Uncrack the Dawn
Blog by: Lloyd Tackitt , Texas 7/16/2019
I'll make a confession, I do not get up at the crack of dawn to go fishing. I will do that only when I'm meeting someone that wants to hit the water as the sun rises, but not when on my own devices, not anymore.
I've been getting up hours before sunrise for work since the late 60's. That's about 50 years which would be about 13,000 times by now, and still doing it. I routinely get up hours before sunrise. It has lost any appeal it may have once had.
When I don't have to get up, I don't. I'm much more likely to be fishing around 10am than I am 6am. And probably, realistically, more likely to be fishing at 2pm. Used to, when I was a punk-kid, I'd be fishing at the crack of dawn and fish until it got so dark I'd be afraid of stepping on snakes. I don't have that stamina anymore, but I can still put in a solid six hours in the Texas heat, and six hours at a whack seems plenty to me now.
I said confession, and it is, because not too many folks that are like me seem willing to fess up to this desire to sleep in. It seems almost shameful in a way, kind of like a sin, too lazy to admit to being. Most of the people I know and fish with aren't really crack of dawn fishermen either. I'll say "Let's meet up at the river." They'll ask "What time?", and I'll reply "What time suits you"" - and mean it. They'll say "Well, it'll take me a couple of hours to get ready and to drive there." I'll say "How about 10am?" With a look of pure relief they'll say "That's great!". They've been let off the hook of getting up in the middle of the night to be on the water at the crack of dawn. And so it goes, almost every single time.
Maybe this crack of dawn stuff is less widespread than I think. Maybe not. But I'll fess up to to liking to sleep in when I could be fishing the magical dawn. I've fished many of those magical dawns (and it is an outstanding time to fish too), but there's even better magic in sleeping in.
If I had to bet, I'd bet that most life-long-still-working fishermen are kind of like me. Those new to the sport may still thrill at the gray mists of sunrise slowly lifting as the sun comes over the horizon on a day off - I know I once did - but after a few thousand of those...well your mileage may vary as they say...and I admire your happiness in doing it, while I sleep in of course.
After I retire it might be different, but I wouldn't count on it. If you happen through my stretch of river, look for me well after the sun has climbed the sky, and I've had a pot of coffee. And maybe lunch.
Hope to see ya'll out there someday! Wear your sunglasses!