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August 5, 2020: Bored.. Bored out of my skull.. At least I have had a good gout attack to keep my mind off of other things..

Like problematic launching, lack of fishermen, struggling with getting product delivered, keeping the ramps cleaned off after downpours, and the unavailability of Weller Special Reserve..

 

We have caught about three feet of water from our recent low level, and for reference, the bridge in the Veleno is just showing the tops of the concrete posts. It may completely submerge, but at least we have four large orange markers on it. Pass to the west as always.

The lake is still a little murky down to about marker seven, but surely fishable at all points south of the Veleno. But it is surely more off colored on the top end.. Looks Falcon green down around the dam.

We are releasing about nothing right now, as the valley got lots and lots of rain in the last ten days. Let's hope it stays this way for a while.

Robert from Amigo guide service and I drove some posts in the water along the sides of the secondary ramp here at the county park.. I hear that three out of four still survive.. Some of the locals seriously lack some backing skills.. But it will give you a guide for backing your rig in..

Hopefully this will be moot point as the water slowly creeps up.

The main ramp should be back in action today.. We certainly have plenty of water to put in on it if the county will keep the silt cleaned off of it.

Water temps are hanging in the upper eighties and around ninety the last week or so. And with predicted high pressure returning and temps around the century mark nothing is going to change any time soon..

 

There have not been many fishermen around to talk to lately, but the guides are still catching fish on a regular basis, with the afternoon bite being better during this full moon stretch. Condition normal.

Brush piles in the fifteen to twenty foot range are good targets, as are rocky points and ledges in the same depth range.

Texas rigged plastics and shakey heads are good choices in the brush. A big fluke on a big shakey head is a good thing to try.

Crankbaits are still good on the rip-rap and on long sloping points. And there are still some shallow fish on any shallow points at any time you get there when they are there.

Patience is a good thing.. Typical summertime fishing..

 

Catfishing has been popular with the locals, and they have caught the shit out of them lately. Hardwoods in the three foot to ten foot range are a good place to start.. Some folks are catching them good on channel edges.

White bass have been schooling down south all over the place, but if you are looking specifically for them, Government cove is a good place to start.

The big gar have been rolling out in open water a lot as of late, and some bigguns have been taken lately. A group from Oklahoma shot two yesterday, with the biggest going 235 and another going 200 even on our scales.

They say there are a shit ton of em rolling out in open water.

Crappie are still good in the brushpiles, but not as good as I have seen them. If you are good with your electronics you can still whack em pretty good.

 

I am sick and tired of this Whoohan shit, and I am sure you are too.. And I don't know what to believe from anybody.

But if you don't think this shit is over politicized you are crazy. Something has to give before all of us working stiffs are as broke as the government.

Wonder if I can move my decimal point on my account like they evidently do.. Digital money is sure easy to make..

 

I have been occupying my time in the wood shop.. Making sawdust.. But at least it has kept me from going off the deep end. Maybe I'll open up a cabinet shop.. But for now I have been making trinkets..

I know I have been lax in writing as of late, and I will try to do better.. Thanks to those of you who have e-mailed and called to make sure we are still alive..

But like Papillon (Steve McQueen) said, "I'm still here, you Bastards!"

Not to insinuate that any of you are bastards..

But we do love all you Mo-Fo's..

See you when we do!

July 27, 2020: As you may imagine, our phones and e-mail have been garnering a little extra attention the last two days, with folks wondering about our chances to catch some real water.. And of course we were hoping for a big influx as well.

And while some very generous rains fell here in Zapata, the bulk of the rain fell south of the dam, and flooding conditions were common in Starr county and south of there.

So far we have received about 5.25 inches here at the shop since this storm activity started. We still have a chance for some more rain the next couple of days, but I would guess that it will be heat generated thunderstorms that may pop up due to all the moisture that's around.

We'll see.

As I speak, a lot of the creeks are running into the lake and the river, but not north of the county line, or at least not much to speak of..

The Veleno is running good and I would think it will run for several days.. As will many others. It is at least a couple of feet deep under the bridge, and on Saturday there was no water under there..

The lake should catch a couple of feet from the low of 260.2 that was on Friday. This morning we are sitting at 260.83, so we have come up about seven inches+- in the last twenty four hours.

It was interesting to watch the lake level gauge as the north wind from the storm pushed water to the south end of the lake, and then to see it push it back north when the eye passed to the west.. But we see it all the time on big wind days.. And it is amazing how much water the wind can push.

We have been working with the county on expanding the boat ramp while the lake level is down.. And the project got underway last week.. But it looks like we have suffered a little setback with the major erosion over the weekend.

We won't be launching on the main ramp in the next couple of days.. But the ramp on the point just west of the main ramp will be fine.. But a little too wet to get to today.. We will be doing repair work to ramps as is possible..

And I am sure getting to the water at the state park would be a challenge today as well..

 

This storm could have added more water, but it also could have left less.. And I have often said that hurricanes from the gulf can bring us some water, but the real water comes down the river.

And we won't be full till Amistad is.. So like always I am hoping for back to back storms in northern Mexico that come from the pacific side. That's where the real water comes from..

 

I don't really have a fishing report, other than that the SOS was going on up until the storm and winds started.

And it might be a day or two before launching a boat becomes practical given the dirt roads in route to the water..

It is Wet! and that is good.. We'll be watching the rise as I am sure you will be too..

 

Be nice to everybody.. Even the idiots.. It really pisses them off..

I'll post as soon as there are ramps open..

July 21, 2020: Falcon: Lake 40 feet low. Water stained on top half of lake. Clearer on South end. Bass are good on spinners and plastic worms. Catfish good on cut bait. Stripers and gaspergoo slow drifting the flats.. Crappie fair on minnows.. Trout good under the birds..

Aw shit I thought I was writing for PAW..

 

Fishing, for bass, has really come on as of late, from all I am hearing and seeing. Recent reports have the fish back on a steady bite, with a lot of fish back on the rocky points and of course the dam rip-rap.

On Sunday morning, these two gents caught a seven and an eight before the sun got on the water..

Jeff Smith

Terry Stark

As you can see, these fish are eating well..

And a buddy of mine and his wife had twenty five fish before noon on spinnerbaits and chatterbaits in two to three feet of water.. And also some nice fish off the rip-rap on the dam..

Brush piles are still producing some good fish as well. The Mag Fluke is doing some real damage I hear.

And a couple of fellows who just left the store said they caught em on Chartreuse/Blue cranks yesterday.. Caught em good.. But not necessarily big..

 

So I am going to up the outlook to pretty damn good.. Keep in mind that most of these fish are coming from the southern half of the lake.

Go figure.. But that's Falcon in the summer..

Water temps are right at 90° a lot of afternoons.. Right where they like it..

I can't tell you how many times that I have caught fish off the very shallow laydowns right across the lake from Dolly Parton, just north of Blanco, when the water is low, hot and muddyish..

On a spinnerbait with white and chartreuse blades.. Throwing that thing at every piece of hardwood (and there is a shit ton) that is on the bank out to three feet.. Happens every summer..

More on fishing in a bit but let's talk access..

On Saturday evening we had another one of them special thunderstorms that just blow up right on top of you.. And it blew and rained for about a half hour with the rain coming sideways that cain't possibly get in the gauge.. But over an inch of it did..

And at this level you know how the boat ramp at the county gets silted over in a major way.. And I have never seen it this bad. It also blew the dock up against the bank. It was one of those storms when you stay away from the windows..

So on Sunday it was a cluster at the primary ramp.. But it has all been repaired and you can use the ramp there again.

But in case you did not know, there is a secondary ramp at this level you can use that is out on the point due west of the main ramp.. And it is being used a lot here lately.. It is working perfectly at this level. And on Sunday it was utilized by many.

If you have questions abut using it just stop in and we'll get you straight on it..

Here's what the Old Veleno bridge looks like right now..

Down at the state park, of course we are still putting in out at the end of the ditch to the west of the concrete ramp.

It is doable with 4X4 but it is not as good as it was a foot of water ago.. So know if you go that you will be launching off the bank not concrete.. That being said, I heard there were thirty boats launched there on Sunday.

It is amazing to me, that a lake as big as Falcon, with a fishery as famous as ours, cannot maintain a couple of good working concrete ramps.

Especially at the state park.. We have money for utter bullshit but we can't have a concrete ramp in the water. I guess it is just not a priority.. Maybe we need to call in the Seabees.

Find the right spot.. Push a little base out in the water if needed.. Put down some plastic. Pour a heavily reinforced slab about thirty by twelve.. And take a D-8, or two if needed and push that fucker out into the water.. It has been done before..

You just gotta want to..

And in the mean time, are there any ramps being poured that will work till the water comes up back on the main ramp? If we came up a foot or two?

You know the answer to that one as well..

We always have this conversation when the water gets down this low. And then the water comes up and everyone forgets about it..

But meanwhile we are still paying full pop to torture your equipment at the state park. As shitty as the infrastructure there is we should get to launch for free..

 

I hear that TPWD is supposedly telling all offices to cut their budgets for next year by five percent. So I hear.. In anticipation of a budget shortfall..

And I don't understand that one..

We have broken sales records for fishing licenses during this spell, and the Wallop-Breaux fund should be running over with money as there has been record sales of fishing tackle and supplies across the country..

In case no one has noticed, the lakes in Texas have been packed this spring and summer.. And I hear the same across the country..

One of the main tenants of Wallop-Breaux is to facilitate the access for people and boats to our lakes.. Somebody in power needs to help us..

Cause this is a bunch of bullshit..

 

Speaking of high volume sales of products. I do things a little differently around here compared to the big box stores and the like.. My inventory is not ordered by computer algorithm. And I am sure some other Mom and Pop stores do it my way as well..

I order what we use and we need down here to catch fish. Every Monday.. I keep up with trends of what is catching fish. Today.. And order accordingly.. My inventory is driven by history and angler imput.

The funny thing is, inventories are at all time lows on many products. But the wholesalers will tell you that they are so busy they can hardly get the orders out. In fact I have an order in with a Major distributor that has been in for six weeks plus.. They tell me all of the product for my order is in stock, and allocated to me, but they just have not gotten to filling my order yet..

And that they are working weekends and overtime to get it done..

It must be good to be that busy..

 

But it is hard for me to figure how inventories can be so low, and they can't ship what they have for six weeks..

These are indeed strange times we are living in..

I saw a lot of this coming back in February, and ordered accordingly.. And we are still stocked with many of the items we regularly use. But certain items are made of unobtanium.. Despite my best efforts.

But we still have plenty of fish catching baits for you here..

 

If I was fishing tomorrow I would start early with a squarebill and a chatterbait or spinnerbait on shallow covered rockpiles and on points. And after the day progressed I would move to some deeper rock and brushpiles in the fifteen to twenty foot range.

There is a resurgence of bait early on the shallow rock. And along deeper rock.. AKA the dam..

If you want to catch some crappie, brushpiles in about 17 to 20 feet have been best.. Some of the guides have been really whacking them.. Call me if you have questions..

On another note..

 

Can you believe what is happening in America's large cities these days? It is beyond belief. Anarchists and felons at best, being allowed to loot, destroy, assault, and basically attack the police in masse.

And if you listen to the leadership in these towns, you'd think these were just kids having fun.

It is despicable.. This has nothing to do with anything except anarchists in pursuit of Marxism..

And from where all this rage comes I do not know. But I am sure one can find out by following the money.

Many are paid protesters and antagonists I am sure..

But to what end.. Have they not looked outside our borders to see other countries with the society's they extol?

I don't get it.. But like Warden Norton said I think it is time to thump some skulls.. And if you think that is un American, then you and I will just have to disagree..

Personally I think that peaceful protest is a great thing.

Personally I think this shit in Portland is no longer a peaceful protest.

Personally I think the stoning of Police constitutes a crime.

Personally I think the Police should return the rocks to the protestors in the same way they were delivered.

Personally I think the Mayors of these cities are a bunch of fucking lunatics that have let the rest of the asylum dwellers have the keys.

But basically they are just a bunch of cowards with no reverence for history, be it good or bad.

They are afraid to face the truth.. That they and their kind have caused and permitted the discord that is now festering into this septic quagmire that oozes down the streets every night of once proud cities..

And it is possible that these shitholes are all run by Democrats..

And no President trump, you don't have to go to Haiti to find a shithole..

 

I know many of you out there feel the same way as me.. That we just cannot believe that this shit is actually going on, and in many cases being spurred on by elected officials of the cities they run.

I'm a fucking lexicographer, and I still cannot find the words to describe it..

And I believe whole heartedly that you, the silent majority, are going to rise up this November, and vote out these idiots who are abetting these cancerous street urchins, who have no respect for the law.

And seriously, if you can vote for Joe Biden.. Well please stay the fuck out of Texas..

Trump may be extremely rough around the edges. And you might not like it that he loves a fight, and is not afraid to get down on your level. Hell he loves taking the fight to you..

But in my view, he fights the same way for America, and all the people in America. Even you idiots. And if you can't see that then you have your head up your ass..

 

Keep the faith.. Take care of yourselves. Stay informed. Be aware.

Oh.. And Go Fishing.. It always makes everything better..

See you on the water..

July 14, 2020: It's hotter than a Chicago gun barrel around here, and we still have a few more days to to get thru I hear. But relief is coming by the weekend as we descend to down around the hunnert mark..

Humidity has been around 20% so it really ain't that bad.. But it is dry..

The lake continues to drop and we have gotten down to 261.71, or 39 and a half feet low.. We have almost gotten rid of all the water we caught a few weeks back..

Amistad has started a bit of a release.. But where we are going to be in a month is anybody's guess..

The Mexicans are still not turning any water of consequence loose.. Bout what I figured..

 

Fishing has changed very little.. Since the dawn of time..

The way we try to catch em has changed.. A lot..

Fish are animals that eat other animals. And things that make them think they are animals..

But I don't think that fish think.. They just react.. According to their instinct..

 

And if you can fool em into thinking (they don't really think) that your lure is alive and tasty.. Well you just might get one to engulf your offering.. Whatever it might be..

Whatever you are offering them these days, it appears that it needs to be offered in water a bit deeper, and somewhere around fifteen to twenty feet is a good place to start..

That puts a lot of pressure on guys like me.. That like to fish shallow.

Pressure is probably not the right term.. How bout it causes a lot of anguish and hand wringing.. Because basically I don't like fishing deep shit..

That's no news flash..

All of the guides I have talked to, all of them.. Are brushpile hopping.. And mixing in a few crankbait spots on deep rock here and there.

And where you might catch a whopper one day, and nothing else, the next day or a day or two later, you might catch a handfull of small fish.

Yeah patterning fish, and big fish, has been a crapshoot. And there is nobody that is going out and whacking a bunch of big fish every day..

It is happening.. But it is inconsistent to say the least.

And that is the truth.. But if you keep moving from brush pile to brush pile you are probably going to run into a big fish or two a day.

Like Vaughan here who caught this 9.83 Falcon PB yesterday..

I also heard of a giant caught yesterday.. But I got no pic.. We'll see..

 

In these brush piles a Texas rig is about the best opportunity for you to: 1.Hook a fish. 2. Get her out of the brush pile, and 3. Get her to the boat.

Crankbait... No Bueno.. Too many exposed hooks.. You'd be hooked up to more bushes than Tiger Woods..

Carolina rig? Possible but a lot of moving parts to complicate matters..

Drop shot? Same as above..

Maybe a shakey head..

But nothing will come thru the shit like a good ole Texas rig..

 

And you gotta remember that what we build our brushpiles out of down here ain't likely to be like what you build brushpiles out of north of here.

We use Huisache and Retama trees because that is what we got. And the good thing is that they are so dense that you do not have to weigh them down.. They sink faster than the hopes of a Cowboy fan in week twelve..

And these trees ain't no weak limbed, slick leaved, willow lookin' suckers..

No sir these trees are covered in thorns from top to bottom. And they've hung up more men than Judge Roy Bean..

But where there is risk there is a possible reward..

And as stated above, if you get lucky, you can catch you a fish of a lifetime..

We'll be glad to help you when you stop in with some areas that might be holding fish.

 

I hear and see that many folks are having trouble finding specific baits all across the state of Texas.. And to a great extent I can understand their plight.

I spend half my day searching the planet for product to put on the shelves. And while we can not get a lot of things, we have plenty of what you need to catch fish down here right now.

Your guess is as good as mine as to when things will get better.. There have been factories that have come back online, and some that have gone back off again.

And I reckon that will be the fashion for the next few months.

Couple this with all time high demand for fishing products and firearms and it is easy to see how a shortage can occur.

Have you tried to buy a box of 9mm shells anywhere?

 

The crappie, white bass, and catfish have all been very cooperative as of late.

Crappie also must be found on deep brush and hard ledges.. More in the brush.. But you can find em on deep structure..

The white bass have been on top all over down south.. Drive around and look for birds.. Tigers has been loaded with them.. As have the flats off the main river channel around marker three to the dam.

Catfish can be caught using just about any method, but trees around marker eight have been good, and right here in the Veleno there has been a shitload of nice eating size fish caught.

And I reckon as the river starts to run a bit this week we'll see a bunch of catfish activity on the river.

 

Well if you're still reading and are coming down to fish.. For bass.. You need to throw an Old Monster or a senko or a big fluke in those brushpiles.

Watermelon red on the senko.. Or similar.. Plum, Plum Apple, or maybe Junebug on the big worms.. Something dark as you are fishing down there deep where there is low light and you need to make a good silhouette.

Crankbait colors are still best in the Citrus or Chart/Blue patterns..

It is summertime down here for sure, so bring your protection from the sun.. Hats and gloves and sunblock and glasses are a must.

Water temps are running high eighties to ninety.. Hard on the fishermen.. Hard on the fish.. Especially in a livewell..

So if you have some in there for whatever reason, please take care of them.. This time of year it is hard to keep them alive..

 

I am not sure how things are in your county with this Whoohan virus shit. And around here I am not sure either.. I know we have done a whole lot more testing.. But to what end I do not know.

Depending on who you listen to, I think that these tests are not to dependable.. And I believe that the reported results are none too dependable either.

Overall I hear that the tests are about 68% accurate.. Which absolutely sucks.

Where did I get my info you ask.. Same as you.. On the internet..

I have heard from two different sources, that people who were scheduled to be tested, but were not actually tested, still heard back that they were positive.

How in the fuck can this be?

And we are supposed to have faith in this system?

I was listening to the radio out of San Antonio yesterday morning, and they were saying that one in a hundred people are testing positive, and one in a thousand who get it die.

And I understand.. If you get it this can be some serious shit. Especially if you are in poor health.

But what is the end game here. Is the goal zero new infections?

Any thinking person knows that will never happen.

When will it be safe to go back outside? When some politician says it is?

I think not..

Life is filled with risks, and we all face risk every day. And as individuals we all decide how much risk we are comfortable with.

I don't skydive or climb cliffs, and I have certainly never been strapped to one of them spinning wheels in the circus and let some blindfolded fucker throw knives at me.. (Google it you youths..)

But if someone says their bass boat will run ninety well fuck yeah I want to ride in it..

 

I think a lot of this will sooner or later come down to just how much freedom you're willing to give up.. Or when you decide that you just don't want to be part of the collective..

"You will be assimilated.."

Maybe you will..

But I will not..

Protect yourself as you see fit.. As will I.

And I hope we all live long and prosper...

See you on the street.. If you dare..

July 7, 2020: It is a hot spell done set on us down here. And the next week looks like it's going to be pretty similar with afternoon temps in the 100 to 105 range..

Not for the weak of heart..

But if you can stand the heat it is possible to catch a few fish, and maybe a few whoppers as well.

As you can imagine, we do not have a lot of fishermen down here visiting, with all the hoopla over the Whoohan, the heat, ramp closures, and state park limitations on entrys.

 

As you all know, last weekend hosted the Fourth of July, and it was a little different this go round.

The Zapata County powers that be, decided to close access to the county ramp and park on Saturday and Sunday. And as I am sure you know, this is an attempt to squelch the mass gatherings that have been deemed offensive and even Un-American.

The county ramp is now open again, and all the gatherings that were to be held at the county park were held at someone's house or ranch.

Glad we got that done..

 

With limited access and low numbers of folks around, we have not heard a lot about the fishing for the last few days. Other than from the locals who are mostly catfishing, and catcatching.

They have been wearing them out.

Of course there are a few bass fishermen out on the lake, and from the e-mails and texts I have been getting I would have to say that not much has changed.

Our local guides, who are not really that busy, have still reported decent catches on most days, and some days they are kicking their ass.

And if you are heading down here, hiring a guide for a day or so is really a good idea right now. They can certainly short cut your search and put you on some patterns that will catch you a lot more fish.

Much of their catching involves brushpiles and these guys have put in a ton of work scattering these things out from river to dam.

And like I said last week, if you are good with your electronics, you can reap the rewards of their work.

Isolated rocky patches and sharp depth changes have also been holding some real quality fish. Five to seven and eight pound fish are common, with a few double digit fish mixed in.

These fish are being caught with Texas rigs, jigs, deep crankbaits, and a Carolina rig.. If this report sounds redundant, it is.. Not a lot has changed..

The lake level is slowly dropping, and as of this morning we are sitting at 263.06. That's about 38 feet low.

Sounds bad.. But we have seen it a lot worse. We are entering our wet season, or possible wet season, and we are once again hoping for some significant rainfall in Mexico.

There has been a lot of rain between us and Del Rio, and many of the lakes and ponds on both sides of the river are full, or at least in good shape. Now we need a turd floater to make the water run.

As far as Zapata County tanks and ponds are concerned, they are in really good shape, especially north of town and I have received several calls inquiring where people can buy fish. Because their tanks are running over.

Haven't seen this in a while..

As far a hazards go, you can still run the lake with no problems, if you just run the river channel down to about marker seven from the Veleno.

The old Veleno bridge has re-emerged and the top of it is about four inches out of the water.. Run by the west end and you will be fine.

If you are looking for a place to fish and not have to share too much water with other boaters.. You might want to give us a try.. There are three boats at the county ramp this morning..

If you have any questions about anything Falcon, just give us a call or e-mail..

 

I am not sure what you did on the Fourth, but here we were open and put some dogs on the grill.. To say this is a strange year would be a "Duh" statement.. But it sure is a strange year.

Lots of people are not working.. And lots of people are fishing.. And buying up every piece of fishing equipment the country can import and make..

I spend half of my days lately trying to scrape up inventory.. Mostly inventory that I can sell to the locals.

I have never sold so many combo rod and reels, throw(cast) nets, and hooks and weights.

I order two or three thousand dollars worth of inventory every week, and lately I am lucky if I get a third of it.. And getting it shipped to you is a whole nother deal.

And even though there is a very low inventory at the big national distributors, which I get 90% of my stock from, it is taking them twice as long or more to get the stuff shipped out.

So I ask em, If you have nothing to ship, how can it take so long to get what you do have shipped?

I am sure the answer is that the demand is off the hook for fishing gear.. And the factories and importers have a big lag to catch up on, as most of this stuff is made you know where.. China..

And many factories were/are shut down or running at less than max capability..

It's gonna be a while till all this shit catches up.

I have had to find a few new sources for a lot of products.. But overall we are in pretty good shape.

 

Well I hope where you are living is not to eat up with the Whoohan. We have had about 50 positive cases in Zapata County, and officially one death attributed to the virus..

But the way they report things has left me unsure of anything.

I am sure of one thing, and that is that this virus, like a lot of others before, will have to run its course. We'll get past it, but the cost of that is still to be seen.

I also know that politicizing it does good for no one.

If you have issues, that are well documented that put you at risk, it is up to you to make decisions about where you go and what you do.

Keeping all these people at home, and not working and producing has brought on a whole bevy of problems that could be as bad as the virus itself.

I pray for a vaccine and or a clear cut cure to be found soon. As I am sure many of you are..

It is ridiculous to watch the sheer politics at play during this national disaster. You would think we were all on the same team..

But the more I look at America today, I think we could start a new league of some sort.. To see who can destroy the country as we know it first..

Wouldn't you like to hold up that trophy..

June 30, 2020: We had an awful nice streak of low winds around here.. But now Mother Nature is making up for it. There has not been a gale warning put out, but you know how much fun it is out there with winds in the low and middle twenties..

You young guys can stomach it a lot better than me.. I'm too old for this shit.

That being said, several folks have reported good fishing and good weights, although the two do not necessarily go together..

A few folks have caught some real quality fish, but not many of them.. And there has been the ying for that yang..

Some folks have run into numbers, usually in small areas, but not a big fish in the bunch.

Brushpiles have taken the main stage it appears, and a lot of good fish have come from them.. But you might only get one out of a pile.

You know old fuckers like me, on a new lake, can really struggle. Those of us, who have good equipment, but have never really taken the time to learn to operate, and understand what your electronics are telling you, are certainly at a disadvantage.

If you have been reading my shit very long, you know that I like to pull up to a line of trees on a creek channel or a brush line, and blindly flip all the trees on that break. And for years I have gotten away with it, because I have been fishing here so long and knew where a hundred of these locations existed.

And I still do.. But for the last year there has been very little water on the woods I have described, and quite frankly, the fish did not really seem to give a shit about being on them.

With exceptions of course. The Salanaias was on fire for a few streaks this spring, but I missed out on a lot of it. And Blanco also had a good spell or two.

And I am sure there were days when you could call your shot on what tree in (X) depth had a fish on it..

But it certainly was not the predominant pattern.

Rock was the ticket all spring long, and it makes good sense cause we had a shad spawn for two months that was hard to believe if you didn't see it. And it lasted well into the warm months.

And I had no problem with it as my second favorite fishing is chunking a shallow crankbait about an inch from the bank and winding it back out to about six feet.

Baits with bills that look like the Aflac duck's ain't tied on to my rods.. I can stomach a 5XD, but that is about the deepest bait I like to throw.. But I like throwing it about six inches from the bank and turning over every rock between the bank and my boat on twenty pound line. It'll run about eight feet deep. Maybe.. On a long cast..

I don't put much faith in a crankbait package that says, "Gets down to 25 feet.."

My ass.. Maybe on eight pound line and about a hunnert yards of it dragging behind. I have fished with hundreds of people and I will have to say that most folks cannot make a cast long enough to get a 6XD or a Norman DD-22 down over twelve feet..

And I'll wager that most guides would agree with me.

 

Anyway, I hate it when all the fish are out on deep ledges where a one ounce jig takes ten seconds to hit bottom..

Enter The Summer Of My DisContent..

Cause that is where a bunch of these fuckers are living.

So here we go, back to talking about looking at those damn electronics again..

You know my first depth finder was a Ray Jeff flasher with a suction cup stuck to the back of the boat.. You'd think that some one with that many years of experience with the bastards would know a lot more about them.

And I loved that thing.. You know why? Cause you turned the fucker on and that was it. Oh it had a sensitivity knob, (Don't you with your mate had one?) and you could screw with it if it made you feel better..

But mostly it told you how deep it was, and if you were astute you could see a school of fish in the beam or a tree if you were really good. If you were looking at it that exact second.

I don't recall what year it was but I would guess back in the eighties, when I cashed in all my chips and ponied up for the latest and greatest depth finder out there..

The Humminbird "Wide One". This fucker had at least a three inch square LCD screen and pixels the size of Mexican limes.

But it had a Menu button and a digital depth readout. It was awesome..

That Menu button is still the source of much confusion and for old folks it is the gateway to hell..

A menu is supposed to be in a restaurant not on a fishing boat..

I still have some mental flashbacks about it that are not pretty..

 

Enter Donkey Kong and Centipede.. And the generations that played them..

These kids grew up looking at "screens" and they took to this new technology like a bird to the sky..

My grand daughter showed me shit on my cell phone (Galaxy Note) that I never knew existed.. And she had never seen one before..

"Go to the menu Grandpa.."

I never want to hear those words again.. Unless it is at Ruth Chris..

 

Anyway this new generation of anglers, let's say born mid eighties or so, certainly have an advantage over the rest of us old farts..

Touch screen has helped a lot, but you still gotta get that fucker "Set Up"..

Enter that damn menu button again..

 

I keep talking about the brushpiles holding fish.. And they are. And if you are good with your sidescan it will certainly short cut your job in locating fish.

And I'll have to admit that after having it for ten years, even I have kinda figured out what I am looking at. But I did not want to learn it. I want them fish to be in the hardwoods!

Today's electronics are light years ahead of my old Gen One Lowrance's. But I have been with a lot of buddies that have the latest and greatest.

And I'll have to admit that the Garmin Livescope Panoptics is the shit. It is truly video game fishing.

You don't have to pitch that tree if there ain't a fish on it.. But look at that one. There's three on it..

And for brushpile crappie fishing it is just stupid..

 

Anyway we ain't talked about fishing that much..

Brush and deep rock are the key to catching fish right now. A Texas rigged fluke, big or small might get you bit.

A Senko is a good bet, as is a jig. These are for deeper locales. Of course the jig might catch you a fish in the brushpiles, but it may also catch you a brushpile.. No risk, no reward..

Crankbaits are still catching fish, and if you stick with that big Mo-Fo you just might get rewarded with a big Mo-Fo.

The Rip Rap on the dam and the ledges nearby are still putting out a few good fish.. You need to put your time in and I still say that if you are looking for a fish of a lifetime, I would crank the dam all day long.. Or drag a lightly weighted senko along the same areas.

I'm sure there are others who might disagree with some of these theories.. But it is fishing and if I go out I am starting on a rocky point some where.. And I am not against working it all the way out..

To at least six feet..

This is Falcon after all and there is ALWAYS some shallow fish out there. You just gotta go find em..

 

I have talked about having fished Falcon since I was a little kid. Bout six. And although I wasn't the one driving on the way here, I was still chunkin what was probably a H&H spinner, A Goober Lure, or a T-16 Pico Perch once we got here..

And I have spoken on several occasions about making my first few trips here in a 1956 Chevy (265 V-8 with OD) with my Daddy and Uncle Lewis.. And we had some great times.. And I learned fishing terminology..

Which my Mother later washed out of my mouth with a bar of Dove.

But I reckon if you have been reading my stuff for long you figured out that I got over the taste of that soap..

And I was going thru a box the other day and I happened on an envelope full of evidence.

This ain't the Zapruder tapes or nothin.. Just a snap of my early childhood..

That led to a lifetime of outdoor enjoyment that I am afraid that today's generations will no longer have the opportunity to experience..

Or if they do, it will be damn few..

I could write a book about the hunting and fishing and camping trips we took when I was a kid..

But honestly, I think I already have..

 

Hang in there.. This shit is not gonna last forever, and keep in mind, "That a country boy will survive.."

And whether it be you or me, or both of us, we will carry on in the finest traditions of outdoorsmen.. And we will teach the generations that follow us that us old fucks really did have the world by the ass..

No matter how fancy your new fish finder is..

See you on the water..

June 23, 2020: It is a very strange time in the fishing industry.. And in the firearms industry.. And in the boat industry..

Who would have believed, that a pandemic, real or imagined, depending on your point of view, could have caused the whole country to go fishing.. Or to buy all the ammo and firearms that are available..

Or to set records for boat purchases..

But then again a lot of things do not make sense right now..

With the Whoohan virus going round, there have certainly been a lot of changes made in day to day life, and quite a bit of rearrangement in fishing schedules across the country.

Not only here, but on a national level as I am sure you are aware. Just now are some national trails doing a bit of fishing.. And a lot of it is spectator less as is the case with a lot of sporting events.

But I think it would be fine for the WNBA, San Antonio hockey, and most soccer games to go on..

Nobody goes to that shit anyway..

 

If there is any silver lining in this shit it is surely the reacquainting of the family unit.. At least with families with kids still at home..

And while it may be a strain to make all of it work, we have certainly seen more folks out with their kids.. Looking for a way to get them out of the house and doing something more than looking at their phones or gaming screens.

And in Zapata, many children have been introduced to fishing.. And we have seen a lot of locals taking their kids fishing for the first time..

And with that we have showed a lot of folks how to tie knots, rig a float, and set the drag on a Zebco 33..

And we have sold more shrimp, worms, and chicken liver than any time in our history.

Thank you Zapata for keeping our head above water.

And this is not a local phenomenon, this story is playing out across the country..

Fishing tackle wholesalers are struggling with low inventories, sporadic replacement of goods, and record demand from folks like me.

And the trickle down effect has all retailers with inventories that are less than desired.. And while some manufacturers are producing and shipping products, many are on hiatus and many more are not running at full steam.

Yes, you could say that fishing tackle is selling like crime scene tape in Chicago..

 

There are still some bass fishermen coming to Zapata, but the numbers are surely less than what I would consider normal. Some folks are scared to travel, and local government has not been very friendly to visitors pulling boats..

But if you are hauling in windmill parts from all over the planet.. Well you are welcomed with open arms..

Hypocrites..

 

In any case fishing has been good and bad.. Depending on who you ask. Most of the guides are catching fish pretty good. Most of their fish are coming from planted brush piles.. And not all brush piles are created equal.

There are hundreds of them out there. And finding the right one may take a little work. But if you are decent with your electronics, finding them is not too hard..

Not every fish is on a brushpile. There are still crankbait fish being caught on rocky ridges and humps, probably better than on points.

A few weeks back you could go to any point in Tigers and beat on em.. Not as easy now as it was then.

The shad have thinned out up in the shallows, and have taken back to a bit deeper water. You can find them balled up in a lot of creek channels.. Sometimes there are a lot of fish around them.. And sometimes those fish are white bass..

Lots of surface schooling going on down south these warm days.. Look for birds and slashing and crashing fish..

 

If you are looking to catch some bass, I think it is best to have a few deep running crankbaits, a Mag fluke, a jig, and a senko, smaller version, tied on.

In the brush a texas rigged plastic with heavy line is a good choice.. Try to keep your bait in contact with the brush as long as possible.. And when you get bit you better not pussyfoot around for long.. Getting the fish coming your way is imperative or she'll have blanket woven in the tree with your line quicker than a cat can lick his ass.

I don't know why I like that saying but I do..

And let me tell you that a cat can lick his ass pretty quick..

So try to break that fishes neck.. Give em a knockout punch. And get em coming out of that tree before they figure out what is going on..

 

I told you last go round that we had a bad storm in Zapata.. Straight line winds up to seventy MPH.. Tore the town a new ass..

We had another one last Thursday night on our end of town.. Still a trampoline hanging on the telephone wires just north of us..

And we got another 2.5 inches of rain in about one hour.. I'm talking about it raining like a cow pissing on a flat rock..

We have been releasing some water, so it didn't help the lake level any.. But I can tell you that every stock tank in Zapata County is running over.. And it has been a while..

 

The lake is sitting at 263.60 this am, and that means the old Veleno bridge is about three inches under the water.. Give or take..

There are still two markers on it. pass it on the right going out as always.. If you don't know, ASK!

The state park concrete ramp in pretty much non-useable.. Maybe for a flat bottom..

But we launched a 21 footer on the bank on Friday and never turned a tire.. It is no sweat off the bank with 4X4.. Perfect slope..

The crappie are still excellent in deeper brush piles. Bout 20 feet.. They're not in every one.. But if you find the right one it is easy pickens..

The locals have been wearing out the catfish.. From nice eaters to giants.. And rod and reel gar fishermen have caught a lot of fish lately as well..

I reckon of all the species we have down here, the bass fishing is about the toughest.. But I think that is normal..

 

Every year I talk about the Catch A Special Thrill, or C.A.S.T. fundraiser we do down here to raise money for the organization that's sole mission is to get some special needs kids the opportunity to experience a day of fishing.

Something that may not ever happen for them without this program.

And right now you have the opportunity to treat yourself to some really neat possibilities that may otherwise not be available. From guided fishing trips with the pros to Safaris and fishing products you might want to buy anyway.. And all proceeds go to benefit the C.A.S.T. organization.

Special thanks to all the fishermen, outfitters, and retailers that have graciously donated their time, efforts, and money to this noble cause.

Click this link for all the info and a direct link to the on-line auction that is going on.

There are some great Pros you can buy a day of fishing with in there..

 

If you have any questions about fishing at Falcon right now, please don't hesitate to give us a call.. We have open ramps at both ends of the lake, and plenty of room for you. No crowds down here, especially during the week. So if you are tired of fishing with three hundred of your closest friends, now is a good time to drive south..

We don't have any idiots toppling statues and spray painting slogans of hate on anything either.

But if you want to you can still bring your tent..

Hope to see you before too long.. Keep the faith.. And keep your faith in America. We'll get this shit straightened out.. And I think it is about time to spank the children..

June 16, 2020: After about a week of really low humidity and mornings in the sixties, we are headed back to a more summer like pattern. Which of course includes highs closer to 100° and a southerly breeze bringing in some higher humidity.

Which is what we are all about down here anyway.. It is summer after all.. Or it will be officially in a few days. I was outside at 9:00 last evening and I could still bout read a newspaper..

We have very little wind to contend with on the lake as of late, not counting a few gusts in the mid afternoons. It makes running the lake easy, but it gets a little warm and the fish certainly do not like no wind on a summer afternoon.

Especially if you are fishing any kind of shallow rocks, which may not be the best thing right now.

It appears that deeper fish are becoming more in vogue, and deep crankbaits like the 6XD, or a jig are catching fish in water in the ten to fifteen foot range. A senko is also reported to be catching some fish, both Texas rigged and even on a Carolina rig.

And here is the biggest factor of all. Location.

I have talked to a lot of folks this week, and almost all of them that are catching fish say that the fish are pretty spot specific.

Many of them told me that they have two or three spots that are holding numbers of fish, while other spots with similar features remain fishless or produce only sporadically and many times not at all.

Long story short, fishing this week has been on the tough side.

There are always exceptions to the rule of course, and a few have done well. I guess that is what keeps us out there chasing them.

Folks who live here, and are out several days a week are doing fair, but they are telling me that timing and location are key to catching any numbers of fish.

And it still sounds like the afternoon bite is better than the early morning. Which should change as the moon heads towards darkness more each night..

Long story short.. Heck if I know.. You just gotta go and show it to em..

 

The lake level has dropped a few inches and is sitting at 264.32. We let out a small burst of water the last few days for some reason.. But it appears to have slowed a bit this am..

Who the hell knows.. Unless people are standing on roofs in the valley we are always releasing water..

The Mexicans have still not released any water of consequence into the Rio Grande. And as a matter of fact, farmers (reportedly) in Mexico have staged protests and demanded that they not release water to the US at all.

Or maybe they hired some of them antifa motherfuckers to do it for them..

Just call 1-800 Rent-A-Riot..

We'll send some brick throwin, window breakin, car burnin little masked son of a bitches to your location of choice and we'll fuck up your town till you say when..

Easy as gettin a pizza delivered..

But I digress..

 

Supposedly the US government is putting pressure on the Mexicans to repay their water debt to the US.. That means to me.. And you.. And the folks all along the Rio Grande from Presidio in Big Bend to the delta at the mouth of the river at Brownsville.

According to the latest numbers, the Mexicans have to release 455,000 Acre Feet of water in the next three months or they will be in violation of the treaty..

That sounds like a lot of water, but it really ain't in the big picture.

Amistad is forty something feet low, and has 1,144,000 Acre Feet in storage currently. 35% full..

Falcon is almost forty feet low, and currently we have only 585,000 Acre Feet in the tank. 22% full..

If Mexico repaid all this water, and we put it all in Falcon, we would still be at less than 50% of capacity.

Would I take it? Sure.. But this is not a long term cure to our problems.

We can only fix this problem by bringing water from northeast of us to west Texas..

It can be done..

Falcon, and ultimately Amistad reservoirs were built to help mitigate the flooding along the Rio Grande. And ultimately to regulate its flow to provide a reliable water supply to the inhabitants that live near it.

Growth was certainly predictable along the river, but no one really knew what the future held in store in the middle fifties. And having a controllable, for the most part, and consistent water supply for all parts south of Falcon's dam led to more and more water demand.

Makes sense.. Build it and they will come.. And they did.. And still are..

But a hog has only so many teats..

And right now Falcon has a liter of twenty sucking on her. And sooner or later the sow or some of the piglets will die..

And unless we give the sow some more groceries, things are not looking so good.

Now that's a hell of a fuckin' analogy, but it is about as good as I could come up with.. And I think you get my point.

Something needs to be done.

Enforcement of the water treaty with Mexico is a good start. But it is only treating a symptom of the disease..

The country is printing money so fast that it is running out of ink.. So lets print a little more and spend it on water infrastructure and build the damn ditch from Oklahoma or Missouri or I don't care where and send all that flood water that they would love to get rid of to west Texas..

This ain't rocket science.. If we can put a man on the moon, build the Hoover Dam, and invent a motorcycle that can jump over twenty seven buses we sure as hell can dig a ditch.

And I'll guess that this project would benefit mankind more than two of the above mentioned..

I'll get off the soapbox for now..

 

Catfish and Crappie are still biting like they should. And good numbers of those two species are being caught..

