Thursday, July 09, 2009

Video of four-wheeling through the pass

This is a video I shot with my cousin last week when we drove through Yarborough Pass from the beach side to get to the Laguna Madre. We first checked to see that the pass was clear before he revved up and powered through the sand and the pass. I always feel like we are going to flip the truck but of course that doesn't happen. Enjoy...

Saturday, July 04, 2009

Potlickers and secret spots

I got the opportunity to head to Corpus Christi for a day and half to do some fishing with my cousin.

I got there on Thursday afternoon and we decided to fish the lights from one of the bridges. We got to the bridge just before sunset and loaded up the kayaks and paddled out to anchor before the lights from the causeway turned on. There was a strong outgoing tide and the wind was blowing from the opposite direction and so it was tricky anchoring in the right spot but we finally settled in. Nobody was around.

The lights soon turned on and we proceeded to fish. I caught a nice 16 1/2" speckled trout on shrimp fly that I had tied. I also caught a big ladyfish that jumped out of the water several times. My cousin caught a small snook and lots of small trout. At this point is when I noticed a small jon boat with two guys come by and then anchor in the next stall right in the center of the light. Aw man! Potlickers!

That word, "potlicker", needs some clarification because it can have many derogatory meanings in contexts other than fishing which is not the one I want to convey. That is not to say in the fishing context it isn't a derogatory term as it actually is. The best definition I found is from and old fisherman by the name of Earl Humphreys from Corpus who used it as far back as the '30s.
"A potlicker in fishing is a man who is too lazy to go find fish on his own, so he looks for someone who is already on fish and then he moves into that man's spot. He potlicks, he's a lazy bastard who depends on what others find or leave him."
His definition is exactly correct. These are the same folks that anchor in front of you when there are dozens of square miles of water around you and nobody else around and drop a line right where you are fishing. Sometimes I think they are plain ignorant and don't really think they are doing anything wrong. Sometimes I think they do know and are taking advantage of fisherman that did all the work to find fish.

The guys in the jon boat would cast where we were and after a while we told them to let us fish and go cast somewhere else. They pretended not to hear but eventually they just fished their stall and when I moved to a different spot, they took my spot over.

Anyways, I could go on and on about the many potlickers we have run into but that post would scroll off the page. Suffice it to say, we left after a while to leave these guys to fend for themselves. It seemed that after they moved in in the center of the light, the bite stopped.

The next day we decided to fish a remote "secret spot". It is actually not all that secret but we like to use code when speaking about where we are going while out in public. This time we were going to wade an area as opposed to kayaking.

After driving along the beach for an hour or so we saw a couple of signs which were interesting.

You better believe this sign!

This was one of the reasons that I got my CHL.

We got to the spot around 4pm and there was one truck there with two other wade fisherman. They had gone left so we went right.

The water looked good but was bathwater warm. We fished for about two hours with only one small red and a few small trout. We headed back in to drink something and rest for a few minutes then go back out.

As we got to the truck so did the other wade fisherman. My cousin went over to talk with them. We found out they had caught a few nice trout and where and on what. We also found out that one of the wader's blood sugar was dropping quickly and was diabetic. He asked us for soda but all we had to offer was some cold Gatorade. My cousin gave him one and one for his buddy as they left. Hopefully he got better because it was a long way from medical help where we were. There is no cell phone coverage that far out.

We headed back out to fish some more after they left. It was getting to the "magic hour" before sunset. Sure enough, the trout start getting aggressive and we had some steady action and some keepers. Before the sun hit the horizon, we started walking back because we had seen lots of stingrays in the area and they are harder to see at night.

After leaving and driving down the beach my cousin helped pull a Chevy SIlverado HD that had gotten too close to the water and sunk in the soft, wet sand.

As always, I had another set of fishing adventures with my cousin that we can reminisce about on some future fishing expedition. I am looking forward to the next one.