Standing on the bow of the boat ready to take a shot whenever the opportunity presented itself. Bowfishing a tough way to fish.
I don’t get too write to many pursuit articles so I thought I’d take the liberty here in my column to pour one out on y’all! Enjoy.
The alarm clock split the darkness like a lightning bolt! I spilled out of the bed like sour milk and half-crawled, half-stumbled to the shower. The morning haze slipped away as the water rushed over me nothing like a shower to get me wondering how the rest of the day was going to pan out.
My buddy, Nate Davey, a fishing and bowfishing guide on Fairfield Lake, near Fairfield, Texas, also had bow in hand and managed to miss a few early morning tilapia – that is not normal behavior for him but I figured I was obviously wearing off on him. After accepting it was not going to be his day, he put his bow down and began the tedious job of trolling the banks with me standing on the bow of the boat ready to take a shot whenever the opportunity presented itself.
Try as I might, my inability to connect was purely a result of high shooting and poor visibility. He’s the kind of guy that really does get more excited about someone else’s harvests than his own, God bless him – he was taking my failure personally but certainly he had no fault.
We slipped into our last cove of the day and skirted the shallows watching the new nests for squatters. They were largely unoccupied and if there was one we consistently jumped them from their nests as we pulled in too close trying to see, again the visibility was a brutal.
We began to talk about heading back in. I began to reflect back on last year’s countless misses. What was it going to take to arrow just one lousy fish today? Like my turkey hunting, I resolved to hunt until the last minute. Standing again on the bow I caught a glimpse, just a flash mind you, as a tilapia fled the protection of reeds only 10 yards away.
I came to full draw then waited, blindly leading his approximate position. I caught a flash of white as he belly-rolled in the shallows and let the arrow fly. I didn’t think “aim low” this time so I was a bit shocked when it happened. I stuck him with such force that I literally pinned him to the muddy bottom, an exclamation point on tenacity! I stood in awe as I watched my arrow dance for a few seconds then stop. I reeled in and knew he was a good fish. When he reached the boat, I realized I had a real trophy, one of the largest tilapias I had ever seen no longer moved on the head of my arrow he was a beast!
If you haven’t tried it, bowfishing is quite a thrill! What’s your excuse? Get out there!
Bowfish hard, bowfish often.