Fishing "The Spot" Ahead of the Storm: Rockport 7/24/20
The water was already up a bit this morning, from the approaching storm. It was pretty clear, with just a touch of color, which is pretty perfect. There was a breeze from the NW, but not the high wind we've had so much of lately. The water in the shallow flats was a good big cooler, which I think is because a lot of it has been pushed in from the Gulf, and hasn't been steeping over hard bottom.
I have a walk-in place that I like lately. There is one exact spot that I like to fish along this particular shore. I got there this morning as the first trace of light appeared in the east. I could barely make him out, but there was already a boat right.on.that.spot. It's a pretty identifiable boat, and I had seen him out there a few days ago. More to the point, he had obviously seen me and marked the exact spot where that annoying wader was hooking up on fish. That was a bit inconvenient for me, but it's a free country and he got there first. I stopped a respectable distance from the boat, but he's still eyeballing me like I'm about to invade "his" spot.
But here's the thing. The reason I wade that exact spot is because there is an underwater point that sticks out right there, and it lets me wade farther out so that I can heave a cast to a deep grass bed. Normally it gets me to more fish. But because the wind was behind me today, I was able to dial down the brake and sling a jig far enough to get to the grass from farther away. Meanwhile, the people on the boat were pitching their croaker about 10 yards from the boat. So they are in the shallowest spot in that area, and not casting far enough to reach the deep grass I'm fishing. If he had anchored 20-30 yards farther out, he could have fished the same way, and I'm sure he would have killed the fish. But he only knew where to be, and not why he was there. I think he got tired of watching me reel in fish. It wasn't every cast, but it was steady enough to keep interested. He cranked up and left, never knowing why he didn't catch fish in the "perfect spot".
The early fish this morning were running small. I'm sure a few of them would have stretched, but I don't usually like to keep fish that I have to measure. The later fish ran, you know, small. I swallowed my pride, measured them carefully, and kept four. My next door neighbor is a devout Catholic, and I like to get fresh fish to her on Fridays, whenever I can. I kept two for my wife and I and called it a morning around 9:00.
The latest word I have is that we are now only supposed to get 20 mph winds and 1"-3" of rain. I hope it goes easy on the people south of here, but I have to admit I'm relieved that we aren't going to get flooded out. I feel like we gave at the office already.