Once I parked my truck, it was time to jump in my brother’s truck and head to Arkansas. My brother has a Ford F350 Super Crew Cab, Extended Cab, 4x4. This truck can fill up for about a $120 in gas (diesel) and get almost 1,000 miles on one tank. This was a good thing because my brother and I prefer to make less stops and keep on driving. The less we have to stop for gas and anything else, the quicker we get to our destination.
About halfway to our destination in Arkansas from Houston, TX the rain kicked in the rest of the way. After driving for around 6.5 hours, we arrived to where we were going to stay for the night. It was cold, rainy, and it was late. I believe it was around 11:00 pm. After checking in, we decided to start rigging now so we didn’t have to do it in the morning. One thing I forgot to mention is that my brother and I left a day early so that we could fish for walleye on Friday. We both have never caught a walleye before so it was a bucket list fish for us. After staying up late and rigging, we managed to finally call it a night.
The next morning came quick, therefore, we both needed coffee to start the day off right. On the way to the launch spot, we found a McDonald’s. My brother and I both got some breakfast with some coffee through the drive thru and then we continued to the launch spot. Once we arrived, the area looked awesome but there was one problem???? Due to the freeze and rains, the current was so strong that it was not safe for a boat much less a kayak. My brother and I are not ones to give up so after a short conversation, we decided to head to the Saturday chain pickerel spot and do a little pre-fishing. It took around 40 minutes to drive from one launch to the other. Once we arrived, we checked the area out then started to get the yaks ready.
Now it was time to get the yaks into the water and fish. Before we unloaded the kayaks, I noticed that the water was really dirty. This is the dirtiest I have ever seen it. I’m assuming it’s because of all the rain Arkansas has been getting lately. Needlessly to say, my brother and I were going to give it our best. I love unloading the yaks at a boat ramp because I just set the trailer in the water and unload the yaks like a boat would on a trailer. Once the trailer is in the water, I push the kayak off of the trailer and into the water. Once the kayak has cleared the trailer, I have a rope tied on the front handle of the kayak so that I can pull the kayak to shore. After the truck is parked, my brother and I say our own prayer before entering the water and then it was time to get to fishing!
The air temp is in the 30’s on a cloudy but slightly drizzling rain throughout the day. This is perfect for chain pickerel fishing. I was excited as this was the same conditions, minus the muddy water by the boat ramp, the first time I ever came to fish for pickerel on this lake. Since my first time fishing this particular lake, I have fished for pickerel on this lake quite a few times. The first time I fished on this lake for pickerel I caught over 70 pickerel. I was hoping that this would be the same this go around. My brother and I hit the water and head toward where I felt the pickerel would be.
Even though we were fishing for pickerel, my brother ended up hooking up into a white bass in the very beginning.
While he was catching white bass, he also managed to catch a few large mouths while I was still working on trying to find my first fish, lol.
I had a few pickerel on the line but they let go before I could get them in the kayak. No worries, the day is still young and I still had a lot of time left to fish. I was determined to catch some pickerel.
As the day progressed, the bite was tough. We caught fish but not fiercely.
Finally, the day was coming to an end and we headed back to the launch. There was not a lot of fish caught but we didn’t get skunked. My brother managed a white bass and a large mouth bass. We don’t usually keep large mouth but that one was hooked in the gills so this bass was going to die. The bass was definitely a keeper so we decided to keep it and fillet it up along with the white bass.
My brother heads to get the truck and bring it down to load the yaks up.
After packing everything up, we both take one more look at the lake before heading to where we were staying at for the night.
Once we got to the motel, we unpacked the necessary stuff for our stay. The game plan was to grab some dinner at Waffle House (which was right across the street from where we are staying at), get cleaned up, then chill for the rest of the evening.
When we made it back to our rooms, we checked in on William to see where he was at. William was driving up from Houston and was going to fish with us on Saturday and Sunday. William wasn’t too far out. I believe he was going to arrive between 11 pm and 12 am.
William made it in safely. I was sacked out so I don’t recall hearing him arriving. My brother, however, chatted with him for a short time.
Now that the night is over, the next morning arrives. We are packing the vehicles because we decided that after we fished for pickerel, we would head back to Texas to fish for white bass on the Angelina River on Sunday.