There have been quite a few gar chasers down here lately, and they have killed some nice ones. They have also whacked a lot of grass carp and tilapia. And the common carp are thick up spawning on a lot of the banks as well..

You can shoot in a crowd and your arrow might look like a shish-ka-bob.. That's why I keep my bow cranked to 70 pounds..

Of course I miss often and I am hard on arrows and tips..

 

TPWD did stock about 128,000 Florida bass fingerlings here last week. All of them were released in the Veleno.

I hear that the Whoohan virus had a lot to do with low production numbers this year.. Not sure how that worked..

Must have stopped the fish from fucking..

 

Bass Champs is going to Amistad this weekend, for two one day tourneys on Saturday and Sunday. They are also going to a three fish limit for these two..

Damn good idea this time of year..

Sure would have liked to have seen them down here two weeks ago as scheduled, but as you know our county officials uninvited them. It WAS NOT Bass Champs that decided not to come to Falcon.

That probably only cost the county a hunnert and fifty grand or so..

If you are planning on fishing out there and need a Mexican fishing license give us a call and we'll have one in your inbox in a jiffy.. Or if you're old school and want one via USPS we can do that as well..

 

I have got to go, as I am working on a new product that I am trying to get to market. And so far it is "holding up" pretty good.

With all these copper infused knee braces, back braces, support socks, underwear...

I have invented a copper infused condom..

And just like those other products, this thing is made ready to go to work..

Gives hours of support and will let you take your workouts to the next level..

Comes in sizes from Pee-Wee Herman to Big John Holmes.. So if you have a phallus as big as Dallas.. We have you covered.. Literally.. In copper..

Soon to be available at your neighborhood drug store..

Product warning: "Do not use in Female Superior position during a thunderstorm.."

 

I better go before I start talking about Seattle, Antifa, thugs, rioters, looters, and the rest of the sewer rats out there..

It's hard to wrap your head around..

I got some thoughts.. Next time..

Buy American where you can!

Thanks for your support and we'll see you when we do!

June 9, 2020: It's a hot, breezy, and gonna be the hottest day of the year so far today.. Least that is what the weather guru's say.. The tropical storm that went east of us (like always) pulls the desert air from over Mexico upon us and it's like pulling the featherbed over you in the middle of August when you're sleeping without air conditioning..

But after today we are going to get a reprieve with a cool front and highs only in the middle nineties.. That's more like it..

We have been blessed with a few days of low and almost no winds.. Low winds good.. No winds bad..

Falcon fishes differently due to several factors at times.. Rising water, no current to speak of, big moon out all night, and no breeze can make for some tough fishing.

And I experienced some of it over the weekend.. That don't mean that other folks didn't do decently, but the fishing was a little tough, especially in the AM when the fish just went to bed..

I heard from several folks that the afternoon and evening bite has been much better. But the older and softer I get I just don't prefer to fish in the heat, specially thru this stretch.

Me and a buddy launched at the county ramp on Sunday morning, and ran straight to the Salanaias.. And we fished a few spots where I had done well the last few times I had been out there, but we sucked..

Then we cranked some rocky banks at the mouth of the Salanaias, with only a muy chiquito to show..

Then we proceeded to the rip-rap on the dam where we had the best luck of the morning.. Two fish.. Neither over two pounds..

We hop-scotched back along the Texas side on the way home, but our luck did not improve and all we did was run into some white bass..

It was noon and my 84 year old partner said I was tired.. We were on the trailer at 12:12..

Well that sounds encouraging, don't it? I have no defense for my performance other than we were not throwing what the fish were eating where and when they were eating..

Now all that being said, I have talked to several folks that have been doing pretty good. But a good day as of late starts in the afternoon, from about two till six, and catching fifteen or twenty has replaced the forty or fifty from two weeks ago.

I am sure as we get away from the full moon it will improve in the mornings.

This is still Falcon and there have been some very nice fish caught. And I have seen a few pics of DD's this week, and a multitude of six and seven pound fish. But there have surely been some man hours put in to catch em..

And I am sure you are tired of hearing it, but crankbaits and C-rigs still seem to be catching the lions share of fish.

There is probably not a bad crankbait to throw, as long as it gets to the rocks. Shad patterns and something with a little chartreuse on it is a good idea.

Flukes and smaller baits seem to get more bites on the C-rigs.

We flipped fifty or sixty trees on Sunday, and never got bit.. But I have heard of a few fish being caught on the hardwoods..

Speaking of which, the trees directly across from the Veleno have been inundated with muddy and murky water for the last six months.. But the water color on the river right now is the best looking I have seen in ages..

Low winds, no current, and grass covered banks have led to the clearest water in quite some time..

Some of you tree flippers need to get over there and dunk some plastic in them trees. I am sure all the fish have not swam to the south end of the lake.

I just got a report from a buddy in Laredo that fished the Laredo Bass Club tourney on Sunday. They fished a three fish limit because of the heat.

Eighteen+ pounds won it, and fourth place was over fifteen. He said there were lots of four pounders caught and there were about 35 teams in the tourney.

Good to see a few tournaments coming back to the lake..

Speaking of coming back to the lake. I have never seen the lake being so utilized by the locals.. We also have a lot of folks here on weekends from Laredo and from Starr county south of us.

The state park has been at regulated capacity for the last few weekends. And from what I hear, it has pretty much been the same across the state.

Folks are getting itchy.. And they are damn tired of staying at home.. Cain't say I blame em..

And from what I have been seeing this last two weeks, you can pretty much say that social distancing is out the window around here..

Sales of cast nets, Zebco 33's, and terminal tackle has sustained us as of late..

Now if I could just get in some cast nets, Zebco 33's, and hooks and sinkers I would be in good shape.

Orders placed are certainly not arriving anywhere close to filled.. But we are making the best of it and seeking other sources for product.

Never thought I'd order thirty cast nets on E-bay..

We are still well stocked on most bass tackle and plastics, because we keep a deep stock of the stuff that moves..

We got you covered..

 

Here's the nuts and bolts:

Lake level is at 264.64, and is rising ever so slightly.

Water temps are right around 83 degrees.

The county ramp is fine, but may have a little silt on the edges on any given day.

The state park concrete ramp is being used by a few bass boats as well. I had a friend launch there twice last weekend and he said it was no problem. I usually wait to say it is good till we are at about 265.. Or maybe a bit higher..

I guess the state dredged out the channel while the lake was down.. (NOT!)

But in any case it is reported to be doing fine..

Back here in the Veleno. The old bridge is about five or six inches under the water. Back in the kill zone.. There is currently one of those large orange markers on the west end.. 10' long and a foot around.. Go west of it coming and going. There is also a marker in the middle of the bridge or thereabouts.. DO NOT run in between the markers!

Run west of this marker.

We are supposed to get about 130,000 baby bass tomorrow, delivered by TPWD. If all goes as scheduled. At least this year we will have some grass and weeds for them to hide in.. The last few years we have had nothing but rocks and a few sticks..

There are all kinds of fish being caught as of late, including a lot of Alligator gar. The Veleno had some running water in it and still does even after six days of no rain.. And the gar love that running water.

The catfish love current, and while the creeks and the river were running the rod and reel fishermen were tearing them up.

Over the weekend, crappie were very good on deeper brushpiles, and you just can't believe the quality/size of these fish.

And the crazy ass white bass may attack you from any angle, anywhere.. And more and more of them are starting to school up in the open water on the south end of the lake.

Once we get past this hot spell we'll probably get a little busier than we are today and yesterday. And we have a decent chance of rain coming tomorrow..

It seems that the weather pattern may have changed a bit this spring and I hope the wet continues..

This could be our year!

Yall take care of yourselves in these crazy times.. As will we..

And hopefully I'll see you across the counter or on the water soon!

June 2, 2020: It's been a weird time around here.. It's been a weird time in Texas.. Shit the whole world is in a strange place..

Maybe it is time for the return of the King..

But until that time we humans are going to have to muddle through life and hopefully find a way to peacefully co-exist..

Because what we have going on now here in the USA is absolutely heartbreaking.. And I just about cannot watch it any more..

We all have our own little corner of the world. And I implore you to try and make yours the friendliest square on the board.. As will I.. As I have always tried to do..

 

There are certainly more important things in life than fishing.. But man cannot live by work and worry alone.. And it is internationally recognized that fishing is about as therapeutic an activity as there is in existence..

And you know me.. I would never go against academia.. Cept I did not have to go to college to figure it out..

 

Well being this is a fishing report (allegedly) we ought to talk about fishing.. And a lot has happened in the last week since I wrote. Most of it having to do with catching another eighteen inches of water..

We are still on a very slow rise, and water is still running in a few of the major creeks, although it has slowed quite a bit.. Two weeks or so ago the old Veleno bridge was exposed from the roadbed up.. Today the rails are back under water by about three or four inches.

And you know what that means,. The bridge is in perfect position to clothesline your lower unit. Currently there is one large buoy tied to the west end of the bridge. Keep it on your left when going out of the Veleno.

Most of you know the drill.. But unfortunately there are always a few newbies that come to Falcon that we don't get to talk to and when the water levels are wrong this shit happens..

We still have not talked about fishing..

Out in the lake there are a few floaters, but not a whole lot of consequence. But be aware that there is a possibility of some stuff floating around.

Run the channel from the Veleno down to about marker seven, as there are a lot of old hardwoods out on the flats if you meander off the beaten path. The lake opens up a lot south of that, but it is still a good idea to run the river channel.. Especially if you are new to Falcon or are in water you are not used to..

And if you have any questions you can certainly ask us here and we will tell you all we know.. Which won't take that much time..

We have had some downpours as of late, and keeping the county ramp cleaned off and the parking area in shape has been a full time job. But the ramp here in the Veleno is fine. The ramp at the state park is still at least eighteen inches from being useable..

Meanwhile we are stuck with launching off the bank in the same old places.. Maybe I shouldn't have used the word stuck..

4X4 is recommended down at the state park..

We still have not talked about fishing.

 

Restaurants and motels are back to being open around here, and you should have no trouble finding food or lodging. Our gasoline prices are still the highest in the state, so fill up in Laredo or wherever.. There is no reason we should be forty or fifty cents a gallon higher than San Antonio.. Or Corpus.. But we are..

I have been struggling to keep the shelves stocked, as the supply and shipping chain has had a bad link or two. Oh I still got a ton of shit.. But lots of little things have been hard to come by.. And some big things as well..

I got an order in yesterday that I ordered on the 23rd.. Not of May.. But of April.. Six weeks out.. Because the suppliers have been so swamped..

Yes the fishing industry has carried the country while we have sat on our asses and accomplished little.. If anything..

So good job fishermen and gun owners/buyers.. We have carried the country on our back while no one else was out and about.. And we did it at a safe distance..

BTW March set an all time monthly record for background checks, and April set the record for April.. We bout sold all the guns and ammo we could get our hands on..

 

I personally have had about all of this Woohan shit I can handle.. I shouldn't even know what the fuck Whoohan is..

 

The fishing around here has remained pretty steady.. Last week we had a few windy days when few fish were caught, but it is damn hard to stand on the deck with waves washing your feet every third one.. And a bit harder to feel a bite.

The good days were sprinkled with good reports and bad, but folks in the know have been catching them pretty consistently..

Crankbaits in about ten feet of water have caught a lot of nice fish. A five or six XD crank bait in Sexy Shad or Citrus Shad have been about as good as any. Of course rocks are the key to catching fish.. Rocks with brush piles on them are even better..

Speaking of brushpiles, it has been reported that a lot of brush piles have been stolen.. Drug off and relocated to who knows where..

And I gotta admit that this practice is pretty chickenshit.. Brushpiles are pretty much public domain once they are in the lake, but have the courtesy and respect to leave someone else's hard work in place.

Fish em, enjoy em.. But leave em where someone else put em..

Or go cut your own!

A squarebill bite is still in play in many areas, especially when wind is pushing shad up on a rocky point or over the top of a hump. This is a staple on Falcon, and I don't care what time of year it is, I never go out without a squarebill tied on.

I can't count the times I have seen a pod of fish blow up on a school of shad, and having a squarebill or a trap at the ready will almost always get you bit.

A Carolina rig is also another must have right now, and it has been for two months. Smaller baits are working well on it, and a fluke is still hard to beat. Or a U-Vibe in a Zoom bait..

And don't be afraid to cast that C-rig right up on the bank and work it out to twelve or fourteen feet.

More and more deep fish have been reported as of late as the water has warmed and summer approaches. A jig has caught a few good fish lately, and of course hopping one down a rocky slope is a good idea.. Something in a greenish or brown color with a small matching trailer is a good choice..

Even though the water releases have about ceased, areas near the gates on the dam, and the rip-rap itself has continued to put out fish. And if I was after nothing but a big fish, I would throw a big ass crankbait along the rip-rap all freakin day..

Sooner or later those deep water fish are going to move up on those rocks to eat.. I hear about it almost every day..

Of course this area is a community hole.. For good reason..

 

The crappie are still loaded in the right brushpiles, and some of them are two inches wide.. I mean chunks.. They are amazing.. We also have a ton of small fish in the chain, and sometimes you get on a pile and all that are in it are six to eight inch fish.. There are three distinct year classes of crappie around here.. And the future looks good for the species.

White bass are two on a crankbait in some areas.. And a lot of those areas are the same ones you'd throw that crankbait for bass.. Sometimes you just gotta move on.. They can be that thick..

With the rising water, a ton of baitfish, carp, tilapia, and alligator gar have invaded the shallows. And the gar are spawning in the creeks where the water has been flowing in for a week or so..

The grass carp finally have some grass to eat.. And they are up in the top two feet of water.. Everywhere..

It is amazing what a little water on the way up can do..

I will post some pics one of these days.. I am finally getting a bit caught up with my projects.

 

Meanwhile if you need to spend some time in isolation, or you just want to get away from the insanity for a while, I can assure you that Zapata is about the quietest and safest city around..

Come see us and get some H2O therapy.. It's good for the soul.

May 26, 2020: This may sound crazy.. But I just have not had time to get to the computer in over a week.. As you may have noticed.. I've got a few projects going that the weather has really messed me up on..

I have been praying for rain for years.. And we have gotten it lately..

A few days ago we got a screaming thunderstorm that dropped over an inch here but lots more in some places.. Lots more..

And last night we got about three inches here in Zapata, and either a small tornado or some bad ass straight line winds.. The whole town is really torn up..

Of course some places were left untouched.. But the Post Office for example, no longer has a roof.. Lots of businesses on main street (83) got torn a new ass.. Trees and light poles uprooted and broken all over the place..

We had some minor damage here but nothing serious..

But Zapata as a whole has got some fixin to do..

 

Last week the wind blew.. And Blew.. And Blew.. And it was a struggle to fish. Anywhere.. Although a few folks did.. But it was tough going..

And reports during the gales were not very good.

But Sunday and yesterday gave a reprieve, and good fishing was reported by most all we talked to.

Crankbaits and Carolina rigs are still as good as anything going.. But I have heard recently that the Senko bite has come around, and fish are returning to the brush piles scattered from one end of the lake to the other.. Fish it on a light Texas rig..

There are still a lot of fish on the shallow rocky points. Out to about ten to twelve feet..

Several of the guides are out deeper trying to establish an offshore bite, and they have had hit and miss results. But I have heard of a jig bite trying to start up..

But the fish have certainly not abandoned the rocks as of yet.. And a lot of them never will.

The water temp has been held down by the rains this last couple of weeks, and right now we are hanging around 83°. It can certainly be warmer this time of year.

Overall fishing remains good, and we have had quite a few folks down giving it a go.. And the locals have been out in force beating the Veleno into a froth and having pretty decent results. On all species..

 

We have caught about two feet of water from our low a couple of weeks ago, and I am not quite sure just where we will end up with the current rainfall. We should catch about another foot or so from this mornings and last nights rain up above us.. Currently all the local creeks have been running.. And the ground is wet..

We'll see shortly..

 

I am about aggravated with the supply chain that has worked intermittently as of late. Shipping from anywhere is a guess and this Woohan shit has about fucked the world over..

Inventory at distributors is hit or miss, and I have a few pegs I cannot get product for. And I hate to see empty hooks..

Thankfully we have remained pretty busy and if I could get anything to sell I might be able to make a living.. Fortunately I keep a lot of backstock.. But I will have to admit it is running a bit low.. And some things are just made of unobtanium..

 

In my previous life I was Construction Superintendent in San Antonio.. And I have poured enough concrete to fill Falcon lake.. Well maybe Medina..

And I have been trying to get a 60X40 slab poured at our subdivision for over a week. And last nights three inches has delayed us another couple of days.. And I don't know how rain can even get in a gauge when it is coming sideways..

But all I can say is this too shall pass and thank you Lord for the rain..

 

Yesterday as you know was Memorial Day. And under normal conditions I would never let the day go by without writing a bit about what the day means.

And what qualifies me to say anything about it? Because what I would say about it is only my opinion..

But I reckon that one of the rights that was bestowed upon me, not just by the Bill of Rights, but by the very men that this day is all about, is the ability to speak my opinion as I see fit..

And I have been known to do it on occasion.

And if you want to get real about it, it's not words on paper that make a people free..

It's men with big balls, boots, guns, and a finger in the air for any and all who might want to infringe on or take away those rights.

So many in the world have no idea what I am talking about.. Those that have never tasted the sweetness of freedom. To do as you wish, without fear..

Within good reason of course..

What a novel concept America was.. Unprecedented at the time..

And I'd have to say that the founders were about the Ballsiest badasses that we have ever had living between the oceans..

And all those that have bought into the idea, that knew and know that what we have is worth dying for.. And many, many have...

Well you and me owe them a debt we can never repay..

But Ain't That America..

Thanks to all who served and are serving now.. And never forget those who gave their lives for this great concept.

You know that if the shit ever hits the fan the biggest army in the world will mobilize with a base in every town in the States..

I don't think that will ever happen..

Because every country on the planet knows it would..

 

I gotta go straighten my flagpoles and put up some new flags.. Them tornadoes are a sun-bitch.

Come see us when you can..

We gonna survive all this shit.. Here in Zapata, Texas..

USA

May 18, 2020: It's been darn near two weeks since I have written, and some folks have been e-mailing me wondering if I have been taken out by the Woohan..

But I'm still here and the rumors of my demise are pre-mature..

And I have been busier than a hooker at a Democratic National Convention.. And if they don't have a convention this year cause of the Woohan, I wonder if Pelosi will come up with a stimulus package to save the call girls..

Maybe they could come up with a catchy slogan like, "No Hooker Left Behind.."

Might have to work on that a little..

 

The lake has risen about a foot due to local rains, and a reduction in the amount of water we are releasing.. And the valley also got some very good rain in a lot of areas so that is an immense help.. Keep bringing it Lord.. And Thank you..

We are sitting at 260.67 this morning, or 40.53 feet low.. We are on a very slow rise that is likely to peter out in the next few days.. But it was good to see water still running in the Veleno yesterday..

Despite all the doom and gloom about water levels, we still have a lot of water to fish.. Don't let the lower water levels affect your decision on whether to come down or not.. Fishing is very good..

Four wheel drive is certainly a plus on the south end of the lake, but a new access point is being used across the creek from where we have been launching. And it is working very well, and two wheel drive is doable with 95% certainty..

Ask when you get here and we'll give you directions and do's and dont's.. Plenty of parking on that side as well but do not park directly across from the launching area.. It ain't rocket science..

The Tigers is so full of fish they can't be counted.. Rocky humps and ends of points have been stacked with fish. There is also a shit load of white bass in there, so if you want to get the kids in on some good catchin', bring em down here and let em catch a few hundred.. Federal Warning: This kind of practice may lead a child to a life long addiction..

Crankbaits and c-rigs are still about as good as it gets, and the shad in the shallow rocks are still tremendous.. The Spro or the Strike King square bills are hard to beat..

A 5XD or similar is a great bait to tickle down the rocky slopes, gently bumping it off the rocks.

All the coves South of Pierce's can have a bunch of fish in them on the gravel. And you'll find the water clarity on the lower end of the lake to be much better.

Although I did talk to a feller on Saturday that said they caught a bunch of fish from the Mexican trees just across from the Veleno. He said the dirty water didn't bother em, and they just went to a darker bait.. I would think a Tilapia Z-Craw or a Junebug Red Fighting Frog would whack em.. Or a black and blue creature bait..

Trees in the Salanaias are still putting out fish, despite being hammered by fishermen. And the Dam put out several PB's this weekend including a couple of DD's.. On crankbaits..

Overall fishing is very good.. I'd probably tell you to quit your job and get your ass down here.. But shit you probably already don't have a job..

So just get your ass down here..

And when you do, stop in the store for some launching/lake running information.. It ain't hard to navigate but you need to run the channel especially on the top half of the lake..

There are hardwoods on the flats off the river channel that gave hardwoods their name.. They make Viagra out of these sum-bitches.. And they will mess up a lower unit as good as a rock can..

Fair warning..

 

By now I am sure you have heard that Bass Champs was forced to cancel their tournament down here scheduled for the end of the month.

And many of you probably do not know it, but it was not Bass Champs that decided to cancel..

We had been in discussion on how we were going to make it work, and we certainly would have.

The Zapata County judge and commissioners are the ones that made them not welcome.

While we have a ton of out of towners here working on wind and solar projects..

But I guess it is up to the elected to pick the winners and losers..

Follow the money..

But Zapata county certainly just passed up an easy 100K of money spent here..

While the rest of the state opens up, we take the opposite approach..

I have no words. Well that's not true..

I have plenty of them.. But I have to run a business in this town, and do business with the aforementioned.. So I'll just leave my thought's to your imagination..

 

It has been a frustrating time in the ordering and receiving department around here. I have so many things ordered that I may or may not receive that I don't even know what the hell I have ordered any more..

Oh I got the basics.. And a lot more.. But I hate to see empty pegs on my walls.. It's getting better, but some things just are not available.. And I am sure this ripple affect will take a while to dissipate.

But we are hanging in there, and I hope you are too..

And if you are in need of spending some of that stimulus money, fishing is a great way to do it.. And it'll get you out of the house.. And maybe make life just a little more bearable for a while..

Come see us.. And we'll try to figure out who it is behind that mask..

P.S. Masks are optional in FLT..

May 5, 2020: It was the best of times.. It was the worst of times..

What that shit means I really don't know..

But let's take a shot at it..

Worst: The lake has dropped to 259.65, or about 41.5 feet low.. Here's the Old Veleno Bridge.. I have not been out in a few, and I hear you can see the deck now.. So if you hit this thing now it is on you.. Pass to the west as always.. Plenty of water but scrape the bridge.. There is a rockpile twenty yards west that will be in play shortly..

Best: The lake is fishing as good and as big as it has in a long time. Many times we are catching a lot of fish, and good ones, but they seem to be concentrated in a few small areas and it can get kind of busy on those spots.

But right now we are catching fish from one end of the lake to the other. Not every tree or rock has a fish on it.. But a lot of em do..

Crankbaits are still catching a lot of fish. And a C-rig remains a great way to cover a lot of territory, fishing it from the bank out to about ten feet. Long points, fished across or along have been good.

Isolated rocky patches, even if they do not have a break on them have been good as well.

Old houses are holding fish as well. Rockpiles.. Rockpiles good..

The rock, especially shallow has had a ton of shad on it, and there is still a bit of the shad spawn going on. Big bait balls are still roaming around off creek channels, and of course where there is food, there is fish.

Lots of white bass are also hanging around those bait balls as well.

Flipping trees, which is probably the most funniest shit ever invented, is still doing pretty good as well. It's funny how some trees in similar water don't hold fish while others do.. And sometimes you can catch a bunch in a concentrated area.

That's fishin, Man..

The crappie are still excellent in deeper brush piles, and a few folks that are good with their electronics have found them stacked up on rocky break lines in water about fifteen or so feet deep.

Two pound fish have been very common..

Here's a couple of ugly fishermen with a few from Saturday.

Things are going about as good as can be expected down here.. We have had seven cases of the "Rona" in Zapata county. No fatalities and several recovered and a few pending..

But overall nothing very serious.

But I guess it is serious if it happens to you..

My supply line has had a few interruptions, and some of them are maddening. Fortunately right before all this shit hit the fan, Bass Champs was scheduled to be here in a week or so, and I had ordered a heaping helping of goodies for the store.. And it has sustained my stock pretty well.. But I hate it when I look across the store and see an empty hook.

And I've got a few.. But help is on the way as I have some shit that is in transit.. PTL..

And we'll be in good shape when Bass Champs makes its return on the 30th of this month..

Make your reservations now as this tournament is a "GO".

And if you need a Mexican license before the tournament, give us a call and we will get you hooked up. There are days when the Mexican license connection is non functional, like right now, but if you give us a few days notice I am sure we can take care of you..

 

These are peculiar times, and I have certainly never seen anything like it.. And I am sure you have not either..

Remember in the old days when we quarantined the sick, not the healthy?

And what is right or wrong is still anybody's guess in some circumstances.

The "Experts" have been none too accurate in predicting the outcome of this shit.

But I got a pretty good idea of what is going to happen if shit don't change soon..

I personally believe that there is a ton of politics and a ton of big business involved in all of this stuff.

And blaming the President for not being Nostrajesus is fucking absurd.

I shudder to think what would have happened if the Clinton regime would have been in power..

And the Democrats now saying the President was slow to act at the beginning of this Woohan shit is absolutely the most hypocritical thing I have ever heard.

Hypocrites is being nice.. Idiots.. Just trying to bring on the downfall of the US as we know it..

To what end? They are just plain Un-American..

 

Let me ask you a question.. If you are a Democrat.. Dyed in the wool..

Have you listened to any of Joe Biden's interviews? Have you seen him speak? With or without a teleprompter?

I don't think this man could read 'Green Eggs and Ham' without fucking it up..

If there ever was a candidate for Prevagin this man is it..

His cognitive function is about as sharp as a bowling ball.

I have no idea about his previous sexual encounters. But the Democrats know he is innocent of all charges. Just like they knew Kavanaugh was..

But they seem to be approaching it a little differently.

Hypocrite Motherfuckers.. Obstructionists.. With an Anti-American agenda that would turn our country into a third world shithole in a couple of generations..

Insulting to the hundreds of thousands that have given all to America. I hope they meet up in the afterlife and the Vets stomp a mud hole in their ass..

Of course the Vets will have to get a day pass to hell..

 

Well I better go have a beer and chill out.. It's AM around here.. But it's five o'clock somewhere..

Get your ass down here and catch some fish.. You ain't doing nothing anyway..

See you on the water!

April 28, 2020: It sure is good to have things kinda back to normal.. If there is such a thing in this day and age..

At least we can go fishing and get out and enjoy some sunshine. And we have had plenty of that here lately.

We have been in the nineties this week, with a little wind mixed in, but certainly fishable if you have the itch. Yesterday saw not too many boats on the water as it was a bit blustery..

The lake is dropping a bit a day, and I don't see any real relief in sight.. But I never do right before the lake fills up.. That's the way it works.. One day we are bitching about how low the lake is.. And the next day we are planning a flood party..

But it has been ten years since the last time we danced in the streets..

We due, Baby..

We're sitting around forty feet low, and a lot of you have not seen the lake at this level.. And it has been a while since we been here.. A long while..

Something good gotta happen soon..

 

In spite of the low water.. Or maybe because of it, the fishing has been as good as it has been in years.. Lots of quality fish being caught.. And they are absolutely the baddest fish on the planet..

As far as bass goes.. They ain't Peacocks.. But they are close..

Usually I will tell you about one bait or method that is better than other.. But currently I know people that are on patterns as different as a bag of Skittles..

Some folks are throwing nothing but crankbaits.. And some folks ain't throwing anything that ain't got a weight on it..

So what that tells me is that the fish are just plain biting..

So you might want to get your ass down here and get you some..

Rocks. And trees.. Not necessarily in the same area..

Shad are still spawning on windy rocky banks.. Get you a square bill and get after it.. You can drag a C-rig on the same points and ledges out just a little deeper..

You can flip a creature bait at a hardwood in about 0 to 6 feet and catch em.. Pay attention to the shady side like I have told you for years..

And if you are doing that you better crank that drag down.. These bastards will have you wrapped around that tree faster than a cat can lick his ass..

I don't mean to make it sound too easy.. But it has been..

 

I have got my ass chewed a couple of times for not posting this picture from a couple of weeks ago.. But like I said it has been strange times..

But here's a pic of Evelyn Ward with her personal best with a 9lb 6oz fish from a couple of weeks ago.. Falcon loves the Ladies..

It mighta come off the dam..

 

Shifting gears...

I'm not sure where all this Woohan Virus shit is headed.. But I hope this crap will make us as Americans rethink a lot of stuff.. Like where we get our stuff.. And where our stuff is made..

We can't do a lot about our elected officials that are currently in power.. But we can do a little more research on the ones we elect in the future..

And I recommend it.. Because in the big picture, they decide where America gets its imports..

It appears that we have had too many eggs in one basket, with so many of our products coming from China.

Sure we all want things to be inexpensive.. So we can buy more cheap disposable shit..

I think Americans have so much discretionary income.. And they are going to spend it on something.. Mostly because it makes you feel like you have accomplished something.. By bringing home that item that you always wanted.

I'm guilty of it too.. And when my TV dies, my new one is not getting smaller I guarantee you..

But maybe a little less materialism might be good for us.

 

Texas is opening up a few businesses that have been on lockdown for a while. Some partially and some full bore.. With some precautionary requirements of course.

And I think this is just in time to save the sanity of a lot of people..

We have talked about hope before. And a man without hope is a lost soul for sure..

Some of you may not have been affected by all of this shit.. But many of you have..

And I hope for you that things get a lot better in the very near future..

 

And I was wondering the other day, why did so many people that were not affected by all the closures, that were/are still getting paid their full salaries, Social Security, disability, retirement, etc. need to get a government check?

If your income did not change, why the need?

Just some food for thought.. Maybe they thought it was more about fairness than necessity? But it is none the less another example of government waste.. In the Billions..

 

Speaking of TV.. I guess most folks that have been in the quarantine/isolation/distancing mode have watched more TV than anytime in history. At least according to what I read..

I like a good movie as good as the next guy.. And we all differ as to what we think a good movie is.. I dig it..

To me a good movie has to have some car chases and wrecks of course.. Some Shootin.. A little frontal nudity ain't a bad thing..

And of course the good guys have to win in the end..

Basically anything that ain't on the Hallmark channel might work.. Oh and that British shit ain't gonna cut it either..

But I think I have watched about everything I can.. I'm at max capacity..

It's a good thing I have a shit load of Jeopardy's recorded.. I'm starting to get some of the answers right on the ones I have seen five times or more..

My wife has absolutely outlawed Tombstone, Braveheart, The Shawshank Redemption, The Outlaw Josey Wales, and the Wizard of Oz..

Although the other day I did slip in a little bit of Casablanca while she dozed off..

"Play it again, Sam."

Naw she ain't letting me play it again.. Any of em.. So I'm relegated out the the shop if I want to watch some good shit..

 

And if you are staying at home with your wife, full time, and you're not newly hooked up and in the infatuation stage, these can be some trying times..

I am not sure if it is better or worse with a house full of kids.. I only have experience with the former. And yes we are well past the infatuation stage.. If you get my drift..

I think if I had to stay at home all the time, and could not get out of the house, I think I would loose it..

I gotta be doing something.. Whether it is woodworking, fishing, arrowhead hunting or whatever..

Hell my yard is 100% zeroscaped and I bought a zero turn so I can mow the common areas in my subdivision..

If this arthritis shit ever sidelines me permanently, I'm not sure what I might do..

But I am going to fight it till the end..

And I recommend that you do too..

So get your ass down here and fish while you still can..

And I'll see you on the water!

April 22, 2020: It's a strange new world out there.. And here.. And everywhere you look..

With money gushing out of the government like we have tons of it.. Wonder where they are getting it.

And I think the government is part Idiot and part Genius.. And they sure as fuck need to work on the ratio..

Ah, but who gives a shit as long as we can go fishing..

And by God we have open boat ramps here in Zapata, and I asked the county to go down and clean off the ramp and Shazam!

Thanks commissioner Martinez..

And just in time because the fish are on the bite.. Fact is that the fish have been on the bite for the last three weeks.. We just couldn't get at em..

I fished Monday with John Adami and we pretty much had our way with em. Biggest went about six and a half to seven.. But we caught em every way we fished for em.

But specially in the trees.. Jimmie Like..

There is just nothing better than flipping a plastic bait in a hardwood, feeling a thump, or just something funny, and putting a Babe Ruth, Sonny Liston, Arnold Palmer, Chuck Norris or you pick the badass type of swing on em..

That's how I got all those Medina lake fish to be fourteen inches long; by stretching their necks on the hookset.. Occasionally you can turn one of them Medina fish into a projectile..

You ain't yanking these Falcon fish out of the water.. The Mo-Fo's are pumped up and full of piss and vinegar. And I mean they will flat ass put it on you and will not give up till they are out of the water..

And then they'll try to bite you..

We caught a lot of fish on Rage Craws, but I have heard of every plastic under the sun catching fish.. From baby brush hogs to senkos, to lizards to U-vibe worms..

Crankbaits and spinnerbaits are also doing well on rocks.. Nothing changed.. Fish are out points and offshore ledges..

They're on brushpiles..

Hell just go fishing..

The lake has dropped to 261.37, or almost forty feet low. Sounds bad.. And it is.. But we seen it a lot lower and there is still a lot of water out there..

Worst part of the whole thing is the lack of a concrete ramp on the south end of the lake. But with four wheel drive you will have no problem launching and retrieving your boat at the state park.

Here in Zapata we are on concrete for a long time yet.. Unless something crazy happens..

The old Veleno bridge is probably sixteen inches out of the water, so if you hit it now I am going to take away your boat operators license. If you float up..

Tommy and I went out and rounded up the buoys that were on it at one time and are working on getting them back on the bridge.. Just in case you know..

Hopefully this summer will be a wet and wild one and we can catch some water. Or we'll be seining these fish next year..

 

When I wrote on the 17th, I was not sure when the lake would be back to open for fishing. At least on the Texas side..

And while I had no luck with county officials opening the Zapata boat ramps, I decided I would take a different approach and contact a few folks I knew might have interest in helping get us access to the lake.

And it might have been purely coincidental that the Governor decided to open most all state parks on Monday, three days ago.

But it could also have been due to some influence exerted by two of our State Representatives, namely Lyle Larson and Tracy King.

Thank you! to both of you for your involvement..

 

I have been openly and actively campaigning to have the lake open back up to fishermen. And we welcome you to Zapata with open arms..

But please keep in mind we too are trying to prevent the spread of the Woohan virus, and during your visit please know that we have rules to follow here as well.

A face cover is is required when you are in public for the most part, and certainly when you are in any kind of business.

Most businesses have a notice on their doors, and often a doorkeeper to limit the number of folks inside at any time..

You know the drill by now..

And I know that fishermen are some of the most intelligent people in the world.

So I don't think we will have any problems we did not have before..

Give us a call if you have any questions at all..

Momma? Who was that Masked Man?

I don't know son.. But he left this..

April 19, 2010: It's Sunday morning and I have been awake since 5:00.. And we were not going to open today,.. But I am so bored at home.. I have painted everything I own and told the old lady I was ripping out the zero-scaping and planting carpet grass..

But I have since rethunk that..

It's less than twenty four hours before we can go fishing, and I am pumped... Kinda like a kid with a tux, a prom date, a six pack of Heineken and a couple of Trojans..

There have been a few folks fishing this week, that have launched at several locations, including driving across the dam and launching in the Salanaias.

And as the state park opens tomorrow, maybe the county of Zapata will follow suit with opening ramps here to the north..

But it's a fifty-fifty to me.. Remember your safe distancing rules and wear your Buff when in crowds..

Reports have been good.. From those that have braved it..

The flipping bite in trees from two to five feet has really come around I hear.. And cranking rocks like the dam and long points is still good.

Also a C-rig should be in your boat in the AM..

And I'll tell you what else is going to be in the boat..

ME!

See you on the water!

April 17, 2020: As we raced past the Ides with no open boat ramps, we are still working on getting some boat ramps, any boat ramp open.. And I hope to have news for you soon..

I have had to take a different tact.. Will tell you the details later..

The other day when I wrote I was a little pissed and inspired and may have gone off like a half cocked 1911..

So today's theme song is by Tom Petty.. "Don't do Me Like That."

Of course I am talking about the county.. I feel like a jilted girlfriend.. One with special skills but not that good to look at and maybe you don't want to be seen in public with..

But you know I am still staring at you from over by the popcorn stand..

The other day I focused on a lot of the bad.. But in hindsight I need to remember all the good stuff I was/am involved in; stuff that was good for the county, the town, and ultimately good for me and Falcon Lake Tackle..

The first few years we owned the store, we put on the Bass Blast! tournament every spring.. About this time of year as a matter of fact.. Business was booming.. Everybody wanted to come to Falcon, and everybody wanted to fish a tournament..

We were making money and we gave a little back feeding everyone some of the best brisket on the planet, (No bragg.. Just fact..) and giving a door prize to everyone that fished. Some bettern others of course.. And we paid back cash money 100% of the entry's..

And we had a hootin and hollerin good time, while bringing hundreds of folks to Zapata to fish and spend money..

 

We helped organize several Kid Fish Saturdays with great help from several oilfield company's. And several individuals put in a lot more work than me.. But every child kept their rod and reel and we gave away everything from bikes to footballs and hoola-hoops..

Natural gas was selling from 10-14 dollars a CMC back then, and raising money was easy..

It was a melee..

Now a days the C of C puts on the Kidfish event with the help of PAW and the county picks up the tab for the rest.

We donate terminal tackle and bait, but don't get hands on involved given my tenuous relationship with the C of C..

I have been a board member of the Zapata County Convention And Visitors Bureau for years..

And during that time I have secured funding for, and brought the San Antonio Metropolitan League of Bass Clubs here for their annual tournament on several occasions.

Usually a couple of hundred folks involved in a two dayer.. Plus all the clubs move their monthly tournament here the month before to prefish.

Big Mahoney..

I have negotiated and landed at least three TABC state tournaments here at Falcon.. As a mater of fact we have one on the books for this October. Probably 250 fishermen and staff involved in that one.. Lots of these guys stay all week..

Bigger Mahoney..

Recently, with the obvious lack of negotiating skills demonstrated by the C of C, I have taken over negotiations with Bass Champs, who this year, for the first time in a few, scheduled Falcon twice on their trail.

Mo Big Mahoney..

I talk up Falcon all the time and if I ain't Falcon's biggest cheerleader then I don't know who is..

I looked pretty good in them pleated skirts.. But I did destroy them pictures..

Mo Mahoney..

I have been highly involved in the API tourneys over the years. And I have worn a lot of hats.. I have been the weighmaster on many occasions and do fish care, and have even taken on the auctioneers role a time or two..

I can't tell you how many weighins I have done fish care at..

We have been involved in a fund raising tournament for the South Texas Food Bank.

We have held countless tourney registrations here at the shop, and have provided food and drink on more than a few occasions.

I don't have enough fingers and toes to count the times we have gone out on the water and rescued people who were broke down, and/or ignored by the Game Wardens and Border Patrol..

I could tell you some stories..

In the last few years I have gotten involved with the Catch A Special Thrill (CAST) organization. Several guides and I donate a day of fishing with auction money going directly to fund a day of fishing for special needs kids at Lake Calaveras in San Antonio.

And a shout out to all the guides that have contributed.. You know who you are and we thank you. And you will receive a special mention from me when I get through grousing here..

I can't tell you how many people and kids we have taught how to tie knots, set up a Texas rig, or C-rig here in the store..

And there is nothing I enjoy more. That's building a client base.. And throwing in a bag of old worms with dust on em don't hurt either..

I fuckin' love my job..

And over the years we have met some of the nicest people that have ever walked the earth. From every state in the union and and probably every continent on the globe.

And the pleasure has been all ours. And it is because of you that we get to do what we do.. We have had real jobs..

I like this one better..

If I seem a little upset the last couple of posts, it is certainly not with any of you guys..

It's with the management of Zapata County..

Why you wanna do me like that?

 

 

When I think about all the things I have seen down here in Zapata in my lifetime, I am reminded of the Grateful Dead song, 'What a Long Strange Trip It's Been'.

The first time I saw Falcon was 1961. I didn't drive here, but my Daddy did in a 1956 Chevy. 265 V-8 with overdrive.. But it pulled that 14' Lonestar.

That was 59 years ago.. But I got a memory like a fuckin' elephant..

We came when we could, and when I was old enough and financially able the first thing I bought was a POS boat and a POS motor but I made it work.. And I made it work on Falcon and the river above San Ygnacio.

I was making my living in San Antonio, but there was never a day gone by that I did not think about being on Falcon.

And I was here all I could and more than I could afford. But I did it cause I loved it. And luckily my boats got a little more modern as my credit grew..

In 1989 me and some buddies bought a lot just outside of Lakefront Lodge and moved a deer lease cabin there from the La Mesa over on Mines road north west of Laredo. And we built on a 20x24 addition with a breezeway and covered parking.. While we should have been fishing.

