Brent Chapman
Monday, April 04, 2016

Brent Chapman
Photo: Brent Chapman

Practice Ė Day 1
Thank goodness we have 3 days of practice. Itís comparable to the first time we went to the Sabine River in that there are so many uncertainties, but the difference is at the Sabine, I felt more confident after day 1 because Iíd had some bites.

Typically, I donít set the hook in practice, but after an hour or two today, I felt like I had to because you donít know if theyíre 8- or 10-inchers. When I got some bites, they turned out to be mudfish. It was really frustrating. I probably caught about 10 and then set the hook again and it was a 2-pound bass. I didnít have enough to expand on today, so Iíll go look in a different area tomorrow.

Being the first time here and not knowing what kind of weight itíll take, itís just a gamble. Itís going to be hard to tell what itíll take, whether itís 12 pounds or 20 pounds. The only thing I could figure out today is I think the fish are more tide oriented than what I thought they would be, especially being around the spawn like it seems we are.

Itís a beautiful place. I was disappointed about this one creek I went into. Iíd found it a month ago and itís full of hydrilla. I thought for sure Iíd be able to catch something in there, but I never had a bite. Itís just a bunch of long, winding cypress-filled rivers and when you get on the lower end by the ocean, thereís a lot of that saw grass and ditches leading into the old rice fields. Itís a great looking place. Maybe our timing is off. From what I understand a lot of these rivers are pretty high so maybe to excel itís better when theyíre low.

Practice Recap
I know the other day I said I was glad we had 3 days of practice. At least one of the days, I felt like I found something I feel good about going to rather than having to worry about a 2-hour ride to get somewhere. Itís going to be an interesting one. Nobody knows what to expect as far as catches go. Iíd be tickled with any size limit as Iím sure a lot of guys would be. Weíve all been in this situation where we catch them better than what we think we will.

Tide wise, the wind weíre supposed to have will probably suck all of the water out, but hopefully, itíll get all the way in before that happens. I need the water up to have my best bites. If I could have 2 hours of fishing in that water, Iíd rather have that than stay around here. From what I saw yesterday, Iíd like to think I could use it for several days. Itís hard to tell on tidal waters, though. It was pretty windy so I couldnít really see it and I didnít want to draw attention to myself. Being there 30 minutes or 60 minutes earlier or later, it could be the mother lode or there could be nothing there at all.