Fishing & Boating News

"Perpetual Hole" Paddling Strokes

More on White Bass -Kickapoo Creek and Sabine River

by: Michael Banks, DDS,

Photo by Michael Banks, DDS
Photo by Michael Banks, DDS
(Mar. 28, 2014 - Jacksonville,TX)

Folks, I have taken advantage of the spawning white bass run on Kickapoo Creek and the Sabine River this year. I have had a great time.

Kickapoo Creek, west of Chandler, Texas, north of Hwy 31 has become more and more popular for white bass fishing. There is less bank fishing on the Kickapoo than the near Neches River because of physical access.

Flat bottoms and even bass boats have filled up the narrow creek this year. I am not complaining about the crowding because I can get around in my kayak and still catch the limit of 25 white bass over 10 inches long.

Pictured are a dozen I kept on a recent trip. I actually caught more than a legal limit but only kept these for the table. A white bass this size usually weighs between 2-3 pounds and filet out very easy. The meat is white and very tasty, encouraging me to fish a little harder.

Fishing harder leads me to tell about my last white bass trip to the Sabine River. This year I have had three trips to the Sabine fishing with friend Barry in his flat bottom bass boats. Once we "slayed" the white bass with Barry catching 41 and me catching 40 in accurate accounting.

The next trip I took on with my kayak. The Sabine was up about three feet over previous trips and looking down the launch, the River was very intimidating. Summoning my courage, I put in and begin to paddle upstream. At least if the task was impossible I could come back down to the launch. But if you go downstream initially and can't go back up -you are in trouble.

On the Sabine there is a stronger current than on the Kickapoo or the Neches River, but I made it just fine. Actually, I paddled up- stream and downstream to each location I had fished in the motor powered flat bottoms on previous trips.

When fishing for white bass you look for "holes". One finds a hole by casting along a bank or an eddy until you get a bump or take. Then keep casting the same location to see if there are more fish in the hole.

I was using different colors of RoadRunners and Shinee Hinees. These are jig type baits preferred by the white bass. Some local fishermen I visited were using live minnows and doing very good.

Most times you catch 2-3 from a hole and then they shut off. You can keep fishing the hole until they turn back on or move, looking for another hole and hoping to find the "perpetual hole".

The Sabine is a friendly river. Everyone who goes by, waves and the common question is "how you doin'?" Some fishers will anchor their boat where they have found a hole. It is common courtesy not to cast into a hole someone is fishing. When I have to paddle through a hole someone is fishing I will always apologize.

I had fished all day and about 4:30 pm I paddled back toward the take out. I had caught 14 very nice white bass, not keeping any. I had had a good day, but it was about to become a great day.

I cast into an opening along the bank with trees on three sides and "bam" -a take on the first cast indicating a hole. On the next cast I had another take and then another and then another. I had found the "Perpetual Hole"!

For the next two and half hours I seldom cast into the hole without a bump or take. At 6:30 I called Rose Mary to tell her I was alright, but that I couldn't leave. I was within sight of the take out and knew I could take out even if it was dark. From the attached pictures you can see the CR 2517 bridge, near where the take out is located.

I positioned the kayak, stabilized against the trees on the downstream side of the hole so I didn't have to paddle to maintain position.

I don't know how many I caught and it doesn't matter. I had to have caught over 40. Twice I caught fish on three consecutive casts and once had catches on 4 out of 5 casts. I had a first time species catch of a yellow bass pictured below.

The perpetual hole is a dream for white bass fishers. The fish were "stacked up" in a small location -hungry and feeding. How do you leave? I finally had to say, "This is the last one" and with a few minutes of daylight left in that day, paddled to take out. This was a day of fishing I will never forget.

Next up is a kayak trip to saltwater for redfish, trout, flounder and whatever!

Till we put in again,
Michael -- Michael Banks, DDS Friends of the Neches River 606 Brookside Drive Jacksonville, Texas 75766 903-586-1551

Photo by Michael Banks, DDS
Photo by Michael Banks, DDS