My kids grew up here on long weekends and holidays and ran amuck in the park.. It was awesome..

It was paradise with no limits and an escape from the 6 to 6 world I lived in five or six days a week.

In 2005 my brother and I got out of the deal at Lakefront, and bought a house on Yucca St, two blocks behind the store.

It was awesome and we owned it until recently.

Larry and Barbara Bridgeman opened Falcon Lake Tackle about 2000.. And I don't remember exactly when I met them, but I had to be one of their first customers.. Many of the fixtures we have in the store came from the old Redwood Lodge, where Lakeview and Aqua Bar stand today.

I got to know the Bridgeman's really well, and I started working in the store on weekends when there was a big tournament in town. Of course back then I'd be about half liquored up and would work the floor and have a blast..

Larry would always say, "James, you're a natural.. I'm drawing up the papers.."

Funny how things work out..

Larry passed away in 2007, and before did, he had become a great defender of Falcon Lake, and even started the Save Falcon Lake Association.

And had some successes with it and was instrumental in getting TPWD's attention as far as stocking Falcon went, and he was always at battle with the IWBC when it came to water issues, and was not afraid to point out the spineless US government in not enforcing the water treaty with Mexico.

I took over the website here at FLT soon after the passing of Larry. And although I knew nothing of running a website, and some say I still don't, I wasn't short on opinion or the will to share it..

I got a lot of comments early on, from non-fans.. And I always told them the same thing.. "Listen.. I am not throwing my paper in your yard.. If you don't like it, don't fuckin read it.."

It was going well.

On March 17th, 2008, my brother and I owned the tackle store.. Much to our wives disbelief..

The Stren series had finished up a national tournament in January, and the results shocked the world. I don't remember the weights. But they were Falcon Old School Impressive.

We owned the store a few months later, when the Elites came here and broke more records than the Beatles..

We got a crash course in Retail.. And after the news got out about Falcon it was too late for Katie to bar the door.

The first shit I got into around here, not counting the fucked up and evidently corrupt Chamber of Commerce of the time, (more on the current one later) was when I made a big stink about the very large numbers of big fish that were killed by the Elite tournament.

It was the first time I got called a liar and drug thru the mud by folks on the internet that knew Jack Shit about what had gone on down here.. Seems that BASS had somehow forgotten to show the dead fish on TV or even mention the dead fish.

I still got the pics.. Just like the old sniper in Shooter that still has the shovel..

The facts came out a little later and I told all them know it all motherfuckers on the internet to suck it..

But a good lesson learned.

At that point I promised to always tell you the truth. If fishing was good, I'd tell you it was good. If it sucked, I'd tell you it sucked..

And there were several occasions when I told you to quit your job and get your ass down here..

I'd almost tell you that now, but fuck, most of us don't have a job, and we can't get on the lake.. (more on that soon)

We've had a few other problems around here to deal with as well..

We had record flooding in 2010.. Which shut down the lake for a couple of weeks because the Coast Guard of all people said that the results from it would not have a significant impact on local businesses.. Well I guess at least it had insignificant impact on their paychecks..

Still got the letter from the Admiral.. Just like those pics and that shovel..

Right in there came the saga of the Hartleys.. And to this day Falcon is still considered a war zone by many across the country..

And I have had way too many conversations about that subject..

Then we had the period of the "Pirates" on Falcon.

What a fun time that was.

I have also had plenty of conversations with the IWBC.

Many battles over the old bridge in the Veleno, and trying to keep it marked.. Most of the time I had to do it myself with my own makeshift materials. (Thanks to those many of you who have helped me over the years)

We fought illegal netting for years till PAW decided that we weren't exaggerating about how bad it was. And now we have a full contingent of wardens here, although they would rather chase bad guys on the road than on the lake.

We fought with PAW about the alligator gar numbers in this lake. And after five years of study they agreed we have a crazy number of them. And raised our daily limit to five per day per angler here on Falcon.. And their numbers are still growing.. These gar ain't like your gar.. All those samplings and testing's were done here at FLT.

We have fought and cursed fishermen who come here and fillet giant bass like crappie..

We worked with TPWD to design and test the best fish care oxygen system in the world to help protect the giant sacks of tournament fish caught here on Falcon

We saw the construction of the new County Park and pavilion.

And we fought with TX Dot over a massive fish kill that occurred while the new bridge over the Veleno was being constructed. Still got the pics..

And got their contractor to do improvements at the new pavilion to allow for drive thru weigh ins. In exchange for a hold-harmless clause regarding the fish kill.

Somewhere in there I had a five year running battle with TPWD about the Sharelunker Program. Seems I liked facts and they liked hype and publicity..

BTW.. It still has not made any bigger fish in Texas..

Somewhere in there I was appointed to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Freshwater Fisheries Advisory Committee. (Still got the letter from Peter Holt.)

After two years of running all over the state and finding out that advising was the last thing I was doing, I resigned.

I guess it looks good on your resume..

Until very lately most of my fight has been regarding Cormorants.. Talk about a virus.. These son of a bitches kill the host from the inside out and leave you with a shell of what you once were..

But I guess there is always something more important..

Today our county commissioners court decided that it is just too dangerous for you to launch your boat and go fishing.

While allowing ten things I can think of that are ten times more likey to get someone to pass on the Chinese virus.

Follow the money..

Of all the things I have had to fight for, and defend Zapata and Falcon about, this one hurts the most..

And I am sure I have left out a bunch..

I never dreamed that we would become our own worst enemies..

It's gonna make me rethink a few things..

I am sure we will get past this.. And one day it will all be a bad memory. And this was not the report that I was hoping to write today.

I will keep you updated.. When I know something, you will..

 

April 14, 2020: Well.. Over the years I have seen some bullshit.. But I probably just saw the biggest pile I have seen..

The Zapata Commissioners Court decided that people fishing from boats were a danger to society, and that all Zapata county boat ramps, public and private, will remain closed at least for another week, and maybe thru the end of the month.. And then who knows when..

Seems they don't want people coming to town. Staying in our motels, eating at our restaurants, (take out only) buying our products and using our services.

Oh except if you are working on the windmills.. We currently have a couple of hundred windmill workers staying at our motels and RV parks, eating our restaurant food, going to grocery stores, gas stations, taco houses... Yada, Yada..

But I guess those folks are immune to the Woohan.. And from spreading it..

And they have trucks by the hundreds coming and going out of our county all day long, six or seven days a week.

Seems a little hypocritical don't you think?

We just need to hunker down and get past this and suck it up and tighten our belts and...

But don't worry I am sure they are still getting their checks each month.. So you don't have to worry about the ruling class going hungry..

Do I sound a little pissed off? Yeah.. Hell Yeah..

And I am sure it is going to get worse..

Not sure what the State Park is planning.. But I will let you know when I hear anything about anything.

But right now I am too pissed off to write.. I'm sure I will give you an update soon..

Just FYI..

April 8, 2020: It's been an interesting couple of days down here. Days mixed with good news and bad.

The good news is that the fish have gone crazy, and a LOT of fish have been caught. The fish have finally gone to the woods in a lot of places, and flipping and spinner baiting them has been easy.

You can still crank em and Carolina rig em as well, on most any rocky area.. From shallow to deep..

It has been good/awesome..

But here is the bad news..

In a move that defies any logic, at least to me, and I make Mr. Spock look like a third grader; Our county fathers have decided to close all boat ramps in Zapata County, public and private..

I probably don't have to tell you what my opinion of this is..

But you know I am gonna..

It's Bullshit..

Here's a copy of a letter to the editor that will appear in tomorrows paper..

An Open Letter To The County Judge and Commissioners

Sirs:

This week in emergency session, you, the court, decided to close access to the lake via all public and private boat ramps.

Besides being unconstitutional, you have overreacted in a manner that not only affects businesses, who are already struggling, it also affects the wellbeing of many people, who are practicing proper social distancing, while getting some exercise and and escaping from the prisons of their own homes.

You are denying two of the tenants of the Declaration of Independence by denying the people their right to Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.

 

I can understand the closure of the County Park on Easter weekend, with the history of local celebration of the resurrection of our Savior, Jesus Christ.

I don't like it.. But I understand it..

Many people and families gather together there in large groups in celebrations that are anticipated for months.

And right now we all understand the need for separation of peoples, as hard as it is on families and friends.

We'll get past it.

But there is no way that familial members, fishing together, or alone, from a boat, out in our wonderful 40,000 acre playground, pose any threat to the general wellbeing of our community.

If you must, close the park and all other boat ramps to gatherings. But allow the launch and retrieval of watercraft, where no rules of safe distancing will be violated.

A little common sense here will go a long way and will help with the drudgery of waiting out this time in purgatory till this dark period in time passes.

I implore you to do the right thing, and give us our access back to the park and the lake WE own.

Respectfully,

James Bendele

 

I'll be in commissioners court on next Tuesday, saying my piece..

And hopefully you won't have to come bail me out of jail.

If you would like to express your opinion to the county, in favor of opening or closing the ramps, the number to call is 956-765-9920.

I'll keep you posted.

I am sure by now you know that the state has closed the state park.. While the national park on Amistad remains open.

Go figure..

April 6, 2020: This morning the Zapata County Commissioners court decided to close the Zapata County Park, including the boat ramp.

Which to me is stupid.. Or at least that is the word I will use.. I can think of a few others. Go figure.. I understand the desire to keep the general public from gathering..

But what better way to isolate yourself than in a boat out on the lake..

Easter is is a big time here in Zapata.. And I understand the Pachangas that go on down at the County Park get big and a lot of folks are in the same area.. And I can understand them trying to stop that.

I told then to rope off the area but leave the ramp alone.. But they say they don't have the resources to keep the people out.. So they'll lock the gate..

But all those people that would gather at the county park will still gather somewhere else..

I am currently not sure about the ramps at Tiger Island and at Beacon or the State Park for that matter. At 9:00 this am I could contact no one at the state park, and their website still says they are open..

Will advise when anything changes..

April 4, 2020: I'd sure like to have a time machine.. That could jump the planet to about four months from now..

Of course if I didn't like what I saw, I'd want to come back..

Seems we're stuck in a temporal time loop.. Every day seems the same.. Waiting for some good news..

Damn.. I just read that and it sounds really depressing.. Because it it..

All we hear about is doom and gloom.. If that is all we listen to.. People preaching doom and gloom.

I've pretty much quit it.. Information overload.. And most of it is pure speculation anyway..

And if you dwell on the doom and gloom, guess what you are going to get..

Doomier and gloomier..

 

I know that things pretty much suck for a lot of folks.. Especially if you are stuck in a big metropolitan area and there are not a lot of places to escape to.. Guess it is a good time to paint the house and trim the trees..

Anything to keep your sanity..

Hang in there folks. One day this will all be a bad memory.. And hopefully a learning experience for all..

 

If you're one of the lucky ones, you might be able to slip off to the lake or river in your part of the world.. And wet a line..

Down here, in the middle of BFE, things are pretty quiet as well.. But folks are still taking the kids to the lake for some time out of the house..

Locally, the county has decreed that no gatherings may occur at the lake, except for familial units.. People living under the same roof basically.

You have probably heard me talk about it in the past. Easter weekend is the biggest throwdown of the year in Zapata.

Folks have their area at the lake staked out for a week in anticipation of big family and friend gatherings.

Not this year..

And this year will be the first in many that we have not all gathered at the ranch to celebrate the Risen Christ..

Seems like a strange dream..

 

Zapata county as its first confirmed case of the Woohan virus.. I would think there are more, but who really knows without testing every soul in the county. Just FYI..

 

Meanwhile.. The fishing is about as good as it has been in months.. Maybe years.. The years might be a stretch, but it has been really good.

There are few folks fishing, but the ones that are have mostly been spanking them.. Especially on the south end of the lake. Nothing has changed.. Mostly on rock.. But some flipping fish have also appeared on creek channels in the hardwoods..

Jim Klick caught this monster on Tuesday.. 12.31 pounds..

I was going today, but believe it or not, it is raining.. We have had a half inch overnight.. More than we have had in a single event since I can't remember when.. With the possibility for more..

The state park ramp is about out of service as of today.. People still used it yesterday, but I hear it was minimal.. Don't know what will happen with local rainfall or releases if the valley gets wet.. But it does not look like a washout just yet.

I'll keep you posted on local events and any news that might make a shit.. But the lake is still available to fishermen and what better way is there to pass the time than by fishing out in the middle of nowhere..

That's my kind of quarantine..

Give us a call if you have any questions concerning Zapata and Falcon Lake.

And we'll see you when we can..

April 2, 2020: It's the day after April fools day.. And I didn't hear one April fools day joke that was was worth repeating..

I guess nobody is in the mood for a bunch of silliness with all the Corona/Woohan/Chinese virus bullshit going on..

Every year I keep thinking this is the year I'm gonna do it..

I'm gonna write a official looking press release and make it look like it came from PAW..

To the effect that PAW, in its continuing efforts to keep the Alligator gar species thriving in Texas, will be transplanting 154 Mature Alligator Gar, varying in size from four feet to six feet in length, from Falcon International Reservoir, to Lake Fork.

Alligator gar, (Atractosteus spatula) have been widely extirpated from many of its once native northern waters, and we feel that many more people would be able to pursue and enjoy the benefits of these fish being added to the bountiful waters of Lake Fork.

And then sit back and watch the heads explode..

Shit I think it would be funny anyway.. But the folks at PAW would probably get all pissed..

But as I recall, they have been pissed at me before..

Hell. Then we could trap about 10,000 cormorants.. Clip their wings so they couldn't fly for a year or so, and take them up to Fork also.. They could still dive and swim just fine..

So people would not have to drive all the way down here to stare at these magnificent birds thru their binoculars..

Think what a boon it would be for the NE Texas economy..

Maybe next year..

Meanwhile.. Back at the ranch..

Fishing remains very good down here.. Although I read in the TPWD report that the bass fishing is good around flooded vegetation.. That's a good one.. There ain't any..

But the bass are very active on rocks.. Those you see and them you don't.. Lots of three pound meanies..

And a few like this 10.21 Larry Ward caught..

Got a tail like a push broom..

I hear that crappie are increasing to fair.. Shit we been murdering them big motherfuckers.. So if it is getting better, I need to get my ass out there..

They got close on the Catfish thing.. They say good.. I say great.. Especially when the river was running.. Big MO-FO's and lots of em.. Jug liners have been wearing them out.. As have the rod and reelers..

 

Speaking of the river running.. It ain't.. Releases from Amistad have been cut to about 2K CFS.. And we're still releasing about 9000 CFS..

Dropping like the stock market.

Good reports are still coming from the rip-rap on the dam.. Best quality of fish coming from there. Still.

It can be a little tough practicing your social distancing along those rocks.. Popular area.. For good reason..

Your favorite bait will catch them.. An underspin with a little swimbait. A squarebill in shad pattern.. A Carolina rig.. Deeper divers on the mid depth rocks.. Spinnerbaits..

In general the fish are biting.. You might find something that works better one day than the next.. But like usual it is almost always about being around feeding fish.

And after basically a two month hiatus, the fish have the feedbag on..

 

I really wish Bass Champs would have been able to come on their scheduled date. I think you'd have seen a shitload of limits, and some very decent weights in the top ten..

Hopefully in a few weeks we will see things start returning to normal.. And maybe we can get a few tournaments in before it is all over.

If and when we do have some tournies back here at Falcon, I think it would be prudent to consider a three fish limit if we are fishing in 80 plus degree water..

Food for thought..

 

Last night I was watching the news on FOX.. Whooda guessed it. I like to check in for an hour or so a day.. That's all you need.. Trust me..

Anyway she had a doctor on there.. Stephen Smith. He was talking about the effectiveness of hydroxychloroquine against the Woohan virus.. And in the patients he has treated with it, it has had tremendous results.

And he actually said that he believes that this is the beginning of the end of the pandemic..

Much has been made of this malaria drug as of late, including statements by the President. Haven't heard a bad thing about it..What I want to know is why in the fuck isn't every patient with positive testing for the virus being treated with it?

Supposedly it is cheap and plentiful and has a long history of being safe..

Maybe that is the problem. It is cheap and plentiful and there is no money to be made by Big Pharma..

Naw.. No way they'd put dollars ahead of public safety..

In any case.. Pull the rag out of your asses and start using this stuff on a giant sample of people.. And do it now..

Evidently we have nothing to loose.. And neither do those that are infected..

I should rephrase that. Yes.. Many people have everything to loose..

 

The American People are as resilient a race (Yes we are all one) as exists on the planet.

But even the most hardened of us desperately want to see a bit of light at the end of the tunnel.

For a man without hope is certainly in dire straights.

Nerves are frayed and people are living in fear of the unknown..

And to those of you who are, let me suggest that you focus on the known.

There is not a food shortage.. Or a toilet paper shortage. The electricity is not going off..

Communication with family and landlords and creditors is a must.

And all of them are going to need you when this shit is over..

I know many of you are going a bit stir crazy.. But hang in there.. Better days are coming soon..

And you'll want to be around to enjoy them, I promise..

Keep the Faith America..

You may or may not believe in God.. But HE Believes In You..

March 31, 2020: Well the end of the month is here, and I will have to say that it ended unlike any other March I have spent in Zapata.. Or anywhere else for that matter..

The locals are getting a bit restless, and I am sure that is true no matter what town you live in. I'm just glad that we have a lake and a lot of open area to enjoy while we wait out this Woohan bullshit..

We are still open, and will remain so for the foreseeable future, as we have been designated an essential business for the preservation of personal sanity in a non forward area.

We have sold every cast net, Zebco 33 combo, baitcast combo, pyramid weight, and catfish hook we had in stock..

Well not really. But we have sold a shit load of em..

Of course the local kids are all out of school, and a lot of folks have taken the kids to the lake as a way to break up the day.

We have sold a shit ton of ammo and a few firearms, and I hear that more FBI background checks were done in the last few weeks than in any similar period in history..

It appears that Woohan is better at selling guns than even Obamma..

 

If you are down here fishing, you are probably dealing with this shit as good as anyone can.

 

So about the fishing.. I have fished the last two days, both as the guest of others, and we caught a bunch of fish. But no whoppers.

Neither day did I make a cast directed at a tree.. But I'm getting used to it. And a Carolina rig is becoming my new best friend. (Really I despise the son of a bitch but it sure is catching fish)

Catching fish is all about being around rock, whether it is near the shore, or out in the middle of the lake. Rock ledges, rock flats, rock points.. I really like feeling my sinker going clank, clank, clank on the gravel.. Cause I know I'm about to get bit..

Now don't get me wrong.. It ain't the only way to catch a fish.

A crankbait is still catching a lot of fish as well.. As is a spinnerbait.

I think mostly it is just that the fish are in an eating mood.. And they are fat and sassy.. And mean..

Water temps yesterday were about 76°. We have had a few undulations from there.. And been around eighty a few days.. But that's about the norm..

We are hemmoraging water right now, as Amistad has greatly reduced the amount of water being released. And we are loosing about two inches a day.. Maybe more as the river flattens out..

State park concrete ramp still working as of now, but for how long I don't know.. But you will always be able to launch down on the point.

County ramp here in Zapata is fine.. No probs.. It is a little like Twiggy though.. Pretty flat..

The old Veleno Bridge is still about six or eight inches under water.. And definitely in the danger zone.. We are working on getting it marked better.. Stay tuned.. And stay to the west bank going out of the Veleno!

 

I fished with Matt Reed yesterday, and as is often the case when I fish with one of our local guides, we do a lot of looking and poking around. Hell, I am just glad to get outside..

We did not catch a fish over four pounds, but we caught a bunch of three pound meanies..

After fishing with Jay a couple of weeks ago in his new Ranger, and with Matt in a new Nitro, both 21 foot boats, I'll have to admit that the new Mercury 250 four stroke is a beastly motor out of the hole.

Of course I have been running the Yamaha SHO for eight years, and all I can say that it is about time Merc caught up with Yamaha in the torque department..

Totally changed the driving and riding experience in those two boats compared to the Optimax.

There's my motor review for the year.. Although I do miss the smell of two stroke smoke..

But I still have my weed whacker..

 

I know there are a lot of folks working from home, and you are the lucky ones.

I know there are a lot of folks at home and not working at all due to this latest Chinese export.

And I feel for all of you/us. Such a total disruption to your daily life, plus for very many a giant loss of income, and living with the fear of contracting this shit.

As Americans, it is certainly not something we are used to.

Maybe when this shit passes, and it will, we will come away with a more appreciative attitude about where we live, and how we live.

Maybe we will learn to not take everything for granted. That it will always be there.

Maybe we will learn to put some money away for a rainy day.. Cause there is a monsoon a blowing..

Maybe we will learn a little more respect for our fellow man.

Maybe we will learn to be a little more generous in our thoughts and deeds.

And maybe we will learn that God should be our first option, not our last one..

 

Like all things in life, this is a numbers game.. And I wish you and yours the best as we get through this tough time. But there is no doubt that all of us will be touched by this in some way before it is over..

Hang tough, because that is what Americans do.. And to our international friends, and we have met many of you, yall hang in there as well.

And we hope to see all of you as soon as we are able.

If you need to talk to us or have questions about anything give us a call or e-mail me at James@falconlaketackle.com

I'm bored to death as well, so send me an e-mail to keep us both awake..

Come fishing if you can.. It's good.. And Zapata is a good place to hide and stay to yourself.

See you soon I hope..

March 26, 2020:

If you're feeling a little stir crazy, this might be a good time to escape the bonds of matrimony and and get your ass down here before the world comes to an end..

Fishing is good, and fishing is good therapy..

And I heard that two stroke smoke will kill the virus.. Or at least it might..

Breathe deep, the gathering gloom, start your outboard in an enclosed room..

People are certainly crazy, and I ain't seen this much commotion since Gilligan filleted Flipper..

 

Ramps at both ends of the lake are still open, with no plans to close either I hear. If you have been to Zapata, you know there ain't too much to do here but work and fish.. And a lot of folks aren't working, so fishing has become a way to kill a few hours for the locals.

And seriously, and I am rarely serious, what is a better way to get away from people than to get out on a boat in the middle of nowhere and away from the crowds and go fishing.

Might help you keep your sanity..

 

I rarely write anything without bitching about something so I want to interject a complaint about a fisherman..

Some low bred son of a bitch threw out twenty catfish carcases right on the boat ramp here at the county ramp.

What the fuck..

There are dumpsters all over the place. There are 5000 acres of brush and creek beds around the boat ramp.. What kind of asshole does shit like that..

I have no idea who did it, but that is total bullshit. We talk about respect for others.. That is about the most inconsiderate crap anybody could do to other fishermen.

 

I hear rumors that the park service at Amistad is going to close the lake. That's more bullshit.. I can understand postponing tournaments and gatherings. But telling individuals they can't go fishing is beyond the pale..

Like I said before, what's a better way to be sequestered..

The people making these decisions are Covidiots.. And farther crippling the livelihoods of those that support their local economies..

You splain it to me Lucy..

 

All I can say to you is that we are still here. We are taking common sense precautions with those we see and serve.

And we've got plenty of room for you if you need to get away..

Keep the faith folks. We'll get through this mess and get the wheels back on her soon..

Holler at us if we can answer any questions about local conditions.

 

Every species we have are biting good, and even the flipping bite has re-appeared.. And we'll be glad to point you in the right direction..

Hope to see you before too long..

March 24, 2020: It has been a busy week around here, with a lot of folks doing what they can to keep from going crazy. This living at home with Mama and the kids is a little tougher that it sounds..

There are a few frayed nerves around I am sure.. But in the big picture, it is an opportunity for a little family bonding.. Or Not..

We have had some fishermen of both sexes come down, either to just get away, or to do some social distancing of the finest kind.

And the fish have not disappointed either..

Catches of good numbers of fish have been reported every day. A few whoppers have been caught, but it appears that the two to five pound fish have been most active.

Crankbaits and spinnerbaits on rock have been very good. The dam continues to produce fish, from one end to the other. Points, especially with a ledge on one side have been particularly good.

Rocks.. Rocks with drops.. Yeah, that's the ticket.

I also talked to a fellow yesterday that caught some fish flipping trees. In five foot of water.. Not Six.. Not four.. Said they were really particular about the depth..

We are seeing more and more spawned out fish, and it is about time. But there are still some fish with a gut full of eggs that have not dommminoed just yet.. Ain't sure how long they can wait..

Main lake and secondary points are seeing a ton of shad still up spawning on the rocks. Incredible numbers.. So thick you can catch a bucketful with a crankbait. Well.. If you're there a while.. But I mean there is a shitload of em..

And where the bait is, the bass are.. And the white bass.. And the crappie..

The white bass can be a nuisance in some places, and you can catch one every cast. And if you are looking for some meat for the freezer these fish are ready to fill the void.

The crappie are back in the brushpiles, but you can still catch them on scattered hardwoods as well.

Overall, the fishing here is good for all species, including catfish. We had some buddy's down last weekend and they whacked em on jug lines. But the rod and reel fishermen are doing really good as well..

Bait is easy to catch, and a big shad will get you bit by something.. No telling what.. You better keep an eye on that rod..

We have no problems here with the ramps at either end of the lake. We are holding pretty steady currently, as the imput and output are similar. We'll see how that holds up..

We had the biggest rain we have had in months last weekend. .4 Yep 4/10 and it was glorious..

 

We have sold a ton of ammunition lately.. Seems that folks are a little freaked out.. Our town is about wiped out of toilet paper (that's funny... Wiped out..) and ammunition..

So I guess if you can shoot and shit you are good to go..

Our store shelves are doing pretty good at keeping up with the hoarders.. But if you run out of toilet paper, remember that there is finally a good use for most of the newspapers across the country.. There's mostly shit in them, so it will be fine to put some shit on them..

But what someone is going to do with 12 dozen eggs I don't know.

If it was Halloween back in the 70's I could understand..

We don't have a supply problem.. We have an idiot problem.

Which is being fueled by the liberal fradie cats and a few generations of pussies that have never had to deal with any kind of adversity on their own.

 

In any case we have plenty of room for you to isolate yourselves down here in Zapata. The fishing is good and you can eat what you catch and not even have to go to the store..

I'll report before too long on what is happening.. But Falcon Lake is open for business, and so are we..

Come see us.. Cause, what else you gonna do?

March 17, 2020: When I moved to Zapata about twelve years ago, I remember writing about a lot of hysteria going on here in Zapata county. And people were flocking to Zapata by the truckloads, in spite of near four dollar a gallon gas..

Why? Cause there was a ten pounder in every inundated tree..

Today there is hysteria nationwide, but not so much here in Zapata.. And gas is selling as low as a buck fifty in some places..

Which certainly does not make for a good Texas economy.. Oil and its offshoots are top dog in the Lone Star state.

Times change, and rather quickly it seems.. The last ten years are a blur.. And I hope the hard time we are all going thru right now will just be a bad memory in a month or two..

If I wasn't an optimist, I'd have checked out long ago..

Here in Zapata, things are not as wild as I hear tell in other parts of the country and state. We are not out of toilet paper, water, soaps and cleaners, and we are not out of common sense either.. (edit: It could be starting)

There are certainly a few folks in town that have bought up a years supply of the above.. But it is a long way from crazy.

And the re-supply chain seems to be holding up pretty good.

The re-supply chain is also holding up pretty good in the tackle business. And my suppliers tell me there are not much changes as of yet in their chain of merchandise from manufacturers.

And I just ordered a shit load of stuff in preparation for the Bass Champs tournament scheduled for next weekend..

Which is no longer scheduled for next weekend, as you probably know by now.

Bass Champs has re-scheduled their Falcon number two tournament for May 30, which is a good ways off. And by then this Wuhan virus shit will hopefully be a bad memory.

And it is a damn shame, because the fishing here on Falcon has been better than it has been all year. And I was looking for some big sacks to make it to the scales..

But hell if you ain't skeered and you already got a kitchen pass for that weakened, get your ass down here.. We ain't Fork.. We don't fish within six feet each other so you should be good to go..

And if you call in your order, we will just step out the door and throw it at you from a distance..

I had a mean slider in High school. But my accuracy was less than Smoltz like.. And I was known to crack a few ribs..

But I think I can still land em in your boat..

As of today, I have not heard of any cases of Corona in Zapata. Except for the local retailers, of course.. They also have them in six and twelve packs..

Here in Zapata we are taking a few other steps to prevent the transfer of the virus due to face to face contact.. No kissing during sex, and for the next thirty days it will be doggie style only...

 

There have been a lot of fish caught lately.. And on a lot of different baits.. Of course all this is due to the fact that the fish have in general gotten a lot more active.

Water temps are in the low to middle seventies, and I mean that the shad spawn is ON and they are all over the bank. The last three times I fished I have caught a lot of shad on crankbaits.. A lot.. And often you can feel your bait bouncing off of them on the retrieve..

And the fish ain't far from the food supply. From the Salanaias to the Veleno, they are thick.

The locals are throwing a cast net twice and catching all the bait they need.. Three weeks ago you would wear out a good set of arms to catch a dozen..

We have caught nearly a foot and a half of water, but like I said, I don't think this water will take up permanent residence here.

The state park ramp is working fine back on the concrete. It isn't overly deep there at the end of the ramp.. But it is certainly deep enough to launch whatever boat you have. You might keep your motor trimmed up to keep your water intake a bit farther from the silt..

The old Veleno bridge is back under water, but CERTAINLY NOT deep enough to drive over. Stay to the west exiting the home creek.

The river is dirty down to at least marker nine, and south of that it starts to clear up.. Pierce's south looks awesome.. Falcon Green..

Carolina rigs are still catching a lot of fish. Smaller baits like a U-vibe worm or a super fluke are doing well.. Tie you up about a twenty inch leader with a 3/4 oz tungsten weight and drag it around like a pull toy..

Pay attention to your line and if you can't find your bait you better be jerking.. Cause something done got ahold of you..

Crankbaits from square bills to DD-22's are catching a lot of fish.. And quality fish are being caught on it as well..

And a bait that has really come on strong is the spinnerbait.. We have a great selection of the Jo-Baby's in stock. And they are catching fish..

Here's a few recent fish..

Carl Vance caught this DD..

Young Luke Standerfer caught this new PB at about 8.5..

Mark caught this 11.5 and a 7 off the rocks..

Mrs. Montz caught this DD yesterday..

I fished with Jay on Sunday in his new boat, on a virgin ride.. Being I am experienced with virgins.. (It's a Catholic thing.)

And I busted that hymen with the first fish in the new boat.. I didn't want to.. But I couldn't help myself.. But don't worry.. Doggy style rule was in effect..

But what amazed me is that we actually caught four or five fish flipping trees.. I remember why I like it so much.

A six inch senko was the best bait in the trees.. Although I did catch a nice one on a POM..

We also cranked the Mexican Rip-Rap and Jay caught a rod and reel.. A Garcia rod with a Shimano reel on it.. If you can answer a few questions you can pick it up here at the shop..

Overall I am going to give the fishing a 7.5. Which is way up from anything we have had lately..

 

This Woohan Chinese shit that is going around certainly has a lot of folks on edge.. I can't say I don't pay any attention to it.. But I am certainly not letting it consume my life. But I sure have a song in my head by The Knack.. I have written several new stanzas of it as well. But when I went on You Tube a lot of pro's had already beaten me to the punch..

There's a way to waste a hour or two..

Here at FLT we have our own Woohan Wipeout Officer.. TCB, baby..

This is the only case of Corona Virus I have seen caught in Zapata so far..

You know that I have been talking for years about the Chinese. Not so much the people in general, but their totalitarian government and their lack of respect for the planet and their own people.

And I can't understand why we keep buying their lead infested shit anyway.. Or maybe I can.. Cause we want cheap shit..

Might be time to rethink that..

These Son of a Bitches are communists after all.. But then again I think half of our country is leaning that way.. Maybe this will open some of them stupid fuckers minds.. But I doubt it..

But communism is what you get when you are willing to turn your ass up.. And you ain't going to be the one who decides where you go and what you do.. You'll be taken care of by the government. Yeah.. Just like in China..

 

Well you folks might want to get down here and do some fishing before the end of the world. And maybe you can pick up some toilet paper while you are here.. I got reprimanded yesterday for leaving an extra roll out in the executive shitter..

But I will admit.. When you need it, you need it.. Jeez I hope a national case of the scowers (sp) don't set in.. Or the shit is really going to hit the fan..

So take care of yourself, take reasonable precautions, and we'll get by fine..

I've got a big pot of boiling water out in the shop.. And I'm fixin to go dunk Chicken Little in it..

See you on the water!

P.S. Just heard that Zapata is closing restaurants dining rooms.. To go food only for two weeks..

Here we go!

Editorial note: I don't mean to make too light of the current situation. But I think a little humor is a necessity in all things.. So I am here for a little comic relief. Be smart.. Take care of yourself.. And leave a roll for the next guy..

March 10, 2020: We're five days away from the Ides, and the fish have finally decided to bite a little.. Or in some cases, a lot.. Fishing has been good, especially for those in the know.

A few giant fish have been caught, but a lot of three to eight pound fish have have been brought to the boat as of late.

For those of us who want to catch the fish in the trees.. Well it still ain't happening.. At least not a lot..

Best numbers have been on rock.. And some of the best numbers for size have been right on the dam. Fishing the rip-rap from one end to the other has produced some really nice fish.. Like this 12.8 that David Williams caught..

And his Buddy Michael caught a good one there as well.. But they caught a lot of really good fish off the dam.. And that is all they fished for a week..

And like always, when the dam gets hot, it can be a little busy down there.. It can be downright Forkish..

There are a lot of ways to catch fish off the dam right now.. And if you can think of a way, I am sure it is being used.. But the two best are crankbaits and slow rolled spinnerbaits. That 12.8 shown above was caught on a squarebill two feet off the rock.. Go figure. That means even I have a chance..

But the dam ain't the only place that fish are being caught.. ANY sloping rocky point can produce fish right now. It is the bite we have been waiting for..

Well not the bite I have been waiting for.. I want em in the fuckin' trees... But they ain't there yet..

Me and a lot of my wood loving brethren have beat em to death.. With 10% of the success that rock hounds are having..

I'm starting to like rock..

We also have a population of spotted bass in Falcon.

I fished yesterday with a buddy and we caught em pretty good on long sloping points. Well actually one long sloping point.. We never really moved.

I caught em on a Spro mid running crankbait and on a Carolina rig.. A super fluke worked well on the C-rig.

And the white bass were lousy as well.. Had to wade thru em to catch a bass.. And I don't know how many shad we foul hooked with the crankbaits..

The shad spawn is well underway, and the point we were fishing yesterday was loaded with em. Sometimes you could feel your crankbait bumping them while you reeled..

And my wife says I'm not sensitive..

If your bait suddenly felt like it wadn't running right.. Yep. Big ole shad on one of the hooks.

I did not throw a spinnerbait, but I probably should have. But when something is working I try not to fix it.. But the Blade report has been really good the last week..

I spoke to three or four guides yesterday, and all of them had thirty to fifty fish. And a few folks that have been down here a while have had similar results. And some thirty pound plus stringers have been bragged on reported..

Finally.. Good fishing has landed on us.. Bout freakin time..

Giant crappie are also being caught in good numbers as well. Brushpiles and hardwoods.. True two pounders.. I told you so..

I do believe that we are seeing the start of the spawn.. I guess these fish have finally decided if they are going to get it done they better start.. And why they are not spawning at the bases of the freakin hardwoods I just don't know..

Most of the fish we see are still all bellied up.. But is has started I do believe..

 

It has been a weird weather year, but ain't they all. We have now had consistent water temps and warm nights the last week. And I think that is the key to having active fish. Water temps right under seventy most days.. Your results may vary depending on sun and location and time of day.

We have had one or two day flashes of good fishing.. But this has been the best warm streak we have had this spring.

Another consideration is that the shad have been out deeper for the last two months.. And with the warming water moving them shallow, it certainly hasn't hurt the accessibility of the fish.. They have certainly followed the bait up in a lot of spots.

 

The lake has come up about six inches with the releases from Amistad. But we are passing a lot of water through. And I hear tell that boats are launching back on the concrete at the state park. Guys with metal boats tell me it is no sweat.. And even some bigger boats are doing it as well.

The Veleno bridge peeked out of the water last Saturday, but it has gone back out of sight. If you are coming here and don't know about it.. Please stop in here and ask.. It will fuck up your day.. (Not coming in here.. Hitting the bridge.)

The Water in the river and up here on the north end of the lake is dirty and has some debris in it.. But not bad.. But.. You should be on the lookout for some floaters on the upper end of the lake.

 

Well it is that time of year again.. Time for me to beat on you fishing philanthropists for some help.

If you have been reading this site for long, you know that I get involved with the Catch A Special Thrill organization every spring and try and help raise funds for a special day of fishing for some kids much less fortunate than you and me..

My timing might not be the best given the current stock market turmoil.. But hell I am only talking about a couple of shares of Apple.. At current prices..

Spillage..

In any case, C.A.S.T. will again, this May second and third, host eighty special needs children for a day of fishing at Calaveras Lake in San Antonio. TPWD will be stocking a netted off cove with channel catfish for the participants to angle.

The kids are mentored by many volunteers and taught some basic fishing skills that can stick with them for life.

Each child is provided with a Lew's rod and reel and a Flambeau tackle box which is theirs to take home for use in future adventures with their families.

Lunch and an awards ceremony follow the morning of fishing.

Many of these kids would NEVER get the opportunity without the efforts of all the afore mentioned.

In any case, the following guides, in no particular order, have given a day of their equipment and services, in order to finance this operation for the day.

Instead of the old auction style we have gone to a Buy It Now type of deal so you know when you bid, you will win the trip.

All of these guides will sell for $600 on a first come first served basis.

The guides for this years auction are:

John Adami

Jay Grieshaw

Jimmy Steed

Matt Reed

Jim Edwards

If you are interested in fishing with one of these full time guides, and contribute to a great cause, e-mail Jim Behnken at jimb@castforkids.org

Or if you would like to make a donation of any size, you may also e-mail Jim, or drop off your donation here at FLT.

You can't spend your money any better..

Thanks for your help!

 

On a different note, back to topics of the lake, we have been blessed with the presence of the United States Coast Guard for the last ten days or so..

And many of you, who have been here a while, and have been inspected three or four times, have my sympathy.. I feel your pain.. But hopefully, like a bad cold sore, they will be gone soon and forgotten shortly thereafter.

I understand they are doing training.. I guess they are out of room at the ocean..

TPWD is also in a collective mode, with a lot of officers down here, wasting a lot of money and fuel..

I'm not going into the description of all I have witnessed the last week..

But don't worry.. Evidently both the state government and the Feds have plenty of money to spend.

See: Boondoggle

 

If you are worried about traveling during spring break, due to the Corona virus, let me put your mind at ease.. Zapata is a Corona free zone.

That is, there have been no reported cases of the virus in Zapata, and you know we have a crack team working on it down here..

Or either that team is on crack.. One or the other.. I can't remember which..

But anyway I don't think you'll get infected by some bat eating Chinaman in these parts..

So load up the kids and get your ass down here for some desert bassin..

The fish are biting, and the bugs are not..

See you on the water!

March 4, 2020: The Bi-Polar fishing continues down in our part of the country.. One day it's hot.. The next it is not..

But the more days that we keep the nights out of the forties and fifties, the more consistent it will get.

You noted at the top of this report that I said March.. Winter is supposed to be a bad memory down here by now. But last week we had one night in the middle thirties, and a couple in the forties.

Lets hope that shit is strictly in the rearview..

Looking at national weather maps, I see that winter is far from over in other places.. Yall enjoy..

The last couple of days down here have been awesome.. Highs in the middle eighties, and more cooperative fish.. At On Rocks.. On Rocks..

The flipping bite still sucks.. And I can attribute to that. Yesterday I flipped two hundred trees.. And caught zero fish on them.. After I pulled my head out of my ass and started throwing some crankbaits on points, I caught a few fish..But I want them fish to be on trees.. I want to flip an Ol Monster in there, feel that thump, and proceed to break their fricken neck..

Yeah.. But that shit ain't happening.. I have fished a lot lately.. At least by my wintertime standards.. And on my last three outings I have flipped several different baits at standing timber.. Good stuff.. And have had ZERO bites in the woods..

And I'm not talking about flipping eight or ten trees in a small area.. I have literally beat up more wood than a carpenters helper with a 24 ounce Estwing.. In some of the prettiest water on earth..

I have heard of some C-rig fish.. And they are throwing them on rock for the most part of course.. And it don't hurt if your sinker lands in the water and you bait on the ground.. Just work it out those long points till you figure out what depth they like..

And you can do the same thing with a crankbait.. Like a 5XD or a Rapala DT 10 or 12..

I have always hated throwing a C-Rig.. More moving parts than a shooting gallery.. And usually by the time I have figured out that I have a bite, the fish has done gone Linda Lovelace on it and I have to pry my hook out of her tonsils..

