Shipyard.It was actually the first time I met anyone who worked in the office or home base as we call it.I got hired a few months before that when they were in a pinch for someone and my resume happened to be in front of them.I remember coming into the yard last Summer and wondering if everyone in the office was as evil as was portrayed to me.The answer was simple,no.So what if the first few times I met the owners they didn't even say hello or who the hell is that.I'm the kind of guy that does his job well and stays under the radar.So when we left the yard after a week or so last Summer my feelings weren't hurt at all.However we have been back to the shipyard four times in the last year for general maintenance and supplies.The funny thing is now every person in that office knows my name.Normally that would worry me,it always did in High school.How did this happen,I don't really know.I know this though,last hitch,in the Shipyard with all three owners drilling me with questions about the boat,I answered everything well enough that I was asked to stay on the boat when they sent everyone else home.It was a mixed blessing because it's hard,long hours in the shipyard but it's money.
Whitetail Deer seen during the walk back
So we left that shipyard a few days ago and headed back to "home base" in Maryland.Last Summer when we first came here,a few of the crew and I walked the property.Behind the shipyard is a few hundred acres of fields,creeks,barns and yes a pond.It's a long walk to the pond but it's a nice quiet country walk.After we returned from our walk last year one of the owners suggested we take a fishing pole with us next time as there could possibly be a few fish in the pond.We had no fishing pole on board and I was new to the company so I let it rest.Fast forward one year and with my ability to borrow a van to get into town I did this past weekend.My goal,to buy a fishing pole.I accomplished this at the lovely Wal-Mart.Apparently Wal-Marts in the "country" actually have decent fishing gear.So with my twenty dollar rod and reel combo and my two beetle spins and a few rooster tails I went back to the boat.The next day,Sunday,I awoke knowing this was to be the day I make the walk.Unfortunately after working all day the crew wasn't having the same idea as me.To bad for them because I took the walk.
Sunset in Chesapeake City,Maryland
Just like I had remembered it,beautiful.I honestly wouldn't want the maintenance involved with a ranch this size,but I do admire.Furthermore,I will enjoy it if someone tells me I have permission and I do.So I took my time walking through the cut corn fields and over the small creeks and I finally made it.I sat down and just took a deep breath.On any side of me I was easily a twenty minute walk away from any human beings,priceless.No sound but the wind blowing through the pine trees.I rigged up my Wal-Mart special with a small rooster tail or my indicator lure.I learned this from my brother Swamp Thing,try a small lure to see what's biting then go after the big ones with bigger gear.First cast and you guessed it,fish on.It was a decent sized Crappie and thinking it was merely beginners luck I took a picture.Usually when things start off that good then end quite poorly in my life,this was to be a different couple of hours.
First fish of the day/small Crappie caught on rooster tail
So it went on this way for about an hour,I cast and every few retrieves fish on.Everything from one pound Crappie to small Bass and Sunfish.My brother Swamp Thing happened to call me in the middle of this awesome experience and I relayed what was going on.We talked for a few minutes and I told him of my current dilemma.I wanted to put a beetle spin on to try for a bigger bass but if I was catching fish why bother just enjoy it.Well I didn't get greedy and after hanging up the phone I put my gear down and simply went for a walk.I knew I had around an hour of daylight left and I wanted to just check out the woods and other surroundings.I found a few old wooden private property signs and a place I like to call Bluegill Gap.There's a creek or two that zig-zag through the property and I followed one that seemed to be leading me somewhere.I ended up at a small natural waterfall and I couldn't believe how awesome it was.After snapping a few pictures I returned to the lake and continued fishing.
Bluegill Gap,Chesapeake City,Maryland
I fished the same bank of the pond where I left off and was rewarded with a few overweight Crappie.Upon returning to the exact spot where I started fishing I took one last cast and I landed a nice two pound largemouth bass.I was so excited I couldn't believe I caught this fish on a rooster tail with a Wal-Mart special.After I calmed down I decided a few more casts before I returned to the boat.Exactly two casts later I landed the biggest largemouth bass I have landed since I was a kid.It took everything I had to get that fish to the shore line.I forgot how much I missed that feeling of oh please,oh please don't break the line.So all and all I guess I learned a few things this past Sunday.Number one,you don't need expensive gear to have fun.Number two,just because you're tired doesn't mean you can't do something you enjoy.In the words of Captain Johny,screw it you can sleep when you're dead!
Three poun-plus bass caught on private pond in Chesapeake City,Maryland