FLT Flash Fishing Report!
Not your Daddy's fishing report...
November 19, 2017: The big fish parade continues around here.. But it ain't me that is catching them.. Which ain't unusual..
Mark Pena caught this giant on Friday, and it went 12-4.. Mark ain't no stranger to big fish.. Seems like every year he whacks a DD plus..
Gary Dodak caught this 10-1 on Tuesday I think..
On Friday another eleven was caught but I have not received a certain e-mail I was promised just yet.. But I seen the pic..
And I have heard of a lot of other really nice fish caught over the last few days as well.
I took a buddy out yesterday ahead of the front, and we had a fun day and caught about 18-20 fish before 1:00 fishing the Benavides to the Salanaias. Our best fish was a 4.5 on a Plum Ol Monster. Caught a lot of fish on the POM..We even ran into a small school of schoolies in the Salanaias and caught and missed a bunch of those little bastards..
In any case, fishing has been pretty decent with mixed reports. But the best I can tell you is to Go South my son!
I am headed to the ranch this PM and will be in the deer blind for a few days and will celebrate Thanksgiving with the family.. Should be a tho' down..
I hope you get to spend some time with family and friends as well in the coming week, and we'd like to wish you and yours the best during the Holiday season.
And a big Thank You! for your business throughout the year..
And don't forget to thank God and everybody else that you are living in the best country that ever was conceived on this green earth.
Be careful out there on the roads and I'll see you back here on Friday morning.
Happy Thanksgiving! Now back away from that dressing!!
November 15, 2017: All is well in Zapata as we speed thru the month of November.. Remember a few weeks back when I said we'd be plucking a turkey before we knew it..
Well it is time to get the water hot..
Of course we are way past the barbarity of actually picking a turkey ourselves.. The Butterballs are hard to beat..
Especially with those little thingys that pop out when you know they are ready..
Wish they'd invent one of them for a woman.. Just so us neanderthals would know..
I mean, after all.. A man has one..
Fishing continues to be good.. Especially on the south end of the lake. Much to my chagrin..
I have been spending some time in the creeks above Zapata, and in the Salado.. But my results have been less than spectacular. But when it happens.. I want in early..
I have River Rat stenciled on my ass..
I have had a decent outing or two up here, but if I had a day to fish and the wind was not kicking up, I would still be fishing in the Salanaias.
And nobody is more tired of hearing that than me.. Hell, I'm tired of typing it..
If anything has changed, it is the variety of baits that have been used to catch fish.. A couple of weeks ago I would have said that you needed to throw a spinnerbait or a lizard to catch fish. In fact, I did..
But these days, a Texas rigged worm is as good as any. I am partial to the Plum Ol Monster.. But the Plum Apple or Junebug has been good as well. Put it on a 5/16 tungsten and get to fishin'.
Of course I have been told that a Super Fluke in Watermelon something is working good. And a Baby Brush Hog there ain't nothing wrong with either.
Fact is that your favorite will probably catch em if you're around em.. And sometimes size does matter..
And smaller is a size..
Now don't get me wrong.. A spinnerbait and a lizard will still catch them..
Some folks are throwing a spinnerbait pretty much exclusively.
I talked to a couple of guys over the weekend that said they used six packs of Ol Monsters in one day..
That's my kind of fishing..
Creek channel edges are still the shit.. If you position your boat in casting distance from brush while you are sitting in the creek, odds are you are going to be bringing your bait thru the area and depth where the fish are hanging out.This is working well in a lot of the creeks on the south end of the lake.. And it is starting to up north in some of these creeks.
And after a bit you can fine tune the depth that the fishies are wanting to be that day. Usually it corresponds to the depth where the baitfish are hanging out..
In a nutshell, that's the pattern most productive right now..
This fish was caught by Rick Vannett this week.. It went 9-3. And there have more like it..
In other news..
Big schools of crappie have collided with several fishermen while throwing a small spinnerbait. And some of them have been magnums.
I have heard that Government cove and the Salanaias have both had a bunch of crappie in them. And you'll probably run into them by accident..
One crappie don't mean much.. But if you catch two in a row.. They's probably a party goin' on in that spot.. If you are interested. Hard to beat when subjected to hot grease..
The crappie under the Veleno bridge have slowed way down. But you can still catch a mess if you put in some time.. Eggs in many that have met the knife are very mature and it is my guess that a lot of these fish have headed to the shallower bushes in preparation for spawning..
We have a bit of an Indian Summer going on around here.. These Falcon fish of all species do it when they take the notion..
I went out yesterday afternoon with the guys from PAW to do our fall shocking survey. And they are still at it today.
We shocked from Bob's Knob north yesterday, making about eight stops before it got late. Many places we stopped did not produce much. Two places produces bass in some numbers. Two places produced no bass..
Biggest thing we brought up was one a bit over five pounds, here in the Veleno. We did find one spot that I am going to have to explore farther.. I will report..
But in years past, in places where we have shocked up good numbers, I have had very little luck catching fish.. So it has had little impact on my fishing.. But it has always intrigued me as to why I can't catch em where we found em..
Could be that it was because they had lightning bolts shooting out of their ass a few days earlier.
And being the genius I am, whenever we pull up to a spot, I always render a prediction as to whether we will see a lot of fish. And shit I think looks fishy as hell rarely produces much of consequence. And sometimes do-nothin lookin' water is loaded with fish..
Hell if I know.. Just reinforces the fact that I don't know shit about fishing..
We did see lot of shad.. Gizzard and Threadfin. Some tiny.. Some whoppers.. And lots of good eatin' sized.. For the bass..
We have cover galore, and all I can say is that currently we have a lot of hiding places for the bass. And everything else.
The lake is holding pretty steady and we have actually caught an inch or so in the last week. We are sitting at 283.13.
Water temperature is about 71° all over the lake.
It's all good! Come and see us!
November 7, 2017: I have been going to write a fishing report for the last couple of days.. But frankly I have been kind of disheartened and downright pissed off.
No, not about the fishing.. But about the shooting at the church in Sutherland Springs.. And I am sure that many of you are feeling the same way, and I know that some of you live in and near the area where this happened.
And honestly I have no words to describe the way I feel.
We have a lot of customers that come from the area and all I can say is that we cry with you.
Our hearts and prayers go out to the community and the families that have been affected by this senseless atrocity. And all Texans. And all Americans. This shit has got to stop.
There is no easy or quick solution to this problem. And I certainly don't have any cures that come to mind.
There is no way that anyone in their right mind could ever do such a thing. And that's the problem we have. Mental illness.
Although some may speak to gun control as as a cure all for these events, we all know that someone with intent can do great damage with any number of devices. As we have seen all too often as of late.
The problem is not the method.. It is the individual.
I grew up in a small town where everybody knows everybody. And I can certainly imagine what the community is feeling. But imagining what you are going through and experiencing it are two different things.
And I am sorry to say that about all I can do is pray for you and your community.
And rest assured that I, and millions of other Americans are doing the same.
The fishing on Falcon is steadily improving, and the decent to excellent fishing is moving up the lake. A couple weeks ago I would have told you that The Salanaias was the only sure bet on the lake. And it certainly has been getting its share of attention.. And rightly so.. It is still cranking out the numbers and a bunch of quality fish.
But in the last couple of weeks the midlake has started to produce a lot more fish, and for some folks that have figured them out, the numbers have been excellent..
And another note about the Salanaias.. There has certainly been a lot of boat traffic in there as of late. But there has been some questionable boat traffic reported in there as well.. So pay attention to your surroundings. If you feel uncomfortable in an area, move on..
I have personally been in there a lot, and have seen nothing of note. But that don't mean that the import business has stopped.. So just be aware when you are in there.. I told you I'd tell you what I know.. And I really don't know anything, but a couple of boats reported suspicious activity, but had no contact with anyone..
The pattern, if there is one, is that fish are on drops and brush lines with drops. The retama is the most prevalent green stuff in the water, and it is the thorniest, nastiest, grab everything bush/tree ever.
But the fish are sure hanging around it.
Hardwoods, big and small, also have had a lot of fish on and in them.
It ain't rocket science folks.. Just get close to a creek channel and fish the cover.. Keep your boat in eight to twelve feet of water and knock the bugs off the trees.. And there are a lot of bugs in the trees..
A few weeks ago the spinnerbait was the go to shit, but these days it seems that a soft plastic is working as good or better.. And we have sold every kind of bait as of late.. Long as it is watermelon something..
The green with some chartreuse on the tip is a great choice.. Although yesterday we whacked em pretty good on the Plum Ol Monster.. Go figure..
I have heard of hard baits working and even buzzbaits.. Funny as it sounds, a lot of these fish have been chasing dragonflies, and where that is happening you can catch some fish on a topwater.. For what it is worth..
There is a lot of dragonfly sex going on out there.. What a way to go..
Here's a few pics from the last week.. There have been a lot of nice fish caught..
Ed Knoll caught this 9.06 in the Tigers.
Frank Deviney caught this one last Saturday..
Blake Martinez caught his personal best last week.. 8-13..
Paula Nelson caught this 5.11 PB as well.. Ladies always get a break around here..
And our buddy Carter Williams caught this 9-6 over the weekend as well.. Along with a couple of other fives and sixes..
And John Buffalo caught this 10-3 on a spinnerbait a few days back..
Lots of good fish have been caught of late.. I've seen a couple but my landing the fish skills are apparently degraded..
I do believe the top of the lake is starting to show sign of awakening. But it is not exactly what I would call good as of yet.. As a matter of fact, I'd place the paddles between the the Salado and the Hedieona and yell clear!
I spent an two hours in the Salado on Monday and never took the bat off my shoulder.. Did a little better up on this end yesterday.. But it don't compare to Pierces/Coyotes south..
Deer season is now open, and I am having my annual month of confliction.. The fishing is good.. But I want to sit in the blind.. I ain't killed a deer in a year... But hell I cain't eat the shit anyway.. Instant gout connection.. And I ain't interested..
But I wouldn't mind putting some horns on the wall.. My kids love deer meat.. Decisions, decisions..
Tommy's kids put the smackdown on a cull buck last Saturday.. And this is what it looks like now..
Well actually it is a lot smokier than that now and is drying as we speak..
Samples at FLT forthcoming..
Yall better get down here and get you some of these fish.. It's been good.. It's not 'quit your job' good yet.. But it's coming..
And Oh Yeah! How Bout Them Astros! Congrats to the team and all you life long waiting for a championship fans!
See yall soon.. But a cool front is on the way.. Fishing will suck for a couple of days with the wind.. Think I'll head for the ranch..
This weekend should be good.. I'll be back and I'll see you then..
October 31, 2017: The end of the month has rolled around.. Again.. The older I get the faster it happens.. Or so it seems.. And the older I get, the crankier I get.. And less likely to tolerate a bunch of bullshit..
But hey.. I'm a friendly guy...
Of course today is halloween, and as freaky and fucked up as today's society is, there are probably more folks excited about today than there are about Easter.. It is truly a scary world out there. Just look around you..
If you walk thru a mall (I'm pulling this out of thin air.. I ain't been in one in twenty years..) you'd think every day was halloween.. The way people dress and their particular affliction for body art.. I don't get it man..
And I am not too sure about your chances for employment if you have a fender from a 55 Chevy stuck through your eyebrow and a tattoo across your neck that says, "Hit it and pass it to the right.."
Or you could have the big red lips tattoo on you neck so everyone knows you are a playah...
Let me translate what those tattoos mean for you..
"I will work the rest of my life for minimum wage..."
I know you just need to be you man.. But there needs to be a balance between the cost of tattoos and deodorant..
Like I said, it is a freak show out there.. And the only thing that sucks more than Dracula is the fishing up the river..
You remember fishing right?
The creeks off the river no longer look like witches brew, and actually they look great.. You can see into the water at least a foot in most of them, and in some places even more.. I'm not saying you could see a coffin billed crankbait four feet down.. But it is looking good..
I went into the first creek above Beacon yesterday morning, what is actually old Zapata, and spinnerbaited about a mile of shoreline and creek channel edges that look exactly like the water on the south end of the lake, and caught nothing..
Not even an eye of newt, or toe of frog..
So after an hour of that, I picked up a buddy at Beacon and we headed up the river.. To the Chapote creek on the Mexican side..
And the water in there looks awesome.. First pitch into a hardwood and Bam! I caught a three pounder..
The dreaded first cast jinx.. We fished another hour in there and only caught one more dink, and I had a tail tugger.. And we fished all the awesome rock bluffs and hardwoods that line them.. It just looks too good not to have a fish on every one.. But it don't.. At least not biting fish..
We headed to Texas Chapote and fished the rock ledge at the mouth on the south side.. Looks awesome.. But the fish don't think so.. The shad were thicker than maggots on a corpse.. But it didn't matter..
So we headed to my favorite creek on the planet.. Hedieona.. And fished two of my favorite points/ledges without a bite.. The fish certainly were not gobblin...
But the ghosts of trips past certainly were present, cause every time I throw a Mag Fluke on that one ledge in there, I get the feeling that something big could happen.. But it didn't..
And about that time I was out of silver bullets, so we headed for the trailer.. Although the fishing was poor, we enjoyed the morning and we were still in good spirits.. But we drove a stake thru the heart of the trip and called it a day..
Glad that is over with..
Now the south end of the lake is a different story.. And it is not a horror story..
The Salanaias is the best thing going from all reports.. We caught a lot of fish down there last week as well, and there have been some good quality and lots of numbers being caught. Six and seven pound fish have been pretty common, with an occasional whopper being landed.
A chartreuse and white spinnerbait in 3/4 ounce is about as good as it gets.. I had a split tail chartreuse trailer on mine and they ate the shit out of it.. But like usual our biggest fish was a three and a half..
I must have the bigger fish spooked..
And it ain't just me catching fish down south.. Lots of folks are..
Lizards and Mag Flukes are also catching some fish, and that damn white swim jig with a swimming tail on it has caught a lot of fish as well.
Some of these fish will knock the rod out of your hand..
The Tigers is also putting out some fish, as is Government cove and State Park..
I recommend that you launch down at the State Park, and fish that end.. Stop by the store and we'll talk specifics..
The crappie are still good on anything concrete..
Catfish are just stupid..
And white bass may show up anywhere at any time..
Deer season starts this weekend.. And I'm gonna have to be here at work.. I'd rather wait till it cools off a bit anyway.. But I am sure Tommy's son and/or son in law will dirt nap something on Saturday morning, and by Sunday evening there will be some meat hanging in the smokehouse..
Don't know why I am so excited.. I can just imagine some backstrap or a ring of sausage and my gout flares up.. Guess I will just be hunting horns..
They say you can make a soup out of those horns and it will bolster your boner.. Everything else from a deer makes me swell up.. Shit it probably does work..
I was at the ranch last weekend and the deer are thicker than fleas.. And we seem to be shooting less than we ever have..
With the grandkids coming of age, we built a new family deer blind this year.. I hope the county appraiser don't see it on the satellite.. Forgot to camo the roof..
It's not as big as some I have seen, but it does have split bedrooms and a bath downstairs..
I also checked out a few of my rifles on the bench..
I bought a 204 Ruger last year.. And I know a bunch of you think this thing is a squirrel gun.. But it is the best shooting son of a bitch I have had in years.. And I am gonna do some lasic on a couple of spikes I have seen on camera..
Last year I got invited on a doe kill em all hunt on a MLD north of Amistad.. And we salted the roads and were taking care of business.. And we had a little plumbing issue and we had to go to the top of a mountain and shut the water off from a cistern that fed the ranch from up there.
And while we were there, my host and I looked down from our lofty perch and saw a nanny way the fuck off eating on a road we had fed earlier..
And the only rifle we had with us was that 204.. I asked him how far away that deer was.. And he said, "I don't know.. But it's a poke.."
So I figured, what the shit... I held over her about a half body freehanded and turned one loose..
And after the flight time, she dropped in her tracks..
He looked at me and said, "I'm going to be hearing about this shit for the rest of my life, ain't I?"
And so far, he has.. Later ranged at 364 yards..
That was a 40 grain Hornaday right thru the heart..
Enough braggin'.. But Like I have said.. I have always been lucky..
And you can get lucky too.. Get your ass down here and get you some..
And let's hope the Astros get them some tonight!
October 23, 2017: It was a fairly busy weekend around here compared to late.. And it is good to see folks back out on the water.
I went by the county ramp yesterday morning about ten, and there were thirty rigs in the parking lot. Certainly more than I have seen in quite some time.
Over the weekend, Texas Classic Bass Club was in town, and they had some of the best results I have seen in quite some time. They fished a two man team format, and the leaders on Saturday had over thirty six pounds!
Second place after day one was twenty four and change. I have not received a final report as of yet.. And if you fished the tourney and have that info please pass it along..
After all.. Inquiring minds want to know.
There were several other thirty plus stringers caught over the weekend as well.
Where and what I guess you'll be wanting to know.. And from what I heard, the best stringers came out of the Salanaias.. On swimbaits and spinnerbaits.
Several of our local guides caught them good on the blades over the weekend as well..
In any case, the south end of the lake is still fishing head and shoulders better than the north end. And the water looks awesome down that way. When you look across the lake it kinda looks selsun blue..
You don't have to be too suave to catch the fish either.. The fishing down there has been pretty prell... I mean swell..
And if you hook a big one you might get some swelling in your johnson and johnson..
Don't forget your line conditioner..
White and chartreuse, and white are still the best choices for the spinnerbaits. A swimbait like the Skinny Dipper or the Rage Tail Swimmer that is light or white in color are good choices as well.
I have heard of folks using weighted hooks, a swimming jig, or pegging a small worm weight against the nose of those swim baits.. Any or all of them will work..
Were we prepared for this swimbait mania on Falcon here at FLT?
Uh.. Not really.. But we are about there now.. There has been some innovating going on around here..
Necessity is the mother of invention..
But mostly it is just a mother..
I am so wanting the top of the lake to turn on.. But it ain't there from 95% of all reports.. I did talk to someone that caught four fish in the Hedieona the other day..
And then again a guide buddy of mine spent three hours in the Salado yesterday and did not catch a fish..
I know all them bastards did not swim to the dam.. We were still catching fish in the Salado before the rise.. And some days we were whacking them in the woods across from the Veleno.. Where all these fuckers went I do not know..
But they are going to show up somewhere soon I do know.. And when I find them I will let you know.. But it ain't happened yet..
The crappie are still doing pretty good under the bridge.. It is not lights out.. But if you get out there early and work at it, you can usually catch a limit in a couple of hours or so..
I went and caught a bakers dozen to cook at lunch on Friday. Hard to beat once you get em shucked and fried..
All of the females are building eggs, and one fish I cleaned had a mature set of eggs in her.. So like the bass, I guess these fish will go and do the deed when they take a notion..
Conditions are good, and I look forward to seeing a monster crappie hatch this spring. With great survival..
Don't forget, there is going to be a Alligator Gar tourney this Saturday held down at the state park.. You must fish from a boat, and any legal means of capture will be allowed.. Call Joe Cortez for details at 956-739-5751.
Hopefully Saturday will be a good day to stick a few..
The lake is holding pretty steady, and we are coming up just a scosch every couple of days. We are at 282.62, which equivilates to 18.58 feet low..
Well not watching the NFL on TV has become pretty easy for me.. Especially when the wind ain't blowing..
But that wadn't the case yesterday.. It wasn't howling, but it was predicted to.. Maybe.. So I chickened out and stayed in bed till 8:30.. And that felt pretty damn good..
But dealing with the boredom yesterday gave me a fit, so I turned on the TV to see what other crap was on..
I had the choice of Desperate Housewives.. The Cardashians.. The Dead.. The Walking Dead.. Fear The Walking Dead.. Return Of The Walking Dead.. Zombies.. Return of the Zombies.. And The Dead Zombies Return..
Who watches this shit? I hope the San Andreas Fault swallows up Hollywierd.. And soon..
Anyway I settled on Boxing.. And I really couldn't watch it.. But it did remind me of my one time inside the squared circle.. And the memories are all bad..
I was pitted against a fellow in a charity event..
His name was Gasieus Clay..
Every time I hit him in the belly he would fart like a yard dog..
They had to use the smelling salts on the referee..
Boxing was not the only thing coming out of this guys boxers..
In any case, after the first two rounds, the front two rows of fans had gone to the concession stand.. And the fight was called because there were only two rows of fans.. And they couldn't stand the smell..
The stench was horrible..
And smell is one of the most powerful memory triggers..
And years later, when I was working construction, every time I walked by the Porta-Pottie I just kinda automatically broke out into the Rope-a-Dope..
Well this report has gone to hell in a hand basket, so I reckon I'll put a period or two on the end and turn this thing off.
I think I have gotten my daily digital lobotomy..
Think I'll go catch me some more crappie.. It's late in the day and if I leave real quiet..
See you under the bridge..
Wait.. That didn't sound right...
October 20, 2017: We have had about the most pleasant week of weather around here that anyone could imagine. Highs in the mid eighties and cool mornings around sixty with low humidity.
The perfect fishing weather.. Someone needs to tell the fish..
I'm not saying that the fishing sucks.. But it is not lights out either.
There have been a few folks that have caught big numbers of little fish, and some caught little numbers of big fish. But someone always does.
Jay from High Stakes Bassin went with me to the south end of the lake on Wednesday, and we had a fish plan in place.
And we followed it for a few hours. He had caught some fish down south the day before, so naturally we did not go where he had caught fish.. We're kinda ignorant that way..
But we was lookin for new fish.. And we found some.. But not a lot of em and no big fish. Jay had something on that was bigger on a swimbait.. But we did not get to see it..
Most of our fish came on a chartreuse square bill and a white spinnerbait. Spinnerbait in and near the flooded retamas, and the squarebill worked better anywhere you could get close to the bank..
One time I caught fish on back to back casts, but it was pretty much a hunt and chunk trip. We caught a dozen or so by lunch time..
It is now Friday at three o'clock, and we have talked to a lot of folks that have fished today. And some of them have caught the heck out of em.. With several eights reported. Including some flipping fish.
Which I can't seem to find..
Texas Classic Bass Club is the only club in town this weekend, and several of them say they got em figured out. We'll see tomorrow..
They are still buying swimbait's and spinnerbaits for the most part..
One thing that is agreed.. The south end of the lake is by far better than the top.. As it has been all week.. Or month..
The lake is still creeping up.. We are sitting at 282.42.. Up a couple of inches this week..
The catfish and crappie are still going great guns..
The water on top of the lake is clearing nicely, and it can't be too long before the fish figure it out..
And hopefully I'll figure it out shortly thereafter..
It's all good, and you need to get down here and see all this water..
And hopefully I'll see you on it!
October 16, 2017: Another cool front blew through Zapata yesterday evening, bringing blustery winds, cooler temperatures, and some rain showers from Laredo all the way down to Starr county, and gave us an honest half inch of rain here in Zapata.
And the temps are fabulous here this morning.. Although the breeze we still have is keeping most folks off the lake.. It is supposed to be short lived with light SE winds returning tomorrow and Wednesday.
Seems here lately I have been talking about the weather and rain a lot more than fishing..
But rising water is always big news around here.. And it is not news that has been very common the last couple of years.
But man the lake looks fantastic.
Fishing on the top of the lake and up the river and the Salado has still been disappointing. The fish have just not taken to the new water in the backs of the creeks just yet. But I know they are fixin' to.
I haven't seen this scenario quite as many times as I have seen Tombstone, but I have seen it many times in the past. And I know what is going to happen.
The south end of the lake is a whole nother story as they say.
From the Tigers south, good numbers of fish have been reported, and some folks have caught a shitload of fish. And what on, you might ask.
A kind of different phenomena has been taking place, and it started about the time that the TABC tourney was in town. About the same time the water to to rising.
Of course a lot of those folks fish a bit differently than a lot of us here do, and sometimes showing them something different makes all the difference.
We are not known as a swimbait or swim jig lake, but you need to be throwing one right now.
White is the dominant color, but a sexy shad or shiner color will work as well.
A hairy swim jig with a paddle-tail trailer like the Skinny Dipper or a Zoom Swimming Fluke has been really good.
Throw this thing in fairly shallow flats surrounded by flooded Retama and weeds, and reel it slow like a slow rolled spinnerbait.
And speaking of spinnerbaits, yes Martha you can still catch em on the blades as well.. But not as well..
A squarebill will also catch fish, and you can catch a few flipping. But I told you what the fish seem to prefer right now.
There are a lot of small fish in these schools, but catching a five or an eight happens all the time. You might have to weed through some smaller fish to catch one. But it does happen.
The pockets south of the Tigers on the Texas side have been producing fish, on the same pattern as discussed above. The Salanaias has also been very consistent as of late according to those I have spoken to.
I was in the Diablo on Saturday, and I fished if from where the brush starts way back there, to the very back, throwing a spinnerbait on the way in, and flipping a worm on the way out. I caught zip.
Although I have heard of some fish being caught in there.. They just are not in there in big numbers yet..
But it looks awesome..
Our water temps had not cooled off too much as of yet, but with these continuing fronts it won't be long.. And the shad will be headed back there before too long. And it is gonna be on..
Yesterday the water was still around eighty degrees here in the Veleno.. Where I was catching some crappie under the bridge.. Too fun.. Too easy..
The wind is supposed to lay down tomorrow, and on Wednesday I am going to head to the south end to see if I can catch these fish a lot of folks have told me about.
If you are a cat fisherman, you need to quit your job and get your ass down here. The fish have gone crazy and I have seen with my own eyes piles of whiskerfish caught over the last weekend.
Cut and live bait is catching fish and it has been just beyond description. A group of our hometown boys were here over the weekend and they flat ass put the smack down on em. They quit fishing a day early because they were tired of cleaning fish. Twenty and thirty pound fish were very common, and they had several pushing forty..
Another boatload of fellows put out some single hook jugs with cut bait during the day and never drove off from em before they started to get drug off..
It is stupid..
The gar are also very active and the rising water has them in the shallows chasing the monster schools of tilapia that seem to be in the back of every creek.. So if you are a bowfisherman, you should call in sick at the minimum..
What the hell else is going on..
Forest fires in California.. Earthquakes.. Floods.. Hurricanes..
And the US Soccer team did not qualify for the World Cup..
What is the world coming to.. Especially when the "football" world is so in need of a sport to watch. Being nobody is watching football.. At least "Football Americano.."
I am sure a lot of you are still tuning in.. But I ain't missed it a bit. Those brats can still kiss my ass.
I have always said that soccer would never catch on in the states, and I guess I am both wrong and right.. But it has received more notoriety than I ever imagined.
It is the epitome of hockey on grass.. Another sport a true southerner just can't wrap his mind around.
They should just go to the shootout from the get go and quit killing all that pretty grass.. Or better yet, forget the whole deal and run some Herefords on it.. Either way, you'll end up with a bunch of bullshit..
And the hockey guys.. All that ice, and no Jack Daniels poured over it.. Seems like a hell of a waste..
"It was a riveting game.. Errr.. Match.. A huge Euro crowd, of urine filled baggie chunking fans watched, riveted, as their Legnano Frogs and the Helsinki Roosters grappled to a nil-nil tie, after neither team could muster a goal..."
Sounds thrilling to me..
I'll take the Little League World Series for a thousand, Alex..
Besides.. We got the MLB Division Championships going on.. Go Astros!
I did see that the world championship cornhole competition was on ESPN the other day.. I did not watch it, but I had no idea that ESPN had started to show porn..
But what do you expect from a network that puts cheerleading on, and calls it a sport..
Anything you can do while swilling beer, is not a sport..
Among my other less than mainstream talents, I am a world class washer pitcher, and in the old days, the more beer I drank, the better I got..
Kinda like bowling..
You'll have to admit, that fishing has been a sport a lot longer than soccer or football..
You did not hear Jesus say to the Disciples, "Put away your soccer balls, and follow me.."
Hell no.. They were fishing..
And that's where I am going.. Wednesday..
Report to follow..
October 11, 2017: The first real cool front of the year blew through yesterday, and took highs from the nineties to the sixties..
I already hate this shit..
We had had a north wind last month, but it did not do much to the temperatures.. This one has.. We are supposed to be back in the seventies today.. And I can handle that.. But I know what is coming..
And it ain't a long term warming trend..
Yes, winter is on our doorstep..
We also got almost an inch of rain yesterday, as a lot of gulf moisture was headed north as the front was headed south. And a lot of the valley, and a lot of the valley that we water got good rains yesterday as well..
Awesome.. We should be holding on to this water for a decent amount of time..
Several locals have been venturing out into the river above Zapata, exploring legendary creeks that go by the name of Golondrina, Chapote, Oscars, White House, and of course the Rio Salado..
And of course there are pockets that remain nameless, too numerous to count, that snake their way to the river channel from arroyos that drain into the river above Zapata.
As of this morning, we are sitting at 281.39, which is hard to believe if you looked at the lake level about two weeks ago.. And it is hard not to smile..
That is 19.81 feet low.. The highest we have been since about the end of March back in 2016.. But it seems longer ago than that..
Fishing is decent on the south end of the lake, and I hear that the Salanaias is putting out good numbers of fish.. Pockets on the Texas side south of the Tigers have also been good..
Look for some wind on the rocky, brushy shores. Baitfish abound and a small swimbait has been a good choice as of late. Lots of little fish but some good ones mixed in..
The dam is always producing some real quality fish, but it takes some man hours sometimes to catch one.
There has been a hatch of something in some of the Mexican creeks like Blanco, and the fry are thick.. I am not sure what they are, but they have been reported by a lot of folks.
We will be shocking the lake in early November, and I bet that we will see some baby bass.. It happens every year..
A lot of the creeks on the upper end of the lake have some rotting vegetation, and the fish don't seem to be liking it very much.. But catch rates have been improving in these creeks as the water clears and the funk goes away.
I believe that in a week or two we will be whacking them up here on the north end.
I knew it was going to happen.. And it already has.. The crappie have moved back under the Veleno bridge in a big way.. Time to come get you some.. I ain't been after em just yet, but this weekend I am gonna get me some..
If you are a bow fisherman, your time is now.. Tilapia, grass carp, and gar are in the shallows.. Lots of em..
The catfish have gone apeshit.. In the lake and in the river..
White bass are schooling all over the south end.. Look for the gulls..
It is a great time to be on Falcon, whatever you are looking for..
Deer season is only a couple of weeks away..
Man I got a lot of options.. Life is good..
Get your ass down here.. This shit don't happen every day..
October 6, 2017: The first full weekend in October is upon us, and I can almost hear the Trick or Treaters already..
This year has flown by, as have the last few.. And when you get my age, everything speeds up.. Although I am sure that there are still sixty ticks in each minute..
One thing that has slowed down, is the water rise, as we are about to max out on any thing that you would call real rising water.. Yesterday at 3:54 PM, we hit the 280.00 milestone..
I was not sure early on the we would get that high, but we have and are slowly rising still.. But very slowly..
We are sitting at 280.24 as of this morning.. So we are still crawling up.. Releases from Falcon and Amistad have been slowed to a crawl. We still have a bit of water in the river as the creeks drain back out to the river, and there is still just a bit of water coming down the Salado.
I imagine that unless something else weird happens or release rates change, we'll crawl up and over 281 early next week.
If you are a river rat here on Falcon, as I am, you are going to find that a lot of fishing opportunities are going to be awaiting you pretty soon.. The water is there now.. But I don't think you want to fish it just yet..
And if you head up the river, keep in mind the old bridge abutment in the river just below Hedieona.. That thing is probably still in the kill zone so be sure and avoid it..
If you don't know about it, and are planning on running up the river.. ASK!!
Coordinates for this monolith can be found on the Ramps and Hazards page.. See home page for link..
The talk around here is all water of course, and there are not a lot of people on the lake this week. Well yet..
Ingram and Uvalde Bass Clubs are both in town this weekend, and they will be on the water trying to find out where the fish are.. I'll report on their results..
I launched at the state park on Tuesday, and did more sight seeing that fishing.
The water right up against the dam was a bit off colored, but the water on the main lake and up to the Tigers is pristine..
I got delayed on my trip by a school of white bass around marker two.. There were a hundred seagulls beating the water into a froth, so I stopped and caught a few whites on square bills and a beetle spin.. The small fish were on top.. A buddy was nearby and he had a jigging spoon on and was catching some keepers right off the bottom.
The depth finder was lit up like a Christmas tree.. There are balls of bait as big as a house out there..
Anyway I made it up to Tigers and fished a hump and ridge I like with no takers. So naturally I moved to the trees.
And my luck was not much better but at least I did get a few bites. These trees were in bays and on mini points.. I tried the way, way back of a couple of good creeks, but did not get a bit back there..
But they look freakin awesome.. The fish will get there.. But they weren't there yet.. Or if they were, they would not eat my plum ol Monster..
So I'm kinda leaning towards the, "They are not there yet theory.."
We had some rain around this week, and we ended up with about two inches in the last five days.. Spotty showers, and a good downpour or two.. Zapata County is as green as you will see it in October..
Things are looking up..
The tilapia and gar have invaded the backs of a lot of creeks.. Anywhere you find clear water there are big tilapia to shoot.
We went out Monday and shot em up pretty good. And we couldn't hit shit.. I should have thrown the arrows by hand.. Lots of shots between hits..
I shot at a gar and got a three pound tilapia.. That's how my shooting went..
In my defense, I was shooting with a borrowed bow I was not too familiar with.. Somehow I dropped mine in the lake the last time I was out..
And no it did not float.. There's another five hunnert..
The catfish are going absolutely apeshit, and I weighed a new lake record blue on Wednesday night.. I have seen bigger ones, but they were not recorded.. This one was a sixty five pounder, and she was released alive after being documented. Josh Paul caught this one on a jug line, and he has a giant tub in his giant boat..
They also caught a 56, a 46, two over thirty, and a plethora of eatin size fish from five to fifteen pounds.. All the big fish were released..
The catfish have gone apeshit here with the running water.. Lots of folks have shown me pictures..
They also shot a few tilapia and a few gar while they were here.. This was after a daytime hunt on Tuesday..
And speaking of shooting gar, there is going to be a gar tournament held out of the state park, on October 28..
Registration will be the morning before the event. For more info and registration details, call Joe Cortez at 956-739-5751.
Lots of talk about everything but bass.. Get your ass down here and help me write a bass story..
See you on the water.. Whatever species you are chasing..
October 2, 2017: Well the town is back to normal (if there is such a thing) for now, with the mass exodus of bass boats that headed north and east yesterday afternoon and evening..
And I'd like to take this opportunity to thank all of the fishermen and women that came to Zapata to fish the TABC tourney over the weekend.
And thanks to all of you that came thru our store!
You guys were certainly a shot in the arm for the entire town. Thank You!
When all the fishing was done, Shelby County Bass Club came on strong on day two to take the crown.. For the third year in a row!
Those guys can catch some fish.. Congrats!
In second was Austin Bass Club, and in third was Universal City Bass Club.
All these guys did a great job of figuring out what was happening with the fish during the big water level increase during the last week. Some of the guys were here long enough to see the lake catch ten feet of water!
Here's a snap of the final results sheet. These numbers represent a possible thirty fish limit over two days.
Big fish of the tourney was caught on Sunday and it weighed in at 10.12 pounds. It was caught by Tim Champlan.
And there were a good number of fish over seven pounds caught during the event.. Seven or eight on Saturday.. Not sure what the total was for Sunday.
The lake is still on the rise, and as of this afternoon we are sitting at 277.51, or 23.69 low.
I believe we will get to 280 by the weekend, and I am still not sure what all is coming from the Salado..
But to be sure we will be gaining some water for the next week.. Unless something stupid happens..
So I am gonna go out on a limb and say that fishing is still pretty good, but you need to fish from Bob's Knob south for a little while..
But very shortly, it's gonna be on up here as well..
Fish were caught shallow and deep.. Both patterns were good over the weekend, and as you can imagine, with this many fishermen from so many different areas, they were caught on everything from Shakey heads to crankbaits..
It's all good. Come get you some..
October 1, 2017: Well hear's a quick update on water levels and the TABC tourney that is going on.
As far as water goes.. We are up to 275.26. And we are still rising at a decent pace.. Last night at 11:30 we were at 274.50, so we have come up nine inches in the last nine hours..
I do believe we will top out between 278 and 280. We'll see in a week or so..
As far as the fishing goes, it was pretty good considering the conditions.. And half the lake was pretty much un-fishable due to debris and mega muddy waters and the lake, being a lot bigger, fished smaller..
After day one, The Universal City Bass Club was in the lead with 54.03 pounds.
In Second was Shelby County Bass Club with 49.77.
In third was Austin Bass Club with 43.57.
And in fourth was Canyon Bass Club with 37.66.
These are fifteen fish totals.. So you can see the average fish weights are pretty darn good.
Final weigh in this afternoon at 2ish..
Lake is looking awesome and we are going to have some fun this fall..
September 29, 2017: As you can imagine the phone and e-mail and text messaging has been pretty heavy duty around here the last couple of days..
And it's all good! And the news is all good.. About the water anyway..
As of this morning, Falcon has risen just a bit over seven feet from earlier in the week. And of course we are all trying to guess where it is going to stop..
And I've got my theories.. But there are still a few variables to contend with.
The river has crested in Laredo overnight, but there is still a lot of water coming thru town. And in the river above Laredo.
And as I type, the water is back on the rise at Eagle Pass. Which will bring a rise back to all other places between us, but I doubt that it will be as high as what we have seen in Laredo and at Columbia Bridge..
There is no doubt that water is also coming in from the Salado, but it is hard to measure.
I have sent a scout boat out there to check on the current coming in from the Salado..
Well actually.. Them crazy bastards wanted to go look.. So I told em to report on what they saw.. If they don't get swept away..
The river is full of stumps, trees, cane mats, and all the trash that has been thrown into the creeks on both sides of the river from here to Del Rio..
And it will take a couple weeks for most of this stuff to settle out and find its way to the shore..
There are a few boats that have put in here in Zapata this am, and I even saw a bass boat east of the Veleno bridge.. Something not seen in a couple of years.. Some due to bridge construction.. Some due to low water..
But it was good to see..
The TABC directors have moved the weigh in for this weekends tournament to the state park, and I also believe that this is a great idea.. There is a mine field to navigate to get south from the county ramp.
I ain't saying it cain't be done.. And they are going to let fishermen trailer to the state park after a live well check here at county if they so desire..
There are some fish in the Veleno.. But it too has dirtied up..
Ok.. So the big question.. Just like Eve asked Adam.. How big is it going to get?
I believe that we could catch another five feet or so in the next couple of days.. And then a slow rise till the river empties itself, and the creeks that are now backed up with water, run back out to the river channel.
Of course more rain could certainly change the equation..
But it is too early to say for sure.. And the higher the lake gets, the wider it gets, and the more water it takes to raise the level..
In any case, we are all about to piss our pants around here we are so excited..
This is a hell of a time to have quit drinking..
Get ready.. It's gonna be awesome!
September 27, 2017: Just a quick note to tell you a little about the water rise.. And it is going on!
We have caught six inches since 11:00 this morning.. And we have caught 1.53 feet since yesterday morning at 9:00.
We are sitting at 265.19, or 36.01 feet low..
That means that we are back on the state park ramp as of.. Well probably now.. But certainly by tomorrow morning..
It also means that the old Veleno bridge is no longer visible.. But believe me, it is still there..
The big orange markers on the west end of the bridge are still floating on top.. But it could be that in a day or two, they won't be..
So I put a couple of big yellow jugs tied to one of them on about six feet of cable.. If you no longer see the big orange markers.. Just know they are still under the water, and go round these two jugs to the west..
You do not want to hit those big markers either..
We're glad to have the water coming, but hate to see it when we have a big tourney coming to town.
It is possible that the weigh in will be moved to the state park, due to all the debris in the water up here on top of the lake. I'm pushing for it out of safety concerns.. Lots of big floaters out there..
And if you want to fish the veleno it is all well and good.. But the river is a chocolate mess filled with wood.. Go with caution.. But better to go to the state park..
More soon.. I'm all giddy...
September 26, 2017: Well here it is, the week of the big TABC state tourney, and for the first time in a freakin year, they got rain predicted for most of the week..
Not that I would ever curse the rain.. Heaven knows we need it.. (And I guess that's why they are sending it.) But if I had my druthers, I'd much rather have it next week..
So don't forget your rain gear fellahs.. You might just need it..
One good thing that is also on the way with the predicted rain, is some cooler temperatures.. Highs in the upper eighties.. Are you kidding me..
Better bring a sweater too..
Fishing was decent over the weekend so I hear. The Texas Bass Federation tourney had sixteen or seventeen anglers that fished, and in the boater division, Derrick Kurykendal figured them out the best, and he had a two day weight of forty three pounds and change..
In the non-boater division, Doc Pruski came out on top.. But I am not sure of the weight he had.. Details are still a little light on my end, but I am supposes to have a full report tomorrow..
Congrats to both anglers and good luck in the next round..
Of course I was gone all weekend and I have not heard much on tactics and techniques.. But I have heard this AM that crankin and flipping are both still working..
It is a bit windy here today, so I am not sure that the fishermen that are here will have it too easy out there. Matter of fact, I am sure it is rougher than a weekend with Charlie Sheen..
The above was written yesterday.. Got busy and didn't get back..
Several teams have rolled into town for some pre-prefishing for this weekends tournament. And after talking to a lot of folks the bulk of them will show up today and tomorrow.
Yesterday a decent number of fish were caught, but these guys are pretty tight lipped about the methods and certainly the locations.. Cain't blame em.. But they bought a lot of plastics..
It is still not too late to call me with your license information.. I can get em done and have em ready to slap in your hand when you walk in.. I have plenty of licenses.. But you can make it easier on both of us if we do her early..
Anyway.. It is all good down here.. But bring your rain suit..
One thing I need to mention..
The old Veleno Bridge is barely sticking out of the water.. And with water coming down the river, it is possible that it could be under water before this weekend.. Look for the big orange buoys on your way out of the Veleno and stay to the right (west) of them going out of the Veleno.. Trace your steps on the way back..
If you are not sure about the location please ask when you come in the store and I'll draw you a little map..
This is a Must Miss!! attraction!!
Have you been watching any NFL games on TV..
When you are born in Texas, they stamp that blue star on your ass right after they spank it..
And I have been a loyal Cowboys fan, since I was old enough to know what football was. (I know some of you actually don't like the Cowboys and prefer another team.. Strange as that is..)
No I don't go to the games or buy the jerseys and hats.. But I have loved to watch them and many times scheduled what I was doing to be able to watch the game.
Looks like I won't have to quit fishing early on Sundays to catch a noon game anymore..
Cause the entire fucking NFL can kiss my ass..
I guess these spoiled, coddled, overpaid, prima donnas didn't actually get a dose of history while someone else was taking their college courses (that you paid for) for them.
You might have issues with the police, if you create them.
I am not saying that every policeman is perfect.. But can you imagine life in America without them?
And can accidents happen? Sure and they do.. It is not a perfect world..
But of all people to show blatant disrespect for our national anthem..
Those that live in a world that we cannot even imagine.. Whose security and safety is provided by the very same folks that they profess to hate. In a country with freedoms that others can only dream of..
Well enough said.. They are some dumb fuckers..
This is not the place, or time to show your disapproval..
And the same with the NBA.. They can kiss my ass as well.
I used to be a big Spurs fan.. But after Popavitch shot his mouth off last year.. Well it was easy to quit watching them bastards as well.
You might think I am crazy.. And maybe I am.. But I am old school enough to know that this country didn't just appear overnight... And a lot of people put their ass on the line so that we can enjoy the freedoms that we have today..
Even if it is something as simple as watching a game.. A freaking game.. On TV..
So keep in mind folks.. That these people are just actors in a play.. And if you don't like the show.. You also have the freedom to get up and walk out...
I'm already in the parking lot..
September 20, 2017: Well believe it or not, Falcon is on a slow rise. And there is actually water creeping back up the creek on the north side of the Veleno. How long will it last.. Hell if I know..
Still not a lot of folks fishing down here, but I have seen pics of several eight pound fish the last two days.. One caught deep.. One flipping..
They're everywhere! Or nowhere..
But decent fish have been caught doing most everything, utilizing whatever style of fishing you might prefer..
It's really hard to get a true picture of what is going on with so few fishermen on the water.. And my time has certainly been limited..
I did get out for a couple of hours on Sunday and we caught a few fish in the trees and a few on the rocks. We did not kill them anywhere, but got enough bites to keep us entertained. Best fish came off a rocky ledge here in the Veleno right on the drop and it was about a four pounder.
It and a few others bit a chartreuse square bill. We caught a few flipping, and I also caught a couple on a chrome rattle trap..
That sounds kinda desperate..
There have been a lot of white bass schooling from the mid lake south, and sometimes you can catch some blacks mixed in or underneath the whites. If you can get a bait down past em..
A senko will often work in this situation.. For some reason the white bass don't seem to like one..
The shad are thick on a lot of points, and if you see a bunch of egrets hanging around it is a pretty sure bet that some bass are not too far off..
And I keep forgetting to mention it, but a spinner bait is also catching fish on those points and it has been working pretty decent in those shallow hardwoods when you clank it right off the woods.
Don't think you are too shallow. If your troller is kicking up mud that is a good thing.. Those laydowns that stretch from the bank out can and will have fish on them.
It may be boring, but the garden variety chart/white is as good as any..
If you are flipping the trees in the stained water on the top of the lake, you need to be tossing a a dark colored bait, like the Fightin' Frog in Junebug Red. A Biffle Bug or Beaver will also work well, and so will the Chigger Craw in a dark color.
Any creature bait will work..
And of course the Plum Ol Monster with some Smelly Jelly on it is the only bait you need.. Plum Apple ain't a bad choice either..
A couple of guys on a guide trip caught some fish on deep crankbaits along the dam on Monday. And I don't think that bite ever goes away.
So basically you have twenty plus miles of water to explore..
Nothing has changed with the launching situation, with the county ramp still functioning decently, and I have been on the county to keep the silt cleaned off it so launching two boats at a time is doable..
The state park ramp is creeping back towards usability.. But not yet. Launching off the bank at the end of the boat ramp cut is still working fine. But a 4x4 is a good idea.. You might not need it.. But it sure as hell don't hurt..
The little hurricane that was looking so promising down in the Baja has fizzled out, but it did send a little rain in the right spot. I am ever the optimist, and we have another month or so of storm season in the Pacific to send some rain over those lakes. I'll keep an eye on it, and next time I ain't gonna talk about it till it happens..
