My son and I went fishing Saturday morning with Sam Simons (associate of the esteemed Richard Simms) below Chickamauga Dam. This turned into a bit more of an adventure than I was planning because a cold front came through, bringing some rain. That wouldn’t have been a big deal, except that my son is only 5 years old and has only been on a boat once (for about 5 minutes).

That said, Sam showed his strength in dealing with young kids, especially as Austin went through his “getting settled in” phase at the beginning of the trip. I’m really proud of how patient Austin was – we managed to stick out the cold and rain for almost 4 hours, and in the end he wasn’t even asking to leave. We caught a nice smallie, hit a good quitting spot, and decided to call it while we were “ahead”. He’s a great kid!

He ended up catching his first smallmouth, first blue cat, first trophy fish, and almost his second trophy fish! He hooked a beast of a smallmouth (5-lb class fish) that did an aerial show and threw the hook. We will definitely be taking another trip with Sam in the future.

On with the pictures...

One of two ~ 2.5 lb smallies that he reeled in all by himself

A 30-lb blue and a ~12-lb blue that were caught back-to-back. There was some insanity on the boat going on there with Austin – that big fish was the first one of the day. What a way to break the ice!

A nice little blue that Austin reeled in on light spinning tackle, posing here with Mr. Sam
I'm hungry and tired. Don't poke my belly.