lower Frio bass

Non-Trout pursuits

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Ron Mc
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lower Frio bass

Post by Ron Mc » Wed Mar 25, 2009 9:52 am

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3 of us went out - we caught a silly number of fish, and you should have seen the ones that got away...
Ron Mc

Alex Argyros
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Post by Alex Argyros » Wed Mar 25, 2009 10:27 am

A river bass is a beautiful creature.

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Ron Mc
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Post by Ron Mc » Wed Mar 25, 2009 10:35 am

the south Texas scrub was pretty cool, too.
although I wouldn't want to repeat this outing in the middle of summer - or at least would do it differently.

and a couple of Rob's photos
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Ron Mc

Jimbo Roberts
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Post by Jimbo Roberts » Wed Mar 25, 2009 11:17 am

Man those fish look great! The Frio looks pretty low even for this time of year. Where you fishing south of 90? We are going to have to find some water to fish this coming summer out west. If we don't get any rain the Guadalupe tailrace section is going to look like the Cibolo Creek. I am getting worried.
Jimbo

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Ron Mc
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Post by Ron Mc » Wed Mar 25, 2009 11:20 am

Jimbo, we were right below the aquifer recharge zone, and that part of the river - all the rivers and creeks along there - only has continuous surface flow in monsoon years.
What you're looking at is a bit drier than normal, but it's still normal for that part of the river.

how long have you lived here, Jimbo? The Guadalupe stopped in 1955 - we haven't seen anything that bad yet. The northern fringe of the hill country is getting Big rain as you are reading this.
http://www.intellicast.com/National/Nex ... imate=true

http://waterdata.usgs.gov/tx/nwis/uv/?s ... 0065,00060
It won't be long we'll be listening to everybody complain about not being able to fish for the high flows.

Here is a blue hole where the Sabinal comes back above ground - it was dry for miles above this pool.
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it's also deeper than it looks - the shelf on the left is about 8' deep.
There was a 10-lb bass drifting up and down around that shelf - but he knew our social security numbers.
Up in the remote section of the Frio we were hiking, we broke off more than a few 8-10-lb. bass - they weren't quite so smart about striking but when they shot off into the lumber, there was no stopping them
Ron Mc

Jimbo Roberts
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Post by Jimbo Roberts » Wed Mar 25, 2009 4:14 pm

I certainly was born before 1955 (1952) but I wasn't doing any fishing back in 55. The rain is certainly starting to pop along the dryline right now. I don't think it's a question of when as it is how much!
I can vouch for any Bass over 5lbs, much less 10lbs, as being able to go where it wants those first moments of them striking. My biggest on a Flyrod is about 7 1/2lbs. But I've caught them up to 11.25lbs on conventional tackle. I did have one on a 9wt. HMG flyrod at a friend of mine's property 20 years ago. We saw it jump right after striking a Deer Hair Popper and it was about 9-10lbs. It got the best of me. I was using 12lb tippet and I put too much pressure on the fish trying to keep it out of a wood pile and ended up bending the hook out and it getting away. yeah..... I know..... I know..... Just another fishy story about the "Big One" that got away. Jimbo

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Ron Mc
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Post by Ron Mc » Wed Mar 25, 2009 4:32 pm

all part of the fun - I would rather catch the 150 little bass on a 5-wt. and have a hoot, losing the 8- & 10-lbers (occasionally catching one), than not enjoy the 150 12-inchers just so I can horse the 10-lber on an 8- or 9-wt.
Besides, when you do land the 9-lber on a 5/6-wt rod, it's even sweeter
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Ron Mc

Jimbo Roberts
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Post by Jimbo Roberts » Wed Mar 25, 2009 11:25 pm

Of course, I want to do both too.
It's rarely obtainable, but something to Shoot For!
It's not unique to say that "what I love about fishing starts when the fish is hooked", but it absolutely the truth for everyone or at the very least more fun.
Now most stituations when you are fighting a fish, any fish, the angler has the upper hand. It's what our equipment is designed to do. But there are times when: the size of the fish, the swiftness of the current, inablity to follow the fish, the relatively lighter tippet, rocks, wood, and other things that could break you off, a million other things, these are the challenges that make winning such a fight so meaningful.
I know I can't catch them all, but it doesn't feel any better when I lose one, any one of them! It leaves me thinking of what I did and how I could have changed it to land the fish. Then next time I encounter a fish that fights this way, I will be ready with a different tactic to see if it works any better. When I win such battles I come away a little better equiped to land them all. And by landing them all I therefore will have brought to hand all the "Big Ones" too.
Jimbo

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Ron Mc
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Post by Ron Mc » Thu Mar 26, 2009 7:11 am

last summer, I hooked up a 25-lb. black buffalo on a Tonka Queen and 1917 Hardy - the fish porpoised for 10 minutes and made two trips into the backing.
Not once did I ever have the upper hand and when the fish spit the hook, it was fine with me. I've described it before as 10 minutes of extreme fish violence. Yes, it was a hoot.


Even the 28" largemouth above (and below), which made 3 trips into the backing, my advantage was experience, certainly not tackle. I gave up "advantage tackle" years ago when it made me jaded to catching fish. The reel is a 1933 click-pawl Medalist (made before the 1938 patent drag) - the drag was the handle dragging on belly once every rev, and pinching the line between my fingers. I had to turn the fish before it made it into the ruella on it's second and longest run. I always fish 3X tippet in the hill country.
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and of course this and its slightly larger sibling two summers ago when I was tossing streamers to check a hole for trout
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just before I netted the larger fish, however,
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the size 10 hook broke

hey Jimbo, check that intellicast link - big rain is on the way
Ron Mc

beauju
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Post by beauju » Thu Mar 26, 2009 3:17 pm

Has anyone fished the Frio around Concan?
Bo

Jimbo Roberts
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Post by Jimbo Roberts » Thu Mar 26, 2009 6:19 pm

Just a quarter inch at our house today. I think most of the upper Guadalupe Basin received about the same. Most of the heavy rains were from the southwest to southeast of the basin.
Those are great pictures of the Bass you caught at "******* ********". I wish I had a picture of the one I caught there myself which was conservatively 6-7lbs. I need to go back there and talk to the land owner and see if we can get in there to fish again.
Jimbo

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Ron Mc
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Post by Ron Mc » Thu Mar 26, 2009 9:19 pm

Bo, most of the Frio along Concan is impounded, so you pretty much need to kayak or float-tube to fish it.
Most of the bass that way are also Guadalupes.
It seems on most the western rivers that Guadalupes are predominant north of Hwy 90, and largemouths south of the highway.

And not a hard-and-fast rule, because that 28" largemouth in the photo above came from north of Hwy 90, but I also found a Guadalupe that was probably 5-lbs. that day (I got over-confident and broke him off when he was heading for rocks)
Ron Mc

beauju
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Post by beauju » Fri Mar 27, 2009 11:42 am

Thanks Ron--- I have axcess about mile up from the bridge.
What would be good flies on this section of river.
Bo

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Ron Mc
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Post by Ron Mc » Fri Mar 27, 2009 12:32 pm

the water is so clear I would be throwing brown cats whiskers, or green/gray
You want subtle minnow-looking flies in blend colors
Ron Mc

gdsanders
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Post by gdsanders » Sat Mar 28, 2009 1:28 am

Great photos as usual. Blew my ACL a couple of weeks ago, so fishing is "postponed" for a while, so these photo posts are an escape for me.

I love that one shot with the high bank. Looks like a good place to hook up with a nice one.

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