Tuesday, September 26, 2023

Tails from the Trail: The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly


If you have fished for long enough, you will accumulate some stories that will forever be etched in your mind.  Some are good, some are bad, and unfortunately, some are just down right ugly!  In the first installment of “Tails from the Trail,” I will tell you one of my ugly stories in hopes that everyone can learn from my mistake.  This one could save you a lot of money and a ton of frustration!

Everyone who has ever fished Lake Gaston out of Eaton’s Ferry ramp will be able to relate to this story.  I am willing to bet that I am not the only one with a similar story to what I am about to tell.

Years ago, I was early into a week long stay at Lake Gaston.  My buddy and I were heading to the lake to try to give some Lake Gaston bass some much needed springtime exercise.  We had planned on putting the boat in at Eaton’s Ferry ramp and fishing the mid-lake section targeting prespawners for an upcoming tournament.  We were talking and having a good time until we were greated with a very sharp turn that I was not prepared for.  At that time I was pulling my Skeeter ZX202c with my Jeep Cherokee and as you can probably tell, I didn’t have the greatest breaking ability with the relatively small Jeep.  The boat pushed my Jeep around and I did all that I could to keep it on the road.  Unfortunately, I could not keep the trailer from jack knifing and we came to a screeching hault with my Skeeter tires touching my front tires!  Not the best way to start the day much less a week long scouting trip!

For those familiar with the area, I am talking about highway 902 and one vicious left hand turn.  See, we were unfortunate because someone had knocked over the warning sign that would have told us of a 20MPH turn just over the crest of the hill.  When we topped the hill traveling at more than 50MPH we were done!  Honestly, to even keep both vehicles on the road was a small miracle that we were fortunate to survive.  I am not telling this story to humiliate myself but to help people learn from my mistake.  Make sure you are cautious when traveling these back roads and do not allow yourself to become distracted.  I was fortunate that all I had to do was replace my trailer and while it was costly, it would never come close to the cost that we would have faced if I wasn’t able to keep my Jeep from going off of the road and over the 2-3’ drop off on the back side of the road.  It could have cost us something that money couldn’t pay for!

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