Something's Fishy!

I had a potential charter for Saturday morning that never materialized, but with conditions prime, this was the morning to cast care to the wind and go for it.

Equipped with a fast boat, two rods, a couple extra plastic baits, and bottled water, I headed out to Lake Decade before daylight in anticipation that this would be the day.

My special spot was waiting for my arrival, just before the sun peaked over the trees.  Hoping the trout were there, I wondered when they would be ready for breakfast.  All I could do was cast and see what happened.

It took a little trolling around, and a dozen or so preliminary casts, but by the time the sun shone fully on the lake, the trout were awake and feeding.

Off in the distance a clump of boats, bunched together, jockeyed for perfect position for trout catching.  I have this theory, though, that most fishermen are like sheep.  They rush to the lake, without a game plan, and once there, look around to see where the most boats are congregated.  Figuring that is where the trout are holed up, they head there with full force, and the competition for casting space is on.

Not me.   A couple honey holes have revealed themselves to me over years of fishing this lake and have consistently yielded fish when conditions were right.  One has only to learn to read a lake and look for the fishy water. Additionally, those ideal conditions make the difference between a good day fishing and a great day catching!

Typically, speckled trout and reds roam the same waters, competing for food; and while some people target reds, they were by-catch for me on this trip.  Unless I have plans to grill a fresh red the day of the catch, I usually give them away to road-side fisherfolks who look like they could use a fish or two.  Other times, they get tagged and released.

After a nice round of catching, I took a little break from the action and thought about my readers, wishing you could experience the magnificence of the morning  In so doing, I lost track of the fish.  Shortly, an older gentleman, also fishing solo, trolled closer and closer to my little area.  Before long, he found the fish and began reeling them in every other cast.

Not wanting to intrude on his good fortune, and since I already had a box full of trout, I nonchalantly cast on the perimeter of the hot spot. After my four nonproductive casts, he hollered at me,

“Hey what you fishing with?”

“A Blue Moon” I answered.

“Oh, you need to be fishing with a glow and chartreuse–anything that looks like a shrimp.”

Humoring him, and not wanting to refute his advice, I fumbled around in the on-board tackle box looking for a glow bait.  When I looked up, he was trolling over to me, a package of baits in his hand.

“Here.  This is what you need.  I been picking off fish along the bank since daylight, and the bite just now turned on!  That bait works good because it’s impregnated with garlic and it has great tail action!”

I thanked him, told him I’d also been there since daylight, and promptly slipped one of his baits on my hook.  A few casts later, the wind changed and the bite shut down.

He didn’t bother to ask me if I had caught anything.  If I had opened my box and shown him a limit of trout and one big red, I wonder if he would have asked for his baits back?  He was a nice man who was willing to help a gal out and share his favorite baits.  I was very appreciative, and therefore decided against showing him how well my Blue Moon had served me.

With the first limit of the Decade fall season under my belt, I felt on top of the world–almost euphoric.  As I pulled up the trolling motor and waved goodbye to my new fishing friend, a growing group of “sheeple” boats continued their trolling dance for those speckled yellow mouths.  I just idled around them, smiled and waved as I left them to their trolling ballet!

Most of these trout had empty stomachs, indicating that they were indeed very hungry and that I had hit them at just the right time.

One of them had  in its belly a shrimp so fresh I could have sworn it was still alive when it fell out of the stomach, its rostrum pricking my finger.

The filleted fruits of my labor, piled high, remind me what a wonderful life we live on the bayou, with an abundance of marine life just a short boat ride away.  Trout fillets like this are hard to beat when it comes to a versatile fish.  They are good pan seared, fried, baked, broiled, and grilled.

There’s just something so mind-clearing and invigorating about a gorgeous, productive morning of fishing and catching.  If you haven’t been bitten by the fishing bug, I feel kind of sorry for you.  There’s just nothing else quite like it.

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  1. Your pictures of your world around you make me homesick! When I get back we have to head out onto the water so I can enjoy your surroundings. You live in a beautiful place!

  2. Lovely pics and a great writeup! Just reading and drinking in the pictures upped my serenity quotient for the day. Thank you, BW.

  3. Beautiful photos. Nice catch too. My hubby loves trout and I buy and cook it for him once or twice a year. But, neither of us can fillet a fish to save our souls. I just cheat and buy them pre-cleaned.

