One ‘Oh oh’ right after another at Lahontan Reservoir
June 1, 2007
Last Thursday, Don Hettrick of Carson City, Rich Bachle of Fernley and I spent the morning fishing at Lahontan Reservoir in “Don H’s” boat.
And, as is typically the case whenever the three of us fish together, it is a memorable experience. Last week was no exception.
Don H and I met Rich at the North Boat Ramp at 7 a.m. and our adventures began immediately.
The first “Oh oh” of the day occurred when we took the canvas cover off the boat to prepare it for launching. I climbed into the boat, looked for our rod holders in their regular location and said “Oh oh.”
Don H asked, “What’s wrong?”
I replied, “What in the heck happened in this boat? I don’t see the rod holders and nothing else is where it belongs.”
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Don H chuckled and said, “Aw, Nancy (his wife) was in a cleaning mood the other day and she cleaned up the inside of the boat.”
I searched all over the boat for those three miserable rod holders and finally found them in the very last place I looked: In the storage bin under the back passenger seat.
Exasperated, I told Don H, “Geez, when you get home, tell Nancy I said to stay in the house and stay the heck out of the boat!”
Startled, Don H said, “Not me! If I told her that, she’d kill me.”
I responded, “Tell her that I said so, and if she gets upset, just tell her that Rich told me to say that.”
Then, Don H said, “Oh oh.”
I asked, “What’s wrong?”
He replied, “I forgot to change the spark plugs on the trolling motor the last time we used it. They got all fouled up. Get me a couple of plugs and the wrench and I’ll replace them.”
That was easier said than done due to Nancy’s cleaning frenzy.
The three of us looked and looked for the spark plugs and Rich finally found the spark plug boxes in a plastic bag. However, there were no new boxes in that bag.
Don H said, “Aw, just grab any two of them. They are all the spark plugs that I replaced when they were running rough.”
He put two of the old plugs in the motor and threw the two fouled plugs into the plastic bag (I guess for future use).
When we launched the boat, Don drove it at “Warp Five” speed to the far shoreline, and we rigged up for trolling for whatever might strike our lures.
Here are some of that morning’s other notable “Oh oh’s”:
1. Don H caught a large sized Sacramento Perch, he brought it up to the side of the boat, I netted it, asked him if he wanted to keep it, he said “No,” and I released the fish back into the water.
As soon as it was gone, I remembered something, turned around and said: “Oh oh, Don, you should have measured and photographed that Perch for the OSA fishing contest. It would have been an easy first-place winner in its category.”
He said “Aw, Bleep. I forgot all about that Bleeping contest. I could have beat out that Bleeping Norm Budden and won some money with that Bleeping fish.”
2. Then, later, on one trolling pass along that far shoreline, here is the sequence of consecutive events that actually happened:
I glanced over my shoulder, saw that I could literally spit on the shore, spun around and frantically shouted at Don H, “Oh oh, you’re taking us right into shore.”
He looked over, shouted “Oh oh,” made a 180 degree turn on the motor handle and gunned it.
Rich immediately shouted, “Oh oh, I’m snagged on the bottom.”
I shouted, “Oh oh, Rich, you and I just got tangled together.”
Then Don H shouted, “Oh oh, boys, I’ve got a really big fish on, and I can’t drive the boat and bring in this fish at the same time.”
With that, he stopped driving the boat and started reeling!
Don H shouted: “Oh oh, someone get the motor.”
Rich shouted, “Oh oh, we are turning hard.”
The boat continued to turn in a 360 degree circle, Don was reeling, Rich was tugging on his snag trying to break it free, I was trying to hold my pole with one hand and trying to reach for the handle of the trolling motor with the other.
Mercifully, the two replacement spark plugs gave up the ghost and the motor stopped running.
Don lost his wimpy 8-inch White Bass, Rich freed his snag, the boat drifted up on the shore and it took about 20 minutes for Rich and I to untangle that unholy mess of our two intertwined lines, flasher blades and lures.
Believe it or not, for the day, we caught and released more than 100 White Bass, 4 Sacramento Perch, 1 Walleye and 1 Carp (that Rich foul-hooked in the back).
The scariest part of this story is that we are planning to go back to Lahontan this week. Pray for us!
• Bet Your Favorite Pigeon
Bet your favorite pigeon that he can’t tell you how I diabolically got even with Nancy for cleaning up all the clutter in the boat.
If he grins and says, “Don rearranged all of the fish scent bottles that she had neatly lined up in a row,” his name could be either Don Hettrick or Rich Bachle.
• Don Quilici is the Outdoors editor for the Nevada Appeal.