The father-son team of Brian and Brennan Silcio spends a lot of time together fishing the Bayou Bienvenue area out of Chalmette, so they've got the bass figured out.
And the Violet anglers know those waters can produce really nice fish.
"Last week, we had some 4- and 5-pounders out of Violet," Brian Silcio said.
But none of that prepared them for what 15-year-old Brennan pulled to the boat Sunday (Feb. 267) — a 10-pound largemouth.
The duo was fishing in the main bayou when the Chalmette High School sophomor pitched a 3/8-ounce black-and-blue Bruiser Custom Jig tipped with Havoc trailer up against the point of some rocks on an old wooden bulkhead about 4 p.m.
"As soon as (the bait) hit the water, I felt something," Brennan said. "It almost took the rod out of my hand."
While he was confident it was a big fish, neither angler knew what was on the business end of Brennan's line.
"When she bit, she actually went under this boat dock and came up on this barnacle-filled pilling," Brian said. "I thought it was a redfish."
But Brennan kept pressure on the fish until it swam out of the obstacles.
"I was all on my knees and everything," he said.
And then the anglers got a glimpse at the fish.
"She swirled and I saw it was a bass, and I was like, 'Oh, man,'" Brennan said. "And then she jumped, and I was like, 'Oh, Lord.'"
The angler quickly buried his rod tip beneath the water's surface to prevent the lunker from jumping again, and soon the bass was at boatside. The elder Silcio quickly put a net under it and hauled it aboard.
"I was like, we got to get this thing to a scale," Brennan said. "I had it between 7 and 10 pounds."
The massive fish measured 26.3 inches, and weighed 10 pounds on the dot.
Brennan's catch was even more unexpected since the conditions were just deplorable.
"It was windy and there was a very high tide," Brian said. "The water was super high. My confidence level was nothing."
And the action had been very, very slow.
"That was the only bite I had," Brennan said.
His father only managed one other bite that afternoon.
"We only caught two fish," Brian said. "Just so happens, one was her."
Brian said he believes the fish was moving up to spawn.
"She definitely had been making a bed right there," he said. "She'd been working."
After some discussion, the young angler decided to have the fish mounted.
"It was a great father-son moment," Brian said.