Catching Ain’t Everything

By Capt. James McManus

As I am writing this, it’s the middle of July and have just come in from two fruitless days fishing on Carter’s lake in Georgia. It reminded me that there are a lot of factors that play into successful trips. First it was my initial trip here and even with all my electronics, I was basically flying blind. Going from the headwaters to the dam, stopping and looking, I marked very few fish, a little bait and what I did mark wasn’t biting.

Being July in Georgia means it was hot and it was following a “cold front,” which I think was misnamed and didn’t help, so strike two. If it was ten years ago I would have probably realized that night fishing would have been the better option but staying up past sundown is almost impossible these days.

The final nail in the coffin was that I had an idea about how I was going to catch fish. Heading the list were walleyes, and in this season a long, long time ago, on my home lake of Fontana, we would have trolled points and mid-lake channels, flats and bluff walls and loaded the boat. This lakes’ topography is similar, so I tried all my old tactics, none of which worked. What this all told me is that no matter how proficient you may be, every lake and every season is unique. As much as I was confident in finding fish, a better choice would have been to hire a guide. That is, if my main goal was to bring home supper.

Because the fishing was slow, there was almost no boat traffic. The lake was beautiful, and early and late the weather was tolerable. Just being on the water with family is enough reason to return. Another season, and I know the fish would be more cooperative, but nothing wrong with enjoying what the good Lord has provided. Catching ain’t always the measure of a successful trip so keep that in mind, later, Capt. James.

Capt. James McManus owns 153 Charters. Give him a call for a great day on the water at (828) 421-8125