I’ve got to admit I wasn’t expecting much.
Chad Wiley, a Bassmaster tournament pro from Pineville, asked me to meet him at Joe’s Horseshoe Lake Marina in Monterey.
Except for the cold front that had blown through the night before, I wouldn’t have been so pessimistic.
The wind was predicted to gust up to 25 miles an hour, and the sun that was forecasted didn’t want to peek out from behind the heavy, low-hanging clouds.
When I walked down the ramp to jump into Wiley’s boat, I was greeted by water that looked like two Yoo-hoo trucks had just collided on the bridge across Cocodrie Bayou.
To make matters worse, I was dressed more for the forecast high of 58 — rather than the actual temperature of 45.
But I didn’t drive 2 ½ hours for nothing, so I bucked up, drew my hood down and rode along with Wiley to wherever the heck he was going.
“Last weekend was my first time to ever fish here,” he announced, as he came off plane near a bridge where a guy in a small aluminum boat was trying to jerk up a few white perch.
If the cold front had diminished my expectations, Wiley’s revelation just crushed them to smithereens: I had driven halfway across Louisiana to fish a lake with a guy that had only fished it one other time in his entire life.
He attempted to explain as we idled under the bridge.
“I spent most of the day fishing that lake we just came from — Horseshoe — and wasn’t doing anything but hauling water,” he said. “I figured I had to do something, so I pulled up and ran over to Black River