The reason for this is because Sunday was supposed to be thunderstorms all day. If that wasn’t enough, there was going to be a kayak pickerel tournament on Sunday. We figured that it would just get too crowded for us. This way we would be back in Texas and instead of having a six-hour drive back to Houston, our drive would only be 2.5 hours. That sounded like a much better deal.
William, Steve, and I arrive at the launch spot. We get our stuff ready for the water. Once we are ready, another prayer is said and away we went.
Another great day of pickerel fishing is on its way. Water temp, very cold. Air temp, very cold. Weather, slightly rainy and extremely cloudy. In other words, it was extremely cold (It was averaging in the upper 30s for air temp when we got there). Believe it or not, this is what pickerel like. The weather stinks but that is what you got to have in order to fish for pickerel and have a good day at it.
We are traveling to the spots my brother and I fished yesterday.
We waste no time as we are rigged up and getting ready to fish.
The pickerel fishing was much better today. I founded out pretty quickly that the pickerel wanted a lure called a Shadow Rap. The didn’t want what I usually threw so I decided today to change it up. The change up paid off. Once I found out what the deal was, I told my brother and William. William didn’t have a Shadow Rap. I offered him one but he wanted to do his own thing. My brother bought a few of these Shadow Raps before leaving for this trip. We both had a couple of these ready to go.
As we fished throughout the day, my brother finally caught something that neither William or I have ever caught or seen before. I think it was a PB for my brother. I was so jealous that he caught that. Only the best, that’s all I can say!
I continued to fish.
While I was fishing, wouldn’t ya know it. My brother managed to catch another rare species (two in one day).
After my brother finished releasing his rare catch, back to fishing we went.
All of a sudden, the bite picked up even more.
Apparently, William was tired from catching as many fish as we did. We all had a great time. I didn’t get hardly any pics of William’s catch because he was fishing kind of out from us at times when he was catching. Hopefully he will post his catch on here when he gets a chance. Now it’s time to head back to the launch.
https://vimeo.com/528627306 (click or copy/paste on this link to see video)
We are finally back to shore and boy, what a fun day!
After getting the yaks out of the water…..
…. we drive the yaks to the top of the hill and out of the way of things so that we can get everything stored away for the trip back to Texas.
One last look at the lake before heading back to Texas.
Now that we are on the road, we quickly talk about stopping at the Waffle House again before leaving Arkansas. I absolutely love the Texas bacon cheese steak sandwich. After a quick bite to eat, we are on the road headed to Texas. The drive to our destination of where we will be staying at is a 3.5-hour drive. The drive actually wasn’t too terribly bad. Before you know it, we are staying near Nacogdoches for the night.
The next morning, Sunday, comes and we are at the launch spot. We are targeting white bass. I was just fishing this spot three to four weeks prior and did well. Surely, we could catch some good ones here despite the freeze a week before. The river where we fish is quite deep so I thought that the fish would be there but hanging low until things warmed up. The morning temps were in the 50s but warming up to a high of upper 60s by the end of the day. It was a cloudy day and there was a small percent chance of rain. We waste no time and start getting things ready to fish.
All three of us hit the water and get to fishing.
We are tossing all sorts of stuff at the fish but they don’t want anything to do with us. Even boats are not catching anything as well. I checked and watched others out there and there was no catching at all with the exception of the occasional catfish.
William was with me on the prior trip to this spot so he knows how good this place can be. Unfortunately, this go around wasn’t as productive as the last time. William and I got to talking and decided that if we were on the water for more than two hours and nothing to show for it that we would pack it up for the day and get our start back to Houston earlier than planned.
After some more fishing and no catching, all three of us decided to call it. Even though we were on the water for a short time, we still had fun.
After making it back to the launch, we packed up. It was a short but fun day.
I am not sure what William was doing in the last pic but if he was trying to go up against my brother’s F350, I believe he will lose. lol
All in all, it was a great three days of fun fishing. I thoroughly enjoyed fishing with William and Steve! I can’t wait until we do it again next year. Everyone made it back to Houston safely with no issues. The weather and traffic were clear going back so that was a plus for ending our trip.
Thanks to everyone for reading this trip report. Until next time, tight lines!