COLD and OVERCAST and RAINY! Two of those make for excellent conditions to chase Chain Pickerel; unfortunately, the rain delayed our leaving for Daingerfield and kept us off the water our first day. No matter; we had fun ringing in the New Year in our little warm and toasty RV playing board games and listening to the fireworks (and gun play) of others.
In choosing Daingerfield SP, I searched for how to fish for Chain Pickerel in Texas and discovered only one article. However, it is by Rob Woodruff, so there aren't many others that can compare. We brought our paddle boat to scoot around the lake and headed to a spot near our campground. Cody had caught the toothy critters in this area years previously, so armed with 3 and 4 weight rods with floating lines and poppers, we set out to see what the waters held this New Year's day. It didn't take long for Cody Bell to have Chain Pickerel On! either. Cody used an orange, chartreuse, and yellow popper that just delighted the fish. I had a couple of hits but no catches. My popper was chartreuse and black, and I think that not having that flash of orange and/or yellow made most of the difference. Weed guards are a must, which is something I don't often say. We fished the lily pads and downed trees close to the shoreline. Sometimes those Pickerel were a hair too early or late in their hits, but watching them miss was a treat. While we were cold at 39°F, the Chain Pickerel were aggressive in their takes and misses (for a brief video).
Due to even colder temperatures on Wednesday, we drove around East Texas visiting Atlanta and Caddo Lake State Parks for future fishing ideas. We did fish the Lake O' The Pines tailrace for Yellow Bass, and while they were hitting topwater, neither Cody nor I could get a fish to take whatever fly we threw at them.