Friday afternoon was my last fishing trip of the year. From a catching standpoint, 2016 came to an end with a fizzle instead of a bang. No worries though, yakking Lady P never fails me in the soul-lebration department. Insides were full of uuuhs & aaahs and as always I can’t wait till next trip!
Thursday night drinks and Friday morning temps had me in no rush whatsoever. A flash in my clouded mind signaled that Lakeshore Estates is where I shall go. I have very little experience up in there, but memories of a boat ride to the area with Catchin’Capt Buddy would point me in the right direction.
Sloth speed prepping & loading ensued, with on board snacks last on the list. These items are important cause trust me muscle cramps and dehydration are no fun when yakking brah. Loaf in da fridge was stale as hell, but my PB&Js were made with high hopes that once all ingredients were placed inside a magic-bake oven (aka, my hull) then mythical chemical reactions would change the bread to the taste & texture of a fresh off the line loaf of Bunny Plantation! Well, that didn’t pan out at all. Sandwiches were eaten on the water, and their purpose was served.
Unloaded at Salt Bayou bridge launch just before noon. Three guys were chicken stringing for crabs and having a blast doing so. Water moving out pretty good. Using only my rudder, I had a one-against-none yak shalom race using crab floats as the flags. It was a photo finish, but I won the race!!! Passed the massive “Green Gold” and marveled at her golden aged beauty. Thought about what amazing sights she’s seen over the decades, and wished I could hear some of her stories.
Eased past some of my fin eating feathered friends who were laid up on the rocks. Knew it was a bad sign but didn’t care, floating Lady P life already good so far. Started slinging lures in eastofmrgo’s favorite intersection. Third cast yielded a tap, and I smiled. By cast 20 I had two 14 inchers in my bag, and I was excited. Reckon it was around cast 50 without so much as even a peck, when I concluded that it’s not gonna be as easy as I first thought.
Constantly moved around, covered a ton of new to me area, noted & saved many come back to one day floor anomalies, finder was blank for the most part. Each of my last 3 of 5 legal specks were caught one at a time in their all alone own spot. Monotony was broken by startling breaches of the fattest of gars I’ve seen in awhile. Passed about five other boats. All were friendly talkers catching about the same as me. Largest creel I heard was 6 aboard a party barge that increased their catching efficiency by trolling 4 lines.
Water was green & gorgeous with a good three foot visibility. Tasted the slightest bit of salt. Breezy start, no wind end. Water moving out while I caught my only keepers. Finder operating properly was confirmed by me not seeing a single loon in any of the canals I visited. Tight lined softies in various shapes & colors. H&H plumtruese paddle caught 4, SW Assassin opening night straight tail caught 1. Finally started marking small groups of fishes while making my trek out of there. Steady barrage of short striking slaps no matter what I threw to the new marks. Two lucky bullseye pops & a belly hooking revealed that it was 8-10 inchers moving in. I continued to move on out.
Re-entry into the Lake revealed a splendid winter early sun downing. Aaahhh…. anchor-less sitting at the mouth of Salt Bayou with the crab boats coming in to unload their haul. Pole down, feet up, soaking up the view while eating my second stale bread smmamwich. Yakking Lady P Life was good brah, real good.
Truck loaded up just after 4pm. Chatted with the still jovial chicken stringers. Opened their cube chest and saw it was full of beautiful #1s with the brightest of blue claws! Cool chaps they were, I imagine their boil will be just as much fun as their string fest was.
Drove home fully satisfied with 2016’s fishing finale. Stopped and bought a new loaf of bread.
Tight lines, dripping paddles, and creaking pedals to all… brah