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Night fishing on Stockton Lake, Missouri

Yay – I caught a fish! Picture by Tom (Glen) Pierce

Friday night I had my first opportunity to try out night fishing. Tom invited me to go night fishing with him on Stockton Lake. Just before four pm, we set off with Tom’s boat in tow for the fifty-odd mile drive to Stockton.

By five-thirty, we were fishing and enjoying the lakeside scenery from the comfort of the boat. In fact, we did a whole lot more enjoying the scenery than we did catching fish. On the rocks and bare branches by the lakeside, the damselflies were out in their hundreds, looking like delicate bunches of small pale blue flowers waving in the breeze. We saw two herons that reluctantly moved as we started casting close to the shore where they were sitting. One of them flew with its neck outstretched so that it could call out, well croak. I’ve not seen a heron fly with its neck out before, and it soon folded its neck in normal heron flying pose. We also saw a turkey vulture which sat in a bare tree eyeing us up, presumably for a potential meal.

By seven pm we’d ‘half caught’ a couple of small perch and that was it. By half caught, I mean the fish managed to get off our hooks before we could properly land them. It was about this time that I switched to my ‘Lucky’ fishing hat (Tom scoffed at this), but he caught a fish shortly afterward. Around eight I decided that if I couldn’t catch a decent fish at least I’d try for some nice pictures, and started snapping away at the sunset which was absolutely stunning.

Once the sun went down a change in fishing strategy was required, so Tom lent me a heavier rod and I tried fishing with what is best described as a rubber worm. The bass seemed to like them, Tom caught several, and I managed to catch one nice sized largemouth bass. We continued fishing until around ten-thirty when we called it a day. Despite the slow start we’d got some nice fish and enjoyed a peaceful evening on the lake.

I arrived home according to plan, just after twelve, which was fine, except we’re going to St Louis to drop the girls off with their father Saturday, and onward camping after that. Saturday might end up being a long day, especially as the van still hasn’t got any air conditioning.    

Copyright © 2010 Gary Allman, all rights reserved.