I have some pics and crap writing to post from today’s dirt road ride, but first I feel the need to share a fish story with you. No, it has nothing to do with the size of the fish I caught, but it’s a tale with telling.
I have been enjoying many a weeknight fishing at Herrick Recreational Area just north of Mt. Pleasant near Clare. I’ve had some pretty good success there and usually end up catching two to three bass per visit. They’re not all that big, but bass are always fun to catch no matter what size they are.
Despite the high heat that remained into the early evening, I returned Monday night to do some more of what I like to call Masterbassing™. I really didn’t expect much, but within the first few casts I had caught a bass (seen above). Again, not all that big, but it beats getting skunked.
After what seemed like twenty more casts without a bite, I moved down the shore to try my luck near another opening. Unlike the spot I was just in, this spot was right in the path of the hot early evening sun. I was soaked with sweat from just making some casts.
After a few casts I latched onto another bass. This one was a bit bigger, but not by much. I got it to shore, picked it up from the water and set about removing the hooks of my trusty torpedo lure from it large mouth. Just before I released it I took a step back and WHOOOOOOAAAA!! Boom!!! My foot slipped out from under me on the damp weeds and mud of the shore line and I crashed down on my ass like a ton of fat bricks!!
I sat there a bit dazed at what just happened while the bass flipped and flopped on the ground beside me. I quickly reached over with my left hand and gently pushed it back into the water to go do whatever it is bass do when they’re not being caught. I normally would have taken a bit more care to get the fish back into the water but I was in sort of a pickle…
You see, when I crashed down to the ground the rear hook of the lure in which I had easily freed from the fish’s mouth was now a good quarter-inch into my meaty right thumb and the front hook was nestled firmly in my t-shirt. Ohhhh…. fuck!!
I sat still on the damp shore bank for a few minutes assessing the wound and trying to figure out the best course of action. First I removed my rod and reel from the pond scum covered shallow water at my feet and then I just sat there sweating like a fool, hoping no one saw what was surely a hilarious site, deciding what to do. “One way or anther this hook has to come out I thought.”
I took a few deep breaths and started to wiggle the hook. Nothing happened other than some pain and I had now started to bleed. More wiggling, more bleeding, more hushed cursing: nothing.
Finally I took another deep breath, grit my teeth and commenced wiggling and pulling on the hook as firmly as I could stand until I was finally free.
I then removed the hook from my t-shirt and rinsed the wound out with some water I had with me. Oddly enough, it didn’t hurt that bad once the hook was removed. So once I stopped bleeding I set about continuing to do some fishing with no luck. I imagined the bass I had just caught regaling all the other fish in the area with tales of the moron fisherman that he just saw slip and fall like an idiot and suffer the same fate as it had just suffered. With entertainment like that, who’s interesting in eating fake fish with hooks attached to them?
Believe me, the irony of removing hooks from the mouth of a fish, only to do the same thing to myself seconds later is NOT lost on me. On the bright side, I didn’t have to remove it from my mouth and I DID catch two bass last night. I could have done without catching my fat thumb, but alas, that was not to be.
Between removing the hook and slipping and falling down hard twice this year, I have now officially hurt myself more while fishing than mountain biking. Sigh…