For the longest time me and Capt. Berry Fraley have been trying to get in a boat together. We've crossed paths plenty, but never actually fished together. Today was the day... and what a day it was!

Capt. Berry fishes Nickajack and Nickajack Tailwaters primarily and has got the fish dialed in. He'd already been out and collected bait (threadfin) when I arrived.

It took a little while to find "the sweet spot," but once he found it we were "smokin!"

Oddly enough the smaller fish came first, but the longer we fished, the bigger they got.

The first big fish on the line I "long line released," but we saw it and Berry was grabbin' for the net net. Sadly it came unbuttoned and we really weren't sure if it was a smallmouth or a spot, we just knew it was big. But very soon thereafter Berry stuck the first big smallie.

Then we sort of went back and forth until he stuck a BIG spot. Before I could reach for the net, I got hit and we had a double... big brown fish and big spot. We just had to take turns getting our picture made with that pair.

Berry's spot weighed 4 lbs. 8 oz. ... We didn't weigh the smallmouth, same length but skinnier.

Later in the day Berry's son (Luke) joined us and showed Dad up pretty quick. All fish caught (then released) on threadfins, except for two or three I convinced to eat a Silver Buddy. We had one good keeper sauger along with some miscellaneous white bass and largemouth.

The water flow shut down at 11 am and the fishing slowed dramatically after that, but it SURE was fun while it lasted!

Read my book, "An Outdoor State of Mind"
"The outdoors is not just a place, it's a state of mind."