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WATER STILL RUNS DOWNHILL

 

Last updated 1/7/2019 at Noon



Immediately after catching the largest trout I had caught on Sabine in

the past two years, Mother Nature buried us in a two day downpour that

left bottom land inundated all over east Texas.Once again, those

suffering the most damage were those residing in close proximity to the

Sabine River.

I mention that fish only because I thought at the time that we may have

finally turned the corner on the horrendous trout fishing we experienced

most of 2018.The water clarity that day was more akin to wet dirt, but

there was still enough salinity to hold the trout.

The fact that we have since had two pretty good outings with the redfish

was encouraging, but we haven’t caught the first trout.We had been

wading to catch our specks, but just couldn’t find a good reason to

climb out of the boat following the flooding.

We have been blessed with dry skies the past two days, but we are far

from purging just the water still exiting both Sam Rayburn and Toledo

Bend.Rayburn is approximately seven feet high and Toledo Bend is a foot

above full pool level with all of the gates open three feet.Amazingly

enough we can handle that much discharge without any additional

flooding, but it remains the pits for those that have done little more

than rebuild over the past four years!

Convinced that it was going to rain forever, I accepted an unexpected

invitation to duck hunt in a stretch of flooded river bottom north of

Rayburn last week.“All you have to do is drive up here,” said Gary

English.“The ducks are all over us and I’ve got you a gun, shells and a

pair of hip boots.”

We eventually ate a great lunch, but never saw the first duck.Meanwhile

his son and a friend limited less than a mile away…..so what’s new!

Half way through too much chicken fried chicken, a friend of Gary’s

joined us long enough to ask him about some land clearing work.“I have

time right now,” replied Gary.His friend encouraged him to start that

afternoon.“I haven’t fished since they shut down two ramps we normally

use due to the flooding and now a bunch of them are shut down because of

the government.The president ain’t no bass fisherman or he’d take care

of that problem.”

The only two parks I checked on the way home were indeed closed, but

there was a soggy handwritten note at the entrance of one of them with

the name of the nearest ramp you could still use.Bass fishermen are

tight lipped as a rule, but they will take care of each other.

I also made a quick trip over to T-Bend and I am always amazed at the

power of water exploding through the gates.It is incredibly loud and it

is devastating for anything in its path.As I drove south the visible

flow of standing water weakened, but neither road I briefly looked at

granted access all the way into Cow Creek.

Owning a camp on the creek over the past few years has generated far

more work than fun.How many times can you rebuild before you just say,

“To heck with it!” I guess lots of people are asking the same thing

about folks that continue to rebuild on the coast.

In the meantime, the river will hopefully have crested by the time you

read this and we can start ridding ourselves of this excess of fresh

water.Thus far, the redfish bite has held up, but I haven’t personally

spoken with anyone catching trout.

I don’t believe the fresh water will wash out the trout that have once

again moved back into the lake, but good luck trying to catch them

drifting in your boat.Easily the most consistent bite involved wading a

relatively small area and being patient.Pay attention to tide changes

and major feeding periods.

If you elect to simply ride it out a little longer you can scratch your

fishing itch by driving over to Houston for the Boat Show at the Reliant

Center.Every year I am semi-shocked by the price tag attached to a new

bass boat or center console bay boat.I bought my first house on the same

payment terms.

There will be some vendors there, especially rod builders, but as a rule

not many guides.The majority of them have already reserved booths at the

Fishing Show in Houston in early March.

 

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