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Not your usual catch

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One of the lagoons that we fish has a lot of wind blown thick, soupy weeds and algae that piles up that provides some good cover for bass. There are a few small breaks in it and because it's so dense it's generally a pain to fish. But we all know it's fun to toss a frog over cover and have the bass come crashing through the crud even if the hookup rate is low.

 

So the other week I'm fishing the frog over this gunk and get a pretty good hit. I wait a second for the fish to take it downward and set the hook. It feels like a decent size and has a pretty good fight. I'm fishing over elevated railroad ties, through the gunk and then over weeds so I yell to my son to bring the net. We never reach way down to the water with only our hands from an elevated position here in SC and the attached picture shows why.

 

Instead of a nice, big bass a small alligator hit my frog and he wasn't about to let go anytime soon. When I got him near shore he just sat there on the weed bed with the frog in his mouth and wouldn't let go. So I picked him up out of the water a bit and that just made him mad. He spent nearly 5 minutes spinning and thrashing until he finally had enough and let go.

 

This wasn't our first encounter with a gator. Last month when I was reeling in a 4 pounder a 4-5 foot gator made a bee line for the bass as I was reeling it in. On this lagoon it was about a 5 foot drop from the elevated railroad ties to the water. As I go to bring p the fish my rod tip snaps. My son grabs the net, lays on the ground reaching down as the gator comes barrelling towards the bass. My son bopped the gator on the head with the net and scooped the fish to preserve my catch.

 

The small gators are a nuisance and you try and fish around them. But when the big gators show up we usually move on to another lagoon. Whether you're catching them or not it's always exciting fishing here in the South Carolina Lowcountry.

baby-gator.jpg

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Holy cow! I've had a couple of instances where small gators have lunged at my topwater lure, but I never hooked one or had it hold on like that. 

 

??????

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we don't have any of those in Indiana, and don't want any!! I would go to another county instead of another lagoon. but now if it's legal I do like gator tail!!:drink-eat:

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17 hours ago, lonnie g said:

we don't have any of those in Indiana, and don't want any!! I would go to another county instead of another lagoon. but now if it's legal I do like gator tail!!:drink-eat:

X2 here

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Here's a bigger gator from the other day that followed in a 2 pounder that I caught. The photo is looking down from up top the railroad ties on the old golf green. This gator hung out there waiting to ambush another catch and would not leave, so we went to another lagoon. BTW, I'm NOT leaning over the edge. Too scary. I held my phone over the edge hoping I would not drop it in the water.

 

Oh - and if one of these hit my bait or catch I'd cut the line. When I fish I keep a knife in my pocket just in case that happens.

 

bigger-gator.jpg

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I must say, This is really cool thanks for sharing!

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That's a big lizard. I'll take my chances with the 'naders, you southern guys can have them things. 

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Now that's combat fishing!!

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That's crazy stuff!

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OMG, I'm glad we don't have those beasts here. I would have **** my pants :ph34r:

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Well this certainly beats the bullfrog hitting my top water frog a couple weeks ago!

That adds a different element to fishing!

 

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It's funny because before reading your post I looked where you were from (we spend a week in Hilton Head every year so I know Bluffton pretty well), and figured this is how the story was going to go.

 

I was golfing once at a course in Bluffton and saw one of those big boys in the water hazard pond.  I hate those things.

 

You carry a pocket knife, I'd want to carry a 12 gauge. :o

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25 minutes ago, Cargojon said:

You carry a pocket knife, I'd want to carry a 12 gauge. :o

 

I recently accepted a job in the field of stormwater management and that's going to put me around lagoons every day and the one thing that scares me is the gator just under the water that you can't see or don't see until the last second. I'm seriously considering carrying a very big machete strapped to my back like something out of The Walking Dead.

 

I'm accustomed to seeing gators sunning themselves on the banks or cruising in the water so they're not that big a deal if you keep a decent distance away from them. With fishing they're more of a nuisance either going for your bait or trying to grab the fish you're landing. Some will just sit there and let you know you're in their territory. But if they get aggressive with our baits or catches we just move to the next lagoon. It's easier than getting in a bad situation with one of them.

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I respect Gators but am not skeered of them. It's something you get used to in Fla.

I used to wade fish the st Johns with them around and never had any get aggressive.Some of my friends wouldn't go with me though.My wife went with me on one of our first dates and the only thing she asked was me to carry her through the fringe of swamp to the hard bottom of the river.I was more than happy to oblige!?

But she wasn't scared either or at least didn't show it.

 

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17 hours ago, N Florida Mike said:

I respect Gators but am not skeered of them.

 

It's not the gators you see that are the problem - it's the ones you don't see :o

 

We bank fish on an abandoned golf course and the thicket around each lagoon grows deeper every day. You can see some of that in the photo below. It's the ambush gator that hides parallel to the shore in the thicket that worries me the most. Luckily we've spotted those before getting too close. Lately it seems that the best fishing spots are the least accessible.

07-04-2017a.jpg

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I've been around Gators all my life and never had one be a problem but all it takes is once, right ?. When my kids were elementary age I would take them with me in the river and they'd mostly swim while I fished.With all the splashing around one day a gator approached seeing what all the commotion was and when they quit splashing he lost interest.Of course,I made them get up on a dock.

But when I have a kid with me I'm more vigilant.I honestly worry more about moccasins though.

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