MORE TO FISHING THAN CATCHING
Last updated 2/4/2020 at Noon
“It’s really kind of crazy the way fishing goes through cycles,” said Ronnie Lott.“Forty years ago when I was working in a refinery every plant or refinery had a bass club.At least over here, they just kind of died out when gas got so high and for some reason the bass fishing on Rayburn got so tough!” “In the mid 80”s most of the really good bass fishermen I had competed against stayed closer to home and started chasing trout and redfish.When folks found out how many big trout we had in the lake, the Bay boat business just exploded.” Lott continued reminiscing while filling the gas tank on his boat.“I haven’t only gone from bass fishing to trout fishing and back to bass fishing,” he pointed out.
“I’ve gone from aluminum john boats to bass boats to a Center Console and back to an aluminum bass boat.” “Following Harvey, I parked my 22-foot Pathfinder in storage and I haven’t fished out of it since.Local bass fishing is probably better now than it ever was and my grandson and I do all of our fishing out of this aluminum Express bass boat.” At least genetically, Lott’s twelve year old grandson has a leg up on most of his friends when it comes to developing his fishing skills.
Not only does he have a grandpa with a world of fishing knowledge, but one that will take the time to share it with him.
A lot of Dads and grandpas are missing the boat, no pun intended, when it comes to spending quality time with their youngsters.
“We fish at least one day every weekend and most every holiday,” says Lott through a beaming smile.“Don’t get me wrong…we both enjoy catching fish,” but even when the bite is tough, the benefits are endless.Gordon appreciates and respects everything that has to do with the outdoors, we leave any and all problems at home, look forward to launching the boat and hate putting it back on the trailer at the end of the day.
And it usually starts with a pre-dawn breakfast burrito!” Lott also pointed out that while it may surprise some, he can attest to the fact that kids don’t really need cell phones and video games to fill their free time.“When we fish, I bring my phone for any emergencies, but Gordon leaves his in the truck.Aside from school work, most of his time spent on his computer involves watching fishing techniques on You Tube.” I was recently visiting with Bob Crew, an Orange angler that was fishing the marshes from Black’s Bayou to the Sabine Game Reserve before there was a Toledo Bend and a 9.8 horse power motor was a big engine and he readily agrees with Lott’s assessment.
“I raised my boys and their friends fishing and hunting and those trips still represent some of the most memorable days of our lives,” said Crew.
“I no longer have to catch a single fish to enjoy a day on the water.What else can I do that affords me the opportunity to witness a gorgeous sunrise, watch the wildlife react to an approaching norther or scan the sky for the haunting sound of geese headed southward?It will always be a rush!” I couldn’t agree more with either assessment or the possibility that local bass fishing may indeed be better than ever before.During the early sixties we took the incredible bite for granted, but while numbers were no problem, a four pound bass drew a crowd! That is no longer the case.
The Sabine, the Neches and area marshes all have the potential to regularly yield bass in excess of six pounds and the average size bass today is much better.
We have even seen a pair of nine pound fish over the past couple of years and there was a time when we thought we would never see bass that heavy on Toledo Bend.It is most likely that our larger bass are kinfolk of the Florida strain that escaped both Rayburn and Toledo Bend.
Aside from the fact that the bass fishing is continuing to improve, the best part is that it is happening right here in our backyard.Mother Nature plays a huge role in this resurgence, but sustaining this resource is dependent on the fishermen.
Take a youngster fishing this week end and make him or her a partner in keeping it going!