We just caught up with Gerald Swindle, fishing in what he called the " cappuccino river." No keepers for the G-man yet. He's pulling up to move on to another spot.
Jamie Horton and Aaron Martens got close enough to share a few woes of the day, then Horton trolled to the opposite bank of this shallow cut near Taylor Bayou. It's about 25 yards wide.
Martens has caught five short fish while we've been here. Horton hasn't had that many bites, but he just landed a "quality" bass. After taking a long look at it on his measuring board, Horton held up the fish for a photo and then put it in his livewell.
Alton Jones shows off keeper No. 2. Photo by Chris Smith.
Shaye Baker and I just caught up with Aaron Martens and Jamie Horton, who are flipping a Taylor Bayou cut, heading toward each other. Neither has a keeper in the boat yet.
Martens boated his first fish of the day shortly after we arrived. It was well short of 14 inches. Martens said he missed his only keeper bite of the day, a 2-pounder first thing this morning.
"I caught 35 fish (during practice) yesterday and not one keeper," Martens said. "I was in a different area."
Horton said he'd only caught three short fish today, and one of those he caught twice.
Both anglers are targeting water hyacinths at the base of cypress trees — standard cover on the Sabine River.
Terry Scroggins just caught keeper number three. He's on a roll baby!
We're estimating he has between 9 and 10 pounds in the livewell. That's an excellent start for this tournament.
With many anglers running toward the Louisiana side of this Sabine River fishery, I checked in with my good friend Andy Crawford of Louisiana Sportsman. His take:
"The main reason anglers are running east is the drive to catch bigger fish. The Sabine River, from all the reports I've received, has a lot of fish; it just doesn't have a lot of big fish. So when a pro is thinking about how to win, they're obviously coming up with a strategy to catch the biggest fish possible: 'Should I stay on the Sabine and be satisfied with 11 pounds, or should I run two hours and perhaps catch 14 pounds?'
"The long run sounds like the best bet."
Notice the green? That's the color of Sandy Hook Elementary. Dozens of anglers are honoring the memory of the lost at Sandy Hook during the first Elite event. Read more about it in Don Barone's column.