I have heard the term “fish school” used to describe a lot of fish in one place. Well, Fish School can be harder to pass than regular school at times.
I got the idea that is the case because catching had been more of a job than fun on my side of the lake, and because last Saturday there was a high school tournament with more than 200 boats and weigh-in at Highport. The fish were released at the weigh-in site, and I saw a light bulb come on over my head.
Calling my fishing buddy Charlie Hill, I sold him a bill of goods on how we would catch some ABC fish in Highport. I had given those fish three days to recuperate.
With big expectations when I got to the ramp, Charlie was waiting on me. We launched and moved to the area where the fish were released. We worked that area for a while with different lures without a smell. Moving on down the bank we kept fishing the lakeside the fish were released on. We began to think it might be a Fish School holiday we didn’t know about and they were all gone.
We moved to a different area with the same results. Now we caught some things: rocks, cables, electric lines, water-soaked limbs, 50 feet of line someone had lost. Action was steady; just not what we were looking for. Finally, in 40 feet of water on a War Eagle Spoon he set the hook and put a sandbass in the boat.
We fished for another hour with nothing to show for time spent. We failed Fish School 101. I never got a bite or caught a fish. I did retire three of the five reels I had on the deck. Several different birds were sitting on the highlines and were bidding on the bird’s nest on those reels. As they say — a day fishing and being outside is better than a day at work, I agree. I’m thinking I need to go again Friday on my side of the Lake.
Wondering what all the bass boats were doing up here last Saturday? It was the first of three February events of Texas High School fishing. It took 16 pounds to win; 10th place was eight pounds.
Fast forward to this Saturday, February 21. The North Texas Division with our local schools in it will see another maybe 200-boat field go out of Highport or elsewhere as trailering is permitted. All boats must check in at Highport. The public is welcome with weigh-in starting at 3 p.m. Teams must be checked in by 4:30 p.m. or be disqualified. Sign-in will be at the Sherman Academy Store on Friday from 5-7 p.m. Teams must check in and get their wristbands that Texas Parks and Wildlife require to transport fish.
Next week, February 29, the Metroplex Division with another herd of boats will be on Lake Texoma with the same times and sites. They had to move their Tournament off Squaw Creek Lake to Texoma because it would put too many boats on Squaw Creek. We can expect another 200 boats in it. Once March gets here it will be a pretty good string of tournaments going on every weekend.
The water temp is still 49 and it doesn’t look like it’s going to get as cold as I like it.
If going fishing take someone with you if possible — 49-degree water can cause hypothermia almost as quick as colder water. I know it’s cold but keeping hydrated also helps out. Anyone wanting to pick up squirrel pecans can come out to my house; I’ll give you all you want.