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You only turn 56 once! With that said, my goal in life is to do as many new things as possible…. dare I say it.... on my bucket list. The list contains many adventures that insure I live life to its fullest. This birthday weekend I marked one of these adventures off my list. This freshwater girl took on the saltwater. I traveled with a small group of friends to Matagorda Bay Harbor to experience reef fishing.

The day started off with meeting our host for the day, Captain Fern Gonzalez, owner of Gon Get’em Guide Service. Sounds simple, but there were no less than 150 boats at the Harbor that morning… boats everywhere… like a bass tournament on Sam Rayburn. Once underway, we traveled a significant distance out into the bay and then jumped out of the boat to wade fishing. I had purchased the recommended wade boots, so I was ready to go.

After a the requisite instruction to scuffle my feet on the bottom to prevent stepping on stingrays, and getting a demo on how to bait my hook with live croakers, I strapped on a wade belt to hold my bait bucket full of live croakers, a pair of pliers, a net and and a spinning rod/reel. Captain Fern offered to bait my hook and take my fish off when I caught one, but I gave him “the look” that told him ”I can bait my own hook and

land my own fish”- we quickly reached a great understanding.

We wade fished several hours before shifting gears to travel some distance in the bay for some drift fishing. Spinning combo in hand with approximately 4 feet of leader, popping cork and live shrimp, I was ready to go. It took me a while to adjust to casting. I am accustomed to slinging lures as hard and as far as I can. Under this situation, that resulted in me throwing my bait off the hook. So I channeled a little finesse and adjusted quickly.

I thoroughly enjoyed the day and the experience, proving once again that any day on the water is a good day. I loved it. I can’t say enough about Capt. Fern and his first mate Marcus Guajardo. They were courteous, helpful, well-mannered professionals. They were also very funny and entertaining and we easily became friends. I can’t wait to book another trip! The tally? Well there were no giants, but I did manage to catch several speckled trout- many small ones, and several keepers that would be welcomed additions to my table. Thanks guys!

Just a few years ago Texas angler Lanette Luce Childers would probably not have forseen how fishing would become her passion and a source of great friendships. She has become Secretary of the WOMENs BASS TOUR, in which she also fishes competitively, along with the Fun 'N Sun Couples Series and a few other selected events. We are proud to have her on our Pro Team, and thankful to benefit from her extensive connections in women's organized fishing, as well as from her sponsors, Rod Armorz, Dobyns Rods, Liquid Mayhem, Illusion Baits and Sport Threads. Lanette is Pro Staff for Pink Fishing, Inc. and a member of the Lady Bass Anglers Association .


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