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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I decided to take a trip down to Choke Canyon with my good friend Gary Freeman.  Many of the FOM Tourney anglers will know him from the FOM staff while some of you ABF guys who have been around a while may remember him from some of the Saturday Morning Tournaments or the Grilled Halibut cook out at the 2006 HHJ finale tournament.  

We rented some of the shelters/cabins at Calliham for a couple nights and basically camped in the park chilling out and cooking when we weren’t on the water.  It worked out pretty good and I’d recommend it to others who want to fish Choke Canyon on a shoestring budget.  Anyway, here’s a breakdown of each day we were there.  

Weather:  There was a minor cold front that came through a day before we got there.  Our first fishing day started out cool (40F) and then warmed up to (80+F).  No wind, an absolutely beautiful blue bird day.  The winds picked up out of the south on the second day at about 10-15 with gust to 19 or more.  Temps starting in the mid high 50s warming to 80s.  This weather remained that way until we left on day 3.  

Water Conditions: The lake seemed to be a few feet low.  Not exactly sure what the norms are but we could tell by looking at the water lines on the bank that it was low.  Temps all over the lake started out in the 68 degree range and by the afternoon hours reached 70-71.  Not sure what the normal clarity is for Choke but we observed it to have a brownish-olive green stain with about a foot visibility before we lost sight of our lures.

07APR09 Tuesday
It turned out to be a beautiful day with glassy calm waters and warm weather.  Caught a fish on the very first cast at the jetty next to the ramp that morning but as the day wore on it became apparent that it was going to be a slow day of fishing.  We only boated 12 fish between the both of us.  The biggest was caught by Gary and it weighed 3lbs 13 oz.  All fish were caught with lightly weighted TX rigged plastics (Hogs, honchos, and beaver type baits).   We fished 3 fingers, Possum Creek, Jetties at Calliham ramp, and South Shore.

08APR09 Wednesday
The wind picked up out of the south and so did the fishing.  The wave action really helped us out today.  We boated 24 fish all ranging in the 1-2 lb range with a handful of 3’s mixed in the bag.  The highlight of the day was an 8lb 5oz chunk that I caught at the beginning of the afternoon session.   Most of the guys that know me know that in the past few years that April is usually my big fish month.  An 8lb choke fish isn’t a bad start to keeping the tradition alive.   Again we used T-rigged plastics (Honchos, rattle snakes, and beavers). The areas we targeted were 3 fingers and Willow Hollow.

09APR09 Thursday
Our last morning on Choke Canyon didn’t produce any hogs but we did manage to boat the same 1-2 pounders that we’ve been catching the past few days.   The wind was about the same as it was the prior day.  We started a little differently by cranking some submerged grass with shallow divers early.  This produced a few quick fish in the boat.  As the sun got higher we went back to using plastics that had been working the past few days.   We pulled off the lake around noon with a finally tally of 15 fish for the day.  All fish were caught around 3 Fingers and Calliham.

Overall it was a great trip done on the cheap.  We caught fish but just couldn’t get the legendary Choke Monsters Bass bite going.  

8lb 5oz Bass

Some of Gary's fish

Calliham Shelter #16

Sunset view from the Shelter
 

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Sounds like an awesome trip. I have been wanting to do that for a while...how much does it cost to rent a cabin? Did you put the boat on the trailer between every session or did you just beach it close to the cabin?
 

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Great report Yung,

You have always set the standard of reports that many should strive for!

Looking forward to seeing what you have on the video camera, hope you have the battle with the big one on there!

Eric
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks every one.  It was a really good time.  A nice easy relaxing get a way.  One of the other nice things about the trip was all the wildlife we saw.  Deer, Armadillos, Javelinas, snakes, gators, Rio Grande Turkeys, and all kinds of other birds.  One time I dropped Gary off at the bank to answer natures call and wouldn't you know it.  A ~10 foot gator swam up the cove.  We caught it on video but no stills.

Anyway, the shelters are at Choke Canyon State park in the Calliham Unit.  They cost $35 + tax a night, come furnished with electricity, an outdoor water faucet, fire ring, grill, 1 picnic table, and an AC unit.  You have to bring cots and bedding.  Basically it's one open room with 4 walls, a roof, door and windows.  They also have primitive camp sites and sites with just power and water hook ups for tent campers all the way up to RV's.

The shelters  book up for the weekends pretty quick.  There seemed to be plenty of them open during the week days. At least when we were there.

Links to the information you want:

Facilities:    http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/spdest/findadest/parks/choke_canyon/#fac

Fees:    http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/spdest/findadest/parks/choke_canyon/fee.phtml
 

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Good ol cabin #16, remember it well, or at least part of it. The shelters are the way to go, inexpensive and if it rains or the wind gets to howling you have a safe retreat.

Great fish Yung, I need to get back down there. My last trip a couple months ago we got blown off the water all day sat and sun so we only got to fish friday but that was a 25+ fish day and was well worth it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Aggie_fisher09,

To answer the question about beaching the boat by the Shelters. We put the boat on the trailer after every session. It was easy enough. However, you could beach a boat if you wanted to. Some people next to us did. It's a little shallow and you might get your feet wet depending on where along the shore you land but it can be done.
 

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Lucky dog. :cool:

I love that lake.

We used to to do 9 dayers. Leave out on Friday night, sleep at the gate, then launch/fish Saturday morning, then grab a campsite, and spend the next 8 days catching.

Never have fished that lake when it was full or close to full. The highest water level I've ever fished there was when it was 17' low. 22-27' low was always the norm.

I need to get back.
 
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