It has been a hell of a hurricane season this year, and our hearts go out to those that were and are being affected by all the damage.
But hurricanes are a fact of life when you live near the ocean. Guess it was just our year..
I'm going up to the ranch this weekend, cause Mama says the doves are lousy.. And I have some shells that are two years old that need to be emptied..
We have been busting it here getting ready for the upcoming tourneys, and hopefully we will have everything you could possibly need when you get here.
And if you are coming to fish the TABC tourney, let me remind you once more to call us and let us have your Mexican license ready when you walk in.. We'll have plenty, but it will sure make it easier on both of us if all we have to do is slap it in your hand..
Call us if you have any questions about anything, and we look forward to seeing you next week.. It should be a fun time.
See you soon!
September 15, 2017: The heat is back on down in these parts, with highs topping out about 105° the last few afternoons.. But with humidities in the teens and low twenties, it don't seem too bad..
There are still not a lot of folks down here fishing, and there have been six to eight boats at the ramp here in Zapata most days. Plenty of room for you and your rig..
We have not seen a lot of traffic thru the store the last two weeks, so we don't have a lot of fisherman input to report on.. And it's been eleven days since I last slid it in..
But it ain't going to be much longer.. I don't care what the doctor says..
But those that have fished, have caught some fish. Are they murdering them? I might not go that far.. But there are biting fish out there to be caught..
Flipping and doodlesocking trees is still king, especially on this end of the lake..
Dropshotting and deep cranking are still good down south. Isolated rock humps and ledges can be covered with fish.. Or barren..
But it you look at a few, you will find some..
Old foundations on the main lake river channel have fish on them from marker nine to the dam.. Let me reiterate.. Not all of them.. But many of them..
The shallow ones can have a bunch on them at daylight or shortly thereafter..
Anyway, it is up to you to cover my slack till I get back on the water..
We'll see a little more of what is happening next weekend, as the Bass Federation Boys will be in town.
I been yammering on and on about the lakes on the Conchos for the last month.. And Amistad has actually been the benefactor of several feet of water from the Conchos in the last three weeks.
And speaking of Amistad, I know a lot of you folks are heading there this weekend for the SIT tournament.. Should be fun.. Good luck.. Wish I was going..
Maybe you are watching what's going on out in the Pacific, maybe not.. But in case you ain't..
There's a little storm brewing up south of the Baja that could be of help to those in need of water.. Like us..
I'm crossing my fingers and toes (well nine out of ten toes) and hoping and praying for a wet, but gentle Cat One to cross the peninsula and rain like a sum-bitch.. (I'm trying not to use motherfucker quite so much..)
But whether it rains like a sum-bitch or a motherfucker I really don't care.. Either one will do..
Here's a screen shot of the storms predicted path at about 11:00 this AM..
I put an "X" where I want twenty inches.. But that general area will do.. A little northeast of there is fine.
We'll see what happens. Like I said, this is our best chance for some running water in a long time..
I hear the TABC has twenty seven teams signed up for the state tourney at the end of the month.. That's 216 fishermen, 108 boats.. Yeah.. That weekend should be a little busy around Zapata..
We look forward to seeing all of you..
Now go pray for rain in Mexico!!
September 12, 2017: It's been eight days since I last wrote. And in that time I have missed out on a lot of fantastic days to fish..
Low winds.. Lows in the sixties.. Highs barely breaking ninety.. Awesome..
And half the last eight days are a blur to me.. That anesthesia shit don't go away the moment you wake up..
Anyway I am up and kinda around, and I am typing with two hands.. So it looks like I am on the mend..
The lake level is kinda hovering in the same place it has been for nearly a month.. We were at 262.94 on the fifteenth of last mont.. And this morning we are at 263.08..
So I'll call that about dead level.. We were a inch or so higher.. But that is nothing to talk about..
Releases from the Conchos are still low.. Prayers for more rain in the Mexican mountains are still high..
We need one of these little storms from the equator to slip up the western coast of Mexico and end up in Chihuahua.. It could happen..
Lakes are still at capacity and above in the right places.. We just need some more rain to force the hand of the IWBC into releasing some water..
They certainly have plenty to share.. But they ain't giving us any..
I hate to bitch about them all the time.. But they are a poorly run organization.. It is a government op..
Meanwhile.. Back at the ranch..
Fishing remains good for most folks.. You can pretty much catch em your way right now.. I am excited about the flipping bite, but the scuttlebutt is that nothing has changed with the deep bite down south.
What is true for sure, that there is very, very, light boat traffic on the lake right now.. We have been here three and a half hours this morning.. And not seen a soul..
So if you decide to come down, you won't have too much competition for places to fish..
We have been getting a few calls about boat ramps.. Here in the Veleno the county ramp is still working fine.. The county has been doing a fair job of keeping the silt off the ramp, but some days the west side of it has some dirt on it.. But it is easily useable..
The state park concrete ramp is still out of the water, and we are only a couple of feet from it being serviceable.. What did I say earlier about the IWBC..
In any case, launching off the bank is easily done at this level. Four wheel drive is a plus, but I am hearing that a two wheel drive truck with good rubber will get it done as well.
Just drive past the concrete ramp.. Turn left and follow the waters edge till you get to the end of the channel from the boat ramp. There is a big boulder near the water.. You can launch on either side of it.. But you'll see where everybody is putting in.. No sweat..
You can also launch in the Tigers off the point south of the camp at El Tigre island.
Traveling the lake is not a problem, but when you get back in the creeks and off the main channel you need to pay attention to where you are. There are hardwoods and channel bends aplenty so drive with caution..
Of course this is a no brainer, but just use common sense and you'll be fine.. We've been a lot lower than this a lot of times before.. It's all good..
The South Texas Region of the Bass Federation will be holding their championship tournament here on Falcon in about ten days, and they will be fishing the weekend of the 23rd and 24th.
I believe that twenty something fishermen have qualified to fish it. Registration and captains meeting will be here at FLT on Friday the 22nd from 5 till 6 PM..
We look forward to seeing you guys again, and thanks for choosing Falcon for your tourney.. I don't think it will disappoint..
Of course in about three weeks, Falcon will be hosting the TABC state tournament, and that is scheduled for the weekend of September thirtieth and October first..
Captains meeting will also be here at FLT under the big top on Friday the 29th in the evening.. We look forward to seeing you here!
Once again let me ask you to order your Mexican license in advance. We'll have plenty, but it takes a lot less time to slap one in your hand when you walk in than to wait in a possible crowd to get yours issued.. We can hold it for you or mail it to you if you prefer.. Give us a call at 956-765-4866 and we'll get you fixed up in advance..
Make it easy on both of us..
There have been some decent fish caught this week I hear, but nothing in the DD headlines.. But good numbers of solid three to five pound fish.
But like I said, not many folks to talk to, and I have been out of commission. I think if my wife wasn't looking I might go out today.. But I know I best wait another week or so.. And it is killin' me..
Let me do a little more bitching before I quit..
Last time I was on the lake, eight days ago, I was fishing the woods across from the Veleno..
And I am happy to report that the survival rate of this years hatch of Cormorants was 100%.
I have absolutely never in my life seen seen so many of these black motherfuckers as I saw last Monday. The size of the flock is mind boggling..
And meanwhile the powers that be could give a crap..
Our biologists are coming down to do a habitat study this week, and I am sure they will get a first hand look at what I am talking about.. Again..
There is basically no habitat to study right now.. Hardwoods and rocks.. That's about it..
What else is going on..
Good dove hunting was reported over the last weekend.. And a group of teel hunters came in on Saturday morning, and they said they shot the shit out of them mid-lake..
I am not sure why I have never gotten into waterfowl hunting.. I love killing flying shit.. Guess I hate the cold and wet and early morning shit more..
Like I need another hobby... Habit..
Well I am still hobbling around like Walter Brennan with a hardon, and my fastball probably wouldn't break a carnival plate..
But I can tell I am getting better and before long I plan on getting out on the water and whacking the crap out of some fish and getting behind a shotgun..
Tommy says there are actually some birds at the ranch, and I feel the need to dispatch a limit or two in a couple of weeks when the south zone opens..
And isn't this split season a bunch of crap.. Only so many doves are going to get killed.. Open the season September one and quit confusing everyone.. Who could possibly dream up this kind of bullshit..
Oh yeah.. The government..
Well I hope to see you before too long.. And I hope I am in a boat when I do.. But I'll settle for seeing you here in the store if that's the way it works out..
Either way.. I'll see you then!
September 4, 2017: It's a holiday for most.. But not all of us.. And most folks in east Texas certainly do not have the day off.. I hope your seeing things get a bit better..
But I know for some of you it is not.. I can't imagine how bad it must be.
The holiday weekend around here was really slow. I put the boat in yesterday at 9:00 and there were five other rigs at the ramp.. Bout the same today..
We saw a lot more dove hunters than we did fishermen.
I have been talking about the water in the Conchos.. And most all the lakes are full on the chain.. And it looks like that's the way they will stay.
As of this morning they have really cut back on releases from Luis Leon.. We got the lakes where we need them.. Now we need a real rain over there..
Amazing how wet it can be in one place.. And how dry in another..
But as I type there are thunderstorms rumbling outside.. Maybe we can at least get the grass watered..
I bought a project boat a few weeks back, and I have been working on it while I have been doing little around here..
And yesterday I took it on a test/fishing run to check things out and see how everything worked..
I stopped near the old Veleno bridge, and I'll be damn but I caught the fish really good on both ends.. But better on the east side. That thing gets pounded but for good reason.. Structure holds fish. Go figure.. All but one were keepers.. But nothing over three pounds..
So after a bit I pointed it south and pulled into Pierces, and fished the island at the mouth.. Bout the third cast I caught a fat three pounder.. On a stickbait..
That SOB will catch fish..
Anyway.. About two minutes later the birds started pounding the water near me as a giant school of small white bass were tearing the shad a new asshole.. And I followed them around for thirty minutes and caught the heck out of em..
I stopped when they ran out of heck..
But it was a fun morning and I always liked reeling in whatever was on the other end.. Even though most of the whites were peter length.. And I ain't talking John Holmes..
I wanted to run my regular boat, so this morning I hit the water about nine.. And headed back to the bridge..
About the third or fourth cast I chunked across a big laydown, and low an behold I hooked into something that I could not turn.. Although I had the tree leaning on a 45° degree angle.. The fish pulled off after a two second epic battle..
Shit it coulda been a two pounder.. Knowing these Falcon fish.. But I don't think so, Tim..
Anyway there were a couple of other boats fishing kinda close, so I headed across the river to the hardwoods on the Mexican side.
I fished the outside of the tree line, which is in about ten feet of water.. And had no luck.
And knowing these Falcon fish, I went inside the row of trees, keeping the boat in about four feet of water, and flipped anything within twenty feet..
And I beat em like a red headed stepchild.. It was fuckin awesome!!
Like the old days..
Well not exactly.. Cause the biggest and last fish I caught was just a shade under five pounds.. But there was not a non keeper in the batch.. And I probably caught three limits.. And missed another two.. Sneaky bastards..
I came in about noon and a buddy stopped in and we compared stories.. He caught a few fewer fish than me but he had two fives and a seven, with only one peckerhead in the batch..
He caught his flipping the trees as well, but he was throwing a Plum Ol Monster.. I was using a Rojas Fighting Frog in Junebug Red.
That sounds backward.. He said he missed a good number of fish as well.. These fish ain't exactly thumping it.. So you gotta pay attention.. And if you cain't find your bait.. Jerk!
I did not get a lot of feedback from the weekend, but I did hear tell of a few folks that caught em pretty decent..
The south end of the lake is still fishing pretty good as well.. And the flipping bite is still good on the Mexican side from the Salanaias to the north..
Come fishing.. You're gonna catch some..
The work on the new Veleno bridge continues, and they are making progress.. We might actually drive over the son of a bitch this spring..
The contractor has done a nice job of removing the dirt dam from under new bridge, and thanks to low water conditions, it appears that the slope from above and below match up pretty well..
You may remember it looking more like this..
The old bridge is scheduled for demolition.. When that will start, who knows..
I have decided that I am watching too much television.. Or make that too much television with commercials..
But I have been hell bent on watching the Rangers piss off the chance at a wild card spot. And if you are gonna watch some baseball you're going to have to put up with some commercials..
And I will have to admit that I am seeing a few less commercials for Viagra and Cialis.. I guess that every fifty to eighty year old male is now walking around half cocked, and just a gumdrop and a swig of water away from being petrified..
But don't worry, we are now being inundated with new unspeakable's. That have become.. Well.. Speakable..
Forty years ago, nobody knew if grandma peed in her pants.. We just thought the roof was leaking while she was taking the biscuits out of the oven..
Now granny can wear depends.. And just let er rip when the feeling comes on.. Even if the feeling never comes on and it just happens.. Convenient I guess..
When I was a kid, mentioning a woman's period was unthinkable.. But now you got that Pearl thingy.. Good for heavy days and easy to remove on the light ones.. So the commercial says..
Condom commercials show everything but them putting one on.. But I reckon it is coming.. In the name of education and disease prevention..
Eight year old boys now know what a clitoris is..
Thirty years ago, forty year old males had never heard of it..
And the newest of the unspeakable's has to do with good ol, One A Day Vitamins..
Yep.. They got a new mission.. To make sure you have healthy sperm when you go to impregnating your significant other..
I ain't lying.. I seen it on TV..
I don't think we give kids time to grow up these days.. With what's on TV..
And who the hell knows what they see on the internet.. Being we have to give them all cell phones by the time they're five..
I heard that in New York and California they have to be able to recite all the positions of the Kama Sutra in Sixth grade.. I had a hard enough time with the fuckin presidents..
Try to figure out that Chinese shit..
I ain't that limber..
Well I better quit before yall figure that my earplugs are touching each other..
Come see us if you can.. Pray for the folks in east Texas.. And donate what you can, be it time and or money..
I am going to have some elbow and toe surgery tomorrow and my arm is going to be in a cast for a couple of weeks.. So I am not sure when I will be able to type.. I'm bad enough with two hands..
Guess that hookset finally got to me.. Or the fuckin gout...
September 1, 2017: Less than 24 hours till the start of dove season.. And there is water in every cow track from San Antonio east.. And hunting doves is the last thing on the minds of the folks in SE Texas..
This storm was about the worst case scenario.. Absolute devastation in many areas and the effects will be felt for years. Our hearts and prayers go out to all of you.
It is hard to imagine and prepare for something that is an unknown. And while Harvey was predicted to be bad, it was hard to conceive of this much water in this amount of time.
It is heartbreaking to see the damage and devastation left behind. But this is Texas, and Texans are currently swarming the coast helping their fellowman. And many from out of state are here as well..
God Bless You all... Victims and Volunteers..
August is a slow month around here. And usually Tommy and I schedule our vacations during this period.. Cause it don't take two to watch TV and sell shrimp..
As luck would have it, Tommy and his family were on a Caribbean cruise last week, and to say the least, their coming home schedule was re-arranged..
He got home three days late, and flew from New Orleans to Atlanta to San Antonio.. And his truck is still in Galveston.. Hopefully not being used as a livewell..
I got back yesterday from a dove hunt down in Mexico, and we were basically starved for information on what was going on back home in Texas..
The term has been overused, but I will have to admit that it is gut-wrenching to watch on TV.. I can't imagine being there..
The Falcon watershed missed out on all the rain, and that is not unusual with these gulf storms. They just very rarely put us on the wet side of the storm..
We have caught about six inches of water in the last ten days, as they slowed the releases from Falcon in anticipation of rainfall in the valley. Which did not happen either..
What is happening, is that many of the lakes in northern Mexico on the Conchos have continued to rise. Including the big lake, Boquilla, which was 99% full yesterday. This is a big deal.
Several of the smaller lakes downstream are still overfull, and they have continued controlled releases from Madero and Luis Leon into the Rio Grande. They had upped the release to around 9000 CFS day before yesterday and it looks like they will continue for an indefinite period.
If you are paying attention, you may have noticed tropical storm Linda that is working its way up the Baja peninsula..
This could be a good thing.. For Amistad and Falcon anyway..
You may have noticed that Amistad has caught about a foot and a half in the last couple of weeks. And there is more in the pipeline.. Maybe a lot more. We'll see..
But this is the best chance we have had at catching some real water in five years or more..
Like I said.. We'll see..
Fishing has been about the same around here.. Still decent.. But not off the chain.. You can still catch em the same way we were last month.. See below..
We see a lot of folks here in the store. And we sell a lot of them a Mexican fishing license..
And the vast majority of the time I'll ask , "Where exactly is that,?" When they tell me the name of the small town they are from.. And over the years we have had fishermen from about every berg in the state.
And there is no doubt that there are a ton of fishermen from east Texas. Many of them make an annual (if not more often) trip down here.
And it is depressing to see the names of the towns I have come to know on national TV, covered in water.
But if there is one thing I know, these boys will get past this, and they will build it back even better..
My thoughts are with you guys. And my prayers are going out to you and your families throughout the day..
Stay safe while you are doing what needs to be done..
And we'll see you when we see you..
August 25, 2017: Just an update on the happenings in Zapata.. It is about 3:40 PM here on Friday.
So far we have only had about a quarter inch of rain.. One shower.. The entire town is full of evacuees, and there is not a motel room available..
Looks like this could be a real rainmaker for the coastal plains, but so far the rains are staying to our east. Not unusual for these storms..
Of course you have internet and TV just like me, and you can see that Houston, Corpus, and points east are getting hammered..
I have talked to several groups of folks that are enjoying Zapata hospitality, but not because they want it that way.
Prayers out to all affected and displaced, and here's to hoping it won't be as bad as it appears.
I'll let you know if anything exciting happens around here..
August 24, 2017: Well Harvey has been peaking the interest of a lot of folks. Both here and across the state of Texas.
For two different reasons I would imagine..
I know the vast majority of folks that are watching the happenings in the gulf are kind of apprehensive about what the storm might bring.
Round here we are are doing a rain dance..
My wife had the weather channel on when I went home yesterday evening. And boy they like to spread the doom and gloom.. You would have thought that there was a Cat 5 out there in the gulf breathing down on us..
We'll see what happens.. But if you think they can predict what will happen four days out, you are crazy.. Much as they would like you to believe they can..
We will certainly welcome the rain in south Texas, and lets hope the valley gets a good soaking and they'll shut off the flow from the dam.
When it comes to putting water in Falcon, now there is another story.
We know that Falcon catches no significant water from gulf hurricanes. Don't we..
Real water for Falcon comes from the Conchos river in Mexico..
Now that we have that settled..
Some good things are happening out west.. Or northwest..
Good rains have continued to fall over the mountainous terrain in the Conchos water shed, and lake levels have continued to rise on several of the lakes in the system.
Including Boquilla, which has come up to 92% as of Tuesday.. Two days ago.. And I have not received a report since then.. But it looks promising..
All of these lakes funnel into the last lake in the line before the water makes way into the Rio Grande.. And that of course is Luis Leon.
And on Tuesday it was at 130% and was releasing 8300 CFS into the Rio Grande..
There are other lakes over pool on the system as well, and what we need is for rains to continue and force the hand of the IWBC into releasing a meaningful amount of water.
Being that no other method of negotiation has ever brought us any water..
The IWBC is run by a bunch of semi academics with no real experience in making a living in the real world..
Typical of government beauracracies.. The size of the organization and amount of waste is scandalous..
Come on Donald.. You got room on your plate for one more course..
While we are on the subject of government boondoggles, the coast guard cadets are back down riding with the Border Patrol doing you the service of violating your fourth amendment rights..
Fucking with you as you try to enjoy a peaceful day of fishing..
So be prepared if you get unlucky enough to get pulled over by the Gestapo..
There goes thirty minutes of your day.. I am sure they will be gone in a few days. These are mostly weekend warriors filing in their quotas.. Some of em got a lot of Barney Fife in em..
But shit this is supposed to be a fishing report.. Not Brietbart..
There have been a couple of groups down this week, and they have bout got the fish figured out. The last few days they have been smoking them in the trees.
It appears that the flipping bite is on, and they have reported fish in the trees from the Veleno to the Salanaias.
They have been really surprised how shallow the fish have been. Many fish, and some good fish, coming from water barely knee deep..
One boat had over a hundred fish on Tuesday, and several of them had thirty five to fifty..
Size you ask.. Nothing reported over seven and a half but some good solid fours and fives for most all boats every day..
These guys are having some fun. And if you are wondering, there are eleven of them..
There is also another small group in town that is whacking them in the woods as well..
And that about does it.. Fifteen anglers on the entirety of Falcon all week.. Plus a few locals.. And they have been doing pretty good as well.
Small flipping baits like a Chigger Craw or a Rage Craw or Super Speed Craw are doing well..
One of my buddies is doing really good on Speed worms in Junebug Red..
There is still a crankbait bite going on, but this week the fishermen prefer the trees..
I guess cause the fish do as well..
Besides.. Who the heck wants to chunk a giant crankbait with a car hood for a bill, when you can pitch a worm in a hardwood, and go at em mano a mano..
That's the kinda shit I like.. Getting a semi just thinking about it..
But if you prefer, you can still catch some fish crankin.. But right now it sounds like the woods is the place to be..
Yeah I been stuck in here for near a week, as Tommy is on Vacation..
And guess where he went.. Yep; on a cruise thru the Caribbean.. Down past the Yucatan..
Wonder if he's ever coming home.. Supposed to land in Galveston on Saturday.. Good luck..
I'm heading to Mexico dove hunting on Sunday.. SO.. If the store is closed on Monday, you know he is probably washed up on some beach, leaning on a coconut tree, swilling rum..
Drink up, Me Hardies, Yo Ho!!
This weekend is looking like a washout (and I hope the hell it is) so I don't reckon I'll be seeing you in all the old familiar places..
And once again my Daddy was right..
"Opening weekend of dove season they'll be water in every cow track.."
He's been a lot more accurate than the national weather service..
See you when we bob back to the surface..
August 18, 2017: Another work week has pretty much passed.. And we didn't do too much work around here.
At least not related to selling tackle. It's been pretty slow..
Of course with twenty plus MPH winds everyday, it tends to kill a lot of motivation to get on the water.. Especially the midlake south..
They be monsters here... Monster waves that is..
And every evening about six the sea breeze gets here and it will damn near blow the house down..
On Monday I was talking about things being a little slow in the fishing category.. And wouldn't you know it, several boats managed to have some really good days.
Some buddy's of mine caught a eight and a nine the same morning, on crankbaits on the hump just west of the flood gates.. Yep.. The same one that everybody fishes..
But they fish it for a reason. That son of a bitch holds fish. As does the rip rap on the dam.
Another boat also caught them good on crankbaits with big fish going around six pounds.
Both of these boats reported thirty to thirty five fish per day. They also caught some fish on plastics in the same neighborhoods. A Carolina rig is a good choice with your favorite bait on there. A fluke or a brush hog will work.. Seems that smaller ain't a bad idea.
Some other fellows caught em decent here in the Veleno, around the old bridge and associated rockpiles and roadbeds. They had a five and a six in that general vicinity.
The common denominator for a couple of these boats was a 5XD in Sexy Shad.
I've said it a time or two before that that bait is a dead ringer for our threadfin shad. No wonder why it works..
So that's about it.. Three or four out of town boats were all that were here this week.. It is August and the last week before school starts.. Or in some cases it may have already..
The top of the lake is still off color, and while a lot of you are probably used to fishing stuff that looks worse; I just don't like it. And if the wind keeps up, it's not going to clear up much anytime soon.. Lots of dirt and sand banks on the Mexican side up here, and those waves just keep it stirred up. Water is pretty south of marker nine, and better as you go farther south.
I did hear that you can still catch plenty of small fish on the windblown rocks. A square bill is still catching them, or you can put a speed craw on a short arm C-rig, or throw a drop shot and have a bunch of fun.
On the south end of the lake, white bass have been schooling on shad on the surface and you can catch all you want if you run into a pod of them. Keep an eye out for the seagulls crashing the water..
There have also been a lot of them around the mouth of, and just inside Pierce's cove at marker seven.
The crappie on brush piles have slowed a bit.. I reckon they are hanging out in deeper water. But you can still catch em off the brush.. It just is not as fast and furious as it was a couple of months ago.. There are still catchable fish on the concrete tower at the Mexican outlet.
And no it is not a cement tower.. Cement comes in a sack..
So here I am.. Stuck in the store for nine more days.. Bored to tears..
But I have made some nice arrowhead frames..
I am working on getting ready for the TABC state tourney.. Plenty of details to take care of.. But I got it going on...
That's the last week in September by the way, in case you are making plans.. I imagine that motel rooms will be scarce about then.
Last Monday I was talking about some water coming into the Rio Grande at Presidio, from the Conchos river in Mexico.. I wish it was more, but the good news is that it is still coming at this point.
And it actually just started to hit Amistad yesterday. Those two smaller lakes are still overfull, so lets hope that they will release water for a good while..
And lets pray that the rains keep coming in those mountains in northern Mexico. Because those guys just don't seem to release water unless they have to.. And I want em to have to..
It takes an event to put a bunch of water in Falcon.. And we are on the verge of it being a possibility.. Best chance we have had in a few years.. And it's gonna happen.. Sooner or later..
If the world don't come to an end first..
Holler at me if I can be of service.. And if you are coming down to fish the TABC tourney, do us both a favor and order your Mexican licence in advance. It's liable to be a zoo around here, and if I have your license in will call, or I already mailed it to you it will save you time when you get here..
We look forward to seeing you!
August 14, 2017: Well here we are smack dab in the middle of August, and who would have guessed it.. It's hot and windy. And I don't have to go Nostradamus to predict that it will be hot and windy next August either.
It's that time of year..
The fishing is not as hot as the weather, and the bite seems to be a bit sluggish for most folks..
Of course there are always a few over achievers that happen on a few good fish. But it has been pretty tough the last few days. Fortunately the moon is fading and the morning bite should improve as the week progresses.
San Antonio Bass Club was in town over the weekend and their results were less than spectacular on Saturday. They fish a three fish format, and after day one everyone in the club was still in it, as the heavy sack of the day was just under ten pounds.
Several folks caught some five and six pounders but did not catch much to go with it. I did not get the final results after yesterdays fishing.
It was good to see you folks and thanks for stopping in and leaving some of your hard earned money here at FLT.
The lake has leveled off and pretty much stayed level the last two weeks. We are sitting at 262.94, or 38.26 feet low. We have actually caught a few inches of water the last couple of weeks.
Launching at the state park is of course still off the bank, but at this particular level it is working pretty good.. Four wheel drive is a good thing, but I have heard that two wheel drive is also do-able.
The county ramp here in Zapata is still working fine, although the ramp is pretty flat.
More on water in a bit..
From what I heard, the crankbait bite and the flipping bite were both slow the last few days.
Flukes and brush hogs were probably the best when it comes to soft plastics. The same old hard baits are still working, albeit slower this last week.
When fishing offshore, hard bottoms with a fast depth change are a must.
Smaller fish can be plentiful on squarebills and occasionally spinnerbaits on those rocky windblown points.
Nothing too complicated about it..
And don't be afraid to rig you up a dropshot if things are a bit slow. Throw it out there on those rocky drops and shake it like a dog shittin' peach seeds.. You might be surprised what you catch. That Plum Apple is still a good color choice on the drop shot.
Earlier I was talking about water.. Or a lack of it..
But there is something happening in northern Mexico that has not happened in a few years.
If you are a long time reader of this report, you have no doubt heard me talk about the Concho river.
The Conchos has a pretty big watershed in the mountainous terrain in north central Mexico. And there are a bunch of small lakes on the chain..
And one big son of a bitch..
A couple of weeks ago you may have heard about a bunch of flooding in Phoenix, and the same storm system of monsoon rains dampened the ground, or should I say rocks, on the Concho watershed.
I always talk about three lakes on this chain.
Boquilla, which is almost the size of Falcon when it comes to water volume at capacity.
Madero, which is a goldfish bowl.
And Luis Leon which is even smaller.
But in the last two weeks, Boquilla has gone from 68% to 80%.
Madero has gone from 98% to 103%.
And Luis Leon that has gone from 87% to 144%.
Luis Leon is the last in the chain before the Concho runs into the Rio Grande at Presidio in the Big Bend. And currently they are releasing about 5400 CFS, and that water is hitting the Rio Grande and has been for the last few days.
There was also a bit more rain in the Rio Grande watershed and it has the river levels up a decent amount.
I am not sure how long they will release water, but this is the first time in a while that I am mildly enthused about the potential of us catching some water..
Of course they horde the water in those lakes and often times they won't release it unless they have to..
But it is plain to see that they could easily put some in Falcon if they wanted to.. They've got plenty..
Of course what we need to happen is more rain in the same areas.
There have been a shit ton of storms in the Pacific, but all of them have been heading too far west to help in this area.
What we need is a couple of storms to go up the Sea Of Cortez's ass and drench the aforementioned area. Or have a low sit over it for a good while..
I've got my fingers crossed..
Mazatlan would be a good target point.. I'll keep you posted..
What the hell else is happening..
Dove season is only two week away..
Sharelunker season is only six weeks away..
And I don't know if you heard, but supposedly this year Sharelunker is undergoing a few changes.
Final plans are probably being hashed out this week as TPWD is having their annual confab starting tomorrow.
There have been a lot of ideas put forward, but nothing has been set in stone as of this writing.. I'll let you know what I hear.
I'm going to be trapped in here for the next twelve days as Tommy is going to take some time off.
Oh yeah.. You can start buying your new fishing/hunting license starting tomorrow..
I know I am excited about standing in front of that machine for the next two weeks..
Where's my Dr. Scholls?
August 7, 2017: The first week of August is shot to hell, and we have made it full circle to the full moon.. And like I have said a thousand times before, early morning fishing on Falcon during a bright moon phase can be a little slow. So it ain't a big deal if you want to sleep in a bit before you hit the water..
But the delay in getting on the lake does reduce the time you fish while temperatures are below 90.. Which happens about noon around here these days..
But while I am typing this, a bad ass thunderstorm is kicking San Antonio's butt.. And maybe parts of it will make it down here..
Hope springs eternal..
Fishing conditions were awesome the last week, with the exception of the bright night time moon. We had a week of low winds, and some days no wind.. Which ain't the blessing we sometimes take it for.. It can get hottern' Lucifer's shoes out there in a hurry..
Last Wednesday it was as slick as glass.. And the heat index was a bitch.. Hot enough to make a lizard wear sandals..
I'll still take it over fifty degrees any day.. Fifty degrees at fifty MPH equals a wind chill of thirty nine..
Piss on that.. I'm getting a chill just thinking about it..
How long have we been talking about the deep crankbait bite around here? Seems like forever but I guess it has been a good six months..
Well we're still talking about it.. Cause that what seems to be catching most of the big fish.. Not all of em.. But most of em..
I did see a pic of a 10-2 this AM that was caught on a jig..
There have also been some good fish caught lately on a Drop Shot.. Make that a power Drop Shot.. The power being delivered by heavier line.. These fish could give a shit.. Big line ain't gonna scare em off..
Once in a while a certain color bait seems to out-produce most others, and here lately the Plum Apple has been kicking ass.. (Thought I was going to say Plum didn't you..)
Well it is a Plum variant.. And of course I ain't sure if it is all that important to the fish but it sure has been to several groups of fishermen..
Any ledge or hump top can have fish on it.. Sometimes they are biting, sometimes they are not.. But that's fishing wherever you go..
This ain't first hand knowledge, but I have heard that the Tigers have started to put out a few more fish..
And while we're talking about Tigers, you need to keep an eye on your map in there while traveling at high speed and stay in the creek channels.. There are a bunch of ridges and humps in the big body of water on the north side and if you are headed back to Big Tiger you need to round the corner wide to the southeast..
There is some three foot water well out from the big point when you turn back north.. It's not too complicated, but something you need to keep in mind.. There is still a shit load of good water in there.. You could fish the Tigers for a week and not fish it all..
The flipping bite is still good to fair on a lot of hardwoods that are near deep water.. They can be in two feet and still have fish in them.. But I have found the flats with woods are not as good as the woods that have a creek or drop nearby.
Concentrate on the outer edges of tree lines and break lines and like always, be sure to hit that isolated or last tree on the point extra hard.. There are fish in there.. Don't forget to think shade either..
A Fighting Frog, Baby Brush Hog, or even a Super fluke can be really good in them woods.. Of course the darker the water the darker the bait..
And them crankbait fish still seem to prefer a citrus shad or a blue and chartreuse color in the maker of your choice..
Of course if you are throwing a square bill some, and who ain't, sexy shad is a great choice.. You can also catch a bunch of fish on a chart/white spinnerbait on the shallow rocks.. Look for our feathered friends on the points.. The white ones..
Not them fuckin' cormorants.. Who have again increased in population this year.. I have never seen so many in the summer.. These bastards never leave..
If there ain't ten thousand of them in this flock on the top of the lake I'll eat your hat..
How we coming on that TPWD?
If I was in charge I'd be on the phone to the EPA every day trying to get this cancer fixed..
I find it hard to believe that everyone in the EPA is an idiot, so someone, somewhere, has to be able to see the light and give us a lookover.. The problem being that they do not even know that this problem exists..
Is anybody ever going to help us?
Someone has to make this a priority.. Someone besides me.. They won't let me handle the problem.. Or I'd personally get it fixed..
How come the cormorant problem hasn't been leaked??
At this water level, with no real cover in the lake, it is easy pickens for these bastards.. And our fish populations are being hammered by these mother fuckers every day..
Let's see.. 10,000 birds.. Half pound of fish a day... That's 5,000 pounds of fish a day..
That's a hundred and fifty thousand pounds of fish a month..
That's one Million, eight hundred thousand pounds of fish a year!!
You think the netter's are hurting the lake??
You think fishermen are hurting the lake?
How we can enforce laws pertaining to the last two items mentioned, and ignore the birds is mind-boggling to me..
It's the epitome of the elephant in the room story...
And on it goes..
August 1, 2017: Well, as Sly and the Family Stone would say, "It's Hot Fun In The Summertime.."
Hell Yeah.. It is August, after all.. And it has been a hot bitch this last week, with most days topping out around 105 to 107..
Not for the weak of heart.. Or the strong of heart for that matter..
The way I see it though, we bout got this summer by the ass... And I predict a late August cool front that will put the first nail in the coffin of summer 2017..
And you know when dove season opens September 1st, there will be water in every cow track..
That is a saying that my Daddy used for years.. And I never gave it much thought till a few years back.. Yeah I get the inference that it will be wet for opening day..
But how can there be cow tracks when it hasn't rained in forty days.. They've all turned to dust..
I sure miss you, Pops..
Speaking of cows..
Did you ever listen to a radio station that had a secret sound contest in the morning.. Or anytime for that matter..
You know.. You call in and try to guess the secret sound and win a fabulous prize..
I was thinking that they should have used the sound of a big sloppy cow patty hitting the ground from a long legged Guernsey just off the oat patch.
That would have stumped them city dwellers for a few hours.. Dairy workers ain't got time to listen to the radio..
It could have also made a good U-tube video.. Someone following a cows ass around with a microphone trying to get the ultimate soundbite..
On second thought.. I just remembered; it's already been done.. I forgot about CNBC..
How the hell did I get on that.. But it would have been better than the sound of a rattling exhaust fan in the crapper at a roadside truck stop...
Let's talk fishing.. There's a novel thought..
There were several groups of fishermen here last week, and a couple of them were Falcon newbies..
And as is often the case, sometimes the new comers, that don't already have a pre-conceived plan of action, happen to get on the fish and whack the hell out of em..
And a couple of boys from the Houston area did.. They caught three or four over eight, and a good number of five to six pound fish. I seen the pictures..
Now I'll have to admit that these guys were hard core.. And they fought the wind and heat and put in their time.
They're favorite bait was a 8XD in Powder Blue Back Chartreuse..
Fishing the rocks of course.. And along the old Veleno bridge here on the north end.
Speaking of the old Veleno bridge, here is what it looked like on Sunday.. Two days ago..
So you can see why we are trying to have you avoid it.. You're not going to defeat it with your lower unit..
At least for now, it will be easy to miss.. And no you are not dreaming.. That is Falcon without any waves.. A rarity the last two months..
Anyway, if you have been paying attention, this crankbait fish catching has been going on for quite some time.
The local guides are doing a lot of the same, but even they will admit that there is some hit and miss involved. All days are not created equal..
Another couple of guys fished the dam for three days.. And caught em good on beaver type baits and Fighting Frogs on light Carolina rigs. They also said they did good where the dam runs out into the Mexican side in the woods and rocks.
I fished a few hours yesterday, and hit windy rocks around Bob's Knob with a square bill and caught them pretty good.. And then left biting fish to find some more biting fish.
And I found a few small fish in the woods in the creek on the Texas side across from marker eight.
The fish in the trees are shallow.. Real shallow.. And if you like flipping hardwoods and laydown's, there are tons of them in there..
If you can't take the heat, you won't last much longer than Scaramuchi..
But fishing till eleven or noon is not too bad.. We have been close to 100° by noon these last two weeks..
In the short term, we are supposed to be back below 100 the rest of this week, as this high pressure is supposed to move west, and allowing for a chance of rain on Wednesday thru Friday.
Speaking of rain, we have had only 1.1 inches of rain fall in the last month. We due, baby..
There has been a lot of rain in the Mexican mountains in northern Mexico , and the lakes that feed the Conchos are catching some water.. It's nothing to get your panties in a bunch over just yet.
There have been a ton of storms in the Pacific, but so far they have all tracked west, away from the Sea of Cortez, where they need to go to do us any real good.
But as far as water volume goes, there is plenty of water in the Mexican lakes to give us some.. But it ain't been happening..
Water releases from Amistad have increased this week, but at current rates of catch and discharge we might just hold level. What little water that is coming is just hitting the lake.
We are sitting at 262.79 this morning, or 38.41 feet low.
It's pretty slow as far as numbers of fishermen go around here, but I reckon it is about normal for August. Dealing with boredom is not one of my better traits, and I am struggling with keeping myself occupied.
I am, however looking forward to having the TABC state tournament here come late September. It should be a good one with lots of biting fish and a lot of good fishermen.
Depending on what lake levels do, we'll have to see what struggles we have with ramps and hazards come that time, but we have been a lot lower in recent memory, and we'll make do just fine.
I'm always worrying about hazards in the lake, but hell a lot of lakes in north and east Texas deal with this shit all the time. Even when the lakes are full. So we ain't no worse off than a lot of folks..
And I promise to keep you updated on relevant changes to the conditions.
And while it is still hot, the calendar don't lie..
We are only a month away from dove season, football season is about underway, and school starts in less than a month.
And before you know it Trump will be pardoning the Thanksgiving turkey..
I have kinda weaned myself from all the political bullshit on TV, but I swear that the news organizations make more noise than a girls dugout.
Speaking of dugouts, the Little League World Series starts on the 17th of this month, and we look forward to watching it every year..
I look at it as basically man training for young boys.. Learning to spit.. Seeing how much bubble gum you can fit in your mouth.. Signing autographs for the girls.. And making sure you are adjusting your package only when the camera is on you..
And finally understanding a very important fact of life..
Chicks dig the long ball..
And unless the Astros go 51 Dodgers, they should be around in the post season.. MLB World Series coming in late October..
In any case, you still got time to bring the youngsters fishing before school starts..
Holler at us if we can answer any questions or help you in any way..
See you when you get here!
July 25, 2107: Well if summer ain't here, what we got will last till it does get here.. It's hotter than a three peckered billy goat in a pepper patch..
And to get the wind chill down to about 101° we have a nice twenty mile an hour wind most days..
Ah, but summer it is for the next sixty days.. Weather we like it or not.. I bitch a lot more about the cold..
Fishing till mid-day is not really that bad.. But as I type this it is ten till noon and it is 95°..
Enough on the weather.. This is Zapata and it is supposed to be hot..
I talked to a couple of the guides around here this morning, and they had a really good day yesterday, throwing crankbaits down south.
Where have you heard that before?
These fish ain't everywhere, but if you put in some time you are going to run into some sooner or later. They said they caught a good number of fish between five and eight pounds yesterday, and mixed in a story about the one that got away.. Sounds about normal..
Fact is that these fish are hot water lovers, and you'd swear that some of that jalapeno juice got rubbed on their assholes because they are just plain pumped up and mean as a snake..
The other day I was yelling for the net and when this monster came to the boat it was only a three pounder..
These SOB's are strong..
I have not been doing much fishing as of late; some blame on me being lazy, some on it being hot, but mostly cause the freakin wind is blowing a gale every time I have the time to go..
But suffice it to say, not much has changed when it comes to methods and tactics while we are set in our summer pattern..
Which ain't much different than our winter pattern..
You can throw your deep diving crankbaits on the submerged rocks and old houses, or you can get up shallow and flip em' out of the hardwoods.
The deep bite seems better on cranks than plastics. And the shallow bite is good on small plastic offerings and spinnerbaits. And if you are throwing a spinnerbait you better be hanging on to your rod. Cause they are crushing it when they eat it..
Water color on the top of the lake is shitty.. And just ten days ago, when the wind had settled for a few days, it looked great.
Matter of fact, the water just across from the Veleno was giving up a lot of fish as the water turned green.. But it is back to dirty with all the wave action, and the catching slowed down in those trees, as it typically does when the water mucks up..
You have to get down to school Bus or so before it clears up a bit.. The water in School Bus looks great. As do most creeks and the main lake south of marker nine..
We are not dropping a foot a week, but we are still losing water every day. I wish there was something I could do to get them to give us some water.. But I am not sure what it would be. Ain't nobody else having any luck either..
There has been a lot of wailing and gnashing of teeth..
We are sitting at 263.42, or 37.78 feet low.. And that is just ridiculous when you see how much water is in the Mexican lakes.
I ain't asking for twenty feet of water.. But four feet would be nice. That takes the Old Veleno bridge out of the danger zone, it makes the state park ramp work fine, and greatly improves the county ramp here in Zapata.
It's absurd that we have to deal with these conditions. The problem is that the Mexicans have no vested interest in having our lakes at a decent operating level. They have nothing on the lake of concern when it comes to water levels..
It's (past) time to enforce the treaty.. But I know we won't.. Because our politicians are pussies..
If I was in charge I'd pipe the Colorado to the Rio Grande about a mile north of the Arizona/Mexico border..
And I'd build that pipeline from the Mississippi to west Texas starting tomorrow..
What a great idea.. Think how much water we could store in lakes we built for it.. Instead of having it just run into the gulf and adding to sea level rise.. And flooding out thousands all the time..
Maybe we could save California!! (Yeah, there are drawbacks to every scenario..)
In a realistic sense, all I can do is hope and pray for rain in the right places in copious amounts that end up in the Rio Grande.
We need a low to sit over Del Rio and Eagle Pass and rain its ass off.. Slower but longer lasting, we need a series of hurricanes to hit north western Mexico and over run their lakes where they hoard all the water..
There have been storms lining up like a daisy chain in the Pacific but they are all taking a westward track so far. Last week there were five named storms at one time going, and not one turned north. Currently there are three.. All headed west..
It is my belief that we will never be full until Amistad is. It just can't rain enough between us and Del Rio to get it done.. But the right storm could bring us ten feet.. I've seen it before.. Especially at this level..
We are seven years removed from being full.. Seems like an eternity ago..
Well I'll quit bitching for today.. But I am sure it is only temporary.
See you on the water!
July 18, 2017: The last week has vanished and I am not even sure where it went. I mean.. It was Thursday... And now it is Tuesday..
Fishing has been pretty decent.. Or crappy.. I'm not sure which side to come down on.. Last week things were pretty tough from most reports, but over the weekend we heard stories of big numbers of fish, from both near and far.
Far being the south end of the lake..
During my absence, I have been fishing a little, but very little.. And that needs to change.
Over the weekend, and the last couple of days, we have had some pretty calm winds, and the water has really cleared up on the upper end of the lake, at least up to the Veleno. And if the low winds persist, and the water remains fairly clear, the hardwoods on the river channel should be getting right for flippin'.
And I am gonna hit em tomorrow.. Lord willing..
There were four bass clubs in town last weekend, and some fishermen caught the heck out of the fish. But I heard a lot of small fish stories with those big numbers of fish.
I heard that a drop shot on rockpiles down south will catch you all the fish that you can count.. Well maybe all of the fish that I can count.. You might be a better counter than me..
I gotta get naked to count to twenty one.. And that's really only twenty and a half..
But I digress..
Lizards in the woods caught a lot of fish as well I heard, along with brush hogs and flukes and whatever your favorite flipping bait is..
Kris Hunter of Universal City bass club caught this 9.23 on Saturday. She said she caught it on W/M red brush hog with the tips dyed chartreuse.. In one and a half feet of water.. Sounds about right..
There was also an eight something caught by someone in SAPD bass club, but I don't have pics or details..
Medina Lake Bass Club was also down, and they caught em pretty fair.
And Quality bass club was also here, and they had a few decent fish weighed in as well.
If any of you guys would like to pass on pics or results I'd appreciate it..
Thanks to all of you who made our weekend a lot brighter by stopping in to visit.. And shop.. Thanks for your business!
Big stringers of the weekend were typically around twenty pounds, give or take a bit..
A few nice fish were caught on deep diving crankbaits down south, but no giants..
Last week I was talking about some crankbait fish, as catching a whopper here lately seemed to entail the use of big hard baits. With big ass bills.. On the end of big ass rods.. Powered by tired arms..
There is no argument that that stuff turns into work.. But it can have it's rewards.
Joey Hurley and Cooper Dozzier and were down here for over a week, and they threw big crankbaits at them a lot.. A whole lot.. And they were rewarded for their efforts.. They also caught a couple over eight and several sevens.
Unemployment does have its rewards..
If the wind stays down a bit, and the water remains clear, I think the top of the lake is going to turn on.. There are too many fish that have been pulled out of the backwater.. They have to be out here close to the river channel.. And I'm gonna find em.. I think some folks already have..
Oh BTW.. The spinnerbait bite has really picked up a bunch in the last two weeks.. Drag it right by them hardwoods.. Specially on a cloudy day .. With a little breeze..
I reckon you can catch em any day, anyway.. You just gotta get out there and get after em.. I swear I fished more when I lived three hours away..
Speaking of which.. As in no time to freakin fish..
