Growing Up and Fishing the Atchafalaya River Basin
I grew up fishing for catfish in the Atchafalaya River and for bass in the bayous of the Atchafalaya Basin.

Typical Atachafalaya Basin scene

There is nothing more peaceful than fishing for catfish in the early morning on a sandbar on the banks of  the Atchafalaya River.  The smell of the early morning river air is so very fresh and relaxing. 

Atchafalaya River

Bayou Courtableau
Just as soothing is quietly paddling down Bayou Courtableau in a pirogue, wetting a line as you go along.  Many a Saturday my whole family would go fishing bream and have a fish fry that night.

During the summer, my boyhood friends and I fished catfish in the river with rod and reel, fished catfish in the bar pits with crosslines, trapped turtles (snappers) in the bayous, and hunted bull frogs at night.  We'd fry catfish and frog legs on Friday nights.  Several of those boyhood friends still fish the river and bayous for a living.  Gosh, I had a great childhood.

Training the Next Generations
 My son David and my grandkids started fishing with me at a very early age.  I have fond memories of my very first fishing trip with each, which are pictured below.
It's August 11, 1985, David (he actually was called Loy back then) caught a fine stringer of bream on his first fishing trip.

Looks like Dad was a little thinner and had a full head of red hair in those days.

It's the week of June 11, 2001,
and this is when Ryan became a fisherman by hanging out with Grandpa.
Ryan caught a stringer of bream on his first day of fishing.
Ryan also caught a big old mud cat,
and boy did it fight!
Katie much prefers to have a "tea party" with her Nana, but every now and then she will "fish" with Grandpa (at least for a little while). 
It's the summer of 2002; and believe it or not, Katie's first fish was a 1 1/2 lb bass she caught on a night crawler while trying to catch a perch.  She figured that was enough fishing for one day and went back inside to have tea with Nana.
Bass Fishing on Nantucket Lake
We now live on a small lake in a rural subdivision in the College Station, TX area.  When my son was living at home, we fished all the time.  We made most fishing trips contest, and I must admit my son out fished me on a regular basis.  Probably our most memorable fishing experience was when I caught a 6.5 pound large mouth bass and David caught a 7 pound large mouth bass on the same morning.  We practice catch and release, except for those two big bass that are hanging on my game room wall.  Then David discovered girls, went to college and became occupied with other things, but don't worry because my grandson Ryan likes fishing with his Grandpa.  Below is a nice bass I caught of my boat dock.
This native large mouth grandma was 25 1/2 inches long, but only 6.5 pounds.

I caught it on my favorite bait - a rainbow Slug-Go.

This big old bass reminds me a lot of myself - big head, no butt!

And yes, I practiced catch and release.


Tracking Bass in Nantucket Lake
We weigh and measure the length of virtually all the bass we catch.  Below is a graph that shows the relationship between weight and length.  We still have not caught the "big one".  We seldom fished in the spring when the fish we spawning, so these weights represent fish without eggs.  These are all "native" large mouth bass.