  4. My Grandpa was an avid fisherman, your stories remind me of growing up on his boat, fishing and just sitting together enjoying the quiet. He was a Navy man and felt it his duty to teach me to swim, overhaul a boat motor (sometimes in the water, lol), trailer a boat and would purposely get me lost on the lake and make my find my way back to the dock. Gosh, I miss him. Thanks for the gentle reminders.

  5. Dangities this thing is about the longest thing I read since Orwell’s Down and Out in Paris and London. That is a complement, cher.

    2 kinds of women fish. Those that catch and those that make relief over the side awkward at best.

    Gonna be a cold wet snowy week here. I am ready to head back.

    Locals I saw while there do not fish between 9 and 3. I just waited them out.

    Hey whatever happened to Orange Crush? Did Rootbeer out fish it?

    1. Some men make relief over the side awkward at best, too, Blu! I have fished with quite a few fellas, and none of them have had one second of trouble taking relief! It’s a natural function and if you keep talking, nobody gives a rip! Besides, the sound of fast and furious trout action drowns out the dribble! LOL!

  6. i really love to read your fishing reports,unlike many on the other fishing forums.i get the sense i was there with you watching as a bystander in the back of the boat….

          1. If “Has Hubby ever let you have the front” for me, he’s offered many times but I always pass. Usually when he offers, he’s being a Butthead. It’s just more pleasant (for every one around) to stay at the back of the boat and count to 10,000! You know how sound (raised voices) travels across water. LOL!

  7. great post

    you mentioned that, on Day 2, the intuders might be clueless, or rookies. Both are too generous – they were morons. Your point made on Day 1 was absolutely on the mark – just because I’M on fish doesn’t mean they are the only fish on the lake. Pay atention to patterns , pay attention to bait movement, and find the fish that re set up to take advantage of the situation. Don’t crowd me out

    keep up the great postts, BW!


  8. Oh, and BTW – I haven’rt missed ALL of your Community Coffee contests!!! I’ll pay closer attention.

    Thanks for stopping by over my way


  9. I got a package from Community today, nice looking coffee scoop in it. Cant wait for breakfast to figure it out. I may even start sticking out me pinky finger while drinking coffee now.

    Thank you again.

  10. I’ll holler at ’em for ya. Then they can’t get mad at you – just me, the crazy customer from out of town!

  11. BW, just had a phone call asking what your name is. Seems TarBaby mentioned you in an article he wrote for the local paper. Y’all check it out at weeklycitizen.com. Search sports. It’s a nice article.

    1. Thanks for letting us know about Tar Baby’s article, Steffie. It seems this is how the wonderful worldwide web works. He found Wolfy’s site from my comment section, where he is giving away tons of bass fishing gear in a random drawing …. an idea I hope he reaped from this blog . . . and entered the contest, which got him thinking about bass fishing! Anyway, Tar Baby is an award winning writer and photographer and TV show host who has his feelings hurt that he wasn’t in the boat with me last Saturday! (right TB?) I had no clue he had written the little article, and it’s mostly about bass fishing, which TB and I have done together, too! I’m wondering if TB saw the bass in the pics a few posts back? LOL! And now he’s got me wondering why he didn’t leave a comment on Something’s Fishy! Anyway, I’ll be sure and thank him, and thanks again!

      1. Well, I thought about giving you a call to fish that weekend and I’m still sort of wishing I could kick my own rear end for not calling. Yeah, I saw them, but “by-catch”! Gimme a break! LOL!

    2. While you’re there, click on the Lagniappe tab at the top/right. Then click on the Gumbo (magazine) tab on the left. When it opens, select the 1/01/2009 date tab and you can read a magazine article I wrote, “There’s a Lady at the Helm” aka Captain Wendy.

      1. Or just go HERE and the article starts on Page 20. Thanks a bunch, TB!!! Well, how much notice do you need for a quick trip to Decade? And how early on a Fri. morning can you leave home? LOL! That trip last January was probably the coldest morning of the winter down here!

  12. Hee hee….. Guess I’ll go look at the green carp site. Wacked a few dink striped ones and sacaulaits yesterday. Ice on lakes is starting to form. Even in the nuke lake I fished.