The fish I did catch yesterday were in about three or four feet of water.. And I am hearing a lot of the same..

I am not saying you can't catch fish in ten or deeper, but I do think it is important to work those drops and ledges in areas where you'd expect fish to be moving up.

I am not sure if we are going to see a giant wave of fish storming the shallows this year.. It seems like mini streaks of good fishing interrupted by a few days of suck..

Of course a lot of this has to do with the fronts that seem to reach us every week.. Hopefully that will be over with soon..

But not today. Supposed to gust to 40 this PM.. Oh Boy.. Only those that drove a long way to get here are fishing this morning.. Well.. And maybe a couple of crazyies.

 

The lake is still holding kinda steady, and Amistad is releasing water that has so far offset what we are releasing.. And as I type, they are letting out about 10,000 CFS.. Which is a shitload of water.. Which makes me think that we will soon be doing the same.. But Who the Hell really knows..

We still have plenty of water on the Zapata County ramp, and actually at this particular level the slope is about right. Working fine..

The Old Veleno bridge was visible yesterday, but barely.. Could go either way in the next few days.

State Park ramp is still being used by small boats, but most folks are launching on the bank down the canal a bit... By the big rock.. You can't miss it..

The Mexicans have started to release some water out of Boquilla on the Conchos.. It wadn't a great amount yesterday but they had been releasing zero.. It flows down to Luis Leon, which is turning some water out to the Rio Grande.. Water that will end up in Amistad..

I'll be keeping an eye on it and will advise if I need help moving to higher ground..

 

The local and state elections are finally over.. Maybe we can get rid of some of the sign pollution in our town. They're an eyesore in Zapata and I hope they use as much energy in taking them down as putting them up.

If you're wondering.. Business to continue as usual in Zapata..

And nationally I see we're getting rid of some airwave pollution, as a bunch of democrats that never had a chance in hell of getting elected have dropped out of the race.

Man I could have saved em some money.. And the planet a lot of pollution. All that travel and all that waste.. Just filling up our landfills with Vote For (fill in the blank) signs and sticks and hats and pins and mail outs and holy shit they spend millions on this stuff..

But I guess that is what makes America's economy tick. Stuff.. We need it, we make it, we use it and we throw it away..

I think during the sniff and smell section of the primaries (early on) they ought to do it all on line.. Anybody that gives a shit will do their due diligence.. The rest of the idiots don't need to be voting anyway..

I guess Mike is not going to get it done.. Half a billion later..

Mayor Peter pulled out..

Klobuchar took the gas..

Steyer had a better chance of dating Rosie..

Warren will get out by the end of the day if she has any sense.. So who knows how long she will linger.. If her campaign was on life support, I'd pull the plug.. And I think it is..

I just don't think she's resonating with the voters..

There were some names on the ballot I never heard of.. In both parties..

Looks like it is boiling down to Bernie and Biden.. Also looks like the DNC told the other window dressing candidates to GTFO and who to back.. That could just be a conspiracy theory on my part though..

So they got two old geezers left with a shot at getting the nomination..

One mostly senile guy that is very touchy feeley.. And another old Mad communist..

I just don't think I can break ranks just yet..

 

Well I gotta get back to work.. I have some things to get done.. And we are checking in an order of sails this afternoon..

It's a Blowin! But looks like a good weekend coming up though! See you on the water.. And if you are lookin for me, look in the trees..

I'm gonna make these motherfuckers bite one of these days!

February 26, 2020: Today would be a good day to hole up with a cheap bottle of whiskey and a fifty dollar hooker in shit hole motel.. Too windy for outside activities..

Sounds like a Mickey Spillane movie from the fifties.. So do the prices.. But you could probably find two out of the three here in Zapata.. But I ain't sayin' which two..

 

Yesterday and the day before and the day before were beautiful fishing days on the other hand.. And even I continued my fish catchin streak on Sunday.. Man, I am on fire..

And I only say that because I have been really stinking it up as of late. But I do see fishing improving the last week or so, especially when we get some consecutive warm days.

I also finally saw a picture of a fish that was spawned out.. It was like looking at Rosie after a guttural purge and all you see is a couple of acres of floppy skin.. Ickie...

And while nothing crazy is going on, overall the fishing is improving, as numbers have gotten better, and I hear less and less reports of really crappy numbers.

Crankbaits are still catching more fish than plastics, as the flipping bite is just not happening.. At least by most reports. Including mine.

On Sunday we flipped a hundred trees on the Mexican side across from the Tigers. The water looks fantastic, and the hardwoods are thick and big.. And if there is a better place for spawning fish I haven't seen it.. But we caught zero out of those trees.. We also flipped fifty trees out in front of the Coyotes, in depths from ten to three feet..

No fish on a soft plastic. But I did catch a nice one there on a spinnerbait.

Rockpiles and rocky points produced much better, and that has been reported by most all fishermen. And the rockpiles have produced worm and crankbait fish..

I caught this spotted bass on Sunday.. I think it is half black finned shark..

But most of the fish still look like this.. Bout to bust..

Brett Boice from Joplin, MO..

Those rockpiles also tend to eat your baits, so you will get some knot tying practice in as well. And then again, that's why we are here..

I have been throwing a Rapala crankbait in a shad pattern and have been having decent luck with it. And when fishing it, like always, just ticking it off the rocks after you make contact is the recipe for getting bit.

Of course it is also the recipe for getting hung up.. But that is part of the game..

A chatterbait has also been a good producer as of late, and several folks have told me the high-dollar Jackhammer is the way to go, and it catches a lot more fish that a standard chatterbait..

Does it really? I don't know.. But a lot of folks think so.. But it is hard to spend $18 on a freaking chatterbait.. But then again, I don't know too many fishermen who won't trade a Jackson for a sure fire shortcut to catching fish.

I'll be waiting for your report..

The lake is kinda holding steady right now, and has only wavered a few inches either way the last two weeks.. The old Veleno bridge is still just under the water, and has claimed a few more victims the last ten days. You can see it on the right day, with the water lapping the tops of the posts on the rails..

If you have not been here in a while, and are reading this in advent of your trip down here, please stop in the store for your complimentary map of the danger area. I can't sell you no more baits on day two of your trip when you total your boat on day one..

The lake is sitting at about 263.90 right now, and that equates to 37.3 feet low. We are actually up a few tenths since the middle of the month.. But we'll see how it goes.

I know the powers that be are pressuring the IWBC and TCEQ to not let us drop any farther.. But who knows what is in store.. The Mexicans are still not releasing ANY water out of the Conchos.. Barely enough to keep the river alive..

When we get this level, the municipal water supply folks start to get a little antsy. And of course our water quality does not improve with a low water level.

 

What we need down here in Zapata, is for a pillow company to move here.. Like My Pillow or something like it..

With all the fuckin' cormorants and pelicans we have here, we could make pillows for all the homeless in America. And we could employ hundreds, pluckin them fuckin' cormorants after I kill em.. After the government pulls their head out of their ass and allows us to protect our fisheries, habitat, water supply, and economy.

This is just retarded.. And according to Webster, that means very stupid or foolish.. I think both definitions apply..

 

Speaking of retarded, have you watched any of the Democratic debates. What a shit show.

These people will tell you that they are forward looking, enlightened people, with a vision for America far beyond anything we can even comprehend. Free everything. For everybody...

Well if you have a problem comprehending what they are envisioning, take a look at Cuba.. Or Venezuela.. Or pick any other third world shit hole country you want.

I find the semantics used by the politically correct so freakin funny.. Remember when there were Third World Countries? No. NO.. That term is strictly passe'.. Now they are Developing Countries..

Yeah, my ass.. They won't be developing anything anytime soon..

Unless the US develops it for em.. They may have the raw materials to make bread.. But the United States is the yeast that makes it all possible..

Don't believe in American exceptionalism? Then you haven't paid much attention in class..

How do you think that America got to this point in time?

One word. Capitalism..

And what does capitalism reward?

Now pay attention kids.. This will be the bonus point question at the end of the lesson.

The correct answer is; Hard Work.

Now 'hard work' includes more than the definition of the term.

Hard work encompasses many aspects that include not only hard work, but to work smart. But how do you work smart if you are stupid. Or ignorant..

Ah.. So education is also a part of hard work..

There are many types of education. I personally went to the school of Hard Kocks.. Got a fuckin' PHD..

But I was never afraid to get dirty, get after it, and get a paycheck..

And if you have any desire at all to make a decent living in America, it ain't hard to figure out..

But you can't be afraid of the bonus question answer..

If you are, then you will always be dependant on the likes of the "everything will be free" candidates that you see on TV.

And you will never achieve shit, in the big picture..

Because something given, will never be worth the same, as the same thing earned.

 

I'll get off the soapbox and return you to your regularly scheduled fishing report..

These fish are fixin to spawn and I intend to fish my ass off the next warm stretch starting this weekend. And maybe I'll finally catch a big Mo-Fo.. I'm overdue.. And so are you!

Hope to see you on the water and if we can help you in any way give us a shout..

And P.S. If you are a gun guy, check out my new page on our gun inventory. I have a few oddities in there you might be looking for..

See you on the water!

February 20, 2020: We're racing thru the month of February, and two months from now all this cold shit will be a bad memory.. Not that we can complain too much, it has been a mild and wonderful winter..

Didn't think I'd ever use wonderful and winter in the same sentence.. But it has been very nice overall.. All the Yankees down here haven't even broke out their long britches yet..

OK. So we were on this long warming streak that ended on Tuesday night. When this cool front blew in. Not with a vengeance, but it got cool and damp, and yesterday we stayed in the middle fifties.. Down from 88° the day before.. And we got two more days of this torture to live thru before the sun is going to make its return over the weekend..

On Monday, we started hearing of some decent reports of numbers of fish, and fish that were definitely up shallow doing the deed, making babies.. About time..

And Tuesday, the day it got really warm, lots of folks reported very good numbers of fish, and most of them in water in six feet or less.. We got several reports of over thirty fish, which as of late has pretty much been unheard of.. And the quality has been very nice. Lots of six to eight pound fish, and some DD's mixed in..

I had a feeling that something was about to get going because even I caught fish last Sunday, which was a perfect day for fishing.. And I caught em on crankbaits, on shallow rocks.. Here in the Veleno.

But in the last two days I have heard of fish coming from almost every creek towards the back on hardwoods.

The cooler weather did not seem to bother the fish too much yesterday, but we'll see what day two of the cooler temps does to em today..

Of course today is supposed to be a little wetter, and a little windier.. So it will surely keep a few more folks off the lake.

Soft plastics seem to be the best for these shallow fish, but a spinnerbait or a squarebill thru the hardwoods will also catch em.. But no doubt plastics are king when it comes to catching fish that are in the bedding mood. More time around the beds, with a slow presentation increases the chance of you getting bit..

We are not seeing fish on beds as our water is not clear enough for that. But you know they are bedding fish, and they act like bedding fish.

Be attentive to your line, as a lot of the bites are fish moving the bait without really eating it.. Lots of folks saying that they think the fish are just moving the bait out of their area.. Very common down here.. But you can catch a lot of these fish if you are on your game..

Damn.. I just reread what I wrote and this report almost sounds optimistic..

I do realize what is happening.. I remembered what my old friend, "The Chief" told me years ago.. Of course I am talking about Gaylon Gilbreath of Beacon Lodge fame. Of course that ain't all he is famous for.. You don't run into a man every day that can piss over a school bus.. Long ways..

But I digress..

The Chief always said that till the Huisache trees start blooming, them fish ain't going to spawn. And for whatever reason we have a late bloom on the trees this year, but they are busting out right now like crazy.

It is still dry as a popcorn fart down here, so our spring color in the pastures might not be what it usually is. But what color we have is fixing to expose itself brilliantly in the next two weeks.. The blackbrush is a site to behold when whole hillsides are covered in white and yellow blooms.

The Huisache will be a dull to bright orange engulfing the entire trees..

I remember the old days, when the trees were surrounded by water.. And at the end of the day your entire carpet would be orange..

It'll happen again.. I just hope I still have the same pair of shoes..

Reports of lots of mega sized crappie being caught near the hardwoods while bass fishing have been very common. These fish are also making their push to the shallows to spawn. Lots of real two pounders have been caught this last week.

Here's a few pics of a few fish we saw this week. And a couple from just a bit back.

Ben Eaddy made his first trip to Falcon about two weeks ago.. And while fishing was tough, he hung in there and threw crankbaits off the dam and end ended up catching this 11.52 pounder. He says he thinks he'll be back.. Another PB from Falcon..

Here's another fattie caught last week..

Jerrod Crouch caught this Rosie this week as well.

And here is a pic of a fish caught out of two feet of water on Tuesday.. Tail worn and and it looks like it is half spawned out.. Somethin' is goin on..

That fish was caught by one of the water wagon boys that are here for their annual Falcon invasion.. They said they slayed em on Tuesday..

Well if the spawn has started in earnest, all I can say it it's about time. But I think it will take a few more days to make a definitive acclimation to whether it is really on..

I gotta go.. And I hope you gotta go.. Fishin of course.

See you on the water!

February 11, 2020: The last few days have been pretty nice, and yesterday was beautiful.. And then today happened.. And it ain't what was predicted a few days ago.

At two this afternoon we are sitting in the low fifties with a light north wind.. That wasn't supposed to get here..

Yesterday it was middle eighties and light south winds.. Perfect.. With water temps up to sixty seven.. And some numbers of bass caught up shallow. On spinnerbaits and flipping and squarebills..

Maybe something is fixin to happen.. But this cloudy and cool weather ain't gonna help any..

I'm just glad to hear of several groups of fishermen catching over ten fish. In shallow water no less..

I told myself that I just wadn't going bass fishing till I heard about some of this.. Bout damn time..

It sounds like a lot of different baits were used to catch em in the shallower water.. Flipping fish and some spinnerbait fish.. In three feet or less. Like this one caught yesterday by Tom that weighed 10.71.

He was fishing with John Adami..

There were some boys down a few days last week that wore em out on the dam.. Throwing crankbaits on the rocks where they run out in about fourteen feet of water.. They caught a ten, several eights, and this 11.42 caught by Bryan Waitman. Said it was the best trip of their lives.. While a lot of folks were struggling..

There have been some real nice fish caught, but know that the man hours put in have been great.

Pat White caught this one weekend before last in the Atascosa Bass Club tournie.

Larry Shadrick caught this 11.40 last week.

Charlie Daniels caught this non-weighed fattie last week as well..

And last weekend in the Universal City Bass Club James Kosub caught this 10.86..

Kendall Collier caught this 10.21 last week as well..

If you look at al the pictures you will notice all of these fish are big, fat, Rosies.. That have not spawned. And I have still not heard of any big fish that have been caught that have spawned..

I have never seen any animals that have held off this long to make love..

The lake is still falling ever so slowly, and this morning we are sitting at about 263.80. Amistad is releasing a bit more than we are, but it is getting used on the way here and by us of course.. The Mexican lakes on the Conchos are still not letting any water out.

El Cuchillo is releasing about 9000 CFS into Sugar, in anticipation of irrigation I am sure.

The concrete ramp at the state park is about unusable unless you have an airboat. But lots and lots of folks have been launching on the bank after you follow the canal out on the west side of the ramp. 4X4 is a plus in this endeavor.

Launching at the Tigers is good off the bank as well.

The county ramp here in Z town is fine and still on concrete for a long time. We have dropped 1.75 feet in the last month.

The old Veleno bridge is just under the surface, and if you look you can see it just under the water. If we drop a few more inches we will switch from IFR to VFR..

Look for the two orange Freon cans tied together located right on the west end of the bridge. Proceed past the bridge to the west of the floats about ten yards and you are good to go.. If you don't know, ASK!!

I'm anticipating this place to bust open and day.. But I have been saying that for a month..

Most of the bait balls are still about ten to fourteen feet deep, and evidently the fish have been happy to stay out there and pig out while avoiding anything artificial.. Fuckers must have all had Lasic..

In any case I don't have a magic bullet for you right now.. You just gotta go fishing and jerk when your cork goes under..

 

If you just came here looking for a fishing report, you can X out now..It's probably just gonna get worse from here..

I was thinking the other day, which often gets me in trouble, but I came across a thought that surely could make someone some money.. And if you fuckers (term of endearment) have been paying attention, you know I have come up with a lot of ideas you could make money on.. For you entrepreneurial types.

I see and hear all these commercials for male enhancement and for Low T centers that will jack up your testosterone levels to that of a budding porn star.. Make you carry around more wood than the Santa Maria..

I also see a lot of commercials for the manly types, selling what else, but Cold Beer..

Why in the hell ain't somebody making Cold Beer with Testosterone in it?

No man thinks he's sexier than with a ten beer buzz, and this way he could still deliver the goods during inebriation..

Just wait till Budweiser gets a hold of this.. As a nation we are falling far behind the Chinese in reproduction.. And if we are gonna beat them Communist son of a bitches we need to do more procreating..

Football season is over, and golf now fills the airwaves on Sunday afternoons. Which ain't a bad thing.. At least these millionaires earn what they get by performance, rather than negotiation..

I am not sure what will happen first; Falcon filling up or the Cowboys winning a Superbowl.. I'm no bookie, but I think I'd bet on the Rio Grande..

Did you watch any of the political theatrics for the last two months performed by a bunch of assholes up in DC? No square inch of America was immune to the bullshit show that oozed out of the House like puss from a brown recluse bite..

If it wasn't so pitiful it would be funny.. But it ain't.

I do think it is time to start negotiations to separate the two sides from each other. It can be done peacefully..

All of you fuckers (not a term of endearment) that like baby killin', illegal immigration, full scale drug legalization, rampant homosexuality and pick your sex, atheism, and soccer, need to be separated from the rest of us.

Draw a fuckin line.. North to South or East to West.. And I'll get on my side of it..

Or better yet let's get Texas out of the union and put me in charge of immigration.. And deportations..

I always wanted a government job..

Of course the first thing I would do is dig a ditch from Missouri to west Texas.. After I kicked out all the son of a bitches described above.. I guess that'd be the second thing.. They got too much water. We ain't got enough.. WTF this is a no brainer..

I'd also make I-35 and IH-10 ten lanes wide from border to border.. Ala Rick Perry.. But he couldn't get it done.. The Trans-Texas corridor.. Short sighted son of a bitches.. Texas is bustin at the seams..

We're the best in the world at what we do.. So let's quit fuckin around and get it done..

The sky's the limit Baby! If it happens in the world, we do it here.. And we do it good..

 

I could go on to talk about a lot of other things.. And I am sure I will.. But this is low dose radiation and we'll have another treatment fore too long..

Get your boat ready and line up a kitchen pass.. Cause the shit is going to hit the fan soon.. It has to!

See you in the funny papers..

February 6, 2020: I have been busier than a Chinese mask salesman this last week, and I just have not had time to sit in front of the computer and type..

February is always our busiest month, and combining that with all the other stuff I have myself involved in, and trying to fish a bit, has got me behind on several fronts..

Speaking of fronts, we had one blow thru here the last twenty four hours, and we have had lows around forty the last two mornings. I am not sure what that is going to do to the fishing.. But I don't think it can hurt it..

Reports are all over the board. From one fish to twenty fish. And buck bass to double digits.

Finding something consistent has been the hard thing. Bout the time you think you have em figured out... Not..

There have been some beautiful fish caught this week, but the catch rate per hour has been less than spectacular.

And I don't know what it is going to take to get these fish to spawn.

I have seen pics of several ten pound fish this week, and they still look like they are going to bust. And all of the smaller females in the four to whatever size they are, look no different.

I have yet to see a pic of a spawned out fish.. Or have anybody tell me about one..

I am sure surface temps have taken a little dip in the last twenty four hours, but it is going to be short lived. I would bet water temps this AM are right about 60°, but will be back in the mid sixties in a couple of days..

In the last couple of days, not counting yesterday, (nobody we talked to fished yesterday) the crankbait bite in the ten to twelve foot range has produced the most quality fish. My brother talked to a couple of guys that tore them a new ass on the rocks.. On the dam. Go figure..

There are still some fish being caught off the brush piles, and a Texas rigged bait like a brush hog or a senko has been good.

But make no mistake, the fish are still spotty.. And often times it is difficult to repeat what worked so well yesterday.

It seems that the fish are hanging around in the ten foot range off shelves and ledges, and once a day or so they move up and feed. And if you are in the right place at the right time, you can be reminded why you drive all the way down here.

I have often said that the spawn is the most unpredictable time to fish. And this year is proving to be no different.

I have also heard of several alligator gar being caught on crankbaits.. That'll mess up your tackle..

Like always, persistence is key. You gotta get out there and show it to em..

 

We have had quite a few folks down from all over the place, to include a lot of Okies and Cajuns. And a lot of folks from north Texas as well. And for Falcon, we have been pretty busy.

A few of you have sent me e-mails with links to the story about Mexican farmers storming the dam on Presa Boquilla up in northern Mexico. Boquilla is the first link and the biggest lake on the Conchos river chain, the source of where all big water comes from that eventually gets to us.

Rumor has it that the Mexican president is talking about repaying some of the water debt owed to the US and the farmers are demanding that the water be retained for their use.

Currently Boquilla, which is similar in size to Falcon in water volume, albeit a little smaller, is sitting at 69% of pool. Madero, the next lake on the chain, which is much smaller, is at 97%. And the third and lake lake in the chain, Luis Leon, is at 77%.

Currently there is about zero water being let out of any of them. After water finally leaves Luis Leon it runs North to the Rio Grande near Presidio in Big Bend.

I'll be waiting..

 

The last two weeks have seen several boats hit the old Veleno bridge.. Including one this morning.. If you are reading this and are coming down here, do yourself a favor and stop in here and get details on its location.

I've got some pics to post, and a few opinions on the current state of the union..

But it is going to have to wait till I have a bit more time.

If you need a Mexican fishing license, give us a call and we'll have it ready when you get here.

And we'll see you then!

January 28, 2020: If you don't like winter, Zapata has been the place to be.. Unlike last winter, the fronts that have made it down here have not had the punch, and low temps have been balmy.. Jimmy like..

And with that being said, our water temperatures have not been close to the fifties in about a month. Daytime highs have been in the eighties a lot, and currently our water is about 67 degrees, some days a bit cooler and some days pushing seventy in the shallows.

And with water temps like they are one would think that the bass should be spawning. But if they are, evidence has been harder to come by than in the impeachment hearings..

In both cases I have heard plenty of bullshit, but no concrete proof..

There were several beautiful tens caught last weekend, but there were a lot of man hours being put in for the results.

Also saw pics of an eleven yesterday.. But I haven't seen the picks in my e-mail just yet.

Where are all the little fish, and the males in the shallows? When you figure that out please let me know.

I have heard of a few numbers of fish caught up shallow, but the pattern has been hard to duplicate. Nobody I know is going out and consistently catching a dozen or more fish in a half day of fishing.. It should be easy.. But it ain't..

Best pattern for big fish is time on the water, and chunking a deep diving crankbait. Ten feet plus is still producing more big fish than anything else.

Other deep water tactics are also catching a few, like a C-rig or a shakey head fished on the same ledges and humps.. If I was after a big fish, I would still be fishing in sight of the dam or in the Tigers.

The Deep Diving Spro is still as good as any to throw. Stop by and I'll show you the colors that are working best.

A senko is also catching some fish, and you can fish it Texas rigged or on your favorite.

The crappie have been nothing short of excellent, if you are fishing sunken brush or hardwoods. Good electronics are a must, but I hear that some fish are starting to show up a little shallower on some hardwoods in the six to ten foot range..

Way back in the creeks in Tigers or the Veleno are two good choices.. You dip a bunch of trees and you are gonna catch some fish. And they are some beautiful fish as well.

White bass have still been good on the main lake and you can run into a school of them and they will eat you up. The locals are wearing them out up the river in San Ygnacio.

The catfish are also good, on most anything you like to fish with.. From weenies to chicken liver to shad.. Stinkbait around standing timber is also good..

 

Water levels have been hanging around just above 264. Amistad has been releasing about what we have, so we are dropping ever so slowly.. We may stay level if nothing else happens.

The old Veleno bridge has claimed a couple more victims this week. Including one today.. See the map below to learn how to avoid it and stop by the store and I will give you farther instructions.

I hate that we have this problem, after all these years of bitching about it to IWBC, it is still causing thousands of dollars in damages to boats on a regular basis.

Even if they won't remove it, they should surely keep the son of a bitch marked. Another government agency that could really give a shit.. Our tax dollars at work.. Actually it is insulting..

Falcon has always been the red-headed stepchild of Texas lakes. Any other lake in the state this would be a non issue..

Bridge rant over.. Just in time to start another one..

 

Sharelunker season is underway, and I don't guess anyone has caught one yet. No I am not talking about a eight or a ten pounder. I'm talking about a thirteen pound fish.

Those fish are nice fish but not monsters.. What Sharelunker has promised to do for some thirty years.

I hear people talking about all the data that is being collected by this new SL program.. I seriously doubt if many people are taking fin or scale samples of these fish and mailing them in. I'd really like to know the number..

They advertise that they can find out if your fish is related to a parent sharelunker.. Whooptie-do..

What matter does that make? In the very near future all brood stock at TPWD will come from previous SL fish. At least that is what I hear. Fine and dandy.. But that ain't gonna grow bigger fish. These fish are nothing but pure Florida fish that happened to live in an environment that was conducive and got lucky to not be eaten by fish, fowl, or man.

I truly believe that a very high percentage of Florida bass will grow to 13 pounds. Under the right conditions.

But you cannot force mother natures hand.

If we put more money into the lakes than the stocking we would be light years ahead.

Aging lakes and their loss of habitat is the biggest enemy of big bass.. And PAW killing everything green in a lot of lakes don't help either..

It is hard and expensive, but growing bass to a larger size before stocking would help the survival immensely. No one knows for sure what the survival of fingerlings are, and I am sure every lake is different. But it is miniscule, I assure you.

In the last thirty years there have been two 13 pound fish that are descendants of pure Florida SL fish.. I'm a little more results oriented than that. And when someone catches a teener they don't really give a shit whether it is a pure Florida or not.

Sharelunker has been a marvelous tool for advertising Texas fishing.. You'll get no argument from me there..

But if you look past the hype and look at the the facts about SL.. You'll see that it has made zero difference in growing bigger bass in Texas.

I can make a pretty good case that it has hurt big bass fishing in Texas.. And has certainly hurt the chances of ever breaking the state record..

I know in the future Falcon will refill.. And what will happen afterward will again be epic.

But that is controlled by mother nature.. Not Austin. And there is no telling when that might be.

If Choke Canyon or Ivie would refill, and keep water a few years, the shit will again hit the fan..

New lake syndrome.. That's nature baby.. And keep an eye out for Choke in the next two months..

But all the lakes in North and East Texas, with fairly consistent water levels, will have little chance of turning out the giant numbers of giant fish like they did in the past..

Certainly they will put out some monsters here and there.. But those days of twenty and thirty SL fish in a season are long gone..

If I sound like a Debbie Downer, I'm sorry.. But I like to use facts instead of hyperbole when it comes to this shit..

But don't worry, you can still get a ribbon for an eight pounder..

 

There is no cover on the banks at Falcon at this water level.. It's rocks and sticks.. And the outlook for a good spawn and survival of the fry is poor. Some will survive, sure.. But piss poor numbers..

I have started cutting and planting brush in the lake at various locations right along the shoreline. Not offshore.. It ain't much when you consider the lake is 25 miles long..

But it cain't hurt. So grab your axe and get your whacks..

I'm feeling skinnier already..

And I know in the next few weeks I am going to fuck up some pinnerbait fish along these banks..

We hope to see you down here before too long..

And I hope to be back with a "Get your ass down here " report one day soon..

See you on the water!

January 21, 2020: Here we are three weeks into the new year, and it still don't seem like winter has come and lit.. Of course I'm not one to complain about it not being cold. I'm just trying to figure out if the fish know winter has done come and gone..

Or has it?

Water temps yesterday were sitting in the middle sixties, and some folks reported 68 in the afternoon. That's shallow protected water of course.. But 68 is spawning water for sure..

I'm just not sure if we ever got cold enough to let the fish know that we did cool off.. And now it is time to get shallow and make babies..

We only had a couple of days where the water even got down in the high fifties..

I think they are confused.. I know the fishermen are.. I did talk to a couple of folks that fished yesterday and did pretty good. Most of the fish were still a bit deeper, but it appears that they are starting to show up a bit shallower, just a bit higher on the ridges and humps.

The big fish pics I have been seeing show mis-shaped bellies that are as rotund as can be, and look like they are going to pop.. Something has got to happen soon.. I have seen no pics of flabby hollow bodied fish that have spawned.. But I believe it is imminent..

It is possible that these fish will spawn a bit deeper this year, with the falling water levels. If it keeps falling.. Who knows.. I saw yesterday on the lake levels page that Amistad increased the output.. They told me last week that they weren't going to..

Who knows..

Bass Champs has come and gone, and while results were nothing spectacular, they weren't too bad either.. Twenty six and change was the winning weight, and anytime you catch a five pound average well that ain't too shabby.

I know everybody wants 2010 back, as do I, but that ain't where we are right now. And looking at current water levels, and available cover in the lake, this year does not look like we will be in re-building mode..

But you put water in the lake, and I don't care what time of year it is, these fish will bounce back so fast you'll think it was impossible.. Seen it too many times to deny it..

And we did have a decent summertime spawn this year.. Call me crazy.. I can live with it.

Bass Champs held the weigh in under the pavilion roof down at the county ramp this year, and I think it worked out really well. Especially with predicted rain, that did not appear. We're gonna do it again in March, and I think as the fishermen get used to it it's all gonna be good. No use standing in the sun and getting sand in your eyes when we've got a big roof and concrete to stand on.

We also had a little shuttle service to help fishermen to their trucks and to the weigh in with sacks of fish.. Worked out pretty well I think..

And granted the worst part of it all is that we only have two wide launching and loading at the ramp.. I heard more complaints about that than anything else.. Wish I could fix it..

Thanks to all of you who came down, and to all of you who came in and spent your hard earned money with us.. We really appreciate it..

Texas Bass Nation also fished last weekend, and I have not heard their final results.. I think they had thirty two fishermen. I am sure results are on their website.. But I ain't got there yet. It's always a pleasure hosting their registration here at the shop.

From most reports, fish were mostly caught deeper than ten feet. Crankbaits were still the most popular, but fish were also caught on Jigs and C-rigs.

Any crankbait with some chartreuse on it can catch some fish. Citrus Shad is still a great color as well..

The crappie are still going great, especially if you find the right brushpile.. Surprisingly, many of them are still in twenty plus feet of water.. But they are going to head for the shallows soon.

The white bass are lousy and can be caught in almost all areas of the lake.. Many have headed up the river to spawn, and the locals are tearing them a new ass up in San Ygnacio off the bank.

Not all the white bass go up the river, and lots of them are being caught on points, where the blacks should be.

Catfishing remains steady, with most anybody who knows their habits catching all they want. A few whoppers have been caught lately on rod and reel as well.. This lake certainly has got em..

I'm doing a trip this Thursday that I donated to the Catch A Special Thrill organization that we do each year.. So I'll have a couple of hard core fishermen with me, and it will force me to stay out there and bust it for a change.. And I will follow up and provide pics of the giants that we catch.. You gotta believe, baby..

I think that soon, very soon, we just have to have a wave of fish come shallow. That's what I live for.. And when it happens I'll let you know..

Hopefully soon. Very soon..

January 17, 2020: Hey Kids! What time is it?

That's right.. It's Bass Champs time!

And all of the gettin ready has pretty much been done around here.. And now it is time for fishing to get underway..

Well almost..

Registration will be down at the County Ramp this afternoon, and I imagine that about lunchtime we'll see more boats in town than we have in a year..

To all of you launching a boat this weekend.. And beyond.. If you don't know by now the old Veleno bridge on the way out of the creek is just under the water, and it is a hazard that must be avoided..

It is easily done by running the west side of the creek when exiting the Veleno.

We have marked the west end of the bridge with several floats and markers, the biggest of which is two orange freon cans tied together. Exiting the Veleno put them on your left and you will be fine..

By Saturday morning the tops of the bridge railings may be visible, but were not yesterday.

I'm neither Lewis or Clark, but here's a rough sketch of the layout..

Running the lake is no problem if you run the markers or the channel on your GPS.

So if you kids pay attention you should have no problems traveling the lake from top to bottom.

Yesterday we saw the Highway Patrol boats down here.. And some of the Coast Guard guys are here on vacation riding with the Border Patrol..

I have no idea what they are doing.. But they be burning some fuel...

Not much has changed this week.. Except the water temperature.. Upper sixties the last few days..

Something is fixing to happen..

We are still dropping a bit each day, but the water is not pouring out.. Heard from IWBC.. They are not planning on replacing any water here till they release another 100,000 acre feet.. In my estimation that's about three feet of water..

We'll see if Mother Nature helps us out any with rain in the Valley..

Several lakes in MO and OK still have too much water.. Time to start on that pipeline.. That's another subject..

Time has been short for me this week, and it is again today.. But I hope to see you today.. Or sometime soon..

Good Luck!

January 10, 2020: It's Friday in Zapata.. And probably where you are too. And the wind is blowing out of the south like a Mo-Fo..

And tonight it is gonna swing to the north like a Mo-Fo..

I know Dallas is getting hammered as I type..

I would never tell you to not go fishing.. But today and tomorrow need to be treated with caution.. This kinda shit will make you get or remember your religion if you are out on the big water..

"Lord please just get me back to the ramp and I promise I'll never do this again.."

Yeah.. Till next time.. Been there and done that.. But I find as I get older I want to get older.. So I try to err on the side of caution..

 

Not many folks out on the lake today as you can imagine.. But there were a lot yesterday. And the reports were mixed but I heard a few folks caught some bucks up shallow on spinnerbaits..

It's gonna happen sooner or later.. Full moon you know.. Water temps 62ish..

The main reason I am writing today is to let you know the the Mexican License system is back up and annual licenses are available again. So if you are needing one, by whatever means you want to get it, do it now.

We will be glad to help you if you need a license.. Just call us at 956-765-4866..

Next Friday, the evening before Bass Champs, we may or may not be able to help you..

Hope we have good weather next weekend.. We'll see..

Also, yesterday Robert Riessig and I put a marker on the west end of the Veleno bridge.. It is three jugs tied together.. Orange, blue and white.. To the west of that marker is another gallon jug with red paint on it.. It is safe anywhere between the two..

The bridge is still about 15" under water, and not in sight. I will put a large marker on it when the water goes down a bit more and I can see it.. Hopefully I will have it on there before next weekend..

The lake is on a slow fall.. No telling what the release rate will be this week.. I have gotten no reply from IWBC when I e-mailed..

See yall soon!

January 7, 2020: Seems a little strange typing and writing 2020. But I reckon I'll get used to it.. I ain't messed up a check yet.. But I am sure it is coming..

We have had a windy day or two the last week, but we have also had some of the prettiest winter weather that anyone could imagine.. Middle seventies the last three.. Low winds..

That's why Jimmie lives here.. I hate the freakin cold..

 

The fish are not liking the blue bird skies as much as I am, according to most reports. The fish have been playing a little hard to get.

Bass

Well a few folks have done well, but most folks are struggling to put a numbers game together. Six to twelve fish a boat has been a common report, but a few folks have caught some numbers of good fish.

But overall I have heard more bitchin than bragging..

A shakey head has been pretty good, if you can say that about any bait. A deep crankbait is still outselling any other bait, even if it may or may not be outfishing any other bait.

And the Carolina rig is still catching some fish as well.

I fished the last two days just because the weather has been so beautiful. And I will have to say that for me the fishing is less than stellar.

On Saturday I fished the Veleno and specific spots of trees on the river on the Mexican side from Beacon to Diablo. I proved to myself that there are damn few biting fish in the hardwoods.. And the water looks crappy up on this end of the lake as well. Two small fish in three hours is not good fishing to me..

Yesterday I fished Pierces and a few spots in the Tigers with no better results.. I saw a couple of nice fish being netted.. But I wasn't doing any of it..

So I went crappie fishing..

Water temps were right around 62°. The water color from midlake south looks awesome.. But you have to get at least to marker nine before it gets very pretty.. But I know a lot of folks who fish chocolate water and they think this shit is pretty clear.. I guess it is just psychological to me..

 

Crappie

If you are a serious crappie fisherman, then you have a much better chance of getting your jollies. The paper mouths have been delicious.. I mean devouring a tube jig..

Limits have been pretty easy for the skilled and if you are good with electronics you can find them clinging to hardwoods and brushpiles.

Red and Chart jigs have been good, but Monkey Milk and Electric Chicken have also been a staple. The Electric Chicken has really been good in the dirtier water.

Jared Gonzales has been taking some folks out on crappie trips and they have been whacking them.

Call him if you wanna go catch a few.. 210-294-0630

 

White Bass

They've been everywhere lately.. And are really running up the river above Zapata and in San Ygnacio.. Access up there is the hard part.. But you can find them scattered all over the lower end of the lake as well.

Look for birds and surface activity.. They have also been hanging out in the Veleno and on some days you can catch them good right on the boat ramp.

The 1/4 oz Blue Fox with a bucktail is a killer, but a small crankbait or Trap in a shad pattern will also catch a bunch.. You can also catch them fishing vertically with a spoon in deeper water.. Good electronics can really help..

 

Catfish

They love the cooler weather and have been really active.. Rod and reel fishermen have been catching them really good on stinkbait and all sort of dead and cut bait.. Find some hardwoods on a drop off and chunk er out..

Some really nice sized fish have been caught, and some whoppers on large cut bait on jugs and trot lines..

And sometimes the rod and reel fishermen catch some monsters too..

 

Cormorants

Well them motherfuckers are everywhere.. But this week they have reservations here in the Veleno.. They must have gotten a group rate.. Holy shit..

Still not a peep out of PAW or any other entity about any plan to control these thousands of sons-a-bitches.. They're a poison going unchecked and ruining our fishery and habitat and water supply.. It is truly sad.. I can't believe we are this stupid..

Lake Levels/Hazards

The lake has started a slow drop as water is starting to be released for what I will assume is the beginning of irrigation season. As of today the state park ramp is operational, but I am not sure how long it will last. But not long at current release rates.

If it keeps falling I should have a marker on the Old Veleno bridge by weeks end.. We'll see..

The county ramp is fine but flat, and two wide..

Cover for spawned fish is virtually nonexistent.. Rocks and hardwoods.. Manmade brushpiles.. Bout it..

 

Mexican Licenses

Heard today from the company operating Online sales for Mexico that Annual licenses may not be available for two or three weeks as they are waiting for a contract renewal from CONAPESCA..

Currently only weekly and daily licenses are available.. That's as of today.. I do not know what will happen in the next few but will advise when annuals are available again.

A quote from them: "We are waiting for the new contract to arrive from Conapesca. The monthly and yearly options should be available in two to three weeks."

But the weekly and daily will be available till then according to management.

That might put a kink in some plans.. But for the time being we can still get you the weekly's to keep you legal if desired/needed..

 

Tournaments

Bass Champs comes to town on the 18th, after opening their 2020 season at Sam Rayburn this weekend.

We look forward to seeing a lot of you guys again and we have already seen a good number of you.. Thanks for coming in!

If your bass club is heading to town any time soon, or/and if your club has it schedule for 2020 done, I would appreciate it if you sent it to me. I'll add you to our tournament page so others can see who is coming when.

Other than that, everything is quiet around here.. The town is full of snowbirds and sunshine and that is the way we like it..

I have heard of no instances on the lake where anyone has been bothered. There are a lot of netters midlake.. And occasionally a net on the US side.. Like always, be aware of where you are, and pay attention to your surroundings..

Reckon that is true no matter where you are..

Bout it..

 

I have been watching some football lately, and with football comes commercials.. Mostly shitty ones.. And ridiculous ones..

Here's a couple of my favs..

Have you seen the new T-Mobile commercials about 5G? The ones where they show pink/fuscia laser beam like streaks going across the sky.. Heading out in all directions enabling your connection to internet heaven?

Star struck people and children staring into the night sky.. Their mouths agape.. Drool running down their chins, as they marvel at the beauty of 5G..

Are you fuckin kidding me? This ain't the Aurora Borealis.. You can't fuckin see microwaves..

But maybe too many people have stuck their heads in the Radar-range while they heated up their Swanson's.. I mean home cooked gourmet dinners..

That's about the most intelligence insulting shit I have ever seen..

 

Not to be outdone, Toyota has a new one out about their newest Humvee.. I mean Camry..

A man and his daughter are up early.. Eating breakfast.. I don't think he had a hair bun.. But he might have.. Each eyeballing the clock..

Suddenly they both spring up, and jump into the family assault vehicle.. And the dad skillfully dodges all sorts of calamity including craters and a barrage of exploding mortars as they navigate across the barren and bombed out war zone on the way to junior high..

This ain't fuckin Iraq.. Give me a break..

