That’s not a common header for the start of a fishing article. I’m going to vent a little after this weekend. It might make some of you mad but here it is.
I have no use for Jet Skis. Now it’s not the skis’ faults; it’s the riders. The people driving them is the problem. Not all riders; 90 percent of the people riding them show courtesy and common sense and obey the laws. Those people I have no problem with.
My gripe is what happened to me Sunday morning. What happened Sunday isn’t right. Texas has Game and Fish laws which these people evidently don’t know or don’t care about. They could get a free TP&W Rules book at any place selling tackle but I’m willing to bet most of them don’t care or have time to read it.
Sunday, I didn’t put in until about 9 a.m. as there was no use in getting in a hurry. The smallmouth I wrote about that Charlie and I got on last week for three out of the next four days were there every morning at 9:40 a.m. They stayed about 30 minutes or less and then were gone.
Now this isn’t the first time I have seen smallmouth do this. Several years ago, long before he retired, I told Bruce Hysmith, who was then the head of the Texoma Fisheries Station, that I had smallmouth doing this. It was in July or August in the heat of the day. At exactly noon they were there.
He gave me a doubting look so I took him fishing. I give him a Rebel Pop R. We pulled up on the point and I told him to get ready. You could see a doubting look in his eyes. What I had found was on the bluffs along Eisenhower State Park. Big schools of shad would come down the bank; you could see the dark cloud of shad in the clear water. There was a big rock on the point and the shad had to come up to go over it and that’s when the smallmouth showed up.
Bruce was tied into a big smallie almost when his lure hit the water. We both caught fish. It was hard on my trolling motor as the fish would blow up on the other side of the point; I would run over there then they would come up where we had left. When the fish finally left, he just shook his head and didn’t say much. Actually, he did — and everyone who knows Bruce, including me, knows he isn’t afraid of talking.
Sunday, I ran up to the point and got ready to fish, stopping about a cast off from the bank. I put down my trolling motor and just went back and forth guarding it. Two older men in a boat evidently thought I was catching stripers and started coming in on me. When I asked them if they were going to cut me off, they quickly turned and went out, giving me a wide berth. I thanked them, they waved and all was well.
There were two Jet Skis and a ski boat not far away on the bank. As I kept going back and forth casting now and then a lady with two grandkids in tow came down from one of the houses on shore. She started getting one Jet Ski ready. She put one grandkid in front of her, started up, made a fast circle that was uncalled for and started out into the lake.
She was cutting right across between me and the bank. I yelled and motioned to her to go out around me as I was fishing. With a child probably 4 or 5 in front of her she began tearing into me. I talked back, telling her I was fishing that point and she should go out around me. For a Grandma, impressing her grandchildren by talking like that was wrong also.
All at once she put the hammer down and flew across the point between me and the bank, missing me by less than 20 feet. She made a circle out in the lake, coming back fast, and just before she got even with me, she spun it around, showered me and left a big swell rolling in on me.
If that wasn’t bad enough, the owner of the Ski boat showed. The grandma put the Ski on the bank, pointing out at me and talking to him. I have no idea who these people were but evidently, they thought they owned the lake. He got in the boat — with his wife I’m guessing — and the other grandchild.
He started it up and put the pedal to the metal and came flying by between the shore and me. He was lucky because you could hear the props ticking those rocks. It wasn’t bad enough to ruin his weekend but he shut it down quick after he had crossed them and idled on out. Then he began going in circles, rolling waves in on me again. To say the least no respectable smallmouth would come any where near the point now.
From watching TV and reading the newspaper I can see us turning into a nation who has lost common sense, courtesy and respect for America. It’s showing up even in the outdoors. I’m old and can take with me memories of what a great nation we once were when I go.
I don’t know if the woman who started all the trouble lives out here or not but she should read the book. Texas has a law that forbids anyone from harassing or otherwise bothering hunters or fishermen. If I could have remembered her TX number and thought I could get a Game Warden there I would have pressed charges. Instead, as my day was ruined, I left this “Queen of the Lake” and went back to the house. Not many years ago this would never have happened. We seldom ran into a mean person and by showing a little courtesy, we all had a good time.
Sorry I have nothing to write about fish-wise. Charlie and I were going Thursday and see if we could catch anything. He called me at 5 a.m. Thursday and said it was very still and going to be hot. We are retired so we just decided to go fishing when it was a little cooler.
Remember on the water, on land, or anywhere else, let’s all show some respect and courtesy to each other. I feel better now.