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Jan 23rd, 2013
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Daingerfield Pickerel #10511830 01/02/15 10:16 PM
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2FlyFish4 Offline OP
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Chain Pickerel are the only Esox sub species found in Texas. The fish can be found naturally in the Cypress River drainage of Texas and popular lakes including Pat Mayse, Caddo, Lake O the Pines and Dangerfield. During the Texas winter, when very few warmwater species are in shallow water, the chain pickerel can be found cruising the quiet backwaters.

The largest chain pickerel on record was caught in Homerville, Georgia in 1961. It was 29.5 inches long, with a weight of 9 pounds 6 ounces. Although the national record is over nine pounds, the Texas state record is 4.75 pounds (23.75 inches). Like its close relatives, northern pike and muskellunge, the chain pickerel is equipped with a large mouth, well adapted for piscivory. The lower jaw, which extends further forward than the upper jaw, is equipped with four sensory pores on the underside. The dorsal and anal fins are set well back on the body. There is a distinctive pattern of interlocking dark bands on the back and sides that is reminiscent of a chain-link fence. During their first year they may reach 12-14 inches in length. Growth slows somewhat during the second year when they may attain lengths of 1.5 feet. In Texas they typically reach sizes of 3-4 pounds and about 2 feet in length.

Leaving Dallas at 6am for the 2 hour drive to Daingerfield State Park I was greeted with air temps in the mid 30s and light rain. It felt more like a morning to be heading out to hunt ducks instead of fishing. The predicted high for the day wasn't much more than the current temperature. I was a little hesitant about how the fishing would be, I was afraid the cold rain/weather may have dropped the water temps to fast and the fish would have lock jaw.

Lake Daingerfield is relatively small and is perfect for kayaks and small watercraft's. The park has a 5mph speed limit if you do decide to put a gas powered boat in the lake. The state recently put $5 million into this park renovating cabins, swim beach and nature trails. There is a $4 per person entry fee to enter the park and the cabin rates and availability can be found on the Daingerfield State Park website.

Once arriving at the parks' boat ramp; getting the kayak unloaded and getting my rods rigged up I was ready to hit the water. The lake is surrounded by 50-60' tall pine trees making this lake beautiful. With light winds out of the North-North/East I made a short paddle to a protective cove full of lily pads. Chain pickerel and weeds go together. Masters of the art of ambush, pickerel lie in or just above aquatic vegetation such as milfoil, cabbage, and lily pads, often facing outward toward open water, watching for unsuspecting prey. I started tossing a deer head zonker fly around the floating lily pads and submerged vegetation. It wasn't long before a fish quickly swirled and engulfed the fly. As you can see from the picture below there is flash hanging out of the gills along with fur and hair all wrapped up around the fishes jaws.


Continue Reading Here




Re: Daingerfield Pickerel [Re: 2FlyFish4] #10511858 01/02/15 10:24 PM
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KQT Offline
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Thanks, great read and photos


Common carp 23lb
Goldfish 9.78lb
Mirror Koi 14lb
Blue Cat 30lb
Bass 9.5lb
Re: Daingerfield Pickerel [Re: 2FlyFish4] #10511904 01/02/15 10:44 PM
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CanadiYak Offline
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very cool nice read


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Tight-Lines Mike aka "Playing Hooky"
Re: Daingerfield Pickerel [Re: 2FlyFish4] #10512487 01/03/15 03:01 AM
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ArchFisher Offline
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Nice. I'm camped at Daingerfield and saw you out there this morning. I got out in the afternoon and caught my first CP. I didn't think about bringing my fly rod, looked like fun. Hopefully the rain will stop tomorrow and will be able to get back out.

Re: Daingerfield Pickerel [Re: 2FlyFish4] #10512574 01/03/15 03:34 AM
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DataHawk Offline
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Good read, didn't know we had those in Texas


My personal best is still swimming out there just getting bigger. One of these days I will quit feeding it.
Re: Daingerfield Pickerel [Re: ArchFisher] #10512632 01/03/15 03:57 AM
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2FlyFish4 Offline OP
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Originally Posted By: ArchFisher
Nice. I'm camped at Daingerfield and saw you out there this morning. I got out in the afternoon and caught my first CP. I didn't think about bringing my fly rod, looked like fun. Hopefully the rain will stop tomorrow and will be able to get back out.


small world huh, lol



Re: Daingerfield Pickerel [Re: 2FlyFish4] #10512990 01/03/15 12:32 PM
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Bass Art Offline
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Nice read. I've never been to Daingerfield, but I've caught pickerel in Big Cypress Bayou near Karnack. There are good populations of them in lake Tyler and in Lake Hawkins. Makes me want to head to Hawkins and try them out today.


Artie
________________________________
Dad took me fishing when I was 10, and I've been pretty much hooked since. He went to be with God on August 14, 2012. I miss you, Dad.
Re: Daingerfield Pickerel [Re: 2FlyFish4] #10513168 01/03/15 03:08 PM
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JRNissley Offline
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Nice read! I need to read some dissertations today, but now I'm thinking about a trip back to DSP. I love that state park!


Nissley's recommendation for a natural high: kayak fishing

Re: Daingerfield Pickerel [Re: 2FlyFish4] #10513305 01/03/15 04:10 PM
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RogerB Offline
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Good read! Great looking fish - good report and tips. thumb

Re: Daingerfield Pickerel [Re: 2FlyFish4] #10514642 01/04/15 03:54 AM
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gutcheck Offline
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Nice write up... I've caught them at Hawkins a few times that's probably the closest you'll find them from DFW.


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