In a car that sports a four cylinder engine with less displacement than my fuckin' lawnmower.. Yall probably already forgot about the commercial proclaiming it the "Wild One".

My ass..

 

The good news is that we are just a few months away from total saturation of the airwaves by political candidates telling you how they can make America a country where we can all live in peace and harmony and have everything provided for everyone..

All the while blowing flowers and rainbows up your ass..

If you need it, we are going to provide it..

What a crock of shit..

Ain't nobody, nowhere, ever gotten anywhere, for any length of time, without good old fashioned hard work..

I ain't talking about the Richie Rich Motherfuckers that were born with a Silver Spoon up their ass.

I'm talking about you and me.. The Common Working Man..

And trust me those candidates that are promising the moon ain't talking to the Richie Rich Motherfuckers..

Richie already has the moon..

But candidate X needs something you do have.. Your vote..

And they will lie, cheat and steal to get it.. And promise you shit beyond your wildest dreams if you just get them into power..

And if you are that stupid, to believe that all this shit can be manufactured and supplied to you, at no cost and with no effort by you..

Well then you really are a stupid Motherfucker..

And as Walter Cronkite would say, "And that's the way it is.."

Whatever your situation, long term, only you can change it. And if you are counting on someone else to make you happy and successful.. It's gonna be a tough life..

 

Well shit, I gotta go.. I got work to do.. Getting ready for your visit..

I'll see you soon.. Hopefully on the water!

December 30, 2019: Here we are at the end of the decade, and twenty years past the turn of the century.. Lotsa folks said we'd never make it this far..

But darn it the old world just keeps on turning.. And as fast as the world is spinning you'd think that it would toss all the fish out of the top of the water with all that centrifugal force..

Gravity is a bitch..

It has been a dry but pleasant stretch down here. Cool mornings but really pretty nice days. It is about January after all..

We are predicted to get some rain this week.. I'll believe it when I see it.. We are going to end the year with less than twelve inches or rain. And that is dry, even for Zapata..

The last week has been really hit and miss with the fishing down here.. For bass anyway..

A lot of folks have told me it has been really tough, with numbers of fish being really low. Reports of three or four fish a day have been common..

There are a few overachievers that have been out, and I reckon they happened on a school of biting fish at the right time. But it is not the norm.

In that mixture of poor reports have also been a few reports of nice fish. Here are a few from last weekend..

Bill Cirone caught this 10.25..

Dave Dobronski caught this ten off the rip rap on the dam..

Noel Taylor caught this 10.03 in the Veleno..

And a few casts later his boat partner Jerry Rinehart caught this 8.13..

Deep diving crankbaits are still the best big fish bait. But I am hearing more and more about fish being caught on jigs. Most of the bigger fish are still coming from between ten and twenty feet of water from all reports.

And it is still about rocks, rocks and rocks.. The hardwoods have produced few fish from all I have heard. And there is just no small or thick cover in the lake, other than brush piles that have been put out by fishermen.

And none of them are in spawning depth water. When the fish do move up I am sure that anything resembling a laydown or a tree with some gnarly root system will be good place to find a bedding fish, although there is going to be very little to no sight fishing this year. Water color in 95% of the lake will not allow you to see over a couple of feet deep.

And that is not unusual. Water color on the south end of the lake is really nice by Falcon standards..

Water temps are still in the middle sixties, and I don't think we have had the dip in water temps and then the rise that signals the fish to spawn..

Maybe I am crazy but it seems that rising water temps are the biggest trigger.. Usually we drop into the fifties a bit and sometimes for a while.. But it ain't happened yet.

I guess it could anytime.. And I always cringe when I hear the weatherman say, "There is this big chunk of arctic air that is headed south out of Siberia..."

And it is only the end of December.. Winter is just starting.. Well maybe. Maybe not.. But who the hell knows what the weather is going to do..

Well maybe some junior high school kids do.. And some twenty somethings.. Fucking geniuses..

The crappie are still going great guns, and there are some whoppers being caught.. Still in the brushpiles, although there egg development is coming along.. Another month should find a bunch of them in the shallows.. Will advise..

The white bass are all over the lake and giant schools of them have been reported down south. They ought to be heading up the river.. But I am sure all of them don't go.. You can run into them most anywhere.. The locals have been catching them off the bank here at the county ramp.. Some days better than others..

 

Bass Champs comes to town on the 18th of January, and it will be the first BC tourney of 2020. Falcon should be a great place to kick off the new decade. I am not sure what is going to be happening in three weeks..

Maybe I'll have to ask Gretta.. We'll see what the weather does between now and then.. But next weekend looks great from this far out.

One more time I am going to tell you to please get your Mexican fishing license in advance of coming here. If you would like us to procure one for you just give us a call. We'll have it ready when you walk in.

The Mexican licence's are now done online, (in case you have not heard) and their server is down more than Cowboy fans..

And if you walk in here on the Friday before Bass Champs, and want a license we may or may not be able to help you.. So do us both a favor and get it in advance.. Call me with any questions..

 

The Old Veleno bridge took out another couple of lower units this week. Don't forget about it on your way out of the Veleno..

If you are coming here for the first time stop in and get info on how to avoid it.. And yes it is fucking ridiculous that they can't keep the son of a bitch marked..

 

I'm working on my new years resolutions, and like Bob Seger I can't decide what to leave in and what to leave out..

But I am getting old and I figure at this age I better do more of the shit I like and quit trying to cut out things that might not be so good for me..

A man is only going to live so long..

I've decided it's OK to smoke a few cigars.. And good ones.. And if I want a second or third Johnnie Black then it's OK..

I'm gonna be more direct with folks and quit sugar coating everything... And I'm gonna say "Bullshit" more when I hear it..

That's about as far as I have got.. But I think it is a good start..

I certainly hope that you had a good year and decade.. Cause we are about to start a new one. And if you are out and about on New Years Eve think about where you are and what you are doing..

I leave New Years Eve to the amateurs..

UBER is a good thing on occasion.. And this is one of them..

Party safely and we look forward to seeing you next year..

Till then! Happy new Year!

December 18, 2019: I just can't seem to keep up these days.. To many irons in the fire, too many kettles to watch, and too many promises to keep..

I think old man time is catching up with me.. I guess he catches up with everyone sooner or later.. Even though we still remember ourselves as bad asses..

I remember when this shit was easy..

It has been eight days since I wrote, and I guess in the big picture it really doesn't matter. Nobody should be loosing any sleep over anything as mundane as a fishing report that has not really changed in a month. And though I try to keep it interesting by stirring in some bullshit and some brilliance, (rarely my own) it is not hard to see that things have just not changed much here on Falcon..

The water level has not changes in a month..

The bridge in the Veleno is still about fifteen inches under the water, and there is still not a marker on west end of it.. I am going to make an effort to put a weighted/anchored marker on it before Bass Champs gets here on January 18th.

That's right.. Only about thirty days away.. And the 2020 fishing season for the spring will be underway..

The ramp at the state park is still working fine.. Albeit there is not a lot of water in the ditch.. Just go easy till you get out of the canal.

The county ramp is still kinda flat but working fine.. Two wide is basically all it is.. Three if people could back up a trailer.. But we all know how that shit works..

And I don't think we will be catching any water in the next sixty days.. It just ain't that time of year.. Of course we didn't catch any when it was..

And though the lake is low, it is still 24 miles long and two miles wide down south so you better not be thinking we just have a mudhole that don't get rough when the wind blows.. Especially the north wind..

But truthfully the south wind ain't much better.. This Mo-Fo will eat your lunch.. And dinner.. So keep that in mind when you'ns are looking at the flags and says 'It really ain't that bad..'

We don't want anyone's next trip here to be their last.. I'm just sayin..

Water temps are in the upper sixties.. Least they were yesterday.. This morning is the coldest of this fall and we're sitting right at freezing as I write.. And pay no attention to the reported temperature for Zapata.. That is out at the airport and it always reads four to five degrees cooler than it actually is here in town.

For years Falcon Lake Tackle was the official reporting station for the NWS for temperature and rainfall. But dealing with that everyday was a pain in the ass.. Wanting to know how much it rained on a foggy morning.. Calling in temps every afternoon.. Yada, Yada, Yada.. I don't miss it too much..

They did have a really neat rain gauge though.. And I guarantee you that a rain gauge in Zapata will never wear out..

It looks like we are going to wrapping up the year dry, and to date we have received 11.4 inches of rain here at the shop.. Zapata's annual average is about 18 inches, so you can see we have under achieved. On only five occasions did we get more than one inch in 24 hours, with the most being 1.65 inches at the last of March..

That will barely keep the weeds alive.. There were six months when we received less than an inch of rain..

But then again, we are in the Chihuahuan Desert..

Water color is good in the Veleno, but out in the river up north the water color is a bit off.. It ain't chocolate by any means, but it ain't as clear as Hornitos' Silver either..

Once you get south of Diablo it gets a lot better, and from Pierce's south it looks awesome.. And the farther south you go the cleared it gets.. Not that it is clear anywhere.. Just pretty Falcon Green..

I was out of town last weekend to attend a funeral, but I got several e-mail reports from folks who were down. Some did better than others, and none of the numbers were earthshaking, but the common denominator was that they all caught some quality fish. Six and eight pounders were fairly common in their reports, and a couple of them said they caught no undersized fish.. All keepers.. And threes and fours made up the bulk of what they caught..

Daily catches of eight to fifteen fish are common. Some folks are doing better on certain days, but repeating more than twenty fish on consecutive days has been award winning here lately.

We're still selling more crankbaits than anything else. Baits that can get down fifteen feet or more are most popular and the blue/white/chartreuse based baits still are best.

A shakey head or a C-rig is also still a good choice..

I told you nothing has changed..

Lately most fish are being caught in fifteen feet of water, give or take. Twenty ain't too deep. Ten ain't too shallow.

And I hear more and more of fish up on the very shallow rocky edges. I mean throw it on the rocks shallow..

I haven't heard anyone tell me they whacked them in the hardwoods, as much as I would like to say it was so.. There is nothing I would personally rather do than deforest a few of them big sons-a-bitches..

There is just something about flipping a soft plastic into the middle of a big basket hardwood or a laydown and feel that "thump".. And the anticipation from the time you get that tap till you set the hook, although a millisecond, (at least in my younger years) is one of the most awesomenesest feelings that releases all kinds of endorphins and adrenaline into your blood instantly while you are trying to break his/her fuckin' neck..

Well at least that's the way it is for me..

If it ain't that way for you.. Well golf is a lot of fun too..

And just cause you stick a hook in that bastard don't mean you have the fight won. No sir..

If it's a big bitch, and there are trees, twigs, stumps, limbs, or brush anywhere close, you can bet your sweet ass that she is headed there.. Regardless of what pole you have or what drag setting you have selected..

It's a crapshoot and you have no better than a 50-50 chance of getting your picture taken with her..

I still have a scar on my scalp where I drove guide number one down to the skull when my braid broke back in 03..

A day that has lived in infamy.. The blood and tears mixed together running down my face.. Could have been on the cover of a Stephen King novel..

I get all giddy just thinking abut it..

I can't tell you how many big fish I have broke off, misplayed, nonchalanted, mis-netted, mis-lipped, and basically just fucked up back in the day..

And I am sure we all have our stories of regret on a giant or two where things just did not go right.. And I am sure we all have a few stories where we were some lucky som-bitches to get the fish in the boat..

And I think those two types of stories are what drives us to keep going back..

 

In any case, I hope you can get out and do some fishing before the year ends. I looks like a nice weekend coming up and maybe we'll see you down here doing some scouting..

If we don't see you before next Wednesday, then I'd like to wish you and yours a very Merry Christmas..

We'll be closed Christmas eve by noon and all day on Christmas. But I'll be here on the day after sporting some new socks I am sure..

And keep in mind the reason for the season. Jesus lives, and he lives in you and me. So don't be timid about letting him pop out of you on a regular basis..

God Bless You, and Merry Christmas!

December 10, 2019: Winter returned to Zapata this morning with a vengeance, after a week that seemed more like March than December.. And I wadn't complaining..

Worst of it all is the wind, and ain't nobody with a brain the size of a sparrow fishing today.. I ain't however saying, that there is nobody out there.. But I ain't looked.. People never cease to amaze me..

Yesterday was as good as it gets for Zapata in December, with highs in the middle eighties, and light winds that made it very pleasant to be out.. Unfortunately I was stuck in the shop all day.. But I did fish, or try to, on Sunday.

In not so unusual fashion, the weather prediction for winds on Sunday was six to ten MPH from the south.. Maybe a steady six plus ten from the south. With gusts..

I cranked all the rocks from Beacon to the point of the Veleno, shallow and deep.. With very limited results. A couple of small fish.. And evidently the bigger white bass are starting to head up the river as I caught several along the rocky banks, mostly around Paradise Point.. You could go there and catch a bunch if you had a mind to..

I had intended to run up the Salado and see what it looks like. But at the mouth of it the water is only about four feet deep. I realize there is a little delta action going on there, and the water is some deeper in the channel once you get in.

But the water looked like shit and I just spent 5K on a new lower unit, so I opted for waters a bit south.. I must really be getting old.. I said old.. Not to be confused with being a pussy... More on that later..

 

Then I cranked a bunch of shallow rock inside the Veleno, west side, out of the wind. Not a bite.. Well maybe a tap or two but caught squat..

I put it on the trailer about 12:30 and went home and lit a fire..

My results are not and were not typical to a lot of others. Some folks actually did pretty good on the south end of the lake. I know that the south end is fishing better.. I guess I am just too stupid to just go there and get it over with.

 

Overall the fishing is still less than stellar. There are still a good number of nice fish being caught. Is everyone catching them? NO..

We have a big batch of winter Texans here that fish every day the weather is nice.. And some that ain't.. And all of them are telling me the same thing. Some days are diamonds, some days are stone..

And as is usual this time of year, I think a lot of it has to do with timing.. You gotta be at the right place at the right time, and if you are you can one of them crazy thirty minutes when the fish really put the feed bag on.

I myself have not run into any of that kind of shit here lately.. But I know a few folks that have.

 

Crankbaits, C-rigs, and shakey heads are still about as good as it gets. Next time I go out I am going to rig up two or three dropshot rigs and fish them exclusively.. (Least that is what I say now..) And maybe a jerkbait..

I have proved to myself too many times that it catches fish when other presentations won't..

I just wish I didn't hate throwing it so much..

 

The crappie went nuts yesterday I heard, as several folks I talked to said they caught em good, and one fellow said he could only get twenty in a five gallon bucket.. That might not sound like bigguns.. But believe me it is.. You try it..

Catfish have also been good with a few giants caught on jugs, and good numbers of eaters on rod and reel on stink bait..

Of course those white bass are crazy. You can possibly run into them anywhere. And if you are cranking, you are going to catch some.. Sometimes you just gotta move to get away from em..

 

The first Bass Champs tournament is only about 38 days away, and we are seeing a few folks down here looking around doing some pre-pre fishing.. A few said they caught a few.. But they ain't telling me much.

And I don't want to sound like a broken record, or a democrat, but if you need a new Mexican fishing license, call me and let me get it done in advance of your visit. It will make it easier on both of us..

And with the new system in place, we can sell you a license starting on any date you desire.. So don't procrastinate..

Christmas is only two weeks away, and I hear that the online sales have broken records again. No surprise..

But don't forget to support your local small businesses or before long none of us will be here.. Before long I reckon you will be able to sell gasoline on line with free home delivery.. There's your next million..

Busy folks don't have time to stop for gas.. And then getting all stinky.. Out in the cold.. Or heat.. While the kids are in the child seats throwing pieces of what ever that snack shit is you gave them all over the station wagon..

Maybe I better start on an app and look for an old jobber truck..

 

I am sure some of you are pre-occupied with watching the political circus going on in DC.. I got my fill of it after the Russia collusion and the Supreme court nominee debate..

I have never seen a more fucked up debacle than what is going on in Washington. I wonder after the Senate acquits Trump of this impeachment bullshit what the democrats will come up with next.

You can bet your ass they're already working on something.. They're heads are going to explode when he gets re-elected..

And as good as things are in America, just think how much better things could be if they helped push the wagon instead of laying land mines in front of it..

Them are some fucked up people.. And they are pissed that some outsider has come along and changed the way they have had it for years..

Why do we have term limits on the president, but not the rest of the four hundred and whatever?

 

Of all of this shit, the one thing I don't understand is that they hate the idea of putting America first..

Ain't you an American? Don't you like America? (tongue in cheek) Wouldn't you like to see the fruits of American ingenuity and our unstoppable work ethic do more good for us?

I'm fine with charity.. But leave the charity to the individual..

We're borrowing trillions.. And handing out money like candy on halloween.. What horseshit..

Maybe I answered my own question.. I don't think they like America..

And they are sure they can morph it into something better.. By giving away more to those that won't work for it..

Piss off..

I made a reference to pussies earlier on.. And that is basically what a lot of our country has become. Freakin bunch of titty-babies..

Sucking Mama and Daddy dry.. And then moving up the ladder to government teats as they mature into uneducated, unmotivated, undedicated miscreants.

It's too hard.. I don't like to work.. I don't want to go to work everyday.. My boss sucks.. My co-workers suck..

Maybe YOU suck.. Pull your head out of your ass.

Nobody said life was easy.. It wasn't for me. It wasn't for my parents.. Or theirs..

But in the American tradition, we busted and are still busting our asses every day to make life and America better every day.

And you can be sure of one thing.. If you don't want to help push the wagon, we are going to run you over with it..

So pull your panties up and go to work! You pussies.. And maybe you can graduate to pansy before too long..

 

I feel better now..

Merry Christmas folks and come by and see us!

December 2, 2019: Thanksgiving has come and gone, and like usual, I am looking for my awl to poke another hole in my belt.. I just took a little spoon of everything.. Except that kale and brussel sprouts salad..

That shit ought to be outlawed when it was taking up space on the table that could have been occupied by another bowl of dressing.. My vegan niece says it is good.. Whatever..

Plates with sideboards..

That's one table of two.. Thank you Lord for the bounty..

Hope you and yours enjoyed similar gorging.. I think the fridge was as full after the meal as it was before..

 

Meanwhile back at the ranch.. Fishing was and is pretty good if you are fishing in the right place at the right time. If you follow some of the guides facebook pages you can see that some really nice fish have been caught.

One of my neighbors had a banner morning last week as his first two casts of the morning produced a 10-7 and a 11-6.. Back to back..

It still happens folks.. Maybe not as often as it used to.. But there are still a lot of good fish out there..

Here is Joe Standerfer's two whoppers..

Both of these fish came from the same ridge down by the dam.. There's a shock.. I've said a thousand that those community holes are community holes for a reason..

I can't tell you how many fish have been caught lately on the Spro 70 series crankbaits. They're a little pricey.. But they do catch fish. Tie one on some 12 or 14 pound line and start chunking..

The dam is not the only place that has turned out some really nice fish lately. Fishing out some long points in twentyish feet of water and tickling the rock is the key to getting bit. When you feel the bottom slow down a bit and tickle it along. A lot of these fish just load up on it, and a lot of them are just choking it I hear..

And all the pics of the bigger fish really look like they swallowed a three pound tilapia. True Rosies..

A crankbait is not the only bait that will catch fish. Several anglers I have talked to are using a dropshot and shakey head with pretty good success.. Everything from a super fluke to a trick worm will get the job done.

Of course we have sold a little bit of everything the last couple of weeks..

The weekend before Thanksgiving, San Antonio Bass Club was down here, and they caught the heck out of fish.. Not everybody caught monsters, but the top three were Chris Eyehorn with six fish (two days) for 35.47. In second was Richard Drake with five for 17.87, and in third was Leonard Gonzales with six for 17.57.

Big bass was a ten pounder I hear. I did not get a pic.. There was also a nine caught as well if memory serves..

Most of the fish came from Tigers south.. And boy the water looks good down there.. I gotta get out there and get me some. I have not gotten the boat wet in at least ten days, and this shit has got to stop.

But I also have to get off them crappie.. I must be getting old. But it is too much fun.. And ain't bad on the plate either.. And while I am on the subject, yes we are still catching them good on the brush piles..

The lake level has been stable for the last month.. Maybe up a few inches.

But that means the state park ramp is still in use.. And the Old Veleno bridge is still in the danger zone and still under water.

The county ramp is fine but still flatter that a coat of paint.. If you are by yourself it is likely that you will get your feet wet.

Other than that just run the river channel coming and going and you shouldn't have any trouble running the lake from top to bottom.

The white bass are still all over the lake, but it won't be long till they head to the river and backs of creeks do do their thing.. You can run into mess of them almost anywhere.. Or nowhere..

Overall the fishing is pretty decent.. Your results may vary, but a lot of beautiful fish have been caught lately.. And if you put in your time you just might catch a whopper..

Sometimes it is harder to find a big fish than it is to find a booger in a pot of chili.. But if you ain't lookin you ain't gonna find one..

So if you have already tagged out, you need to get your ass out of that cold country and get your ass down here..

There's only 23 days till Christmas.. So if you're gonna catch a whopper this year, your time is running out.

 

I saw on the Texas Fishing Forum this morning the annual discussion about when and where the next state record bass will come from. Speculation abounds..

I'm a firm believer that records are made to be broken..

But not that one..

Talk about finding a booger in a pot of chili...

Could it happen? Sure.. But it's not gonna..

If I was Barry StClair, I would get that fish repainted every five years or so..

Scoreboard..

There have only been two fish caught over fourteen pounds in the last three years.. And there is a hell of a lot of difference between fourteen or fifteen pounds and an eighteen..

Would I like to see one? Sure.. But I'll also buy a ticket to see a unicorn, a flying pig, and the Beto inauguration..

 

I have been busier than a beaver, but I see a little time to kill in the next week, so I am planning on fishing a bit as the weather warms this week.. Looks like a few great days to bust it.. For at least four hours or so..

Come see us if you can get a kitchen pass. I'll show you what has been working down here.. And probably some shit that ain't..

See you in the movies.. Or on the water..

November 20, 2019: Vacillation.. That's a good word that describes November weather.. Or maybe Bi-Polar..

Or in football terms it could be a fifty yard field goal attempt that hits both uprights. And goes through.. Or doesn't..

You just don't know what is coming down the pike..

And if you think you can trust wind forecasts around here.. Forget it..

It's the time of year that you can pretty much count on two fronts blowing in in any seven day period. Some might be mild.. Some are going to be motherfuckers..

But if you can get in on that warming trend in between the northern blasts, you can find you some of the best fishing weather in the US this time of year..

And that is why there are still a good number of folks who winter here. Not all of them fish.. But most of them do..

Of course I am bitching about cold and winter as I sit here typing, wearing short pants and a T-shirt.. But I assure you it is only temporary..

 

We had a few scattered showers around the last couple of weeks, and the valley got a little more than we did.. As is typical.. And water releases at present are low, so we have just hovered around 265.50. But that's about a foot lower than we were a month ago.

But the last three weeks has just been vacillation.. An inch up or down..

And for the time being, the State Park ramp is still in operation.

And while we are talking about ramps, the county ramp is fine but a little flat.. We'll be launching there for a long time..

And while we are on access, we'll address the old Veleno bridge.. It is still not visible, but like the Loch Ness Monster, it is still there.. Lurking just under the surface. Waiting to eat your lower unit..

Skirt the west side coming and going out of the Veleno.. If you don't know, ASK!!

Fishing above the Salado is a risky proposition, if you don't truly know the river. There are several mud/sand bars up there that will glue you to the bottom. So I suggest you fish south of there. As I am doing out of necessity..

I know every rock and tree up the river.. And I long for the day when I might once again fish the backs of no name creeks and arroyos, regardless of howling winds and crowds of fishermen on the main lake..

But now ain't the time boys..

So with all that being said, most folks are focusing on rocky banks and ledges, and honestly, there have been fish caught out of shallow water and deep. The common denominator is bait of course..

But there is so much food in the water for the bass it can be hard to compete with. When you're chunking something that ain't breathing..

TPWD has been down here this week conducting their every other year fall shocking survey. And after talking with them yesterday they pretty much confirmed what we have been seeing. Lots of shad.. And a good number of small bass from five to seven inches long.

No doubt these fish are from summer spawns that we were talking about back in June or July.. Call me crazy but this happens every year.. And with all the food in the water I would not be surprised if they were not even a bit younger.

A thirty day old bass is two to two and a half inches long, if fed properly.. So you do the math..

And I guarantee you that these adult Falcon bass are building eggs right now. And for all I know, they could be spawning in numbers by the end of December.. Seen it too many times to dismiss the possibility..

Time will tell..

Of course this year, like the last couple, the lake is doubtfully going to have much in the way of dense cover for the fish to hide in. Barring an influx of water from some unknown source.. But I don't see it this late in the year..

Man made shallow cover and deeper brush piles are about the only havens for small fish. Of course the large fish also inhabit these sites.. And often two fish become one.. And I ain't talking about marriage or nesting bowls..

And if you are wondering, the shock boat brought up several fish in the five to seven pound range, but no monsters.. Keep in mind that shocking is only effective down to about six or eight feet..

 

Best baits lately are all over the board.

Heath caught this 10.14 on a Rage Craw..

Mike caught this 11 plus yesterday on a Senko in about fifteen feet.

And John Adami caught this 11.31 yesterday morning on a freakin' squarebill..

If you look at the bellies on some of the fish around here, you can see they are eating good. And I am sure they are building eggs for the coming spawn.. But I ain't cutting one of these open to find out for sure which it is.. But I am sure it is both..

All summer long these big fish have been rolling fat, and they are as healthy as I have ever seen them here.

And meaner than your ex..

 

If there was one bait I would not go out there without, it would be three.. A big lipped Spro.. A little lipped square bill in sexy shad or a shad or chartreuse pattern, and a soft plastic like a fluke, Ol Monster, or a senko.. Preferably in five to six inch in watermelon red.

Well that might be more than three.. But you must like fishing one of those or something similar..

Now don't get me wrong.. I am not bragging on how good or easy fishing is on Falcon right now.. It is not "Knock em out John" fashion just yet. A lot of folks have struggled to put a pattern together..

If I was visitin for a few days, I would spend all my time in sight of the dam, some time right up against it, some times a few hundred yards off it, fishing the ups and downs and ridges and humps and bumps. If I was looking for a huge fish..

If I was looking to get bit a bit more often I would target shallow rock and points.. And cover water.. Tigers is a great place to do this.

 

Thanksgiving is only a week away, and this time of year can get a little complicated. With all the societal expectations of the holiday and the family gatherings and the Black Friday sales it is easy to get a little overwhelmed.

So much so that we tend to forget the meaning of the day itself. A time to reflect on all the things we have to be thankful for..

Surely things are not perfect for many of us.. But you don't have to look too far to see someone else less fortunate than you.. Keep that in mind this holiday season and be thankful for what you DO have..

We will have our annual family gathering at the ranch on Thanksgiving day, and this year we will not be having a record crowd. Not all of the younguns can make it this year, but we will still have about thirty noisy Bendele's in one room.. Earplugs ain't just for shootin..

This time of year I sure do miss my Dad, more than usual.. He loved the holidays and having the whole family together in one place was a hard thing to accomplish. Guess that's why he liked it so much. I can't believe it has been nine years since his passing.

Certainly not by my choosing, I guess I have been passed the torch as the old man in our Bendele clan. And as far as wisdom and compassion I am a long way short of achieving the stature my Daddy had.

I sure miss you Pops..

And I wish everyone on the planet could have the relationship with their parents that I have had.

I'm the luckiest man on earth.

So I say to all of you to overlook whatever differences you might have with your family, while you still can..

Ain't nothing on this earth permanent.. Specially you and me..

I hope you get to spend some time with you loved ones this year. And keep in mind those that are serving our country that will not be with family as they are keeping us safe in all corners of the world.

And thank God you were born in the greatest country ever conceived on God's Green Earth.

God Bless you and yours! And come see Me and Mine when you get a chance!

November 13, 2019: Some of the coldest air in history has invaded south Texas.. Well on this date anyway..

And I am going to have to go with with my gut, and say that this shit sucks..

Yesterday we had drizzly rain all day, sleet in the am, a north wind that would blow an egg back up a ducks ass, and a high temperature that reached a scorching 44 or so by mid afternoon. Our "normal" high is in the high seventies or low eighties..

Yep. The bullshit alarm was going off all day.. And it ain't gonna get much better today.

I went down to the ramp at about ten O'clock yesterday morning and it appears that everybody else around here thought it was bullshit as well.. Cause there was not one truck at the ramp..

Cain't say that I blame em.. This shit ain't good for business.. Least not ours..

 

What we do have on days like these, is a lot of folks walking around in the store.. Looking at their feet, and pissing and moaning about the weather.. Just like me..

Misery loves company..

 

Last weekend we had three small bass clubs in town, and overall the fishing was pretty decent.. On my last report, I had said that the fishing was good.. Only to have folks that shortly after that say it was tough.. Seems that the fronts surely affect the fish for a couple of days..

And these Falcon fish are no admirers of cold fronts.

There were several nice fish caught last weekend in club action, with several eights and sevens reported. I did not hear of a DD over the weekend.

I will have to say that crankbaits are still the deal around here, and two colors remain at the top of the list. The Spro in Citrus Shad, and the SK 6XD in Blue Back Chartreuse.

I had decent luck with the Spro last Thursday as well.. Cranking sloping points and sides of long points..

I have been throwing a squarebill a lot, but it seems that I catch better fish on the bigger bait.. Not as many I'll have to admit.. But better quality..

And I am not afraid to throw the big-billed baits in two foot of water either.. Raking up the bottom has been working for me..

Matter of fact I have been called a bottom raker before.. Stirring up some shit.. On occasion..

Water temps were in the middle seventies last week, before this front blew in. And honestly, fishing was decent and the cooling water has started to move the bait back in the creeks a bit. Some places the shad are really thick up on the rock, and off the edges of creek channels they will nearly black out your screen in spots..

Of course there is so much crap on my screen that I am not sure what all of it is.. This lake is loaded with so many species of fish that I can't make them all out..

On several recent trips, I have run into schools of five to six inch bass, chasing bait on top of the water.. And I have heard the same from several other folks. Good to see and hear. I wish we could submerge some brush and give them a place to grow up with a little protection.

But it is awful late to catch some real water this year..

Another bait that is catching some fish is a shakey head fished down steep banks or ledges.. You don't need to put a giant bait on there either.. Stop by and I'll show you a few local favorites..

If I had to guess I'd say that this morning the water temps are in the upper sixties, and that is a hell of a drop in the last couple of weeks, and twenty degrees in the last month. Highly unusual, and odds are that it will warm up some in the next few days.

This global warming shit is hard to figure out.. And I am sure the fish are as confused as we are.. I don't think they have the internet, and Al Gore has probably not been able to explain to them what is going on..

The crappie are still fairly easy to catch in the brush piles, but not as easy as they were before these fronts started to blow in. I'm not much of a crappie fisherman, and I don't know what they do when it gets cold.. But I imagine they head out a bit deeper and get a little pickier..

I cleaned a few a couple of weeks ago and I observed that they are just starting to do some egg building. I think we will see a few three pounders this spring when they are full of eggs. There are some whoppers out there..

White bass can be anywhere, and the catfish are everywhere.. Midlake the birds will tell you where the whites are.. Especially on the warm days.

The south end of the lake is still fishing best.. And water clarity is still best down south as well.

The lake level has not changed in the last week or so.. We're still just wavering around 265.30..

 

I know a lot of you are more interested in sitting in a deer blind than fishing this time of year, and this is certainly the weather for it. I am probably going to do a bit more of it this weekend..

My brother and his kids made sausage last weekend, so the pressure is off.. An old eight pointer bit the dust so I don't have to whack anything and honestly these days I enjoy watching as much as anything. And being that deer meat seems to give me the gout in under thirty minutes, it's just not the same..

Of course if the right deer shows up all bets are off..

I'll try to get back to the computer before to long, but projects a plenty I got going on..

We'll see you after you get that big buck, if not before..

And come see us if you get a chance.. Meanwhile I'll be whackin em till you get here..

P.S. Only 16 days till Thanksgiving!!

What?

November 5, 2019: Halloween has come and gone, Turkey month is well underway, and before you know it Jingle Bells will be playing on every commercial and bumper slot on radio and TV.

So you better start thinking about which new fishin' pole you want for Christmas.. It'll be here quicker than a cat can lick his ass..

I will have to say that we have had some of the mostest plesantest weather one could imagine the last few days. Ideal fishing weather, or weather fit for most any outdoor activity.

And today is going to be another one with near perfect conditions.

And in reaction to the cooling water, it sounds like the fish are enjoying the change as well, and they have been really active the last few days according to those I talked to yesterday afternoon.

I have been holed up at the ranch for the last few days, pursuing other outdoor activities.

But here's what I heard:

Numbers of fish have greatly improved with a lot of fish in the two to five pound range being brought to the boat. I don't think anybody is doing anything really different than they were, it just sounds like the fish are a lot more active.

Lots of fish found on rocky points and rocky break lines in water from four to fifteen feet deep. We are still fishing the drop offs and ledges.. How many times have I said that.

Falcon fish love to utilize cover, as most all bass do, but we don't really have any cover in the lake to speak of, except for man-made brush piles and some inventions of PVC and plastic that look like a T-Rex puked up or shit out a giant Tarantula..

In the shallows we do have some hardwoods, and in the very shallow there can be found some skinny stickups that I would not call a hardwood.. With diameters of less than one inch.

But these are way back on flats that are really pretty shallow.. And they ain't everywhere.. But if you get into some of these on muddy flats, it is a great place to throw a spinnerbait. Run that baby right thru the trees and clank it off the wood when possible. Hearing more and more about the spinnerbait bite..

I probably don't have to tell you this, but any transition line you can see on the bank.. Where the rock turns to dirt.. Where chunk rock turns to gravel.. Where a stickup line turns to barren bottom..

All these places need to be given special attention with a spinnerbait or a squarebill when you are going past.

That is some of my favoritest places to chunk a big spinnerbait. And do hang onto your rod.. These fish have been known to waylay that thing and mangle your shit all up.. It happens..

 

If you want to stay offshore a bit, it is a good idea to throw a soft plastic.. On a Texas rig or a shakey head or a C-rig in about ten feet of water.. Still concentrating on the long points and the ledges out a bit from the shore.

If you have never heard of the color that Zoom makes called "Plum", you might want to give it a go..

Also, a mid to deep diving crankbait.. Say eight to twelve feet.. Scratching the bottom.. Creating a ruckus down there.. Ain't a bad choice either..

5 or 6XD.. Spro or Bomber big billed crankbait.. All good stuff..

The south end of the lake is still fishing better than the top. Water clarity is still a lot better from marker eight south..

As of yesterday they were still using the concrete ramp at the state park, but it has to be getting marginal.. Not optimal.. But I hear launching off the bank at the end of the canal is no problem.

The county ramp is still fine here in the Veleno.. And will continue to be so for a long time.. Although it is on the flat side and if you are launching by yourself you are probably going to get your feet wet..

The old Veleno bridge is still about a foot under the water.. It is in the kill zone.. I am about to put the big orange marker back on it.. But I still cannot see the top rail of the bridge.. Water got murky in the Veleno last week..

Working on it..

 

The crappie are still good in the brushpiles, but maybe not stacked up on some of them like they were a few weeks back. But you can still catch more of them than you want to clean on most outings.

 

Catfish are good.. A curled on shad is as good a bait as you can come by. But shrimp and stink bait is a sure attraction for the smaller fish.

You can run into a school of white bass at any time at any place.. And if you are running the lake keep you eyes open for seagulls pounding the water. They are a good indication that a school of fish have a bunch of bait pushed to the surface.. And you can catch them every cast when you run into them.

All in all, it is a good time to be fishing on Falcon..

 

One warning for sure this time of year.. Be aware of the forecast. If you know that a front is blowing in, keep your ass within a few minutes of the boat ramp.. More than one fisherman got caught with their panties down out there, and there have been a lot of horror stories from folks trying to make it back to the ramp in the north wind..

So err on the safe side.. But like I said.. It is a great time to be fishing on Falcon.

 

Many of us that fish also hunt, and it is certainly that time of year.. And opening weekend of the general deer season here in Texas commenced last weekend.. And for most of the state we had a bit of cool weather to go along with it.

I had my overalls on Saturday and Sunday morning.. Of course I think 60° is cold..

In our country, between Devine and Yancey, Texas, there were deer everywhere.. And while no lovemaking was even being considered, the bucks were certainly checking on inventory for future reference.

And I have no idea why, but I passed up three bucks that a few years ago I wouldn't even have had to put the binoc's on. I woulda just shot em..

I figure I am looking for something that just don't exist in our country.. But it could, dammit. And I guess that is why I love to sit..

I did get my bloodlust satisfied though, as I killed three turkeys on opening morning. I did not see the old Tom that I am looking for.. But I seen a bunch of his nephews and sons.. Plus three dozen hens and a flock of Jakes..

Ten years ago we would see a few turkeys on occasion.. Those things have made a comeback in our country to the point where they are actually a pain in the ass..

And I have noticed that they can eat up your corn.. In a hurry.. I think they are half Hoover and half IBM.. A cross between a typewriter and a vacuum cleaner..

I saved a tag for the old longbeard.. But I could have shot a fourth as these stupid bastards did not realize they were under attack.

And yes the old 222 blew their heads off.. I'm having a love affair with that gun right now..

I was gonna post a pic, but this site is know for its civility and class, and I don't want to jeopardize my standing..

 

Why the hell do we do this time change shit? Especially in the middle of opening weekend? What time do I get in the blind.. What time should the feeders go off.. How bout tomorrow?

As of yesterday I think I have it all figured out, and the timers set properly. And I might not have to watch the stars for an hour the next time I go out..

I get up early every day.. But safe light running the boat down the lake is a different time than safe light to whack a nanny..

Told you I wadn't good at math..

 

One last thought for now.. I have been hearing of all the new fishing circuits and combos of circuits and it has also become kinda mind boggling..

MLF. FLW.. MLFLW.. And newly announced National Professional Fishing League.. (NPFL)

I think I'm gonna start a new fishing league.. Well maybe a new kinda guide service..

I'm gonna call it MILFW..

Moms I'd Like to Fish With..

Of course given the name there will be an application and approval system.. I'll let you know where to send pics..

I mean applications..

 

Well if you ain't huntin you ought to be fishin.. And while the rest of the country is winterizing their rigs, we're tuning ours up..

Come see us if you get the chance.. And we'll see you on the water!

October 29, 2019: We're burning calendar pages at an alarming rate, and Halloween is only two days away.. Where this month went I have no idea. I was so looking to fishing a lot in October because it is my favorite month of the year to fish.

Yes, October has gone Andy Dufresne on us, and vanished like a fart in the wind..

I guess getting older makes you realize that there are only so many sunrises you are going to see..

I'm gonna be 64 next month, and I gotta admit. If I ain't in the fourth quarter, it is certainly late in the third..

It has cooled off considerably around here, and the last week has been very pleasant, if not a bit cool when you are scooting across the water.

Long britches are a must in the AM.. And I keep a full wardrobe in the boat this time of year.. So if you see an old fat man wearing tighty whities out on a boat, don't be alarmed.. It will be short lived.. It is only me changing clothes..

Last weekend we had the Texas Classic Bass Club in town, and most of them spent an extra day or two down here in Zapata..

Friday was a wind out, so most of them wondered thru town aimlessly waiting on the wind to quit.. But it did not till Saturday morning. Thanks to all of you who came and spent a few dollars and made my day go by a little faster..

(Wadn't I just bitching about that?)

In any case, on Saturday, the leader had right at 25 pounds for five fish. There were several others kinda close and a bunch with poundage in the teens. I have not heard what the final weights were, but they had another fine day on Sunday to wrap up their contest..

And being the "Leader" is no longer in town, I don't think he will get too upset that I tell you he and his partner caught most all of their fish on a 5 & 6XD in Powder Blueback.. Whooda thunk it..

That bait has caught more fish than the Gordon's Fisherman..

I appears that the majority of the fish are out in about 10-12 feet of water, and that has been a common thread in a lot of stories I have been hearing..

You can certainly throw a variety of baits to catch em. A C-rig is still catching some fish and it sounds like a fluke (big or little) is still a good choice.

Texas rigging or a shakey head in the brushpiles will also get you bit.

But all in all you need to focus on drop offs or ledges in the before mentioned 10-12 feet of water.

I know for a fact that there have been some fish coming off the rip-rap on the dam. And throwing a crankbait in an appropriate size will get you bit. There have been fish right on the rock and fish out to fifteen feet deep along there..

That is why you see the locals trolling up and down the dam all the time. It works.. Unfortunately most of those fish will not be caught again..

The Veleno has been putting out a few nice fish, but in the last few days it has really gotten off color. Maybe the high winds from several of the last fronts has stirred the water some.

Water clarity gets a whole lot better as you pass marker ten, and it really looks good about marker seven and points south. The Tigers are Falcon Green.. Beautiful..

