When I’m out on the water, I’m always looking to bring home something unusual. Sometimes it backfires.

Like the time Kimball and I were bass fishing in Bayou Catherine. It was odd that black bass were even there. There was salt, or art least brackish water all around.  Bayou Catherine is a dead end canal that runs into a canal that runs into the inter-costal barge canal. There are two places to get into the Inter-coastal out off Lake Ponchatrain. If you follow the Inter-coastal east it will take you into Lake Borne.

Best advice: always have a map in the boat.

We saw one porpoise in the Inter-coastal. We tried to get closer to it, but it was too smart. We got a long ways ahead of it, killed all motors on the boat and sat absolutely quiet. It still avoided coming close to our boat. I’d say it weighed 600 to 800 lbs. so I didn’t have any ideas about hooking it, but I did want a closer look.

On the canal that connected the Inter-coastal and Bayou Catherine, we caught our last of several alligators in Louisiana. It was a baby, less than 18 aches long, but it had an appetite for a frog. I threw a snag proof frog in front of it and the little gator grabbed it. I set the hook, but it’s mouth was too hard for it to get hooked. After several attempts and misses, the little gator wouldn’t take my bait any more, so I pitched the frog up on the bank close to the water. Little gator couldn’t stand the temptation and crawled up on the bank and got it. That put him facing away from me and I hooked him on the corner of the mouth, which is the only place I was ever able to hook a gator.

I landed him and Kimball played with him awhile trying to feed him chocolate chip cookies which he immediately spit out. When we released him, as we did every gator I caught, he simply swam off.

It was low tide exposing three or four feet of bank. As we went into Bayou Catherine. blue crabs ran everywhere across the exposed bottom up into the grass. I decided to jump out of the boat with my dip net, catch a bunch of crabs, put them in the live well and have a crab boil when we got home.

I put the trolling motor on the highest setting and headed for the bank. The idea was for the boat to run up on the bank where I would jump out. Kimball would move to the front seat and use the trolling motor to come back and get me.

I jumped out with crabs going enmass for the grass. When I hit the exposed “dirt,” it was nothing but soft mud. I was immediately waist deep in it. Kimball was coming to get me when something pretty good size started moving against the calf of my leg down in the mud.

I couldn’t wait for the boat to get there. I hollered, “Throw me the lead rope,” which she did. I pulled the boat over to me and used it to lift myself out of the mud. I went out into the middle of Bayou Catherine and spent considerable time washing off the mud.

I didn’t get one crab. And I never tried again.

Remember that July is when baby copperheads are born, not hatched.  They come out fully armed and with a pinkish cast to their coloration. There can be as many as 20 or more in a brood.

Picnic is this week.      KL