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My 3000 Mile Road Trip In Search Of A Monster And New Friends


kentlakecarper
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Hello All,

Ever since I joined CAG I had wanted to fish the ATC down in Texas. Not only did I want to fish the event, but I wanted to experience what makes this particular event different than most other events.

I had never been able to make the event due to work commitments, in my line of work my season kicks off in March so I was always left as a regular member to read the stories and drool over the pics of the fish caught.

With the event dates changing to February this year, i was stoked to finally have a chance to fish an ATC!!! Add to that the extras that the new committee added to the event, I was real excited!

Now I had to find a partner and decide on how I was going to get all my goodies to Texas all the way from Michigan...let the planning begin. Well the planning began and then it came to a stop. Something called work got in the way and somehow I was in charge of putting together a huge convention at the Greektown Casino in Detroit just a week before the ATC..OH BOY!! well gotta do what I gotta do and so I did. All my focus was on this convention, and somehow my dumbarse decide to do a Bait fundraiser for the club, which totally blew my expectations away. Well that resulted in even more work for me and at a time when i was already pulling my hair out (whats left at least..lol). Add in my family and my regular duties for work and CAG and I ran myself ragged...the last thing on my mind was the ATC, which was bumming me out, but still i was committed to going and I just have to suck it up.

Still i had no partner either....hmmm, well I called my Brother Dennis in the Fort Worth, TX area and decided to catch up with him, after our phone chat i was shocked to believe I had just asked a fella who knew nothing about carping, let alone had any gear to be my partner and he said of course...LOL!! Not only that but he managed to call my other brother Eric in Utah and convinced him to be our runner and to fly down for the event...AWESOME!!

Holy carpola, now I need to come up with 6 sets of rods/reels and everything else to go along with setting up a team...Well that answered one thing for me..I WAS TO DRIVE 1543 miles one way to get to this event!

Fast forward to after my convention which ended on a Saturday and I was to head out on my trip Monday morning, a day and a half to get everything together,no problem :lol:

Ok, after all my whining I did get everything in order and had the car packed Sunday night. Monday morning alarm went blaring and I shot out of bed to get a cup of Joe and as i passed by my front door i noticed a whole lot of blinding white...an FN snow storm..no wait, a snow storm on top of an ice storm over night. Chit :angry: Well better wait until the salt trucks do their thing and check on the weather...oh boy, not to get any better until early afternoon....Ah well, part of the upcoming adventure!

Said heck with it and off i went. oulled out of the garage at 12:30pm and off I went. Roads were crap for the first 200 miles but being in Michigan one gets used to it, just slower going. As I headed into Indiana the temps and weather were musch better and the ol cruise control climbed a few mph :)

Truck stop, another truck stop and yet another truck stop to fill up with gas and munchies and pretty soon i was taling to my br at 5am on the phone with just another 200 miles left to go. Finally arrived at his house around 8am. I can't believe I made it straight through! WHEW.

Off to bed to take a power nap and recharge the batteries. As I woke I went right to work with rigs, leadcore and all the other fine tuning that goes into getting ready for an event. During all this I had a great time catching up with my bros and eating a nice dinner. Come morning we would start the last leg of the trip down to Austin.

We got to Austin around 3pm, unpacked the car and settled into the suite. Right out back of our suite was the corn boil location and a whole lot of friendly faces from the forum...ahh fellow CAG members I can't wait to meet and shhot the chit with and so I did B)

After meeting all sorts of folks and going over a few things with Neil, it was close to dinner time and everyone was anxiously waiting on the Hooter girls to bring the wings.

The corn boil and the social atmoshpere was excellent, but seemd to fly by. The wings, pizza and the Hooter Girls were amazing.