The crappie are still going pretty good, but they too are affected by the north wind and it takes a day or two for them to re-populate, or maybe a better choice of words would be to "eat" around the brushpiles.

I went out for a couple of hours on Sunday, and threw a crankbait on all my favorite points here in the Veleno. And it was not good.. I don't know why I ever throw a deep diving crankbait.. I hate that shit..

Anyway, I ran down the lake and ended up in the Tigers and picked up the crappie pole.. They were not lights out, but I did catch a few nice ones and one really giant son of a bitch.. I shoulda weighed em.. But I didn't want to do the paperwork..

Some of these crappie are big as a saddle blanket..

A few more Winter Texans roll into town every week, and this week has been no different. The RV parks are still just a shadow of what they once were down here, but you can see some lights on after dark for a change..

And golf carts are certainly the preferred mode of transportation.

 

In other news, it looks like the Texas Association of Bass Clubs will be holding their 2020 state tournament here next year. It is slated for October 10th and 11th.. I know that is a year away, but the early bird gets the worm. Some of the motels in Zapata might even have a 2020 calendar, so you might want to get your reservation penciled in..

Thanks to TABC for heading back our way! It'll be here before you know it!

 

Well deer season starts this weekend for real in Texas. And I plan on joining about another half million or so Texans that will be in the blind on Saturday morning.

Well we won't all be in the same blind.. Least I hope not..

We have deer running all over the place, and I swear that every doe I have seen has twins this year.. We are feeding year around and I have never seen so many critters.

It is always fun to "sit" the first morning and see what the "local" bucks look like. I am sure they are still buddied up, and things will be friendly for another month or so in our neck of the woods.. But about the first week in December things get a little more serious..

Breaking from the norm, I did not put out a single trail cam this year. So it will be an interesting sit on Saturday morning.. I'm pumped up..

What I have seen is this one Gobbler that is the lone survivor of a group of four from two years ago.. The other three were very tasty.. They all had nine inch plus beards two years ago..

This SOB has a Windsor tied in his beard to keep from tripping over it.. So he is my mission for opening weekend..

I acquired another .222 and it is a shootin' SOB.. And I'm gonna blow his head off..

Five at a hunnert.. One Flier..

Of course some dumb ass 160 inch ten pointer could wonder out.. But it ain't happened in forty years so I'm not gonna jump to any conclusions..

We have another front rolling in tomorrow afternoon, and like the last two they are giving us a 60-70 percent chance of rain.. Out of the last two big rain events we have gotten a total of .1" Yeah.. One tenth..

It's drier than Betty Crocker flour around here, and we need a rain.

 

The lake has held about steady, give or take an inch or so the last ten days. State Park ramp was still open yesterday. But it is getting ugly..

Still do not have a marker on the end of the Veleno bridge.. Water too dirty to see the top of bridge rails..

 

Well if you get that biggun on the ground send me some pics..

And if you catch a biggun down here I'll show everybody your pics..

We'll see you on the water.. Or at the taxidermist...

October 19, 2019: It's been a week of "Introduction to Winter" around here..

No, No.. It's not been that cold.. But cool enough in the mornings to make you want some jeans or warm-ups on while screaming down the lake..

That cold air blast up the shorts will make the boys run and hide..

I have been on the lake four or five days this week, as the temps have cooled a bit and the wind has been a non-factor on the days I was out. We did have a front go thru on Wednesday, and we were supposed to get some rain as it invaded our area..

Not..

But in its wake it left behind some low humidity, highs in the 90 degree range, and just some perfect fishing conditions.

There have been a few folks in town this week, and their results have varied greatly. Some boats have reported thirty fish days, and some have reported ten.. Most in the middle.

Of the guides that I spoke to, their average catch numbers have been similar, with a few exceptions here and there.

Last weekend Uvalde Bass Club was in town, and their heavy fish both Saturday and Sunday was a seven something I hear.

The lake level is sitting at 265.68, and that is down a couple of inches this week. And that level is barely keeping the concrete ramp at the state park useable.. If we loose any more at all, it is going to get un useable, and we will be down to launching on the bank down at the end of the canal that leads to the ramp.

It's no issue with 4X4 and can be done with two wheel drive for many.. But it is a consideration..

Pray for rain..

Of course the old Veleno bridge is at hazard level right now.. So avoid it to the west.. If we lose a bit more water, I should be able to get a marker on the west end of it.. I'm watching it.. You better too..

The better fish are still out in water around twelve to fifteen feet deep, from most reports, and they are best caught on soft plastics and crankbaits capable of scraping the bottom at those depths.

Brush piles are certainly an attractant, and fishing around and near them is always a good idea. Finding sunken brush does not guarantee catching fish. Not all brushpiles have biting fish on them all the time.

But if you are on the right one at the right time, it can really pay off.. The general consensus is that the PM bite is better than the morning. But as we get away from this big moon period, the morning bite should improve.

I also need to mention that a shakey head or stand up jig with a Mag trick worm or a Ol Monster on it is a good weapon right now.. As is the drop shot if you are fishing some deeper ledges.

I hate throwing the drop shot but that sucker will catch em when it gets tough.. A trick worm in Junebug or Redbug will get er done..

Susan Reissig caught this 9-12 on a Junebug lizard yesterday.. The rest of the details are sketchy..

I had a buddy in town the last couple of days, and we fished till about 1:00 both days. And while we primarily were out to catch some crappie for his freezer, we did throw some crankbaits on some points and caught a bunch of white bass and a few largemouth mixed in.. Nothing to brag about but the white bass were the biggest I have run into lately..

I was out last Sunday and Monday, doing some scouting, and I tore the crappie a new ass.. And I released most of them.. But the last two days was a lot tougher than it was pre-front.

Instead of whacking them every drop, it was a few here and a few there.. But we managed to keep about twenty nice ones each day, while throwing back a bunch of smaller but keeper sized fish.

We decided to fry up a batch on Saturday afternoon, and damn if the smell of frying fish didn't attract a crowd on the patio.. And we ended up eating twenty something crappie and three big ass perch..

I love crappie, but them whole fried perch is hard to beat.. You gotta watch them little bones, but like the old saying goes, "The closer the bone, the sweeter the meat.."

I know that saying has several connotations, but I'll leave it to your imagination to see where the saying could also be applicable..

The catfish have also been friendly and jugliners and rod and reel fishermen both have had good success. Big dead shad curled on a hook will work for either application.

The old saying the catfish are "Fall Guys" is certainly true..

Find you a hardwood next to a creek channel and tie up.. Chunk your bait out on the edge and open a Big Red.. It'll probably get warm before you finish it..

 

Things are getting a bit busier around here, with a few more Winter Texans arriving each week. And with the cooling temperatures we are seeing a few more fishermen making their annual trip to Falcon.

There are no big tourneys scheduled till next year.

I know many of you will be heading into the woods the next few weeks, as deer season opens pretty quick. I am looking forward to sitting a bit myself.

I'm not sure why or where the saying comes from, but in our German/Alsatian community (La Coste/Castroville) the term "Sit" is often used for time in a deer blind.

"You gonna come over for supper this evening?"

"Naw, I'm gonna go sit.."

"You wanna go sit?"

I loved to take girlfriends to go sit...

Specially when the rut was on..

 

Don't forget if you need a Mexican fishing license to give us a call.. If you are having trouble getting one we can take care of it for you.. And send it to you electronically if you wish.. Or mail it to you or slap it in your hand when you walk in..

The weather and water is cooling off down here. Matter of fact we have lost about 10° of water temp in the last ten days. We're sitting at about 76 or 77..

The fish will be heading shallower and already are.. And that is right where I like em..

Holler if you need anything.. And we'll see you on the water!

October 8, 2019: You can always tell that October has rolled around when you start seeing more license plates that don't have TEXAS written across the top of em. At least in Zapata anyway..

And the first crop of winter Texans has started to arrive in the last two weeks.. And good timing too.. There is some serious cold headed south for folks in the north..

And I don't think a lot of folks that winter in SoTex are fans of it at all.. Cain't say I blame em.. I hate cold..

And while all the Texas weathermen are all excited about a real cold front crossing the Red, it is hard for me to share their enthusiasm.

I know what is coming..

It is October 8.. And at this time last year we were 8.74 feet higher (Water level.. Weed is still illegal in Texas) than we are now.. And it is getting pretty late in the year for us to catch any meaningful amount of water. I ain't saying it can't happen, but the odds are not good.

We are sitting at 266.11, and this is the lowest we have gone into fall since 2013. Yeah we have been lower a time or two, but by now we have usually recovered some, and sometimes a good bit.

To date this year, we still have not had 10 inches of rain here at FLT. Last year at this time we had received 26.70, and the year before we got 18.9..

So it is easy to see the stark difference in the last couple. And the last two years we had awesome rains between us and Amistad.. No so this go round.

 

That being said, we have seen the lake much lower, and a lot of the old salts around here have a lot of places to fish from the old days.. If we can remember where the hell they were..

I might forget to take out the trash. But I ain't never forgot a honey hole..

Despite of the low water and the warm water temps, fishing has remained pretty damn good around here.

Last weekend in the San Antonio Metro tournament, here were a shit load of nice fish caught, and some really impressive weights to win the individual part of the contest.

These are six fish totals in the individual Tournament of Champions.

Kenny Witek put a whippin on the field with a stringer that went 34.99.. My limited math skills have deduced that that is a 5.83 pound average.

In second was Richard Drake with 27.66, and in third was Barry Myers with 26.67.

There were also a good number of mid twenty pound sacks as well.

There were several nine pound fish weighed in, but none over ten. Eights and sevens had a good representation as well..

Most of the better fish came from the south end of the lake, and ledges and brushpiles produced most of them.

Nothing has changed in the last two months when it comes to catching fish on Falcon.

There might be a few more fish showing up shallow, but it has been slow to happen. While the days have gotten shorter, the water has not cooled much to this point. High eighties are still the norm.

But with the approaching cool front this week, it is likely that we will see a drop of some proportion in the next ten days..

 

October has always been my favorite month for numbers of fish on Falcon. Although the last two years have not been particularly good to me personally. Deteriorating fishing skills and less time on the water doesn't help any either.

It sucks getting old.

Often when the water temps take a nose dive it signals the fish to put on the feedbag cause winter is coming. And I know that will be happening soon. Soon as the water temp drops.. Which should have already happened but it ain't just yet.

Schooling fish become a bit more active and it won't be unusual to see a bunch of slashers and crashers on the surface tearing the shad a new asshole..

An often overlooked bait I like in the fall, especially when the water is down and the cover is basically nonexistent, is a jerk bait. I know there are a bunch of different ones out there but it is hard to beat the old Smithwick Rogue.. As long as it has some chrome and orange on it. I like the blue back.

It's a shallow water bait of course.. Also a weightless super fluke can tear em a new ass as well. And is also good around the hardwoods..

As the water drops into the seventies you will find fish starting to collect around secondary points, as they make their way back into the creeks following the bait..

But realistically I might be full of shit on that point.. The freaking bait is everywhere..

It is not unusual to see clouds of fish on your machine.. Especially on the channel drops and out on the main lake near the river..

What are all of these fish? Somebody with better skills on their electronics will have to tell you.. But it is incredible the amount of fish in the water..

 

Till the water cools, I still think that the deep bite will be best. Big Texas rigged plastics in the brushpiles, and C-rigs and big deep divers on the rocks where there is no brush are your best bet. Hump tops and edges of ledges.. SOS..

The top of the lake is clearing up some, with steady but slow water coming down the river. Also the vegetation on the banks is down to the water in places where there is sand and dirt, and the water has risen into a lot of it.. And that helps with less mud stirred up when the wind blows.

Reports of fish closer to Zapata have been on the rise.

In any case I think we'll be catching a lot of fish in the next month.. Time will tell.

 

Do you ever watch TV?

I know I watch too much of it.. And I know that I watch too much because I am constantly changing channels.

Why? Because what is on sucks.. And when you change channels it's not likely to get any better..

But hope springs eternal..

I keep thinking that I will see some show that does not have people with rotting flesh trying to kill and eat each other.. For the life of me I cannot figure what people see in that shit..

Our society is really fucked up..

And thank God that those people clinging to life on that Island get rescued.. That has to be the most fucked up show in history.. Well maybe with the exception of Big Brothers House of Clamidia..

You might not pay attention to a lot of stuff that is obvious to me.. But I'll admit that my thought processes are a bit out of the ordinary.

A while back I told you that this is the decade of the woman.. And if you watch much TV you will certainly have to agree that it's true.

Women are finally getting their due.. Most every drama, ie: cop show, fire show, detective show, doctor show, federal law enforcement show.. I think that's all the kinds of shows there are..

Not counting all the shows headed up by the freak squad of America..

They are all now headed up by women bosses and chicks that can kick the ass of most any pumped up ex-con around..

Seen any commercials while you are watching TV? Any for cars? Yep women doing all the driving while their male counterpart sits in the passenger seat adjusting the scrungie on his man bun..

Don't bother sending him in for a sperm count..

How bout the commercial with the couple getting a quickie while going thru the drive thru car wash.. Yep that stud, after nailing it in the back seat between the soap and rinse cycle, climbs into the seat of domestication.

Bet he's a terror with the vacuum..

Leave It To Beaver..

 

Of course Mcgonagay is still doing the Mercury commercials..

 

There are also a few new synonyms that you need to know about and commit to memory.

Subaru is the same thing as saying love..

And now Hyundai = Hope..

Damn.. Obamma could have made a campaign slogan with car names..

 

Another of my favorites.. Did you know that you can now pick up stuff at a store the same day you buy it? No extra charge!

Shit you gotta be kidding me.. Why didn't' they think of that years ago?

 

Do you watch football? I was trying but it looks like the Cowboys are already in flameout and they are going to be about as good as they were the last few years..

I guess money cain't fix everything..

But I do like the inclusiveness that they are bringing to the game.. I took last year off from watching any at all, due to the disrespect shown by a shit-ton of players..

And I guess I missed it as I did not realize that they have allowed the homeless from San Francisco to start living on the sidelines.. And the homeless are evidently very generous as well, as every time someone gets hurt, they let them come into their blue tent tarp house to recover and maybe share a bowl or two..

That looks pitiful.. A multi-billion business with a FEMA house on the sidelines..

 

Ever watch any political shows on TV.. Now there is a way to waste an evening..

One of my favorite quotes used recently is : "Lack of Candor."

The pussies can't even come out and call the Motherfuckers a liar. They say he showed a lack of candor..

I guess there are a lot of ways to say the same thing.. But I would hate it if they damaged someone's psyche.. PC is it's own religion.. It's ridiculous..

 

But there is a lot to be said about interpretation in today's politically charged climate.. And we probably need to take a step back and think and examine what we heard and what we are thinking of saying..

Even when you are not expecting to run into a situation that could lead to a sticky wicket..

The other day I went to the coast to go fishing, and I took a buddy along.. And of course I had to make a motel reservation for the stay.

I told the reservation person (not sure of the gender it preferred) that I needed a room with two queens in it..

I am not sure he/she was thinking the same thing as me..

He told me I had to bring my own but maybe he and a friend could come over..

WTF??

I guess I'm just too old school to play well with the rest of the boys and girls of today.

But I have learned a few things while I have been around.

I'm sure some folks say that you're so non accepting that you will feel the flames of hell!

Well you don't feel flames.. You feel heat.. You see flames..

I always thought that was an important distinction..

 

I have also found that there is no correlation between education and and intelligence..

Certainly both exist, but not necessarily in the same room.

 

I have found that anticipation can make up for a slower reaction time.. Something us olds need to take into consideration..

So if you think some asshole is going to take a swing at you, just throat punch that Motherfucker before things escalate..

That'll make his esophageal sphincter tighten up.. Don't worry.. His man bun will save his skull when his head hits the ground..

 

I better get back to work. This rambling is getting a little long in the tooth.. Like me..

We're going to kick their ass this fall. You better be working on your kitchen passes..

I Subaru you man.. And I Hyundai you can get down here pretty soon..

October 2, 2019: Fall is in the air!

Well.. Not our air.. But some folks air.. And it is supposed to be in ours next week..

But before we get too giddy about this cooler air, lets remember what it leads to..

Cold air.. And last year we had front after front after front.. It Sucked!

Yall probably don't remember that.. But I do.. I hate cold..

I don't mind if it gets down in the eighties.. And even seventies are OK.. But if you gotta put on jeans to go fishing that just sucks..

So I guess we better enjoy this last weekend of warm before we have to break out the long johns and tip-ups..

 

It has been a little breezy the last few days, but we are supposed to be in a couple of day stretch of really nice fishing conditions, with winds at or under ten miles per hour.

I was out on Sunday and I can tell you that the wind was more than ten miles per hour.. And while I did not have a anemometer with me, I can tell you that in any kind of open water, with the spotlock on, water was coming over the nose of my 21 foot boat, every other wave..

And I had to ask myself the age old question.. "Why are we here?"

And this morning, with the wind almost a no show, I ask myself the same question.. "Why am I here?"

It certainly seems that I have my cycle screwed up..

We did catch a few fish on Sunday, but it was more of a survivalist type of fishing.. And we caught enough crappie to stink up the pan, so it was not a lost cause..

 

There have been damn few fishermen in town this week.. And I mean damn few.. Two boats at the ramp yesterday when I went down.. Mid morning..

So they did not get beat on too bad this week. There are more boats putting in at the state park than on this end as of lake, and with good reason.. The better fishing is still south, and the trip from county to the dam has been pretty hard on the twins.. Top or bottom depending on your sex..

And you guys who can't choose a side.. Well never mind..

 

The summer pattern is still in place, whether the calendar says it is fall or not.. Although this year the pattern has been a bit different during the warm period..

While there was some schooling up of fish on points and flats, it was not like typical years when it is a reliable pattern that one could pretty much depend on.

And while we went into early spring with a good amount of water in the sticks and bushes, it soon was sent out to sea and the fish were sent to the depths to hide in the only cover left. A few hardwoods, rock ledges, and man made brushpiles.

 

And I will have to say that in all the years I have fished Falcon, I have never seen so many man made woodpiles.

The Chief over at Beacon used to put out some in the eighties and nineties.. And into the new century.. Until his untimely demise..

And a few other folks would put out a few here and there..

But in the last two or three years there have been literally hundreds of brushpiles placed in the lake.. Mostly by guides, but quite a few by individuals..

And it has changed the fishing over the last few months.

And as I have said before, when all the cover that a lake has is hardwoods and rocky ledges.. Those brush piles are a magnet.

Of course if you put twenty feet of water in the lake, those brush piles will be much less effective.. Cause the whole lake will be a brushpile..

I can only hope..

We are quickly loosing our window for catching some water this year.. And I really don't see it happening.. I ain't saying it cain't .. Or it ain't.. But the year is getting long in the tooth, and what has already been a dry year, ain't looking any wetter just yet..

 

This weekend we will have the biggest tournament of the fall season here at Falcon, as the San Antonio Metro tournament will be in town..

There should be seventy five to ninety boats in town for this one.

Ingram bass club will also be here. So it will be fairly busy on the lake.

Weigh-ins will be at the county ramp, so if you are putting in there, expect some heavy traffic in the mornings and about two to three o'clock.. Saturday and Sunday..

I expect that most folks will be fishing the south end of the lake, and that should be no suprise. If you have been paying any attention at all.

And I am sure it will be a parking lot down in front of the dam. And in the Tigers..

Let's all be nice to one another..

The deep bite is still the quality bite, and I would imagine that most folks will be dragging Carolina rigs and chunking big ass deep divers to fish in the fifteen to twenty five foot range.

Ledges and of course ledges and humps with brush on them will produce the winning stringers I am sure..

Our water is still mid-eighties so PLEASE take care of your fish! Have a plan.. And prepare to carry around some big fish.. Even if you don't..

I'll keep you informed about results..

I gotta get outside and wrap my faucets..

See you at the weigh-in!

September 25, 2019: This just in!!

Summer has been extended in south Texas despite the calendar now saying it is fall..

We now return you to your not-regularly scheduled warm spell.

And while I will be the first one to bitch about it being cold, and a north wind.. I might even crack a smile the first time I walk out side and get a NHO..

But until then I reckon we'll have to stick to sunscreen and floppy hats.. We're supposed to be around a hundie for the next five days..

I can always tell fall is approaching by seeing who is coming thru the front door.. And this week we have greeted a few of our returning snowbirds/Winter Texans.

And while it may be a bit early to avoid the northern cold, I promise you it will not be long till we are saying, "Did you see how cold it was this morning in Minot?"

Actually I could give a shit about how cold it is in Minot.. That's why I live here.. Cause I Have seen how cold it gets in Minot..

Not much of a fishing report as of yet, is it..

I was at the ranch last weekend anticipating shooting some doves.. And while I greatly enjoyed the shade of a mesquite tree, a cold adult beverage, and a nice breeze.. The doves, like Doc Holiday, sought their entertainment elsewhere..

Good damn thing for them too, cause I'm their Huckleberry.

 

I did however, attend my 45th high school class reunion.. But I was disappointed to see so many old folks there.. I hadn't been to one since the tenth I think..

They always seem to have it the opening week of Dove Season.. Easy choice for me..

No Offence meant.. (Granny and Lone Watie.. Josey Wales..)

Hopefully none taken..

Not much of a fishing report so far..

I don't know why I am always sticking these movie and song quotes in these reports/BS sessions..

Oscar Wilde said, "Life imitates art far more that art imitates life"

Well there is something to ponder on.. But with the TV and Movie and music scene these days I'm starting to believe it is true..

Look at what you see on the streets and you might get my point..

And he said that in 1889..

That's why I like nature.. And critters.. I don't think they pay any attention to mankind in their daily rituals..

Eat, drink, sleep.. And make babies..

Or is that Democrats?

Hell I get confused easily these days..

This ain't been much of a fishing report as of yet..

The lake has come up slightly since I last wrote.. But I'm talking a few inches not feet. And being we are not talking about a porn movie, there is not a lot to get excited about..

We are sitting at 266.34. But odds are that we could drop a little or maintain level, as Amistad has slowed their releases to about 2/3 of what they were turning out.

But who knows what the release schedule will be. You can ask but I don't think there is a long term plan in place..

Of course some rain can make some sudden changes.. And of course we are all waiting on that..

So what does 266.34 mean.. Well it means that the Old Veleno bridge is about 20" under the water. Could you go screaming across it? Maybe, but I ain't.. And I suggest you don't either.. Use the westbound lanes coming and going..

The County Boat Ramp is two wide.. A bit flat but very serviceable.. Lots of parking..

The State Park ramp is fine in the center lane only.. The ditch is about three feet deep.. Keep your motor trimmed up for a bit till you get out ditch a bit..

But it is no sweat..

Venturing above the Salado I do not recommend, unless you really know your shit.. Cause you can hit some shit up there. And while toilet paper can help clean you pants and dry your eyes, it ain't gonna do much to fix your rig..

I'm just sayin..

The water on the top end of the lake is still off color, but it is not fishless.. I heard that some folks caught some fish out of the hardwoods across from the Veleno. I also heard some folks caught some fish out of the hardwoods on the main lake down across from Dolly Parton. Before the mouth of Blanco..

Throw a Plum based bait in those trees.. The Ol Monster or a Tilapia Z-Craw are good baits to start with. Like always, think shadows.. And don't get in a hurry.. That is some of my most favoritest water on the lake.. At this level anyway..

The exposed rock piles on the north end of the lake have some small fish on them, and early is certainly better than later.. There is not a lot of water around them, and after the sun gets up a bit they seem to move out to deeper water.

Of course you can hook a goodun most anywhere..

The Veleno proper also has some fish in it still.. Crankbaits on rocky ledges and points seem to be holding the most fish.. Don't get in a hurry.. Crank em slow.. Don't be afraid to hit the rocks with your bait.. Especially early. And don't worry bout breaking the bill off a few.. We got plenty..

Well that was a lot of fish talk.. Let's talk about tournaments..

This weekend we have Alamo Bass Club in town, and I reckon we'll have a few of the more serious fishermen who are going to be fishing the Metro tourney next weekend back down doing some final scouting.

And as stated above, the San Antonio Metropolitan League of Bass Clubs will be here next weekend (Oct 5-6) to hold their annual foray with member clubs fishing against each other.. They have been doing this since 1974..

Same year I graduated from High School.. And if anybody In my class can do math, that means that this will be the forty-fifth year of this little experiment..

On the same weekend, Ingram Bass Club will also be here.. So expect a bit of a crowd at the County Ramp next Saturday and Sunday.

 

If you are fishing the south end of the lake, and who ain't, there are two distinct patterns going on. Brush piles and.. Ahhh..

Well shit I know there is another one..

There is no doubt that the brush piles are a magnet to just about any kind of fish, and the bass are frequenting them fairly regularly..

More regularly than Ringo reads the Bible..

And if you and them happen on the same pile at the same time the intersection can be rewarding.

A soft plastic is certainly the easiest way to fish em, and a weedless rig will go a long way in the prevention of re-tying.. But you are going to lose some shit..

A big crankbait is also a great way to get bit.. Some days better than the plastic.. But it does take some articulation to fish the brush without donating to Falcon Lake Tackle.. But that is why we are here, and we got lots of em.

Now that I think about it.. A big crankbait is certainly the best..

Honestly folks, a big crankbait on rocky ridges and ledges is a great technique for catching fish from Pierce's south. It is work and you gotta hang with it. But it can pay big dividends.

The Tigers are full of ridges and points and humps.. Find them and you will find fish.. And likely a lot of brush piles..

The main lake around marker three has a lot of rock and structure very near deep water. It is another good place to dredge the deeper rock..

If you are not sure about which baits to throw, stop in and we'll recommend a few.. But the tried and true are still just that. We ain't re-inventing the wheel down here..

 

Let's talk crappie. Holy shit have we seen some whoppers lately.. True two pounders are fairly common. I think this spring we are going to see some three pounders fair regularly.. But some of the brush is loaded with 14 to 15 inch fish that are truly fantastic.. And these ain't no skinny Piney Woods crappie.. No offence meant..

I'm using 10lb braid, and I think that is the way to go. If you use 4 or 6 pound mono, you are going to get a lot of bites.. But you are going to retie a lot.. We got plenty of jigs.. Stop by..

And don't be trying to boat flip them bigguns.. It don't work.. Too often..

The white bass can invade your area at any minute.. Wherever you are.. Open water schooling has been pretty common, and if you are running points with a crankbait you will most likely run into some during the day.

 

Keep in mind that with the hot weather still in place, we still have hot water.. Middle to upper eighties.. If you are tournament fishing please do you best to take care of your fish. Our fish..

I got a lot of e-mails a couple of weeks ago when I posted a few pics of shit I been doing the last few years. So I thought I'd post a few pics of some local shit. From a few years back..

Nobody wants to see pics of old big fat bass anyway.. If you were down here back in the day, you'll recognize a few..

Old pic from cover of Life Magazine back in the 50's..

Redwood Lodge circa??

Hump in front of dam back in 2002..

What I think was the Dolly Parton pre-lake.

Guerrero church.. When it still was..

And a modern technological advance.. The Shadnick.. The only satellite dedicated solely to fishing on Falcon. Blasted into orbit in 2009.. Still receiving telemetry every day.. I remember strapping them Chineze Monkey bottle rockets to that bastard like it was yesterday..

"It'll never fly, Orville." Tommy Bendele, April 2018..

And of course who can forget the infamous Parking Lot 32 pound limit in 2010..

Well I reckon I have rambled on long enough..

We hope to see yall before too long.. Fall is a commin' and it is going to "ON" around here..

I'll be back...

September 17, 2019: I can't believe it is the middle of September already.. Time flies when you are having fun.. Or when you ain't..

I was all excited about the spin in The Gulf.. But it looks like it will head mostly into crawfish land.. Another near miss..

But I am still optimistic something will happen and bring us some water.

We have come up a bit and we are currently sitting at 266.12.. Which ain't great.. But it could be a lot worse.. And it has been..

There are a shit load of storms in the Pacific, but they mostly want to head west.. As much as California sucks, you'd think they'd head a bit more north..

I'm watchin..

Fishing was decent over the weekend, if you were fishing in the right spots. And according to everybody that was near the dam, that was the right spot. Reports of fifteen boats in a two hundred yard circle were common..

The Tigers were also a popular spot.

The API tournament that was held Friday and Saturday, was poorly attended as only nineteen entry's were recorded. And results varied widely from top to bottom.

But like usual somebody gets on em good, and there is always a winner.. And it was actually pretty tight at the top, with three teams weighing in over thirty pounds for the six fish total stringer.

The top weights were, 35.12, 33.09, and 32.69 respectively..

That's six fish.. That's still pretty bad ass if you ask me.. And no guides finished in the top two places..

That's about a six pound average for the winners..

You ain't doing that anywhere else..

And I apologize for the lack of names.. I know some of the team members but not all and it don't seem right to name one without the other.. If I get the full results I'll post..

The Uvalde Bass Club was in town as well, and they caught em decently, but nothing stellar.. They also fished a three fish tourney, and on Saturday about ten pounds won it.. They fish two one days, and I did not hear the results from Sunday.

Thanks to all of you who came in and visited and spent money with us!

Brush piles are still the most magnetic when it comes to holding fish. And most of the good fish that were caught over the weekend came off brush piles.

Some folks told me that the big fish are not as prevalent in them as they were.. And some folks did well on numbers in the shallows as this rising water has a few fish up on the bank.

Big crankbaits and big soft plastics accounted for most of the fish.. A few were reported on jigs as a few more folks are starting to throw them.

Stop in and we'll talk where and what..

 

I sent an e-mail a few days ago to Craig Bonds at TPWD, and asked what, if anything was happening on the cormorant front.

The short story is basically nothing..

PAW has a seat at the table in discussions with the Feds, but to date all that has happened is a bunch of yammering and a huge expenditure in government funds for all the chiefs to attend meetings all over the country..

Or at least that is my take.

Much of what we are up against is lawsuits filed by tree hugging mother fuckers that know nothing of what is going on out in the real world..

Where the trees are..

Or where the trees were.. Before the cormorants killed them with their excrement. But it don't matter to the cormorants.. They'll just move on to a new area on the lake.. Till they kill it too..

You see the cormorants don't have the ability to reason.. Much like the folks that are trying to protect them and put them ahead of all else without consideration of rational protections for all species.

Man and fish included.

And really this makes no sense to me.. No, not the part about protecting the cormorants at all costs..

It's just that these same folks are the same ones that want equality for all.. And protection for all..

But exhibit such hypocrisy by promoting the cormorants devastation of other species.

It makes no sense..

Maybe it is because they can't see a shad, a bass, a perch, a herring, a minnow, or a thousand other fish that the birds are devastating.. It's true.. It is hard to see under the water..

But they can see the majestic cormorant.. Gliding on thermals.. Sharp eyes pealed for prey.. Their fabulous plumage shining in the sun..

Oh wait.. That's the Bald Eagle.. The symbol of American pride..

We're talking about cormorants. A piece of shit water bird that destroys all it touches and then moves on..

 

It is true that our government has lost its way.. That it is more into appeasement and non confrontation of political action groups that make a lot of noise..

Regardless of common sense compromises that could cure a myriad of problems..

And I ain't just talking water turkey here..

If the red tape has us so tied up that we can't even fix the obvious, then we really are fucked..

And it appears that that is the road we have chosen.

I guess it is time to get our state reps informed and involved about the plague that we have upon us.

Being I am having no luck with PAW..

Or at the least think that I will be dead before one cormorant is..

September 13, 2019: It's Friday the thirteenth.. It's a full moon.. There's a marathon of the Walking Dead on TV..

What could possibly go wrong?

But for those of you who do not suffer from Triskaidekaphobia, it is basically just another Friday.. And a nice one here as well.

I will tell you one thing that could go wrong.. If you hit the old bridge in the Veleno..

And to complicate matters, I hear the big marker that was tied to the west end has come off.. I have to get out there and pit a chain it on..

So be sure and stay to the west side of the creek on the way out.. If you do not know what I am talking about, ASK!

 

The API tournament is underway, with only nineteen teams participating. Weigh ins will be at Beacon Lodge down on the river about 2-3 o'clock.. If you are around and want to see what is weighed in..

There is also a big BBQ cookoff tomorrow with judging in the PM.. Call me if you need info on any of it..

Uvalde bass club is also in town this weekend, and they will be fishing tomorrow and Sunday.. Weigh in at County ramp both days I believe..

The lake is still on a slow rise.. Very slow.. Rain all around us yesterday.. But little here at the shop..

We are sitting at 265.91, so we are up a foot or so in the last ten days..

Top of the lake is dirty.. Pierce's south looks good.. Nice.. Great..

Deeper fish still being caught.. But a wave of very shallow fish have been reported the last few days.. Fresh water up on a bit of very shallow new grown grass I guess.. Lotsa bait up there in some spots..

Square bills or waking baits are good in that one foot of water..

Brushpiles are still best. But any rocky drop or ledge will work..

Of course not all brushpiles and ledges are created equal..

I will post a report on tourney results when I get em..

Some good fishermen out there this weekend that fish here a lot.. So we'll see what they do..

Come see us when you can..

9-11

It has been eighteen years since a bunch of brainwashed Muslim motherfuckers killed thousands of American civilians in an early morning attack on the American way of life..

And it is about the shittiest of feelings knowing that there was, and is, nothing I can do about it..

Can I harbor hate and disrespect for an entire religion, (supposedly; it's more of an ideology of hate and non acceptance in my mind) throughout my life, and not have it eat me up from the inside?

I have thought about it thousands of times..

But so far it hasn't bothered me any..

 

If you read the Koran, and admittedly I have only read a few passages, it is pretty clear that there is to be no acceptance or toleration of other religions. And from what I understand, if you cannot be converted, you should be tormented, or even killed..

If you read the old testament in the Bible, you can also find passages that speak of stoning's, and vengeance, but I have found no passages that speak in favor of conversion by force.

Maybe some of you more knowledgeable than me can find a passage that will contradict me..

And don't give me that shit about the Crusades.. The Crusades were in response to Islamic aggressions that went on for century's..

I am not here to get into a philosophical discussion about the differences between Christianity and the so called religion of peace.. I think it is quite evident which religion is more peaceful..

And accepting..

And maybe that is the problem with America..

We are too accepting.. And we let shit slide till our society no longer represents or resembles what it once was..

Almost all changes are incremental..

A bit at a time.. Till you can no longer even recognize the original wrapper..

Those that are all about re-making America in a newer, better image.. Your image..

Well yall can kiss my ass as well..

I know I am Old School.. And there are less and less of my kind.. And many think that me and my kind are non-relavent..

But don't expect me to EVER give up my beliefs. And that is something I will fight to the death for..

And that's all I am gonna say..

 

Fishing is good.. And bad.. Depending on where you are. What you are throwing.. And how you are fishing it..

The patterns working best are still deeper presentations, whether you have a jig or a crankbait or a soft plastic tied to the end of your line.

Repetitious casts to the same cover can be rewarding.. But you have to stick it out..

Rocky ledges.. Brush piles.. Humps..

SOS..

The water on the south end of the lake looks a lot better that the water on the north end.. We have a little bit of water flow coming down the river, and it has kept the top a little off color..

Currently we are on a very slow rise. Water releases have been cut to the minimum this week as good rains in the valley on both sides of the river have the ground saturated and the irrigators have no need for more water.

At least right now..

And we have entered a bit of a wetter pattern in South Texas.. So let's hope it stays around for a while..

We have also seen a bit less heat this week, as we have not made it over a hundred in the last few days.

I ain't saying it is over.. But it is September.. And we are headed for cooler times..

The lake has caught about nine inches of water in the last ten days, and that has made the concrete ramp at the state park a lot more friendly. It is very useable..

The ramp at the county park is great but flat.. Two wide..

The old Veleno bridge is about eighteen inches under the water, and it has a big orange marker tied to the west end of it.. Run past it to the west side about fifteen yards or so.. No sweat..

 

The annual API tournament is in town this weekend, and it is going to be headquartered out of Beacon Lodge as usual. Registration is tomorrow evening.

The last few years there have been about thirty five teams entered, and I would expect about the same this year. So there will be some river traffic coming and going early and mid afternoon north of the Veleno.

For info on the tourney go to Border Chapter API..

 

Good fish have been caught from the Tigers south, and if I was fishing a tournament that is where I'd be..

I'm a shallow water fisherman.. But right now it is all about offshore..

 

If you need a Mexican license, give us a call.. In advance if possible. And we will have it ready for you when you get here..

I will get back to a more fishing fishing report the next time around..

Till then, Keep the Faith America!

And stay vigilant.. We're always one day away from some bullshit.. And there is no telling where it might come from.

But that's the world were in..

September 5, 2019: Tropical storm Fernand has pretty much come and gone from Zapata, and it did about what I thought it would.. It gave us some nice rains that were sorely needed, but did little to raise the lake level.

But what it did do was to get the Valley on both sides of the river wet.. In some places real wet. And this should stem the flow from Falcon for a bit.. As of this morning, releases have been cut to about 1000 CFS, which is about as low as it gets.

Hopefully this will just be the beginning of rains that will benefit the lake as we head farther into September, which lately has been a good month for rains along the Rio Grande.

The gauge here at FLT showed about 2.5 inches total for the last couple of days.. And I think we are about through with this event..

The lake came up about four inches or so, which helps the state park ramp. What the rain did do was wash out the parking lot at the county ramp, and piled some silt on the ramp.

But I just got off the phone with the county and they are on it.. And they promise to have the area in good shape for the Metro tourney in October..

Nobody fished yesterday.. At least nobody I know of.. It was a washout and a windout.. So reports from yesterday are nonexistent..

But.. In the days prior, all the guides that have been out have whacked em really good, and Holly caught this DD fishing with Matt Reed..

All of them are fishing the south end of the lake.. Almost exclusively.. And most of them are still saying that the afternoon bite is best..

Deep is best, and big diving crankbaits are a good choice on ledges, and tickled above brushpiles.

Of course a soft plastic is easier to fish around them, and can be just as productive on any given day and spot.

Stick with the old tried and true colors. Something with some chartreuse on a crankbait.. Or the citrus shad in the Spro or 6XD is also good.. Plum and Plum Apple are hard to beat on the worms and other soft plastics.

Those are not the only things that are working.. But it is a damn good place to start..

I have been really impressed with the health and quality appearance of the fish on Falcon this summer.. They are built like tanks for the most part, and are as mean as any fish I have ever caught, including the fish in Mexico.

But hell we are in Mexico, practically..

I see great things for the fall down here.

Another thing that we are seeing lately is a hatch of summertime spawn fish, that are now from four to six inches long.

And while their size right now is cormorant preferred, they cain't get em all. The summer spawn is well documented around here. And seeing these fish is not at all uncommon.

I remember talking to a good number of folks a couple of months back that swore they caught spawning fish.. I told them they did.. Remember that wave of shallow fish we caught back then? Bunch of fatties as I recall.. In knee deep water..

I love me some Falcon..

The water cooled a few degrees the last couple of days.. You will find it about 83 to 85 degrees today. That is still very warm so take care of your fish if you have em in the well.

This weekend finds the Laredo Bass club holding their championship here at the county ramp, and they will have approximately 35 boats in the contest.

UCBC is also on their way here as well and they should have at least twenty boats in their tournament.

I also have on my schedule that Quality Bass Club and San Antonio Bass Club are coming to town..

And if they all show up it will be the busiest weekend we have seen in months..

We look forward to seeing all of you here!

If you are coming and have been living under a rock and need a new Mexican license.. Please give me a call, we will have it ready for you when you get here..

The new system takes a bit of time to get it done and it will save both of us time if you pre-order..

We can do it when you get here, but it is much easier to get it done while I am sitting on my ass doing nothing..

 

The bridge in the Veleno was just coming visible this week.. Before the rains came.. And now it has about four more inches of water over it..

You CANNOT drive over it without hitting it.. I am going to try tomorrow to get that big orange marker back on the west end of it.. I am going to wear some snake leggings and a Chastity belt before I get out on top of that bridge..

Got to protect the vitals..

Let us know if we can help you in any way, and remember it is still summer down here.. Be prepared to deal with some heat AND humidity this weekend..

Like always, we'll see you on the water!

September 3, 2019: Optimism.. Hopefulness about the possibility of a good or desired outcome..

And for the first time in a while I am optimistic about getting some rain around here.. Although we have already received two inches in the last week, counting the inch we got yesterday..

That's gonna make the grass grow..

If you are any kind of Falcon fan, you are probably also watching the disturbance in the gulf, that is drifting towards the Mexican shore, a few hundred miles south of Brownsville.

This storm is certainly not making news, with the Cat 5 storm that is roaming around just below Florida. Although it has calmed down some, after devastating the Bahamas.. Too early to tell how bad it was over there, but it has to be a catastrophic scene.. Prayers out to all those living down there.. We'll see how bad it is in the very near future..

Looking at the storm in the Gulf, and its projected path, it is possible that we could get some beneficial rain, if it tracks far enough north. At the minimum, it should get the valley wet enough to have them shut down releases from Falcon for a while.

