KEEP LIVING THE DREAM!

Why I Kayak Fish

Stalking Shallow Water Bass In Silence

Stalking Shallow Water Bass In Silence

There is something about getting up before the sun and heading out to the lake. For me it really doesn’t matter if the fishing is hot or cold, but what matters are the surroundings and beauty of what the morning brings. People ask me why I kayak fish. Here are three reasons why kayak fishing works for me.
First, the kayak I use is the Hobie Pro Angler 14 and the way that it glides across shallow water is critical for my style of fishing. With the mirage tucked against the hull I can cruise some pretty skinny water. Kayak fishing allows me to stalk the fish in pure silence. It allows me to see nature unfold in slow motion waiting for the moment of impact.
Secondly, kayak fishing keeps you in shape. Whether you decide to paddle or pedal it doesn’t matter, you are active and burning off the bad decisions from the start of the week. By loading, unloading, standing and sitting it builds your core muscle and helps with balance. Those few things there contribute to a healthy lifestyle.
Third, the moment of impact is why I kayak fish. When you are working a grass line with a top water frog or stripping an Xcite Baits Ubershad through grass or pads the blow ups and violent strikes are out of this world. Pure Adrenaline!
We would love to know why you kayak fish and what you’re doing to support and grow the sport. Feel free to leave a comment and continue to do the great work of promoting a healthy life style that is awesome on the environment.

 

KEEP LIVING THE DREAM!

All You Have To Is Ask

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Who says all kids do is hang on the phone and hover around video games? All it took to get this guy out on the water was an invitation, turned out he’s a natural. The next generation depends on you.

It Was The Best of Times, It Was The Worst of Times!

The Hobie Pro Angler 14 Is A Solid & Stable FIshing Platform. This Kayak Allows Anglers To Carry Everything They Could Need For A Great Day Of Fishing

The Hobie Pro Angler 14 Is A Solid & Stable FIshing Platform. This Kayak Allows Anglers To Carry Everything They Could Need For A Great Day Of Fishing

Great Fish Using TFO GTS 7'-3" Heavy Rod. Great For Pitching Timber

Great Fish Using TFO GTS 7′-3″ Heavy Rod. Great For Pitching Timber

The world of sports is full of the folks that want the experience of being a pro, thus most all major sports operate a fantasy camp. These camps are designed to give you the experience of being a pro, for the weekend. You get to hang out in the locker room, play on the field and use all the facilities the big club uses. You are granted the feeling of being big time. This last weekend the Texas Kayak Bass Open Championship was held on Lake Houston County. This gave me the opportunity to feel like a big time bass pro. I spent weeks preparing, got to make a three hour drive to a lake that I have never fished and to also meet new and exciting people in the world of kayak bass fishing. The entire event went off without a hitch it was an excellent time.

I always enjoy discovering new thing and fishing new techniques. For the open championship I had received some information that the quality fish were holding in 12 – 15 feet and were right up against timber. Thursday afternoon I hit the water and used this pattern. In ½ day of fishing it didn’t disappoint, rendering 18” fish, right after another. My concern was that I didn’t have enough 10” Rage Tails to finish the weekend. I decided it was time to roll in a see if others had made it in. I called it a day and left them biting. Day 1 = Success and I was pumped.

It wouldn’t be a tournament without good food and great company. I had the privilege of sharing a room with Kayak Legend, Shaun Russell and Rod Building extraordinaire, Walker Nelson, and Media Giant, Chris Payne. We had an excellent time talking strategy, eating good food and just blowing off the hassles of life for couple days. As the night wore on more folks started coming up and it gave me the great pleasure of meeting the guys from Austin. I really like that crowd because they are diehards for the sport. It’s real cool to put out an open invite for an afternoon fish and have twenty guys show up with short notice. Congrats guys on the way you’re living the life down in the Cap City! Now time to sack out and get ready for the all day pre-fish.

Friday came and we were up with a bang! We all decided on 5:30, but as is when you’re excited it turned to 4:45. No worries, lot of gear to haul down to the ramp. Guess we weren’t the only folks that we ready because the water glowed with the looks of SuperNova Lights. Man these are very and definitely going to have to invest. Loaded gear and decided to try a different pattern for the morning. Word had it that there were large schools of big bass that hammer the shad right at first light. Enough said, I was on it! Hauled over to the spot, thanks to K.J. for the intel, but it didn’t happen for me. I quickly decided to dance with the one that brought me and head back to the timber. First flip and BAM, another 18” the pattern held all day and at the end of the day I was on 92”. What a day. I was already thinking of what I was going to do with all the prizes. I should have known that the end was near.

Saturday, D-Day, started with a calm fog over the lake. I figured this is different, but I didn’t sweat it. I pedaled the Hobie Pro Angler 14 right to the spot and waited on 6:00. Still no wind and began to get concerned. Time to fish so I attached to 10” Rage Tail and started flipping, by the 5th flip I had hooked and boated a nice 15” fish. I hate fishing in the dark, fumbling for the board, securing the fish, taking the photo. However, everything went great and I was stoked to be on the board. I had grand visions. I released the fish and then had the moment of sure panic. Did I or Did I not have the ID card in the picture?  I fished for the camera and son of a gun no ID, means not on the board and back to square 1. The morning yielded little other than rain, sun, light wind and calm. This effectively shut my pattern down and I knew I was toasted. I managed two keepers, with ID, and a ton of 10-12” fish. I realized that I

had put the eggs all in one basket and that doomed my day when the conditions changed. I was now looking forward to weigh in and the long drive home.
The overall experience was great. Bobby Clark did an excellent job as tournament director and I thought it was one of the better kayak events that I have attended. I remembered my thoughts of fantasy camp on the way home. For two and a half days I was a pro angler and I had checked all the boxes for a good a time: Friends, new experiences and success. Although I didn’t win it was worth the price of admission. Congrats to the winners and as Arnold says, “I will be back!”
KEEP LIVING THE DREAM!