Last week I was telling you that the IWBC, out of the kindness of their hearts, decided to send us a couple of buoys to put on the bridge.. After several boats totaled last week..
Well this morning we finally had time to install them. Being I have nothing else to do.. IWBC provided these monstrosities.. Dr. Ikes generously donated the cables and fasteners, and Robert from Amigo Inn and I installed em..
You don't want to hit them either.. When the water comes up, I'll have to put markers on the markers.. Or somebody will have to.. Depending on when it happens..
These buoys are right on the west end of the bridge. If you run to the west side of them (right side leaving the Veleno) you will have no problems. There is a rockpile off the end of the bridge, but currently there is about seven feet of water over it.. We will mark it if need be in the future.. Personally I hope these buoys are under the water in a few weeks..
Unless you have the IQ of Maxie Waters, you should be able to avoid the bridge.. But if that is the case, you probably can't read this, so it would be a moot point..
I will keep you updated if anything changes.. I think I'll send the IWBC a bill for installation..
Thanks to Dr. Ikes for the fasteners, and Robert Riessig and Doug Fett for the time and labor!
I'm planning on fishing tomorrow.. If the wind ain't blowing a gale.. But it is supposed to..
See you on the water.. Hopefully with your lower unit still attached..
July 10, 2017: Well the Fourth of July seems like a distant memory.. And so does another foot of water..
We are still dropping a lot faster than anybody would like.. And I guess there ain't anything we can do about it..
With the dropping water levels, the old Veleno Bridge has already claimed at least two victims. One worse than the other.
Right now the bridge rails are just under the water enough to hide themselves.
YOU MUST STAY TO THE RIGHT GOING OUT OF THE VELENO WHEN YOU PASS THE BRIDGE!
If you don't know where it is we will be glad to draw you a simple map so you can avoid it..
The problem is that everyone that comes down here doesn't read this report.. (Although I don't know why..)
Maybe they're Democrats.. I dunno
Please spread the news to your buddies if you know they are headed this way.
But the real problem is that the International Water and Boundary Commission, with a fifty million dollar budget, can't even keep these hazards marked. Much less remove them..
It is fucking ridiculous..
It should be no surprise though, as they can't even keep their Mexican counterparts from taking our water as well as theirs.
Typical of Federal Government.. This is a piss poor run organization..
Want to really get pissed off? Go read about the beauracracy that this boondoggle is..
It is a shame..
The state park ramp should no longer be used.. If it is open, all you are going to do is suck up a bunch of silt into your motor.. But it can't work past tomorrow.. If you are headed down there, take a 4x4 and plan to launch off the bank down towards the point..
It sucks, but it is what it is..
I feel better now..
There is still plenty of water in the lake, and fishing has been good or bad, depending on who you talk to..
There have been a couple of boys down here catching big fish on crankbaits, on offshore ridges and ledges down by the dam. Of course they have been here for a week and have braved the conditions daily.
It has been hot and windy.. But not un fishable..
I have fished a couple of days in the last week, but have not had as good an outing as I had two weeks ago.
I do believe the big ass moon the last few nights has made the early bite virtually non existent.. At least for me..
But that is not unusual around here.. Several folks have told me the same thing..
That being said, if you are an early riser, (earlier than me) you can catch some top water fish here in the Veleno right up against the rocks. Right up against the rocks.. Right up against the rocks..
I was late the other day, but still caught a few chunks on a Whopper Plopper, just as the sun was hitting the water..
Flipping the trees in about four to six feet of water has been good for me lately.. At least till the last week.. I'm still catching a few.. But not like ten days ago..
The crankbait has been king here lately.. A big deep diver is best.. If you are targeting big fish.. I'm probably the only one that ain't..
For that flipping.. A Baby Brush Hog in W/M Red with chart dipped tails is hard to beat, in any clearer water.. Stick with darker baits north of marker nine.. We also caught some yesterday on a 3/8 ounce jig tipped with a half a Rage Craw..
And yes Virginia, there is still a square bill bite going on windblown rocky points..
Some folks have had some luck with a jig fished deep.. But I have not heard of many folks throwing one..
If I was looking for a big fish, I would fish the dam and all the humps around it.. With a big crank.. Bait..
There are not a lot of folks fishing down here right now.. So there is plenty of room for you..
There are a few bass clubs coming this weekend, so we'll see how they do.. I think they'll whack em as this full moon cycle phases out..
Keep in mind when you are running around out there, that there are trees that skirt the river channel on the upper end of the lake. Just because you are a hundred yards from dirt, don't mean that you aren't near a hardwood. If you are going to be hauling ass, please drive basically from marker to marker..
It's pretty self evident once you get out there..
It is embarrassing that this shit with the bridge is happening again..
I'm gonna go make some phone calls.. Again..
July 2, 2017: Well here it is two days before the Fourth of July. In 2017 no less.. My, My.. Where has the time gone..
I remember Sister Mary Helena back in the first grade.. Besides Tommy still having pinch marks from her, she wasn't really that bad..
Discipline was the order of the day.. Good thing I never screwed up..
Anyway, I remember her asking us how old we'd be in the year 2000.. And I wasn't very good at math, but I got out my big fat red pencil and my Indian Chief tablet and did some ciphering..
Of course me being six or seven at the time, I blurted out. "Shit Sister.. I'd be forty five! But the answer to your question is I'll be dead! Nobody lives that long!"
Well here I am today pushing sixty three, seventeen years past the turn of the century.. And maybe living on borrowed time, considering the fun I had in my youth.. My Dad said I must be made out of rubber after seeing some of the cars I crawled out of..
Anyway, growing up is harder on some kids (and kids parents) than others.. It's possible that I could have fallen into that category.. And taken my Folks along for the ride..
Those days back in Catholic school were interesting, to say the least. From doing the practice for nuclear fallout by hiding under your desk.. To getting whopped with a roll of Hy-Times magazines.. (Like a rolled up newspaper on steroids) To serving at mass every morning at 7:00..
To choosing teams at lunch for whatever sport we were playing.. We would just yell "Alamo," and save the team picking time.. And nobody ever got offended..
Some of you may have a dim view of the Catholic church, and I can understand that, but I can tell you it was small town picture perfect when and where I was a kid..
But I have been a lucky bastard all my life.. The Catholic school closed after I finished fifth grade, because of money of course, and I jet-a-pulted into Medina Valley public school in Junior High.
Of course Junior High turned into puberty and I followed my pointer all the way thru high school..
If it wasn't for Creedence Clearwater Revival, Sports, and chasing girls I would have never made it..
I did a lot better with music and sports than with the girls.. Even though I had eight (count em, eight) speakers in my 63' Chevy II.. Of course six of em were purloined from drive in movie theatres..
I graduated from High School in 1974, and the draft was no longer being utilized, and there was such an anti-war sentiment in the country at the time that few were enlisting.. And neither did I.. But looking back it probably would have been good for me..
But again I was lucky to fall in-between confrontations, and was spared the experience of seeing a lot of good young men die.. What a waste..
I cannot imagine what it must have been like to be yanked out of High School and to be shipped to a totally foreign land and told to kill the other guy..
I still can't..
In any case I went off to college to become the best football player ever.. But my double major (women and alcohol) kept me from making it past the first semester..
I was clearly not ready for the academic part of college..
I got into commercial construction and a few years in, I was running work, and was a superintendent for several San Antonio general contractors..
When the mid-eighties set in, they were not even building dog houses in SA, and by a freak of luck, I started doing some repair and make ready on rental houses for a well known Realtor in San Antonio.. And that turned into almost twenty years of self employment, during which time I got my Realtor's license, which is still current today..
I was selling homes in SA when the opportunity to purchase Falcon Lake Tackle came up.
My brother and I were both fed up with driving into SA every day, so against all odds, and to the disbelief of our family and friends, we jumped out there and bought a tackle store in the middle of nowhere..
Of course we had been coming to nowhere for the last thirty five years.. In pursuit of them little green fishies..
Neither of us had any experience in retail sales.. But I think we are pretty good with people, were full of bullshit, and we knew what fishermen want.
And I'll be damned but the son of a bitch worked..
Of course we were the worlds luckiest guys to have the fishing and Falcon notoriety explode the first year we were here..
And though things have slowed, we are still here..
Thanks to all of you that have made it possible.. I had a real job before, and I like this one a lot better..
I guess you might be wondering where I have been going with mini auto-biography.
But I told this story to give credit and thanks to something that made it all possible..
America.. That's right, the Good Ole US of A..
You tell me where else an uneducated country hick could have had the opportunities that have been set before me..
And how did we get to this place and time?
You can give credit to a lot of things.
An attitude that failure would not be considered..
But at the top of that list, you damn well better put the fighting man; The soldier that laid his life on the line for your ass and mine..
From The Revolutionary War, to today's battles in the Middle East..
Nothing has changed. They're fighting for your freedom and to preserve the American way of life that we all hold so dear.
And to those of you who choose to disrespect the military and all they have done, you can kiss my ass.
And I think I can still muster enough anger to kick yours..
Like I have said before, if the shit were to really hit the fan, there will be millions of us rednecks right there beside you..
We got your back..
Here's a Budweiser commercial you might find entertaining..
Thanks for your service fellas!
God Bless you! And God Bless America! Happy Fourth of July!
June 29, 2017: June.. Considered the first month of summer.. By school kids anyway..
Already shot to hell.. Where does the time go?
I remember when I was a kid.. The days and weeks seemed to last forever. Seems like the page that said May just hit the bottom of the trash can..
We're only a little over sixty days from dove season.. Before you know it we will be filling deer feeders and cleaning ringtail shit out of deer blinds..
Man I like shooting stuff.. Yes those poor defenseless little animals.. God put em here to cut down on my grocery bill..
We been out of deer sausage for a while already.. Poor tag management..
But while it is still summer, and still hot, we will deal with it on a day to day basis.. Yesterday was a great day to fish, with low winds and cloudy skies early, and somebody even told the fish!
Cause them bastards were biting!
My buddy Gary and I headed down lake a bit and flipped a bunch of trees in three to six feet of water and we pretty much whacked the snot out of em.
We fished between marker eight and nine, and ran in and out of some shallow creeks and guts and found fish most everywhere we stopped.
Hardwoods that are hard.. Not willow trees.. Although we flipped a bunch of old willows. Even though I know they don't hold fish..
And for the life of me I can't figure why..
I ain't saying you ain't ever gonna catch one, off one.. But it is a very low percentage compared to a real hardwood. Huisache or Mesquite trees are the best thing going.. And that is not a typo.. In Texas, Mesquite is always capitalized..
The back waters of Falcon are full of willow trees, and often they are lined up just so pretty on a creek channel edge.. And they look like fish condos.. But if you were a landlord.. You'd be hurtin'..
Cause them som bitches just don't live there..
If you have been to Falcon, you know that the land down here is pretty damn flat. And we are at a level right now where a lot of flat sandy banks are being exposed.. Great for arrowhead hunting.. But not so great for surface area of the lake..
A lot of that flat ground now has sunlight on it, and it is amazing how fast it will grass over, and how fast bushes, trees and low growing plants will cover it..
I'm not sure when this thing will catch a bunch of water, but once it does, you need to have some vacation time built up.. Cause it is gonna be awesome..
Yesterday, the two old hardheaded bastards in the boat pretty much stuck to their guns, and threw what they liked.. Of course I threw the Plum Ol Monster.. And Gary threw a baby brush hog in W/M Red with chartreuse dye on the tips.
Both baits were very effective, although he caught more fish than me.. I'm blaming that on boat positioning.. Certainly not my fishing abilities..
I tried to keep count of the fish boated.. But I'm not very good at it.. We put somewhere between twenty five and thirty in the boat, and we screwed off at least a dozen.. Biggest one being between three and a half and four.. But that was an eyeball scale..
And that is launching the boat at eight, and being off the water by noon..
Lots of keepers.. Some of the fish bit like Rosie on a hot dog.. Some like Twiggy. And some like a thief in the night. So you need to be on your toes, while keeping a good grip on your rod..
I've talked about it many times before.. About how strong these fish are.. And how they like warm water and how aggressive they can be in the summer months..
And that is going on right now..
I was about to call for the net on a couple of three pounders yesterday.. They dig and dig and don't quit till you get em out of the water.. And then they'll try to bite you..
Several other boats did well the last few days from what I hear. Not a lot of giants, but some nice quality fish like we caught yesterday.
The flippin bite is on!
Next week contains the Fourth of July, and as luck would have it, this year the holiday lands on a Tuesday. I am sure a lot of you will stretch this one into a four day weekend, and who wouldn't if they could.
And while it is a little early to guess what the weather is going to be, it might be a good time to "Drive South," as John Hyatt would say..
If you need to work on your tan, this is a perfect opportunity..
Come see us..
June 26, 2017: I can't believe it has been ten days since I wrote.. But I had to deal with all the built up hostility in me..
I'm better now.. And tired..
Since I last wrote, there was a day there that I fished down south, and even launched at the state park. Which is pretty unusual for me.. But it wasn't the first time I have been there..
Robert from Amigo Inn went with me, and we decided to fish all the community holes at the mouth of Salanaias, around the dam, and at marker three on the Texas side.
And there must have been a bunch of communitarians fishing around there as of late.. Because all we caught were small fish..
It was dead calm early, and by ten we were about to melt.. Finally the wind picked up a bit.. Or we would have probably mailed it in..
We fished deep rocks, shallow rocks, and rocks that were somewhere in between.. But at all of them the kids were home alone..
We only had one good fish on, and it threw my Ol Monster back at me.. Somewhere around a five pounder.. And it came on a solitary hardwood.. And I think it was part Atlas rocket as if it would have gone any higher it would have had to go to the second stage booster..
I think the lack of a breeze didn't help us any.. I'm always bitching about the wind.. There doesn't seem to be a happy medium.. It's either on or off.. Again today it is off..
I left town last Thursday afternoon, and Tommy says it was a pretty slow weekend around here.. It is summer..
From what I have heard this morning, shallow small fish are still around rocks.. I should just paste that to my forehead..
And that is not likely to change anytime soon. The freaky part is that every thousand casts or so, you tie into a biggun right up there about knee deep..
Like I said.. I tried a bunch of deep stuff last Thursday..
I am catching as many good fish shallow as I catch deep. It may be true that I spend most of my time shallow.. But I like getting bit.. And that is where it is at right now..
The lake is falling like a rock, and we are down to 266.28. That's about ten inches in the last week. I guess the valley has a 24/7/365 irrigation plan going on, and they have raped Amistad and Falcon this year.
I guess they won't worry about water levels till the shit quits coming out of the pipe.
The ramp at the state park can't work another week at this rate, if that long.. Keep that in mind if you are headed down south.
County ramp is fine, but kinda flat.. Bridge rails on Old Veleno bridge are in the kill zone..
Stay To The West!
We have learned to make due around these parts, but it gets tiring dealing with low water all the time.. There is still a lot of lake out there, but it could be a lot bigger..
Lord we beseech you for a water event.. Of your choosing..
I did just get back from where there is a lot of water.. And I mean a lot!
I went over to Sam Rayburn over the weekend to fish the Texas Shootout put on by Bass Champs.
Matt Reed was in the shop and had mumbled something about going a few weeks back and I said that if he didn't have a partner, I had half the entry money and was good with a net..
And I needed to be as he caught four of our five weigh fish.. In my defense.. The bass were not suspended.. And I did not have enough line to reach the bottom most of the places we fished..
But having a good time is half of it, and that we did.. Thanks for the tour, Matt.
I had never been on the lake before and I will have to admit that it is a big Son Of A Bitch.. We need to start on that pipeline from east Texas to the west ASAP..
I just want the overflow.. Don't tell me it cain't be done.. What's a couple of billion these days anyway..
Would I rather have a new aircraft carrier or a pretty much endless supply of water.. Let me think about that..
In any case the lake is as healthy a looking body of water as I have ever seen.
More grass than Colorado.. Beautiful water color. Evidently great numbers of fish.. High quality boat ramps everywhere, and fantastic lakeside facilities to handle whatever events may come..
They got it going on.. Dealing with the Corps may be a pain in the ass on occasion.. But right now things are good.
Looking at Rayburn right now reminds me of Falcon in 2008.. It is fishing good.. But wait and see what's coming.. If it keeps water on that grass another couple of years.. It could get stupid..
I guess some folks already think it is..
The enormity of the lake also helps it, although I am sure the knives cut a few in half every day. And after seeing the lake, it is easier to understand how it holds up to the beating it takes every weekend.
You guys got it going on over there..
Why we opened a tackle shop in the desert I am not sure.. Well, yeah I am..
Falcon is, and always will be, my true love.. And day to day, good times or bad, this lake will still fish with any of em..
We had just under seventeen pounds of fish come quitting time, according to the Cull em Rite, and after checking early returns we turned em loose without weighing them.. As I am sure many other folks did that were in our same predicament..
Like a lot of times, one more good bite would have bought the gas money.. But like a lot of times, it didn't..
If any of you east Texas boys ain't throwing a Whopper Plopper, yer screwing up.. Them fish will come out of the grass to get em.. And I don't care what time of day either.. We had six or seven bites on em from two fifteen till two forty five with the sun shining straight down.. And we culled one..
We also missed a few on them that might have helped in the morning.. Hard to say.. If he was half as big as the splash..
We spent six hours fishing deep, and only caught one fish of importance, a six plus on a deep crank.. But it wasn't cause we were not trying..
I am sure the tourney was won out there somewhere..
They say it is beautiful country over there.. But it is hard to tell.. All you can see is trees! Around here I can see what's coming..
I killed a few mosquitoes that could stand flat footed and shit in a dump truck. But that was back in the woods..
Overall it is good to see some different country. I ran into dozens of Falcon fishermen as well and of course we had to eat at The Stump.. DO NOT order the large chicken fried steak in there either.. I don't care how hungry you are..
Glad to be home.. Gonna go whack some Falcon fish on Wednesday..
June 16, 2017: The word of the week is wind.. No.. Wait.. It is heat..
Aw shit.. It is both of em..
It has been windy and hot all week with early morning humidity heavy enough to make a mosquito wear goggles..
Yeah.. Not the most pleasant of fishing conditions.. But hell, who cares when the fish are biting..
The quality fish parade continues, with a decent number of five to seven pound fish reported by most anglers.. And there have been several nines caught this week that I have heard about as well.
But you gotta pay your dues.. Due to the aforementioned atmospheric conditions.
Not many fishermen have braved the elements down here this week. And traffic at the boat ramps confirm the same.. Plenty of parking and you are not gonna fight too many people for fishing spots..
While I am talking about ramps, I'll tell you that launching your boat on either end of the lake is still being done off concrete ramps. The state park ramp is still functional but if we loose another foot or a bit more it is gonna get pretty dicey.
The county ramp here in town is still good for a long time, but it is flatter than the panhandle..
One other item of note is the old bridge in the Veleno. It has about two feet of water over the rails, so I highly recommend that you do not drive over it. It is easily passable to the west so take my advice and get in the habit of skirting the trees on the right going out of the creek.
Speaking of the Veleno it has been cranking out some good fish as of late. A big crankbait has been the ticket for better fish off the edges of ledges. More on that in a bit.
There are squarebill fish all over the lake, on rocky points, gravel bars, and banks.
It is highly likely that you will catch fish on most anyone you pull up on. They don't have to be windblown but it helps. Bait in the water everywhere..
Lately there have been a lot of fish on hardwoods in two to six feet of water.. Some in deeper water to twelve feet off the main river channel.
Your favorite flipping bait will work but stick with the darker colors up here on the north end of the lake. The water is still off colored in the river down to marker ten.. South of that you is good to go with any thing you like.
If I were only fishing for big fish, which I rarely do, I would throw a deep diving crankbait on deep rocks, and I would probably concentrate on the south end of the lake from marker three on the Texas side back down to the dam.
This is a typical Falcon pattern in the summer. You can also drag a rig around those rocks with a big worm or fluke and catch some fish.
The big fish, for the most part, are as fat and healthy looking as I have ever seen them in the summer. I reckon the abundance of easy to catch forage is certainly making life easy for the fatties.
I caught a three pounder the other day and it barfed up a gizzard shad as big as a pillow.. Ok well maybe a big pin cushion.. But a big son of a bitch considering the size of the fish..
Like I have said, fish don't have mirrors so they have no idea how big they are.. If they can catch up with it, they'll try to eat it..
Kind of like me eating the Billy Bob's Heart Attack burger.. Three patties.. Four slices of cheese.. Six pieces of bacon.. And I always have em put a scoop of chili on it.. Shit drippin' off your elbows while you are trying to handle it.. Awesome.. Just the burger please.. No fries.. I'm trying to cut back..
I feel a gout attack coming on..
But I digress..
A few months back I posted a blurb about the CAST (Catch A Special Thrill) guide auction fund raiser that helps raise money to put on some fishing events for disabled and underprivileged kids. It's a great cause and one I am glad and proud to be associated with.
And wouldn't you know it, someone actually ponied up some money to fish with me for a day.. Some might say that their intelligence could be questioned..
But regardless of that, yesterday was the day that we hit the water. The "we" being Tully Welch and his uncle Gordon. Gentlemen in every respect and long time fishermen.
And we had a pretty good day considering the windy conditions.
We hid from the wind as best we could while fishing the Salado, the Hedieona, and the Veleno.
We probably caught thirty or thirty five fish with some nice chunky bass mixed in with the rats. We had a six or seven pounder come off the bait right at the boat, which ain't unusual.. Freakin' crankbaits..
Here's a couple of pics of very common fish around these parts.. Not monsters but some mean bastards..
Thanks guys for your generosity! I had a great time!
*** If you are offended by by strong personal opinion, and adult language, read no farther!!
Is it just me, or has the world gone bat shit crazy?
I know I live in an off the beaten path area, and quite frankly, I am pretty glad I do. You could not pay me enough to ever live in a big city, or for that matter, drive into one to make a living.
I did do it for thirty plus years, and I do not miss it a bit.. Looking back, I am not sure how I survived it.
I know that many of you live in big cities, and with the hustle and bustle of making a living, it is just something you do. And granted, for the most part, that's where the money is.
Unfortunately, that's where a majority of the loonies live..
What bothers me is that we are getting used to hearing about another murder.. Another terrorist attack.. Another plot to kill people that the perpetrators don't even know..
So much that we are becoming numb, or or just accepting that this is just a fact of life in today's world.
Which is total horseshit..
As an individual, I am not sure what we can do to change it..
Whatever side of the aisle you are on, can you tell me something that is so bad politically, that it would cause you to go out and shoot someone.. Or a bunch of people?
I understand someone getting upset with government policy's.. I think a lot of it is over-reaching.. Too much control in the hands of people that probably have no idea of what working for a living is.
Fact is that most politicians have a silver spoon up their ass and have been eating at the government trough for way too long.
It ain't gonna be easy to fix..
Of course I am referring to the lunatic that decided to go Republican hunting up in that quagmire that surrounds washington D.C.
And immediately the anti-gunners came out of the woodwork saying that this was caused by the availability of firearms to the general public.
Let's think about this for a minute..
If all guns were outlawed in the US, would the Secret Service quit carrying guns?
Would all of our law enforcement quit carrying guns?
Would access to guns on the street evaporate?
Would someone who really wanted a gun not be able to get one?
If the US government outlawed firearms tomorrow, and said you had to turn in all guns by the end of the month, do you reckon the criminals and folks that are already prohibited from having guns would bring em right in?
If they did a house to house search, do you think they would find them all?
Point being, that you will NEVER, NEVER get rid of guns in America.
And if you can never get rid of all the guns in America, then you will never keep a bad guy from getting a gun.
But it makes too much sense to believe that.
I watched one of them fat bitches on TV say that there is no reason for an individual to have a gun for personal protection. And that in the event of an "active shooter," how do the police know who the good or bad guy is at the scene if an individual is using his gun to stop the criminal?
And I guess this is out of concern for the guy that is trying to defend himself.. To keep himself and his family and or friends alive..
It would be terrible to see him get shot by the police..
Horseshit.. If it ain't you, why would you give a shit if another person was trying to put a stop to the deadly situation?
You ain't gonna be the one getting shot by the police..
I ain't dying curled up in the fetal position, shitting my pants and hoping that he skips over me..
So mind your own fucking business, be a victim if that is what you choose, and let the rest of us take the risk of defending ourselves..
Let me see.. If some son of a bitch is shooting at me, do I want the option of shooting back.. Or just say, "Here I come, Lord.."
It's not like the police are following me around to immediately take care of any and all threats..
What the hell am I supposed to do while this bastard is killing innocent people while waiting for who knows how long for law enforcement to appear? Knowing I may be next on the list?
As Mrs. Gump said, "Stupid is as stupid does.."
And these talking heads are so far out of touch, and live so far away from the reality of the common man, and have their heads so far up their ass, that they don't have a fucking clue as to how life works for the rest of us.
So they can all kiss my ass..
Give all your money to charity, rent an apartment on the lower east side, and get you a $15 an hour job and tell me how safe you feel..
With all the security that income allows..
Until you do that, you're all nothing but a bunch of fucking hypocrites..
June 12, 2017: It was a busy weekend around here.. At least for me.. And it was a little busy on the water as well..
Last weekend saw the annual API tournament here on Falcon that fielded about forty five teams.
Uvalde Bass Club was here, and so was Helotes Bass Club and San Antonio Hog Hunters Bass Club.
So we had a few folks in and out the door..
Good to see all of you!
Of course I was doing the weigh in over at Beacon for the API.. So that took up a lot of my afternoons on Saturday and Sunday.
There were a lot of good fish weighed both days, but Saturdays results were surely better than Sundays.. Kinda typical for a two day tourney.. But Sundays results weren't too bad..
On Saturday there were three stringers over twenty pounds.. On Sunday only one..
And while I did weigh all the fish, I did not get the final results down to the ounces..
At least not yet..
First place had over thirty eight pounds.. Second had over thirty five, and third over thirty four..
That's pretty damn good weights for anytime or anywhere..
And if you haven't done the math on the top weight, that's about a 6.33 pound average.. Over two days..
I also weighed a lot of sacks with a really nice kicker fish in the bag. I saw a lot of six and seven pound fish.
Tough part about fishing a tournament here on Falcon is that you need several kicker fish a day.. If you're gonna win..
I talked to a lot of folks that fished of course, and a major part of the big fish picture was big crankbaits. Some folks fished down south, and some fished here in the Veleno.
Clearer water seemed to be key to catching some big fish I hear. And ledges and humps were instrumental in finding more than one good fish.
I'll post the names and exact weights of the top teams when I get em..
I did not get a lot of reports from the clubs but I do know that there were several good fish caught by club fishermen as well, including a nine plus.
Last Thursday I fished with a buddy in the Salado and the Hedieona, and we caught them pretty good.
Keep in mind that if you do go to the Hedieona, there are a lot of hazards to contend with.. Mostly unseen woods.
You know that big old bridge support in the middle of the river up there? I have finally figured out why it was never taken out..
In architecture, going even as far back as medieval times, gargoyles were put on buildings and walls to warn, or scare off anyone that didn't belong to, or know the area or compound they were approaching..
In days of old if you disregarded a gargoyle, you might get your head chopped off..
If you disregard this one, you might get your lower unit chopped off..
Familiarity is everything, so if you know the turf then you can still get up there and catch some fish.
But you do need to proceed with caution when you get past the Salado a bit..
And certainly pay attention to the Gargoyle Of The Rio Grande..
Anyway I was telling you that we were fishing last Thursday and we caught a bunch of fish..
I know that you think I am crazy, (conceivably so) but I believe we had a small group of fish spawn last week on the moon and with the rising water..
It happened last year big time and this phenomenon is well documented down here.. A summer spawn is not at all uncommon in these parts..
Case in Point..
We were running a bank that we have fished a million (hundred) times in the past in the back half of the Salado. And I chunked a bait (Plum Ol MOnster) at an underwater stump you could just see the top of in about two and a half feet of water.
Well the bait hardly got wet and about a two pounder had my worm and hauled ass with it. I didn't get him stuck good and he jumped and threw the hook.. It was a long cast and I wrote it off to who cares anyway..
But I re-rigged my bait and made an even longer cast back to the stump and got bit again.. And when I set the hook this time I knowed it wadn't no two pounder..
I couldn't move her at all at first and I knew I had a good one on and hollered for the net. And after a minute we got her in the boat and she weighed 9-1..
I have the worlds worst picture of that fish which I will not include.. But this fish had a belly like a Buda..
Being we have been talking of statues..
I am sure this fish was up there to spawn, just like several big fish that I heard about last week that were caught in knee deep water. One of them a twelve plus.. With a Rosiesque belly.
In Rosie's case I am glad it is just blubber.. Can you imagine how many eggs that thing might hold?
Hopefully she won't ever spawn.. Cause we sure don't need another one.. You know what they say.. The calf don't fall far from the cow..
Or something like that.. But I digress..
In any case I was back there yesterday and the rocks adjacent to the stump where I caught that fish had a big school of fry hanging out in the shade.. They were too damn little to know exactly what they were.
But I got a good idea..
In any case the fishing down here has been pretty damn good this last week. As was proven by a lot of fishermen that wore em out over the weekend.
Granted, a lot of these boys fish here a lot and are excellent anglers. But even I have been catching some good ones here lately, so you certainly have a chance to catch em as well.
It is getting Summer time around here so keep that
in mind if you decide to venture down.
Other than that, it is all good..
Come see us!
June 9, 2017: Well.. This is just an API tourney update..
No long rambling fishing report.. But a pretty good looking result sheet..
As a matter of fact I don't think you can do this anywhere else in June.. Or anytime for that matter..
Well Maybe. But I have seen it here a lot of times.. And this was with a forty five team tournament..
After day one:
1st THREE fish for 23.89
2nd THREE fish for 22.08
3rd Three fish for 20.45
Big Bass was not caught by any of the top three.. It was a 10.61
Neither was second big bass.. Which was a 9.72..
I weighed em all and there was a lot of six and seven pound fish in the mix..
I'd say Falcon is fishing pretty freakin good..
Even I caught a nine-one on Thursday.. (I'm on a mini hot streak..)
Am I bragging about Falcon?
Well.. Maybe.. A little..
See you later..
June 6, 2017: Well for all the bitching about wind I have been doing the last two months, I'll have to retract it for the last two weeks.. It has been really nice around here as of late..
And not too damn hot, with all the scattered rain showers that have been around. We did collect another quarter inch last weekend.. And thunderstorms have been surrounding us here as of late.. But it looks like a dryer and hotter period coming our way this week.
Last weekend we had a few little tournaments in town. We had the monthly group out of Laredo, Ingram bass club, and Alamo bass club from San Antonio.
Several eight pound fish were caught, and one ten I hear form the Laredo group. I did not hear exact final weights from anybody but I believe that Ingram's top two day stringer was about 30 pounds..
Not stellar but decent I reckon..
I was at the boat ramp yesterday, and there were several dead fish on the bank and floating around the area.
Which pisses me off..
It is summertime folks.. You have to take care of your fish.. And sometimes you have to eat em..
And leaving a struggling fish to float around the dock is inexcusable..
It is bad enough to kill one, but to waste it is even worse..
Enough said.. But promise me you will do better..
So keep that in mind all of you who are going to fish the API this weekend.
The water is hot and you must take care of your fish. I will be doing fish care at the weigh in, but I can't save em if you bring em in on life support..
You should be able to keep three fish alive in two livewells..
I know there are exceptions to the rules, but please do your best..
Speaking of the API, registration will be at Beacon on Thursday evening.. Calcutta to follow.. See you there..
I have been writing the same thing for months when it comes to the fishing report.. Or so it seems.
You could say that nothing has changed.. Or fishing is consistent.. Or the report is redundant.. And most all of that is true.
But the fact is that the fishing is pretty decent, day to day.
And it is hot down here.. That is also a fact..
The flipping bite remains pretty decent, with the usual summer pattern of hardwoods and shade..
When the sun is out and it is past ten o'clock, these fish will be on the woods, and 90% of the time on the shady side of the trees.
A senko or a craw or a big worm can certainly get you bit in about four to six feet of water in the lumber..
There are quite a few keeper fish in the mix, but I have not caught any giants flipping the woods lately.. And I have certainly caught or missed plenty of short fish, a bunch of which have eaten the back half of my Ol Monster..
I reckon them ain't too damn big..
The offshore bite is hit and miss, but better fish are still coming on big crankbaits and now and then a jig.
Old rockpiles and foundations in twelve to twenty feet of water can produce some decent fish. Even the shallow rock piles have fish on them, especially early..
A super fluke on a shakey head or wobble head did real well on the rocks last weekend.
The water is slowly clearing on the top end of the lake, but you need to get past marker ten before you see some green. I am sure there are still plenty of fish in the off colored water, but from what I have seen, there are not a lot of boats fishing in it..
And neither am I..
The lake has come up a bit the last week, and the ramp at the state park is working fine, although it is still down to the middle lane. We are sitting at 268.42, or 32.78 feet low.
The county ramp is a bit flat, and the west side of is has some silt on top of it, but it is still working fine.. Use the east side if you can..
Sunday I fished with a buddy and we caught some flipping fish, but kind of struck out on deep rocks. We were close to the Tigers and were fishing some brush piles, and once we picked up the crappie poles, it was over..
Those things are stacked on them brushpiles down there. If you want to go crappie fishing, give me a call and I'll hook you up with a guide that will put you on em..
Yesterday I went gar hunting/shooting/killing.. And man this lake has got em.. Those SOB's are thick back in some creeks.. We never missed one we should have hit.. But there were tons of em rolling around us.. Just not staying up long.. You had to be quick..
We saw a lot of five and six footers.. But the biggest we killed was about five foot two..
Damn that is a lot of fun..
And there ain't much prettier than a pile of dead gar..
Oh I guess you could improve the picture with a few dozen dead cormorants laying around them..
Oh.. And a girl in a bikini top with big hooters holding a bow in the background..
Yeah that couldn't hurt..
So you can see I have been pretty busy.. Screwing off.. But I was on, for five straight days last week..
This week several good fish were caught, including these two. Here's a couple of personal bests..
Wade caught this 8.59..
And George Cabassos caught this 12.56.. That's a whopper!
That's the biggest fish I have heard of in a while.. Good to know we still have a few of them around..
You know I am always taking about people fishing the hump at the dam/gates, and I was going through some old pics and found this.. And I can't remember if this is one of my pictures or if somebody gave it to me..
But I certainly fished around it back when the lake was this low.. Circa 2002..
So you see what I have been talking about all these years..
I hope I never see this thing again.. But we'll see.. Or we won't..
In any case, it is all good down here in these parts..
Come see us.. We have sombreros and sunscreen in stock..
Oh.. And we have some fish in stock as well..
May 30, 2017: The three day weekend has ended.. And we had some great weather and some windy and some hot and then some nice..
And on Sunday night we had some real thunderstorms that dropped about 1.85 inches of rain here at the shop..
And don't look now but I think they may have really backed off the water releases.. But it might be a little early to tell..
The valley got a lot of the same rain as we did.. It has been a tough year for lake levels here, and at Amistad.. We are both about 33 feet low..
Fishing has been good and fair depending on who you ask.. I think it has been really good for numbers if you happen on the right spot. There are some schools of fish that are huge.. The fish in those schools are not big for the most part..
But if you keep your worm wet, you can usually run into a decent fish or two.
I caught a 8-4 on Sunday morning, mixed in with a dozen or so fish in a few hours.. And while my face on this page is not too common, and for good reason, at least not holding a big fish, here's a selfie of the fat bitch..
One of us looks pretty good..
On Saturday Rhonda Kossub caught this 9.93, a new personal best for her and a fine looking fish it was..
The Atascosa Bass Club was in town for a two day tourney, and on Saturday they had two fish over eight pounds weighed in. Heavy stringers were in the sixteen pound range, so it appears that numbers of big fish were hard to come by.
As has been the norm here lately..
Similar results have been reported by most folks that have been down. Although there have not been a lot of people fishing here lately. But the three day weekend did bring out a few more than we have seen as of late.
The API tournament is coming up weekend after next, that is June 9-10. It will be headquartered over at Beacon Lodge.
It is important to note that fishing days of this suaree will be on Friday and Saturday. Registration will be on Thursday evening.
This tourney raises monies for scholarships for area youth, and it will be a three day party of sorts..
For more information, call Robert Chavez at 830-876-6129.
Fish are being caught on every conceivable bait around here, from shakey heads to big crankbaits. The big fish I caught on Sunday came on a jerkbait.. Go figure.. I caught several fish on it for whatever it is worth..
The flipping bite has been pretty good for me. I have been concentrating on hardwoods in four to eight feet of water, and some fish shallower..
And I am sure you think it is all I throw, but the Plum Ol Monster is a great choice in them woods.. That son of a bitch catches fish..
Pay attention to your line as a lot of these fish are pretty damn sneaky..
Well about the time I got to here with this report, a notion came to me, and a buddy said he wanted to go catch some crappie..
That was about five hours ago.. We went out and caught thirty four, which is all or more than I care to clean..
It appears that there are a lot of crappie in this here lake..
Whatever you are chasing, you can pretty much catch it here.. (Within reason..)
If you are looking, you might catch some shit you don't want.. But I am way too old to worry much about that..
If you can stand a little heat, and you find a few off days coinciding with some low wind days.. You might want to come on down and beat on a few..
I think you'll find the fish cooperative..
And if you want to catch a few crappie there are some guides here that can put you on a bunch of em..
And if you want to catch some bass, the same can be said..
Of course it is pretty easy to catch em on your own..
But them guides can save you some search time..
Holler at me if you have any questions or comments..
And come see us if you can..
May 25, 2017: May has come.. And damn near gone.. The local kids last day of school is tomorrow.. Time's a flying by..
Memorial day is this Monday, and I reckon it is the traditional start of summer. Although summer usually starts about February around here..
But today.. Magnifique!! Low winds and highs in the eighties..
I fished Monday and Tuesday.. And whacked em both days..
On Monday I fished for bass, and tore them a new asshole.. Yesterday we went and caught a mess of crappie, (32) which is more than I like to clean.. Just had some for lunch..
That shit is hard to beat..
On Monday I fished nothing but hardwoods close to marker eight.. Back in some pockets that had four to six feet of water.. Oh I fished plenty of deeper and shallower..
But after a bit it was obvious where the fish were.
Twice I caught three fish out of the same tree.. Or limb. Single stickups were just as good as a big hardwood it seemed.
It was all about depth.. Well depth and woods..
If there was anything in particular that was better, it was always the tips of points or mini points or the end of a tree line. I can't count the times that I have caught fish on the last tree showing on a point or ridge termination..
And these can be very subtle.. If one tree sticks out of a line of trees a bit farther than the rest.. Fish it twice as hard.. That thing has fish in it..
Tips of points kind of scream, "Look at me!" anyway..
I think that's why God put nipples on the ends of breasts..
Well that and the ability for women to suckle their young..
But I figure I am just paying attention to nature in both cases..
I wonder if there is a correlation between fishermen who like to fish points and fishermen who were breastfed?
But I'll have to save that discussion for a later time..
Anyway.. The water in that part of the lake is off-colored so I decided to throw a Plum Ol Monster (Hereafter referred to as a POM).
And they would hit it like a speed bag.. And I caught a few.. But half of them were biting the tail off..
I know what you are thinking.. But these fish were almost all.. Ok, half of them were keepers..
But after the second time I got back a senko after I threw a POM, I decided to switch to a Rage Craw.. And they ate it like a schoolgirl.. (Should I leave that..?? Yeah shit, they're used to it...)
Anyway.. I had a pack and used them all up.. W/M Red.. And then I found another pack that was opened and didn't have all the coffee funk as good as the new ones.. So I put some Smelly Jelly on em and they liked em better yet.. (Garlic)
If you have never used Smelly Jelly then you don't know what you are missing.
It is kinda like using that pheromone spray that was around in the seventies.. Walk into a disco with that shit slathered on you and...
Not that I needed the help.. I was just using it for overflow for my buddies...
But when it comes to fishing, I need all the help I can get.. And that stuff is lightning in a bottle.. Try it sometime.. And no I don't get any for free.. But it is a great product..
Anyway I caught a couple dozen fish or more in a hour period once I figured em out. And I took the idea to another creek and it was the same there.. For whatever it is worth..
I was at the dam yesterday morning, and for a Tuesday I would say it was pretty busy..
Some folks catching crappie the the Mexican outlet.. Some folks catching white bass at the American outlet.. And four or five boats bass fishing on the riprap and humps..
And I saw a few fish caught..
We caught a few crappie on the concrete, but I did not like the way the weather was looking so we headed back towards Zapata a bit and stopped in the Tigers..
Where we caught the majority of our crappie off two deep brush piles.. And some nice ones too..
Falcon has gone crappie crazy this year.. From top to bottom.. Real crappie fishermen have been tearing them up..
I have heard a good many reports the last few days from other fishermen that have caught a ton of bass as well..
Now a lot of these are small, but there are more and more fifteen to eighteen inch fish showing up.
Where are all the fifteen to eighteen inch fish we caught last year?? You tell me..
The only cover we have in the lake is hardwoods and a few fine sticks on very flat banks. And manmade brush piles here and there.. And they are magnets with no dense brush in the water..
I guess you can call a rocky ledge cover.. But it really ain't.. We need water!
We did get 2.15 inches of rain on Sunday night, and some areas on the river above us got a lot more.. If we would close the gates we might have caught some water.. We'll probably catch eight inches or so.. If we hold it..
Top of the lake is dirty.. Clears up about marker nine.. But creeks off the main river are very fishable.. And they're full of biting fish..
We did chunk for bass a bit yesterday on some rocky flats and points.. And we caught a few.. But we was off to crappieland and we did not try too hard..
Squarebills are still catching a lot of fish.. Sexy Shad is the best color.. But anything with a chartreuse stripe can catch fish.
Deep cranks down south are still catching fish.. At a slow pace.. But you can catch a whopper doing it..
I don't even slam my thumb in the door on purpose anymore, so I rarely throw a deep diver more than a few casts.. They better eat it quick if I am gonna keep throwing it..
The usual suspects are still working.. We got em.. Come and get em..
This weekend is Memorial weekend, and I hope you will take a bit of time to remember the things that were done on your behalf, (whether you have the sense to appreciate it or not) or maybe done in spite of your dumb ass, in an effort to provide the freedom that you enjoy here in the Good Ole USA.
For the thousands that paid the ultimate price, I have no words that can come close to thanking you and your families..
And nothing pisses me off worse than someone disrespecting our men in uniform, the memory of those that served and died, or the folks that served and are still with us today.
Nobody wants to go to war.. But sometimes in the course of human events it cannot be avoided.. If you want to be free..
And that's the side I am on..
And if it ever came to it I would gladly and proudly stand beside you guys today..
I don't think I could make it thru Ranger training anymore.. But you might be surprised what I could hit downrange..
Thanks to all of you and God Bless you..
Happy Memorial Day! And don't forget to Thank A Soldier!
May 18, 2017: Well I hope you folks had a good Mothers Day, and you got to spend some time with your family.. We sure did and I got back into town on Tuesday.
Yesterday was a great day to fish, but I had doctors appointment in the AM and it was too damn hot to go when I got back. Even though the wind was minimal, I still wussed out..
Old age sucks.. Today the wind is back. And I ain't that mad at em..
I think that I could just copy and paste the fishing report.. It has been good for numbers, but big fish are still spotty..
Yesterday however, a young man was down here with his family and on his first cast ever on Falcon he caught an 8-2..
A little luck never hurt nobody.
Shallow fish in big numbers have been all over rocky points from Pierce's to the dam. Marker three and south on the Texas side is s good place to start.
All those rocky windblown points can have fish on em.. Including the point just leaving the state park. There are a ton of little fish on some of them.
Rattle Traps and square bills are a pretty sure bet on these fish.
On the upper end of the lake, a lot of fish have been in the hardwoods along the river channel on the Mexican side. Across from the Veleno, working your way south to the windmill farmhouse, and all the way into Blanco.
I am sure there are some fish in the Coyotes, but I have not check on them lately or heard from anyone that has fished them.
But if you will remember a few years back when we got to this level, there were lot of fish out in front of Coyote in those hardwoods.
That spot is on my to do list..
Senkos have been good in the trees.. So have baby brush hogs and that damn Plum Ol Monster.. Try a Junebug Red BBH in those trees.. Especially in the darker water.. But any dark flippin bait like the Pit Boss or the Rage Craw will work up here..
Releases from Amistad have slowed substantially, while we are still letting out a bit more than we are getting.
Amistad is now 33 feet low, and we are right in that same vicinity.
Pray for rain..
TPWD put the last of our fingerlings in yesterday, with a final load of about 180,000. These went into the Tigers and I believe this puts us at about 425,000 for the year.. Or somewhere close..
I just wish they had somewhere to hide.
Last week of course we scattered the fish from La Perla and after talking to all involved I'll have to say that it went about as well as it could. And I don't mean to say anything went bad at all.
As Colonel Potter would say, "There ain't enough o's in smooth," to describe the way the operation went.
Thanks again to all involved..
Remember the fish kill that occurred in the Veleno last year? Well we have made some progress on what's going to be done as a peace offering on that.
I'll spare you the details on the estimates of what was killed, which left off a few species on the actual report. And that was from my personal observation.
But the road contractor, Anderson Columbia, has volunteered to do some work for us down at the county park.
And I think it will be a great improvement to the little used facility that we have there.
Anderson Columbia is going to donate materials and labor to build a paved road that will wrap around the giant pavilion that we have at the top of the parking lot.
Hopefully we will be able to set up the larger tournaments under there, as much improved access and "Drive-Thru" ability for weigh-ins should be made easy.
It would sure be nice to be able to sit in the shade, without being sandblasted, and watch a weigh in. We are also working on some seating for these events in the form of some bleachers or chairs that will stay on site.
Funding for that will come from a different source still to be determined.
And it will be much easier for the tournament organizers as they will have no need, other than advertising, to set up pop ups and/or other shade providing devices.
Bathrooms are just a short walk away and I don't think anybody will miss the Porta-Potties..
Of course good lighting and water are already on sight, as is electricity.
This is gonna be a good deal..
Thanks Anderson Columbia for your generosity..
If you come to Falcon any time soon, you may run into the Coast Guard at the boat ramp or out on the lake riding with the Border Patrol.
Why the hell they are here nobody knows, other than typical government waste of taxpayer money.
