First Big Longnose Gar Of The 2010 Season on West Point Lake
This 2010 Gar season has been an unusual one to say the least. With cool air and water temperatures and with flooding rains it's been slow, but man is it ever heating up quickly!
My last two trips have been rather uneventful, if you don't count when me and a couple of co-workers went up river right after flooding rains the day before to discover that my boat was taking on water and both bilge pumps quit working! That was a pretty scary ride back to the boat landing. George and Tim didn’t seem to upset but it wasn’t their boat, right? That problem was swiftly solved with several hundred dollars worth of hull reconditioning and two new pumps but the other detouring factors that slowed this year’s progress remained, namely cool water temperatures. With the water rapidly warming, still a full pool of water from the floods, the big girls are starting to come right on in to the shallows now, a little late but this is the yearly occurrence that gives me a good feeling that this could be the year to set a record to remember.
After going up river and catching one small Gar, my daughter Shelley and I decided to work our way into the main lake where my greatest success was earned last year. It was very encouraging to find a few nice sized Gar I could sight fish for and I soon snagged a nice one that jumped out of the water and flipped my rope lure free. After wearing this spot out chasing pre-spawn Gar that we not very interested in feeding, I switched gears and went to my original Gar hole, the place it all started on October in 2003.
We fished this spot for quite a while and we both caught a few small ones with the sun going in and out, now you can see, now you can't, then suddenly I felt that good jolt from my rod tip and I told Shelley, "This feels like a good one this time"! It didn't take very long to know I was right as the Gar stripped a good 30-yards of line on its initial run. I really couldn't see how well it was tangled so I played it very slow until I could get a good view and I finally got it close enough to make a grab for it, then there she goes again, and again until she finally got tired of trying.
My first big Gar weighed in at 18-pounds 1 ounce and measured 53.5-inched in length. It's a pretty good start for another great season of Gar fishing on West Point Lake!