Not many of you will recognize me. I havent been on the forum long, nor have I been on trips with any of you. I havent had the time to get out to the more popular spots, so we havent run into each other on the water.
I figured you guys might be interested in my story though.
My son and I decided we'd give fishing a try. It got us out of doing chores my wife had planned for us, and allowed us some 1 on 1 time to bond.
We started out in one of the ponds near our neighborhood equipped with some nightcrawlers and a "Cars" kiddie rod.
We had more luck catching pesky turtles than fish, so I turned to GoogleMaps to help find other spots to try.
I found a small drainage creek that was wide, held at least a few inches of water (even in in the dead heat of summer) and had a tree that provided shade in the late afternoons.
We had a lot of luck there! Bluegil, Tilapia, Texas Cichlids. As soon as the worm hit the water, there was a frenzy of fish trying to get it.
The experiences we had at our spot led me to my first post on this forum. I needed to know how to keep the micro-bluegil off the hook so we could find larger ones.
Also, reeling some of the larger Cichlids and tilapia up to us from the height we were fishing from seemed to wear out my son's rod. I needed advice.
As my son and I started enjoying fishing more and more, we discovered some friends of ours also fished locally. There's another group of ponds near us that reportedly had bass!
We bought new rods, and moved out.
When we werent catching, my son found other ways to entertain himself, haha.
Eventually we caught our first bass.
Talk about a confidence booster! It was exponentially larger than any of the bluegil or other fish we had caught to date (as expected)
Day in and day out, we fished these two ponds. Eventually my son caught his first, and held his first bass too.
We racked up some "personal bests" and kept on fishing. ***Sorry for all the conventional tackle talk***
We spent as much time in the tackle aisle at Wal Mart and fishing sections at Academy as we did on the lake. We were constantly hunting for the right lures for our spot.
After enough GoogleMaps searching, I found a potential honey hole. I had driven past the creek enough times that I knew my son and I would have to explore.
I found the spot was full of long nose gar!
I began scouring the web for what tackle to use. Everything said to use fabric lures. None of these tactics interested me, as they seemed like too much work having to unthread the lure out of the gar's teeth.
One afternoon, my son and I decided to explore a little bit more.
We "hiked" along the creek, and found a jackpot.
The creek runs across a bit of rubble (likely left over from highway construction) and opens into a large pool. Estimated at about 6-8 foot deep, 20 foot wide, and at least 40 foot long.
The current flows fastest along the banks, and eddies in the middle.
We had IMMEDIATE success fishing here.
Similar to the previously described creek, as soon as the worm and bobber landed, there were bites.
Parallel to this story is the one about my interest in fly fishing (Finally, I know. Enough about bobbers, lures, and reels!)
I watched a video on YouTube about catching large bass at golf courses. There is a golf course nearby, so I sent the course superintendent an email asking permission to fish the course during off hours. I promised to CPR, leave no trace of my visit, and to be respectful at all times.
He said he couldnt officially give me permission, but said he wouldnt run me off. (Score!)
I threw every lure you can think of in the ponds on the course. Crank baits, buzzbaits, texas rigged worms/lizards/creatures. I threw frogs, Pop-r's, spinbaits, and jerk baits.
I had ZERO bites. Not a big deal, right? Probably no fish in the ponds.
Nothing in my short fishing career has caused more heartburn than these ponds.
Cast my Pop-r to the far side of the pond, and begin retrieving... only to see a bass try to catch a low-flying dragonfly 3-4 foot from my lure.
This happened dozens of times.
Fish jumping clean out of the water... sometimes landing 3-4 foot away from the launch zone.
Fish smashing top water just feet from the bank where I am standing.
It drives me crazy to this day thinking about those ponds.
Anyways, back to my story. I figured I'd need to throw a lure that looked like a dragonfly if I had any chance of catching one of these fish.
Being the early-30 millennial that I am, I took to the internet.
Fly fishing. That would do it.
I bought a highly rated, yet ridiculously affordable fly fishing package on Amazon. I stopped by the Orvis Woodlands store on my way to class, and grabbed a Gibson's Dragon Fly.
To quickly wrap up this chapter of the story, I have yet to catch a fish at these ponds. But these ponds are what started my addiction to fly fishing, so I dont hate them too much.
Back to my honey hole.
My son and I would visit our creek every chance I could get him to agree to it.
I found that as long as he hooked a bass, he would be willing to stay till sundown. (The bluegil no longer interested him, Ha!)
During veteran's day, I received an incredible gift from another fly fisher, of a full box of flies intended for bass and panfish. At some point, I returned my Amazon special, and bought a TFO NXT 4/5wt.
Talk about night and day!
The TFO set up has secured my future in fly fishing for life. I love it.
Long story short, thanks to you guys here on TFF, an incredible gift, and some awesome internet searching, I am now a fly fishing die hard (I sold/gave away all my *un*conventional tackle that isnt used by my son)
I am addicted. I will fish any body of water. 3 foot wide drainage ditch behind your neighborhood? I've probably stopped and thrown a bugger. Size dont matter. The tug is the drug, and I am satisfied with any size and species.I love it.