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I went out for a trip to photograph fellow Jackson team member Henry Jackson for an article he is working on. We got on the water and quickly went to work getting the shots we needed. Henry had to cut out after and hour for other obligations but I figured I would hang around and fish for a bit. The water was cold and clear and I started working a jig in a deep hole. In a few minutes I had a good hit and as soon as I set the hook I got a good rip of the drag. After a nice fight a 19” spotted bass came to the boat. A good friend and his mom were fishing from the bank so I paddled over for a quick picture. I eased below the point they were on to give them plenty of room to fish and anchored up next to an eddy.

I pitched a wacky rigged worm on a jig head and was soon hooked into another good fish. I could tell this fish was very stout and I was trying to baby it on my light rod and 8lb test. It would dog away and I had to feed it line and I still hadn’t seen it yet. As soon as I saw the first turn in the depths, I could see the vertical stripes and I knew it was a shoal bass. Shoalies, as most of us call them, are only found in a few river systems in the Southeast and are very special to the folks that chase them. It seemed like an eternity of give and take before I led her to the side of my Coosa. After paddling over for another picture I watched the beautiful shoal bass swim back to the river. It occurred to me on the way home from the river that I have only caught two shoal bass over 20 inches long and both were while I was photographing Henry for a project. I am beginning to think we need to get back on the water for another shoot!