Monday, August 11, 2008

Morning in the Marsh

It was early--very early.


Somehow John convinced me to wake up at 4:00 a.m. on Saturday to go fishing in the marsh. We left the house at 4:30, arrived in Matagorda at 5:30 and launched the kayaks right around 6:00. There was just enough light in the sky for us to see where we were going without the aid of a flashlight.

Paul, John's brother, was with us. He got his boat and gear ready before we did, so we bid him good luck as he paddled off. We told him we'd meet him later at McNab Lake. John and I didn't rush the one mile paddle to the lake, but stopped to fish the oyster reefs along the way and enjoy the sunrise over the marsh.


The marsh is a beautiful and mysterious place in the early morning light. Sitting low in the kayak, all you can see is cord grass, sky and water. We were lucky to be shaded by clouds early on, but later the sun broke through with its full force and the heat began to build.


When we finally arrived at the lake we heard Paul whistling for us and calling for help. At first, we thought he was in trouble, but as we got closer, we saw his rod bent nearly in half and realized the help he needed was in landing a whopper of a fish.


Now this is a fish story that John and Paul tell much better than I ever could, so if you're interested in such things, you can check out their blogs. The landing involved a lengthy kayak tow to the far shore, some quick work with the net and above all, endurance and determination of man over beast. The catch was an alligator gar with an estimated weight over 40 pounds and a length of 43 inches.

We fished until about 11:30 and those leaving with fish for supper were the ones with the most experience. Paul brought home two redfish and John caught a flounder and a redfish. The only thing red in my boat was the sock I brought along to take a picture of. I've delayed starting this second sock for about a month. This week I'll try to complete the pair.


The paddle back to the launch-site was hard work against the current and by this time of day it was extremely hot. I have a tendency to overheat easily and though I'd been careful to stay hydrated, it wasn't enough. As we were loading the kayaks and gear, I realized I'd gotten too hot. John and I had to cut our day in Matagorda short and head home so I could recuperate. It was disappointing to say the least, but we made up for it on Sunday after church with a return trip for lunch at Spoonbills and a drive on the beach...this time in the comfort of an air-conditioned Jeep.

15 comments:

  1. You two know how to enjoy a weekend! It's good to hear you did recover and are well again.

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  2. I headed over to John blog, and had a little look at that fish (is that even a fish!?!) I didn't know they existed..and I hope I never see one in person :-) ack! :-)

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  3. How peaceful your pictures looked. I'm sure it was a very serene morning.

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  4. Your pictures make it almost seem like that early of a wake up call worth it!

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  5. What an exciting trip! I'm glad you were able to recover for day 2.

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  6. Love these photos...such serenity in them...But what a tremendous outing! Glad you are ok and recovered well...A fine line between hydrated and dehydrated, isn't it...I'm the same way! Fun with the knitting sneak peek...I love how you take knitting fishing! :o) Happy Days ((HUGS))

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  7. What a wonderful way to spend your morning. Man, what a scary looking fish. Glad you are feeling better! Thank God for a/c!!!

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  8. Oh, how I love to read your adventures. Although the pre-dawn departure would be a bit much for me, I can imagine the kayak ride in the smooth marsh water. Please tell me there was mist just hanging above the water when the sun peeked over the horizon. Bliss, pure bliss.

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  9. Gorgeous pics! Be careful, though. It's HOT out there. You should have seen me at tennis lessons last week. lol!

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  10. Wow, that is one huge fish! You got some really wonderful pictures, as always. I'll bet it's easy to get overheated down there in the heat of the day, I know it would be for me.

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  11. what a fish they caught!(just popped over to John's blog) it is "ugly" almost to the point of spookey. Yet it makes a fabulous tale. Do people actually eat that kind of fish?
    So sorry to hear you had to paddle against the current going home. that is a rough going return after such a gorgeous morning.
    and very glad to hear that you recovered from overheating.

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  12. I'm more of a night person and it's not unusual for me to be going to bed sometimes when the sun is coming up, but that aside, the hours just before and after dawn are to me, the most beautiful time of day. Your pictures were lovely, and gee, a 40 pound fish for your friend. Wow! I'm sorry you got overheated. I HATE the heat.

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  13. You live such an idyllic life! Fishing in those bays would be a dream come true for my DH! But you'll know all the good honey holes for fish, boy, what a marvelous thing.
    I'm glad you listened to your body's signals telling you to recoup from the heat! I hear it's very dangerous! So glad you recovered. I love the look of your knitting project in the middle of the kayak. Such a pretty photo!

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  14. I saw that whopper alligator gar on John's blog earlier today. That thing gave me the creeps!

    The sock is looking quite pretty. :-)

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  15. Love the sock...and I would love to try kayaking. I also love the little soakers, but the pattern seems tricky. Is it?

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Thank you for commenting!
~Tracy