A day well spent
What do you do when all your plans fall through and you have no one to do anything with? I went fishing. Alone. At Fort Cobb Lake in western Oklahoma.
I decided on Friday to go. My wife told me she was "on call" all weekend and likely would be at work all day on Saturday and Sunday. Both "Diet Mountain Drew" and RovErica were in Missouri doing church stuff. Janie had mentioned Lecia and Justin would be disappointed I was going to be at the house all weekend. They thought I was going to be gone all weekend. Originally I was scheduled to be shooting some more scenes for the History Channel all weekend. But when those plans fell through, I was stuck with nothing to do. So I picked a lake that was relatively close, yet somewhere I had never been.
I didn’t even bring my fishing pole. I thought, "I'll just grab the tackle box, and stop at a Walmart or somewhere and get my license and a new pole." I passed the last Walmart I was to see when I left Newcastle. So with virtually no fishing store outlets between home and the lake, I was a little discouraged. My last chance was in Nowhere, Oklahoma. I'm not making that up...that's the real name of this "town". The town consists of a little convenience store/bait shop. And a couple of trailers.
So I stopped in and I got my license and bought his only fishing pole and some worms. I drove down to Sycamore Camping Area and set up next to the dam.
As I walked down to the water there were probably 20 fish in the shallows sunning themselves. All sizes. I saw a couple of 2-3 pound catfish. Sunfish from minnow to 1-2 pound. And a couple of fish out about 20 feet that I couldn’t identify. As I was just standing there in the water a 2-3 pound small mouth bass swam right up to my feet.
I figured, I couldn’t miss. So I cast out and back twice. Then I cast out past the two big fish that were on the surface. I reeled in to where I had last saw them and POW.
I finally got the large mouth bass in to the shore. He quit fighting when I got him at the point I could grab him. I think he was just waiting for me to get close. As I reached down to grab his mouth with the skill of Jet Li from the movie Kiss of the Dragon, that bass flicked and stuck the hook in my thumb. Payback I guess.
I got him up and was holding him with both hands and I was thinking, “what a great fish”. As you can see he was longer than my forearm. And I would estimate 9 or 10 pounds. By far the largest fish I've ever caught.
I looked to each side and there was no one around to see it! I thought, no one will believe I caught a fish this large. I needed a picture. I got up the rocks and got the cell phone ready and snapped these two pics. As I had no way to get the behemoth back to the house to eat him I let him go to get bigger.
I didn’t get another bite the rest of the day. But that was okay. Considering I hadn't even expected to catch any fish at all, I did pretty good.
I decided to try a few other places and went to the map to see what the lake had to offer. I saw a road on the map marked “primitive road”. My mouth started salivating thinking, sweet! Have Rover will travel.
I got to the “primitive road”. In the town where I grew up, Newcastle, Oklahoma, this is not a primitive road. This was a well maintained dirt road. Primitive is a dicey road with sections that would call to mind some of the classic Camel Trophy roads in Brazil or Central America. Imagine my disappointment.
I intended to spend the rest of the day swimming. I decided to stop at Cedar Lake on the way home and splash around a bit. As I headed out the thunderheads were getting bigger and a nice storm was racing me back east to home. It's just as well, because the Boy Scouts tell us to never swim alone.
All in all I had a fun day and got a great fishing story to tell my grandkids.
The first of which arrives on December 28th, 2006.
Thanks for reading and happy Rovering.