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Ok, now to get some sleep and wake up at 5 to get to the peg draw...at the peg draw we pulled peg number 5, the dog park..oh well what do I know, if there are fish me and my rookie bro will catch em B) yeah well uhm let me just say and make an already long story a lil shorter that this swim was soon to be nicknamed "Sprinkles Doom". This was the only section of the lake where dogs could run free. My gear was pissed on 4 different times, I winessed a pit bull attack a little dog, my brothers 3 rods almost drowned a huge choc lab after getting tangled in all 3 of his lines and had power pro warpped around it throat, legs, and well just about every body part with no owner around to help...that took all 3 rods out of commission for almost an hour :angry: . Then i watched dog after dog jump into the water after balls and OH..OH YEA one owener was kind enough to kick my net out of the way for his dog to take a massive poop! :lol:

This pic says it all!!

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My brother Eric took so many pics of all the dogs and I'll try to add a few later, but let me just say that this was the worst place for a carp angler to be, let alone in a tourney :lol: Yes, we blanked and really bad, but we remained in good spirits and said "it is what it is"....one last thing of note....Across the lake we witnessed the winning peg of the day (peg 6) haul and clap and i swear i heard Bubba say something like "HA HA YOU STANKIN YANKEES" :lol: Then to our right (peg 7, bridge swim..2nd place for the day) Zach and Cory haules arse too...that was tough to swallow, even more so when i asked what they were catching on...some fishies on the bait they got from me :rolleyes: ...Can this day be done already, I really want a beer!

7pm finally came and the sprint to the car was in order to get a proper grub on!! Twin peaks was our destination after a quick stop to change out of non carpy smelling clothes......45 minutes later and we arrived to Twin peaks, Neil had worked out a 30% discount and my bro my buying so i was a happy man. I was even happier when i saw Amos, Tony, Gil and a bunch of other fellow CAG members.

I was so craving a cold one that the first thing out of my mouth was going to be "a beer please and cold!" but the first thing out of my mouth was "WOW" when the waitress arrived :bigsmile:

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Ok, to be continued in a sec...

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Heheh heheh,

Check out the nachos served here:

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Going back to add a few lil tid bits to my day one story:

Here we have the biggest dog I ever saw in my life, all 165 lbs of him:

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Here was at any given moment my "experience" with the dog swim:

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They stole my trash too, whcih a very nice owner was so kind to return to me :lol:

Adding to the dogs, we had the rowers. Well a female in a white top in a single skiff was rowing along and not paying attention when BAM she nails the bank and overturns right at peg #7...poor thing should have worn something under that shirt, I mean watched where she was going :rolleyes::D

What a crazy peg.....

Day 2 coming soon, with fish pics :Banana:

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Pic of the city from our peg:

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Ok, ok so after taking a beating day one but ending the night in great fashion the confidence was still high for the next day...purty please can some good karma come my way for day 2??????

Woke up feeling like an old man and told my bro to pick the peg for us as I was staying in the room to think on the approach to this day in regards to bait and tactics.

A little while later he storms through and said our luck just got worse, I groaned and said i ain't leavin Texas until we both catch a fish! Then the little chit pulls out the peg and I blinked a couple times when It finally dawned on me he drew peg #6..ya you know the one with the Rebel Texans putting a spanking on the carp the day before...Oh it's on and i bolted for the door yelling come on you "female dogs, thers fish to be caught!" :icon_smoking:

Arrived at the peg and knew it was going to be a good day, well at least if the Rebels left us any fish to catch...set my bro up on the point and I took the side. Another highlight was Neil was to join us again..Yes!

Fishing started slow, and then could it be??? whats that sweet sound I have craved since Novemebr of 2011..thats right a SCREAMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMing run!! By bro hooks into it and after a respectable fight lands a nice 21lber...alright on the board and off the skunk list. Then it was my turn, my reward was a mid teen, but I'll take it. Back and forth it went with Dennis catching one then me.

Then Dennis hooks into what would soon become his personal best, a whopping 28lb Beauty with a funky growth that looked like a horn coming out of it's face :yes: No matter where I fish the funky fish will fall into my net.

