Thanks to everyone who responded to my earlier thread -- your help paid off!
Christina and I are slowly making our way through all the nearby state parks -- she's sightseeing and I'm fishing.
This weekend we were in Daingerfield State Park in Eastern Texas. From a fishing perspective, the most interesting thing about this location is that it is or is nearly the westernmost location in the US to find chain pickerel, which are pretty much smaller northern pike (same genus). Down here, it's usually a winter fishery centering around their spawn in February. During the heat of the summer they have to stay deep. Still, I hoped I could coax one into coming up for me.
I did manage to get one -- throwing a white/chart clouser (is there anything that won't eat this fly?) along some weed beds near shore. It's a smaller model, but decent for this body of water. I was very happy to have polished off my main goal for the trip by the end of the first day!
Fan casting the same fly from shore found me a school of 6-9" black crappie.
These guys were initially very eager, but after the 10th fish or so they got a little timid, and what had been big hits became very subtle. I switched to a slightly slower and more delicate presentation -- I suspended a white balanced leech
below a strike indica ... ok its a bobber. This fly, which is used a lot at Pyramid Lake (Nevada), is basically a wooly bugger, but tied such that it rests horizontally instead of vertically (like a baitfish would) when suspended. The same concept as the Near Deere which is popular here. Then, the wave action imparts just a little action to the fly. And the bobber helps with subtle hits. Or that's the theory anyways. Either way, it worked, and I got another twenty or so fish out of the same 5 square yards of water over the next hour or so. Only one topped 10" (the legal size here) so they were all C&R.
Today we went canoeing around the lake, and I didn't catch anything, but went back and hit the same spot for another 10 crappie afterwards.
Anyways, that's all. We've got another couple trips planned hopefully before it gets cold, so you guys might hear from me again soon.
Obligatory action shot. The pickerel hit just off camera to the left.