But I am greedy, and certainly want a lot more than that.. Time will tell.. So we will wait and watch the next couple of days.

Believe it or not, we are still three feet higher than we were last year at this time..

One note of warning.. The old Veleno bridge is in the strike zone so avoid it at all costs.. I just have not been able to get the end of it marked yet, but will try to get it done this week.. Skirt the west bank going out and you will be fine..

I hear the top of the bridge rails are visible if you are up close.. But the water is off color and they are hard to see.. If we drop a bit more you will see them.. If it comes up some.. You won't..

I will try to get that buoy on the west end this week if I can find a helper.. It will be a giant orange one ten feet long..

 

Fishing remains good, especially on the south end of the lake. Deeper is better, and flukes, worms, big crankbaits and jigs are catching fish.. The jig bite has really picked up I hear..

Carolina rigged baits are good, but Texas rigged soft plastics have been doing well in the brush piles as of late.. And they don't hang up near as bad.. But you can fish any of the above on rocky ledges and humps and get bit..

The afternoon bite is as good or better than the morning I hear from several folks that are fishing a lot.

If you are going to be fishing a tourney down here, keep in mind that the water is very warm. It was 87° when I was out last week. It may cool a bit this week if we get some clouds and rain, but it will not be cool..

I hate to keep preaching about fish care but I have been seeing and smelling way too many dead fish at the ramp here lately. If you are thinking that a fish is going to die.. He probably is..

It is easy to give away a few fish around here, so instead of completely wasting the fish, and polluting our local boat ramp environment, find someone to give it to if you do not want to deal with it.

It's not that hard..

I know a lot of clubs are headed to Falcon this month, in advent of the Metro tournament.

If you are heading our way, and need a Mexican fishing license, make it easy on both of us and call ahead so we can have your license ready.. It is not impossible to do it when you get here, but it does take some time. And if we're busy, it can take a little longer..

Holler at us with any questions you might have. They are the same cost as the last ten years..

I have a few pics to post, but am currently a little short on time. I will post another report before the weekend and will keep you updated on water, rain, ramps, etc..

Till then..

August 27, 2019: It's still hottern a fire at a salsa factory around here, and we are supposed to be in the low hundreds for another week. The high pressure is back on top of us, and it pretty much squelches anything like rain.. Or cooler temps.. Or freakin clouds..

How hot was it? Matt Reed took this snap down at the boat ramp at the state park last week.. It was a family affair..

Shade and water is a valuable commodity around these parts this time of year..

We did have a couple of day break from the really hot, and a few thunderstorms lumbered across Webb and Zapata counties. And it rained like a cow pissin on a flat rock in a few places on Saturday..

Here at the shop, we got an inch of rain in my gauge.. But I have no idea how it got in there as it was all coming down sideways.. We had straight line winds that were estimated at 60-65 MPH..

And if it wadn't tied down, it is no longer around.. Power was out in town for hours in most places.. Trees and trash cans have come up missing..

If you are missing something.. Look to the south..

Luckily this thing blew in about four in the afternoon, and most folks were off the water.. I did not hear of any damage to folks or boats on the water..

Elite Bass Club had a two dayer over the weekend, and there were some nice fish weighed in.. On Saturday there were two 9.13's weighed in.

And the leading stringers were just short of twenty five pounds.. I heard that both of these fish were caught in the same place.. By two different boats a couple of hours apart..

The two day wining weight was 31 pounds and the second and third place teams both had 27 something.. Everybody said the fish did not bite as good after the storm..

Overall fishing is still pretty fair, but the truth is that not a lot of folks are hitting it too hard.. Outside of the tourney folks..

Deep cranks and soft plastics in deep water.. Square bills on the shallow rock.. Pretty much status quo..

This is our typical summertime pattern.. Rockpiles.. Points and ridges..

This report is a rinse and repeat.. Again.. And nothing is going to change till the first norther breaks the back of this high pressure on us.. And we need that fucker out of here so we can get some late summer rains on the river above us..

We're due Baby..

Other species are still active, especially if you are fishing the sunken brush.. Everything lives there.. The other day we caught seven species while crappie fishin..

Crappie, black bass, white bass, perch, blue cats, Gaspergoo, and a tilapia.. That's fifty bonus points for the tilapia..

We had our asses handed to us a few times by what I am sure were catfish or bass.. You ain't stopping them big Mo-Fo's with six pound line..

Anyway, if you like fishing, there is always something biting around here..

 

The other day I got a phone call from an old high school classmate and he told me that our class is having a 45th class reunion..

I said WTF? Couldn't wait till fifty? Reckon they think we'll be dying off before we get there..

And after I got through berating him about having it on September 21st, the traditional opening day of dove season, he reminded me that this year the opening day in the south zone is the 14th..

I knew that.. But I forgot..

While on the subject.. Why in the fuck doesn't PAW open the dove season the same way, the same day, all across the state.. This shit is ludicrous..

Morning.. Afternoon.. South of 90.. West of whatever.. 1st.. 14th.. Two mourning doves.. How many whitewings..

Could they make it any more complicated?

You can hunt on a corn or milo patch.. Or plant sunflowers and shoot over em. You can even shred a crop and hunt over it..

But you better not scatter any grain out there.. No, No.. That would be baiting..

Bullshit..

Did I say that was Bullshit?? It's really utter bullshit..

 

Anyway.. I was talking to my old classmate and he asked what I have been doing the last few years..

I told him I have done some swimming..

I killed a few gar..

I shot some doves in Mexico..

Shot a few birds in Argentina.. Five times.. Damn I love that shit..

I caught some bass in Mexico..

I caught a twenty pound Peacock in Brazil..

I fished below the dam on Falcon..

I went out to Big Bend..

I'm living in the Texas brush country..

My cactus finally bloomed..

I met Rocky and his buddy..

I invented a new potato/tomato/cheese dish.. I call it Death By Cheese.. Cain't eat no freakin meat..

You gotta enjoy something..

I got my cat on an exercise plan..

I went to see all the Texas Independence battle sights in South East Texas..

I dug up a pot on a sandbar in Mexico while arrowhead hunting..

I celebrated the election of Donald Trump..

I built my Mom a quilt rack..

I saw Sugar lake full..

I bought me another 222.. Dammit.. One flier..

I filmed a Teradactyl that everyone thought was extinct.

And I bought me a new workshop.. Errr.. House..

Other than that I just been workin'..

And trying to keep from getting the fuckin gout!

All things in life change.. And a lot of my ability has, and yours will too..

When I was fifty-five I could jump a five wire fence with my dick in my hand.. Now I can trip over a nickel left on the floor..

So I say to you. Life is short.. Do it while you can.. It's a big, beautiful world out there.. Go get you some..

I'm down to doing it when I can.. I ain't ready for em to throw dirt on me just yet.. But we'll see how it goes..

Don't forget to take joy in the little things.. And give God a shout out for all the blessings in your life..

Keep the faith folks.. Come see us when you can..

And if you see my truck at the ramp, I'll probably see you on the water!

August 19, 2019: A new week on the books down here and we are promised that the high pressure on us is heading west. Should get our highs down to 102 or so..

Break out the sweaters..

But they did not mention any rain..

Maybe that SOB will circle us up some sea breeze showers off the gulf.. Hope springs eternal..

I have been writing the same stuff for the last month when it comes to fishing..

It's hot. Fishing is good.. Fishing sucks.. Fishing is So-So..

Yeah, well it is all about getting out there and fishing.. Something a lot of folks are not interested in this time of year.. Just too freakin hot..

Cain't say I blame em.. My fishing has been limited as well..

But a few hours in the Veleno, right here at home can produce numerous bites and some good ones on occasion..

If you want to get serious, I would still head south to the Tigers and beyond and fish ridges and humps and ridges and humps with brush on em..

Points with rock and wind on them are also producing some fish, sometimes several in succession. Small schools of fish have been sighted and some of them caught on most any crankbait chunked in there..

I do not leave home without a sexy shad square bill tied to a rod. Or a Red Eye shad in sexy shad.. Anything you can chunk a mile at a chasing fish..

Of course I personally am throwing the squarebill a lot of the time.. Keep your eyes open for a pack of egrets standing in the water pecking at shad.. There are usually some bass not too far away..

 

The real ticket these days though is fishing brushpiles. Same on a lot of lakes. Summertime.. Deeper water.. Brush..

And when you don't have shit in the water but hardwoods and rocks.. A planted pile of thick and often green brush will attract bait and forage.. And everything that eats em..

The guides, and a few others, have put in a lot of work to put brush piles on a lot of ridges and humps and creek channel edges.. And it is paying off those guys, and for you if you hire them..

If you are good with your electronics you can probably find a few, as people do on lakes all over the state..

A magnum fluke in those bushes has been good.. Watermelon based is the ticket.. Stop by and I'll show you what we are using..

Steve Simmons drove all the way here from Virginia to fish with Jay Grieshaw because he has been catching some big fish.. And sure enough he caught this 10.39 on Saturday..

There are some very good guides here on Falcon and you can shortcut your fish finding by hiring one of them for a day or two..

See our guide page for contact information for the folks we suggest..

 

While I am in the sales portion of this report, let me ask you a favor..

If you or someone you know needs a Mexican fishing license, please call ahead and let us get it done for you. Before you get here..

Can we do it when you are here? Sure.. But it is not an exact science.. We have been spending an inordinate amount of time on the phone with credit card company's and their fraud departments while we are ordering licenses on their Mexican server..

Sometimes it goes thru in a snap.. Sometimes not so much.. And if we have to mix in a call to the Visa fraud department... Well you get the gist..

There are several fairly large tournaments coming up on Falcon and Amistad..

The TABC state championship and the SIT are in the middle of September in Del Rio..

The API and the SA Metro tournament are rapidly approaching here on Falcon..

So if you are going to need a Mexican license lets get it taken care of sooner than later.. One good thing is that we can select the start date on the license with the new system.. So you won't be overlapping days of validity if you let us know when you want it to start..

We can hold the license here for you. We can mail it to you. Or we can now send it to you in a PDF if you like and you can print it out and save the postage.. And that can also help you last minute guys that find you need a license right now..

And we'll do the best we can to get you taken care of whichever way you choose..

 

The crappie are still on the bite, in brush piles of their choosing. With the loss of water we had lately, some of the fish have relocated to deeper piles.. Or actually piles in in similar depths.. Just different ones in sixteen to twenty feet..

Reports of white bass are still good.. You can run into them most anywhere. The old Veleno bridge still has some on it as well.. It is not peeking out of the water yet.. But close..

 

We have stabilized a bit in water level but we are still creeping down slowly.. Rain.. We need rain..

Other than that there is not a lot new going on around here. We are just waiting out the heat and the next thunderstorm..

The departure of one.. The arrival of another..

Oh yeah.. The arrival of you will also brighten our days..

And we look forward to seeing you here sooner than later..

Holler at us with anything you need help with..

See you on the water!

August 16, 2019: Well.. It was hot and windy.. Now it has been hot and not so windy.. But mostly just freakin hot.. And it's gonna be for the next week. But according to the internet.... This is the hottest week of the year on average.. And we're living up to it..

And Falcon is a big titty and the valley has it's lips stuck to the nipple.. And they're sucking water out faster than it is being replenished..

We are sitting at 265.85, or 35.35 feet low. Not unusual.. But I don't like it.. And I am not sure where we are headed from here. But I got an idea if it don't rain..

For reference. The old Veleno bridge is just under the water, and the new bridge over the Veleno has about two feet of water under it.. The state park concrete ramp is about two feet of water from being unusable..

The county ramp is fine but flat..

This has kinda been a replay of the last two years.. I hope the fall turns out the same.. With good rains on the water shed below Amistad.. We'll see..

But maybe they'll just take out the dams on the Rio Grande like they're doing on the Guadalupe.. Then we'll just go back to being a river like God made it..

I can't believe the shit they're planning on the Guad..

Anyway..

Not many fishermen down here this week.. With the first week of school going on and temps pushing the mercury out the top of the glass it's not too surprising..

The Magnum Fluke is still catching a good number of fish.. Anything watermelon based is good.. Magic and Mardi Gras are good choices..

Deep cranks on rocks and tickled across the tops of brushpiles have also been good. It takes a little finesse to fish a high dollar crankbait over the top of these thorny assed brush piles.. Well if you ever want to get it back..

Slow and easy is the ticket, and when you feel contact let it float up a bit and then just tick it along off the top.. Till the SOB hangs up..

I'm going with the fluke..

I do sell some good lure retrievers though.. But it sure as hell messes up the bite while you're draglining the pile retrieving your lure..

But they'll get over it in a few minutes..

I don't see any tournaments on the books for this weekend down here.. September is going to get a little busier with the advent of prefishing for the Metro tournament the first week in October.. A lot of the SA area clubs will be holding their monthly tourneys down here in order to prefish for the October contest.

That will be October 4th and 5th..

And I am hoping for a front to blow it's way out of Canada to push this high off of Texas way before then..

The hardwoods on the main river channel are starting to put out a few fish.. Like they always do when the water gets about this level. Across from the Veleno and down lake just across from Dolly Parton on the Mexican side are good places to try.. That shade is the real deal.. And don't be afraid to fish laydowns that are one foot deep..

And if you don't know what to do at all.. Put your trolling motor in the water at the county ramp, tie on a sexy shad squarebill, and fish all the rocks in the creek.. You'll catch em..

Typical summer fishing around here.. And it ain't gonna change anytime soon..

 

Yesterday I was down at Rockport fishing with a guide buddy of mine, and he fishes out of an airboat in the Goose Island area.. And we caught a limit of redfish and black drum and had em cleaned before noon..

My old buddy Ted said he always wanted to ride on an airboat, so I sais "Hotdammit lets make it happen."

This is certainly not the first time I have been on the airboat back in the lakes and lagoons back in there.. But this is the lowest I have ever seen the water.. We slid across sand and ankle deep water in a lot of places to get back where "A rabbit couldn't go." (Johnny Horton, 1959)

And it always amazes me to see all the freakin fish swimming in water that will barely cover their backs.. And we caught reds out of water less that a foot deep actual all morning..

We stopped in one spot, and after fishing a few minutes I looked over the side of the boat and there was a redfish, squashed to the bottom, with half of him sticking out from under the side of the boat.. Kinda looked like the wicked Witch of the West's feet sticking out from under Dorothy's house..

I told Steve to, "look at that!"

And he said, "Son, when I park on a school of fish, I park on a school of fish!"

We had a great day of fishing in a half day.. If you are interested in a trip down there and want the airboat experience give me a holler.. I'll hook you up.. The fishing is awesome..

 

I was reading this morning about how the TPWD new regulations regarding Alligator gar are going into effect on Sept. 1st..

I have rarely seen such a crock of shit.. And I have seen some crocks of shit.. And I have been sales pitched quite a few crocks of shit in my time.. And I don't care what kind of pretty crock you put it in, shit is still shit..

You lucky dogs.. You are just in time to enter a drawing for the incredible opportunity to harvest (Kill, catch, spear, bowfish, or rod and reel and kill) an Alligator gar over 48 inches long..

But only one hundred and fifty of you. Here's a quote from TPWD on their news release.

"With the new drawing system being implemented this year, we will be able to give 150 anglers the opportunity to harvest the fish of a lifetime."

Like this is an improvement in the ability or possibility of anglers to harvest the fish of a lifetime?

I think we need to do some critical reading and thinking about what this statement means..

What it actually means is that you cannot just go and harvest the fish of a lifetime without special permission from the state. Without first winning a lottery.. And getting a permit.. Yada yada yada..

What it means is that they have removed the right of hundreds, thousands, maybe millions of people to to harvest the fish of a lifetime..

That's what it actually means..

And gosh darn it, when you are hot you are hot.. You lucky dogs; now you get to (free of charge) download an app so you can report any gar taken to the gar police.. Not optional.. A requirement.. For all Texas waters except for Falcon..

That 48 inch regulation is in place for a certain part of the Trinity River.. You gar hunters will figure out where..

BTW.. An alligator gar on the Trinity that is 48" long is weighing in at a whopping 28 pounds on average, according to TPWD data..

And the really ridiculous part of all this is that these new regulations, rules, laws, are being implemented without regard to the millions of dollars worth of research and study done by TPWD in the field..

Yes they have taken the work of scientists, kicked it to the curb, and arbitrarily passed laws because it made them feel good..

And that my friends, is the true definition of the proverbial, "Crock of Shit," that you hear tell about..

That's what happens when you put politics and emotion over science..

 

So why don't you come down to Falcon. The last free bastion of gar killing heaven.. Where the gar are as thick as hair on a dogs back.. And where you can kill five a day if you want..

And you don't have to tell Mommie about it either..

I better go put some merch on the shelves.. Before I get myself all worked up..

I wish PAW would put as much work into some real problems.. Like the fucking cormorants..

See you later. Hopefully on the water!

August 12, 2019: Hot and Windy.. Hot and Windy.. Hot and Windy..

Holy shit, I think we are stuck in a temporal time loop.. I seen it once on Star Trek.. So I know it can happen..

We are still hitting 103° or so every afternoon.. I have seen reports of higher all along the Rio Grande.. And once you're at 103 it don't seem that much hotter at 108..

But all of Texas is sitting under this high pressure system.. And I been around long enough to know that this happens almost every year.. So it ain't anything we ain't used to..

We still have a few folks fishing down here, despite the temps and the winds.. And while some have done better than others, (bout the norm) there have been a few groups that have figured them out..

 

Funny thing is that some of the folks that have figured them out have figured them out several different ways..

There have been shallow fish, which I am catching, and deeper fish and then there are some really deep fish.. Down to twenty five feet in a lot of places..

If I can't stand on the bottom and still breath air it is a bit too deep for me.. I told you the other day that I don't like running.. Hell I don't like swimming either..

I could sell my boat.. I could wade fish the depth of water I fish.. But it does make getting around the lake a bit easier..

The squarebill bite is still working around here.. Especially in the Veleno.. Of course the Veleno can get a bit crowded on a weekend.. Especially with the winds we have had..

Yesterday the Laredo Bass Club had their monthly contest, and a lot of the fishermen stayed in the home creek..

But the tournament was won down south, with the fish being caught out of deeper brush piles I hear. It took over twenty five pounds to win, and twenty and change was second.. Good umber of fish caught I hear..

 

That big fluke is still catching a lot of fish.. And quality fish as well..

The super fluke is also catching some fish. But the bigger fish seem to like the bigger bait a little better.. Some of these fish have been coughing up shad six to eight inches long.. And they seem to be eating them a lot right now..

This lake is so full of bait it is just ridiculous.. I assume that is why the cormorants and white bass love it as well..

 

I have always had a theory about Falcon that included perch.. Bream to you Yankees.. Bluegills.. Shell crackers.. Sunfish.. Long ears.. Short ears.. Rio Grandes.. Cichlids..

You know.. Perch.

And when the perch population is healthy around here, everything else seems to be too.. And you can see it in the bass we are catching.. The high percentage of them are as fat as a Christmas pig..

With a ton of fight and energy.. They pull like a freakin tuna..

And I am seeing and catching more and more perch every time I drop in a few brushpiles for some crappie.. And I have heard the same thing from a lot of other folks..

They ain't much bettern' scaling a perch.. Choppin his head off, and deep frying him till golden brown and eatin the meat right off the bones.. And I eat them fins and the tail just like a tater chip.. Awesome..

You gotta watch the little bones.. But damn that is some sweet meat..

When I was a kid, if you were choking on a fish bone, Mama would always make you eat a piece of bread.. I don't remember if it worked or not.. But I'm still here.. So I guess it did..

 

I still don't have a marker on the west end of the bridge.. The lake level has kinda stabilized with releases from Amistad.. But maybe on the next calm morning, (whenever in the hell that might be) I'll get out there and try to get it done.. You do not want to hit that bridge..

 

Nothing has changed when it comes to the fishing.. And this report is about as redundant as it can get.

Fall is just around the corner.. Well kinda.. And before long it is gonna get wet around here and cooler and we will be fishing newly flooded brush..

At least that is what I am hoping for. I don't mind ever cleaning green shit off my crankbait hooks.. It is a labor of love..

 

I do have an update on the Mexican fishing license situation.. It does not look like we will be getting licenses like we did in the old days from a distributor that sold them to a bunch of resellers (us included) across the southwest.

We sold them here for twenty years..

Well with the recent invention of the internet, Mexico has gone to an all on-line sales approach. I am not sure if anything will change in the future, but all license sales are coming thru their portal for now.

It does take some doing to get it done. It is something you can do.. But it is a pain in the ass.. Mostly because you will probably have to call your bank and authorize international charges on your CC over the Web.

And I know a lot of you might be uncomfortable with that, dealing with a Mexican server..

We will be glad to get your Mexican fishing license for you.. At the same price that we have always provided them for..

Just e-mail or call and we will get it for you.. And like always we will be glad to mail it to you..

We can also get you one when you walk in the door. But it does take a few minutes and if we are a bit busy it may take a bit longer..

If you now you are coming, and will need a license when you get here, call us and we'll have in ready when you show up.. Makes it easy on both of us.

Another good thing about this system is that we can start your annual license on whatever date you want.. So if yours is coming up soon we can get you a new one starting the date your old one expires..

So do us both a favor.. If you want/need a new license.. Avoid the rush of tournament day and call us and we'll get it done in advance..

If you have any questions about it please call and we'll answer any questions you might have.. But in the big picture, nothing has changed..

 

The kids are getting back to school.. And maybe it is time to take a little vacation of your own.. So bring your sunblock and a floppy hat and get your ass down here.. Before the crowds show up..

See you on the water!

P.S. I do not personally know Bill or Hillary, and have never been in the same room with them. But I always admired and looked up to both of them..

August 8, 2019: Dog days.. We're in the middle of em.. And I think the reason that dogs lick their junk is to keep it cool.. Evaporation man.. It works..

I'm not a contortionist.. So I'll just stick with air conditioning..

I have pretty much used up every synonym and description for hot over the last ten years, and this year has been a typical summer in south Texas. Yeah it is hot.. But it is supposed to be..

Daytime highs this week have been running in the low hundreds.. If you call that low..

We have had some days when the wind has blown.. And some days when it has been just right.. And some days when there ain't a puff of breeze.. That'll get you off the water pretty early..

BTW.. That spotlock don't work worth a shit with zero wind.. Well I guess it does.. But that motor will drive itself crazy trying to figure out which way to move.. And you along with it.

 

For those that have braved the heat, some really nice fish have been caught. Methods and locations have not changed in a month.. Ledges, humps, and brushpiles are still the deal, in deeper water for the most part.. Twelve to twenty feet is a good area to concentrate on.

A magnum fluke and a deep diving crank bait are two things to not leave home without..

There are still shallow fish, and fish near the shoreline.. I had to do a repair on a board on my trailer yesterday, and being I had the boat in the water, I figured I would dink around in the Veleno for a bit although it was getting warm by the time I finished.

I threw a squarebill on rocky banks for about an hour, and I caught four fish and missed a couple while I was within sight of the boat ramp. And I'll tell you what.. These fish are about as fat and mean as any fish I can remember catching.. I caught a three pounder that made me get my net out.. Till I seen him.. They are overpowered.. Like putting a two-fifty on a sixteen foot Wrangler..

While I am on the subject.. Note to trailer/boat manufacturers..

Put some wolmanized wood and some freaking carriage bolts on the trailer bunks. That lag screw bullshit is just that..

Eighty thousand dollars for a rig.. And you put that trash on there.. It's like putting a push button AM radio in a new Cadillac..

I think you can afford the extra $20 it will cost.. Or shit make it an option.. Like every thing else..

"Well Mr. Bendele, would you like three or four sixteen inch units on the console?"

"No thanks.. Just give me the Ray Jeff flasher with the newfangled suction cup transducer.. But I do want to opt for the thru bolts on the fuckin trailer bunks..."

I know I bitch a lot.. But I am pretty good at it.. If I do say so myself..

 

The south end of the lake is still the clearest and the most popular. And while I won't call the north end dirty, (some would) it is off color some and a lot of folks just don't like fishing in it. The Veleno is an exception as the water color in it looks pretty good.

Speaking of the Veleno.. The old bridge has about eighteen inches of water over the rails, and if you hit it you are going to be very upset.. As is your insurance company..

Two days ago I tried to go out and re-attach one of those giant orange buoys to the west end of it.. Because I remembered where I had seen one washed up on the bank a few months ago..

And let me tell you I should have dragged it to the boat ramp back then.. That hundred pound son of a bitch was four hundred yards from the water, and it was like dragging a mule deer out of a canyon..

I'm not too much into aerobics these days.. Matter of fact, if it makes me breathe hard I try to avoid it all together..

Like I say.. If you see me running.. You need to be fuckin' runnin..

It took several rest stops to get it floating..

Anyway.. I had calculated that I should be able to see the bridge rail tops.. But I could not.. So currently the marker buoy is tied to a tree on the bank just west of the bridge.. And I will attach it to the bridge as soon as I can see the tops of the rails just under the water..

It is kind of a weird feeling getting off the boat, hoping you are stepping onto the old bridge, and not getting tangled up in all kinds of shit while you are shuffling along, not seeing what you may or may not be stepping on.. Or in..

There is fishing line, anchor ropes, trotlines, lower units.. And a shit load of shit I have tied to it over the years trying to keep it marked.. Including old buoys that have sunk and cables that attached them.. Kinda gives me the creeps..

But in any case, I will mark the west end as soon as it is feasible..

There is one marker on the bridge and it is about in the middle of it..

I have tried all kinds of attachment devices from rope to cable to small chains to try and keep these things attached. But the constant wave action yanking on them sooner or later wears them through and they float off..

Not this time motherfucker.. I bought some chain that you can tow a bulldozer with.. Hope it don't sink the buoy..

 

Fishing is good.. If you know where to fish.. The guides have been beating them like a rented mule the last couple of weeks.

Their common denominator as been brush piles. And all those guys have worked their asses off putting them out..

I'm too old for that shit.. And at this lake level, and as flat as the country is around here.. You gotta drag that shit a long way to get it in the water.. They're earning their money.. Believe me..

Water temps are mid to upper eighties.. And speaking of water, Amistad is releasing a bit more than they were, so hopefully it will mitigate the free fall we were seeing.. We'll see..

Ramps are still fine on both ends of the lake.. For now..

 

On another note, many of you have called requesting Mexican fishing licenses..

At this time, Mexico is not issuing any licenses to US resellers, like us.. They have closed the office in San Diego where we used to get them for over twenty years.. Nobody in the US is currently able to obtain any.. Believe me we are trying.. But there is no news from Mexico on it and I have no idea where they are heading with this..

Conapesca's website is still up.. You can try to get one there.. But it is a hassle and that is a fact..

I'll update you when I hear something different.

 

I always try to remind you when the water gets about this level, to run the river channel when running up and down the lake, especially if you do not know exactly where you are going.. Pay attention to your map and run the channels going in and out of creeks..

We don't have many big trees down here.. But the ones we do have grow close to the water.. And they did before the lake was impounded.. And they have been preserved for sixty five years and they are still harder than granite..

And they are near the river channel and scattered out on the flats near the river.. So don't be running wily nilly without regard for the wood.. It is harder than that stainless steel prop blade.. Ask me how I know..

 

Here's a couple of pics of personal bests caught this week..

Clay caught this 11.12 pound, 27.5" long yardstick. He's fished here a lot. But his wife's PB is still bigger.. Yeah it came out of Falcon too..

And Nicolas Karam caught this nine plus.. Gonna take a while to get that smile off his face..

 

In any case.. Summer is always a good time to fish on Falcon. Yeah it's hot.. But where in Texas ain't it?

I forgot to tell you that the crappie are still really good as well.. Although I have not had a chance to chase em this week.. Don't know how it can be so slow and I can be so busy..

Stop in and spend a buck or two with us.. It'll be worth your while..

See you on the water!

July 29, 2019: The wind and the heat are back, after several days of reprieve last week.. It was awesome.. Actually had a little NHO running down the lake last Thursday morning..

But that is the last day I was on the lake.. Too damn windy for me.. Although Saturday wasn't too bad.. But I was stuck in the store over the weekend anyway..

Before I get too far, I want to tell you that it is that time of year again.. When the old Veleno bridge is about to become a hazard to boats and lower units.. We are sitting at 267.66..

As of today you can probably still run over it but it is best to get in the habit of going past it on the west side, or the right side going out of the Veleno. There is one of the old markers that has appeared in the middle of the bridge. But the markers on the end of the bridges are no longer in place..

There is just a bit too much water still on the thing for me to mark it. But at current rates of decent it won't be too long till it can be done..

You don't think any fuckin governmental agency would mark it , do you? What a crock of shit..

In any case, if you are not familiar with the bridge, stop in here and ask before you go out of the home creek and we will explain what I am talking about..

You do not want to handshake with this structure..

Ramps on both ends are still fine.. But we are down to the two main lanes at the county ramp.. Use the center lane at the state park.

 

Fishing has been a little tougher for most the last few days.. And winds are compounding the situation, making it hard to fish much open water.. If I'm sounding a bit redundant.. Well I am..

When this high pressure sits on us, like it is now, we are likely to see more of what we have had.. But Wednesday and Thursday are looking pretty good.. Got it circled on my calendar..

There have been a few big fish caught lately, and certainly the deep water near the dam is the place to fish if you are after a whopper.. Deep cranks, C-rigs, jigs, and big shakey heads have accounted for most of the offshore fish.

That sounds a little repetitious as well, don't it..

Blane caught this 10.10 this week..

Fact is that it is summertime, and this pattern is standard issue around here.. It is hot and dry..

We did get 6/10ths of rain here at the shop last week.. And it was a welcome sight. It came on the front edge of the uncommon July cool front that passed thru.

There are still shallow fish out there.. And a decent number of fish have been caught on the rock piles that are becoming more and more evident on the river channel between the Veleno and marker eight. Small plastics and squarebills are the ticket here..

Some flipping fish were also reported, and as the lake falls, main lake hardwoods above marker eight will start to really hold fish. The water color on top of the lake is still a little off..

And with the big winds the last few days, I am sure the wave action on the muddy banks will keep it off colored for the near future..

But that don't mean that there ain't no fish in them thar trees.. Think shade when flipping em.. And fish slow.. The Plum Ol Monster (POM) and the Zoom Z-Craw in tilapia are good choices in that stained water.. Today you will need a 3/4 oz weight..

 

The crappie are still biting good in the brush piles.. Some days real good.. And there are some really nice fish being caught in the mix.. Of course there are a shit ton of little fish, and a bunch of legal sized fish in the batch as well..

I don't keep anything unless it is near whopper sized.. Or gut hooked.. And catching them suckers is a lot of fun when the bass are less than cooperative..

You can still run into a lot of white bass out there.. And they are stacked up around the old Veleno bridge right now.. But you may run into a plague of them on any windblown point on the lake.. Or anywhere in open water as well.

Of course the catfish are always biting, and rod and reel fishermen have been doing good on most any bait.. Punch bait in the trees.. Or cut bait up the river a bit..

If you fish near the cormorant roosts with some J-Pigg you can catch a box full of eating sized fish without doing too much work..

Where are the cormorants, you might ask? Look left after you leave the Veleno.. You can see miles of them in the trees and on the bank.. I mean thousands of them motherfuckers.. Turning the ground black..

I'm still waiting...

 

Well August is almost here, and before you know what is happening the Snowbirds will be heading back into town.. Although we have fewer every year it seems.

We still have a couple of warm months to go, but also before you know it we will be bitching about the north wind every few days.. Or at least I will..

It appears that I am pretty good at bitching, no matter what is going on.. And believe me, there is plenty to bitch about these days.. My Dad always said that I would bitch if I was hung with a new rope..

We'll save the bitching for another day..

Come see us when you can.. Staying awake around here is pretty hard, so yell when you come in.. I could be asleep..

Good thing I don't have a recliner in my office... But I'm thinking about it..

July 18, 2019: To say it is slow around here would certainly be obvious to a casual observer.. I think we have had three nights of full moons..

It's that time of year when time seems to crawl by.. It's hot and windy and more folks are thinking about staying cool than staying on top of the fish.

Situation normal..

And with so few folks on the water, it is hard to get a real handle on what is going on out there.. I went out last Sunday, but have not returned since. It has been just too darn windy to get me excited..

On Sunday I did find some fish on long points and some in brushpiles. I still have not caught a big fish lately, but I did have one clean my clock on a brushpile in about eighteen feet of water.

I thought everything was going fine.. Till my line broke.. Shit happens.. But to be truthful I get kind of complacent and do not retie as much as I should..

I'm still throwing a big fluke a lot, on a Carolina rig. I keep thinking that a big fish will eat it, but I can assure you that a little fish ain't afraid of it either. Watermelon Magic is a good choice.. Put some chartreuse on the tail.. Or head..

If you are going to flip a few trees, I still recommend the the POM, a Z Craw in Tilapia, or creature bait like a brush hog or a Rage Craw..

And to tell the truth, any of those baits are working well on a C-rig as well. You can also catch some fish an a properly dressed jig..

 

We are thirty one plus feet low.. Which is just a number when we get down to this point.. The cover in the lake will stay exactly the same for the next ten vertical feet of water level..

We are fishing three different types of cover right now.. And they're the only three things we have.

Rocks.

Wood.

And Brushpiles.

I guess you could throw in fence lines and roadbeds.. But I am gonna call them subspecies of the above..

Water temperatures are right around ninety, but it has not deterred the fish from the shallows in a lot of places. Especially early. And a topwater bait can catch you a mess of fish on the right point or windblown bank before the sun gets too high.

Think rocks in this application. We have a few muddy or dirt banks, and they just don't hold the fish the rocky banks do.. Think crawfish..

And raking the rocky bottom with a crankbait is a good way to get a bass's attention. A big billed crank in shallow water slowly bounced off the rocks can often work great..

A racecar don't have to go fast.. And a deep diver don't have to go deep..

I hate throwing them Red October crankbaits anyway.. But they are easier to throw up shallow and retrieve nice and slowly making a racket on the bottom.. And that big bill will often keep you from hanging up more than a squarebill will..

Try it sometime.. But what the hell do I know..

Universal City Bass Club is in town this weekend, and they have some good fishermen in the club.. Hopefully we will get some reports from them in the next few days.. But they will have some windy conditions to deal with I am sure..

 

And speaking of tournaments.. I know many clubs are headed down here in September to pre-fish for the Metro tourney.

The water is hot as the hinges on the gates of hell.. If your club is fishing a tournament, please make it a priority to to care of your fish!

We have had a lot of dead fish at the ramp here lately.. And it is hard to see on Monday mornings.

Consider a three fish tourney at the least, or a paper or weigh em in the boat tourney is even better.

It all starts with you.. The fisherman.. Take care of your fish in the boat!!

And if you have dead/dying fish, please don't throw the in the water cause you are too lazy to clean em. There are plenty of folks on the bank that will take em..

 

The ramps on both ends of the lake are still working fine. The center ramp at the state park is suggested.. And the two ramps on the east side of the county ramp are the best and longest. It's all good..

The Old Veleno bridge is still deep enough to drive over, but if we loose a few more feet, going around it to the right will become very important..

The markers are no longer on the bridge, but I am preparing to remark it as soon as it becomes necessary.. I think my scuba tank is empty..

But we will do it as soon as it can be done..

It is still dry in Zapata county, and we still have not received five inches of rain YTD.. Sad.. But it is our time of year to get some rain on the river.. Last year in September I think we had thirteen plus inches.. Hoping for a repeat..

Of course we do live in a desert..

Overall the fishing has remained pretty good around here.. Our worst enemy is the damn wind.. A little is good.. A lot is a bitch.. But we will deal with it accordingly.. And you will have to as well if you come on down..

 

BTW.. The crappie and the catfish and the white bass are still excellent. These days there is always something biting around here..

We hope to see you soon.. If you are in Zapata, stop by and talk about fishing.. At a fishing store that is more than a few clickable icons on your screen..

We'll do or best to help you find some fish on Falcon..

Don't forget your sunblock.. But if you do we got some here..

See you on the water!

July 11, 2019: It ain't cooled off any.. And we are going to be over a hundred all week long. Unless we get a thunderstorm or something like it.. Fishing till noon or one is about all I can take at my old age.. It was 98 at lunchtime..

Water temps are also the warmest I have seen in a couple of years.. It was 91° at noon today in the midlake..

Nothing has changed since my last report.. Water level about identical.. We are hovering around 270.. About 31 feet low.. Still lots of water out there.. And all the ramps are fine..

The wind has taken a few days off, and while it makes the boat ride much more pleasurable, when it goes dead it is an oven out there.. But it has not gone that dead.. Yet..

The storm in the gulf looks to stay east of us, and areas that don't need the rain are going to get it.. Situation normal.. It is hard to get a hurricane up the Rio Grande.. It just doesn't happen..

I guess that is why we are in a desert.. Well.. Some of the reason..

I took a buddy fishing on Saturday last week, and we fished the top of the lake. We only caught about six bass, but one of them was a 7-2.. We caught a few on squarebills, but mostly on soft plastics in the timber. Of course we fished from 8:30 till almost noon.. We ain't that mad at em..

Yes those are the Indian Bluffs in the background.. Water color in the Salado and the Hedieona both sucked.. But we did manage to catch some fish out of it.. Think dark colored baits up north.. The Plum Ol Monster is a great choice.. Not that I'm sweet on that bait or anything..

 

Today I fished a few hours, and about two thirds of the time I was fishing for crappie.. I caught a bunch of them, but most of them were about 9-12 inches long. I kept seven big son of a bitches.. They will be released at a later date..

The bass I caught were all smaller today.. I caught nothing over two and a half pounds.. And I might have had to pull on the tail to get them to weigh that much.

First cast on a C-rigged Fluke in W/M Seed caught a fish.. Those little fish are not afraid of that Mag Fluke..

Caught and missed a few others on it as well.. Mostly fishing humps and ridges in the big bay of the Tigers. There are lots and lots of rocky ridges in there, and lots of brush has been added on them. And with the lack of cover in the lake at current levels, brush piles can be a magnet.. And some of them are super magnets..

Not all brushpiles are created equal.. But if you happen on the right one, it can make a good day in a hurry..

Same with the crappie..

Speaking of non-bass species.. The catfish have been excellent on rod and reel or baited lines. A buddy of mine had out a twenty five hook trotline here in the Veleno last night.. And he had sixteen fish.. No monsters but all nice eating size..

If you are gonna hard core bass fish, I would recommend deeper water and deep presentations. A jig. A deep diving crankbait, or a C-rig. Or even a drop shot or shakey head.

Of course there are still shallow fish, especially early. And you can catch a few on top if you are in the right place.. After the sun gets up a bit, just move out those long points and ridges.. And looking at humps and ridges on your map will help you find the kind of water I am talking about..

Here are a few pics of fish caught this week..

Wally caught this 10-7 on Tuesday..

Local Yaker C.J. Hurtado caught this DD here in the Veleno..

And Ryan Myers caught this 10-2 down south as well.. On the Plum Ol Monster, of course..

I guess there are other lakes fishing as good as Falcon.. But fuck if I know which ones they are..

I ain't saying it is easy.. But if you come down here and get after it, you are going to catch some fish.

And much like those brush piles, not all fishermen are created equal either..

Some sons-a-bitches can catch fish with a bare hook.. Most of us have to work at it a lot harder..

But figuring them out is the rewarding part.. And once in a while it all comes together and we can walk around with our chests puffed out.. For a little while at least.. Till the next time we don't catch shit..

I sure like it better than Soccer..

Congratulations to the American lesbians beating up on the rest of the worlds lesbians.. I hear they celebrated with some hard lickers..

I told you the USA was number one.. We even have the best LGBTQ people on the earth.

And I say that if they can consistently beat some fifteen year old boys teams they should get equal pay as the men's team..

I'll let you know when that happens..

I still can't believe that people actually get paid to play soccer.. And it is harder to believe that people pay to watch it..

Told you the world is fucked up..

But what people do with money they have earned, I really don't care..

 

Of all the assholes on the planet, there is one group in particular that puts the rest to shame.. These little cowardly mask wearing Antifa motherfuckers need to have a mudhole stomped in their ass..

I'm talking about an old fashioned beatdown that would make Ike Turner smile..

You guys are some real bad asses with your faces covered so no one will recognize you.. Are you afraid your Mommie will see you and cut off your allowance? Or kick you out of her basement?

You're real tough when there are thirty of you and one of someone else..

Fuckin pussies..

And what the hell is up with law enforcement when these assholes are on the street? Yall need to start cracking some skulls and making things right. No one should get away with the shit that these guys pull..

Talk about infringing on other peoples rights.. And you're worried about protecting theirs?

I ain't got the cure for all the problems in the world.. But I could sure cure this one..

 

Well hell, I gotta go tarp the boat.. And with any luck I will uncover it again real soon..

Send that hurricane over here..

So we can see each other on the water!

July 3, 2019: When the temp's this high.. It must be July..

Hell it was a lot hotter last month.. Yeah.. Hot as hell..