Be sure and watch out for the huge wakes from the Coast Guard Cutters on the lake.. (Sarcasm)
For whatever reason, but mainly due to lack of diligence on the part of the federal government, the Rio Grande is still considered a navigable water way because it connects with the Gulf of Mexico.
If you can sail your dinghy up from Brownsville I will eat your hat.
And being deemed "Navigable" gives the Coast Guard authority to assert maritime laws on an inland lake a hundred and fifty miles from any salt water.
Which is total bullshit..
Anyway the Coast Guard has a right to remove your fourth amendment right whenever they please. That means they can search your boat anytime it is on the water without permission from you, and without probable cause or a warrant.
Whenever they feel like it. Locked compartments are not protected. Nor is your wife's pantie drawer if you have one on your boat.
This too is a crock of shit, but it has been going on for over a hundred years.
Now don't get me wrong. I am doing NOTHING illegal when I am on the water and I am sure you are not either. And I will gladly agree to show all safety equipment and documentation that the state requires to be present on my boat.
But the manner that the Coast Guard goes about inspections, and hassles fishermen is in serious need of rethinking.
First of all we have TPWD enforcing all state laws on the lake. We have every law enforcement agency known to man here in Zapata, on and off the lake.
And to add another layer of inspections is just a bunch of shit.
Here are a few things that have happened to boaters in the last couple of weeks..
Re-inspection. Regardless of whether you have the yellow "get out of jail" slip from your last inspection a few days ago..
One officer dropped the fisherman's drivers license in the water during an inspection.. Well that will fuck up an afternoon..
Two different fishermen were asked three times during the inspection whether they had a gun in the boat or not.
Several fishermen told me that the officers stepped in their boat with mud on their shoes and tracked it all over their boat during their "Inspection."
Texans are pretty easy going people, but you cannot blame them for resenting the intrusion, waste of thirty minutes, and the inconsiderate treatment of their property.
This stuff needs to be changed. And the Coast Guard should be guarding the coast.
Now don't get me wrong.. If the Coasties wanted to set up an office here, put some resources in place, and be on duty to help people in distress out on the water, we would all welcome them with open arms.
Heaven knows I have towed in a lot of folks and made arrangements for their safe and timely return. Or done the best I can, and so have many others in this community.
This is basically taxation without representation.. Or you could say it's all downside.. No upside to their presence.
All we are getting for our money is a hassle..
So say I am wrong.. We need the CG here.. They are cost effective and are making us safer on the water and our recreation time more enjoyable..
If that is what you think.. I would love to hear your opinions and reasoning..
But don't be e-mailing me no weak bullshit..
See you on the water.. After I get my prop shaft fixed.. And the Federales leave town..
May 13, 2017: It was a slow week around here.. Well kinda.. It always is.. Till it ain't..
The wind blew.. And didn't.. And we had a couple of decent days to fish and a few that kept most folks on the bank..
This has certainly been a strange year for late north winds.. And we had another one yesterday.. A fairly stiff north wind and temps nearing 100.. Strange indeed..
And while the middle of the country has major flooding, we are in a low water condition that can only be cured by Divine intervention..
I'm officially asking Lord.. We need a flood..
Not quite that thirty days and nights type.. But the kind that makes the news..
Fishing has been pretty decent this week, and a buddy and I whacked em pretty good on Thursday morning, before we went crappie fishing.. Which was also pretty good..
We caught most of our fish on square bills in Sexy Shad pattern.. Shallow.. Best fish was about a four pounder on a spinnerbait..
It's still all about rocks down here.. When ain't it..
People keep asking me about big fish.. Well I ain't catching a bunch of em..
But the reoccurring theme is that the better fish are down south.. And I don't spend much time down there..
I did see the dam the other day.. But it was still eight miles away..
The lake is still dropping, though it has slowed a bit.. There is about three foot of water over the bridge rails here in the Veleno..
So get in the habit of running to the west going in and out of the Veleno.. We have about two feet of water to go before the state park ramp becomes un useable..
We are sitting at 267.76 this AM..
I have been talking about a little project that we have been working on with TPWD and Dr. Schwartz up at La Perla Ranch..
You remember.. The contract lake that was stocked with Sharelunker fingerlings about three years ago..
Anyway if you have been following along you knew that we planned to move a bunch of fish from La Perla to Falcon, to keep the lake that these fish have been living in from getting over crowded.. These are first and second generation Sharelunker offspring.
All of this under the supervision of TPWD.
Collection of the fish by electro shocking commenced on Thursday evening, and by noon on Friday they had collected 1000 fish (+-) to be moved to Falcon.
These fish were transferred to PAW trailers and delivered to the county ramp here in Zapata to be distributed via boats, by PAW personnel and by volunteers who on their own time and dime, came out to help distribute the fish. Away from the local shores and the buzz of electric knives.
And I'd like to say that it went very well.. With fish being spread out from Hedieona to the Tigers..
And once we got in a rhythm, after getting all the boats loaded up the first time, with boats going and coming, it went awesome..
The guys from the San Antonio PAW office brought some extra oxygen rigs that we set up on several boats that were going to run some long distances.. And it worked great. And out of the thousand or so fish, I saw one dead one..
These fish were from eight inches to fifteen inches long, and I'd say that 10 to 15 percent of the fish were already keeper sized.. That's just my guess from what I saw..
But they looked great.. And were jacked up and should have an excellent chance of survival..
I'd like to personally thank all of the volunteers that helped spread the fish..
Paul .. Zapata Texas
Charles Parchman.. Georgetown, Texas
John Mireles, Roma, Texas
Calvin Snyder.. Roma, Texas.. Previously long term manager of Falcon Lake State Park..
Robert and Robyn McFarlane.. Zapata Texas.. Of R&R Guide Service..
Robert and Susan Reissig.. Zapata, Texas.. Amigo Inn and Amigo Guide Service..
Matt Simms.. Laredo, Texas.. Sims Construction
Tommy Moose.. Fredericksburg, Texas..
All of these boats made three trips at least, and the PAW boat with a big water tank made several trips as well, but did not run near as far as the speedier bass boats..
I'd say that overall it could not have gone too much better..
Except for me hitting a stump coming out of Hedieona and bending my prop shaft..
Dammit.. That's gonna cost me.. Be careful if you go that far north.. It is getting ugly up there..
Thanks to Dr. Gary and PAW for making this happen..
You can say it will or won't make a difference..
But it sure as hell cain't hurt.. I think it's awesome!!
Thanks to all involved!!!
Enjoy your weekend, and
HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY! to all you mothers out there!
See you later.. Now go call your Mama...
May 8, 2017: I think March has resurfaced around here.. Or maybe it never left..
The wind has been brutal.. And is supposed to be the next three days as well. Yikes!!
It's not supposed to be this hard to go fishing..
I just realized that I have not posted in a week, and I'll admit that I have been fishing a few times in the last seven days.. Like three..
And I have been catching fish pretty darn good.. Big fish you ask?
Well not really.. But I have been fishing for fish in water that is a little protected.. Somewhat anyway.
Last Thursday however, was one of those rare days where you could go where you wanted to go, and fish where you wanted to fish.
I fished my way down to the Tigers, with intentions to fish the dam. But I never made it..
I caught fish mostly shallow, (I guess if all you fish is shallow then that's what's going to happen) and mostly on squarebills.. Cause they have been eating the crap out of those things here lately.
The 2.5 in Sexy Shad and in Black Back Chartruse have been the best for me.. Whatever you throw, it has to have a bit of chartruse on it. Or at least it don't hurt.
I have been catching a lot of keepers, but a five fish limit of these usually won't make thirteen pounds.
But I like getting bit, and I feel like an over-achiever here lately.
Where the hell are all those two and three pounders I caught last spring?
Anyway, on Thursday when I was in the Tigers, I drove past a couple of brush piles with the side scan turned on.. Those things were lit up like a Christmas tree.
Which made me put down the bass rods and pick up a crappie rig..
I could have caught all I wanted, but I came home with eighteen nice ones.. And threw back a bunch of chiquitos..
Big fun and damn fine eating..
I also fished last Tuesday, and I ended up in the Salado out of self defense.. And after a bit I found some of the better fish I have caught lately on hardwoods in four to five feet of water. Of course there are still plenty of small fry on the rocks in there. And I dare you to not find a windblown gravel point.
Most of my flipping fish have come on a Plum Ol Monster as of late.. I love that bait..
Don't leave home without it..
On Saturday the annual Starr County reunion tournament was held. These guys get together once a year and Bar-B-Que and drink beer.. Oh and they fish too.
There were eleven or twelve teams entered and an eighteen plus pound stinger took top honors. That's three fish.. Pretty salty..
The winning stringer came off the dam.. On spinnerbaits.. Go figure..
Second and third were sixteen and fourteen pound bags.. And from what I hear most of the fellers caught their fish near the dam..
I guess most of the fish have been sucked up against the dam.. Lord knows there is enough water going through it.. It's getting ugly out there in some areas..
We're at 268.25 today and dropping like a rock.. That's 32.77 feet low.
That's down 1.76 feet since the 15th of last month.. Yeah, they're still sucking water like it's March.. Where it'll stop, who really knows..
If you're looking to fish a bass tourney down here, let me remind you that the API tourney is less than a month away.
It will be an open team tourney so anyone can fish it.
It will be held June 9th and 10th and it will go out of Beacon Lodge..
Contact Robert Chavez at 830-876-6129 for more details..
The alligator gar are getting more active, and some big ones have been taken lately. I have heard of several over six feet in the last ten days, and sightings of some monsters..
There are some big son of a bitches out there..
Crappie are still being caught by the boatload.. If you can find a day to fish em..
White bass have been stacked up in front of the dam near the outlet to generators, inside the bouys. Every cast.
We're still on for stocking the bass from La Perla this Friday, and I have some good help lined up.. Long as all goes as planned we'll be scattering out some good brood stock to a lot of areas of the lake.
And during the last week another 80,000 Florida Fingerlings were put in the lake down south. We still have more to come. But it doesn't look like we will be adding any cover for em before they get here..
Survivability this year is going to be lower than usual.. But it is what it is..
Ramps at both ends are still fine, but if we lose another three feet we will be off the state park ramp.. Somewhere around 265.50 things start to get pretty dicey down there..
Running the lake is no problem, but just look out for scattered hardwoods if you are out of the river channel.
The catching is good, if you can find a time with bearable winds..
Come see us.. You'll have lots of room..
May 1, 2017: Happy May Day to all of you Spring lovers...
If you are actually working, instead of out protesting something you know nothing about.... Well Congratulations..
You're on the right team..
It was another windy weekend around here.. Seems we can't get a break when it comes to the wind.
There were a few folks out on the water, and they had mixed results.
The big fish that are being caught are still coming down south.. Or so it appears..
Cankbaits on rocks.. Probably be the same story tomorrow..
Up here on the north end it is still windblown points and rocks.. Laydowns.. And pitching at whatever wood is still in the water.. Darker baits in the darker water..
And we are having less water every day..
Amistad has slowed the releases.. I'm waiting to see if we will too.. I hope this cycle is about over..
I have been hinting lately about something that is coming up here at Falcon. And here's the scoop..
Remember a couple of years ago when PAW put a bunch of Sharelunker fish in the new lake up at La Perla, owned by Dr. Schwartz?
And a big deal was made of it at the time.. And rightly so.
I was one that offered opinion on the subject as well. But mostly because of the lack of transparency by PAW about the issue..
I am sure that SL fish have ended up in private waters here in Texas before..
But that's another story..
But here's what is going to happen, if all goes as planned.
What's the one thing that a biologist will tell you when you are trying to grow big fish in a pond, or small lake?
Well if you don't know, the answer is, "Take out a bunch of the small fish."
And that is the plan. And instead of running a fillet knife thru em, Dr. Schwartz has decided to return these fish to TPWD, and TPWD will then put these fish into Falcon Lake..
This agreement did not happen over night.
I am sure a lot of thought by PAW was put into the decision to accept the fish, and a lot of thought was given to the optics of the situation.
Of course when I talked to Dr. Schwartz about a month or so ago, I was all ears.. And I was/am chomping at the bit to receive 1000 to 1200 cormorant proof (for the most part) fish for Falcon.
Which should be a very high percentage of pure Florida Bass. Very High.. And I just say that because I don't believe in very many absolutes..
What should happen here is that survival rates will go from 2-5%, more or less, to.. Well hell I don't know..
Once a fish weighs a pound or so, there are only a few things that can cause his death.. Least around here..
A very few end up in nets..
A few end up as gar food..
And a few end up eaten by anglers, and killed by anglers with poor live well etiquette..
AKA tournament mortality..
But the odds are that a very good number of SL bred fish, that have made it past the most dangerous period of their entire existence, are going to be put into Falcon.
Odds are that fish larger than that will also be collected. We'll see when we open the doors on the stocking trucks provided by PAW to move the fish from the ranch to Zapata.
Dr. Schwartz is paying for the collection of the fish from the lake at the ranch. This is no small cost.. Thank you Gary!
I am glad that Dr. Schwartz and PAW made this decision. It is definitely a good PR move on their part.
Thanks PAW for making the right choice.
It is a win-win for Falcon. And I don't care what people on other lakes think..
Hauling bigger fish to other locations is a logistics nightmare, and who knows about the survival rate..
This is a NO Brainer...
SO.. Knowing the fish eating habits of the locals..
I had the idea to use boats other than PAW's to distribute some/most/a lot of these fish. Namely, Bass Boats..
Although PAW will be bringing their stocking boat out of San Antonio.
But their design, which does allow them to hold a lot of water, does not allow for much long range transport while getting the job done in a timely manner.
And hopefully we will have a good number of fish to move.
If we dump them all here in the Veleno, the locals will be running a fillet knife through a very high percentage of the ones they catch
So we need your help. If you are interested in helping distribute some fish, on your own dime, please give me a call..
When we're done, I'll buy you a beer..
How many times in life will you get a chance to stock your own hole with Sharelunker heritage fish?
This event will take place on Friday, May 12th, around noon..
We will be working out of the Zapata County Boat Ramp.
Call or e-mail me if you can help..
I would love to get some of these fish down the lake a bit, and as long as you release em in Falcon, I don't care where you take em.. A fast boat ride to their new home will shorten the time they spend in small water boxes..
Mixing a new bull, or cow in the heard is a good thing..
You know where to reach me.. So let me know if you can help out..
Of course you must have live wells working at peak efficiency to participate in this event!!
These fish must be put in Falcon!!
I'll pass along more info as I hear/get it..
And hopefully nobody slaps my hand for for what I said here or how I said it..
See you soon!
April 26, 2017: It's a beautiful morning here in Zapata.. But it ain't supposed to last.. We are expecting a north wind to blow in.. Up to twenty nine miles per hour.. Oh yeah.. And a high of about 103°..
I ain't making this shit up..
You just cain't get this kind of weather up north.. I told you I hate these cold fronts..
In any case, we have some dry Mexican desert air that is sliding east enough to encompass the entirety of Falcon lake. For the next few days..
Break out them sombreros and the sunblock boys and girls..
It's gonna be a hot week..
And to go along with the hot temps we are also having us some pretty good fishing.
Of course a lot of folks are complaining about a lot of small fish.. I ain't one of em..
I took a buddy fishing on Saturday, and we fished the Salado because it was a little windy.. A situation we are all too familiar with here lately.
have about run out of expressions and adjectives to describe the wind around here.
But let's just say that this month has been a windy
And if you do don your sombrero, you will need a chin strap..
Anyway we fished the back sides of some wind blown points with a few ledges on the downwind side.
And we fished a few windblown gravely banks as well.. And there were fish on all of them. Some more than others..
We fished from 10 till 1 and we a caught 23 fish.. Biggest going about three and a half.. Probably about eight keepers out of the group.
On Sunday, the north wind was blowing, so I headed out alone and ended up in the Hedieona.. And it was blowing more than anyone in their right mind would want it to.. But when you got a fishing Jones' it really don't matter.. But I heard the south end of the lake was a bitch..
Anyway, the north wind is never worth a crap here on Falcon, as I may have stated earlier in another post.. But I managed nine fish from ten till one and I headed back because I was tired of wind and so-so fishing..
I had about four keepers out of the batch and maybe a two and a half pounder in the mix.. So you can see that I am a real tournament threat..
Yesterday I went to Sugar for the first time in a year.. Because I have been hearing of these big fish and a good number of em..
Well evidently being gone for a year did not help me any, because we never got anything going.. Maybe it was too nice a day.. We caught about ten fish, missed a few, and our biggest was one five pounder..
This report may run counter to what you have been hearing. It certainly runs counter to what I have been hearing.. But I just think it was an off day.
I have a buddy who is still there and I'll get a report from him when he gets back. And if he says they whacked em..
Then I'm going back to golf..
Sugar is about eleven feet low, and the water color looks great. You can still get to the back side no problem..
If you go and do not know the lake well, you need to be careful. There are a few shallow humps that you can run across easily.. Out in the middle of nowhere.. These humps are made out of Rockbonerium.. Check the periodic table.
Kind of a cross of concrete and a Viagra hardon. And they're not gonna give.. But they will take..
Don't speed thru Miguel Alleman. We didn't..
Pero no es que dice el Policia.
We got a $50 window fine and were on our way.. AKA Mordida..
If you are not familiar and comfortable with navigation to Sugar, what's expected at the bridges, coming and going, and the possibilities of interaction with Mexican authorities, I recommend that you hire a guide for your trips there..
Oh.. And you might be able to catch more than ten fish..
(But I tell you the fuckers weren't biting..)
Over the weekend the Elite Bass Club from San Antonio was in town, and they had pretty good results.. I did not get the final tally..
But on Friday they had a jackpot from 5 till 8, and it took over fifteen pounds to win.. (Three fish)
And on Saturday, it was taking about a five pound average to be in the top three. (Three fish)
Sunday was a windy day.. I am not sure how they fared in the breeze..
But overall I am going to say that the fishing had surely picked up the last few weeks. Yes, there are a lot of small fish being caught. But I am never going to say that is a problem.
I have seen pics of a couple tens this last week and heard of a bunch of fours and fives. But in reality, there are not many folks down here fishing..
Deep cranks are catching the lions share of the better bass, and the Spro Little John DD is a good choice. The Citrus Shad and the Chartreuse Blue are the best colors it seems..
You can still catch em your way.. But the deep cranks are best for big fish. If you're into that kind of masochism..
The crappie are absolutely apeshit on brush piles and at the dam..
Alligator Gar are starting to show up as the water warms.. But they ain't everywhere just yet.. They will be before too long.
And on Sunday Sean from down at the Tigers stuck an arrow (or two) in this big ole bitch..
I guarantee you she was full of eggs.. That's biggern Rosie's belly.. Well almost..
A fish that size can easily have from 600,000 to 800,000 eggs in her.. Wonder how the population could ever get out of control..
Get down here and get you some.. But it will be better a bit later in the summer..
We're working on a couple of projects involving Falcon with TPWD.. One involving the fish kill in the Veleno.
And another I'll tell you about in a week or so.. And if you are a Falcon fan, you should like it..
It's my time of year, and I'll probably hit it again tomorrow.. If the wind actually don't blow, as predicted..
I like it hot.. So do the fish.. And we got it!
April 20, 2017: Well it is back to work around here after a few days off after the Easter weekend. It was a busy time in Zapata as well, if you were anywhere near the water where the public has access.
The locals come out of the woodwork on Easter. And this year was no different. The state park was packed as well with thousands, yes thousands, of people celebrating the day with family and friends. And water.. And a few beers I'd imagine..
But things are back to normal around here. If there is such a thing..
The lake is fluctuating a bit, and lately we have been catching a bit of water.. But just a bit..
They are still running water thru the lake at an impressive rate. And while daily rates of release seem to vary a bit, nothing drastic in water levels has happened here just yet. Of course big rains above us on the river have helped us maintain a level somewhere around 270.
The valley also had big rains, on both sides of the border.. But it ain't stopped their thirst down south. I ain't ever figured it out..
The fishing has picked up around here I hear.. Although I ain't had a taste of it.. I spoke to a lot of folks the last two days and most of them have reported good fishing, especially down south.
The water is still all murked up on this end, and you have to get to marker nineish, before you can see your bait in the water. But I have still heard of some fish coming out of some of the creeks on the north end as well..
But if I was going fishing, I'd head for the state park and put in there. Rocky points, and offshore ledges have had a lot of fish on them.
And speaking of offshore ledges, the crappie have been piled up on a lot of them. Jigging spoons are also catching a lot of these ledge fish, and it is a multi-specie bait for sure. Bass, crappie, white bass, and catfish have all been caught fishing vertically as of late.
There are a few good bass mixed in but a lot of these schools of fish are made up of smaller bass.. And some really nice crappie. The Mexican outlet at the dam has been a crappie hole for months, and it has shown no signs of stopping. I talked to some folks that that caught limits of crappie there three days in a row.
And some were visited by the Mexican game warden on Saturday. No issues were reported. But if you are fishing on the Mexican side you might want to take into consideration that they are in the area this week. Or last week anyway. Like I said, they are most always around on Easter weekend.
I have a buddy that has some brush piles out, and he said he whacked the fish on them on Saturday. Of course most folks don't have brush piles out, and if you are visiting from out of town you ain't gonna either.
But it is safe to say that a lot of fish are are setting up offshore. And it is that time of year.
There have been a lot of man hours put in fishing the dam here lately. And it has consistently produced fish. But not for everybody. But know that there are lot of fish calling the dam, and water within fifty yards of it, home.
We have sold a ton of deep divers lately, and if you are looking for a big fish, that is a great place to start.
And during the week, you won't have much competition down there either.
The boys from TPWD were in town today, delivering the first installment of Florida fingerlings this spring. Somewhere around 180,000 were spread out this afternoon on the top half of the lake. We should be getting close to 500,000 before the next month or so is over.
There is not a lot for these fish to hide in, but it is what it is..
I have had a lot of irons in the fire as of late, and not a lot of it has anything to do with the actual running of a tackle store. But a lot of it has to do with Falcon lake. And I'll tell you more about them in the next few weeks. But suffice it to say that that there are few things we are working on that you will be glad to hear if it all comes together.
Well most of you will anyway..
I fished Medina two days this week.. Lots a little ones. But that is my specialty anyway.. So that means I have fished nine days without fishing Falcon. I gotta get my ass back on the water..
Bass Champs is at Amistad this weekend, so I will imagine it will be a slow weekend around here.
Might be a good time for you to show up..
April 15, 2017: It's Easter weekend here in Zapata, and the natives are restless.. The smell of chicken on charcoal, fajitas and ribs on mesquite, and burning rubber fill the air..
Yes, the locals, which includes me, are primarily Catholic, and view Easter as a major holiday. Not so much from the churchgoing part.. But I am sure that is where the urge to gather and party originated..
I am not so sure that the resurrection of Christ has a lot to do with the partying that goes on..
But I can assure you that there will be pop-ups, BBQ pits, lawn chairs, fishin' poles, and plenty of beer loaded onto every kind of vehicle imaginable and headed for the lake. And while I praise the families that gather in the name of God, food and fun, I sure wish they were better at cleaning up after themselves..
I hate to be too optimistic, but it sounds like the fishing is picking up a bit around here.. At least on the south end of the lake.. Think rock.. And birds..
The shad are still thick on points and gravely banks.. And where the food is, the fish won't be too far away..
The rip-rap on the dam has produced some fish as of late as well.. But it usually does..
The water flow thru the lake is still going on.. While we have dropped a few inches and gained a few inches the last two weeks. There is a lot of water coming in.. But just as much going out..
That has the top of the lake dirty, and off color down to marker eight.. The river above the Salado is downright dirty..
And while I should have/could have fished this week, the wind and work and licking my wounds from a solid week of fishing kept me off the water.
Guess I am just getting old..
Here's a bit of info for you.. What do I always say on Easter weekend.. When do we see Mexican game wardens/law enforcement on the water?
Well they're here.. Yesterday they were seen patrolling near the dam. Like usual..
So long story short.. The fishing is decent.. And the locals are taking over the lake for the weekend..
We'll pick up the pieces on Monday..
I have been trying to avoid the news channels on TV as of late.. My life doesn't seem to change much if I watch them or if I don't.. Although my blood pressure might..
Anyway, it is hard to sit down in front of a computer without having the news of the day shoved up your ass.. Or at least what someone thinks is news.. It's hard to not see or hear what is going on in the world.. But I guess some manage it..
If I was boss there are a few things I'd do.. Here are a few thoughts..
As volatile as the world is these days, I think we, as a country, need to re-access exactly what all we are involved in..
Because frankly, no one really knows what all we are involved in.
I would give ninety days notice, that we are suspending all immigration for two years.. Get it done in ninety days. If you don't like it here.. Get the hell out.. I don't care if you are trying to get the rest of your family here..
Get it done in ninety days or wait till the moratorium is over. Or go back to the shithole you came from.
We'll re-access our progress in a couple of years and see what is happening..
In one year, I would close all but one base in South Korea. You do realize that we we have twelve bases in South Korea, don't you.. Plus a few outposts and smaller bases.. Numbering up to 87..
And when I was leaving, I would tell that sawed off, fat midget, little piece of shit psychopath dictator in North Korea that if we hear of one aggression to the south or in his general vicinity, we won't be invading his country, but we will be invading him..
I really do not think that he is too concerned with his people.. I would make it very plain to him that his life would be over very shortly after he started any shit.. Let him talk all the shit he wants..
You do realize that we have 179 bases/posts/stations in Germany.. And these are just the bigger of the bunch.. Some say there are as many as 268..
109 in Japan.. Some say many more..
And on the rest of the planet who really knows how many..
Contraction.. Not just for combining two words anymore..
I'd give that same message to Putin and a few others as well..
I'd do two things in one. I'd stop imports of oil from the middle east.. And I'd turn the domestic production lose..
Let them son of a bitches eat sand..
I'd also stop all payments of financial aid to the middle east, and any country that sponsors terrorism..
Let them son of a bitches eat sand..
If they blew up, bombed, or attacked any American interests, I level their world..
Let them son of a bitches eat glass..
I guess that is a good start on foreign policy..
On the home front, there are a few things I address as well..
I would immediately suspend all deep space adventures.. Maybe after we can take care of life here on earth, we can go back to space.. But it won't be in our lifetimes. Let the billionaires spend their money on that shit..
Satellites are cool.. But I don't really give a fuck if there is ice on Mars..
I would instantly retire half of the postal service employees.. There is no reason in hell that we need to get mail every day.. I'd get rid of half of the fleet of delivery vehicles.. You'd get your mail delivered twice a week.
Letter carriers would work two routes.. So simple a child can figure this one out..
We send all important shit overnight anyway.. I don't think you'll die if you don't get your junk mail but twice a week..
Look at the fuel and pollution savings that would bring.. It's a no brainer!
I would terminate payments to mothers of children on a per child basis.. Just because you can't keep your legs closed or are too lazy to to prevent pregnancy don't mean that I have to support your spawn for the rest of his life.. Having babies as a way to make a living would come to a stop..
I would pull out of the UN in the first week. I would only take that long so we can get our shit out of the buildings..
I would get rid of the IRS and go to some sort of consumption tax.. We'd all pay.. And all save.. And the savings to the country would be in-calculable..
And I'd get rid of the DH.. Man up and pick up some lumber..
I guess that's enough for the first week in office..
And I'd still have time to play some golf..
You do know that the US Military runs 234 golf courses around the world, don't you??
Well I'll quit bitching for now.. Maybe next time we'll discuss Senators and Congressmen's terms of employment and compensation, including retirement..
There's another boondoggle..
Of course Easter is tomorrow, and I hope you understand the significance of the day. And I hope you get to spend some time with family and friends, and give some thought to the events, circa day one A.D.
If you are a non-believer, or a cult member, and you are still alive, then there is still a chance for you.
But you need to pull your head out of your ass and find the peace and joy of living daily with the Prince of Peace, Jesus Christ..
Nothing is easy.. But nothing is easier..
He Is Risen!
God Bless You!
And Happy Easter!
April 11, 2017: Another week. Another windstorm.. This stuff is getting ridiculous..
I hear there is a new Hobie Cat dealer going in down the street.. Bet he is going to kick some ass..
It is hard for me to get a handle on what's going on with the fishing around here. I have not been on the lake and I have only talked to a handful of guys that have.
Last weekend there was a tournament that was HQ'd out of Guerrero, across the lake near the mouth of the Salanaias.
From what I heard there were about sixty teams entered, and on Saturday there were three or four stringers over twenty pounds weighed in, and the leaders had about twenty two.
Saturday was a windy SOB, and Sunday was not much better.. So windy on Sunday that I canceled my planned excursion out on the lake.
What I do hear is that the river above us, and the Salado is a dirty son of a gun. There is a lot of water passing through the lake right now, and it has the top of the lake looking like mud. The river channel is dirty all the way down to marker ten, and funky looking down to marker nine..
Last night we had a rogue thunderstorm pop up about three thirty, and it rained and hailed for about thirty minutes. We got about a half inch of rain, which will settle the dust for a day or so..
The fishermen that I have talked to say that they are catching, and not catching fish, in most every way known to man. I know a few good fish were caught last weekend in the tourney on squarebills, in very shallow water. Which makes no sense, but Falcon fish do like shallow water..
A spinnerbait is also catching a few and of course dragging any kind of plastic down a rocky slope or ridge, or on a point can get you bit.
If the freaking wind would quit blowing for a bit we might be able to actually come up with some kind of pattern. It is already hot down here.. It might as well get still as well..
But it ain't yet..
I know yall think I have been fuckin' off lately.. And I have to some extent.. Catchin' all them fish down in Mexico.. Somebody's gotta do it..
BTW.. Speed is keeping the camp open into June this year if you want to go.. It's been that good. Call me if you have questions..
But back to business..
TPWD has come up with a number (some seven months later) for damages caused by the fish kill behind the Veleno Bridge project. And a lot of details are still up in the air. But PAW and the contractor are going to be working out some sort of settlement on damages, and some kind of reparations are to be made.
I met with PAW and a couple of our county fathers yesterday to discuss options for disposal of said reparations, and whatever we do has to have a direct connection to fishing, or the improvement or enjoyment of same.
And we came up with a few options that could help out around here.. We'll see what happens and I'll keep you posted.
I am also involved in another project that could improve the fishing at Falcon. But for now it is still hush-hush as details are being worked out..
I'll keep you posted..
We are scheduled for stocking of Florida fingerlings in late May or early June I hear, and we should be getting about 400,000 to 500,000, if things go well at the hatcheries and all go as planned.
We don't have a lot of places for baby fish to hide this year, so we'll have to do some research as where to put them.. Cover ain't everywhere.. Hell or hardly anywhere..
We are not going to have a good year class this go round..
I got the news this week that the API tournament will be held the weekend of June 8-10.. Yep that's a Friday and Saturday tournament.
It will be an open tourney I hear, and there is no requirement for the fishermen to be oil field related. Look for more info soon and contact info in the near future. It will be hosted over at Beacon as usual and there will be many more festivities as well.. Stay tuned..
Hopefully the wind will give us a reprieve soon, and we'll be able to fish without our pockets full of rocks.
This crap is giving me the redass.. I got all my rods and reels put back together and respooled and tied on and all I'm waiting on is the flags to not look starched..
And if Tommy turns his back...
April 7, 2017: It's a bit on the cool side down here the last two mornings.. With lows yesterday in the forties.. But it ain't gonna last..
Today is supposed to be a nice day for fishing.. But it gets a bit windy over the weekend..
I got back in from Picachos yesterday, and have not spoken to a lot of folks about what they have been doing here on Falcon. But this AM I talked to a few and they said they are catching a bunch of small fish.. With a six or seven mixed in here or there..
Sounds the same as before I left..
These guys were buying trick worms and Spot Remover type shakey heads..
Any port in a storm..
I guess the big news is water levels and water movement. They are taking a lot of water out of Falcon.. Near 9000 CFS.. So if you are one that likes to fish the dam during high water traffic times, this is one of em..
There was a big rain around Del Rio while I was gone.. And it put some water in the river.. They are also releasing about 7000 CFS out of Amistad.
But the rain influx is about to run out and I am sure we will continue to drop for the near future..
And yes of course Mexican lakes have a lot of water in them.. In northern Mexico anyway..
Points with rock are still the best number producers around here.. A small offering is probably best to start with.. To get yourself bit..
I have not been out there, but I bet a C-rig with a super fluke or baby brush hog will catch some fish..
I was looking at the tournament schedule and we don't have anything on the books for the next few weeks.. And nothing of any size till the API tournament rolls around sometimes in June.. And I don't have a date on that just yet..
Not a whole lot of anything else going on around here.. But we got plenty of room for you..
I have been down at Picachos in western Mexico for the last week. And I had not been out of Zapata since Christmas.. Other than a trip or two to Laredo for some yeast and copper line..
And it was good to get away and not have to do anything.. Except eat and fish.. And siesta..
It was Mexico after all..
Of course I went with Ron Speed, and when you do, you don't have to worry about much.. Except having enough baits.. They take care of the rest. And holy shit do I need to go on a diet..
I am not used to three big meals a day.. And deserts after two of em..
But evidently I have no aversion to them either..
We caught a lot of fish, and a lot of nice fish.. No monsters.. But a lot of two to four pound fish. And we ran into several wolf packs of three and a half pounders that want to pull you out of the boat..
We also had a couple of mornings when we whacked the crap out of top water fish.. Some really nice ones in the mix as well..
My big fish of the week was a 6-7. And there were a few other sevens and eights caught.. But not by me..
I will be doing a full report on the trip before too long..
But for the mean time.. It's back to the grind..
Come see us before too gets too damn hot..
March 27, 2017: It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood.. I should be fishing.. But I ain't.
I reckon that by now you have seen the Bass Champs results from over the weekend. Mike Bates and Ty Heineman won it with a 28.09 stringer.. With no "big" bass in the sack..
But let's see.. Twenty eight divided by five.. That's a five point six pound average.. I don't care what anybody says.. Them is big fish..
In years past, I have personally weighed two fish over thirteen for Ty.. So they're no stranger to em'..
There were only eight stringers over twenty pounds this go-round.. But I am really not too surprised.. I have been saying that the bigger fish have been hard to come by in numbers for a while.
One hundred twenty eight teams participated..
We won't be seeing Bas Champs till next spring I reckon.. Thanks for bringing the show to south Texas boys and girls..
I fished yesterday for a few hours. And of course the wind blew like bitch.
I was changing the oil on the space shuttle once and they launched the bastard right after I put the dipstick back in..
It blew about like that..
But I did something I ain't done before. I caught a bass and a carp on the same cast.. And I did it the hard way.. On a fluke.. One hook.. Of course the bass must have hogtied the carp with the line..
I thought I had me something..
There's always something out there that you ain't seen before...
PAW finished up their mini shocking study, and in the entire time on the water, they did not see a single baby bass, that is one born in the last few months..
I told you there in nothing for the babies to hide in..
I don't believe for a second that there are no survivors in the lake from this years spawn.. But there aren't going to be many. It will be a poor year class..
Good thing we had a big spawn last year and a big summer spawn. They did catch a bunch of five and six inch fish from this summer.. Maybe a few born in December.. But nothing from the last sixty days..
We saw it coming..
All that being said, there is a shit load of juvenile fish in the lake. I would love to have ten or fifteen feet more of water on em..
And as I say that, Mexico has started to pull water pretty hard in the last five days..
Back to the fishing.. Most all of the anglers I interviewed at the weigh in said they caught their big fish shallow.. Lots of em came flipping.. Trees and rocks..
The usual suspects worked as far as plastics go.. Brush hogs, lizards, flukes and senkos.. There were some hard bait fish as well.. And a lot of numbers on C-rigs..
And that is all the info that made it thru the filter to my ears..
If you are keeping score.. It has been seven months since the fish kill in the Veleno. Still no report. No accountability.. No nothing.. Come on PAW.. Pull your head out and get this settled. It's ridiculous.
I can't believe that these people still have jobs.. It would never work in the private sector.. But this is the government.. And we ain't getting what we are paying for..
What a crock.. If this shit happened on Fork it would be front page news..
This will probably be my last effort for ten days or so.. Unless the wireless gods of Mexico have upgraded their service.. If so I'll give you update on the fishing from Pichachos..
If not.. I'll see you when you get back!
March 23, 2017: They said it was gonna happen.. And it is..
The wind is blowing like a flamethrower.. Although not near as hot.. But I can guarantee you that there are some giant waves out there right now..
The good news is that it is supposed to lay tonight, and then come out of the west tomorrow.. And then on Saturday it is supposed to be damn near calm and a high around ninety..
Should be a great day for Bass Champs.. And the ramp will be a lot better, being five wide.. If anybody can back a trailer.. And I know you guys can..
Yesterday was fishable, but it was still a bit on the breezy side. But you could hide in a lot of coves and still catch fish.
A Carolina rig is undoubtedly still the best way to catch numbers. Find a gravel point with wind on it and drag a fluke or a lizard down or across it.
A few big fish have been caught on a spinnerbait, but it has taken a lot of casts. But I could say that for most baits.
Squarebills in Powder Blue Back Chartreuse and Sexy Shad have been good in the shallows..
Points with birds on them guarantee the presence of bait. And let me tell you there is some bait in the water..
I was out with TPWD on the shock boat yesterday, and I will have to say that I may have never seen threadfin shad and gizzard shad in the numbers that we saw them yesterday.. I am talking about clouds of them on every windblown point.. And in the stickups.. And.. Everywhere..
I am amazed that you can get a bite at all..
We also shocked up some nice post spawn bass here in the Veleno. Nothing over five pounds, but good numbers of them on several stops. Of course the tilapia and carp were thick as well.
Just gobs of fish.. But I saw no fingerling sized bass..
They will be here today and tomorrow finishing up, weather permitting.. And I will query them on final results.
It is always fun to get out there and see what comes up when you give em the juice.. For me anyway..
Not sure we will have much of a year class this spring. But for the fish that are in the lake.. There are lots of groceries..
I will assume that is why the cormorants like it here as well.
Last summer we were seeing a lot of small shad in the water.. And that is what the fish were schooling on. But right now, these shad are up shallow spawning, and there are a ton of big, fat, mature threadfin shad everywhere we looked..
If we could put some water in this thing, in two years it would be just stupid..
In any case, not a lot has changed.. Except wind speed..
Come see us.. If the building is still here..
March 20, 2017: Have you ever heard of the wind blowing in Texas in March? Jiminy Christmas.. Been hard to catch a break from it around here lately..
And of course fishing open water can be a bit of a challenge when you can't keep your hat on..
Fishing has been a little tough when it comes to catching big fish.. In the course of the day it is not at all unusual to run into one.. But putting a good sack together has been a little tough for me lately.. And a lot of other folks as well.
One thing that has not changed is that rocks, ledges in particular, have been the best thing going. Some rockpiles have produced a few good fish as well.
I had a couple of buddies in town over the weekend, and we fished yesterday till about 1:00. And we never put a three pounder in the boat.
We boated 26 fish, missed a dozen, and twenty two of them came off rocky ledges with the water blowing across them. I'm talking about long points with a drop off on the back side.. Casting into the wind and fishing down the slope or drop. Most of the time we had the boat in ten to fourteen feet of water, throwing up into two or three.
And almost all of the fish were situated right on the break.
We caught em' on a few different things, but Rage Craws seemed to be the ticket, and before too long we were all throwing them. Watermelon Red or Falcon Lake Craw or California Craw will all work.
The Plum Ol Monster did make an appearance though.. It is about that time of year. But they were kicking my ass, and I may be set in my ways, but I ain't stupid..
The Bass Federation South boys were in town over the weekend, and their results on Saturday were less than spectacular. Eleven pounds and change won the Saturday tourney, and I have not heard if they did any better on Sunday. That is pretty tough fishing in my book.
But somebody still won some money..
Spring break was last week around here, and there were a lot of folks down all week. We heard of some good fish, but no one that I talked to put the smackdown on multiple whoppers.
This weekend will bring Bass Champs back to Falcon for their second coming.. And a lot of folks have been down here poking around with Mr. Spock.. Making their version of; "In search Of."
Some have said they have found more Ferengi than bass.. But I have been around tournament fishermen a long time, and you can tell when they're lying.. Cause their lips are moving..
I am sure somebody is on em.. Even if they won't admit it..
Remember that time when Captain Kirk nailed that green chick? Boldly going where no man had gone before..
Ah, the good old days of science fiction..When the Enterprise made regular trips to Uranus to wipe out Klingons..
Beats the shit out of The Walking Dead if you ask me..
I have been working me arse off around here, besides being laid up the entire month of February. Pretty much missed out entirely on the spawn. Ain't been to the ranch since Christmas.. And I haven't smelled any burning powder either.. I need to kill something..
Poor Poor Pitiful Me.. (Linda Ronstadt, 1978)
But next week I am getting out of here for about a week, Lord willing.
I am heading to Lake Pichacos, with Ron Speed Jr, and I will bet you that we are going to kick the shit out of hundreds of bass..
I have talked to several people that have been very recently and they said it was a whackfest.. And I am looking forward to being the customer for a while.
If you want to get your hookset honed, Pichachos is the place to get it done. And you can't go with a better outfitter than Ron.
I will, of course, give an account of the carnage when I return..
Of course getting there (and back) requires the use of American Airlines.. And I can honestly say that I have boarded a lot more of their planes than I have flown on.. But I'm getting pretty good at finding my seat..
I am praying for no flight problems, and I hope nobody runs over a fire ant on the runway in Dallas, causing a shutdown in service.. Last time a baggage handler spilled his Coke on the tarmac and I spent two nights at a Holiday Inn Express.. And I didn't feel any smarter..
Anyway, the Anticipation (Carly Simon 1971) is killing me..
I'm studying up for a Jeopardy tryout..
I'll take Mexico for $2000.. And Alex.. Make it a true Daily Double..
March 15, 2017: "Beware the ides of March!"
What the hell does that mean?
Well unless you were Julius Caesar I guess it don't mean shit.. But history holds that it was on the fifteenth of March that Caesar was killed.. Some 2060 years ago.. Despite being warned by a fortuneteller.. Hence the saying..
Ask a millennial about Caesar and they will probably say that they like Ranch better.. With croutons..
But I digress..
March fifteenth around here means post spawn fish, (usually and predominantly). There are still a few holdouts that have not gotten it done but their numbers are declining every day.
And you know how crazy these fish are around here.. They seem to spawn when they take a mind to.. But certainly the vast majority spawn in the spring..
Water temps are in the seventies everywhere, and you will find variations of it from creek to creek.. High seventies in some places.
Although we had a lot warmer February than we have had a March to date. And local rains and clouds for a few days have kept the water from getting into the eighties just yet.. But it won't be too long..
We are still rising ever so slowly, and this morning we are sitting at 271.41, or 29.79 feet low..
That ain't good.. But it could be a lot worse.. And we are just about one foot higher than it was one month ago.
And BTW, the ramps are fine on both ends of the lake.
Fishing is good overall, and there have been some nice stringers caught as of late. The area around the dam and the Rip-Rap continues to turn out some big fish. Sometimes several.
And there have been quite a few fishermen in that vicinity dragging deep crankbaits and Carolina rigs across, along, over, and between the rocks.. I hear it is a crankbait party..
Man I hate that shit..
But rocks it is, no matter where you are fishing on Falcon right now. If there ain't some rock around, you are going to catch a lot less fish. Period...
Ledges and drop-offs and bluffs, roadbeds and fence lines.. And kind of rocky depth change can have some good fish holding on it..
I don't think the bait is as important as where you are fishing, and it usually ain't. You get around some fish, chances are you are gonna catch some..
I fished yesterday for about three hours, and I ended up in the Tigers. And while my intentions were to catch a few crappie for a fish fry, it was hard to hold in open water and fish a brush pile with kinda rough water.. They weren't biting too good anyway.. And they was little..
And while I did stop on the way to the Tigers, I had no luck with the bass till I ended up on a couple of windblown points in Big Tiger. And while I had a pile of rods on the deck, only the one with a fluke on it got me bit..
Hell if I know.. I did not catch but about half of the bites I got, but I did catch a six and a half in the batch.. Maybe a couple other keepers but some small fry mixed in..
I did not bust it too hard.. This is supposed to be fun, afterall.
I talked to several fishermen yesterday evening that did much better than me. And Jay Grieshaw said he had a heck of a day. On soft plastics..
I must be doing something wrong.. Or at least doing it in the wrong place..
The shad are so thick in some places right now that I am surprised that you can get a bite at all. It is not at all unusual to hook a couple a day if you throw a squarebill much. And some folks told me that it don't hurt to leave em on there either.. I gotta try that..
Spring break is underway, and we have had quite a few folks down with their young-un's.. And they are having a good time. Though some seem a bit bleary eyed early in the am..
This week is the last before the Bass Champs boys roll into town, and they are off limits during the week, next week. So if you want to fish in slightly less crowded conditions, you might come down next week.
The weather is looking good.. I am ready for summer and hot water and grouped up fish. It's coming..
I have been watching the political battlefield from a distance, cause I don't want any of this shit splattering to land on me. And I find it comical..
I think I want to be part of the resistance..
If I can find something to resist..
I love the thought process that makes everyone a victim..
I'm in the country illegally, and that makes me a victim..
I'm a criminal, and that makes me a victim..
I'm a woman and I'm a victim..
I'm not white and I'm a victim..
I'm white and stupid, and I'm a victim..
I got horny, got pregnant, and I need an abortion, and I'm a victim..
I'm too lazy to work, and I'm a victim..
I'm just plain lazy.. But I'm still a victim..
All victims of the nanny state that has allowed you to get along with little effort and the use of less personal responsibility than can even be imagined..
How the hell did we get here?
I saw yesterday that an elected female Texas Democrat introduced a bill to make it illegal for men to masturbate..
No more pulling your pud.. Choking the chicken.. Lopin' the mule.. No more Jackin off, Jerkin off, Strokin off, or dating Rosy Palm and her five lovely sisters..
No more wrasslin' with the one eyed Python.. No more jerkin' the Gherkin.. No more slappin' the salami..
What's the world coming to..
This gal evidently equates masturbation to abortion.. And the wordage says [penile] "Emissions outside a woman's vagina" could be illegal..
Hell maybe this bill ain't such a bad idea..
But if enacted, wordage would need to be added to the law that will also require a vagina to be available whenever the need to make some emissions occurs..
I think that would be a pretty easy sell to most men..
