On Mother’s Day we headed out for a day of fishing. Wind was howling and Aransas Bay was choppy as we traveled across. Half way through the bay I realized my brand new rod and reel combo was nowhere to be found. Disappointment set in as I realized it must have bounced off during the bumpy ride. As I look for it I see something in the back of the boat. A live gafftopsail catfish! It must have jumped on the boat during the ride. That’s a first!

We get to our spot and I wade and cast for about 20 minutes and hook up to a beautiful redfish. I land the fish and put it on my non-brand boca grips. I hold it up to my rod that has a measuring tape and it’s 28 inches. Sweet! Next thing I know it slips off the grips and I’m watching it swim away in an instant. I’m in disbelief. I’m looking around to see if anyone just saw what happened? Funny I know since I was in the middle of nowhere in the flats and my husband was wading about half a mile away. Some birds were looking at me and I swear they were laughing. So I shake it off and continue my wade.

Shortly thereafter I hook up to another big redfish! It’s always such a rush to fight a slot red. Hook was set and it’s game on! I fought it for a few minutes and all of a sudden nothing. It got off. As I reel in my line it’s clear that the knot to the hook had come undone. I had clearly failed to tie it properly. What can you do at that point other than just continue fishing. But the birds were clearly laughing and judging…🤣

So the rest of the day brought plenty of rat reds and hardheads. I managed to catch a nice 18″ flounder and a 16” trout so dinner was saved! And then as I threw my last cast I hooked up to a beautiful 27” redfish to complete my “Texas slam”.

Moral of the story is to never quit regardless of what life throws at you. Sometimes it may take until your last cast to get rewarded. Or the next trip. Second moral of the story is always check your knots.

–Nina Garrett


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