Pensacola Hawg Hunters
Bass Club

Founded In

John Buck
"John's Club Report"
Covering The Pensacola Hawg Hunters
Email: John Buck

Escambia River
January 18, 2003

Escambia River
Total Fish Caught
Total Dead Fish
Total Fish Weight
15.40 lbs.
Total Year Standings
Total Fish Caught 77
Total Dead Fish 0
Total Fish Weight 105.80 lbs.
~ Tournament Winner ~

Neil Springstead
4.55 lbs
~ Tournament Big Fish ~

Rich Carnelius
2.35 lbs.
Place Name Fish Weight Place Name Fish Weight
1 Neil Springstead 3 4.55 2 John Buck 2 2.90
3 Rich Cornelius 1 2.35 4 Jeff Weaver 2 2.35
5 Mack Cramer 1 2.20 6 Brian Metcalf 1 1.05

Also Fished
Lee Brannon, Paul Sullivan, Troy Beedle, Ron Fairbanks,
Walter McCartney, Pete Potter and Frank Beckwith

~ Escambia River ~

Cold, cold, freezing, freezing are ample descriptions for the Hawg Hunters January tournament.
High blue skies and north winds about 10-15 and an extremely low tide also greeted the 13 brave HH'ers on this fine morning. Water temp was in the upper 40's and I think the air temp eventually climbed to near 40 by mid-afternoon.

Walter McCartney was my partner for the day. Walter and I had fished together a few months before and I knew we'd have a good time even if the fish weren't biting. Wally is a knowledgeable fisherman and has a wealth of stories to share. We started out the morning fishing a little ditch alongside the main river. We had to keep dipping our rod tips in the water to clear the eyes of ice. I started fishing a black worm and immediately missed a hit. A bout 50 yards down the bank I got another hit but this time found paydirt and landed a nice 1 1/2 lb largemouth. The clock read 6:40 AM and I just knew that we were on to a good bite. Another 45 minutes on the bank without so much as a bump changed my mind.

We left the ditch about 8:30 and made a stop at the mouth of the thermal canal. While I dug the bottom with a worm, Wally sanded the area with a crank bait. He soon hooked up with what we both thought was a nice fish, but as luck would have it, the 3 lb fish had stripes on it. We stayed there a short while longer with no more luck and then headed to a creek up river. We made our way back into the creek and started fishing. Out of the wind the sun felt great. The ice on my deck finally melted around noon. We worked a deep hole in the creek about 18 ft, and I managed to pull a short fish out of the heavy cover. Again 1 fish and that was it.

Next we ran to the Williams ditch area and started fishing the creeks. I was pitching a jig and pig and Wally threw a spinner. I managed to get a hit in some cypress knees but it was a large jack fish. Wally chunked the spinner in a little cut through and pulled out a chunky spotted bass. It was about 1/16 inch too short. By then we decided to run back to the ditch where we started and finish the day. We hit the ditch quickly but with no luck. We then moved across the river to a deeper bank and I landed my 2nd keeper of the day, again on a black worm. Wally got a hit on the next cast but missed it.
By then it was time to head for the scales.

At the scales there were a lot of long faces but Neil Springstead didn't have a long look. He's found a few fish, 3 weighing 4.55 lbs to take 1st place. My 2 little dinks weighed 2.90 lbs and took 2nd.
We had a tie for 3rd with Rich Cornelius with 1 fish weighing 2.35 lbs and capturing the lunker honors and then Jeff Weaver had 2 fish that also weighed 2.35 lbs to tie for the 3rd slot.
Most of the fish were caught from Gulf Power south to the mouth of the river.
Fish were caught mainly on jig and pig, worms, and crank baits.
It was definitely the toughest tournament we've had in a long time with only 6 guys weighing in fish.

The Hawg Hunter Awards Banquet was held on January 24 at the Seafood Shanty. Everyone in attendance had a great time. Dave and his better half, Jenny, did a wonderful job with the program. We all had fun with the raffle and the play money. Everyone was trying to find ways to stretch their dollars and several combined shares to gain advantages. Thanks to all the members who made it to the activity. I think that the wives even had fun with everything. Congratulations to the "TOP SIX". They were: 6th Neil Springstead, 5th Fred Raby, 4th Mac Cramer, 3rd Rich Cornelius, 2nd John Buck, and 1st Brian Metcalf. Brian set a new mark in our club by being the only person to win Fisherman of the Year honors for 3 straight years. At the other end of the spectrum, Lee Brannon set a new club record for the only member to be awarded the "Slammer" for 3 consecutive years. CONGRATULATIONS BRIAN AND TO ALL THE MEMBERS OF THE TOPS SIX……..BETTER LUCK NEXT YEAR LEE!

‘Til next time.
*Keep your hooks sharp!

Creek Chub