I also think that the bill is very prejudicial towards the gays.. Where the hell will they put their emissions??
I don't think she thought this through..
How would you like to get a job at the new state agency in charge of collecting the evidence?
Makes working at Oatis Spunkmeyer cookies look pretty good..
Has America really come to this?
How about all of us.. Taking responsibility for our own lives.
None of us can change where we were born, what color we are, or what country we were born in.. I'm certainly not holding it against you for who you are.. No matter your color or nationality. And I hope I can get the same in return..
But if you are an idiot, I will hold that against you, no matter your color or nationality.. I don't think that "Idiot" is one of the protected classes. At least not yet..
Seems fair enough..
All we can do is live the life we have.. And believe me it is too short already to spend it fighting over Bullshit..
And all this stuff is purely and simply, bullshit..
March 9, 2017: Well there's one good thing going on around here this week.. It's been raining in the valley.. Yesterday and today again.. Yee Ha..
Hope it satisfies their lust for Falcon water..
It rained around us yesterday.. All around us.. But not here.
The lake is still barely creeping up.. Amistad has gone into a different kind of water release pattern.. But I am really not sure if it is a plus or minus for us.. Reckon we'll see..
Unless something weird happens, and we loose some water, which is always a possibility around here, the county boat ramp should be four wide by the time Bass Champs shows back up.. I think you can do it now.. But the fence is still up at the end of the ramp..
I'll work on that..
I went out about three hours this AM and actually got about fifteen bites. None of them were big fish.. I don't think.. My hookset still kinda sucks and I missed a bunch of em.. I did have a few keepers in the batch.. But not anything you'd call a goodun..
I talked to a few other people that did about like me.. And one that did a lot better..
I fished the Hedieona nd the Salado.. Because I knew I was not going to be out there too long. So I did not go running all Nilly-Willy all over the lake..
I fished rocky points and secondary points.. All with rock or gravel.. And in classic fashion the fish were set up looking in to the wind/current and I was dragging the bait into them.. Caught a few on that chartreuse squarebill, but most on a Rage Menace in FLC.. Could not get bit on the C-rig, which has not been the norm..
Water temps are high sixties to low seventies, depending on where you are..
I do believe that we are in the last days of the spawn. I am sure there will be a few spawners caught, but I believe their numbers are getting few.. For whatever that is worth.. I hear of a few more spawning fish down on the south end of the lake..
The flipping pattern is still about as consistent as anything. I have heard a few folks say that they are catching them on deep diving baits, in the 12-14 foot range. But everywhere I have tried it I have had no luck.. I have plowed the gravel till I turned a 5XD into a 1.5..
Location, Location, Location..
The rip-rap on the dam is still putting out some great fish on a daily basis.. But you might only catch one.. One fish..
For a hundred or two casts.. But it could be a Motherfucker..
Like I have been saying the last couple of weeks.. You gotta put in your time.. Those that have come down, and put their nose to the grindstone have caught fish.. And you can too..
I don't know if there is any one bait that is head and shoulders above any other.. But I would not go out without some lizards, sexy shad squarebills, and a Rage Craw.. And maybe a spinnerbait..
Why Sexy Shad you ask?
Our threadfin shad have a distinct chartreuse stripe on them.. And I believe it is more pronounced when they are spawning.. Which they are doing right now.. It is not at all unusual to hook them on your crankbait. Happened to me this morning.. This pic was given us by one of our customers..
You might want to throw it...
I'm a hardheaded bastard and often I don't catch fish because I want to catch em my way.. When they could give a shit.. About what I'm throwing..
But I stick with it anyway because I know I caught em on that stuff before.. And it should work everyday.. But often times it don't.
So don't be afraid to shuffle thru the tackle box a bit these days if you are not having much luck.. I have heard of a lot of different baits catching fish as of late.. But like I said, it is all about time on the water.. Go get em..
I am feeling better and better, and like I have always said, better living thru better chemicals..
I say; "Go Big Pharma!" Keep making some shit that will keep me on the playing field.. Or some semblance there of..
I just wish it hadn't taken so long to figure out..
I know a lot of my problems with joints and bones is due to some of my activities when I was younger. I played every high impact sport there was.. I played basketball on concrete floors till I was forty five.. Twice a week..
I rolled over in cars more times than a typical hooker rolls over in a week.. I tried to punch out oak trees and a regularly picked fights with thunderstorms..
I've had my ass kicked by Cows, Bulls, Calves, motorcycles and four wheelers.. I have jumped out of a jet boat at 70 plus MPH because I had to pee.. Other folks said I jumped out because I drank a lot of beer..
Well that's why I had to pee.. Semantics..
In any case, I have decided that I need to take better care of myself in my gray haired years.. And I am gonna quit ignoring a few problems I have.
And I recommend to you younger guys to take good care of yourselves now.. Because like me you might live longer than you expected..
And like my Daddy said.. Getting old ain't for pussies..
He wad'nt lying...
Get on down here and see us.. I'm feeling pretty good.
So I'll probably see you on the water!
March 6, 2017: Fishing was a mixed bag over the weekend around here. Some folks did good, some had a tough time of it. Including me yesterday as I flipped 397 trees and caught one fish.
But dammit I flipped em well.. Maybe it was just the Lord going easy on me as he knows my hookset still sucks.. My batwing side swing motion does leave something to be desired.. But it was good to get out for a bit and run the boat if nothing else..
Of course Saturday was a washout around here.. Remember that I always say that when we get rain it is a raise the dead thunderstorm and it is gone in a hurry..
Well I lied.. It rained for eight hours on Saturday and we ended up with 3.35 inches. And the good news is that most of the valley got good rains, and it is possible that this rain saved us a bunch of water from the lake.
And we have rain predicted for the middle of this week as well. Bring it on, says I.. Next weekend is looking good from this viewpoint, as I have tried to schedule the rains for mid-week days..
A lot of the snowbirds have started exiting the area, and this morning there were only fourteen rigs at the county ramp at nine O'clock. Down from about fifty last Monday..
The lake came up about four inches since last Friday. But water clarity still looked great everywhere I stopped yesterday. But the water did cool three to four degrees from where it was before the rain.
I do think that the spawn is still on, but it is most likely in the last third. More and more spawned out fish are showing up. But I do believe we will see one more strong wave of fish this weekend as the full moon is Monday.
Personally I am ready for this spawn to be over. And it won't be long till the fish chill out and group up.. Like they're supposed to.. And then maybe I can catch em'..
I'll have to admit that I have lost contact with em' for the short term.. Being off the water for a month really sucked.
To day is a bit breezy.. But fishable.. Rain supposed to start tomorrow evening..
There is not a lot I can tell you about baits that I haven't recently. Not a lot has changed. You could catch a pig on your next flip.. Or not..
If you read my last post, (and you should) I was talking about the CAST kids tournament coming up in San Antonio. And the way some of it gets paid for. There is a guide auction fund raiser going on, and I have a few more guides to add to the list.
Their generosity helps make this event possible. But their generosity won't work if your generosity don't..
And you get a double good deed checked off your list if you buy/win a trip with them. You help a great cause, and you get to go fishing.. What a deal! Especially if you were considering hiring a guide anyway.
Jimmy Steed, Charles Whited, and Calvin Hudson have also donated a day of their services to the auction as well.
That is a pretty broad spectrum of guides to choose from, and all of them can swing it..
So bid early and bid often.. See below for bidding details and the rest of the guides involved .. And/or you can e-mail Jim Behnken for all details at:
I'm heading back down to Lake Pichachos in Mexico at the end of the month, and I can hardly wait.. Except for going to Laredo the get a freaking MRI, I haven't been out of Zapata since Christmas..
Word is from the folks at Ron Speed Adventures is that it is a fishfest..
This will be my fourth trip there, and my favorite time of year to go.. The shad spawn should be in full bloom and we should kick their ass.
As for me till then.. Looks like I'll be stuck inside again for most of the week.. Pissin' and moanin' about the bad weather..
I got some catchin up to do..
March 4, 2017: March has arrived in Zapata, and so has some springtime weather.. It is raining here this morning and we have already had about an inch. And we need it. As does the valley and it looks like they will get some as well.
Hopefully enough to keep the gates closed for a while at the dam. If we get a couple of inches down south it will save us a bunch of much needed water. As we don't have a bunch to spare.
We are sitting at 270.71, which equates to 30.49 feet low. Water temps have been around seventy, but we have had clouds and cool a few days this week. And blue jeans have been the order of the day for a few..
The last few cloudy days have not been good for the fishing, with reports of fewer fish and smaller fish being the norm. I expect that to turn around quickly as the sun makes a re-appearance early next week.
Things were really good just a few days ago.
I ventured out on the water yesterday for the first time in thirty one days. Probably the longest stretch I have gone without fishing in thirty years.. And it was good to get out of the shop.. Even though my hookset was virtually non existent. But I still managed a few..
My partner kicked my ass. But I just could not get a hook in em.. It is getting better..
Shallow fish are still the best thing going, and you can catch em pretty good on a squarebill paralleling the rocks, right along the bank. Bigger fish still seem to be on wood, and flipping the sticks.
Lizards and brush hogs are good choices, but any soft plastic can get it done if you get around the fish.. Time on the water and persistence are the two best baits in your tackle box.
Ain't it always..
The top of the lake is putting out numbers of fish, and some rocky points can have a shit ton of little bass on them. Finding a pile of big fish has not been happening very often..
Kinda back to the rural school bus pattern.. Go along a while and pick one up.. Go along a while and pick up another..
Persistence is the key.. You can catch a biggun.. But you gotta put your time in.
We have had a lot of fishermen in town, and folks are here from all over the country. I will have to say that more people have been here in February than we have had in about three years.
Some folks have hit it good, and some have struggled a bit. Most of that has been weather related. North winds and clouds have not been beneficial to the ongoing spawn. But it is ongoing..
And I expect that we will see another wave of spawners up at the full moon, which happens on the 12th..
Bass Champs will return for their second event on the 25th, and I expect to see some really good stringers as these post spawn fish should get back to chomping once their sexual antics are completed.
I remember it making me hungry..
I don't advertise too much stuff on my site, but there are a few things that are near and dear to my heart.
And one of them is the annual CAST (Catch A Special Thrill) event put on for special needs kids at Calaveras lake near San Antonio. CAST is a national organization that provides opportunities for children to fish that may never have the opportunity at any other time.
And getting any kid outdoors is a good thing.
You may know Jim Behnken that guided here on Falcon for several years. And he is National Director for the organization. And once again he is heading up the event.
It takes money to put these events on, (and which ones don't) and once again this year a guide auction is being held to raise funds to help offset expenses.
And thanks to the generosity of several Falcon and Amistad guides, you can buy a guide for a day, and while you are fishing you can help a few kids Catch A Special Thrill.
This year the guide lineup here on Falcon includes Jim Edwards, Jay Grieshaw, John Adami, and James Bendele, aka Yours Truly..
On Amistad, Ray Hanselman has donated a trip as well.
I am not a guide, but I have been on the lake a time or two.. And I am good at opening beer..
If you would like to bid on a guide, or make a donation to the cause, please e-mail your bid with the guide you'd like to fish with to Jim Behnken. Bids start at $250.00.
His e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org
You can pay by check, or ask Jim about online payment options.
Your generosity is much appreciated.
We have a lot of wet fishermen in the store this morning, as a few brave souls have been out there testing their rain gear. Not a common occurrence here in Zapata. But it is looking like most of the boats are back off the water.
But if it is gonna rain, I say let er' rain.. And thank the Lord for every drop..
My left hand is getting better, so maybe it won't be so long before I am back to filling your computer with more bullshit.
I'm working on it now..
Come see us if you can. But wait till the sun comes out!
February 25, 2017: Another week of wind and weather.. But it has not been too bad.. Meaning you could fish if you wanted to.. Wednesday was perfect.. The rest of the days were a bit windy.. As is today..
Fishing has not changed one bit in the last week.. And I don't expect it to this week either..
Some folks have reported incredible numbers.. But those fish have run in the small size overall. Every now and then a good one is in the mix.
Rocks still seem to be the major factor in finding any numbers of fish.
A Carolina rig is still the number one method for catching big numbers of fish.
If you are targeting only big fish, then a Texas rigged flipping bait, thrown at hardwoods, is probably your best bet for hooking a hog..
Of course there is always an exception to the rule.. You just never know..
There are a lot of fish that are done with the spawn.. But there are a lot of them that are not.. It appears that this year we will still have spawning fish well into March.. Which really is not that unusual..
Post spawn fish on ledges are being caught on deeper crankbaits.. A big billed bait has produced some fish for several people we have talked to this week..
But I cannot say definitively that there is any one way that is better than another to catch big fish.. You just need to put your time in..
I have not posted any big fish pictures this spring.. Not sure of the reason.. Maybe I am just lazy.. That's a possibility. But here is a big fish picture for you.. This tilapia weighed six pounds fifteen ounces.. That's the biggest tilapia I have ever seen.
The crappie are still being caught at a good clip.. And there are a lot of folks here catching them.. And there are a few gluttons in that group as well..
The alligator gar are getting more active, and we have heard of some decent bowfishing action, on the days when the wind is not blowing twenty miles per hour..
And the catfish are always cooperative around here.. Good rod and reel action has been reported and we have some buddies that have jugs put out this weekend.. Still waiting for a report from them.
There are several bass clubs in town, and generally speaking there quite a few folks here enjoying the warm weather and chasing the bass as well.. It is February after all..
And it is our busiest time of year.
Water temps are in the low to mid seventies, and it has most species headed to the bank to spawn. Including the tilapia and the carp. It is a splashfest in the shallows in a lot of places I hear..
The lake is pretty much holding steady for right now.. We are about 30.5 feet low. And I have no idea what is in store for the near future.. But I am sure that irrigation draws are bound to start up again before too long..
A generous rain across the valley would be awesome.. But I don't see it on the horizon..
We did get .65" on the 19th. The first real rain of any kind we have had in months.. And it is pretty much gone..
We're due, baby..
I still have not been on the lake in weeks.. Twenty six days to be exact.. I could hear the boat whining last night while I laid in bed.. Maybe it was me..
I'm gonna have to go for a boat ride if nothing else.. My hand/wrist/arm is better.. But still a long way from fishable..
I'm getting a little grumpy my wife says..
Come see us if you get a chance.. The Huisache is blooming.. You know what that means..
February 19, 2017: It's Sunday Morning in Zapata, and like usual, there is a early group of fishermen that come thru the store, and then a lull in the action till the locals wake up, usually around noon.
The last year or so we have taken to closing early on Sunday. Normally a day I fish.. Weather permitting..
But having a bum wrist is keeping me off the lake and I have not fished in 21 days.. I'm getting a little grumpy..
The Texas Bass Nation Tourney wrapped up yesterday, and like all tourneys we had winners.. Even if we think the weights were not where they should have been.
And maybe that is just me.. And granted a lot of these guys have not fished Falcon much as they were from all over the state.
In the boater division, Nick Diberardino with the Bass Anglers of Houston took top honors with a two day ten fish stringer that weighed 41.02 pounds.
In the non-boater division, a two day, six fish limit (3 fish limit per day) of 39.11 was brought to the scales by Robert Mosley of Brush Country Bassmasters.
On day one, the big bass of the day was caught by Scott Callaway, and it went 8.81 pounds. On day two, the digital display lit up at 9.82 when Chad Petrie placed his big bass on the scale.
There were a bunch of nice fish caught, in the five to six pound range.. But not a lot of folks were able to string a pile of them together.
You can find their full results on their website. Just Google 'Texas Bass Nation'..
Congrats to the winners and again I'd like to thank The Bass Nation for picking Falcon and Zapata for your tournament.
You guys were great to visit with and on behalf of Zapata businesses, and especially Falcon Lake Tackle,
If you were here fishing but not fishing the tourney, I am sure you noticed the lake traffic a little higher than than our norm, even for February, which is invariably our busiest month.. For good reason.
Those fish are on the beds in a lot of areas, and we heard all kinds of stories about the ones that got off, broke off, jumped off, flopped off, and just pretty much kicked the anglers asses..
It happens.. And if you have fished Falcon much in the spring, I guarantee it has happened to you..
And of course, as the old saying goes, "An eel not caught is a big as your thigh.."
In the last few weeks, while I have been stuck here in the shop, I have seen a lot of pics of big fish, and have seen pics of two twelve's, a handful of elevens, and a dozen tens..
We don't have em like a few years back, but we have em.. And they are being caught every day. Not by me.. Which is really pissing me off.
And while I think my hand is getting better, I am still a loooong way from fishing.. So for the short term I will have to live vicariously.. Keep telling me what I am missing.. Hope springs eternal..
These fellers that were here last week threw the entire play book at em, as they left no peg unplucked, and kept us looking for what we might consider something too small or obscure.
A lot of em caught fish on shakey heads, finesse worms, lightweight jigs, and some swimbaits.
Of course most threw the Falcon standards of the day. Square bills, Texas rigged plastics of every description, carolina rigs, and a few drop shots..
It was pretty much all over the board..
And no doubt the best fish came off rocks in fairly shallow water. Some off the dam and the rocky community holes around it.. And off a lot of hardwoods that were in pretty shallow water..
If I was fishing right now I would put my boat in eight to ten feet of water and hit every rock and tree I saw.. But hell I'd probably say the same thing in August.. If you know me..
And pay particular attention to basket style hardwoods and thickets.. Although there is just not much thick stuff out there..
But if there is a glob of wood or a combination of trees together, beat it to death.. And don't be afraid to get between the bark and the sap as I like to say..
Fact is that you can catch em on anything you want to throw. But for numbers there is no doubt that we heard of lots of fish on Carolina rigs on slow sloping points. Small baits like a Super Speed Craw or a lizard are good choices. Something dangly.. Beaver style baits were good as well.
Come fishing.. It has been a little spotty with the fronts, but I am declaring winter officially over in Zapata.. And that should lead to more consistent fishing..
Here lately I have been pre-occupied with with this ailment I am dealing with. And I have watched a lot of TV, which certainly is a bad thing.. Too many commercials about.. Well everything.. But especially the drug companies..
Which I have been supporting a lot the last few weeks. I was eating Advil Liqui-gels like chicklets a week or so ago.. Did you know that if you take enough your shit will turn green? Or maybe you haven't taken as many as me..
But I have moved passed that to some no bullshit drugs.. The kinds found behind the counter.. And in other peoples medicine cabinets.. Hopefully this stuff the doctor put me on will cure the problem..
One side effect of one of em gives me a hellova woodie.. And here I am one handed.. Life is cruel..
But I have been watching this one commercial with particular interest.. It's for a drug called Prevagin..
It is made from some element originally found in Jellyfish.. Who ever though that one up.. Well they were thinking outside the box..
This drug is for continuing good brain function as you get along in years.. So it takes your brain back to when you thought rationally.. Maybe.. Helps to keep you from going crazy..
But I think there is a secret message in the name itself.
Let's break it down..
Pre.. Meaning before..
Vagin.. As in vagina..
So taking this drug could possibly take you back in time, to where your thought processes were before you got some vagina..
Cause I know a whole lot of men who went crazy; lost their minds, fortunes, families, businesses and friends.. All over vagina..
I think all men should start taking it immediately.. It could save the planet!!
What else is going on..
A couple of weeks ago there were all kinds of protests going on at airports across the country..
We were having a skeet shoot at ours.. Yep.. Right there on 21L..
There are a few advantages to living in Zapata..
During that same time, there were protest marches against the new president in all the big cities..
And now I hear that the DC hookers are organizing a march as well..
Happening next week.. Dubbed as the Million Moan March..
Right now the planners are getting laid... I mean the plans are getting laid.. Sorry..
And I see all these "protestors" holding up signs saying, "Build Bridges, Not walls."
A quick google search brings up thirty five bridges in the state of Texas alone..
Why do we need more bridges if you are going to sneak/swim across the river somewhere else anyway?
I think the wall is a better deal.. In some places..
Maybe we can close some bridges, and take the money saved to build the wall?
I also saw a commercial the other day, that said if I had this flashlight, I won't need a gun..
Let me think about that.. Ah... No..
I don't care if it is bright enough to blind a bear..
If you point a light at someone that has a gun, do you think they might know where you are??
Cause it is possible that they might have a gun.. They might not have seen the commercial about the flashlight..
I don't care if it has a strobe light..
With my luck, if I turned it on, two seconds later I'd hear some techno music, and then Miley Cyprus would show up, in some unwashed spandex underwear, last worn by Elton Jon, and start twerking in the beam..
Naw.. I'm sticking with my Colt..
Well my wrist in telling me that I need to quit..
You probably think I should have quit at the end of the fishing talk..
Some of you probably did..
In any case, if you see a good weather window, and have the time and inclination, you might want to come down and wet a line..
Maybe you can be one of the many that have said, "Son of a Bitch! That bastard broke my line!"
And hopefully, before too long, I'll see you on the water!
February 17, 2017: It's no secret that the Texas Bass Nation is in town this week.. And I'd like to thank them for kicking our ass for the last five days..
Thanks to all of you for stopping in. It has been our pleasure talking with all of you, and thanks for choosing Zapata and Falcon Lake for your state tourney.
Sorry about that wind on Tuesday and Wednesday..
I have not been writing much, and typing is still difficult.. My left wrist is still messing with me and while I think it is improving, it still sucks..
Fishing is good for the most part, and as long as it stays warm, and the wind will let you on the water, I believe it is only going to get better.
The squarebill bite is still strong, and shallow big fish are being caught at a decent rate.
We have been dealing with pre-fishermen all week and I am sure that I am not getting the entire story.
But I probably will in the next few days. I have not been on the water in 18 days.. So first hand knowledge I do not have.. And it is pissing me off..
Small soft plastics are still doing good when it comes to the flipping and C-rig bite. A shakey head with a small offering has been doing good as well.. Go figure..
It is not unusual when we get some folks from other parts of the state down here they fish a lot differently than we do as locals.. And many times they catch fish that we just do not..
Show em something different..
We have sold a bunch of crankbaits as well, and every color under the sun. There's a lot of theories out there..
Weigh in today starts at three, and I plan on going down and seeing what gets brought to the scales..
And hopefully in a few days I'll be back to slinging bullshit.. And maybe even going fishing..
Come see us.. The spawn is on..
If Mother Nature will let us out there to chase em..
February 14, 2017: Happy Valentines day! In case you forgot..
The wind is blowing like a bitch today from the north.. Yesterday it was howling from the south..
We have a town full of fishermen standing on the sidelines for the most part.. It's pretty bad out there..
But before the wind the fish were biting pretty damn good..
The spawn is/was on this last few days, and a lot of shallow fish have been caught.
Square bills, spinner baits, Carolina rigs, and flipping baits have been good on the shallow hardwoods. Long gravel points and ledges have had scads of little fish on a lot of them.
It has been good.. Till this wind shit started.. Now it is a bit tough to fish, and my info has really slowed down.
I am still typing with one hand, and have not fished in two weeks. I am more than a little frustrated..
The lake is holding steady. Water temps were about 70 degrees before last night.. This front won't be long lived.. And conditions should be better starting tomorrow.
Like to tell you more.. But this typing with one hand sucks.
I'm working on it.
February 10, 2017: In the last couple of days the fish have gone apeshit..
Lots of shallow fish.. Water temps at or near 70 in the PM..
I have pics of some whoppers.. Will post when I can type.
I'd come if I could..
February 7, 2017: Sorry it has been a while.. My left hand and arm are killing me. I there a carpal tunnel doc in the house?
Fishing is good and bad.. Some struggling.. Some catching them good..
This is gonna be short.. If you are flipping to spawning fish, pay attention..
The bite is really subtle.
Cranks in chartreuse and red have been good.. Fairly shallow..
This is all second hand info.
Shit.. Hurts to even make a joke about it..
Hope to give a real report again soon..
So much ammo and no place to shoot.. Haven't been able to put both hands on my manhood in over a week..
Nice weather and I am stuck in here.. Sucks.. Come catch the ones I cain't..
January 31, 2017: It's been a pretty busy month around here, and some of the fishing has been good.. Some not so good.
The last few days have been a bit tough with the high pressure sitting on us, but it looks like things are going to turn around. The forecast for the next seven days looks too good to be true.. But they can't have it all wrong..
Low winds and highs in the low eighties.. Hopefully the water will warm a bit over the next few days..
Yesterday the water at the state park was about 63.5°, and while that sounds warm, a few degrees up will really help the spawn come along..
I still say that the spawn is the toughest time of year to fish.. One day to the next is hard to predict.. Especially if you add in all the changes we have had in water temps and levels for the last month..
Speaking of water levels, Sunday morning at midnight the water releases from Amistad were greatly reduced. And while we were still coming up at a decent clip yesterday, that influx is diminishing rapidly.
We'll see what the next few days bring in releases from Falcon.
The water we caught really helped the ramps though, and launching is fine at both ends of the lake..
Yesterday Jay and I went and launched at the state park. We wanted to check out a spot or two down there, and I wanted to see how the ramp was working.
The ramp was excellent.. The fishing was not so good.
We caught some fish, but nothing to talk about.. And all small fish. Other than a few fat crappie we ran into in the Tigers..
We also fished a couple of spots in the Salanaias, and there were several boats in there as well.. We fished some notorious spots with little to no luck, and we even went as far back in Krueger creek as you can go, flipping the woods. Kinda muddy back there, but pretty out front..
Overall I'd say the fishing was pretty crappy.. But a late day rally made us feel a little better..
I'm embarrassed to say it, but if you are having trouble getting bit on these high sky days.. Put on a drop shot and shake the hell out of it.. On some rock.. Odds are you'll get bit.. Sooner or later..
We threw crankbaits, Carolina rigs, Texas rigs, and dropshot's.. Caught more on the dropshot's than anything else..
Of course this was another expeditionary trip.. We hauled a lot of water for the amount of fish we caught..
Status quo for me here lately..
I have heard reports of good numbers of fish off ledges and rocks, but not a lot of flipping fish right now. I don't know why these fish are not up there spawning off these creek edges.. Maybe they are as confused as we are with the conditions changing what seems like daily..
Maybe this week will get em going..
Here we are four months into Sharelunker season and still not one fish over thirteen pounds has been turned in across the state of Texas..
Of course I am the last one surprised.. Maybe some have been caught that we haven't heard about.. But I doubt it..
"No man, having caught a large fish, goes home thru the alley.."
It usually takes me badmouthing the SL program to make one show up..
There you go PAW.. I just threw you a hanging slider at 86 way up in the zone..
I wonder if this will be the year that not one gets turned in..
Maybe the SL program can go Detroit Lions this year.. I know it is not easy..
Surely someone minnow fishing will have one swallow a crappie.. It's gotta happen..
But you can rest assured that there are just not many of them out there..
Well we are now fully five months since the big fish kill here in the Veleno. What have we heard from TPWD?
Crickets man.. Crickets..
I wonder what a guy's day at the kills and spills team at PAW consists of.. How many kills and spills are there a year in Texas? Must be a shitload.. Especially if it takes five freakin months and counting to issue a report..
Funny I have not heard of any others though..
I try to be a fan of TPWD.. But it is getting harder and harder..
It is a beauracratic and political minefield with no oversight except that which they decide to put on themselves..
It is certainly more of a political machine than an agent for the sportsman.. With a topheavy salary system, management that asks first what will look the best to the public, and little regard for the actual mechanics of what will improve hunting and fishing in the state of Texas..
It is agenda driven, with many a "good ol boy" having come and gone thru the system..
It's good to be king..
At least it looks that way from where I'm sitting..
January 26, 2017: Somebody stole at least a week of days out of this month.. It's almost over!
We've got a new President, a record high stock market, liberals on full scale meltdown, spawning fish, spring coming, and business opportunities expanding all over the place..
I am personally starting an export business.. Selling grappling hooks down into Mexico.. I'll let you know when we will make our IPO..
Meanwhile back at the ranch..
I reckon you saw the results from the Bass Champs tournament last weekend. I'm not gonna call them spectacular, but they were decent.. And the winning weight was somewhere around what I figured.. Easy for me to say.. I never made a prediction.. I know..
I did expect that there would be three or four thirty pound bags..
Congrats to the father and son team Tompkins.. Awesome to see a family duo win. And great guys too..
Rumor is that most of the good fish caught came on a crankbait.. I interviewed.. Ok I bullshitted with a lot of the fishermen at weigh in, and a lot of them told me the same thing.. Mid depth cranks on edges of drops and ledges.. Some deeper than others.. A lot of folks flipping caught limits.. But it appears that the bigger fish liked the hard baits better last weekend..
On Sunday, the day after the tourney, the wind blew so hard I saw a chicken lay the same egg twice.. And it did the water color no good on any corner of the lake.
Currently there is no clear water above the number eight marker.. At least right around there..
Once you get down to Pierce's or so it starts looking pretty darn good..
I fished Tuesday up the Salado, and the water looked pretty crappy.. We caught a few fish, but it was a tough outing. The fish we did catch were nice chunky three to four pounders.. But only a handfull.
I'm going out a bit later for a boat ride down south and a maybe a little fishing.. Once it warms up..
Every year at this time we have the same conversation in the store.. About four times a day..
When are them bass gonna spawn.. Well the answer is that they are trying.. But every year we have the same things going on..
Warm water.. Cold water.. Falling water.. Rising water.. Big winds.. Dirty water..
If you have ever heard the joke about Hurricane Gussie then you can relate.. Cain't nobody make love in weather like this..
The new moon is in two days.. Water temps are in the middle sixties.. There should be a group of fish on the nest as we speak.. Of course we had a north wind yesterday.. And more on the way..
It just looks like we are going to have a spread out spawn this year.. Just like every other.. I am sure we will have spawning fish into late March..
Although currently there is nothing for the fry to hide in.. Unless a bunch of water gets here soon, we are going to be basically missing a year class this spring.. But that's nature.. And it is not an uncommon occurrence down here at Falcon.
The lake is on a very slow rise.. And I mean slow.. But that's better than falling.. There is still a lot of current passing thru the lake.. Which is keeping the top half mucked up.. As was discussed before..
I have no idea what the future holds in store as far as water goes. The IWBC acts like it is top secret as to what is planned.. Why?
You'd think they would have a plan in place as to what they intend to do. And they would publish it.. So other factions could plan on what they might do..
Government at its best, I am sure.. Maybe they just do it to piss me off.. I know it pisses you off too.
TPWD has still not released a report on the fish kill that happened in the Veleno.. Or any plans on what they plan to do about it..
There's another government entity that has continually fallen short. More on that in a forthcoming post..
The fact is, that whatever logic and common sense would dictate.. You can pretty much depend on the fact that government will do the opposite.. Or nothing. Whichever is easiest..
Here in Zapata, we don't get a lot of things that the civilized world gets.. But we get some awesome sunrises and sunsets.. And yesterday evening was pretty epic from my deck.
This pic doesn't even start to do it justice.. And it's a little fuzzy.. But I thought I'd include it..
Look for fishing to improve with the weather.. When it stays warm.. The fishing will be hot.. If you are planning a trip, and can come when you want.. Then the world is your oyster.. Look for a warming trend and get your ass down here..
And I'll let you know what I hear.. And see .. And do..
For whatever it is worth..
See you when you get here..
Jan 21, Part Deaux..
Bass Champs update.. These results are unofficial!! First place so far.. Tompkins and Tompkins II, 30.98.. Second, Vance and Serma with 28.13, and third Gonzalez and Saldana with 26.97..
Big bass was a 11.94 I believe, and there were several over ten..
Twenty plus stringers over twenty..
Once again these results are not official!! But they're close if not!
January 21, 2017: It's about noon around here, and the sun is shining, we are heading for 90° degrees this afternoon, and the winds are light.. Perfect day to fish in January..
Water levels are steady for the time being.. Fish are less nervous about nest building.. Reports of good fishing the last two days..
The Bass Champs tourney is going on.. One hundred sixty teams.. Plus or minus a couple..
Weigh in at about three.. I'll let you know what happens..
Wind is supposed to blow tonight and howl tomorrow.. But for the time being it is awesome..
Might be some big sacks weighed in..
January 19, 2017: It sure seems like I fished a lot more when I didn't own a fishing shop.. I have been trying to get on the water all week and have not made it. Don't look like I will either..
We had a couple days of wind, but not un fishable wind.. But I have been busy.. Getting ready for your visit..
Among other things..
If you are coming this weekend, you know that Bass Champs is going to be in town. That means the county ramp will be a busy place on Saturday. So if you are not fishing the tournament you might consider launching at Beacon or at the state park.
And while the weather forecast looks great for Saturday, Sunday is supposed to be a windy bitch.. So windy that the Bass Federation postponed their tournament till a later date.
The lake has leveled off the last four days or so, and we are holding pretty steady for the most part. That should be good for fish that want to spawn.. And in turn good for fishermen that want to catch spawning fish.
Not that it is necessarily good for a spawning fish to be caught.. It is what it is..
There's nothing for the fry to hide in anyway. Barring a miracle, this years hatch is going to be 99% eaten in the first thirty days..
Rocks and hardwoods don't provide much cover from predators.. And the cormorants are going to have a field day..
Good thing we had a good summer spawn.. Funny how Mother Nature is always thinking ahead..
I had a girlfriend in the seventies that was named Mother Nature.. She was always thinking a head as well..
Anyway, the reports have been pretty good this week, with some folks catching some nice stringers. And a lot of it has been pretty random. A couple of guys had first time to the spot big stringers.. And we have seen a bunch of quality fish pictures.. Not a lot of tens, but some, and a lot of five and six pounders that look ready to bust..
Question is whether the fish that a lot of folks found the last few weeks be there on Saturday..
We'll see in about 48 hours..
Well in a little over 24 hours, we'll have a new president.. And from the looks of it maybe a new era and at least the possibility of a slight turn to the right.. Much to the chagrin of the elite leftists.. Who are in full blown meltdown..
But keep in mind Donald Trump is not that conservative.. He'll spend a buck or two as well.. But maybe what he spends it on will suit the right a bit more..
I saw that the genius that is Jabba the Rosie opened her mouth the other day. And instead of sticking half of Sara Lee's inventory in there, like usual, she said that we need to declare Martial Law until they can figure out a way to de-legitimize the election of Donald Trump..
That sounds more like something you'd hear coming from someone in the hierarchy of North Korea than in America..
Remember Jabba.. This is America.. Where dumb ass fishermen like me can have a blog.. Where we can own guns.. Where two men can legally do each other in the butt.. Where people can kill unborn babies..
Where a man can go into office being rich before he was elected..
Although it is usually after they have been there a while till they are rich..
Where the voters decide who is president, not just a chosen few..
And yes.. Even a place where fat, untalented, lesbians can make a good living.. Nobody is coming to take away your licker license.. So relax..
And the rest of you snowflakes can kiss my ass..
I don't necessarily celebrate the inauguration of Donald Trump.. But I will raise a glass the the departure of the Obamminator..
Good times ahead America!
I gotta go put up my new flags..
January 17, 2017: It has been so windy around here, that the Rio Grande has actually been running upstream. And that ain't much of an exaggeration. The white bass are wanting to run upstream, but they ain't sure which way that is..
Thankfully the south wind has blown itself out.. At least for a few days.
After taking about four feet of water off the lake, some water from Amistad is showing up and it is mitigating the drop in water levels. It is a little early for me to say that we are going to hold steady, but we'll see in the next few days. For the last 24 hours we have remained about steady, at 268.33, or 32.87 feet low..
Meanwhile, all the lakes in the Conchos chain in Mexico are about full..
Naw.. We're not getting screwed by the Mexicans..
Water management by IWBC is a joke..
While we are on the topic of water levels, let's talk about boat ramps..
The county ramp is down to two lanes.. The two to the east. There is plenty of room for two if you can back a trailer..
I know, I know.. Some folks cain't..
The state park ramp is down to just the middle lane. There is about five feet of water in the ditch, so while it is not optimal, it is still workable off the concrete.
Like I said, we'll see what the water level does.. But we should be good to go on both ramps thru the weekend.. And hopefully we'll gain a bit back.
It seems that I talk more about water than I do about fishing.. Well one don't happen without the other..
But this lake has been mismanaged for so long, that it is a wonder that we catch what we do.. A testament to Mother Nature..
Oh I guess you can say that no one has ever run out of tap water.. And that the farmers have never wanted for water in the valley.. No matter the water levels in Falcon..
So in that sense I guess they are managing it just fine.. And it is true that the people at IWBC once said, "I don't care if another fish is ever caught out of Falcon Lake.."
And they don't..
I know it is not possible to satisfy all the wants of all the people all the time. But these folks sure do a shitty job of keeping any water in Falcon..
In a fantasy world, where I had complete control over Falcon, I could build you the greatest fishery ever conceived..
I'd keep it full for two years, and I'd drop it fifteen feet for two years.. I'd put about a million Floridas in it a year..
I'd kill every cormorant on the lake, and I'd reduce the gar population by half.
No fish over eight pounds could be kept.. And no fish under twelve inches could be thrown back..
It would be a toadfest.. No bullshit..
I know it can't happen.. But what is a man without dreams??
Fishing around here has been all over the board, as you might expect with all the crazy shit going on..
The dropping water has exposed a lot of dirty banks, and forty mile an hour winds have pounded the banks with waves and turned a lot of areas into cappuccino..
Fortunately the crazy winds have stopped the last two days, and things are much improved. But be aware that there is some off colored water on the top of the lake.
Once you get to marker nine or so, water clarity is much improved.. And still downright nice from Pierces south. There are areas down south that are not as clear as usual, but still very good looking water..
There is as lot of water passing thru the lake, and current is visible most everywhere.. You might use that to your advantage.. These fish love to set up looking into the current on the tips and backsides of points..
It would take every leg and both pinchers on a crawdad to hold onto the bottom right now..
Crawdads.. First on earth to use Power Poles..
I have gotten a lot of spotty reports on the fishing.. Some good.. Some not so good.. But a few folks have happened onto a pile of fish and caught some nice stringers.
These fish want to spawn.. Water temps are mid to high sixties, depending on where you are.
If the water level stabilizes, like I think it is going to, then I believe a lot more nest building and lovemaking will be happening this week..
Several folks that were in the store this morning said that they have had a lot of fish moving the bait but not wanting to eat it.. Like I was talking about a few days back.. Typical of spawning fish.
So pay attention to your line. The bastards are sneaky and they'll drop it before you know they have it..
I would think that if the water quits falling, water that is a bit in the back of a creek, or protected from the current would be the places to look for spawning fish. Dense cover is virtually non existent, so target flats with wood and... Well wood.. Cause that's about all there is..
A square bill is still catching fish, near rock or bounced off of hardwoods. Most folks are flipping plastics to shallow spawning area hardwoods, which makes perfect sense..
But not all the fish are spawning now.. A few are.. But it is just beginning..
There are still those offshore dragging rigs and throwing deep diving cranks, and their reports have been as varied as the shallow water fishermen.
I have not fished since last Thursday, (5 days ago) as being busy and high winds have kept me in the shop. I should have went yesterday but duty calls..
I fished the Salado and I caught a decent number of fish. Half of them on the same point.. Most on a square bill, a few on plastics..
I am not sure what to expect from the Bass Champs boys this weekend.. I think they are gonna catch some fish. The forecast looks awesome, and if water levels remain constant, a bunch of these fish could be on the beds..
That would assume that folks will be fishing shallow..
I am sure there will be a deep water contingent out there as well..
Even with all the recent water and wind fluctuations, I think we'll see some big stringers..
We'll see in a few days..
And we hope to see you in a few days..
If you need a Mexican License, call me and I'll have it ready for you when you get here.. It is liable to be a madhouse around here on Friday, and you can save yourself some time by having one in will call..
See you then!
January 11, 2017: Man I am having trouble typing and writing 2017.. And putting 2018 as the expiration date on a Mexican fishing license.. Forget it..
But here we are in a new era.. Ending the oppressive hold that the powers of evil have had on us..
No I am not talking about the Obamma administration's fingers being pried off the keys to the white house..
I'm talking about winter.. I'm officially declaring it over..
Cause I hate that shit..
We froze twice down here last week, something that has not happened in over a thousand days.. Maybe it'll kill the skeeters.. It did a number on a lot of plants..
What it also did was back the fish off that were making a move to the shallows. Add some dropping water levels and there ain't no fish where I was fishing last week..
Another week and there won't be any water there either..
I have talked to a lot of people this week.. And the reports are about what you'd expect.
Fishing has slowed, and the water temps yesterday were just under sixty degrees. We should continue to warm up for the next week and the fish should respond accordingly.
My theory is that with the falling water levels, this first wave of spawning fish are going to set up somewhat deeper to spawn than they normally would, if the lake level was stable. I reckon it don't take a rocket scientist to figure that out..
But I am thinking that six to eight foot of water might be a good place to start.. With ample shallow and deep water easily accessible..
I have been stuck in the store for four days, but I am gonna hit it hard tomorrow and see what happens.. We do have a little wind to contend with this week..
Fish have still been caught this the last couple of days, and a Carolina Rig is something you should have rigged up.. A little fluke or a lizard is a good choice.. Chartreuse is still a good thing.. Spike It or something like it is a good idea somewhere on your bait.
With the current going thru the lake, a lot of folks have been fishing the rocks near the dam with deep crankbaits and jigs and C-rigs.. Something you can get down there.
These fish like the current created in that area, so it is a good place to try. The steep drops on the Texas side near marker three are favorites of mine, (and a lot of other folks) and they seem to produce well when there is a lot of water moving thru the lake as well.
I have not been there, but I will when the wind subsides.. Probably late April..
In any case, the fish are just starting to thaw out today, and maybe there will be a lot more activity as the water warms..
Like I said.. I'll test em tomorrow..
Donald Trump will take over the operations in Washington in less than two weeks, and I am ready for the change.. As are a lot of you, I suppose..
It is no secret that I never liked Obamma, and it is no secret that he liked himself enough for everybody.. Although there were and are certainly are plenty of Obamma lovers out there.
He is the most narcissistic son of a gun I have ever seen.. The favorite word in his vocabulary is I.. Followed by me..
Hopefully he will just be a bad memory before very long.
But what I find interesting is the fear and hate for Donald Trump by the left.. After all, two years ago he was a liberal supporting liberals.. Mostly..
A New York liberal at that..
I reckon they think he is going to set up some interment camps for the lesbians, gays, queers, transvestites, trans genders, actors and actresses, black lives matter members, all other women that are not a part of any of the other groups mentioned here, anarchists, illegal immigrants, college students, thirty year olds living in their parents basements, and lazy rich white kids with their cell phones attached to their noses..
Relax.. It ain't gonna happen.. Go pet your hamster and calm down..
I am sorry if you are part of the movement and I left your group out..
What you guys are going to have to do is suck it up and accept the fact that your candidate did not win.. That she was a shitty candidate.. And most of you are a bunch of pussies..
I don't recall any riots and calls to arms when Barry won..
Go shave, learn some people skills, and get a job..
I hear McDonalds is hiring..
January 7, 2017: The new year is well under way, and this first week is a blur looking back.. If this year goes by as fast as the last week then we'll have this conversation again pretty damn quick..
But Happy New Year, and I reckon it will be this week before the masses truly get back to work..
Not me.. I been bustin' it..
I fished several times last week.. Before the cold weather got here. And the fishing was good.. And then I went hunting a couple of days.. Cause it was too cold to fish..
Of course as I write this it is about thirty something degrees outside, and has been for two days.. This stuff sucks..
And I am positive that these Falcon fish don't like it either.. And evidently everyone in town yesterday did not like it either.. There was not one boat at the county ramp yesterday at noon..
And I don't think anybody was missing anything either..
But let's go back in time.. No, not to prom night 1974... That conjures up some shit.. Shit that I promised never to talk about..
Dammit.. Now without thinking I have already broke one of my new year's resolutions.. Not to use bad language on this blog in 2017.. I'm tying a string around my finger as I type..
Anyway.. I think it was Tuesday.. But I am not sure.. It was shirt sleeve weather and I was out there.. It was awesome.. The sun was shining.. The birds were singing.. I couldn't remember what Rosie looks like..
And the fish were biting..
I started out on the main lake point where the Veleno turns into lake.. Right by marker eleven..
There is a gravel bar/shell bed on the end of it and it has been a great Carolina rig spot.. With a good tungsten weight you can feel every nook and cranny.. As a matter of fact I am pretty sure I felt some pearls in some of those open clam shells..
But I digress.. The fish were there on that day and I was using that Chartreuse pepper lizard I been talking about.. And whackin' em..
I only caught three nice fish, but none over four pounds.. (seems to be a reoccurring theme lately) But I caught several more keepers on this first stop.. Good way to start the day..
Next stop I went to a creek in Diablo where nobody fishes.. Well almost.. On the right hand side bout most of the way back there.. But not way back there..
And I did what I like to do.. Flipped hardwoods.. All of em.. From dirt out to six feet.. And found fish on them in all depths.. But not on all trees..
And these fish were typical of bedding fish.. Most were males.. And they would pick the bait up and move it.. They would not eat it.. At least not often..
Half of the bites I got were un-sensable.. That is to say that you could not feel the bite or see the string move..
It was more of a mental transmission sense I have developed.. Kinda like the Vulcan Mind Meld but without actually putting you hands on the fishes fins..
You knew the bastards were there.. Just looking at it.. And about the time they were going to pick it up by the tiniest piece of the appendage on the bait..
Well that's when I would set the hook.. More often than not hooking them on the outside of the mouth..
Now a little of the above might be an exxagggeration.. Some might call it a damn lie..
But if you have been around these males when they have no interest in eating anything, but they want nothing in their nesting area, then you know the kind of bite I am talking about..
I would love to have had the water stay warm.. Cause about today them females would probably have been in there with them..
Girlfriend delivery delay.. It's freakin cold..
Well after I left that small creek, I headed back to the very back of the Diablo.. So far back I felt like a suppository..
I flipped my way in and out, in some of the same looking water as I had all the action in just before.. And I had two bites.. Both males..
But it looks awesome back there.. Or it did anyway..
Since I have been back there, we have been robbed of a foot of water. These folks start earlier every year, and as soon as the last firecracker went off, they opened the gates..
I know the reason Falcon lake is here.. And so do you..
It is a game preserve for the gar and the cormorants..
But more than that, it is here for irrigation..
But then dammit aren't all the lakes in the chain here for the same thing?
