Rain Makes Bass

What a difference a year makes. By this point last spring we had gone nearly three months without measurable rain and most Texas rivers were dropping fast. By June we were well into the “drought of record” and by September a good portion of the state was on fire. In my 47 years I’ve never seen Central Texas look as bad as it did before the first significant rains finally fell in October.

Looking around Austin, now, you would never know what we suffered through last summer.  Granted, most of our local lakes are still well below capacity; but the rains have returned, the wildflowers are knee-high, and the rivers are running clear and strong.

Earlier this week, I had an opportunity to re-aquaint myself with the local bass fishery that was basically absent during 2011. Local guides Shea McClanahan and Alvin Dedeaux have had a great early spring on the Colorado River, below Austin, and I was anxious to check it out. Shea took us on an eight-mile float with both fly and spin gear and we found near-perfect water flows with mobs of healthy largemouths and Guadalupe bass.

In keeping with my ongoing fixation on the view from the waterline, I spent most of the day with my underwater gear and nabbed some cool new scenes for my bass archive. Click here to see the rest of the shoot.

Shea McClanahan and Jody Gibson on the (Texas) Colorado

A Guadalupe bass running off with a crawfish pattern

Serpent orgy

Shea working a hole for “Guads”

Jody with a chunk-o-bass

Popper action

Largemouth on a bubblegum fluke

North of eight pounds (bonafide)

Be free, you dern hawg

8 Responses to “Rain Makes Bass”

  1. BobWhite says:

    I love the bass stuff… haven’t seen anything like this. Awesome!

    ~ BobWhite

    • Tosh says:

      Thanks Bob!

      It’s my ongoing challenge: find new ways to photograph stuff that’s already been photographed a go-zillion times.

  2. Mat Trevors says:

    Awesome shots, Tosh. Absolutely love the very top shot of the popper!

  3. Alex says:

    Awesome stuff, Tosh! What focus mode do you generally shoot when the camera is in the case? Does it generally do pretty well when the water is colored up?

    • Tosh says:

      Alex – clarity is always an issue, especially when there’s suspended grass and sediments. Since I’m normally shooting at the surface, I use auto-focus because there’s usually wave or current action that’s causing the camera and subject to bounce around. Keeping everything framed while turning the focus knob is really tough in that situation.

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