Thursday, July 26, 2012

"Fishing can make a real idiot out of you"

I have been checking out a site called Lone Star Chronicles recently. Great photography, and good outdoors stories and info. This is a recent image from Lake Tawakoni, just east of Dallas.
I've been to Tawakoni.

One of the dumbest things I ever did was on Lake Tawakoni. I had an old Lone Star ski boat, the 1959 model with the fins on it like a Cadillac, that had caught fire and destroyed the seats and canopy, everything inside, even the windshield. It was gutted, no motor, and I bought it on the trailer for 100 bucks. I had a 15 horse for it sitting in my garage. I loaded this piece of shit boat up with all sorts of amenities, seats, depth finder, trolling motor, about 1000 dollars worth.

It leaked a little; after a few hours there would be a couple inches of water in the bottom. I would have to pull the plug and run full speed across the lake to get the water out.
One day at Tawakoni I was doing just that when I came across a school of sand bass. I cut the engine, hopped up onto the hood, and started fishing away. I couldn’t get anything to hit, changed lures, and tried some more. Changed lures again, and about that time I noticed the boat was tilted to starboard a bit unnaturally, and I looked down and I had about two feet of water in the boat. It was almost to the gunwales.
Crap! The Plug! In alI the excitement, I had forgot the plug
Another minute or two, and I’d have lost her.
Fishing can make a real idiot out of you.

And the best part? This isn’t even the story I was going to tell you.
Apparently, given time to recollect, I’ve done TWO really dumb things on Tawakoni.
What I was going to tell you was the first time I went to Tawakoni I had a brand new 15 horse motor, but no boat. My girl and I went to Tawakoni and rented a john boat at a little campground, and fished up by the dam. In a little cove up there, I lost my prop on a stump. We floated to shore, found a 10 foot length of 2X8 to use as a rudder, and a big branch to fashion a sail with from our ponchos. The wind was with us, out of the Southeast; we could sail two miles across the body of the lake, and with the rudder and a little luck, just might make it back to the campground.

But the thing is, it was a stormy day. No one was on the lake, and it was misting rain. That’s why we had the ponchos. Out there on the body of the lake, a squall somewhat (a lot) larger than the one picture above kicked up, and the next thing I knew we were trying to sail a john boat with about a four foot following sea.
I felt pretty stupid, and a little scared, but the gods were with us that day. We made it across, and landed right smack dab in the middle of our campground


Martijn said...

Your stories always have an uplifting effect on me, even when you tell tales of disaster & destruction. You are the stuff legends are made of!

I once went sailing with a friend of mine who had just bought a sailing boat and didn't know how to sail. 'Let's find out with my buddy Martijn' he thought. We did found out, and managed to learn sailing that afternoon, while getting black & blue and bloody from all the kicks and scratches we got. Thanks for reminding me with your boating story!

Bert said...

Great story...I think we all have them in one form or another. Thanks for mentioning Lone Star Chronicles. Appreciate the kind words...

red dirt girl said...

gorgeous photo! are you sure that's in TEXAS ???!!

love your stories, cowboy. i've got a dumb in a boat on a big lake story too. Just not really the time to tell it. Maybe one day.


bulletholes said...

I've got a couple more Red, probably tell them this week now that I'm on it.

Thanks for coming by Bert!

sailing is cool stuff Mart. i'd like to take it up someday....there is a whole field of knowledge that comes with it.