Seems like they could share in the water burden just a bit.. Especially being that several of the Mexican lakes are at full pool, more are close, and the biggie, Boquilla, is at 93%!!
We do not have the balls as a country to enforce the treatys we have with Mexico.. It's embarrassing..
And we on Falcon are the last link on the chain.. And the actual spigot to the valley..
You would think that they could pass us along some water..
I say this every year.. When they are pulling water off the top of our spawning bass..
But don't worry.. I am sure it will get worse..
Bitch, Bitch, Bitch..
In other news, TPWD has still not released a report on the fish kill in the Veleno.. How many months has it been?
Why do we depend on government for so much.. When all they do is mismanage shit?
Ok.. On another note.. I have updated the tournament page to detail the tourneys we know are coming.. And if your club or organization is coming to Falcon, please let us know and we'll add you to our schedule.
Media Bass is returning to Falcon twice this year, as they have started a Falcon and Amistad circuit.. Been a while since we have heard from them.
Bass Champs is only a couple of weeks away..
Come on sunshine..
We'll have all the goodies you need when you get here..
And if you want to make it easy on yourself, call us if you need a Mexican license and we'll have it ready when you walk in.
We are not far away from some spawning fish.. Will it be on in two weeks? Maybe..
I'll keep you posted..
December 29, 2016: Another day, another weather change. It sure was nice yesterday!
Today is a reversal of fortune so to speak, at least from the fishing perspective.
We have a stiff wind blowing around here, and it ain't from the south. And yesterdays temperatures in the eighties has been replaced by sixty something. But supposedly it is a short lived front.
I fished Monday afternoon and most of the day yesterday. And boy was it nice. Prior to last weekend, the water temps were in the high fifties, and the low sixties on the south end of the lake.
Yesterday we saw water temps back around sixty eight.. And it had the fish biting.
I talked to a lot of folks that fished yesterday, and a high percentage of them caught a lot of fish. Hey! Including me!
But we did not find fish everywhere as we decided to look for spawning fish off creek channel edges and flats. And while we fished some spots that are notorious spawning areas, we found only a few males up there scouting the area.
What did best for us were shallow rocks near the bank. Which ain't way out of character for me.
We fished from marker eleven at the the mouth of the Veleno down to marker seven at Pierces. And we hit a lot of spots in-between.. Back in the creeks.. And on flats just off the river channel..
Some places had fish.. Some did not..
We caught several fish that looked like they would pop if you stuck em with a needle. None of them were over five pounds, but surely they were egg laden sow bass that want to do their thing..
With some of these fish, it is gonna be real quick..
I have been talking about a square bill I have been throwing. A 1.5 that is chartreuse and black on the back.
Man that thing has been money for me for a couple of months. And I've got this one in particular.
Did you ever have a bait that just seems to catch fish when an identical looking bait just don't do it as good? Man I got one.
It is missing its eye on the right side and has caught a hundred fish and counting, and I have gone to great lengths lately to get it back. But at least it don't dive too deep. I hate getting water in my ears..
I polished it last night..
In any case it is called a Chatahoochie special.. Don't leave home without it..
And speaking of Chartreuse It is a good idea to have some on whatever you are throwing. Surely seems to trigger the fish..
Kind of like a millennial hearing the word, "Trump".. Or "work"..
Just sets em off..
Chartreuse pepper in a senko or a lizard is also a great bait.. I was throwing a lizard on a C-rig and having good luck with it yesterday as well.
A buddy of mine whacked em yesterday on a senko in one to two feet of water..
Throw it.. Even if you don't like it..
The water looked great everywhere we went yesterday. Not two feet of visibility, but that awesome Falcon Green I always talk about.. The water is slightly more turbid above the Salado.
If you find a rocky bank with a little drop just off of it, more than likely it will have fish on it. And if there is a bit of a breeze blowing on it, odds are that there are several fish on it.
The bite has still been very light on the plastics and on the crankbait.. If you are flipping and something feels just a bit weird.. Yank..
The crankbait bite, at least mine, has just been the rod loading up..
We threw a spinnerbait in chart/white and it seemed like the fish would knock slack in the line, but not eat it.. Whatever that means. Maybe they just didn't like it being where it was.. Maybe it was the wrong color.. Hell if I know.. Maybe they were just hitting the blades..
But it is a lot more weedless than the crankbait..
In any case, on the warm water days the fish have been pretty darn active. And I think about Sunday and Monday it ought to be really good.
I have also heard that C-rigging a fluke or a lizard on long sloping gravel points has really whacked the numbers. Of course your results may vary.. But if you find a school of em, you can catch em every cast.
I hope that you get a chance to get down here and get you some.
It was a great Christmas gathering of the Bendele clan at the ranch last weekend.. We were wearing short britches and t-shirts. Pretty formal attire for a Christmas gathering..
We did not make snowmen or snow angels.. But we did play some basketball and chunk the prerequisite new football around..
We did not have to move any snow, but we did move some hay..
I hope you got to spend some time with your family and followed my advice from the previous post.
Thanks to all of you who sent Christmas wishes our way. I hope I answered everybody..
The new year is only three days away, and I am looking forward to a great 2017. We hope to see you here after you get that tree out to the curb or back in the closet.. (Is it ok to say that?)
Optimism seems to be running high in the good ole US of A, and lets hope that translates into a prosperous year for us all.
And don't worry about all the naysayers.. To me that is all balloon juice..
We are keeping our company here in the US, and that will be saving two more jobs..
But I am sure I am doing the work of three..
Happy New Year Yall!
See you soon!
December 21, 2016: You know I hear every year around here that it just doesn't feel like Christmas because it is seventy five degrees, sunny, and there is no snow, sleigh tracks, or ice-cicles hanging off the roof edges..
Well I hope you bastards are happy this year..
I hate this cold, gloomy, wet shit with a passion.. I'm getting a case of the redass..
And with that being said, it is probably not too hard to figure that there is not lot of fishing going on around here.. Only by those who are actually used to having a White Christmas..
They think it is balmy..
There have been a couple of groups down that have been on the lake the last few days. And I'll have to give them a merit badge for persistence.. But like they said, when this is the time you have off, this is the time you have off..
Water temps are in the fifties, and you know what that does for Flacon bass.. They are no more a fan of the cold than I.
But that don't mean you can't catch a few. And the people that are fishing are doing just that. No one I have talked to has told me that they are tearing them up. But they are catching some nice fat pre-spawn fish in the mix.
We have been promised sun for the last two days, and we have not seen any.. But maybe it will peek out this afternoon. And if it does I am going to brave the cold water temps and go chunk something chartreuse at em..
The last time I fished the surface temp was 59° and the fish were still pretty active. Since then we have had some real cold, and cloudy days.. Those cold nights followed by no sun really tears the water temps a new asshole.. And I am afraid that what I see today will probably be somewhere in the middle fifties..
That don't mean they will just quit eating.. But they tend to do it in short spurts..
Like deer hunting.. You just gotta be there..
Christmas is a special time of year. Loved by some and loathed by others. I love the season, but maybe for different reasons than a lot of you..
In today's secular world, a lot of folks think more of Christmas as time off, and maybe a financial struggle.. Stress over having to get a lot of things done.
Stress over travel.. Stress over family relationships. Stress over money.. Stress over keeping up with the Jones'..
What did their kids get that mine didn't..
I yi Yi!!
About five years ago I got to the point that I couldn't take it any more.. So I quit taking it.. And decided to give it all away..
Hugs and Handshakes.. And I might throw in a fresh smoked sausage.. If you show up at the right time..
My Dad passed away just a bit over eight years ago.. And though I have tried, I have not been able to come close to replacing him around the ranch at Thanksgiving and Christmas time..
He loved the Holidays.. And always made you feel welcomed and wanted.. No matter who you were.. Of course my Mom is no different..
On many occasions we would have guests that were friends of our kids, and friends of nieces and nephews that were stuck away from home for the holidays, and they brought them out to the ranch. And we just included them in whatever we were doing..
Making Sausage.. Shooting clays.. Chopping wood.. Whatever..
And somehow a present was always under the tree with their name on it..
And seeing the graciousness of my parents so many years, has brought me to the conclusion that I may never get to the point of having the compassion and selflessness that they possess..
But I'm trying..
I'm crying like a baby as I type this.. So I am going to just say that I wish for you and your family the best and Merriest of Christmases' that you can have. And a lot of that depends on you!
Even if you are struggling with your family relationships, put them aside and let Christ take the wheel for the weekend.
He can change your life. I'm living proof.
He changed mine years ago...
God Bless You! and Merry Christmas to you and thanks from all of us here at Falcon Lake Tackle.
2017 is gonna be a great year on Falcon..
Hope to see you then!
December 14, 2016: Alright.. This shit ain't funny anymore.. If I don't see some sun pretty soon, I'm gonna come unhinged..
I'm getting pastier by the minute..
This shit here is the exact reason that I hate winter.. Cold.. Cloudy. Misty.. Rainy.. = Sucks!!
And looking at the forecast it is about to get worse.. A splinter of non-global warming air is headed our way on Sunday and it is gonna turn to real shit.. Highs in the forties..
The forecasters have said that we would clear off the last few days.. All we have seen is soup..
If you are looking for a window it looks like this Friday and Saturday will be our best shot for the next week.. That is is you can believe the weather forecasters.. Whose track record is worse than Obammas when it comes to telling the truth..
I fished yesterday and of course I fished the top of the lake. And being the weather is so iffy we did not go out till 10:30. And we fished till about 2:30.. Bout my normal..
It was supposed to clear off but it stayed cloudy and misty for most of the trip.. Of course when you are catching fish you can overlook a lot of stuff..
The lake is still on a slow rise, and there is some debris floating in the river above marker thirteen. Not bad, but some.. If you will remember a few weeks back I was saying that the old concrete bridge abutment was out of the water about six inches.. Now it is under the water about two inches and you damn better know where it is if you head up the river..
Any of you that have sidescanned the old monolith probably think that there is a heck of a rockpile around it.. Them ain't rocks.. They're lower units..
I have given the coordinates to this hazard many times and you can find them on the Ramps and Hazards page linked on my home page. If you haven't punched them in already..
The lake is up to 273, or 28.2 feet low. That's over ten feet lower than we were at this time last year.. If you're keeping score..
Water temps have taken a drastic drop in the last week, shedding about seven degrees on the top of the lake. We saw water under sixty degrees most all day yesterday. I heard that temps on the south end were sixty three or so in the Salanaias..
But that seventy degree water is a thing of the past.. For a while anyway.
These cloudy days and cool nights have really cooled the water, and it can make for some foggy mornings on the lake around here..
That being said, the fishing has been decent. Everybody that I have talked to is fishing totally different than me. Most are throwing Carolina rigs in the deepest water they can find. With a super fluke tied on.. And they have had decent luck, but no better than the folks that are fishing shallow. At least that is my opinion.
I tore them a new ass yesterday throwing a 1.5 squarebill with a lot of chartreuse on it. And then I caught em on a chartreuse pepper lizard.. My buddy caught em on a Bama Craw Rage Craw..
Bites on the plastic were subtle for the most part..
I told you I was going to sit on one spot for an hour or two.. And we did.. And we caught thirteen fish off of it, including a 6-14, and a couple of four to five pounders we did not weigh.
We caught a total of twenty two fish, and missed six or eight.. The bastards are biting light.. Most of the time..
I know yall think I am crazy, but a lot of these fish are getting ready to spawn.. I did not cut any open, but I can tell you they are full of eggs.. This fish was about to bust..
Last week these two elevens were caught on the same day while these boys were fishing with Matt Reed..
And a young fellow brought this fish by to weigh this week.
8-15.. Don't worry.. She's back in the water..
Fact is that there have been quite a few good fish caught of late.. Fact is that I been too lazy to post a lot of em..
I know it is December and it is supposed to be cold and nasty. But that don't mean I gotta like it.. I'm hoping for a quick turnaround and a early spring.. Like by the end of December..
I tell you what.. This water is going to dip into the mid fifties probably next week, and the fish are gonna hate it.. But as soon as the water takes a few degree turn, the fish are going to go shallow.. er...
They might not spawn till the water gets back in the mid sixties.. But they are going to be close to where they plan to do it.. Just off the edges of the flats I am sure.. And creek channel edges is where I am going to be fishing in the next two weeks.. Certainly just after the new year.. Especially if we get a little warming trend..
There has been no new news about the shooting on the lake the other night.. No surprise.. Why would the government tell the public anything..
What the state has done, is bring down their two big DPS boats to waste a lot of tax dollars.. What a crock..
That's deterring a lot of crime I am sure.. Where have they been keeping them for the last year?
I think it is funny that you put a couple of assault vehicles on the lake in response to an incident.. If you want to get serious, why aren't you putting them on the lake all the time.. During the night..
Why aren't they putting armored vehicles in the streets of Houston, Dallas, and San Antonio after every murder occurs there?
I'll let you know if anything changes or if there is any new news.. But it is the SOP of the government to keep its citizens in the dark.. And I feel like a mushroom..
Only eleven days till Christmas!!
You better get busy..
December 12, 2016: It has been a foggy, nasty, cool few days around here, and across most of south Texas.. And it's is a foggy son of a gun this morning as well.. But nicer weather more akin to Zapata winters is on tap for much of this week..
Hell yeah! That's why we live here!
Well.. That's why I live here.. Well. That ain't the only reason..
Fishing has remained decent thru the crappy weather, according to folks I talked to this morning.
And all I have to go on right now is hearsay.. I have been watching the deer chase each other around for the last few days. And boy are they..
There are surely a lot of fish fattening up, some from groceries, some from egg growth, and some from both. I have been fishing the top of the lake as of late, as I have just not gotten down south of Diablo much in the last month or so..
And these fish up here are as fat as a Christmas hog. And mean as a Brahma bull..
You have to remember that it is winter down here.. Or our version of it anyway.
And the fish know it as well. And on a lot of days, these fish may not eat all day long. Or they might not eat all day long..
But they are gonna eat sometime. And you have to be there when they do.. If you wanna catch some fish, anyway..
A Carolina rig is catching a lot of fish I hear.. But I still ain't throwing one.
We caught em pretty good flipping the last time I was out.. And damn it I am a hard headed son of a bitch and I am gonna catch em my way.. Well sometimes..
We also caught some on a squarebill and a good one on a spinnerbait.. So I think it is more about hitting them in the head with it than anything else..
But I have a theory..
I'm going out tomorrow.. And I am gonna fish a spot where we caught two nice ones last week.. And I am gonna sit on it like a cluck hen and fish it with everything there is and see what happens..
Because I know there are fish there, and I am gonna see if there is something I am missing by not throwing exactly what they are wanting..
That's my theory anyway..
But long story short, it appears that there are still good numbers of fish being caught, but you gotta get out there and bust it..
I reckon that you are wondering what is happening with the investigation into the shooting on the lake last week..
Yeah.. So am I..
Meanwhile the media is out there stirring the pot saying that a fisherman was shot on Falcon Lake.. Again..
And the junior high kids on the forums are having a lot of fun with it as well..
I wish they'd get their facts straight.. Or think past the easy to assume story..
These guys were not out there fishing..
They had a couple of rods on the boat. But no tackle.. Subterfuge..
They were no more fishermen at the time, than two guys who stole a semi are truck drivers..
There is a difference between two guys out in a boat three hours after dark on Falcon, and two guys casting DD-22's along the riprap on the dam at 7:30 in the morning..
A distinction that the media can't seem to conjure..
And law enforcement has done little to enlighten them..
But that's the world we live in these days.. First one on the air with the story wins the prize.. Regardless of whether the facts are in order.. We can correct any mistakes later.. But they never do..
I really don't see much difference in this event and a murder on a side street. Unfortunately, they happen every day.
The fact that it took place on a lake is irrelevant. What is relevant is that these parties surely knew each other.
Whatever led to the altercation is not known to us.. But like the media we can also make assumptions.
And I am going to assume that they were not arguing about a fishing spot..
December 8, 2016: It is rainy, cold, and nasty around here this morning, and a lot more suited for making love than fishing.. But whichever you choose, I understand.
There were some good fish caught yesterday, a couple over eleven pounds, and I hear they were both caught on a Carolina rig.. A bit deeper..
I will share the pictures with you soon..
If you are a Falcon fan, you have probably heard the bad news about another killing on the lake. And unfortunately, I am not talking about fish.
A couple of nights ago, a man was shot, down on the south end of the lake.
From what I hear, and I have heard a lot, is that they launched at the state park.
There is not a clear and concise story of exactly what happened, but the long and short of it is that an altercation with another boat ensued, which led to the shooting.
This event occurred at around 8:45 at night, two and a half hours after sunset, allegedly in the middle of the lake.
There is another man that was in the boat who was not shot, and he knows exactly what happened. And allegedly there was another boat out there that witnessed the event, plus the boat that the shooter was in.
The big balloon at marker seven is said to have video of the event, but that is hearsay at this point as well.
There are all kinds of rumors swirling around out there. And until the Texas Rangers issue a statement, I am not going to have an opinion on exactly what happened.
But some of the details I have heard make me think that there is a lot more to this story than we have heard so far..
And a lot of what we have heard is conjecture and speculation.. Two things that I do not participate in spreading. If you want to hear more of that, you can Google up the local news..
But when something concrete comes out, I will pass it along.
In any case, I have a lot more questions than answers. I am sure we will get a few more details as time go on..
In the meanwhile, I'm not jumping to any conclusions.
I know what you are thinking, and you want to know if it is safe to fish Falcon. And I understand this story giving you pause.
But I still believe that if you fish in the daylight hours, are not up to no good, and mind your own business, that you are as safe or safer here, as any other lake in the state..
More details as they solidify..
I'm off to the ranch.. The rut is on..
December 5, 2016: I am not sure if I ever mentioned this, but I hate winter..
I despise a north wind.
A cold drizzle pisses me off. Two days of it can ruin my whole week..
Wearing blue jeans gives Mr. Wiggly a rash..
I'm fat enough already and wearing a coat makes me look like the Michelin Man..
A long sleeved T shirt was invented as a fashion statement and a protectant from gamma rays.. It was not actually concepted with the thought of keeping someone warm..
In short, cold weather is pure bullshit.. It's torture.. I hate it..
But we got it..
Short of swallowing a 1911, I am not sure what I can do about it.. So for the meanwhile, I guess I'll have to live with it..
But I am sure we are heading into the winter of my discontent..
Yesterday was a cold, blowing, misting, wet, nasty, raining, ugly period of semi non darkness.. And the only boat on the water at 9:30 was a Border Patrol boat with a cabin and a heater..
We got one inch of rain in the last two days, and that is a lot less than parts not far north of us, especially around San Antonio and a little west.. Up at the ranch we got over six inches in the last week..
Ought to be able to track them deer about now..
The river above us has a little water in it, and looking at it I'm gonna guess we'll catch about six inches in the big picture. There were some decent rains between us and Del Rio, and a little of it will run down hill to us.
Water temps this morning are around seventy I am sure, but you can bet that they are and will be falling in the next few days as this next front descends on us.
If you fish Falcon much you know that these fish do not like rising water, and they hate cold water. I am not gonna call our water temps cold yet, but I, and the fish know it is coming.
There is no doubt that the fishing is going to be spotty in the coming weeks. We will have some great days mixed in, but we will have some days that suck.. Which is not atypical for this time of year.
Christmas is only twenty days away, after all..
I can't even wrap my mind around that..
Before the cool front came in last week, fish were being caught using a variety of methods. But none of them were lights out. I fished Friday for about four hours, all on the upper end of the lake, and a buddy and I caught about ten fish, with three being over four pounds, but none five.
We were flipping hardwoods, as my theory of chunk rock went out the window. They were not on the rocks on Friday. We also caught a couple on a squarebill, and one nice fish on a chartreuse and white spinnerbait.
So you can see we caught em on several baits.. I think it was more about hitting them in the head.
And that seems to be the order of the day here lately.
I talk to a lot of people, and I will have to say that scattered is the best word I can use to describe the "Catching" right now.
You can catch fish, or not catch fish on any pattern and any location on the lake.
You're not gonna get skunked.. You're probably not gonna wreck em either.. But fishing hard might land you a big fat prespawn fattie.. And that is what keeps me going out there..
But I ain't going till it warms up a bit.. I got my standards..
There is a group of fellows that come down a couple of times a year from north Texas, and they fish off of water wagons. And they are here now..
They always fish the south end of the lake, and they fish hard. And Saturday they caught em good in the coves near the state park. Brush hogs in the trees have been best for them, and I promised not to tell anybody that Green Pumpkin Purple was working really well..
If you go down south you might see some human popsickles on some strange crafts.. These guys are a lot more hard core than me.. And probably a lot of you..
Them waders are just not gonna cut it for me..
It's hard to imagine but we are really not that far away from the tournament circuits kicking off their new year of competition.
Bass Champs comes to Falcon on January 21st, and I am sure to a lake near you not much after that. Bass Federation will be here the day after..
And the Texas Bass Nation will have their state tourney here February 17th and 18th..
It'll be here before you know it.. Those will be busy weekends around here. If you don't already have a place to stay you better get on it..
Well I gotta turn my computer off so we can use the electricity to run the heater.. If you don't hear from me for a few days it will probably be safe to assume that I have frozen to death..
You can bury me in the spring.. When the ground thaws out..
November 30, 2016: Eleven months into the year.. Yikes.. I can't believe it.. It seems like the days are just evaporating..
Seems like just the other day I had a seven handicap, I could jump a five wire fence with my dick in my hand, and I was a possible contender in a bass tournament..
My how time flies..
I was just reading a few old posts I had written from this time frame from 2009 to 2014. And while I found some similarities, I found some diversities as well..
One thing that does seem common is that a crankbait is catching some fish. One thing that is not so common, is that our water temps are a bit warmer this year than most.. Water temps around here are still in the seventies.. Albeit low seventies usually..
And looking back I saw myself talking about cold weather and rain and some dropping water in some years..
I guess any of that could be happening about now but currently we have slowly rising water and dry conditions.. But we are supposed to get some rain this weekend..
It has also cooled off this AM with lows in the low fifties.. The fifties was a great decade to be born in.. But as a temperature I am gonna say it sucks..
I just consulted my wind chill chart.. And it said 50° at 70 MPH equals 38°..
Too cold for me..
There were not too many folks on the water yesterday, and so far this morning I have talked to only one boat load of folks.. And they did not report anything special.. As I have said in the past.. North wind sucks on Falcon..
There have been some good fish caught lately, but they have been few and far between. And nobody I know has found a pile of big fish.
It has been one here and one there.. Or not..
From reports I have gotten lately, there is a lot of activity down around the Salanaias with the traffickers.. Several fishermen have been harassed by them I hear. Which has consisted of boats running near you while you are fishing. And some animated hand motions that have been translated into get the hell out of here..
For whatever it is worth.. I told you I'd tell you what I know.
Mark Zona is down here filming a couple of shows, one with Jeff Kriet and one with Denny Brauer. And they haven't just murdered em but Kriet caught one whopper yesterday.
I'm not sure when the shows will air but I'll let you know.. If they let me know.. Which is supposed to happen..
It is December (almost) and these fish (some of em) are getting ready to spawn.. And the fish above looks like she is a candidate for early delivery.
I know a lot of you guys think that winter is setting in.. We are getting ready for the spawn.. I love south Texas..
I am sure we are going to have some freezing shit descend on us, and last night Heatwave was talking about some Arctic air possibly late next week.. And my melancholy will set in..
But I certainly am not in a hurry for it to get here..
The crappie are going nuts around here, and you can catch em on both ends of the lake. They are hanging out in front of the dam on the south end, on brush piles midlake, and on hardwoods in the Veleno.. They have really taken off and are now a viable, catchable, species once again..
Giant perch are still rare, but once in a while you will catch one.. I don't know where they went.. But they have been nonexistent the last few years.. When they used to be lousy just a few years ago..
White bass are scattered, but there is a herd of them living on the old Veleno bridge.. They are not on the sides of it.. But on top of it.. Easy to catch..
Catfish are a bit slow on jug lines, but small fish are plentiful on stink bait and shrimp.
If you are a fisherman or fisherwoman, there is something for you down here. And it will be warmer than most anywhere else in the country.. And I promise the lake will not ice over..
Come see us.. Before the roads ice up!
November 28, 2016: I heard someone on TV yesterday saying that there were only twenty seven shopping days left before Christmas.. But I wanted to reassure you procrastinators that there are actually closer to eighty..
I'm working on the eight hour day of course.. What with the internet being open twenty four seven, you can shop at your convenience..
I hadn't wiped the gravy off my mouth before the full on Black Friday ads on TV started to appear.. And all I wanted to do was watch football..
I'm still in recovery mode after all the election commercials.. Glad I wasn't in a swing state..
It has been a beautiful stretch temperature wise around here. No jacket required..
Great for the fishermen.. No so much for the hunters..
In the last week we have had a couple of wind shifts, nothing I would call a front. Tomorrow we are supposed to get another northerly push, but a blue norther it ain't.. And I ain't bitchin..
What we do have (that the fish just ain't crazy about) is some rising water.. Slowly rising water. Very slowly rising water.. But we are eaking up.. A few hundreth's a day..
We are sitting at 272.06, or 29.14 feet low if you are keeping up.. We were 4.84 feet lower in August.. The lowest we got to last summer..
This rise puts the Veleno Bridge a good ways under water, but it also almost covers up the old bridge abutment in the river just below Hedieona.. It is still out of the water, but less than a foot. Hopefully it will submerge soon.. But you need to know where it is at; if you are going up there.. Go to my Ramps and Hazards page for the coordinates of this monolith.. And run twenty yards west of those numbers if you choose a riparian pursuit..
I got back on Thanksgiving afternoon, and luckily the Cowboys game kept me awake on the road.. And it was a fairly busy weekend on the lake, with some folks taking the four day holiday to slip in a bit of fishing..
And I have already started to see the second wave of Winter Texans hit town, as is usual the week after Thanksgiving. We'll see the final wave right after Christmas, as the ground starts to turn white up north.
Fishing has been a mixed bag around here, with what seems like a real good day of catching and then a real good day of fishing..
Weather has certainly had it influences, with wind being the biggest factor. Yesterday we had a stiff south wind and I don't need to tell you what that does to the open water..
So yesterday I lit out for the Salado after I closed up about nine thirty.. It had been over a week since I had been on the lake..
I fished a gravel point near the water pump near marker twelve first stop, and caught three fish, one of em a fat two and a half, the other were rats. The waves were getting big so I headed for the confines of Mother Salado, where I could hide out and be somewhat protected..
I missed a couple of fish that picked up a Plum Ol Monster and dropped it.. Didn't seem like they wanted the dark bait. Or at least they wouldn't eat it.. So I switched to a Baby Brush Hog in Sungill color and put some green dye on the tail..
And by the time I got through, about one thirty, I had used the whole bag of em..
I have been catching the fish good in Salado on the gravel bars on the north side of the river, but yesterday I had very little luck on gravel.
So I headed back in there to the Indian Bluffs and started to fish my way back out, along the protected side of the creek.
And I still had no luck on gravel.. If there was no chunk rock or ledgy edges at the water then I could not get bit. for whatever that is worth..
I caught one about four and another about three and a half.. But no whoppers.. But I was just glad to get out..
I did hear from several fishermen this AM that said they fished the south end of the lake yesterday.. I heard of a couple sevens being caught, and some big waves..
Another group of guys that have been here a few days have been whacking the fish on points with chrome and blue Red Eye Shad lipless baits.. Their numbers have been good, with a few quality fish mixed in.
On the south end of the lake, big cranks and jigs on the deep rocks have been catching most of the quality fish.. If you're into that kind of stuff..
Me.. I was a carpenter most of my life.. And I still like wood..
I'm gonna give the fishing a six and a half to seven right now.. It ain't bad.. But it ain't awesome either..
Cooling water and rising water have the fish a little confused.. Which certainly rubs on to the fishermen.
One other thing I will tell you is that these fish are biting light.. I missed several yesterday because I couldn't talk myself into setting the hook. So if something feels funny, go ahead and jerk. If you're fishing a soft plastic anyway..
Most of the time the worst thing that can happen is that you'll have to adjust your bait on the hook.. But if you loose your bait.. Don't worry.. We got plenty here..
I really think that you can go anywhere on the lake and catch fish. And if you work at it a bit you might catch a bunch of em.
We have a lot of shallow fish for sure, and some deeper rocks and ledges can have a school of fish on them at any time.
Timing is key of course. You need to be there when the fish are.. And it helps if the fish are also eating at the time..
Sounds like fishing to me..
So long story short.. It is not a full out fish catching spree going on around here if you ask me.. Do I think it is coming?
Hell yeah.. And I'll let you know when it happens..
Save some room on that credit card for a Falcon trip..
November 19, 2016:
It's that time of year again.. To see how much food you really can eat.. And retain consciousness..
I know it is not Thanksgiving day just yet.. But it might be when you read this.. And it is likely that this will be my last post till the day after..
The second real cold front of the year blew in here yesterday afternoon and evening, and this morning we are sitting at a balmy 58° with a light north wind. And if that ain't bad enough, we are headed for a low in the mid forties tonight..
Yep.. I got blue jeans on.. Which ain't what I signed up for..
And you know how Falcon fish love a north wind and high pressure.. Makes em darn near jump on the bank..
Trying to commit suicide..
Rising water ain't helping the issue any either, but I'll never complain about that.. At least we are getting away from the Super Moon from earlier in the week.. Hard to catch fish early around here when you can read a newspaper outside all night long..
I don't recall having so many amazing astrological events when I was a kid.. Meteor showers.. Comets.. Asteroids.. Super moons.. Eclipses.. Space junk re-entry's.. Solar Flares.. Mis-directed phaser blasts from spaceships...
Ok I might have made that last one up..
But it sure seems like the media likes to sensationalize anything that they talk or write about..
More on that later..
There are not many folks in town this weekend, with everyone at home or at the deer lease.. Either getting ready for Thanksgiving or packing for a trip here right after the dishes are off the table on Thursday..
Skip the pie.. I gotta fly.. And boy did we..
Many a time my folks looked around and all they saw was tail lights about the time Thanksgiving dinner was over.. Falcon was a Thanksgiving tradition for Tommy and I (and the kids when they were old enough) for years before me moved here permanent..
I know a lot of other folks do the same as well.. And I'll be here bright and early next Friday to help you with anything you might need.. We will be closed on Thursday of course..
If you are in the area, and want to fish a tourney here on Falcon tomorrow, the club from Laredo is putting on an open that anyone can fish.. If you are not a local guide anyway.. Hours will be from 7 till 3.. You can register at the county ramp at 6:30 am tomorrow..
You can contact Albert Ramirez at 956-236-4722 for more info.. Entry is $80 per team..
Despite of all the negative stuff I have written above, it is still possible for you to catch some fish. But the early bite this week has been slow.. Mid-days have been a lot better..
Thursday was a windy bitch, but yesterday was a lot better. And if you have been here much,you know that wind controls what kind of fishing you are going to be doing.. And where you are going to fish..
We heard of lots of small fish being caught in groups.. Big fish were a bit scarce this week.. But believe it or not, there were a few fish up spawning..
I know.. I know.. Call me crazy.. I'm used to it..
We are in a kind of funky period as the lake is rising slowly, water temps are falling from the mid seventies, and cool fronts are starting to be more regular.
So I am going to say that fishing is going to be spotty.. With some fantastic shit happening.. And some not so good shit happening..
It's been about ten days since "the election", and as a spectator I will have to say that it has been interesting to watch.
I knew we had a bunch of blithering idiots in this country, and I see that they are back out in force.. Doing what they do best.. Nothing productive.. But plenty of things destructive..
And in fact, they are helping ruin the planet with their consumption of social services and the perpetual requirement of police and security and all the accoutrements required to keep the rednecks from going out there and beating the shit out of em..
Of course we are still burdened with a president that has no balls, and lacks the decency to address the violence and the downright illegal actions of these "Occupy" asshole kids that don't now shit from Shinola.
Perhaps if they got out and voted things would have turned out differently.. But that is too hard to do.. It is easier to be on the streets every night proving to the world that you are an ignorant little bitch..
I'm being nice...
I find it interesting that all these little bastards are preaching love and not hate.. I find that down right hilarious..
No group has demonstrated more hate than these little bastards since time began..
I also find it funny that there has been a "revelation" that mainstream news outlets have be found to maybe not be too honest and straightforward with the facts..
Well it may be a revelation if you are a liberal..
The invisible blinders.. You cain't see em.. But they're there..
Socrates said, "When the debate is lost, slander becomes the tool of the looser."
The mantra of the left..
I am truly loving watching the meltdown of the dimocrats on tv, and in the government.. They're little brains are about to explode with each new selection to Trumps new cabinet..
Maybe it is time for them to relocate to those other countries they were talking about.. Where things are so good, and freedom rings..
Don't hold your breath..
Well even as terrible as things are around here, nobody in their right mind is going to leave the states.
I am positive that exactly four years ago I was writing about another four years of bullshit coming courtesy of the Obamma administration..
It's hard being a genius.. Uh.. No it wasn't..
I don't care who you are, you need to get down on your knees, and thank God almighty that you are in the United States..
Cause no matter how bad you think you got it.. You don't..
Especially you piss ant little titty babies that are running the streets. You suck..
On that note, I'd like to wish you and your family a great Thanksgiving weekend in the days just ahead..
And I'd like to thank you for following along all year, and offer you a sincere "Thank You!" for your business all year long.
We can't be here without you, and if it wasn't for you, I'd have to get a real job..
That would suck.. I tried it.. I know..
So Happy Thanksgiving one more time..
See you on the other side!
November 15, 2016: It was a busy weekend around here, with no less than four bass clubs in town.. Most of whom I did not know were coming.
In any case it was good to have some people in town, to take advantage of the good fishing, even though the weather was a little iffy. Light rain and sprinkles were the order of the day on Sunday.. Better on Saturday..
Uvalde Bass Club, Ingram Bass Club, Medina Lake Bass Club, and SAPD Bass Club were all here in town. And from what I heard there were some good stringers caught, but I don't have final results from any of the clubs just yet.
I heard there were a couple of five fish, twenty five pound stringers caught on Saturday. But the truth of the matter is that I was not here over the weekend.
I was at the ranch sitting in a deer blind..
But after talking to several folks yesterday, it appears that not a lot has changed in the last week. The fish are cooperative, and if you find the right spot, they won't even let you drink your Big Red without it getting warm.
In the last few months, it has become evident that we still have a decent population of fish in the four to seven pound range. The numbers of bigger fish are better than I anticipated, but it can be hard to get on a consistent big bite.
Several of the guides we talk to said they have gotten on a run of fish in the seven to nine pound range, and just as quickly, find themselves not able to boat a grande..
All I can tell you is that it sounds like fishing to me. And that you could catch a whopper on any cast. Or not..
Last week I personally caught the fish pretty good, on three different outings. Of course one of the trips was for some crappie, and we kicked their ass as well.
Well thinking about it, it was probably over the last ten days.
In any case, one day we caught the crap out of em fishing the dirty water up here on the north end of the lake. There are fish in the hardwoods on the river channel.. Like you have not heard that before. And I am probably fishing some spots you aren't, farther up the river than most folks go.
These fish are hard to the wood, and you need to treat your bait like sandpaper..
A lot of these fish are fat as pigs and have that weird orangey tint to them.. With bodies that look bigger than their corresponding head size.. Strange.. But seen it before..
The other day I fished, I spent a lot of time near marker twelve, and south some as far as School Bus.
The water is clearer and the fish seem to chase a bait a bit more.
In my opinion, and it is just that, the fish from midlake south don't seem to be as fat as the fish on the way north end. I ain't sayin' all of em.. But a lot of em.
That being said, a lot of the bigger fish are still coming from the south end of the lake..
Low water plays havoc with us here on Falcon, and truthfully we are still recovering from the low water conditions from two and a half years ago.
There is no doubt that we have oodles of fish right now, due mostly to a great spawn last spring and summer.. I'm talking about eighteen months ago..
But the fact is that right now we are 12.17 feet lower in water level than we were a year ago. That's a shitload of water.. And thanks to local rains, we have caught several feet as of late..
We just don't have much brush in the water for the fish to hide in.. It would be awesome if they passed us on a bit of water..
But I have no idea what will happen this spring.
Amistad currently is at 70.42 percent full, while we struggle with our water level at 31.64 percent.
The lakes in Mexico, where all our water comes from, (basically) are in great shape. Some of the lakes that feed the Conchos are over full. Many are in the 90%+- range, and the big lake, Boquilla, is at 93.6 %.
Think we could get any of that water down here.. Don't hold your breath.
I was praying for one more good hurricane to push up the Sea of Cortez and hammer the mountains south of Big Bend, and then they would most probably had to turn some water loose..
But it didn't happen.. Yet.. Maybe a low will still sit on top of em and rain like a bitch. But it is getting late in the year for that.. The big water comes from the Pacific..
I'm hoping for another wet spring like two years ago.. Time will tell.
Anyway.. It is so foggy here this morning that John Holmes couldn't see the end of it.. But it is supposed to burn off and be a beautiful day.
Matter of fact, low winds and eighties are on tap for most of the week.. God I love south Texas..
If you ain't stuck in the deer blind, then maybe you better get down here and whack some fish. It's too hot to hunt anyway..
You can still catch fish whatever way you want.. Some days some things work better than others.. But mostly I think it is like real estate.. It's all about Location, Location, Location..
I'm gonna hit it hard tomorrow and see what I can catch.
I think I'm due for a DD.. Hell I know I am due for a DD..
Let's face it.. Things are looking up.. Maybe it is the super moon..
Trump got elected, and I killed the best buck ever at the ranch last weekend.. (In thirty nine years)
They say good things happen in threes..
I better make sure I have a net in the boat..
November 10, 2016: Cloudy and cool around here.. I guess our version of winter is trying to take hold. Although I don't care for it much..
But if it don't get much worse the I guess I'll make another season.. It's just a fact that some of the herd don't make it through to spring..
I was watching the weather from the Laredo station the other day. And if you have been around here much, you surely have seen "Heatwave" doing the weather. He's been here for over thirty years, and I reckon he is about as good as you are gonna get. But we are talking about weathermen.. They've got a 50-50 shot at being right..
Anyway he said it has been over 1000 days since we have had an official freeze in Laredo. That is not a typo..
It is a blessing..
The water has cooled a bit with the shorter days and the cooler nights. Temperatures are in the seventies, somewhere around the middle, but your test results will vary depending on where and when. But the fish are getting the signal that fall is on the way.. Our version of it anyway..
Lots of bait can be seen flipping around in the shallows, and on many days, the bass aren't too far away.
On occasion you will see bass chasing bait like a school of whites, but more often than not, they will be doing their eating just under the surface. Seeing a few breaking the water is usually a good indication that there are more in the area.
A squarebill or a lipless or a spinnerbait will catch a lot of these fish. Some times a whole lot.. Most of these fish are smaller.. But every now and then...
There are some better fish out deep, but finding schools of six pounders has been hard to do..
Mostly because we do not have the numbers of them that we used to. Big fish have come in ones and two lately, but occasionally you can happen on a group of bigguns socializing.
It hasn't happened to me lately.
But I am seeing more and more solid keeper sized to four pound fish.
If you want to fish the top of the lake, I recommend that you flip trees..
All these trees to flip.. Right here to close to where I live.
Coincidence?? I don't think so..
I have had stellar luck as of late with a dark colored soft plastic.. Junebug red comes to mind.. As does Plum Apple.. Or plum..
These baits also work down south but I like a lighter colored bait south of marker eight.. I'm probably just programmed that way.. But the water is clearer and consensus says that W/M red or the like is a good choice..
Your results may vary.. But pick you favorite to start with, and maybe you can teach me something..
Of course the deep crankbait is a staple when you are in sight of the dam.. And a necessity when you are within casting distance of it. Firetiger, Citrus Shad, and the Chartreuse/Blue are great choices..
There are a lot of fish being caught.. Especially if you are down here a few days.. It does not usually take you too long to get dialed in.. Unless maybe you voted for Hillary..
Carolina rigging a Zorro Spook is not working too well right now..
In any case, if you come down here and work at it a little bit, you are gonna catch fish..
Well here we are some thirty something hours from the election, and the bad sperm and egg combinations have taken to the streets to protest..
But you have to take a few things into consideration when you try to figure these little bastards out..
And the single biggest factor is, that this is the first time they have ever tasted defeat..
Remember, they were raised in a time where everybody got a participation ribbon, where a winner was never acknowledged, and they got ice cream and pizza after every event..
Everybody is a winner..
Even if they sucked at whatever it was they were doing..
Most of these street rats were in junior high when Obamma got elected the first time, and he is all they have ever known..
Well reality is setting in..
And damn it is fun to watch..
Dealing with all this mental anguish will certainly leave a stain on their psychies..
And probably one in their panties as well.
Looking at their hygiene habits I think that would come as no surprise..
Dollar Shave Club need to take their campaign to social media.. An untapped gold mine waits there, as a lot of these guys are due for their first shave..
I hear that California now wants to secede.. Hell yeah..
So do we.. For two different reasons..
You know, this shit just might work out yet..
November 9, 2016: And I guess you are here looking for a fishing report..
Fishing is good..
The lights in the Bendele house were on later than they have been in ten years last night.. And I made a Jack and Coke at 2:30..
Didn't know I still had it in me..
My phone and e-mail are blowing up this morning.. And I guess a lot of you did not stay up till it was all over last night..
Or you wouldn't have been texting and calling me at 7:00!!!!
I'm not sure what immediate effect Trump will have on America.. But even my arthritis in not hurting this morning..
I am overjoyed to see the Clinton regime kicked to the curb.. And I think they'll get along just fine..
I was watching Fox News last night, but as things got to the point where there was a possibility that Trump might/could win, I had to switch over to the Clinton News Network and CNBC or whatever that Hillary channel is to see the reactions of the talking heads as returns started to come in..
And if you did not do some channel surfing you certainly missed out.
I thought James Carvilles head was going to explode.. And I think a few of the others were secretly promising God, or Buda, or Zeus, or whoever they pray to that they would turn straight if only Hillary could pull it out..
You could have sold some rope for whatever you you wanted to charge..
My favorite scenes all involved water..
Flowing from the eyes of a bunch of Millennials.. And about a hundred other Hillary supporters..
It was a classic..
Am I an asshole for feeling this way.. I don't really give a shit..
Do I think Trump is going to save the world and return us to the 1970's.. (Or whatever your favorite decade was.)
But at least he is an American with American values.. And I do believe that he will put us first.. And maybe remove us some from the globalist mentality..
Which I, and evidently a shit load of other Americans, want badly.
America has always been a beacon to the world.. Carrying much of it on our shoulders, and much of it with our pocketbook.
I don't look for it to stop. But we got some problems to deal with here before fix everybody else's problems.
Or before we go to Mars..
If I had a bunch of money, I'd be buying up all kinds of stock this morning.. Oh shit too late..
Guess the sky is not falling..
But if I were you, I'd be buying some energy company stocks.. Real soon..
One last note.. And it goes back to James Carvilles epic rant on Hillary TV..
He said something like.. "This is the end of everything.. Obammacare.. Dodd Frank.. They're gone!!" I was waiting for him to finish the sentence and add the thirteenth amendment..
What a Jackwagon..
Oh.. And for all you asshole celebrities that promised to leave the country.. I will contribute to your one way bus ticket to hell.. In some other shithole country..
Yall can all kiss my ass..
I gotta go change my flags..
October 31, 2016: Well it's Halloween, and there is a lot of stuff to scared of.. But not necessarily around here.. Unless you are getting scared of getting finned by a fish..
Now that's a possibility.. Hell that's likely..
Very good numbers of fish were reported in the last few days, including some whoppers and several ten pounders.. Including these fish caught by Sarah and Joe Rich.
I guess you can figure out which one is which.. They also had a few other good fish. They were fishing with John Adami..
I have not posted much fish porn lately.. Guess mostly because I am too lazy or because you have seen it all before.. I have seen a lot of nice fish pics lately..
And I promise that I will start posting more of em..
Sometimes though I think we get too obsessed with big fish. Yeah I get it.. People don't drive a thousand miles to come catch two pounders.. Well not a lot of folks do.
They come to Falcon to catch a replicated wall hanger.. And for good reason.. We still probably put out more ten pounders than any lake in the country.. Even with our recycling periods of woods and water.
Fishing the last week has been really good. Stable water levels, low winds, and awesome temperatures have activated both fish and fishermen.
Even I caught about twenty yesterday in a few hours. Including a four pounder.. Which has been big for me lately.
You are probably getting bored reading the same thing every week.. I am getting bored writing it..
I was throwing a trick worm of all things.. Cause I had one tied on from last week.. I don't think it really matters. I just think you need a darker bait in the darker water.. And anything watermelon based in the clearer water.
It's more about getting around the fish.. And that ain't too hard..
What can I tell you.. Fishing is good.. You can catch em your way.. The weather is nice.. Gas is cheap. (kinda)
If you don't come it is your own fault..
While things are kinda so-so in the busy department around here, I took off a few days last week to screw off a bit..
I took my boat, golf clubs, shotgun, and metal detector with me.. You never know what opportunities may avail themselves once you are out on the road.
And being Medina lake is in my backyard from the ranch, (kinda sorta) a buddy and I spent day and a half on it checking out the growth rates of the fish compared to the spring trip we made up there.
And let me tell you the fish have grown up some and fattened up a lot.
We fished Wednesday afternoon from one till five thirty, and Thursday from nine till two thirty.. And by my best count, we caught one hunnert and twenty six fish. Give or take a dozen..
Most of them were in the twelve to fourteen inch range.. Some smaller, and a few nice chunky keepers that are as scrappy as they are pretty.
And those clear water fish are just beautiful as they come. And it is a bit different than catching fish on Falcon, as you can see em in the water twenty yards away..
We caught a ton of fish that looked just like this..
The cover in the lake is awesome. I am sure it is better that it has been in forty years. And here is a pic of the clarity you can expect.. This floater was back in a cove in eight feet of water..
You probably were not expecting a Medina report.. But let me tell you I am pretty excited about the fishing there.. If you live in SA or anywhere around there, you need to get out there while the weather is nice and get you some..
Fish a small profile bait like the Zoom trick worm or finesse worm on a light weighted hook and have fun. Take a kid out there and they'll be talking about if forever.. It's that easy.. Call me if you want details..
