Texas is a warm water fishing state. Every
winter the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
does an admirable job of bringing rainbow trout
fishing to Texans through their community trout
stocking program and the southernmost trout
fishery in the USA is the Guadalupe River in
South Texas. But warm water is king! Bluegills,
largemouth bass, Guadalupe Bass, spotted bass,
smallies, warmouth, Rio Grande cichlid. But I
start sounding like Bubba Blue in Forrest Gump
reciting shrimp recipes. Then there's the Gulf Coast
but that's another article.
Bob Voelker asked me to go fishing down on the
Paluxy with him and Al Crise. I jumped at that
offer, took me all of three seconds to decide.
Nothing like an instant message at work inviting
one to go fishing!
We left for Glen Rose at o'dark thirty and pulled
up at the café about the time that breakfast rush
had started. We knew Al must be there because he
had advised that he'd be in a white Chevy truck
and there were at least nine in the parking lot.
One had to be him. A cup of coffee later and the
right white Chevy truck pulled in. We had some
breakfast and headed on out to the river.
Glen Rose and the Paluxy are at the edge of where
Texas stops being the high plains and more towards
the Hill Country. The historic Brazos River runs
nearby, this area is a part of the Brazos drainage.
Our first stop was a low water crossing where
we parked and waded in to fish the edges above
and below. The fishing was not too great here
but Al and Bob both picked up a few spotted bass
and bream. I was sitting 100% skunk.
We moved on to another area of the river to fish;
below a bridge sitting over a small dam. Kinda
tricky here, the water was moving faster than
any of us wanted to try. Why tempt Mr. Murphy?
We got on down the road closer to Dinosaur Valley
State Park where we paused for a moment at the side
of the road to watch two young men cutting doughnuts
in a big puddle of water in a valiant attempt to
wear out their truck before its time. Ah youth.
This was our most technical wade of the day, all
done in cutoffs and T-shirts by the way. We never
got in too much over waist deep all day. On this
section of the river I had my casting epiphany.
I was starting to get bummed out pretty bad about
the skunk smell I was wearing. Al and Bob were big
and gracious enough to not mention it. I stood
there pondering why I fly fished in the first
place, wondered why the heck I put myself through
all this. Then, as I pondered, I began to get the
image of fly fishers of old, standing in stately
old streams with ponderous fly rods and horsehair
lines, sweeping the fly across the water in the
slow, elegant manner that was more a matter of
practicality than "Style." As I pondered that
image and pictured myself back in those times
it all came back to me. I began to cast my
Shakespeare fiberglass rod with slow elegance.
The black and red shoe popper that Al had given
me began to pull bluegills out of their hidey
holes underneath overgrown sections of riverbank.
I felt the water pushing my legs. I was right
there on the river catching those bluegills right
and left. That last bit of time on the river was
worth the entire trip. Al showed us his best spots
which must remain secret even though it really
doesn't matter. All the fish have been caught
out of the Paluxy, there are no more. So don't
even bother coming, it would be a waste of time.
I'll go fishing again with Bob and with Al but
somewhere that there are fish. ~ Robin
Robin Rhyne is an aspiring fly fisherman and
fly tier who lives in North Texas and does not
get to go fishing near enough! You can reach him
via his website: