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Timely Patterns For Fall Bass
Check out the bass fishing at these prime East Texas locations this month -- and use these patterns to score! ... [+] Full Article
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Texas Sportsman
Texas Family Fishing Fun

There's no way to talk about family vacation fishing trips without mentioning the Guadalupe River. During a day of fishing on the Guadalupe you can expect to catch bass, perch and even a stray rainbow trout or two. Wading is the generally the method of choice, and the lower areas of the river are usually optimal. Fly-fishing is the way to go on this river.

The Guadalupe is best known for its winter trout fishing and its summer recreation for tubers and rafters. At times there are so many people floating down the Guadalupe that they look like colorful confetti. Typically, float trips range from 1 1/2 to 6 hours in duration.

The best fishing will be from about a half-hour before sunrise until the first tubers, kayakers and rafters show up. Best flies will be black or olive wooly buggers. A No. 10 yellow or chartreuse popper will catch perch and bass all day long. If you're not into fly-fishing, carry along a couple of ultralight spinning rods and reels. Spool them with 4- to 6-pound-test line and you'll have a ball catching fish. The most effective lures will be 1/16- or 1/8-ounce jigs or spinners.

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Tourist attractions in New Braunfels are abundant. For example, you might check out Natural Bridge Caverns, the Natural Bridge Wildlife Ranch and Schlitterbahn Waterpark Resort. In nearby San Marcos, you can go to Wonder World Park.

Just a few miles south of New Braunfels is the historic town of Gruene. There are historic markers throughout the town. You can dine on the river in Gruene, and shop the day away at the many antique and specialty stores. One of my favorites is the Orvis store, where you can get updated fishing reports from the river. And if you want to hear some great Texas music, get yourself some tickets to Gruene Hall.

There are more state parks in Texas than you can shake a stick at. Some of my favorites are situated on lakes, so not only can you fish, but you can also camp, and let the kids swim or paddle around in a rented kayak or canoe.

Choke Canyon State Park, about an hour and a half's drive south of San Antonio, is one of the most interesting and fun places you can visit. It lies on 26,000-acre Choke Canyon Reservoir. The Calliham Unit of the park covers 1,100 acres; the South Shore Unit contains 385 acres.

The fishing at Choke Canyon Lake is as fine as it's ever been. After being about 25 feet low for years, the lake's back up to normal pool. The water's clear, and the spread of hydrilla is just extensive enough to conceal plenty of largemouth bass.

I've fished Choke a good bit over the years, and on my last couple of trips, the bassin' has been outstanding. Guide Jerry Dunn says that the bass fishing is as good as or better than it's ever been, adding that in June, the spinnerbait bite will be great.

"We've got an abundance of aquatic vegetation on the lake," Dunn offered. "It's perfect bass habitat. There are three ways to fish it. One is with a spinnerbait. Another is with a buzzbait. Or you can flip jigs to pockets in the grass. All will produce lots of bass. The jig tactic is usually best for big bass."

A lot of people are unaware of the noteworthy catfishing at Choke Canyon. The trotlining is fantastic, and fishing under roosting cormorants right about daylight can get impressive results. The crappie fishing around the many areas of flooded timber is great, too.

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