By Travis Huber, Augustana University, Class of ’18.
A few years ago, I had never seen the water so high at our favorite Platte area fishing spot. The entire shoreline we normally relaxed on and fished from was completely under water. The big tree that we used for shade was now so deep in the water that I could practically swim to the top branches. I didn’t know if we could expect to catch much, but my brothers and I figured out that it was pretty good fishing standing on the trail that was now underwater.
We all stood a little over knee high in the water, side by side, casting lures into our flooded beach. We figured that our trees that were usually behind us were probably now our best bet at catching fish by casting near them. Bass especially tend to like being around shrubs or plants in the water, so that’s what we tried. The plan worked out well and we caught a few bass between the three of us. What I didn’t expect though, was catching a walleye out of what couldn’t have been more than six feet of water.
I had decided to cast straight forward into the open water and just bring it toward me through the underwater flooded grass, but I got a bite almost right away. I knew my fish felt different than a bass, but when I got in closer I was surprised to see that it was about an eighteen inch walleye, not a bad catch for an unexpected bite.
My brother Jeremy happened to have a little fish basket with him, so we tied it off to a weed underwater and let the fish basket rest near us so we could add up our catches. We couldn’t believe that a walleye had just came out of such shallow water, so of course we kept fishing the same spot in hope of more.
After fishing for quite a while, we were now casting into the beautiful South Dakota sunset glaring off the water. We caught a few more bass and maybe another walleye or two, but it was relaxing to just stand there and fish in what felt like a completely new area.
It was a pretty great brotherly bonding moment and I’m glad my wildlife photographer sister Nicole caught a picture of us out there, because it turned out to be a pretty sweet photo.
Travis is blogging for The Outdoor Campus as part of a 20-hour internship in public relations.