Of course I had to shoot some birds and fill some feeders and take care of a few things at the ranch.. And get out the grinder and stuffer..
We are less than a week from opening day of deer season.. Of course the old Germans where we come from don't talk about deer season..
They talk about deer seasonings..
And I guarantee you there will be smoke billowing out the chimney of the Bendele smokehouse this weekend..
As a fat nanny is bound to get dirty on Saturday morning..
Well if you are still reading then I guess you are starved for entertainment, or your sprinkler system ruined your morning paper..
So I will tell you this.
If you want to catch some meaner than hell bass then you need to get your ass down here. These fish are pumped up and about as feisty as they can get. They already defy the laws of nature when you get one on the end of your string.
You can catch fish shallow or deep, depending on your mood. But the flipping bite is on in the woods.
Lots of folks have asked me if it is time for the fish to run up shallow as the water cools down.
Hell, we have been catching em with ticks on em all summer.. I don't think they can get much shallower..
And for a bank beater like me it is good times..
Still most of the numbers of good fish are coming from marker seven south.. Lots of em holding out in front of the dam..
Jigs and big crankbaits..
Don't forget to vote.. Or you got no right to bitch.. Least that's the way I see it..
It might get interesting before it is over.
October 24, 2016: Nice.. It is about as nice here as you can get it.. Of course I am talking about the weather..
You might want some sleeves early in the morning.. If you are a South Texas boy anyway.. But once the sun shows up it's about as good as it gets.
This week we are supposed to have highs in the mid and upper eighties.. And light south east winds..
Last week we did have a disturbing incident here at Falcon..
A cold front blew in.. And these Falcon fish just do not like north wind and the following high pressure it brings. And we had a couple of sub-par days when it comes to the fishing.
There were a few folks that still did good during the blow but most folks did not.. And that is about normal around here, and to me it is to be expected.. I seen this shit before..
Saturday and Sunday were much improved, and several folks did really good in their club tournaments. Some struggled.. But that's fishing..
The lake is holding steady as of late, with very little fluctuation the last two weeks. We are at 270.98 this morning, within an inch of where we have been for two weeks.
So no problems with the ramps on either end of the lake.. Other than that they are too long..
Water on top of the lake has cleared pretty nicely, but it is still a little off color compared to marker nine south.. I was in the Tigers yesterday and that water looks awesome..
There were a lot of boats out on the north end of the lake.. Mostly fishing trees.. Mostly on the Mexican side.
I talked to a few fishermen today and their results were varied..
Not a lot has changed as far as baits and tactics as of late. The flipping bite is still best on the top half.. Seems like cranks and C-rigs are really good down near the dam.
The square bill bite can be awesome, if you get on a school of fish. Lots of little bass in these groups..
There is also a group of summer hatch fish in the lake.. Some six inchers.. And they will eat whatever they think they can get in their mouth.. Like I have said.. They don't have mirrors.. They do not know how big or how small they are..
So it takes practice for them to figure out what they can eat.. And they'll keep trying..
There are no big tournaments on Falcon till January. But there are three weekends that motel rooms will be scarce for a day or two this spring. Bass Champs is coming twice, and the Bass Federation will be having a big event in February as well..
You can find the dates on my tournament page..
I have started a letter writing campaign to the powers that be in regards to the cormorant problem we have here at Falcon. I have received little feedback so far, but what I have gotten is the standard, "We can't do nothing about it" line..
It is early in the effort, but I really do expect to be stiff-armed, ignored, and considered a pest by those I have written.. If it even makes it to the addressee..
I have heard thru someone I know that knows someone that recently retired from the US Fish And Wildlife service, that there will be no action taken against the Cormorants, and that a moratorium on permits for individuals to control the pests on private waters has been declared.
Well that sounds about like the government..
We are being bullied by idiots who know everything about nature.. And they see it all, from their high-rise offices in some city..
You can kill a baby, but don't you dare kill a cormorant..
The feds don't even know we have cormorants on Falcon. What a crock..
What is aggravating is that the people who know we do, and know the damage they are doing, are content to just sit back and let this travesty occur. Without putting up a fight to protect our Texas waters, the job they were hired to do..
But OH NO the feds are too big and scary to even say anything to..
Somewhere.. Someone.. Has the power to change this bullshit.
They don't have to take my word for it.. Just get your ass down here and look.. And do your million dollar study. Just get started before there are no fish left in the fucking lake!!
We spend millions to stock fish.. We spend millions to study the fish, the habitat, the water quality.. To do angler surveys..
Mega millions to enforce game laws..
But we won't do anything to help out with the biggest problem in the state.. A known problem. A researched problem..
And we're out there writing tickets to people that are using the carcass of a legally caught and processed fish for catfish bait.. What a crock..
How much money has TPWD spent on Zebra Mussels, trying to prevent their spread across the state? What a complete waste of time and resources.
But we got more legislation passed for boat owners to follow.. Too bad TPWD and Border Patrol don't follow the law.. At least not around here..
Whatever level it is on, government has a special way of screwing things up. Please name me one department that is run efficiently and effectively. At any level..
How bout the Department of Transportation.. I saw the other day that they banned the use of the Samsung Note 7 on their Amtrak trains.. Because they are a danger..
Are you shitting me? What's a danger is getting on an Amtrak train..
You know we have laws that will not allow us to dump raw sewage into the lake.. A lake that serves as a drinking water supply for probably a couple million people..
But it is fine for untold thousands of cormorants and pelicans to shit it it every day..
Don't make a lot of sense does it..
I guess we'll just dump some more chlorine it it..
People with a lot of common sense founded this country.. What the hell happened to their genes?
Maybe all that bird shit in the water has changed their genetics and fried their brains..
Come on Texas! It's time to pull your head out of your ass and wake up to the things that are being shoved down our throats..
Before we don't have any semblance of what was Texas left..
Looks like we should have taken our chances with Mexico..
October 18, 2016: It seems that time flies by and it has been over a week since I updated the fishing report. But it seems like it was just last week that I was saying that deer season is about to start..
Getting older happens at a faster rate as you get older.. I am sure of it..
One thing that ain't getting old is catching fish.. And we are..
Fishing has remained very good, and some really nice fish have been caught as of late.. If you have been keeping up with my reports, (which hasn't been too tough here lately) then you know that we have been enjoying some of the best fishing that we have had in a few years.. Of course this has been going on for eight months. Or longer, depending on who you ask.
And if you are one of those that keep saying that you need to get down to Falcon, you need to pay heed to yourself. Cause you are not going to find the fishing or the catching any easier anywhere in the state of Texas.
No brag.. Just fact.. Like is often said in Texas.
People tend to think Texans as braggarts.. Well if you're telling the truth.. It ain't bragging..
If you ain't from Texas you might not understand.. But we ain't gonna hold it agin you.. And no, that word was not misspelled..
But back to the fishing..
The gosh darn square bill is still a fish catching son of a gun.. I don't really think that the color is of great importance, if you are around the fish. A trap style bait is just as good.. But it hangs up a lot better and most of em don't float..
Chrome and blue is a great choice..
If you like flippin, and who don't, you can catch a passle of fish from the hardwoods that snake along the river channel on the Mexican side from the Salado to the mouth of Blanco.
Some days the fish want to be so shallow that if they had balls they'd be dragging in the mud.. But usually you can find the somewhere between there and eight feet.. When the sun is out, concentrate on the shady sides of the trees. If I had a dollar for every time I have said that..
And if a tree looks really good, and it is gnarly and sideways and big limbs and maybe a bush close to it and it is making a bunch of shade.. Then flip that bastard ten times because I guarantee you there is a fish or three on that tree.. Get in there between the bark and the sap as I like to say..
And make sure your bait falls right down the tree.. Don't have it sinking back towards you and the boat.. Make it sink straight down the trunk.. Unless these fish are in a chasing mode, and granted, they often are, you are going to leave a lot of fish in there.
But sometimes it makes a hell of a difference..
If you prefer to stay on the Texas side of the lake, then I suggest you fish a bunch of rocks.. Here is where that square bill and deep diving Crankbaits can get you bit.. There is nothing wrong with dragging a soft plastic around those rocks either..
Texas rigged or a kinda short armed Carolina outfit will get you bit..
A senko, lizard, or a baby brush hog are good choices..
There are a lot of good hardwoods to flip in the back of all three creeks in the Tigers.. Follow some creek channels and concentrate on the outside creek bends.. Beat the bark off the trees on those hard bends..
The community holes near the dam are collecting a lot of the better fish these days.. That's why they are community holes. Scrape the rocks with a 6XD or DD-22 or a Deep Spro.. Sooner or later you are going to catch a big fish.. I have seen it too much here lately.. I really believe that it is your best shot at a monster..
Not that you couldn't catch one anywhere, on anything, on any cast.. This is Falcon, after all..
The crappie are going nuts.. If you now where to look.. Limits have been pretty easy on brush piles and concrete and in some places on deeper ledges.. But brush piles have been king..
If you want to go out and whack a bunch of them, give Tom Haralson a call.. He took me last week and we murdered em on some of his brush piles.. That's some fun shit and you can't get any better eating than a fresh fried crappie..
The catfish have been biting as well, and the water is just starting to cool. They will only get better as temps drop and catfish are know as "Fall Guys."
Water temps were still 84° last week when I was in Pierces.. Last time I looked..
Deer season is only a couple of weeks away.. Thanksgiving is only thirty seven days away..
Holy shit the year is about gone.. Again..
We have not really had what you would call a cool front down this way just yet.. We've had some north wind.. And I reckon we are going to get some more on Thursday.. Not a radical change by any means, but before too long we should see our water cool off a bit.
And when it does.. Well you better have some new string on them reels..
Come see us if you get the chance.. I just don't have time to catch all these fish myself...
October 10, 2016: It was a nice weekend around here.. And it appears that this entire week is going to be very pleasant.. If you can believe the forecast.. No rain in sight.. Light winds!
Uvalde Bass Club was in town last weekend, and they whacked them pretty good.. Saturday there was a north wind and it was a bit tough, but yesterday they had great stringers.. Best was about nineteen pounds for three fish.. Second sixteen and change and third right at fifteen..
There were some quality fish caught..
I heard that a lot of the fish were caught a bit deeper, in the ten to fourteen foot range.. I tried some of it yesterday.. But did not have much luck.. I caught mine shallow. Guess that is where my confidence is..
It was as still as Falcon gets yesterday, at least on the north end of the lake. It was almost warm.. When the water gets flat, I rarely catch many fish shallow.. Which makes sense..
Overall the fishing remains good.. Or better..
The Snowbirds are making their way back to Zapata, although there are fewer each year.
And I found out this morning that one of our favorites passed away this week.. If you knew Charlie Harper then I don't have to tell you anything about him.. Good guy.. And if he did not do it all, he did a lot of it..
Rip Charlie.. Our condolences to his wife and family..
On another note.. Or several..
I have not said much lately about politics or the election or kids that are pussies, or colleges that are turning your kids into pussies... If you haven't already..
Or about Pop Culture in general, as if we are so worried about how long Kim's orgasms last.. Or if some starlet has Anorexia..
Last week I heard that some starlet was saved by a miracle procedure.. What did they do.. Stuff a Big Mac down her throat?
What is it about all the commercials these days that have to have the male actor with a three day growth on his chin.. Is that supposed to counter act the pussification of the young kids we have under thirty? Most of em don't have enough hair on their chin to make a wig for a grape..
Or the Professional that is fifty or sixty something that can't get a hardon and needs Viagra but they have totally forgotten how to shave.. If you can afford Viagra, you can afford a freaking razor..
Am I the only one that notices this.. What is it with the sloppiness in America..
I gotta tell you that I have a problem.. I can't figure how to wear an un tucked shirt that looks good.. So I had to cure this problem and make a new shirt.. It wasn't easy.. But we did it..
Are you freaking kidding me? How about tucking in your shirt, you slob.. Untuck it.. GTFO...
Back to the hair.. How come these days we are obsessed with facial hair.. But the beavers have to be clean shaven??
All part of the pussification of America.. I guess these pansy college kids are scared of it if it has a little hair on it..
You can't be macho without a three whisker goatee? Have you seen some of the sports figures? Come on guys.. Your face looks like shit..
If your facial hair was an oats patch, you'd have to plow it up and replant..
Tattoos.. Here we go.. OK an anchor on your bicep was pretty cool.. If you were in the navy..
Covering your body with skulls and snakes.. Not so much.. I don't get it.. Does that mean you are a bad ass?
I don't think you need a giant crucifix on you arm either.. I got two words for you.. James Avery..
When I see a bunch of Tattoos on someone, especially a young kid with shit all across his (or her) neck, it says one thing to me..
"I am willing to work for minimum wage for the rest of my life."
Why do we let the children we make try to destroy us? Why have parents become such pussies? It probably started with my generation.. Or the one just before me..
Make love not war! I agree.. But be sure to tell the other guys..
"Don't do anymore than you have to.." Ah yes.. The motto of the government worker..
The people in this country that strive for mediocrity really piss me off. As do slackers in general..
The presidential candidates.. This is the best we can do?
I realize that this country is split into two groups.. The doers and the takers..
The haves and the have not's.. The difference is that the haves do and the have not's don't..
But that don't make em any less an American.. Or does it?
All we need to do is start a few more government agencies and then there will be no more unemployment.. If they can think up any more acronyms.
I am not saying ALL government employees are this way.. But if you work for the government, you surely know a lot of the people I am talking about..
You know what really pisses me off about people working for the government?
Mostly it's that they'll tell you that they can't do anything about a problem..
But the truth is that they just won't..
Don't rock the boat.. You can't buck the system.. That's not my job.. It's always been that way.. The guy before me always did it this way.. That's not my department..
TPWD for instance..
We can't do anything about the cormorants.. We know that in a few years they are going to decimate the bait population on your lake.. We know all about the birds.. We know how much they eat, and what they eat.
But we ain't gonna do shit about it..
You know why? Cause it ain't my job...
We have a bunch of skinny small fish.. You know why? Because the water is low, there is no place for the fish, or the baitfish to hide.. The fish are having to chase their ass (and bellies) off to eat what baitfish the cormorants have not already scarfed up..
And if there ain't ten thousand birds in this flock on top of the lake, then there ain't any..
How many pounds of fish can ten thousand cormorants eat in a day?
This lake has a cancer.. It's malignant..
But they ain't gonna treat it.. We'll just let it die a slow death..
Those black birds are cute..
I'm going to go open a bottle of Jack Daniel's.. And get my barrel threaded..
October 7, 2016: It has been hottern blazes around here with high humidity.. But it is supposed to cool off just in time for the weekend.. Thank goodness..
Fishing was good this morning I hear.
I have been trapped in here trying to finish up this Brazil Peacock story.. I might add a few things but I reckon I'm about done as it is gonna get..
If you have some time you can read it here..
I'm about typed out..
Come see us!
October 5, 2016: Things got a little busy on me the last few days and I ain't been able to get to the computer.. And on top of that I made a quick trip to the ranch to take care of a few things.. Deer season is coming quick after all..
Last week fishing here on Falcon was pretty darn good, and I am sure you saw the results posted below from the Sun Country tournament. I still do not have final results from the Bass Federation tourney, so if someone reads this that has them, please forward them to me.
But I can tell you that they caught them pretty good as well.
And while I am talking about these tournaments, I would like to take time to thank all of you who stopped by for stopping by.. We appreciate your business.. Thank you very much..
And while I am on the issue of thanks, I'd like to thank all of you who stop by all the time.. Even if you stop in just to give us some shit.. We like it.. But expect some in return.. But I figure you know that by now..
It has been a pretty great summer around here, and one certainly cannot bitch about the number of fish caught.. It has been good, and a lot of days awesome.. It is not at all unusual for two fellers in a boat to catch fifty fish by early afternoon.. Some over achievers have done a lot better..
Allot of these fish are schoolies from twelve to sixteen inches long.. But then there is always that number of em that surprise you just about the time you think they're all small.
The fish are still overwhelmingly shallow, with the vast majority of fish being caught in less than ten feet of water.. Many in less than six.
It has been a flippers paradise all summer, as the hardwoods have been loaded with fish.. Still are.
Water temps are falling, and there is a lot of eighty degree and a little under water temps out there.. And with the daylight hours on the wane, and certainly cooler temps to follow, It won't be too long till I am bitching about water temps that are too cool.. But not for a little while..
And in the mean time it should continue to be lights out around here..
There are no more "big" tournaments scheduled around here till after the first of the year, when Bass Champs comes to town on January 21st.
So you don't have to worry about bumping into any big crowds this fall.
Uvalde Bass Club will be here this weekend.. Welcome back..
There is just not a bad way to fish right now, and I do believe you could put on a blindfold, walk in the store, and whatever you touch first you can catch fish on.. I have been saying it for quite a while..
There is no better fishing in the state of Texas..
A lot of good fish were caught last week on spinnerbaits.. Chartruse and white seemed to be the predominant color combo. From big Jo Baby's to little War Eagles, they all caught fish..
A jig is also a great flipping or deep water bait.. Crankbaits are catching big numbers shallow.. And big fish deep..
Come get you some..
I have been tied to the whippin' post as of late, but I am about caught up and in the next few days I will post my version of what happened in Brazil..
No, I am not talking about the President getting impeached.. I'm talking about the Peacock Bass fishing trip..
In actuality my fingers are just returning to normal and I am getting back feeling in my wrists..
They say it took Liston a few weeks to recover after Clay whipped his ass in 64..
Although I wouldn't have screwed with either one of em..
Hell I'm doing pretty good for an old fart..
See you soon..
September 30, 2016: Final from Sun Country. Weights are for NINE fish!
September 30, 2016: I told you I'd keep you up to date on the Sun Country tournament. But things got a little busy yesterday afternoon.. And this morning.. Well I had to go fishing..
Here's the results of Sun Country after two days.. This is a six fish total!!
September 29, 2016: I have been busier than a mortician in Tombstone this week, with the two tournaments going on, and trying to dig out from the stuff that needs doing since I have been gone. I have come to believe that just because you go on vacation, that don't mean that you are going to do any less work.. Unless you're elected..
I'm spread thinner than one-ply shit paper..
I promised to keep you up on what is happening with the tournaments, and so far only one day of competition has taken place. The Sun Country boys and girls are fishing a three fish format, and after day one, twenty one pounds and change is leading.. Eighteen something is in second, and there are a whole bunch of stringers in the twelve to fifteen pound range.
A seven pound average for the lead after day one is about what I expected.. I hear their big fish was an eight something.. Of course I heard of the ones that got away.. Sounds just like when I fished tournaments back in the day..
I was always the worlds best pre-fisherman..
The Bass Federation fellows don't start fishing for real till tomorrow.. But some of them say they are on good fish.. We'll see soon enough..
Nobody is telling me a lot of stuff.. But a bunch of chatterbait's that have been hanging on the wall for months are starting to run thin. I'm just sayin'...
Everybody is catching fish.. Not all of em are big.
I've been too busy to pursue a few things I need to follow up on, like the fish kill in the Veleno.. But there are some things in the works..
I need to start a war (on paper and digitally) on the cormorants.. This shit is getting ridiculous.. I'll need your help..
I have a good start on the Peacock Bass story.. But it is getting pretty wordy.. Might turn into a novel.. Anyway, charge up your I-pad cause it is going to take a few trips to the crapper to get it all read..
Tommy will be back today, Lord willin, and I'll have a bit more time to work on it.. But he's planting oats, shredding senderos, and filling feeders.. So I ain't messin' with him..
I'll keep you posted on the tourney results.. But for now I gotta get back to work...
Perfect weather.. Wish I was fishing...
September 26, 2016: Lotsa miles have passed under my ass since I last sat in front of this keyboard.. Lotsa miles..
And if you know my luck in airports, then you know I spent some trying hours in a couple of em the last few days..
Have I ever said I hate American Airlines? More on that at a later date..
I got in very late last evening because someone spit on a runway in Dallas.. But here I am today back at it and trying to catch up on a lot of stuff I need to get one.. Got it coming my way.
First off I'd like to say that the fish are still biting here on Falcon.. Biting good..
At least they were before it rained five inches in the last eve and night.. And I mean it rained.. No way a lot of that water could have ended up in a gauge..
It rained all over the lake and heavy in Mexico as well up the Salanaias arm.. Lots of water running in locally and some water in the river.. It is a bit hard to tell right now but I am going to guess that we will catch a foot or a foot and a half in the next week.. Some of the river gauges are screwed up so I am guessing a bit.. But we could get more if we get another round of rain..
We came up nine inches in the last fifteen hours.. That's a lot of local rain!!
This week we have the Sun Country Bass Club championship tourney going on here at Falcon.. About forty boats.. They are in practice time today and tomorrow, and fish for the cash and goodies on Wednesday-Friday..
We also have the SE Texas Bass Federation Championship going on this week.. They are also open for practice and their competition days are Friday and Saturday.. They will have about twenty boats in town.
One note of interest.. The parking lot at the County Ramp is currently a disaster with the torrential rain we had yesterday.. It is washed out bad near the ramp so be careful in the parking area to the west.. BIG washouts!!
The county will fix it ASAP but it is a quagmire right now.. I will gently remind them tomorrow.. So for now you will have to walk a ways.. But it is no Diablo East..
I am not getting a lot of feedback on where and what right now.. These tournament fishermen ain't telling me a lot.. But good numbers are reported.. But then again; I just got back.. And I have not talked to a lot of folks today just yet.. Some folks are hitting town as we speak..
But from what I have heard, and talking to my brother, the fish are still on the chomp..
We will certainly have a bit of dirty water in backs of creeks, and down the Rio Grande a bit on top of the lake. Just when it was starting to look good after the last rain..
But it's not gonna stop the fish from biting..
I am not sure when I am going to get back on the water, but it will probably be late this week. I am about fished out.. For a day or two..
I will be working on a story about the Amazon Peacock trip.. And it will be pretty intensive.. Give me a day or two or three and I'll churn it out..
But suffice it to say it was good.. Better than good.. The old salts on the trip said it was one of the best trips in the last five years.. So I got lucky..
Lotsa details to come, but briefly I'll tell you that I caught the shit out of em.. Well all of us did.. But I had a good trip.
I personally caught a dozen or more fish over ten pounds, to include several twelves, three or four thirteens, a fifteen, a seventeen, and a twenty point twenty three pounder.. (20.23)
When these fish hit a top water it sounds like someone dropped a watermelon out of a helicopter.. It will scare the crap out of you..
The boat was awesome, and the folks at Speed's have their shit together.. Great food as well the guides and staff were awesome..
Here's a couple of pics of fish I caught.. After you catch a few, you quit taking pics of the ten and twelve pounders..
Here's a good pic of a seventeen I caught on day four..
And here's the twenty from day five..
I think I am going back...
I'll keep you updated on what the guys are doing here on Falcon in the two tourneys later this week..
It should be good!
September 15, 2016: Well I have about two hours before I head to the Laredo International Airport.. World's greatest.. Arrive forty five minutes before your flight.. No problem.. Especially if your just taking carry on..
One of the benefits of living in small town.. Hey.. Once you're past security you're past security.. No Trusted Traveler card needed.
Things remain status quo around here.. If it's working, don't fix it.. Fish are being caught all over the lake, and a man does not have to leave the Veleno if he doesn't want to..
Consistent better quality fish seem to be coming from the south end of the lake.. I'm not saying you won't catch a whopper up here.. But the south has been better.
You better tie on a chrome something that you can cast far and reel fast and shallow.. There are a lot of schooling fish out there.. A Red Eye Shad comes to mind..
The big alligator gar have showed up like they always do in September and October.. They are fat and full of eggs.. There have been some bigguns shot and caught lately, so if you are into bowfishing, and you want to whack a monster, now is a good time. The last few days the conditions have been perfect.. Hot and fairly still.. And the bigguns are rolling..
Whatever shirt you wear will be a sweatshirt..
It may be cooling off where you live, but down here summer is still in control. So be prepared for the heat, and Mr. humidity down here right now..
There was a little rain on the river between Amistad and and us earlier this week, and there is a bit of water in the river.. I think that we'll catch three or four inches this weekend if they don't let it out..
That is not much, but we are at a weird level where it will not hurt a few ramps around here.. Like Beacon and the state park.. Both of which are working, but will work better..
Well I'm packed up and will be out of here at 8:30..
I'll see yall in about ten days.. Lord willin..
September 13, 2016: The wind has given us a bit of a reprieve, and the last two days have been really nice to fish.. Well.. Sunday was zero wind and high humidity in the am.. So it was pretty sticky out there.
But when you are whacking em it don't bother you near as bad..
A buddy and I caught I don't know how many fish on Sunday.. But we had to catch forty or fifty on one spot.. Nothing over three pounds in that batch, but tons of mean pound and a half fish. Some skinny ones in the batch as well..
We had a double on the first casts of the day.. And it really didn't slow down when we quit..
These fish are having to chase hard for food in open water. And frankly I don't like the looks of a bunch of em.
We caught so many fish on Sunday that we went back yesterday. It was not as good as Sunday but it was still excellent fishing Although we did fish a few spots that had no biting fish on them, even though the graph was lit up like a Christmas tree.
We also fished some humps in the Tigers that I had not been to in ages, just because the conditions were so nice.. At least there was a little breeze to keep you cool.. But the humps we worked were pretty barren of fish. Biting ones anyway..
The majority of fish we caught both days were chasing bait off the main river channel. And most of the fish came on a square bill or trap style bait. I wore all the chrome off the front of a chrome/blue Red Eye Shad..
But you could have probably thrown a toaster out there and caught em..
If you want a chance at a bigger fish, you probably need to be down near the dam. Fishing those humps and ledges with a crankbait or dragging a big plastic can get you bit in a big way.
There were several tens caught down there last weekend. One guy caught two on consecutive casts.. Some days you're golden..
The same ol cranks are still producing.. The 6XD and the Norman DD-22 are working best.
Speaking of Norman, Pradco has finally got production rolling, and I am starting to get back a lot of my inventory.. Call me if you are looking for a color you can't find.. I may have gotten it in..
The catching here is as good as it has been in a long time.. And of course the flipping bite is still strong as well.. Come get you some.
I'll tell you what else is in high numbers down here.. The cormorants.. There is the biggest flock of birds I have ever seen hanging out between marker nine and ten.
Of course all the birds had two to four chicks in the nest last year, so what would one expect..
It is easy pickin's for these bastards with no brush to speak of in the lake. You should see em herding the bait.. It is unreal..
I wonder if anything will ever be done about these predators.. There has to be ten thousand in this flock..
Wonder how many fish they eat a day..
But year after year these worthless pieces of shit are ignored by PAW.. The Feds don't even know these birds exist..
I guess we're just screwed..
Speaking of PAW, they are coming down here today to do a fish kill count behind the Veleno bridge..
That's rich.. Being the kill happened two weeks ago..
The contractor has finally cut a ditch in the dam, although I have no idea how deep the water on the east side of the bridge leading to it is. It is about six feet deep on the west side where this pic was taken. Note the pipe at bottom right of ditch..
I have a few really good friends at PAW.. And I know a whole lot more of them.
And it hurts me to say this, but if PAW as a whole was one of my buddies, I would kidnap him and stage an intervention.
Because the dysfunction and disservice and lack of response to critical issues is just beyond me.
What the hell are they doing there??
I know a lot of you think, "Well the fishing is good at so and so lake.. They must be doing a good job.."
We need Toto to pull the curtain back..
PAW is a government agency, filled with all the politics one could imagine, and employees learn at an early age to not rock the boat, or you're going no where in your career.
And their biggest concern is credibility with the public, while they generate all kinds of feel good articles and news releases about all the good they are doing..
And 95% of outdoor writers in Texas are complicit with them as well..
When is the last time you saw a critical piece in any publication?
But you don't get to hang out with the big dogs if give em fleas..
BTW.. Be on the lookout for the grand announcement that the Sharelunker season is just around the corner..
I am not saying that PAW does not do some things well.. But it could do a lot of things a whole lot better.
I'm not holding my breath..
There has been some good rains in the Mexican mountains, and a bit on the watershed between us and Del Rio. We need one bad ass hurricane to go right up the Sea of Cortez, and camp out just south west of Big Bend.
The lakes are prime for flooding on the Conchos.. One more good storm could make it happen.. I've got my fingers crossed..
Well I am 48 hours away from heading to Brazil for my first Peacock Bass fishing trip. I'm starting to get a little jacked up.. Had to switch to Decaf..
Of course I am going with Ron Speed Adventures, and I am sure that the accommodations, food, and service will be top shelf. They have been doing this shit for decades and they got it figured out..
That's about as close to an advertisement as you'll see on this site.. But they've got me addicted to the western Mexico lakes for sure..
I will be doing a straight from the hip report on the trip when I get back.. I'll take lots of pics..
I wanna see some of them Amazon women I have heard about all my life.. They say they can skin a monkey with one hand and fight off piranha while their kids are swimming with just a stick..
Maybe I'll see Tarzan swinging thru the trees.. If I drink enough rum..
In any case it should be a hoot.. I'll be back about the 26th..
We'll talk then if not before!
September 9, 2016: The wind has been blowing pretty good this week, but it looks like we will get a reprieve just in time for the weekend. In case you're interested.. There haven't been many folks down this week..
Although the fishing is excellent.
If you like throwing a squarebill, or otherwise shallow running crankbait, then you need to come get you some of this stuff.. Rockpiles and points have been loaded up with fish on many days. Most days.. Hell every day if you figure the pattern out..
And it ain't too hard..
Rock and wind are your friends; although one poorly situated, or the other in excess can prove to be a problem.
But wind blowing over or on rocks is currently a sweet recipe for catching a lot of fish.
I know you have heard of folks catching fifty or even a hundred fish lately.. Well I am here to tell you that that is absolutely...
It has been common as of late for a two or three man boat to catch forty, sixty and even a hundred fish in a day.
Granted a lot of these fish are small, and a lot of them are undersized on the keeper scale.. But a bunch of em ain't..
For those of you who like probing the depths, there's something for you here as well. You are likely not going to catch as many fish.. But you could get on one of them schools of little fish out there deep and catch a boat load .
There have been several ten pounders caught in the last ten days and a bunch of good solid fish as well.
If you like fishing that deep water, a big billed crankbait that can get down there will catch you a bunch of fish. The 6XD or the DD-22 are good choices. A Carolina rig or a big fluke Texas rigged have also caught a lot of fish.
All those community holes that everyone fishes down south.. Well they're community holes for a reason.. And they got fish on em.. I hear it was really busy down there last weekend..
Now is a good time to be here, if you are not dove hunting this weekend instead.
There are not a lot of people here for a few reasons.
The SA Metro tourney is at Amistad in October, and most all clubs from SA are holding their monthly September tourneys out there to prefish for next month.
Sun Country is holding their championship here the last week of this month, and they are in off limits mode as of last Monday.
The SE region of Texas Bass Federation is holding their championship here as well the last weekend of the month, and they are now off limits too..
So that leaves the lake all to me.. And you..
Dove season started down here last weekend as well, but as per rules in the special white wing season.. You know em if it pertains to you.. Some birds around but you needed to be close to a feeding area.. SOS..
Water is everywhere, so the birds are a bit scattered..
Archery deer season is less than a month away.. Hell, fall must be on the way.. But it don't seem like it around here yet..
Overall we have had a nice summer.. We did have a two week inferno, but the streak got broken by some nice rains and it has been pretty nice as of late.
You gotta remember that a hundred degrees is no big deal around here. That is what we call normal. And it can happen from February thru September.. And October ain't out of the question either..
We have had 26.35 inches of rain here at the shop this year, and hearing that you'd think that we would have not lost much water. But the valley did not fare as well and they sucked us like a lollypop.. We are currently at 268.97, or 32.23 feet low.. And that's after catching a couple of feet last week..
So when you Snowbirds get down here, the lake is going to look a lot different than it did when you left..
One thing I'll mention is that the lakes on the Concho river in northern Mexico, and its tributaries, have caught a lot of water this summer. And some water is being released from Luis Leon as we speak into the Rio Grande, and it hits the river right at Presidio in Big Bend.. It is not a lot of water, but it is some.. I am not sure how long they will release it, but Amistad will catch some water in the next few days.
Amistad has caught several feet of water in the last six weeks, but they have not passed any of it along to us. If anything their releases are lower this year than last..
We need a couple more good hurricanes to come up the Baja in the Pacific and finish the job. The one that just went by stayed too far west.. Pray for more.. It could have been awesome..
I have said it many times that we will not fill up till Amistad does.. That's just the way it works. We can catch five or maybe even ten feet with a real flood between us and Del Rio.. But you will not see the lake fill up from a hurricane in the gulf.. It just won't happen.. Real water gains come from the Conchos in Mexico..
The stench from the fish kill has about subsided, as the birds and coons have done their work.
Some folks think that this was no big issue, and that we'll recover just fine..
That might be true.. But you are still idiots.
Why would you think that a fish kill is a good thing? You gar lovers will be glad to know that they're the only thing that survived back there for the most part..
There has been a ditch cut in the dam that separates the two sides. I do not know how deep the water is in the ditch. Maybe I'll get a chance to check it out this weekend..
Sharelunker season is only three weeks away, and I don't know about you, but I can hardly contain myself.
From writing something shitty about it..
PAW had a couple of high level meetings, trying to come up with some new innovations to make the program more palatable to a lot of fishermen that may have seen the light in the last few years..
But facts are facts, and just because you bring a couple million dollars worth of salaries together you can't come up with a cure for a terminal patient.. You can't change nature and make a bunch of big fish appear..
And until people think that their fish IS going to survive, that the biggest of the fish ARE getting bigger, and that the science backs up what PAW has been saying is true, well I don't think things are going to get better for Sharelunker..
Of course we all know that Sharelunker has not produced one thirteen pound fish.. And even if it did, big Whoppeee.. We got thirteen pound fish already..
Not many. And don't look for a bunch again this year.. Or the next five..
If I was a bookie I'd put the submitted number at four.. Could probably get some action both ways on that one..
You know, PAW could help themselves, (either that or put the SL program out of business) if they published the data from the study that was supposedly started about five years ago, that was supposed to show that SL offspring grow faster than PURE FLORIDA BASS..
I'm not talking about the study that showed that SL fish grow faster than native fish.. So don't confuse the two..
Everybody knows pure Floridas grow faster than a run of the mill largemouth here in Texas.. Even if they have a percentage of Florida in them.. And most do in Texas these days..
Of course that percentage varies greatly.. You'd be hard pressed to find many pure Northern's in any of our lakes I'd guess..
But we were promised a study between the two years ago and we still have not seen it..
We were also promised data from the early Sharelunker years.. Ain't seen that either..
My guess is that this study, if it happened, showed, or would show that the growth rates of SL fish were similar to a pure Florida..
But honestly, my belief in PAW's credibility right now has reached an all time low.. And I can't say I'd believe em if they came out and said, "The SL's grow faster!"
Cause we both know they're both nothing but a pure Florida fish..
Truth be told, here's what ought to happen..
For five years, suspend all shocking surveys, angler data/opinion collection surveys, and habitat study's, that are not specifically in response to an event.
You can do this research online and on the phone..
Take the millions you save and buy fish.. And stock.. You stock the lakes where conditions are good.. Don't waste money putting fish where you know they won't do well. I'm not talking about just bass. Build up the biomass..
Of couse you'd have to fight the politics involved.. And theyr'd be a lot of it..
Not every lake can grow giant bass.. But they are good for sailboats or something.. But we ain't talking about that, we are talking about trying to grow big bass..
You already know what the habitat and water levels are after a ten minute look at the internet..
Quit putting non native trout in city ponds to feed the cormorants..
Kill some freaking cormorants and kill every grass carp you can find..
Introduce vegetation, including hydrilla in some of our larger reservoirs.. Specifically Falcon..
That is if you want to grow fish...
Grass equals Bass.. It even rhymes..
Growing bass is a matter of water, cover, and food. You put me in charge of the water here on Falcon, and I'll grow you some Texas fishing that'd make you shit your pants..
Of course the people down in valley and at Amistad won't like it...
Come see us.. And get your line stretched.. You ain't gonna find any better fishing in Texas.. Even as screwed up as things are!
September 6, 2016: You know every now and then, it seems that you get in a mood that is probably not beneficial to anyone, especially yourself.. And when I say you get in a mood, I'm talking about me.. Of course I have to believe that I am not the only one that gets off on a tangent every once and a while..
I consider myself a fairly level headed guy, with a bit of common sense, and a sense of duty to speak out when I see something that is:
should be illegal,
fraught with waste,
designed by idiots,
run by idiots,
digested by idiots with no question as to why something is the way it is,
and accepted as fact because just somebody said it is.
I also get bent out of shape by people who strive for mediocrity, do the minimum to get by, are scared to take a stand for what they believe in, and are rarely informed enough to know why they believe in what they believe in.
It seems that a lot, and I mean a lot, of people have no freaking idea about anything.
As long as their phone keeps working..
My dad used a saying for years, that went; "He's too dumb to pour piss out of a boot with the directions on the heel.."
If he only knew how their numbers have grown..
Doing the bare minimum these days seems to have become the norm. An art form..
Being a slacker has now become accepted, and most companies categorize them as an average employee..
Probably because the managers are slackers too..
Since when does the employee get to set the standards for what is actually done at work..
Why does the employee get to set the wage?
You're gonna tell me that I need to pay you fifteen dollars an hour to flip burgers? Or sweep floors?
Why does going to work for someone mean that they have to provide you with healthcare?
And a retirement plan?
I guess it is all part of the Nanny state we have evolved into..
I think it sucks..
If you are worth a shit at what you do, you won't be making minimum wage too long.. If you show some effort and initiative it might surprise you where it would get you..
Yeah but shit.. If I do that then they will want me to do more and take on some responsibilities..
Nah.. But I want my fifteen..
And what really cracks me up is the hate that the slackers have for those that have busted it.. And made it..
Well what got me in this mood was the big fish kill that occurred behind the bridge here in Zapata. And the apathy that went into it before, and now after it happened..
Nobody gives a shit..
I had been talking to the contractor, Anderson Columbia, for months about the potential for a fish kill behind the bridge. And about how important it was to get a water passage at bottom depth of the creek, bigger than a straw, so fish could escape in the event of hot, low, or bad water conditions.
I documented the conditions many times, as a free and easy passage for the aquatic wildlife had not existed in months. And I blame this on the contractor, who purely and simply shortcuted the requirements for same. And according to TX DOT, a part of the contract requires allowances for aquatic passage.
Before the dam across the Veleno was built, I was told by the contractor that they were going to put down three large pipes on the bottom of the creek, and build the road over it..
Yeah.. So much for that..
TX DOT also dropped the ball because evidently they didn't give a shit about the fish either..
Oh they paid me a bunch of lip service, and did nothing.. Certainly nothing to help the situation..
TPWD did nothing either.. A few e-mails were sent, and we brought attention to the problem..
All these agencies are good at sending e-mails.. But they suck at getting anything done..
They had a big meeting out here last week. After there were thousands of dead fish.. I am sure there were people in positions with initials and acronyms after their names in attendance..
But no locals were invited.. Or permitted..
Yep.. That'll help..
I am sure they got right to the root of the problem..
If this had happened at Lake Fork, I bet TPWD would have been jumping thru their ass.. Assigning blame, and requiring restitution..
But being it is only Falcon... Well nobody really gives a shit..
September 2, 2016: Well I don't know about you, but for me sometimes there just ain't enough time to get it all done.. And it is not that we are that busy around here, at least not in the store.. But I got a lot of irons in the fire..
I went to the ranch for a few days to ride the tractor.. And I got out of town without posting a report before I left..
But I want to squelch the rumor of my demise.. I'm still here..
I have been fighting with everyone from the Pope on down about getting the water behind the Veleno bridge connected to the rest of the lake..
I didn't have any luck.. And now we have thousands of dead fish on the bank.. Like I warned them about.. But everybody knows better than me..
I guess what they should have told me was to just shut the hell up.. This is Zapata and rules that apply in the real world really don't matter here.. So it is no big deal that a shitload of fish died..
Not to mention the stench in the area.. And the potential health hazards..
I am sure I will be told a line of bullshit and that the contractor will not have to pay for the dead fish. But if I killed em I would have had to pay restitution out the wazoo.. Along with the charges associated with the fish kill..
On another note..
The fish are still biting good, at least the ones on the outside of the Veleno bridge..
The water is clearing on the upper lake, and fishing the hardwoods along the river channel is still good.. We caught about 20" of water out of the last rain event, and it brought a lot of silt and sand with it. But it is falling out of suspension slowly, and the water quality is improving day by day.
My last report contains all you need to know about the fishing.. Nothing has changed and you can catch fish from the Salado to the dam..
Deeper baits on deep rocks down south are producing fish.. You can catch shallow fish anywhere.. Literally..
I am home alone for the next week and today I have sold a ton of new licenses.. My feet hurt.. And I am sure it is only going to get worse.. The state should buy me some high dollar insoles for my shoes.. Being I am selling their licenses for free.. With a shitty interface they call a sales terminal..
I guess that is enough bitching for one day..
I will be talking about the fish kill more in the near future you can bet.. I am a little pissed.. Since I have been talking, pleading, begging for some common sense approach to connecting the water bodies at the Veleno bridge..
This is total bullshit.. If I'd of killed this many fish I'd be in jail..
August 23, 2016: Well all the talk around here is about water.. And how much are we going to get.
Not enough is my answer..
We had a hell of a rain event just north and east of us, and all that water ends up in the far reaches of the Veleno. And it has swollen the Veleno, behind the dirt dam that the bridge builders have built, to a level that probably would have topped it, if they hadn't cut a ditch in it yesterday.
I have been on the contractors ass, via their superintendent all the way up to state representatives, to get them to lower the pipe between the two water bodies, so fish could escape back to the lake before we had a giant fish kill back there. Which they were supposed to do before they ever built the dam across the creek in the first place.
Long story short, for now that problem has been averted.. We'll see what happens in the next few weeks.. Although a good number of fish did die last week..
Only in Zapata..
As of this morning, we have caught about one foot of water on the lake proper. Looking at the river, which I watch daily, and have for the last twenty five years, I just don't see a big rise in our near future. If we get two more feet I will be surprised.
But in any case, we'll certainly take what we can get.. Who knows how long we'll hold it.. We are a long way from having water in the thickets that are good for survival of the fry, come spawn time..
Over the weekend we had about 6.25 inches of rain right here at the shop.. Some places that I described earlier got up to ten inches, most of which fell on Friday and Saturday. Sunday night we got another 1.30, and it fell out of the sky in a hurry..
Of course this followed the big rains we got the weekend before.. The ground was, and is, wet..
Here's a pic of the inlet side of the pipe under the dirt dam at the Veleno, taken last week.. Hardly allowing for what one would call aquatic passage. Maybe a crawfish could have made it..
Here's a pic of the outlet taken yesterday..
That's about a six foot pipe.. And the water on the other side of the dam was about 18 inches from the top of the dam when this pic was taken.. Maybe less..
Like I said.. Only in Zapata.. These guys are damn lucky the water did not top that dam and wash it out..
The river is dirty all the way down past marker ten, and the muddy water is probably going to make it near marker nine, if history is any indication.. There are still some clear pockets of water in the Veleno around the boat ramp, and in the back of creeks like Diablo and School Bus. Once you get past marker nine, the water is decent looking, and downright beautiful as you go south.
The fishing has remained excellent thru this little water rise, and rockpiles and points are where it's at for numbers of fish. Of course you can catch a giant any time your bait is in the water, whether it is deep or shallow.
We have been having a bunch of fun.
A squarebill is a must have around here, and if you don't have one tied on, you are screwing up. And if you have one tied on, and don't throw it.. Well Like Ron White says.. "You can't fix stupid.."
One of my favorite quotes, that didn't come from my my Dad, my Uncles, or former employers is from Albert Einstein.
"The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits.."
Never truer than today..
The deep rocks down south, and I'm talking about the community holes that everyone talks about, are still putting out some fish. Some folks are doing better than others down there.. But I guess that is pretty common.
The rip rap on the dam itself has fish on it as well. A swimbait tickled along the rock has caught some fish lately I hear.. But I just can't bring myself to do that..
Hell I haven't bee south of the Tigers in months.. Fishing up here has been too easy.. And I like easy..
Speaking of the Tigers, they have been fishing decent as well. And I hear that there has been a lot of crappie caught down there lately as well.. I don't have anything as far as locations, but I have talked to some locals that are wearing them out..
I talk to people from all over the state every week. And from what I am hearing we are fishing better than any place I have heard from. And for the most part, it ain't too hard to figure out.. Even if you are a newbie down here..
You may have heard of the movie, 'Earth Girls are Easy..' Well so are Falcon bass..
Don't forget that your fishing license is about to expire.. Probably anyway.. New licenses are now available at your local retailers.. No price increases this year..
Dove season starts in a little over a week, and to a lot of us, it is a big deal. I love to fish but wing shooting is about as much fun as anything I have ever done with my boots on.
I did not go to Argentina this year, so I am a bit itchy to get out and whack some Texas birds. Populations are good but spotty around here it seems. Water features will not be as good as some years, around here any way, as there is still going to be a lot of standing water in Zapata county opening weekend.
My Daddy always said, "It can be dryer than a popcorn fart, but come the dove opener there'll be water in every cow track."
Happened more times than not..
I'm getting ready to go to Brazil and chase some Peacock Bass in a few weeks, and I gotta admit that I am starting to get a little geeked up. I have never been and I hope the happen matches the hype. In any case it will be a new experience for me and that in itself should be fun.
I know everybody takes big stuff down there to fish with, and I have received a million suggestions from folks as to what to take and what to throw. But like every newbie I reckon I will have figure it out as I go.
I am going with Ron Speed Adventures of course, and even if the fishing sucks, which I don't think is possible, I know the accommodations and and the food will be awesome..
And I will certainly be doing a no holds barred report on that trip when I get back..
Well get your ass down here and catch some fish.. Unless you got a brand new girlfriend you got nothing better to do..
Hell.. Bring her along and do both!
August 19, 2016: The wind is back and the rain is gone.. For now.. But one thing that has not changed is the biting fish.. They're still at it.. Although the early bite is a bit funky with the full moon..
Some of yall think I am moon crazy, but that big bright ball of rat cheese has a lot of effects on a lot of stuff that inhabits this third rock from the sun.. Not to mention mankind itself..
I had a buddy that was a JP back in Medina county, and he said he pronounced more folks dead around the full moon than any other time of the month. And on the full moon night in particular..
