In the last two weeks I have caught 13 smallmouth. What makes it special to me is they all have been in the 3-6 pound-plus range, no small fish. There was one spotted bass in the bunch that would push three pounds.
Also I’m not fishing over four hours at a time to catch them. I have too much stuff to do at the house to spend all day on the water. Now some might say that catching no more fish than that for time spent is no fun. As my retired fireman friend Charlie Hill says, fishing is a plus if you catch a boatload or one.
Being outdoors on the water on a beautiful day enjoying God’s handy work is worth as much as catching a fish. Catching fish is just the icing on the cake. I’ll add to his statement this little fact — you don’t need a church or building or a preacher to talk to the Creator; the call is free and his line is always open. Just be thankful if you are able to get out on the water, there are a lot of people out there who would love to do it but for some reason can‘t.
Last Sunday, fishing with my friend Johnny Unerfusser, was the first time I have failed to catch a bass. We couldn’t even catch a striper or sandbass under the gulls. I had one bass on for a short time before he got off. It was one of those days called fishing, not catching.
Not able to stand it that I had struck out on Sunday, Tuesday I went fishing again. After hitting three of my spots for about an hour each, two of which were empty of fish, at my last stop throwing a White 1/4 oz. Blakemore Road runner with a YUM 3.5 inch Money Minnow soaked in YUM F2 Shad scent I caught two smallies — a 4.15-pounder and a 3.6-pounder weighed on my Bill Dance scales.
Not having anyone to take a picture and not a soul on the lake around me, I laid them on the back deck, got my phone and they didn’t want their picture took. They went every which way. I was snapping pictures every time I could guess where they were going next. I don’t like to let them flop like that as it might make some of the slime that protects the fish get rubbed off.
I don’t think it hurts them as much in the cold water as it does when it’s hot. I have the pictures on my phone for any doubters but they won’t make the paper.
While fishing the same small area for an hour is something most fishermen won’t do, for me it’s my bread and butter in cold weather. Now I don’t expect everyone to fish like I do. Each bass fisherman has their fishing strong points and their methods might work better than mine, to each his own. I’m not a gas burner if I can help it.
While I’m concentrating on Texoma smallmouth now, Mike Corzine the Cement (YETI) I talk about now and then while fishing in a Red River Bass Club event on Texoma, weighed in a 7.33-pound largemouth. I heard they also had some healthy smallmouth come to the scales.
Most of the fish I’m catching are already egging up getting ready for the spawn. We still have February to go and if we get cold weather it’ll likely slow them down for a while. I don’t know what Mike caught his big bass on, the boats I see out all seem to have an A Rig and Jerk bait tied on along with a what looks like a Jig and chunk, a bait some Texoma Bass fishermen swear by in cold water.
Just because it’s uncomfortable to be out in the wind and cold this time of year from now to April will be your best chance to catch your biggest bass ever. A big smallmouth wallowing around on top of the water will warm you up in a hurry.
Be prepared for a lot of bass boats on our roads and in the water next week. There is a Texas High School Bass tournament coming to Texoma hosted, if I’m not mistaken, by the Gunter High School Bass Club on February 10.
I’ve seen a lot of strange boats on the water from the bank as I move around. They moved the event from Lake Ray Hubbbard due to a conflict in tournaments. There will likely be over 200 -300 student anglers competing.
Last Sunday Johnny and I talked to several boats with student anglers in them. I wish I had half their energy. They all should catch fish but it might be work, especially as February can be a bugger bear weather wise. The weigh-in will be at Highport Marina. I’ll have more on this as it approaches.