Photos courtesy of Capt. Gus
Anthony Valentin holds a trophy spotted bass.

If you’re a fisherman, you’ve probably told some tales. Here are a few.

Two guys were fishing at the coast when they caught an octopus about three feet long. Capt. Joe, who was running the boat, was reluctant to bring it on board, but the other guy said, “I love calamari and I want to take it home to eat.” Joe was reminded of another trip when a hooked octopus latched on to his arm and left red welts for weeks. So instead of unhooking it, he just left it hanging over the side just above the water.

The seas were rough and each time a wave passed, the octopus would clasp on to the side of the boat. The more Joe looked at the eight legged animal, the more squeamish he got. A few moments later, he noticed the sharp beak in its opened mouth as one of the tentacles tried to grab him.

Not wanting to appear afraid, he waited until the angler wasn’t looking, and cut the line. For a moment it remained attached to the side of the boat, but then it climbed on board. Capt. Joe screamed as it slithered across the deck before finally slipping through a scupper at the transom. The angler sighed as he saw his calamari diner escape. Suspecting that Joe had cut the line, the angler vowed to even the score.

The next time they met, Capt. Joe was presented with a can of tuna fish. The caption printed on the lid read: “To Capt. Joe, The Chicken of the Sea.”

A lake resident watched an eagle flying overhead. It suddenly dipped its wing and began to circle a pair of Peiping ducks. The man rushed inside to get his camera. Upon his return, the eagle was gone and only one white duck was left sitting on the bank.

Peiping Duck

Peiping Duck


Two anglers were arguing about who should or should not be fly-casting in a popular pool on a mountain trout stream. During the heated chat, one yelled to the other, “You know what? There’s a fine line between being a trout fisherman and looking like a fool wading in the water.”


A surf caster landed a large red drum on a lonely stretch of beach on North Carolina’s Outer Banks. His trophy was over fifty inches long, which made it bigger than the slot limit, so it had to be released. When the happy angler pushed the button on the camera, nothing happened. The screen was black; the battery, dead. Begrudgingly, the fish was returned alive to the pounding surf without any proof of having been caught.

Thought for the day: Happiness is catching a big fish AND taking a picture.

Tips from Capt. Gus: The next time you catch a fish, peek inside the mouth or cut open the stomach to see what it has been eating. Then mimic the look with a lure, or better yet, catch a similar live bait in a cast net.

Hot Spots of the Week:
Spotted bass fishing is excellent throughout the day. Best baits are soft plastics and jerk baits. White perch continue to hit minnows and jigs in water to fifty feet. Sabiki flies, rigged in tandem with a jigging spoon are catching more than one fish at a time. Hybrids, along with a few stripers, are being taken on live baits and artificial lures in the main river channel between Markers 18A and 23 and in Mountain Creek.

Lake Norman is about 2.5′ below full pond and is 1.9′ below on Mountain Island Lake. The water surface temperature is in the low sixties.