I believe him.. And I ain't even a werewolf or nothin'..
Some folks always argue with me about the spawn being more intense during the full moon cycle.. But I have seen it too many times to be a moon denier..
The moon moves a lot of things.. Anything that can move oceans is a bad SOB in my book..
I have a giant cast iron black kettle that has been in our family for.. Well I don't know how long.. But I remember seeing it at a very young age at my grandpas, and my Daddy said that it was around as long as he could remember..
It's a big son of a bitch and it really takes two growed men to move it.. And a half a cord of wood to bring it full of water to boil.. You could wash a Volkswagen in it.. I mean in it..
We used to cook for a lot of large events.. Weddings.. Conventions.. Meetings.. Picnics.. You name it.. I didn't cook for a quinceanera till I got down here..
But in any case, my Dad used to always say that if the moon was shrinking, you could cook thirty pounds of beans in that pot.. But if it was growing, you could only cook twenty eight..
I took me a few years to believe him.. But it is true..
An old German tradition was to always get your hair cut when the moon was shrinking.. Not growing.. Cause it won't grow as fast..
There's certain vegetables that you only plant during a shrinking or near dark of the moon.. Like Taters.. Or carrots.. If it grows underground, plant it when the moon is dark..
If it grows on top of the ground, plant it when the moon is bright.. Green beans, corn.. Yada yada yada..
Yall didn't know I was a Moonologist did you..
I even dated a Moonie back in the seventies.. She was a little weird, but she could lick her eyebrows.. But I digress..
In any case, the moon has a lot of growing and swelling effects on a lot of things..
I had a girlfriend once that said we could only do it during the dark of the moon. For obvious reasons..
I wonder if the approaching full moon is what caused the olympic swimmers to go batshit crazy over in Rio.. What in the world could have possibly possessed a group of talented, famous, wealthy, gold medallists to go gangsta on a bathroom, and make up a cock and bull story about being robbed at gunpoint..
I think they need to hock their gold medals and spend the jack on some professional health care.. This is truly an embarrassment to the US and I hope the ones in power on the Olympic committee kick their ass financially..
Just think what would have happened to me, if I'd a won the Bass Masters Classic, and then ran out and kicked over a bunch of Porta-Potties, and swore that some catfishermen stole my HDS 10, and threatened to rub Catfish Charlie in my eyes..
Why I'd be the laughing stock of the sport..
But lets remember.. This is only the Olympics.. Nobody really gives a shit..
What else.. Oh Yeah.. The presidents daughter got caught smoking dope.. I guess the apple don't fall too far from the tree.. Even if the tree is in Kenya.. I am sure she has been fingerprinted and bonded out by now..
Of course her sin was trivial compared to her fathers. He is the most un American president, and for that matter, American, that I know of.. He is an infiltrator..
I told you this scab has no idea what it is to be an American.. Or a Christian.. And if you think his colors are starting to show now, just wait till he is out of office..
I, for one, am counting the days.. When he will blend into the spoiled democratic pot of stew, with Carter and Clinton, and be no more than a rancid smell, lingering just a while after you throw it out to the hogs..
Trump and the female Clinton are duking it out on TV, radio, online, in print, and and on every electronic device known to mankind.
I am not sure when it's going to start, but it is probably going to get a little ugly.. Trump is no GQ model for sure, but I wish they'd quit taking the hi-res photos of Hillary.. Maybe a one megapixel camera would be better..
And they always put the commercials on during dinner time.. My bowl of gruel looks better.. But seeing her in 1080p makes it hard to eat..
If it seems like I am being a little negative today, well you can blame it on the moon..
The fishing is good.. Get your ass down here..
August 16, 2016: It was a kinda busy weekend on the water, and some visitors got to see something that doesn't happen in Zapata very often..
Rain.. A lot of it..
Saturday night we had about three and a half inches, in one of the most intense thunder events in my memory. I am not sure what the Richter scale would have recorded, but it was pretty impressive. It actually shook some baits off the walls.
In the last couple of days, we have received another inch and a half, so we are up to about four and three quarters of an inch for this event. The last real rain we had was back on June 29, so it had been a long time coming.
The water level here has stabilized, at least temporarily, but it is due to the rain, not from decreased releases, although the valley has also gotten a lot of rain.. You figure it out..
There is currently not much water in the river above us, so unless something weird happens, we are not gonna see a spike in water levels.
The fishing over the weekend was good, and for some excellent. Rodney Marbach was fishing with SABC, and he had over twenty pounds for three fish on Saturday. There were also a couple of seventeen pound bags.
Helotes Bass Club was also here and Charles Parchman had twenty one pounds for six fish to win it.
Results varied of course, but a shit ton of fish were caught. Like I have been telling you, you can catch a bunch of fish right now.
Crankbaits caught a lot of fish over the weekend, and deep divers accounted for a lot of the big fish. Isolated rocky ledges and points produced a good number of good fish.
You can still wear em out on a squarebill on windy points, and the points don't have to be all rock to hold fish.
Lately I have been targeting laydowns.. A lot.. And almost all of em have fish in em.. And it does not matter how shallow they are.
Flip a soft plastic in there and be ready to set the hook. Or clank that crankbait through there.. Something is going to happen.
I have said it a hundred times, and I'll say it again.. The hardwoods on the river channel from the Salado to the Coyotes are full of fish. I am fishing them from dirt to about six or seven feet. Flip your bait on the shadowy side of those trees and hold on.
Don't go over there with no pussy line and hooks either. Use some heavy shit or you're gonna need a box of Kleenex..
This is not finesse fishing, it is full contact flipping. So prepare accordingly.
Down valley, closer to the dam, there are a lot of fish on deeper rocks, and I hear that some of the better fish are occasionally grouped up on ledges and rockpiles. The Mag Fluke has started to produce fish again, and W/M Red is about as good as any in that pretty water that I like to call Falcon Green. Visibility is about two feet in a lot of places down there, and that red flake just jumps out of that bait in the sunshine.
Good shit, Maynard..
A spinnerbait is pretty much catching fish anywhere you throw it as well, and a jig is also putting some good fish in the boat. In short, you can come down here and pretty much catch fish your way.
The crappie are doing pretty good as well, and the folks that chase them seriously have been having their way with them. From one end of the lake to the other. Try a eighth ounce jig head with something in Electric Chicken.. Save me a couple of fillets..
I don't know who came up with the color, but the name itself evokes greatness.. Electric Chicken.. Some sixties holdover, acid droppin hippie must have invented it in a flashback from some really groovy trip.. Those shrooms were awesome...
I never did any acid, but if you could get to it by pullin a cork, I have tried it.. But I never thought up anything as cool as Electric Chicken..
There have been some cool names of baits, and colors of baits in the past. And being the free spirit I am, and a sucker for anything new, I tried a lot of em..
Back in the eighties my brother went to some store and came back with some "Oxblood Spinal Core" worms..
WTF.. I was laughing at him till he started kicking my ass on it.. And I had to get some.. Then he whipped out another pack of weird looking shit called "Bruised Banana."
How in the hell could I compete against a guy who raided a bullfighters mortuary and a south side San Antonio farmers market..
He pretty much kicked my ass that weekend..
Bait manufacturers have pretty much disregarded the color wheel these days, and have given monikers to bait colors that would make a bag of skittles throw up..
Zoom has a color called South Africa Special.. Not sure were that came from.. I thought it was named after Obamma, but I found out that Kenya is in North Africa..
One of Reaction Innovations many colorful color names is Dirty Sanchez.. I don't like it as good as the Infection, or Hematoma..
Disco Violet invented by Zoom is an interesting color.
I met a girl named Violet in a Disco in 1977.. She had more moves than Ex-Lax and I really had it bad for her.. She had loose lips, and liquid hips, as Ray Wylie Hubbard would say..
She was a Brick House..
But as it turned out, she was in love with Dirty Sanchez..
Bubble gum is a cool color.. So is Cotton Candy.. Give a fisherman a sweet tooth..
Tequila Sunrise is a great color, and name, and works best on border lakes..
Have you ever seen a Red Shad?
I took a girl fishing once and she got a Red Snapper..
Sprayed Grass should be brown..
A Brush Hog should be in the pasture..
Yeah what the hell.. You gotta catch a fisherman before you can catch a fish..
It's all about marketing, baby..
How the hell did I get on this...
Well I gotta go polish my Whopper Plopper..
Last time I had the maid do it and my Ol Lady got all pissed off..
See you on the water!
August 9, 2016: It's hot! And I ain't talking about the weather.. But I could be..
Fishing is as good as I have seen it in quite a while, and I ain't the only one saying or experiencing it. As a matter of fact I have been kicking their ass. And so have a lot of other people.
I fished Sunday and Monday, but not too late either day. After about one O'clock it gets pretty brutal out there.
I did not get out till about nine on Sunday, and only fished till about one. I had a buddy with me and we started out in some dirty water in the river above the Salado. A lot of those fish that were loaded in the backs of the river creeks have moved out to main river points.
Of course the only cover on them is some old hardwoods, but that makes the target areas pretty easy to pick out. But if you see some gravel on a point you are crazy if you do not throw a square bill or a spinnerbait up there..
The water is awful looking. But a dark bait will get you bit.
I have had to rethink my preference for the "Falcon Green" that I love to fish with the falling water levels, high winds, and exposed mud banks. Especially if I want to fish the top of the lake.
And I do..
We caught a few dinks and a three pounder but the wind was a factor and we agreed that we would both enjoy a little less of the balancing act we were doing fishing in the gale.. Them fish will be there when we get back.. If the wind ever stops.
So we headed into the Salado and stopped inside the mouth about a half mile and fished some gravel bars with good drop offs behind them.
And if there is a classic pattern in the summer on Falcon, getting behind a windblown gravel point and dragging a plastic or a crankbait across it is about as good as it gets.
I was throwing a 5XD in Citrus Shad (Ain't everybody) and caught about a four pounder right off the bat. And I caught a decent number of fish on it as the day went on.
We wore our welcome out on that point in a bit and all we we catching were some rats.. Which are all over the gravel points in the Salado..
So deeper into the bush we went..
We hop scotched around in there, and worked our way back in the area of the old windmills. Of course there ain't a lot of water back there.. But shallow water is what I like and there's plenty of it.
You damn sure need to be keeping an eye out for hardwoods when running in there.. Stay in the channel.. On the right side..
But before we got too far back, we stopped at some mud bank little points that had some big woods on em. And I got lucky and caught the big fish of the day that went 6-10. Meanest bastard you'll ever reel in.
We also caught a good number of fish that were mostly all keepers.
But before we left, we had to hit a spot that is pretty much old faithful.. Kinda like that phone call you can make to that "chunky" chick in the middle of the night when you're liquored up.. You know it is gonna happen..
Anyway we got on the back side of a ledge and hammered em for a bit, but nothing over three pounds. And this point transitions into a shallow rocky flat with one tree on it..
That was surrounded by a group of fish that we couldn't catch all of.. But we caught a bunch of em..
It was hot and windy and we got off the lake and went and had a few beers..
It was a good day Tater..
Yesterday was not my day to open, but it is hard to turn off that 5:30 internal alarm clock, and I was wide awake at 6:00.
So I hitched up the boat and damn near had to put lights on it before I drove off. I idled around the corner to the point just north west of the ramp, where the next boat ramp will soon be appearing.
And on my first cast I caught a 8-2 on a crankbait.. I think it was a Citrus Shad 5XD.. Pretty good way to start the day. I caught a few more on that rock ledge, but none of em were keepers.. So down the lake I went.
I stopped and looked at a ledge around marker nine, but the sidescan didn't show me anything to get excited about. And I wanted to check out the water level on the Dolly Parton rocks so I cruised up there. I caught a few rats off the shallow rocks, but nothing that would pull any drag.
But if you are familiar with the area, this is what the tits look like right now.
After making a few casts, I headed for Pierces which was my intention in the first place.. But I got distracted by some points on the Mexican side around marker eight.
I caught fish out of water that would not reach your knees. Some nice ones.. But nothing over three.. Most of them I caught on a square bill.. Chartreuse of course..
When I got to Pierces' there was someone near to the spot I wanted to fish, so I went to a secondary spot where I have been whacking em. And after I got myself to fish shallow enough, I proceeded to catch about ten fish, but no whoppers there either.
I fished a couple more points with shallow going to deep pretty quickly, and caught another handful of keepers, but no bigguns.
It was about 10:30 and I headed back towards Zapata. And on a whim, I stopped in the creek just across from marker 11, that runs back in there a ways
I started flipping the hardwoods on the mainlake point, working my way back into the creek on the right and windblown side. And the shallower I got, the more fish I caught.
I caught some fish in water that would not have gotten the tops of your socks wet. And I'm not wearing geezer knee highs either..
Any laydown that was on the bank running into the water had fish on it. And you better be ready when the bait hit the water.. I had a couple of em kick my ass because I was not ready to set the hook before the bait hit the water..
The last tree I flipped had a fish in it that screamed off from the tree, jumped and threw my bait off.. Bout a four pounder from what I could tell, but I was getting warm and decided on put it on the trailer..
Lord willing I am going back out in the AM and beat on them fish some more..
The lake is still dropping.. We are down to 267.74 or 33.46 feet low..
The ramp at the state park has a couple of feet of usage left on it.. We'll see how long that lasts.
The county ramp is fine but flat, and down to two lanes wide.
There is still a lot of water out there to fish, but I don't like where we are headed.
The old Veleno bridge now has four markers floating on it on the east side. We'll see if more appear on the west side. Avoid this bridge to the west. Not a lot of water over the rails, and before long it is gonna be in the kill zone.
There are a lot of fish to be caught.. And I can't catch them all..
Get your ass down here.. And bring sunblock..
August 5, 2016: The hot and dry goes on around here, and with it the falling lake levels. We are down to 268.30, or 32.90 feet low. We have still been loosing about a foot of water every eight days or so. I have no idea if or when it will quit, or if we will get any replacement water from Amistad..
The IWBC does a really shitty job of sharing its water plan with the public.. As a matter of fact, they don't share it at all. What the method behind the madness is, I have no idea.
But that is nothing new.. I have never seen a long term plan, or hell a short term plan for that matter, that could give any insight into what is planned for the water in the system.
The only thing I have ever heard from them is that they'll quit letting it out when it won't run out anymore. Adjustments to the flow have certainly varied on occasion..
But my thoughts are, what if we have a couple more dry years? What are they going to do when it won't run out anymore?
We are still a good ways from that, but there is no way that all the water that left Falcon and Sugar was used beneficially this year. It is not possible..
Due to the low and dropping water level, fishing here has been awesome. And continues to be.
A few months ago we had a lot of fish up in the cover, that were un-assailable. Now their refuges have been taken out of the water, and all that is left to hide in are hardwoods, and a few lay downs and brush piles built by fishermen.
Which leaves the fish vulnerable to the gar, cormorants, fishermen, and netters..
I know it is an age old story.. One you probably tire of hearing. But it is no less relevant today than it was in years past.
And with the death of the oilfield, The Lake is the only blood that flows through Zapata's economy..
I know what some of you are thinking.. James the lake is fishing off the hook.. What are you complaining about?
Because unlike some, my memory is longer than my dick. I have seen this movie before. And I don't like the ending..
Please join me in praying for some timely and well located rain. And I promise, once we get it., I'll quit bitching for a while..
Remember all those rock humps and islands and ledges that everybody was fishing down by the dam a few years ago? You better. Cause there are a lot of fish being caught down that way.
Deep divers and jigs seem to be the ticket, along with the big fluke starting to catch some fish. How long has it been since I mentioned that bait. A few years ago it was the shiznit..
A Carolina rig will also catch em on those deep rocks.
Shallow rocks are still the number one way to put numbers in the boat. A squarebill or a spinnerbait can catch a boatload of schoolies, and occasionally a eleven pounder like this one caught by Robert Myers yesterday on a Jo-Baby spinnerbait in two feet of water..
Go figure.. I told you these Falcon fish don't care about the water temps or time of year.. They like shallow water all year round.. As do I..
He's not the only one that has been catching some good fish. The local guides have had some good luck with the big fish, and a lot of visitors have smacked around the big fish pretty good as well.
And everybody that fishes a day or two has caught good to great numbers of fish.
We just had a bunch of guys come thru the store, and we sold em everything from big flukes, to square bills, to deep divers, to Rage Craws.. And that basically attests to what I have been saying.
Come fishing. Catch fish..
You won't find the fish so cooperative anywhere else in Texas.. I promise..
See you on the water!
August 1, 2016: New research just out says that fishing is one of the most relaxing and mind healing activities that one can utilize to help cope with today's troubling times. That's no news flash..
You and me have known that all along.. That's why I am one of the calmest and non excitable guys you will ever meet..
And if the world is getting you down, you might just need a trip to Falcon to calm your frayed nerves..
Cause the fish are biting and you will quickly forget what's bothering you as you whack the crap out of a bunch of em..
We had to deal with some wind this last weekend, but the wind does not bother the fish.
Of course it pisses me off..
But wind and rocks make for some good times, as long as you can duct tape yourself to your pedestal.. The only drawback is that it makes it hard for some folks to pee over the side of the boat.. I personally have no problem with it..
There was an armada of boats down in front of the dam this weekend, and a lot of fish are being caught off the rip rap itself, and off the ledges and humps that are so famous out in front of the dam.
Those boats have been there for good reason, as a lot of quality fish have been hanging out around that rock fence.. Some people call it a dam..
There is not a bad way to fish on Falcon right now. If you like flipping woods, throwing squarebill's, cranking a deep diver, dragging a Carolina Rig, drop shotting, or trolling, you can catch fish..
It's like the Locomotion.. Everybody's doing it..
There were several ten pounders caught this weekend, and a bunch of six to eight pound fish as well.. A lot of these big fish have come on deep diving crankbaits, fished off deep ledges and humps. A lot of em down towards the dam, as stated above. But that is certainly not the only place that good fish have been caught.
Fact is that low water conditions down here have allowed us to get to a lot of fish that we could not get to last year.
Lower water levels have put in play some of the humps and deeper rock piles that the fish just were not on a year ago. And moving water most always excites the fish here on Falcon. No matter which end of the lake you are on.
All that being said, I hope a couple of hurricanes show up and run this son of a bitch over the spillway..
I forget.. We don't have a spillway.. But you get my gist..
I am always concerned about dropping water levels.. Rarely about rising ones.. As that shit just don't happen too often.
It has been five years since we were full, and it might be five years till we are full again.. Or who knows when. I'd settle for somewhere in-between where we are now, and full.
I'll take an inch!
Last time we filled up it had been thirteen years since the time before..
We won't fill up till Amistad does, and currently, both lakes have room for a lot of water. A lot of water..
I am gonna post some low water pics from the past in the next week or so.. I gotta find that disc..
For the mean time, the fish are going pretty crazy around here. I been saying it for a while..
If you follow other forums and social media, I am sure you can see that I am telling you straight..
But I always do.. If fishing sucks I'll tell you so..
But that ain't the case right now.. Get your ass down here before we are piling them up with a maintainer..
July 27, 2016: Another day, another adventure.. That's the way it is around here..
Lotsa times there is not a lot to do.. This place is so efficient that it almost runs itself...
Between ordering stuff, stocking stuff, and selling stuff, there just ain't enough time to fish.
And then there is time spent sitting in front of this computer, wasting time so I can waste some of yours..
It's a vicious cycle.. But I kinda like it..
I would like to apologize to the Democrats whose feelings I hurt the other day, when I was on a rant about Hillary and I said that they were dumb asses..
My choice of words was poor, and I would like to withdraw the dumbass part and just say that they are ignorant.
Saying that someone is ignorant is not a slight on them, it just means that they are not informed. Which could possibly be no fault of their own. It's not likely, but it is possible.
With so many people being so loose on what their definition of truth is, I can see how some folks may be confused, or otherwise disinformed of actual situations about real life happenings.
It is easy to believe what makes you happy.
But to quote Jules in Pulp Fiction, "That shit ain't the truth.."
Of course when you have a president of the United States of America, say that a blowjob is not sex, I can see how some folks, maybe those that are ignorant, or disinformed, could get confused.
My wife certainly thinks that a blowjob is sex.. Barbara Bush thought a blowjob was sex.. Hell I think a blowjob is sex too.. So do the people who make Listerine.
It is just a shame that shit like that has to make it to light. And truth be told, Hillary probably had a hand on the back of Monica's head..
And the blowjob itself ain't what is pissing me off.. It's the continual lying about everything, that goes on in politics..
And if she's nothing else, she's a liar.. She has a couple of good teachers, including her last boss..
I want to offer an olive branch to you closet readers of the Flash Report. I am not mad at you, even if you are mad at me. But I do want you to inform yourselves with the truth, and when you do and your ignorance fades, you will leave the Democrat party quicker than a cat can lick his ass.
I am not a fan of the new school Republican party either.. I have not left the Republicans. They have left me..
I find it funny that the old school Republicans can't figure out why many from their party are supporting Trump. And it is also a fact that many of their party are leaning more and more Libertarian..
I love Libertarian thinking.. But I am not sure that most people who are so supportive of it could handle it if a true Libertarian got elected..
"We want drugs to be legalized!" And for the most part I could care less if they were.. But don't be dragging your sorry ass up to the hospital lookin for free care when your dumb ass OD's..
That's what personal responsibility is..
And personal liberty to run about and do as you wish, without harming other people, is the basis of Libertarianism..
But that also includes you not harming my pocket book..
Man, I love the theory..
Enough of that.. I really signed on to tell you that it was cool and cloudy and a light breeze was blowing today, and I went to the Salado this morning and caught fish till I was tired of catching fish..
Most of them were undersized, but not all. When you go in, stay to the right side of the channel.. Those hardwoods are starting to pop out and I am sure there are a lot of them that are right under the water.
Just about a half mile in, there are gravel bars and gravel points and gravel humps and gravel ridges everywhere..
With the wind on them, and just on the leeward side of the points, the little fish are stacked like cordwood. I do not know how many I caught, but a shitload would not be an over-estimation..
Good clean fun, clear of political preference..
And do throw your bait right up on the bank. Keep your eyes open for chasing fish as they are all over.. If you see em, you can probably catch em..
Great place to take the kids.
Looks like I am going to be stuck in here for a few days, so you'll have to catch em for me..
Come get em while they're biting boys!
July 26, 2016: It's been a pretty nice stretch of weather around here, if you don't mind hot..
And at least the wind has allowed movement on the lake.. I ain't saying it has been flat out there.. But it has been manageable. It will still foam up your Big Red when you are running..
I fished the last two mornings and have had really good luck.. And so have a bunch of other folks that have been on the water..
I got on a pile of fish on Sunday morning, and I am not sure I could have caught them all.. And I mean shallow.. The best one was a 6-11 that I caught on a square bill in about one foot of water.. But I may be exaggerating.. The water might not have been that deep..
My son was in town and I took him out yesterday morning, and we caught em pretty good as well in the same areas. Not as good as Sunday, but I did beat on em pretty hard the day before.
We did not catch anything over four pounds, but we caught some nice, mean, chunky fish.
I guess that is one of the few sentences where you can properly use nice and mean in the same line of adjectives.
In any case it has been good fishing down here.. And if we don't catch some water pretty soon, we'll be able to just get em out with dip nets.. With short handles..
A squarebill with chartreuse and black has been putting a lot of fish in the boat for me.. And so has a tiny bait that Strike King makes called the Rage Menace.. If you are having trouble getting bit then put one of these on and get ready to set the hook.. It catches big fish too. But it kills the little ones..
Now that I said that, there are several guys who will tell you to throw a different bait and you can do the same thing.. And I believe em..
There are a lot of fish in the hardwoods. And you can flip up a passel of fish from em, and I do on a regular basis. But the last couple of trips I have been back to fishing rocks.. Ledges in particular and point terminations..
Where points actually flatten out to the level bottom.. I don't really care what depth they are in..
Old houses are holding a lot of fish. If you find some with six or more feet of water on them it is likely that you will catch fish there..
A lot of old houses are already dry in the marker ten and nine areas.
So many people like to say that they are fishing the old foundations.. Fact is that they are actually fishing the house walls that have collapsed over the years..
I know.. I'm such a purist.. That's what my Old Lady says..
Give this old picture a look.. Anything look familiar to you?
Note the Pilelasters on the corners.. I have no idea if this is the building just south of marker nine that everybody calls Tits.. Or Dolly Parton.. Or the Bakery.. But it could be.
Those old corners were not ovens. If the water gets a bit lower, and I am sure it will, you will be able to see the corners inside these rock structures where the walls came together in the corners. Pretty neat piece of architecture..
I found this old picture in some old archives from this area on the web years ago..
The first time I saw these out of the water was back around 1995 or so.. And they still had stucco caps on top and all four were prominent.. The ones on the south end are more decayed than the ones on the north end..
I took this picture around 2002 when the lake was really low.. This is looking north..
And you can see that there has been a shitload of sediment and siltation up against the old buildings.. Which is only natural..
And look at the insides of the corners.. You can see where the walls intersected.. Pretty neat old shit..
If we don't get some water pretty soon, we going to see all this stuff again..
I don't need to..
In any case you better get down here and get you some pretty soon.. We are kicking their ass at present, but I have no idea what the future is going to bring.. But if the water keeps dropping, I don't think it is going to be good.
You can catch em your way.. All you gotta do is get here..
July 22, 2016: Well I swanny.. The daytime winds have been fishable for three days.. And all the folks that have been holed up for the last two weeks have come out of hiding.. At least a lot of em
But when that big wind picks up, most of us scurry to the boat ramp, like cockroaches when the lights come on.. And in that group I have certainly assimilated.. I live here.. I ain't gotta fish in that shit..
Yesterday evening we held our third Working Mans outing. And we had eleven teams fish. And you could not have asked for a nicer wind at launch time. But just like every evening it seems, when six o'clock rolls around, so does the wind.. And it was blowing twenty a lot with gusts..
There were still some good sacks weighed in yesterday, and three teams had a fish over eight pounds. The Pena father and son duo once again brought in the heavy sack, and it weighed 16.83. That's a five and a half pound average. Granted three fish.. But a great sack..
In second was Adami and Griffin, with 16.52, and they had the big bass with an 8.44..
Gonzales and Chapa had 14.81 for third..
So you can see that some damn nice fish are being caught in a four hour window..
My partner and I caught thirty plus fish, but they were all two to three pound fish. In case you are wondering..
It's a great way to kill an evening if you are in Z-Town.. Keep an eye on the site for future events..
Fish are being caught about any way you want to catch em.. Deep cranking caught fish for a few folks yesterday evening. We caught ours shallow on squarebills and flipping baits.. The hardwoods across from the Veleno all the way to Beacon are loaded with fish.. That's where we ended up because you could get out of the wind a bit.
Water color on top of the lake is pretty crappy.. But the fish are still there.. Water on the south end is awesome from the dam to Pierces cove.
Lots of fish are being caught lately on deep rocks near the dam.. Yeah a lot of the community holes are putting out fish.. They're community holes for a reason..
Fishing the rocks along the river channel between marker two and four can get you bit. We are seeing a lot of deep cranking fish down there, and a lot of jig fish. Something with some chartreuse on it if you are cranking.. Light brown and green on the jigs are best..
BTW.. I was throwing a chartreuse, black back squarebill yesterday evening on the rocks.. And they were hammering it..
Long story short. The fish are biting.. Get your ass down here..
Well it is official.. Donald Trump is the Republican presidential nominee.. No news there.. But it was interesting to see the goings on of the convention..
There wadn't much love for Hillary was there.. But we knew that was coming.. Wait till next week when the Dimocrats get their turn. I'm sure it'll be just as nasty..
I will have to say that I am really disappointed with the crowd control..
You know the convention itself is a bunch of bullshit, with speeches that are mostly bullshit. Followed by a lot of promises that are a bunch of bullshit.. You can't find more cliches if you are interviewing Tony Romo.
It's mostly bullshit..
But dammit I wanted to see some skulltumpin' and ass kickin' in the streets.
These law enforcement officers did a stellar job with crowd control, from what I saw.
Kudos to the city of Cleveland and all the enforcement officers that were there from across the country..
And to law enforcement everywhere.. I got your back anytime, anywhere.. You know where to find me..
I wonder if there will be any protestors at the Dimocrat convention next week. I do not know what there could possibly be to protest..
Listen.. I am not the biggest Trump fan on the planet..
But I am probably the biggest Hillary hater on the planet..
Naw.. I am sure that is not true.. There are bound to be a lot of women who hate her worse than me..
From when Bill had joined that book of the month club. I mean, nook of the month club..
In any case, if any person with half a brain, that gives a shit about right and wrong, has any common sense, and is remotely a self thinker, that has studied anything about the Clinton's, and still votes for Hillary....
Wait a minute. That can't happen..
Oh shit I guess I've just figured out what a Democrat is.. A dumbass that doesn't give a damn..
You can say what you want about Trump.. And they will next week..
But if you take all the bad that they can drag up on him, it ain't scratched the surface on Hillary's career..
Come and see us if you can.. The lake won't disappoint.. And you better get here while we still got water..
July 18, 2016: There is a rumor that the wind will die down a bit starting tomorrow.. But till I see a leaf just lying on the ground, I am not going to believe it..
I went out yesterday after being duped into thinking that the wind would not blow very hard.. I also went to see Elvis in Laredo yesterday.. Dammit.. O for two..
We caught a few fish.. With a five being about the best.. But we were hampered by the wind, everywhere we went..
We also ran into a school of white bass.. I coulda loaded the livewells..
We fished main lake rocks.. Mostly.. And while we caught em here and there, we did not whack em anywhere.. We did find a couple of places where we caught a few decent fish. But nothing to write home about.. I had the boat tarped by 11:30.. This wind is giving me a case of the redass..
I hope the rumor of its demise is accurate..
We will be holding our Thursday Workin' Mans tourney again this Thursday. That's July 21st.. Call for more info but know that you have to register here at FLT before you fish.. Five till nine..
If you happen to be in town, come join us.. Cheap entertainment...
Come see us.. The fish are biting.. And hopefully you can keep your feet dry..
July 15, 2016: The beat, and the heat goes on... And on and on..
Yesterday was 107° with a nice cooling south wind at about twenty five.. With gusts of course.. But if you didn't have those gusts, how in the world would you keep cool?
I have seen wind spells around here like this before, but it has certainly been awhile. Several years in fact.
When this big high pressure sits on us like a cluck hen, we are in for some heat.. And some wind.. And this bitch won't even get up for a drink.. Sooner or later those eggs have got to crack.. Or I'm going to..
I haven't been on the lake for two weeks and five days..
Well that's a lie.. Tom Haralson and I went out metal detecting at some old ruins one day this week.. But we never wet a line..
We did drive by this boat killer I have talked about many times. And here's a pic of how it looks a couple of days ago..
Of course this thing has been photographed more times than Marilyn Monroe.. But the only thing that they have in common is that they'll both break your heart.. And your wallet..
As you can see from the picture, the water in the river is all riled up and the visibility in it is about as long as a grasshopper dick..
We did run into the back of the Hedieona and the water looks good in there once you get about a hundred yards past the mouth.. We did not fish. Just went sight seeing.. It was loaded with nets..
Lots of the top of the lake is dirty.. With falling water levels and exposed muddy banks and winds higher than Lindsey Lohan, what can you expect.
What you can expect is areas that have a lot of rocky banks to be much clearer. Of course down lake in open water, the water color is good.. But good luck fishing that shit.. Put on your galoshes and make sure your bilge pumps are in good working order..
We have spoken to a few stalwarts that have toughed it out.. And they are all catching fish.. Some better than others.
Here's a pic of some good fishing.. Here's a double double that happened this week.
John Adami and Al Greene got ito a mess of schooling fish.. You might try chunking a shallow crank on some of those windblown rocks.
Wind and rocks.. Wind and rocks. Wind and rocks...
Yeah.. I know.
You can still catch some fish flippin' and pitchin'. If you don't mind gettin your Hogmaster scratched up a little bit.. Jigs and soft plastics will get er done.
We have not had many fishermen down the last ten days, minus the small tourneys that have come to town..
Boredom has overtaken me and I have been working on, and fixing all kinds of shit around here.. I even fixed a reel for someone and I had swore I wouldn't ever do it again.. There's only one nut you could put a socket on, on an entire reel.. And getting the handle off rarely gets you to the root of the problem..
My hands are more suited for strangling some son of a bitch than handling the tiny screws and springs inside a modern reel..
Although during my short stint at college some girls did refer to me as the clit master.. (Damn I'm sorry I wrote that and I apologize..)
Another week and another week of drama here on good old planet earth. I think that people have gone bat shit crazy..
Not just in the middle east, but that is certainly the biggest of the problems here on earth. I'd of liked to introduce Jim Jones to these Islamic bastards..
Today is supposed to be a day of protests and violence here in the USA. What a crock of shit.. Things are bad here, so lets make them worse..
Do people in inner city shitholes want no policing? Well that'd be a way to save some tax dollars..
Lets just air drop in more guns and ammo every night and let them take care of themselves.. That's sarcasm folks..
Come on people..
Folks, the only way we can cure any of these problems is with respect. And there is no doubt that it has to go both ways.
I have been arrested a few times in my life, and never once did I disrespect the officers.
I did not feel like I was being singled out for driving down the sidewalk on two wheels.. Even when everybody else was doing it..
Because I knew it was wrong, and if not wrong, I knew it was illegal..
The police have a tough job to do.. Extremely tough.. They deal with bonnafide assholes all the time..
But they deal with immensely more rational folks.
The difference being that the rational folks very rarely have a confrontation.. Or get shot..
I'm not saying that they never get arrested or go to jail..
No matter what race you are..
There is no doubt that the world has a problem with Islam.. All of the different sects of Islam can't even get along with each other.. They have been warring and killing each other for century's..
Century's.. And we want a quick fix..
Not gonna happen folks.. If you study any history, you'll find that this Islamic uprising is nothing new.. The world has had to give them a beat down every few decades or at least century's..
With today's modern communication platforms, it makes it easy for like minded and usually brainwashed and weak minded individuals to succumb to the idea that terrorism is a good way to to deal with western civilization. What they call infidels..
The challenge of preventing these attacks is enormous..
Globalization as led to much of what we are seeing today.. Mixing peoples of extremely different cultures and radically different views on religion and personal freedoms is a recipe for disaster..
And our current president seems all the merrier watching the the races and religions more and more divided against one another..
He has done what he said he'd do.. He has brought you change..
But that Hope shit has kinda faded into oblivion..
July 11, 2016: Seven come eleven. The gamblers holiday.. Time to bounce them bones off the back wall and and drag in your pile of jack.. Or put another stack out there..
Seven Eleven is not only the name of a convenience store.. It is also an acronym for the middle of summer down here in south Texas. And true to form, it is hot and windy as the giant high pressure that has camped out on top of us persists and continues to kick our ass..
And while a little breeze is a must this time of year.. This shit is ridiculous..
We closed early yesterday, which is our norm on Sunday, and about the time I did I stood there staring at the boat.. And at the flags in front of the shop..
I said screw it and went and took a nice early morning nap..
I must be getting old.. And there was less wind yesterday than there has been all week.. What a puss..
There were a lot of boats out yesterday though, as UCBC, SAPD, and the Laredo bass club were all in town.
I have not spoken to a lot of folks that fished yesterday, but on Saturday most everybody caught a shit load of fish..
Windblown rocky points, and there's not a lot of other kinds about now, held a lot of fish, and in those waters there were a lot of schooling fish. A crankbait and a spinnerbait were great choices to catch a bunch of fish.
Either of the baits needs to have some chartreuse on it.. I heard from several groups that they caught consecutive fish on consecutive casts. A bunch of em..
These fish are on the chomp..
Flipping the trees is also catching a lot of fish.. Standing timber in eight to ten feet of water was productive for a lot of folks.. Some used jigs, some used soft plastics..
It appears that a heavy jig was very good, as the fish seemed to prefer a quick moving bait.. So that one ounce or bigger jig might be a good choice..
I would think that if the wind lessened a bit, fishing would be about as good as it gets.. If you can stand the heat..
They are still pulling water.. I guess by now I am just gonna quit worrying about it. We are sitting at 271.41, or 29.61 feet low.. A far cry from where we were just a few months ago..
If you head up the river towards the Hedieona, be aware that the big concrete block in the river is out of the water about a foot.. Run just to the left (west) of it as you pass.. Do not run to the right side of it as there is more bad shit not too deep below the surface..
The ramps are still working fine on both ends of the lake. When you run the main lake from Zapata to marker seven, run the river channel on your machine. There is not a lot of stuff to hurt you out there, but if you skirt the Mexican side, there are a lot of big hardwoods that are on the river channel edge and they are hard and solid as a rock.. You don't want to hit any of em, trust me..
But there is still no problem navigating the lake at this time.. Like always, if you have any questions, don't hesitate to give us a call..
There have been a bunch of good fish caught lately, including a few tens. Sixes and sevens are real common. Hell if I know where these fish were the last year.. Besides just being hard to get to..
Our Thursday night tourney last week was won by a couple of guys that had been down here fishing all week, and they had zeroed in on some good fish. Despite crazy windy conditions, we still had ten teams fish. The team of Dowis and Hammond caught a seventeen plus pound stringer and won the big money.. That's a good sack for three fish, I don't care where you go.
We'll probably do it again in a couple of weeks.. And hopefully the wind will subside, and we'll have a few more folks come out and fish it.. We certainly had a lot of interest and phone calls last week.. But the wind kept a lot of folks away, I know for a fact..
I'll post on here for sure before that time.. But the probable date would be 21st..
In any case, if you have already taken the kids to Disney, been to Schliterbahn, gone to see grandpa and grandma, and you need a little time off for Daddy, you could do a lot worse than coming to Falcon.
And if you are the adventurous type, a trip to Sugar might be fun.. That lake is on fire as well..
As always I will say for the record that you personally need to decide if your up for it or not. If you decide to go I would recommend that you hire a local guide that knows the ropes over there.. Especially if you have never been before. It is worth every penny, especially for newbies..
I have been convinced that it is time for me to make a trip to the Amazon and go catch some Peacock Bass. I ain't getting an younger and I am skipping Argentina this year, much to my disappointment.. So I figure I'll spend a few bucks on chasing a different quarry..
I have got to admit that I have always wanted to go.. And I'll be heading down there in mid September, if the world has not burnt down by then.. That'll be just a couple weeks after the olympics..
I'm going with Ron Speed Adventures of course.. The same folks that I go to Mexico with so I know it will be a first class operation.. And I am sure I will have to write a novella about the trip when I get back.. I'm already starting to get a bit excited.. Although the trip is still a couple of months away..
I'm saving my allowance for some topwater baits as we speak..
Well get your ass down here if you can.. Bring your drift socks and a few cases of water.. Some sunblock, a floppy hat with a chin strap, and some heavy weights.. Of course you can get all the above here at FLT.. Well maybe not the drift socks..
Come see us!
July 7, 2016: Well it's hot.. And windy.. And hot.. You get the picture..
But it is July Seventh.. So whaddya expect..
I really could care less how hot it is. But this wind is a Mother****er..
Our afternoon tourney is about two hours away.. At least right now.. We'll see if the wind scares a few off.. I now it is scaring one team off..
I retired from tournament fishing years ago.. Unless conditions are really right.. And they ain't today..
Those that have manned up and faced the elements are catching fish.. I'm just not that mad at em.. But just let that damn wind stop blowing a bit and I am gonna get out there and... Well I'm gonna show it to em for sure.
Not a lot has changed as of late.. The fish are still biting pretty strong.. They like the dropping water and they are biting. And if you are new to this site just read below a bit and you'll see what is going on..
But in a nutshell, fish water ten feet deep and in, and throw a good flippin bait or a jig. Spinner baits and squarebill's shallow between the stickups.. Flip them big standing hardwoods..
You'll catch em.. Fish the windblown points if you can..
I have been talking with PAW about the pipe under the service road alongside the Veleno bridge the last couple of days. My concern is that the water is dropping, and getting hotter most every day. Water temps are mid to high eighties.. And I am afraid that we could have a fish kill on the east side of the bridge, if these two water bodies don't get reconnected. These fish need a way out.
I know the water can't be eight feet deep on the back side..
PAW is working on it as we speak..
I guess by now you have heard that it is official.. Hillary will not face any charges for the way she used her e-mail and set up her own unprotected server. And for sending highly classified info over it.. And she knew it was going on.. And she lied about it in front of everybody.. Of course that is what she does.
If you asked her if she uses cream in her coffee she'd probably lie about if just out of habit..
But any of you that thought she would have any charges filed against her are not paying attention. The fix was in from the get go. There is no doubt that there is a different set of laws for the Clinton's. Been that way for years..
Do I think it is right.. Fuck no.. But do I think it's true.. Fuck yeah..
The FBI director stated all the laws she broke.. But then he said she did not do it on purpose.. I guess she didn't know any better..
She was only the Secretary of State.. It's not like she was the president..
Officer.. I did not know it was a 60 MPH speed limit in this area.. Tell it to the judge, boy..
Mr. Warden.. I did not know the limit on crappie was twenty five.. Tell it to the judge boy..
I did not know the girl was fifteen.. Tell it to the judge, boy..
Has anyone out there ever heard, that "Ignorance is no excuse for breaking the law.."
Have you ever had a law enforcement officer or a judge tell you, "Son.. Ignorance of the law is no excuse for breaking it.."
I'll bet you the farm that Hillary has never heard that..
Laws are for the common folk.. Not royalty..
This afternoon the president commented that he was glad that the justice department will be looking into a police shooting of a man in New Orleans..
And I have no idea what happened there..
But to quote him, he said, "I have full confidence in their professionalism and their ability conduct a thoughtful, thorough, and fair inquiry.."
What he did not say was, "And then they'll call me and I'll tell em what to do about it.."
This is the crookedest, lyingest, plottingest, triangulatingist, manipulatingist, hateingest, non-transparent United States Government that I have ever seen in my years of cognition..
Heaven help us if this woman gets elected.. We might not even have seen the tip of the iceberg..
And that's a damn fine analogy of Hilary Clinton..
A freaking Iceberg..
July 5, 2016: Well Independence Day, aka the Fourth Of July, has come and gone, and nobody I know lost any fingers.. Least of all me.. We went to the Zapata International fireworks show.. It was twenty four minutes long and pretty damn good..
It even started on time.. And in all the years I have been here, this is the only thing in Zapata that starts on time.. Every year..
I call it the International Show, because it could surely be seen from Mexico..
It was a hot and windy weekend, but those who ventured out were mostly rewarded for their efforts. Lots of good fish were caught over the weekend.. Lots of em..
Flipping is still the shit, and if anything has changed, it might be that the fish are just a bit deeper.. If you put your boat in six to eight feet of water, and flip big woods on creek or the river cannel, you are going to hook up with some good fish.
And while most any bait you can flip in there will catch some fish, a jig will catch more big fish.. And it will cull out a few of the little ones as well.. If that is your intention..
There are still some fish to be caught off the rocks.. And you can square bill em, or throw a spinner bait up there, especially where there are some smaller stickups.. Chartruse and white is best..
Speaking of spinnerbaits, the Jo Baby Green Shad bait is back in production.. If you are hankerin for some..
Look for those wind blown points and rocky banks.. In all of the above look for mini points and isolated hardwoods and jut outs.. Anything different.. If there is one tree sticking out of the line of trees a bit there is a fish on it.. Or two.. Fish it slow.. They is in there..
I was saying last time I wrote that I would let you know whether or not we were going to have the Workin' Man's tourney this Thursday.. And the answer is YES.
It's gonna be hot and windy, so put that in your back pocket before you decide what you want to do.. But we'll be at the ramp to weigh your fish at 9:00 or just slightly thereafter..
We talked about having it at the State Park.. But due to high winds we will fish the upper end of the lake and weigh in at the County Dock.. We'll do the State Park on a calm day.. Maybe in 2019..
Register at FLT before fishing.. Scroll down the page for rules.. Same as last time.. First cast at Five.. Fish till Nine.. Call if you have questions..
They are still pulling water, and while it is good for the fishing, I sure hate it.. We are at 272.28, or 28.92 feet low..
Not sure what is going on.. But I never am..
I talked to some guys last week that were here from Mississippi.. They caught the fish good off the rocks on the dam.. Throwing big crankbaits at it.. I think they did mention that they lost a few baits.. So it is not for the weak of heart..
But they caught some nice fish..
So the fishing report is this.. If you can stand the heat and can fish in the wind, the fishing is good.. Awesome in some stretches..
You know when summer rolls around I have to come up with something to keep me from getting bored.. And after watching the news about Britain and Brexit, I have come up with a T-Shirt for Texans that have had enough of imperial rule.. It might not get us out of the Union, but at least you can wear your opinion on your chest..
They have been selling like hotcake's and I am a little low on XL's already.. But holler at us if you want one and we'll put it in your mailbox for $27.50.. I have gray, powder blue, and red.
I hope you took the time out over the weekend to think about our Country and the people who got us to this point in time. And the sacrifices that were made by so many so that we can live in a reasonably free society, and in a reasonably safe society..
Let me ask you a question.. Do you think our political leaders have the same mettle today that the people who founded this country had?
Let me ask you another.. If the democrats in DC had a clean slate to start all over with, and they could start a country anew, what do you think it would look like?
If the republicans had the same opportunity, what do you think it would look like?
Do you think you could live in either? Or neither?
Why are we letting our country be overrun by people who know nothing about it, and mostly hate our way of life and our freedoms? Why would we invite divisiveness, and dangerous peoples to our shores?
Why would some one running our country, if they loved it, import nothing but burdens and problems for our somewhat peaceful society? At least between the peaceful inhabitants of it..
Purely out of compassion? A compassion that supercedes the will of the people, living in, protecting, funding, and actually being the country..
Because he, Barrack Hussien Obamma, a virtual newcomer to our country, has a totally different opinion of what America should be?
A country is not a piece of land.. A country is the people in it..
And when you change the people in it, you change the country..
You need to think long and hard about what you want for America.. Do you have fond memories of the way it was? Or do you hate the way it was? Are you liking it better right now than ten years go? Twenty years ago?
What do you think it will look like in ten years?
Do you think that in ten years we are going to be a better adjusted more peaceful society than today?
Or do you think things are turning to shit?
Ponder on that for a while.. And choose your candidates carefully...
Your grandkids lives depend on it..