Man, we have been promised rain for the last month.. And so far we have got what the little boy shot at.. Nothin..

It has rained around us.. Above us.. Below us.. East and west of us.. But not on us..

It is drier than a popcorn fart, as my Dad would say.. And for the YEAR.. We are stile sitting under five inches..

Last year we got 3.10 in July.. And .2 in August.. Followed by 13.85 in September..

I hope we get a rain before too long.. Stormy Daniels wouldn't even show up for five inches..

 

However.. The valley got hammered last week, and some places got over ten inches.. Much of the heavy rain fell on ground watered by the sacred liquid from Falcon. And I hear there is still water standing in cornfields up to the second ear..

And this rain has resulted in them finally stemming the flow from the dam..

Hallelujah!

So for the last week we have been holding petty steady, fluctuating only a few fractions.. We'll see how long this shit lasts..

The Pacific hurricane season is starting to get wound up, but so far everything has gone west.. We need a couple of storms to go straight up the poop chute of the Gulf of California.. And give that area a good enema..

In turn washing all the shit out of the creeks and arroyos that feed the Conchos..

I say the same thing every year.. But maybe not as succinctly..

 

Despite of the slowdown in water releases, it appears the the dam is still getting a lot of attention from the fishermen around here..

A buddy told me he got there at daylight yesterday, and there were already four boats near the gates.. But they are there for a reason.. There has been a good number of big fish caught there lately.

Big crankbaits with big bills have been very popular, and if you have Popeye arms you might want to join in the mix. Lots of chunkin' and windin' has been going on. You can also entice a strike with a C-rig, a Shakey Head, or a Drop Shot..

All of these applications have deep water and rock involved.. Depth can be a bit relative.. But break lines are always good. Twenty feet is none too deep for these bigger fish..

You can take these same tactics to the Tigers or big water points when the wind will allow. Even here at home in the Veleno the ledges have put out fish all week.

There are still shallow fish out there.. And I guarantee you that if you take a squarebill and run the windblown rocks you will run into some fish.

Last weekend saw some gusty winds on Saturday, and Sunday was a mixed bag of balloon juice.. It kinda came and went.. And came..

I did hear some complaining on Saturday, but Sunday seemed to be a better day.

Honestly, I have heard of fish being caught on a little bit of everything.. And I can't say that there is any one bait that is head and shoulders above the rest. You just gotta get out there and show it to em.. Cover some water.. And maybe you'll land on em.. Like a few of these..

Addison caught this 10.40 in a tournament weekend before last..

Kevin Welch broke his PB twice in one day, (First time on Falcon) with an eight and this 10.7..

I think she swallowed a Volkswagen..

And Pete Gonzalez caught this one in the last week as well.. 10.10.. Musta been a bright flash on that camera..

Seems like the big numbers of fish (30-50) have slowed a bit.. Twenty fish per boat for a couple of fellows has been the norm.. Some better. Some worse.. But I have heard of a good number of four to six pounders.

Of course you can run into a school of those chasing fish and you can jack your total catch rate up in a hurry.. Most of these are shallow fish..

The white bass and the crappie have been excellent, for those in the know.. Whites can be caught on most any point or out in the middle of the lake.. If you see a lot of Sea Gulls going Kamikaze you have probably spotted a school of them on the surface..

And honestly you can throw a used condom in there with some chartreuse on the tip and catch em.. (I told you they were biting soft plastics..) Be sure and remove the condom before you Texas rig it.. I ain't explaining that to Dr. Mary..

The crappie are in the brush piles, some places thick as dog hair. There are a lot of brush piles scattered around the lake. And several guides have done a shit ton of work putting them in.

I sure like that side scan.. And that Ultrex is a Godsend fishing that brush..

If you want to catch some really nice crappie, there are a few guides down here that can put you on em.. Great time with the kids..

And BTW.. A lot of these ain't no skinny ass, punie fish.. Them's some slabs..

 

Let's see. What day is it? July third... That makes tomorrow... No.. Not Groundhog Day.. Not The Day The Earth Stood Still.. Not Judgment Day.. Not Die Another Day.. Not even Ferris Bueller's Day Off..

The Longest Day.. Nope, nope.. That was last week..

That's right! Tomorrow is Independence Day!! The Fourth of July!

Holy Shit! A day to celebrate the founding of our country, and to stop and think about the good things here in America.

You ain't gotta look too far to see how good we have it here.. Yes even here along the South Texas border..

Although there is a lot of bitching and gnashing of teeth by some here in the US that should just move the fuck to another country..

I'm sick of hearing it.. And I don't need a retired bartender that don't know the ingredients of a rum and coke telling me what's wrong with America.. I already fuckin' know..

I think we should organize a national campaign to mail mirrors to about 99% of our elected and tell them to look in the mirror to see all the problems with America..

I bet we can get a bunch of cheap pocket mirrors from China..

Then every time the assholes up in DC can't figure out what the problem is, all they have to do is look in the mirror..

I have never seen such a divide.. Not even in a Blue Bell carton..

Of course I wasn't around in 1776.. But I feel their pain..

Maybe it is time to Plagiarize something I heard before..

"When in the course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation."

 

I think I can declare a lot of causes..

There is a line in the second paragraph that strikes me as odd.. But it shouldn't.. But it doesn't seem that it has been read by too many of our electorate..

"Deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.."

Yeah right.. They keep shoving so much bullshit into what they call governing it is pathetic..

And I know I'm just a face in the crowd.. But they ain't got my consent on much of this bullshit..

 

Well I don't want to get spun off on a terror here on Americas Birthday, so I'll just say, Have a Happy Fourth of July.. Party safely. And

June 25, 2019: Fishing on Falcon lately has been good, despite the conditions on most days. If you like hot and windy.. Well we got it..

Hot is fine, and as long as you are on the water, the evaporation and breeze will make it bearable. But when you step off the boat onto that parking lot.. That's when reality sets in..

Daytime temps have been running close to the century mark, and strong southerly winds have kept the humidity high, and on some days, it has made the main lake tough to navigate..

It's twenty four miles to the dam from Zapata, but over the weekend, if you had an odometer in your boat, it would register thirty one.. By the time you went up and down the waves..

Saturday was a real beauty..

But here it is Tuesday morning, and not a puff of breeze out there.. And I am stuck in here..

Yesterday evening we had thunderstorms charge Zapata from all sides.. Of course it did not rain a drop in the city.. It rained on all sides of us and the outflow boundaries from these storms made for a cooler evening, and a very pleasant 72° low this morning..

The valley got some real rains yesterday evening, some places up to four or five inches.. But it all fell below the dam and that water is not going to run uphill..

Maybe they'll shut the gates this morning.. Good rains fell over the areas that Falcon irrigates.. But who knows what they are doing with all the water they are still taking..

 

Despite the tough conditions, there have been a bunch of good fish caught. We had a few bass clubs in town over the weekend, and some fishermen landed on top of some nice fish. Not everybody caught big stringers, but most everybody caught fish.

Here's a report from Jonathan at Elite Bass Club about their results:

"Elite Bass Club just had our two day tournament on Falcon and I thought I'd share the results. Wind was the worst I have personally seen. Speared two waves in the Veleno! But everyone made it back safe.

First place blew everyone away with thirty pounds each day and a ten pound big bass. They were deep cranking down south. Second Place ended up with 34 pounds on swimbaits around the Tigers, and we finished third with 31 pounds cranking shallow around Veleno and Salado. So basically you can catch fish anywhere.. Just hard to cover water or fish plastics in the wind!"

Thanks for the report Jonathan!

SAPD was also in town, and they fished a paper tournament, which ain't a bad idea this time of year. I did not get final results from them..

Helotes Bass Club was also in town, and one of them caught a ten also.. See pics below..

Our water temps are currently sitting around ninety in the afternoons, and if your club is planning a trip to Falcon, a paper or weigh em in the boat approach might be a good idea. A three fish limit at the minimum should be employed.. And maybe consider weighing in a bit earlier.. Better for you and the fish..

 

I will certainly have to say, that the deep water bite has finally showed up. And lots of folks I have talked to caught fish in water deeper than fifteen feet. As is usual with this phenomena, fishing the humps, bumps, ledges, and rip rap down in front of the dam has been highly productive. I heard there were a lot of boats there trying to hide from the wind on Saturday.. And catching fish..

But similar ledges and humps in deeper waters can also hold groups of good fish. Like the Texas side at marker three.. The Tigers.. State Park Cove.. Even the Salado up here on the north end has put out some nice fish lately..

And the Veleno has had a hellova streak in the last few months.. Of course it has some of the best structure on the entire lake.. Right here one pint of gas away..

Speaking of gas.. Fill up before you get to Zapata.. They are poking our eyes out for fuel here right now.. We're $2.49..

I filled up in Alice when I was fetching my boat last week for $2.13.. Go figure..

You can spend what you save here at FLT..

Deep crankbaits have been especially good the last week or so, and it is likely to continue. Also a Carolina rig has continued to produce numbers and some quality fish as well.

Shallow action is still continuing, as there are always fish up on the windblown points here on Falcon. And that is where I like to catch em..

I'd rather piss on a spark plug than throw a deep diving crankbait, but I re-strung two long and wimpy assed crankbait rods yesterday.. And I tied on a couple of baits with bills that are about the size of a corn scoop.

A couple of years ago, this same shit happened.. Everybody catching fish on deep divers.. So I tied on five fuckin' bottom scrapers of different colors and told my self, 'I am going to throw crankbaits all friggin day...'

Two hundred and fifty casts later, I hadn't caught jack shit.. Saw a tree in four feet of water on the end of a point.. Tossed a Plum Ol Monster in its shadow and wham!.. Five pounder..

Kicked those crankbait rods overboard and never looked back..

 

I have no idea why I am setting myself up again.. But hell.. I'm a scrapper..

If I'd a quit askin, I' a never touched a titty.. (Nothing sexist about that.. Just the truth..)

When it came to asking girls out, I never ran out of pace..

Here's the biggest fish I have seen in a while. Jonathan caught this 12.10 down by the dam last Tuesday I believe..

Michael Williams caught his first DD while fishing with his son during the Helotes Bass Club tourney.. Always teaching.. Soft plastic on a Ball and Chain..

And Mike with Elite Bass Club caught this DD during their weekend visit.

The big fish have been on the bite as of late, so if you are thinking of a summer Falcon trip then now might be a good time to come.. The lake is deserted during the week.

All you have to be able to do is put up with the heat and wind.. Oh yeah and fish.. A little..

And if you do come down remember to prepare for the heat.. Sombreros were invented for a reason..

A good hat, Sunblock, shades, a facemask, gloves, radiation suit....

Well maybe not the radiation suit.. But you never know about those fuckin North Koreans..

And don't forget the water.. Lots of water.. Hydration is the key.. Beer don't count..

 

I got my boat back last Friday afternoon.. And still have not got it wet.. I spent two hours cleaning it up, in anticipation of going.. But honestly, I'm not going out there in thirty mile an hour winds..

So what are you doing in here today you might ask.. With low winds and cooler temps..

My brother is on vacay the next ten days, so I am stuck in the store.. Till Sunday at least..

And I am bored to tears.. Like I said.. There is just nobody down here..

So you fuckers need to keep me entertained.. Send me some shit to look at (not literally) that will keep me occupied..

James@FalconLakeTackle.com

If not, I am stuck shredding documents from back in 2008... Almost up to 2009..

Wonder what kind of shredder Hillary used.. Has to be faster than mine..

In any case, things are looking up around here.. Fishing is good.. We are headed into the rainy season..

Summer is finally here, and the days are long and warm..

Stop by and we'll discuss the latest in what's happening, on the lake and in the world..

And one of these days, I'll see you on the water!

June 17, 2019: Fishing remains decent around here, and for some it was really good a couple of days last week. Stringers of old days proportions were reported by a couple of Falcon long timers, as they caught a bunch of really big fish on the ledges down in front of the dam.

What they caught em on was also a bit old school, (not really) as the magnum fluke on a Carolina Rig did most of the damage.

We sold thousands of bags of them a bit back in the decade, but until recently we really had not been fishing them too much. But it is certainly time to re-visit that bait..

Deep diving cranks have also been good on similar structure. The ledges here in the Veleno put out some good fish as well, as a lot of folks had to stay close to the boat ramp the last few days, as the winds really kicked up over the weekend again.

That is not to say that the shallow bite has gone anywhere.. Still lots of fish up shallow.. And the square bill and the little brother to the mag fluke is catching them up there on the rocks.

Maybe the deeper bite is actually going to catch on for the summer.. It has been a long time coming..

One would think that with all the water they released for the last two months, that the fish would have been stacked up down in front of the gates on the ledges and humps.. There were certainly a few fish caught there, but it was never lights out..

And I am not going to say that it is now.. But on the right morning it could be.. We'll see if the trend continues..

Of course all the info I have is second hand.. Again.. Still don't have my boat back. Hopefully this week.. If all goes well and parts get delivered..

Also from what I heard, the Tigers and Salanaias are still fishing good, and a some deeper fish have been caught in those creeks as well. Tigers has more deep water than the Salanaias, and it is riddled with ridges and channel edges and humps and all kinds of good stuff.. And brush piles..

To my knowledge, no one has built brush piles in the Salanaias..

I am sure that other creeks are putting out fish as well.. But honestly, there just aren't many folks down here about now..

And I reckon that is understandable, as it has been hot and windy. The dog days are upon us. But the days of the dog are typically some of our most consistent fishing of the year..

If you can handle the heat.

The top water bite continues to amaze me as well.. I'm not sure what is up with that, but if you stick with it a while you are likely to catch some fish on the surface.

Several reports from folks that were throwing surface lures, up shallow, during the middle of the day even, caught some really nice chunks. I have a Whopper Plopper tied on but have certainly not given it a fair chance.. You probably ought to..

TPWD brought some baby bass down last week and put em in the lake.. About 320,000 of them. We scattered them out on the upper end of the lake, with the vast majority of them in the Veleno. We should have another batch coming shortly, and those fish are planned to be put in the Tigers area and points south.

No matter where the fish are planted, there is not a lot of cover for them to hide in.. Certainly nothing that you would call dense or thick. Most of the shallow cover we have is some stick ups and old bean bushes. Certainly less than optimal.

But it is what it is, and we do appreciate the efforts and money spent on our behalf. What you see in this pic is about as good as it gets.. Certainly not cormorant proof.

Man we are overdue for a year (or two) of high water and good recruitment.

The fish we are catching look really good for the most part.. There is currently no shortage of bait fish in the lake.. I guess that is why the cormorants and the white bass are also doing so good.. The only bad part is that they thrive on the lack of cover.. And we all know that a lack of cover for bass is a slow death sentence.. For a lot of the population..

 

On second thought.. I guess when death happens, it usually happens quickly.. To a bass anyway..

Well wait a minute. On third thought I reckon if you get swallowed whole by another fish or a cormorant, you are slowly suffocated and digested inside the stomach of whichever predator you got eaten by..

Hmmm. Sounds like a shitty way to die..

Like Han Solo getting digested in the belly of the Sarlacc..

"In its belly, you will find new definition of pain and suffering as you are slowly digested over a thousand years.."

{C-3PO translating for Jabba the Hutt..} (I'll admit I had to go to Bing for the quote.. It's not like it was a line from Tombstone or something..)

 

Anyway, you know there is a shit-ton of eating going on out there..24/7/365..

And stocking fish is certainly a numbers game.. It is estimated that only five percent of hatched bass make it to sexual maturity. If cover is thick and predators are few, that number can go up dramatically.. Of course bass also think bass are tasty.. And I have seen the two inch fish being stocked come out of the tanks swallowing another his size.. Course both of em are dead..

And of course that 5% number is a guess as no one can be sure of exactly what happens.. But its probably a decent guess. Like I said, the survivability of the babies can and does vary wildly..

If we get 5% out of this stocking, I'll consider it a huge success..

Of course PAW does not stock fish to increase the numbers of bass in our lakes. We stock fish to influence the genetic makeup of the overall population.

Natural spawns are incredible in number,and when the conditions are right, a lake that has sucked for years can be an incredible fishery in two years.. When the conditions are right..

I have seen several cycles of it here on Falcon in my lifetime..

And damn I am hoping for at least one more.. Not that I think the fishing sucks here, far from it.. But I know what it can be.. And we ain' there just now..

If you let me control the water level here.. I'd make you a dandy of a pond.. But we are at natures mercy on that one. It'll happen again.. Just hope I'm still able to fish when it does..

 

I hope you had a good Fathers Day.. Both of my kids live a fair piece off, and we were not able to get together.. But it's not like I never see em..

So I grilled some giant Pork Chops, had a few beers and watched some golf..

Do you ever watch golf?? It is the best way to nap on a Sunday afternoon.. And occasionally I am awakened by the roar of the crowd and I do see some of the action..

And while the US Open is one of the biggest tournaments of the year, it was still some fairly boring golf.. Till about dark.. They should outlaw golf in California anyway..

But I digress..

One thing about all the golf announcers that drives me crazy is the use of the the adjective; "pace".

When clearly they should be using the "noun" speed.. It could also be a subject..

When I hear them say that "The the shot ran out of pace", it makes me crazy..

When you're a lexicographer like me, this shit will send you into convulsions..

A rolling ball does not run out of pace.. It looses speed.. It was not hit speedily enough.. It never had enough speed.. It had way too much frickin' speed... It quit rolling.. But it did not run out of pace..

It could have been hit at an improper pace. But the fucker does not run out of "pace"..

And unless them guys in the booth are talking about picante or hot sauce they need not use the word again when describing the "speed" of a rolling golf ball..

 

Slow news day..

Well I'll just have to mute the TV when golf is on, because "pace" is the word of the decade from the broadcast booth..

"The flag is just greenside of the left bunker, just seven paces from the back of the putting surface.."

Listen, I don't want to have to do a fuckin math lesson when I am watching golf.. Just say the hole is twenty one fuckin feet from the back of the green..

I heard some foreign accent announcer say that a players ball was right up against the "cush".. Meaning he was up against the second cut.. Against a bit of taller grass..

I'll bet you $20 dollars this will be the next catch word used by golf announcers..

There are a hundred paces I could go with "Your balls are up against the cush.."

But I'm gonna let it lie..

I hope to have my balls resting on the seat of my boat by weeks end.. And if the water is rough, I may need to put some cush underneath them..

Cause wind or no, I need to get my ass back on the water.

Hope to see you there!

June 12, 2019: I was sure I had written something about four days ago.. Double that and some.. Time flies when you're having fun.. Or not having fun.. Or you're busy..

Or your just aging faster every day.. That's for sure..

We had a hot spell set on us last week, with several days of high temps near 110°.. And some days there was very little wind and the humidity was off the hook..

Hottern' your girlfriend's little sister..

But we had a Norther' blow in over the weekend, like most all of Texas did, and it turned things back to tolerable.. Of course the North Wind is the spawn of Zephyr with a westerly influence and when that happens it can also make a few bumps on the lake.

Which is not uncommon this time of year.. But it is usually because of a southeast wind..

The unsettled weather also created a few rain showers in our area but we only garnered about a half inch during the whole ordeal, which saw the Valley and areas north of us get some nice rains..

Say it with me.. Chihuahuan Desert...

That's where we live.

Taking ten feet of water out of Amistad and six or seven out of us is still not enough water to appease the water hogs down south.. And they are still letting a significant amount of water out of Falcon.. Currently the US is releasing most of the water going out the pipe..

We have fallen to 271.06, which equates to about thirty feet low.. We still have plenty of water to play in and on, but it is a shame to see the same old thing every year..

Tons of baby fish.. And then releasing the hounds on them by sucking the water off the cover..

Some things never get old.. Like most of the baby bass..

The cormorants, gar, and white bass are doing fine..

Speaking of baby bass, PAW should be delivering some down here most any time.. But I have not gotten that phone call yet..

My boat is still in the shop, but a buddy did take mercy on me last Friday and took me out for a few hours. And we did not travel too far and managed to catch a handfull of bass and a plethora of white bass..

We caught fish on everything we threw, including spinnerbaits, squarebills, and soft plastics.. I'm telling you that a W/M Red lizard will catch fish.. For the tenth time..

The fish we caught were shallow.. We did fish out to fifteen feet on a few drops with no luck.. And I am hearing the same story from 90% of the fishermen that I have talked to..

A lot of us want the fish to pile up out deep.. But if it is happening, me and a bunch of other folks have not seen it..

As a matter of fact, if it is possible, the fish may have gone even shallower.. A buddy of mine was digging an armadillo out of a hole on the edge of a creek .. And after he got the National Road Kill of Texas out, he saw something else in the hole..

Yep.. A four pounder.. Said it had two ticks on em'..

 

Water temps are not to boiling yet, with most places registering the middle eighties.. And that is truly where Falcon fish like it.. And it is the the temp where they are most active..

The fish and the weather are truly Jalapeno..

I was out of town Sunday and Monday, but the folks I talked to yesterday and this morning have also confirmed what I have stated above..

If you want to catch any numbers, fish shallow..

And I'll reiterate, fish your way out points.. Start shallow and work your way out to eight feet or so and move on. Any hardwood or laydown up on the shallowest of points or banks can a have a fish laying in the shade..

Long story short, not a lot has changed..

 

I was reading a thread on the TFF about how fishing in the state of Texas has changed over the years. And I guess you could say the fishing has changed, but more than that, it is the conditions that have changed, and are ever changing.

Not only are there exponentially more fishermen than ever before, which adds pressure, noise pollution, extraction, mortality, education, relocation, and the urge to roam to the fish population; these fishermen are equipped with the latest in cutting edge technology to help them locate and catch fish.

Which is probably the single biggest "game changer" in the big picture.. Technology..

Who would have known that those guys in a garage all those years ago, combining some 1's and 0's, would totally rewrite the way we fish today.

Mapping, Sonar, GPS, Sidescan, Downscan, Livescope, Spotlock, Power Poles.. The internet...

And a host of other stuff I can't remember.. Not to mention new bait technologies and finishes..

We should be catching fish like crazy..

But it all goes back to one thing.. Even if you can find the fish.. See the fish.. Know what depth he's at..

You still gotta trick him into biting your bait..

And even though this is a dumb animal, with a brain the size of a pea, with no ability to reason, his basic instinct is what keeps him alive.. And instinct is one powerful tool..

And often times it is enough to defeat the well equipped and skilled angler..

Happens to me all the time..

Ever wonder how many fish look at your lure down there?

 

All I know is that fishing will always be fishing.. There will never be a sure fire day when you are going out there with a guarantee that you are going to kick their ass..

Does it happen? Sure.. And with dedication and devotion you can make it happen more often.

But there ain't never going to be no guarantee that it is going to happen..

That's why it is called fishin.. Not catchin..

And I think that is what drives most of us to keep going back..

 

One thing I DO know is that fishing beats the shit outta working.. I've tried em both..

And though my brain is also the size of a pea, that's a discernation I can easily make.. Maybe that's instinct..

But it is a No Brainer!

So I suggest you quit that workin shit, even temporarily, and get your ass down here..

Hopefully I'll have my boat back this week.. And I'll see you on the water..

June 4, 2019: It's been fairly busy around here.. Compared to the last month when the wind howled like a pack of Coyotes.. It's funny how people will actually come to fish when there aren't four foot waves all over the lake.

We've got a couple of groups in town, including some old friends from Shreveport.. And they are just getting started on a few days of Falcon fishing.

A few years ago one night we wore out two sets of Black Diamonds and drank up all the tequila in Zapata.. Glad that shit is just a good/bad memory..

Back when I thought the caps on Hornitos were single use items..

 

Last weekend we had a few boats on the water, and on Sunday, the Laredo Bass Club had their monthly outing here on Falcon. I hear that twenty one or two pounds won it, but I don't have much more detail than that.

Most of the other folks that I have talked to are still saying that the fish are shallow.. Very shallow.

I have also heard that there are a few better fish out a bit deeper, but the numbers of fish out there are still not big.

Schooling fish can be happened on just about anywhere on the lake. Most of these schools of chasing fish are not giant packs but threes and sixes or so.. Sometimes you can catch em all.. Sometimes they won't bite anything you throw in there.

But sometime it s like throwing a weenie on Rosie's desk.. That fucker is going to have some teeth marks in it pretty damn quick..

But a square bill or a fluke are good things to chunk at em.. DO NOT leave the ramp without a shad colored squarebill on the deck..

One area of the lake that has been particularly good this spring has been the Veleno.. Maybe it is because it has been too damn windy to fish anywhere else. I dunoo..

But it is a good place to start and there is a ton of rocky, bluffy, ledgey structure here in the home creek that will rival any creek on the lake.. It is funny that a lot of us think we have to haul ass somewhere to fish.. When truthfully we could just drop the TM and go to it..

If there is a predominant bait around here, I am gonna guess it is still the squarebill.. And we have sold more of them than any other hard bait as of late.

A fluke or a smaller soft plastic, even baits that can be fished on a shakey head or wobble head like the Fighting Frog, have been good dragged on rocky points and hopped down slopes..

Not all the fish are on the bank, but most of them ain't too far from it. And if you cover hard bottom from one out to six or eight feet, odds are that you are going to run into a bunch of fish.

I also hear that deeper rockpiles and old foundations are holding some fish. A lot of those rocks are bait eating machines.. But that's why we're here..

A deep diving crankbait bounced gently over the rocks can get you bit. Color does not seem to be super important, but if your bait has a hint of yellow or chartreuse on it that is not a bad thing..

 

All of this info is second hand, as my rig is still awaiting parts. Actually I guess it is me awaiting parts. We need to move this on.. I ain't getting no younger..

Hope to have my boat back early next week.. I hope..

We have our first gulf threat in the Bay Of Campeche.. And although it looks like it won't be a real rainmaker for us, maybe it is a sign that.. Well a sign of something..

Looks like all the rain will head towards Houston.. Again.. Like they need it..

I'm telling you that a gulf hurricane just cannot bring rain to our watershed.. The physical shape of the coast, the Mexican mountains, and the wet side always being to the NE just can't get it done..

But as I type Del Rio is getting pounded by a thunderstorm.. What we need is a low to settle out west and drown all the rattlesnakes and lizards along the Rio Grande.. Below Amistad..

We have gotten lucky the last two years with rains between us and Del Rio.. And hopefully that pattern will hold up another year.. The Mexicans surely aren't passin' us any water from the Conchos..

But they are sending us plenty of other motherfuckers.. Wonder how long we are going to allow this bullshit to keep happening..

There's a segue for you.. Water to illegal immigrants all in one sentence.. Or two..

Evidently the word is out.. All over the world.. The gates to America are open..

Yall come..

Haven't all these people heard how bad it is here in America? Evidently they don't have CNN and CNBC where they come from..

And as they come, they bring empty bellies, empty wallets, diseases that were once wiped out in America, and few skills that can contribute to American society..

And we keep borrowing trillions so we can give it away..

What's wrong with this picture..

I don't give a fuck which side of the political isle you are on.. Our federal government is out of control..

And I think the finger has done gone thru the paper on this one..

I love the old saying about, "Spending money like a drunken sailor."

At least the drunken sailor was spending his own money..

Where will it all end? Will it all end? When will it all end?

 

I'm not ready to don the sandwich sign that says, "The End Is Near!" just yet..

But my paint should be dry in an hour or so..

 

Well get your ass down here and visit us before the whole damn thing unwinds..

And I'll see you on the water... errr.. More likely here in the shop...

Till I get my boat back!!

May 31, 2019: The end of the month is here, and it has expired just about the same time as my tolerance for the wind. The only thing that has made it bit more tolerable is that my boat is in the shop..

Actually the wind has layed a bit the last couple of days, and fishing locations have greatly expanded to include mid lake and open water areas.. Believe it or not..

And today is pretty fishable as well..

Yesterdays reported catches ranged from twenty to thirty plus fish per boat, with a few nice fish caught as well.. But mostly two to four pound fish. And mean as a snake they are..

Any soft plastic can catch a fish.. As can any crankbait.

But basically nothing has changes when it comes to bait choices. Flukes, Ol Monsters, lizards.. Rage Craws..

Lotsa folks are using a C-rig I hear..

The 6-XD is a good bait on the ends of points and on rockpiles in deeper water.

This ain't rocket surgery.. It is basic Falcon fishing..

Lots of folks have reported schooling fish at some time during the day. These fish are mostly in the two to three pound range, but once in a while a big son-of-a-bitch will be in there with em.

A square bill or lipless crankbait should always be on the deck and at the ready for when this happens.. And if you can get a bait in their general vicinity within a few seconds, odds are that you are going to catch one of these slashers.. Sometimes you can catch several before they retreat to the depths.. And sometimes when you are reeling one in there will be several swimming along with the one you got hooked.. Chunk another bait in there amongst them if you really want to complicate things..

I don't mean your partner.. I mean you..

 

Yes folks it is summertime fishing on Falcon. It ain't that difficult..

What is a bitch as of late is the humidity that we have has to deal with. Middle upper nineties and 50% humidity ain't something we are used to around here..

This is supposed to be a desert.. Cactus.. Sand.. Rattlesnakes.. Dust..

So be prepared when you come.. Stay hydrated. Wear sun protection.. And raise you're hand if you're sure..

There was some good rain north of us last night.. But it did not make it this far south.. Maybe we'll get it one of these days.. We are sucking so far this year.. To date we have had 4.1 inches here at the shop.

And unless you are a cactus or a rattlesnake.. It is hard to get by on that..

The summer has been good to us lately when it comes to rainfall. And I am hoping for the same this year. We need some insurance claims along the Rio Grande in the next few months..

The National Weather Service has the Hurricane Center page up and running.. Nothing out there just yet.. But before too long I hope to see some activity out in the Pacific.. It is from where all good things come..

We due, Baby..

 

Bass Champs is out at Amistad this weekend, so it should not be too busy around here, although we have seen a few boats pull in today. Should be a pretty good weekend for it.

Speaking of Amistad, TPWD stocked largemouth bass out there about two weeks ago.. And we should be getting some fish before too long as well.

So pray for rain, light winds, a parasitic infection for the cormorants, and an endless supply of Kitchen Passes for this summer..

And get your ass down here when you have a window of opportunity..

See you on the water.. If I ever get my boat back..

May 25, 2019: Jeez Louise.. Is this gale ever gonna stop? If you wanted to do a remake of Twister then Zapata would be a good place to shoot it.. You could just replace the flying cows with gar..

"Gar! We've got gar!"

Maybe I'll open a surf shop..

And of course with the presence of the wind and waves we have had an absence of fishermen and fisherwomen. Of course we do have a few, very few, folks out there challenging Darwin's theory on survival of the fittest..

And we are damn glad to have em..

Finding a protected place to fish is as challenging as the fishing itself. And the few boats that are out there are pretty much all fishing the Texas side, not choosing to make the run across the lake or down the lake to the Mexican side.

This shit is one of the major reasons that I do not guide.. I fished enough bad weather days when I used to tournament fish.. Some fond memories indeed..

But despite of the challenging conditions, a few fish are still being caught. Methods and baits have changed little if any since my last report. But fishing points and drop offs are still the best places to catch fish. And inside of fifteen feet is still the most productive I hear.

I'm gonna try and get out tomorrow if there is any reprieve at all in the wind..

 

This of course is Memorial Day weekend, and there are a few folks that have a three day weekend that ignored the weather forecasts and came on down anyway. Can't say I blame them, especially if they already had the kitchen pass issued.

Is it sexist to use the word kitchen pass? It probably is.. But wouldn't that term, and the issuance of a kitchen pass by said kitchen pass issuer, imply or suggest that the issuer was in charge?

And I am certainly not implying that the man of the house is in charge.. Or the woman of the house is.. But I'll bet one of em is..

I gotta quit trying to over think things..

I have been married for almost forty years, (same woman) and I am thinking one of us is a saint.. But I ain't sure which one.. These days my goal is peaceful co-existence..

But anyway, like I said, it is Memorial Day weekend..

And while for most it is a three day weekend, and the official start of summer, and I can't deny those things; it is first and foremost intended to be a time to remember those that have given their lives to this Nation of ours, and reflect on the incredible sacrifices that thousands upon thousands have made.

Many of you out there have had your lives directly affected by the loss of a family member in service to our Country, and I cannot begin to feel the pain, sorrow, and anger, that your family has endured..

And for the most part, all I can say to you, is Thank You.

And to those that served, and you that are currently serving, my hat is off to you as well..

And know that I, and many others like me, hold you and your family in the highest regard.

And in today's times, where many US citizens are self loathing, and think that America is not the shining beacon of freedom and hope that has set a two hundred year plus example of what freedom is, and freedom means, I say to you; Get the fuck out of the USA..

Go find your utopia somewhere else.. We'll see how long it takes you to come crawling back..

Go down to Central America where all these refugees are coming from. There ought to be plenty of places you can buy cheap.. See how that shit suits you..

We are imperfect to be sure.. But show me a place where there is more opportunity, and the freedom to pursue your desires and dreams, and I'll kiss your ass..

In front of Wal-Mart.. And I'll give you thirty minutes to draw a crowd..

 

Whatever you do this weekend, take a little time out to remember those that did go before us, and if you are the parent of some younguns, maybe take a little time to explain a little portion of what this holiday is all about.

And enjoy your time off.. I guarantee you that the ones who gave their lives for our way of life would want you to..

See you on the water!

May 21, 2019: It's been windy, hot, and muggy around here.. But out of the three, only the wind can keep you from catching fish..

I don't care if you've got balls like Bonzo, that wind and waves the last few days will beat you down.. And keep your feet wet.. And run your bilge pumps..

And when you're old and grumpy like me, it's hard to hitch it up on those days.. Even though I am aware that I am probably in the fourth quarter of life, and I've only got so many days left to fish.. If it ain' the fourth, it's damn sure late in the third..

But today was a day of reprieve.. We have a kinda light north wind blowing .. With highs predicted to be about 103°..

That don't make sense..

But a reprieve in wind speed and direction gave me the opportunity to get out for a bit, although I do hate north wind..

At least it ain't a cold north wind..

I stopped on a couple of rocky points with good depth next to them, and proceeded to have myself a good time.

I caught a fish on my first cast, third cast, and on my fourth cast I hooked one that was taking drag, and the son of a bitch wrapped me up on something.. Although I had em on for a bit.. I couldn't get him out and finally broke em off.. And lost my favorite fish catching square bill.. Of course I got a lot more like it..

But sometimes it seems like a bait is just a special one that for some reason catches more fish than one that looks just like it..

Fuck if I know.. It's like picking out a tomato.. Or a watermelon.. Or a hooker.. You just don't know how good it is going to be till you sink your teeth into it.. (or insert metaphor here)

Anyway I had probably caught fifty fish on that bait.. But like The Rolling Stones said.. It's all over now..

Lucky for me these fish did not give a shit as I chunked out a watermelon red lizard.. With Spike it on the tail of course.

And proceeded to catch the shit out of em..

I have been fishing Falcon and Mexico for a long time.. And I am used to the way these fish fight.. But I'm gonna tell you that these bastards are about as jacked up as I have ever seen them.

They like warm water, and we are around eighty degrees, and these fish are loving it and they will try to pull you out of the boat.

And while there are some deeper fish out there, (and I don't usually fish for them) these fish were in water from two to six feet deep. My biggest fish was about a four pounder, but I caught several in that range. I did not put a scale on any of them.

As a matter of fact, I have not felt the urge to weigh any of them lately.. And you are right.. I am way overdue for a picture fish..

 

Last weekend there were a few small bass clubs in town, and they were heavily hampered by the wind. Especially on Saturday. I heard of a 8.90 caught, and stringers to fifteen and sixteen pounds, but that is not official.

And I did not hear anything about Sunday. Senkos were good, as were swimbaits on a underspin I hear.. I bet I could catch em on an underspin where I was catching them this morning on a crankbait..

Yeah, but I ain't about to tie one of them fuckers on.. I ain't eatin no tofu either.. I don't know why that underspin shit seems so queer to me.. I just cain't do it..

 

If you are a gar hunter, you need to get your ass down here.. The main lake pockets are loaded, with lots of five to six footers cruising the shallows.. And rolling out on the big water..

The white bass are starting to school up out in open water, and where you run into the birds you can catch them on anything. When they go deep, a jigging spoon will catch em real good.

Crappie are good on brush piles, and rod and reel catfish are good up the river.. Some bigguns have been caught on a big chunk of cut shad.. Bring your cast net..

If you like fishing, and you ain't here.. Well you're probably fuckin' up..

 

People are always asking me, what is the best time of the year to fish Falcon.. And I always say, The middle of summer.. Ain't nothing changed..

I look for more and more schooling action as the summer rolls on..

I haven't heard too much about topwater the last few days.. But flukes, lizards, (although I seem to be the only one throwing one) senkos, and magnum trick worms, are all good plastics to be throwing.

Sexy Shad squarebills and anything with some green/yellow in it are working well. I can't tell you much about the deeper fish.. But from what I hear there are not a lot of fish out in twenty feet of water.. I ain't saying there aren't any..

I'm just sayin.. Drag your c-rig out to fifteen and start over..

Aw shit, do whatever you want.. And let me know if you catch em out deeper..

The cormorants are nesting in a lot of places in bushes surrounded by water.. The egrets are mixed right in there with them.

So stop by for your free three foot piece of 3/4 pvc..

Saw a Chicken Hawk eating a baby cormorant the other day.. Bout brought a fuckin tear to my eye..

 

In their effort to improve our e-mail service, our hosting company migrated us to a new e-mail server.. You might recall that a couple of years ago they migrated our site to a new server.. What a shit show that was.. Took me three months to make all my pages re-appear..

When I would call and bitch, they would tell me to have my IT guy give them a call.. When I told them that they were talking to my IT guy things only got worse..

I hate computer shit.. I have a interface product as big as the state of Texas, and am working in a postage stamp sized area of the program.. And I don't want to learn any new tricks..

In any case if you have been trying to e-mail me or Tom, and have had no luck or got no response.. It ain't cause I ain't trying..

Call if you really need something.. Or hell just call to keep us awake.. Or if you need to e-mail me something or Tom something just send it to: NoWeighers@aol.com

Till I get this shit fixed..

AOL may suck.. But they do have a bullet proof e-mail system..

Get your sunblock and wind block and come see us.. And hopefully I'll see you on the water..

May 17, 2019: For not doing much I sure have been busy.. Rat killin.. It's always something.. Besides trying to run a business.. And fish a little..

And it's been damn little.. Despite of the good fishing reports I keep hearing.

Numbers of fish have been decent, with reports scattered all over the board. Some folks have happened on a couple of different schools of fish during the day and caught the shit out of two to four pound fish.. But more two's I am sure..

But they are jacked up and mean and will try to pull out of the boat..

I fished on Wednesday with a buddy and we caught about fifteen or eighteen fish, and none of them were over three and a half pounds..

Most were caught on squarebills, and watermelon red lizards. A squarebill with some chartrusey-green hue really worked well. Of course dipping the tail of the lizard in chartreuse was a must..

And 90% of the fish we caught were in five feet of water or less.. But you gotta remember who you're talking to..

 

Most of the guides are also saying that the majority of fish they are catching are coming from shallow water. And the topwater bite continues to impress as well. A whopper Plopper or a spook are good choices.

I don't know where this topwater bite came from.. And it is a dimension that we usually don't exist in.. But it is fun when it is happening..

A super fluke on a Carolina rig is also catching fish. Long points and shallow humps and ridges have been good places to target..

Deeper crankbaits have also been catching some fish. The same areas as with the C-rigs.. Ten to fifteen feet seems to be the most productive ranges.. Not hearing of anything deeper..

In any case, fishing is still fishing here on Falcon, and if you go out there and bust it you ar gonna catch some fish.. Maybe a bunch if you find the schools of fish.

We did see several small groups of fish chasing shad on Wednesday.. And if you can get a squarebill anywhere near them within a few seconds.. Odds are you are going to catch that fish..

Also on Wednesday, I had a strange thing happen.. The first fish of the day I hooked on a squarebill.. On a rockpile in Pierces..

As I got the fish up to the boat I saw that it was about a one pound bluegill.. A monster.. And in hot pursuit of this fish was a six or seven pound bass. So I left the fish in the water and the bass made a few bumps at the perch, but there is no way he could have swallowed this fucker..

So I had my partner throw some shit at him.. But he wasn't buying it.. Strange.. And he was on top of the water for ten seconds..

The big water releases from Amistad have subsided, but there is still a decent flow of water in the river. Falcon is actually rising a bit, but nothing to get excited about. We are sitting at 273.65, and that is within a few inches of where we were a couple of weeks ago, but a foot lower that we were a month ago..

Hopefully we are through with the big water releases for this spring. The valley has had a shit load of rain.. I have no idea what they are doing with all this water.. Said the same thing last year..

We need a water transfer system from north and east Texas.. Said that for the last five years..

There are a coupe of bass clubs in town this weekend. And I'll get a report or two from them for sure..

And I'll pass along what I hear.. But overall fishing is pretty good.

Come get you some..