My Dirt Time The Adventures of Tom Sciacca

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Billy Anthony - Hamilton, TX

"In early April one of the most knowledgeable salt water fisherman I know, Shawn, went camping with me on the Leon River in Hamilton, TX. He is from south Texas and lives on the coast in Rockport. I live outside of Austin in a tiny little town but grew up on that river. He asked me how cold it was gonna be and I told him highs in the low 80s and lows in the 40s. I did, however forget to tell him about the 10 - 15 degree drop when you are camping on the river. He spent about half of the night wrapped up in his sleeping bag in front of the fire. He said it was miserable. The next day the sun came out and we started fishing. The problem is I forgot my freshwater tackle box and all he had was salt water gear. It was horrible. Nothing was biting not even the catfish. Suddenly Shawn hooked a large mouth bass that had to weigh 5 pounds but with us using salt water hooks he got off. Not five minutes later the exact same thing happened to me. By this point Shawn had had about all he could take. I could tell he was on the verge of throwing every rod, reel, lure, hook and the tackle box into the river. Then something hit his line. He reeled in a small bass. Then he caught another and another. And as he is getting into the rhythm of catching these small bass he got a hit that sent his drag to whistling. After about 5 minutes of fighting he brought in a 4 foot gar. He told me he had never caught a gar. He said that made up for the cold, the fish not biting, and the big bass getting away. He told me that that was his main goal for the weekend. That night we made the tent more airtight which made it considerably warmer in there. When we left Shawn said that he will always remember that place. I am thinking we should make it a tradition. I just hope he buys some long johns and coveralls." - Billy Anthony

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