UPCOMING EVENT: TOYOTA SERIES - 2020 - Lake Eufaula

Garrison-Head top leaderboard in Galveston

Garrison-Head top leaderboard in Galveston
Brandon Garrison (left) and Brennan Head, both from Lafayette, La., lead after day one of the FLW Redfish Series Western with two redfish weighing 15 pounds, 12 ounces.

GALVESTON, Texas - The fishing conditions were perfect, but the fishing was not. Out of 109 teams fishing the FLW Redfish Series Western out of Galveston Bay today, only 73 teams got their score cards punched.

Light winds and bright skies favored the redfish anglers, but Galveston Bay's complex fishery sent most of the teams to distant waters that were a little easier on the eyes, so to speak.

Many teams opted for the long runs so they could sight-fish, if even for a few hours, instead of trying to decipher Galveston Bay's underwater shell bars and hidden redfish structure.

Such was the case with Brandon Garrison and Brennan Head, both from Lafayette, La., who ran 75 miles to collect two reds weighing 15 pounds, 12 ounces and take the day-one lead.

Garrison and Head reported fishing an area that is as deep as a bathroom sink - and that's during high tide.

"Our boat drafts about 8 inches of water, and we were in 7 inches," said Garrison.

"We put all of our tackle, coolers and batteries up on the nose of the boat just so we could pole into this area," Head said. "And even then, we could barely make progress with a push pole."

Where the team did make progress was in catching two of the right-size redfish.

"We caught three fish, two keepers and one over-slot fish," Garrison said. "We only had two and a half hours to fish, and we caught our second keeper after two hours and 15 minutes of fishing."

Both anglers are concerned about getting to their fish on day two.

"Tomorrow, the incoming tide is supposed to be an hour later," Garrison said. "And we needed every drop of that high tide today to get around, so we're a little worried about it."

Nesloneys second

David Nesloney Sr. and David Nesloney Jr., both of Rockport, Texas, weighed in a pair of redfish for 15 pounds to move into second place.

The Nesloneys made a "very long" run to the south to "more familiar waters."

During the day they found four different schools of reds in their area.

"Each school had 10 to 15 redfish in it," Nesloney said. "And we caught two or three fish out of each school, so we probably caught about 10 fish. We were fishing 2 to 3 feet of water, and we could only see the fish when they would come up to the top and push water; that's when it got really fun.

"We laid off them today, but we're really going to pound them tomorrow," he added. "I can't wait to go back."

Redden and Clancey go ultraskinny for third

Tim Redden of Houston and Tim Clancey of Adkins, Texas, poled around in mere inches of water today to collect their two-fish catch of 14 pounds, 13 ounces for third place.

"At times, the fishes' eyes were out of the water," Redden said of his team's shallow-water fish. "The only lure we could get to them was a topwater."

The team caught four keeper reds, all of which were in the upper end of the Texas State slot limit of 20 to 28 inches.

"They are all the right size of fish, but the problem is they are ultraspooky. I mean, if a bird flies overhead, it blows your whole day," Redden laughed.

"We fly-fish a lot, and we really had to rely on our fly-fishing knowledge when approaching these fish," Clancy noted. "They are so sensitive, one false move and you're done. It's pretty nerve-wracking - neither one of us slept very well last night thinking about how spooky these fish are."

Lewis and Mock fourth

Rick Lewis of Houston and Skipper Mock of South Padre Island, Texas, caught about a dozen redfish today with their best two keepers weighing 14 pounds, 9 ounces for third place.

Lewis and Mock went fishless most of the morning, but when the tide got right on their best spot in the afternoon, it got red hot.

"We stayed close," Mock said. "It took a while for this place to turn on, but when it did, we caught a bunch of fish. At one point, I caught four in a row."

Although Mock could not see the fish, he could tell they were there by recognizing what Texas redfish anglers call "mudboils."

"The bottom here is so silty that, when fish move and push away, they leave mudboils in the water," Mock said. "The water might be 2 feet deep, but they still swirl the silt around with the power of their tails, and it looks like puffs of dust coming from the bottom."

Watkins fifth

Rounding out the top five teams is the team of Jay Watkins Sr. and Jay Watkins Jr., both of Rockport, Texas, in fifth place with 14 pounds, 5 ounces.

Rest of the best

Steve Reupke and Andy Mnichowski are in sixth place with two redfish for 13-13.

Mickey Eastman and Wayne Webb are in seventh place with two redfish for 13-9.

Bill Blodgett and Todd Cearley are in eighth place with two redfish for 13-0.

Ralph Frazier and Charles Parodoski are in ninth place with two redfish for 12-12.

Mike Underbrink and Larry Henley are in 10th place with two redfish for 11-11.

Day two of the FLW Redfish Series Western begins a 6:30 a.m. Saturday at Teakwood Marina located at 400 Tiki Drive in Galveston.

Tags: rob-newell  headline-story  2005-08-05-galveston 

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