Monsters… creatures of legend and lore. Magical beasts that capture our imaginations and pique our curiosity. I have a monster of my own and she has sunk her teeth deep into the remote recesses of my brain. She haunts my thoughts and is the reason I often find it difficult to sleep at night. It seems that we all have monster stories… the following is mine.
Just like all fishermen I as well have a favorite body of water. This pond has tons of fish and lots of cover. It has its good days and bad. This pond is just one of those places that pull you in.
On a warm September morning I was there. It was as perfect as a morning could be, in my quest for monster bass. The fog was thick; water was so still mirror like. I stood there admiring this beautiful morning for a few minutes before I began to unload my kayak and gear. I felt extremely lucky to be here with no other fishermen or boaters around. I pushed off from shore only to disappear into the thick morning fog. I pride myself in my ability to look at the water and know where to fish, but on this morning the fog was so thick I couldn't’t see 4 foot in front of me. There was not a worry or care running in my mind. The fog had engulfed me and my mind. Until the fog dissipated all I did was paddle and look with amazement at the beauty of this morning that God had created.
I knew soon more fishermen would come. Now with the morning fog gone I paddled to my little spot. I dropped anchor pulled out my go to rig, a Texas rigged JUNEBUG Trick worm. My first cast landed me a small 1.5 lb bass. More followed with every cast! Then just like that the bite was gone, and a couple fishermen in John boat had showed up. I knew the two of them and pulled anchor to go say hi and catch some shiners. It is a great way for me to pass the time when the bass stop biting. As the two anglers and I talk I was filling up my bait bucket with wild shiners. Soon they wanted to catch some as well but did not have the right hooks for these little fish. I gave them some #14 hooks and some bread and we all began having a blast hooking several of them. Soon my bucket was full of shiners, so I parted ways with the other two anglers. Hooked on a shiner and slowly trolled it behind me as I paddled around looking for more action. I wound up at almost the same place I was before.
Now I will say I have not caught a bass in this pond with shiners. I fish with them there all the time, but turtles are the only thing to take my bait! I am under the impression that these shiners and bass have an agreement of some sort. Still I had my shiner swimming behind me on an open bail. As the other fishermen still catching shiners and just having a blast doing so. I tossed out my worm into this nice little pocket and began to work it back to me, watching the line ever so closely for any sign of a bite. I still had my worm in the water on the bottom just sitting there, when I glanced over to the other boat to watch them bring in a huge shiner. We all began to laugh when all of a sudden my line went from slack to tight so quick I barely had time to set the hook. I have never felt a fish like this on my line… NEVER! The power this bass had I simply could not believe. I was anchored with a ten pound bell anchor plus the 220 lbs of me and the kayak. This fish was dragging all of this! I was fighting this fish like a mad cat after a bath. Every time I would get her out of the cover she would pull us back in. Finally she jumped we all got to see her. I was fighting this fish with so much focus I did not notice the other boat had come next to me. When she jumped my heart did too and one of the guys shrieked with excitement shouting I have never seen a bass that big. I knew my line was at the breaking point (8 lb mono Cajun line) if she made it to the cover she would bust off. She did just that and I could not stop her, my drag was heated from the fight my line was stretched to its limit. Just then she pulled me under a tree. To my disbelief she was still on but tiered so was I. At this point one of the fishermen asked if I needed help. I agreed and he jumped out of his boat into the 4 foot of water! As he approached her I could feel her getting ready to make another run. Just then he shouted this fish is HUGE. I can see it as he reached down to grab her she made her move. Then nothing my line went slack and the guy was only able to touch her before she busted off. All of us sickened by what had just happened I reeled in my line to investigate. She had worn out my line on all the branches and stumps. I couldn’t use the line any more it was the last of my spool.
By the time all this happened the sun was high and getting hot. So I headed to shore still sick from losing that fish. Loaded my gear and headed home with my frayed line and broken heart. That fish has haunted me ever since. Like a drug that I just cannot elude. I have caught and landed her we weighed her but I will not say the weight without pictures or video to prove. Rest assure though this year I will catch her film her and release her for all to see. Still this fish haunts my dreams and thoughts. She is the reason I started my quest for monsters and I will not stop.