Chi Family Takes on Lake Hodges
There's something about family and fishing that just seems to go together. So when Peter called me and said he wanted to take his whole family bass fishing this fine afternoon, I was more than happy to oblige them a trip. After agreeing on a location, it seemed that the beautiful Lake Hodges would provide them a trip to remember.
I told Peter that the largemouth bass at Lake Hodges normally run between 1 and 3 pounds, but I have had friends recently catch them up to eight pounds. The fish are in all three stages of spawn (pre-spawn, spawn, and post-spawn), therefore catching fish should not be hard. Getting them to bite definitely wasn't hard at all. However, most of the bites were small males; short attacks, and very few hook-ups that landed fish in the boat.
Not ready to give up, or be dissuaded by the amount of fishing pressure the lake was receiving by the previous and current tournaments, we moved from some of the tree lined areas to more rocky settings. That didn't help much. All along the way, everywhere we went, 12 year old Derek kept getting fish, and loosing them to jumping, snags, and generally bass doing what bass do to get off. Poor fella, just could not seem to land fish like his dad and his sister (Serena) were doing right next to him.
Then Derek said the phrase I will always remember, "I've got one... for real this time!" Boy, did he. He tossed out the light weight Quantum Spinning combo with 6 pound McCoy Line, and a split shot rig complete with an Open Water Custom Baits Kermit colored Sting Ray. And it worked. Unlike the fish that his dad caught earlier on this rig however, this fish was in a class of its own. As soon as we all saw its head break water, I knew I had to get on it. I pulled the anchor and got on the trolling motor. Due to the location of cover, buoy lines, etc., I wanted to get this fish to clearer water so Derek would have a chance to get it to the net. With the drag zinging, this fine young fisherman did exactly that. With high fives flying, and one excited family, we all were happy for Derek. The big mama seemed a bit stressed from the fight, so we let her revive in the live-well, and weighed her on the dock scale - 6.50 pounds! What an awesome catch! After a short photo shoot, she swam away with great vigor. Wow!
Thank you for reading,