Scott Jamison and I share a common fantasy when we go hooking. We search only for those bullies in the shallows with bullet heads, broad, powerful tails with beauty marks on both sides, and pull like a six Clydesdales horse team on a small wagon.

That narrow approach to the great sport of fishing sometimes leads to long periods of no action. We would be happy after a day moseying around the bays and cuts to have only our redfish friends notice our bait.

My passion for fishing exclusively for reds started when as a young boy, fishing off my dad’s pier in the Old Brazos River, a big boy red tried to pull me and my rig into the water.

That experience started a small fire that has become a rage over the years. Scott’s first experience with those raging bulls of the shallows occurred after he moved to Brazoria County about 10 years ago.

Growing up on a farm in Kansas, his love to fish was limited mostly to catching bass and catfish out of small lakes and the nearby Salina River; a lot of fun, but not the strongest line stretchers. He became a jack of all trades while working for his teaching degree, eventually bringing him to Brazoswood High School as a senior English teacher.

I’m not sure if fate, destiny or some unknown brought us together. I am sure that this old fisherman needed someone to ride I’m Ready with him to his fishing holes and, just as important, help him write better stories about his adventures.

Scott desperately wanted to improve the size of his stringer, but knowledge of our vast fishing area took years to learn. So, we made a deal, he would help me with my problems, and I would pass on to Scott what I had learned over a lifetime about how to hook those big, bad-boy Redfish.

We have bonded so well over the years as fishing buddies that this story is one of many that turned out to be good news for us.

Fall and winter fishing is sometimes difficult because live bait is an absolute must for us to have success.

Extreme tide, especially lows around those cold North winds, makes it difficult for bait camps to catch products to sell. Boats have difficulty getting to the shrimping grounds, and those little ponds where most minnows live are dry.

This past weekend, Scott and I got lucky for the first time during the holidays. We were able to obtain a good supply of shrimp and minnows. Two old boys were happy as a lark to finally get to wet a hook and get rid of some of that accumulated fishing itch in our britches.

A cold, dense fog had rolled in from the Gulf, which made travel to our fishing grounds slow and difficult, but the hum of our live bait-well motor was enough music to our ears to keep us entertained as we moved to our first location.

It and the next two places were not productive. We were getting ready to move, and I started retrieving my last rig, only to find something heavy, like a crab holding on to my bait. It turned out to be a monster flounder.

That old boy grabbed my bait without so much as wiggling my line and settled quietly back into his bed. With a wet stringer over the next several hours, we added two keeper reds and released several small ones.

A strong incoming tide started roaring up the cut and reminded me of a hot spot that had given us lots of rod bending on other occasions under these conditions.

It was the right time and place to change a slow day hooking into one to remember. One giant flounder and 18 redfish resulted from a write-home-to-mother experience for two longtime fishing buddies.

All were released to give us pleasure another day, except enough to give a friend and his family a nice meal.

Bragging rights for the day went to Scott for the most and largest, a monster 28-inch red, who must feel lucky to be hooked by a fisherman that returned him to his home.

Larry Parks of Lake Jackson is author of “Dancing with the Waves,” a collection of stories and people gathered from a lifetime of fishing, which is available for purchase at The Facts.

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if only we could deposit the world's trouble in the boats of fisherman. All would be solved, and we would have supper to boot.

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