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We had all sorts of fish shapes, fatties, long ones, horned ones :yes: crooked ones like this one:

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Upside down fish:

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Fish with a big Black Eye:

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Even a tagged fish:

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Ok more coming soon.....

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Dang it, things keep coming back to me from that dang crazy Dog Swim..ok here were a couple other notables:

1. This fella pictured below had my group convinced he was a lunatic, a crazed mad man that was cussing and screaming at every one that walked by. Totally whacko!!, well about an hour later we realized this dude was calling after his dog :lol: This guy used every naughty word in the dictonairy and even stuff in Spanish that would make Mario blush :lol:

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2. What the heck??? Only in Texas :P

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3. Please Dennis can I cast??Purty please, I need some action!! :lol:

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Ok, other than the hundreds and thousands of different dogs that licked, hacked, puked, pooped, peed, smelled, or gave me the stink eye, that is about it from the "SPRINKLES DOOM" peg...but no matter we made fun and have the pics to proove it B)

Ok back to Day 2 again, sorry about the jumping around.....

Good night Day 1

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Ok, seriously I'm back on track..so where was I ..uhm oh yea, finishing up day 2:

So Day 2 we are catching a bunch of fish and in a high traffic area for pedestrians, so here is a pic of what our swim looks like after we land one:

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One of my 2 favorite qoutes for the day was when I fought a fish, bro netted it and we laid it on the mat, a lady said, "That fish took a whoopin" :yes:

The other was when one of the guys that was hanging out a bit said "Oh look, more Carp Angler Group Groupies" :lol:

Here is a shot of my bro Dennis and his snag monster:

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Later in the day after catching a bunch of teen fish i finally hooked into my 2012 PB:

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Here is a shot with one of our neighboring CAG members whom came over to verify the weight:

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And here is a shot of my all time personal Best Fresh Water catch of near 50 lbs and 48 inches long....the highlight of my trip!!!

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Having 2 of my brothers there to share in my experience was truly an extremely special moment for me:

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More details later....

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After catching the Grass Carp we hooked into one more 20+ lb carp. After calling into Neil, he said congrats, you guys had the best day 2 results putting your team into 4th place overall for the whole event. Wow...I felt really proud of that!! All I wanted out of this trip was to see my brother catch his personal best and for me to catch a buffalo or a grass carp (never caught either).

What a trip, what a blast!!

But wait, it does not end there.

After getting back to our hotel I now had work to do so I hurried and got ready.

Seeing everyone in the banquet room with a bunch of their guests really made me proud as the President of the club..all these folks having a good time. The ATC committee did a great job with the before, during and after the event entertainment.

Neil and I would procede to announce the winners, read the proclamation from the mayor and also present 8 individuals with a nice Mug that caught their new personal best carp during this event.

Then came dinner and a great presentation from the Texas Parks and Wildlife reps.

After dinner I went up and conducted the Auction (which was really fun) which brought in the club $709.

Last thing on my list was to buy the winning rebel champs a drink :party0012icon: from the bar.....boy oh boy, in Texas even the shots are bigger...much much bigger :yes: After the rebels woosed out on going for seconds :P my night continued with a butch of chit chat with fellow members and it turned into a long night, ending with me staring at the hotel pool with thoughts of jumping in for a swim :lol:

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It was great to have you Mr. Pres. I'd think you made up half the stuff, I f I wasn't with you.....what a great time......and a great read ! Didn't read however that the head Biologist for the regions spent both days with us at the swims, he and several of his assistants were amazed at what was going on, we even had to leave them a few hair rigs and some of Andy;s corn, as they were going to try their luck later on,,,,and you forgot to mention the nut job in the plaid skirt,,,,,,wouldn't be so bad but it was a dude, not a dudette,,,,

Good to spend time with you and your brothers,,,,hope the doggie pee came off you hold all,,,,,we will NOT be pegging that one again, well unless I can be sure you get it !!!!

Thanks for joining us,,,,,and we're glad you enjoyed you Nachos as TWIN PEAKS....

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