Sitting on the bank of a mountain lake as the glow starts to shine in the eastern skies. Sitting with my kayak beached on the bank waiting for the first safe light to launch. The birds starting to chirp as the warming glow starts creeping up the mountain slope from the lake.
Fish crashing the surface as they chase bait fish. Mumbling “Com’ on sun”, shaking like a bird dog on point. This morning like most mornings in a fisherman’s life was full of anticipation. Then out of nowhere the sun starts cresting over the eastern horizon.
I’m off and in the water finally! I start casting along the bank into the flooded buck brush meticulously working every cut and boulder. Feeling the sun start warming my back, my rod line pulls tight as the rod doubles over nearly to the water. Thinking to myself “she’s a bigg’n”, I jerk the rod back pulling the 2/0 hook of the shaky head rig into her lip. As the pressure hits her lip, she darts to the back of the kayak trying to catch some slack in my line. No way girl I’m reeling as fast as you can swim. Then with the force of a round out of a howitzer, all at once she breaks the surface of the sun-soaked water to give me the most magnificent tail dance ever, then back in the water and running full out back to the shore. She had the strength of a full-grown male bovine as she pulled the rod tip deeper toward the water. With the tip low and controlling the slack I thought to myself as I reached for the net “she is mine”! Then like she was never there she broke the floro leader and was gone.
After slapping the water several times with the rod and explaining to no one how I had been robbed, I tied another shaky head onto my rod threading another critter craw onto the hook and set back out to find “Moby Dick”. The next 2 hours were great fishing but the girl that had gotten away was haunting me. There has never been a girl that has broken my heart like that largemouth bass did that morning in the warm sun on that Oklahoma mountain lake.
Other girls will come and go, and the fishing will be great, but my Robbers cave girl will be haunting my fishing dreams for ever. I won’t offer a size, you will just doubt me anyway, but she would have been one for my record book. Besides, do you ever get over the girl that broke your line?
If ever you find yourself in SW Oklahoma with a rod and some time, go to Robbers Cave State Park and fish Wayne Wallace lake. If you by chance find the girl that will give you the ride of your life remember, “don’t set your drag too tight!”
Share your stories of the one that got away in the comments!