Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Back to Choke Canyon State Park

The original plan was to go to Matagorda Bay but we enjoyed Goliad so much that we decided to head to Coke Canyon and do some more birding and fishing. It wasn't a hard decision as Choke Canyon is one of our favorite places to stay. I took a wrong turn near Beeville and so a short sixty mile jaunt turned into 110 miles. Added to that was a strong wind and some of the worst Texas drivers we have seen.
Avoiding a head on collision with one that was passing on a curve and in a double yellow no passing zone. we arrived safely at Choke Canyon and registered with the park rangers. We got a great spot, but they are all great spots and set up the fifth wheel.
As soon as I got the bikes out I had to ride to a fishing spot and sure enough the fisherman were catching big fresh water drum. They were averaging five to ten pounds so the next morning I took some shrimp out of the ice box and headed to the place(Its right in the campground).
I had a few bites from small catfish when the pole twitched a few times and then headed for the gulf coast! Grabbing it in time I soon had a six pound drum on my stringer and dinner was assured,(Now dinner was always assured but now I had fish to go with the cornbread).
The next day I returned back to the same spot and got another drum and some more catfish. The main entertainment was watching three large men working a trot line from a small flat bottom boat. I swear it didn't have over four inches of clearance and they all were on the same side so that the back of the boat was actually out of the water! I waited for them to swamp the thing but they actually managed to finish without sinking.
A birding group was supposed to meet at the Seventy Six Acre Lake and so we arrived and waited but no one showed up. It was still ok, as we knew where to go and headed to the first levee. Blue winged teal and northern shovelers were in abundance, as were snowy egrets and black bellied whistling ducks,
We didn't see the northern jacuna, don't know if the gators got it or if it simply went in search of a mate, but we did see American coots and several common moorhen. Not a spectacular day but a good day none the less. Did I say that retirement was good?
Our last day in Choke Canyon was rainy and so we stayed in and watched Rockies baseball. We also tried to watch the Masters but the between the crappy coverage schedule of CBS and the crummy tv reception we spent most of the time enjoying the baseball game on the satellite. All in all a nice rest day and that's always needed when you are full timing. Clear skies.

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