We just met up with Brent Chapman, and he seemed a bit discouraged with what he is finding. He hinted that he'll probably stay in Pool 5. "I'm eliminating water today, which is why I came down here today, and I've found what I wanted to find." Which was nothing.
With how many boats locked through, we haven't seen many anglers in Pool 4. There's either something going on in Pool 3, which is further down river from us, or folks have eliminated much of Pool 4, like Chapman, and have headed back to Pool 5.
We're going back to Sullivan's, which has been the most popular spot in Pool 4.
Marty Robinson used Wednesday as proof that he found a better place to fish last weekend. He was hoping to add another hot spot Wednesday, one that was a little closer to the Red River South Marina launch site, but that didn't happen.
"There's not much to report today," Robinson said. "I've caught one, about two pounds.
"The water temperature is up a little today. A lot of the backwater areas have muddied up. The few where you've got decent water, there's a lot of pressure on the fish."
We are watching Alan Glasgow, who is exceptionally talkative and confident and pitches and flips with grace.
He said he had a great practice and today continues that trend, even though he's fishing his secondary water.
He said he knows where he'll start on Friday but it's not here.
As the first ever College BASS representative in the Bassmaster Classic, Andrew Upshaw is the youngest angler in the 49-man field. But he's got the confidence of a Classic veteran.
At noon Wednesday, Upshaw said, "I'm about to be off the water. I've got one more spot I want to hit before I go in."
Upshaw has a lot of experience on the Red River, especially for someone so young, and he thinks that local knowledge might pay off this week.
"It's helped knowing those little spots that fish get in here," Upshaw said. "They are places where a guy might make two or three flips and move on. I know I can make 50 flips in there and catch one."
Upshaw pretty much has his game plan set for the opening day of the Classic Friday.
"I'm going to hit two places the first day," he said. "I've got a spot where I think I can catch a couple of big ones early, then I'm going to spend the rest of the day in another spot."
Martens says he's fishing water today that he hasn't hit since one of his first trips here, "old-school stuff."
His baits will be pretty conventional, too. No horsey heads or hair jigs he claims. Somehow that seems questionable.
He's a perfectionist of the first order, so even if the baits are fairly conventional you can bet he'll implement a few tweaks.
We're following Aaron Martens into a backwater and knocking the fire out of some monster stumps.
In fact, as I type this the boat is tipped on its side on top of one.
Chris says Aaron is "blazing his own trail, which is true in more ways than one. Unfortunately he can't show him a more direct route -- that would be a violation of BASS rules -- so we'll follow and continue to roll with the punches.
Poche has now moved across the river into a little hole just around the corner from the main channel. Very different from the giant flat he just left, deeper and much clearer.
The water is holding steady at 60 degrees.
A few bites and he's not jerking on anything, but nothing is getting him too excited. He says that up in the day it generally picks up.
He makes for the narrow opening to the hole where the water is blowing in hard and works over a blowdown tree with a spinnerbait. No bites.
Dennis Tietje of Roanoke, La., fished on the Elite Series last year, but he's taking a medical leave this season after undergoing back surgery. That doesn't mean he's lost interest in what's happening on the Red River this week.
Tietje called photographer James Overstreet to get an update on today's practice and offered an interesting observation about the fishing here at this time of year.
"You can fish and fish without getting bit, then you might find 40 of them," Tietje said. "They run in pods."
After a brief interlude on a sand bar that required my boat driver to get out and push, we are back in business.
We just ran into Bobby Lane who said he's caught "about 20." Somehow I think he wasn't being entirely truthful.
Nevertheless it's a better line than those from the sandbaggers who say they didn't get the first bite in practice.
We've moved to the back of Sullivan's and there are six boats within a half mile of each other, and Browning, Takahio Omori and Kevin Wirth were all within a cast of each other not too long ago. All were throwing squarebill crankbaits.
The blessing back here is also a problem; there are so many stumps and cypress trees that it's hard to pick out a good bunch.
It's all about covering water, and there's plenty of it back here.
More anglers are filing in; Josh Polfer just idled back here and there's another competitor on his heels.
Stephen Browning said the area we caught him earlier was his best spot so far. He caught morefish there in 30 minutes than he caught in the rest of practice.