“There has to be at least 100, maybe 200 boats at different times lined up and fishing from Rockport to the tip of Ingleside and up to the Lighthouse Lake,” says fishing guide, Jay Nichols.
“The areas of Estes Flats from around Bird Island and Big Bayou, there will literally be about 20-50 boats in an area that I usually see only about 5-10 boats.
“It’s getting so bad when someone sees you set a hook on a fish they literally come down right on top of you, start fishing right beside you.
Nichols says all anglers need to work on being courteous to others.
Anchoring…100 yards…boat ramp…cleaning station
Anchoring…Be aware if you anchor and fish in the middle of well known navigable channels or guts that anglers run to keep from running aground. “Everybody runs these areas. We come by and they get upset.” Maybe another spot would be better to fish.
100 yards…“If I pull up on a spot in the morning and somebody has beat me to it, I’m not going to edge on top of them. I will sit back at least a 100 yards, unless they call me in.”
Around the dock or pier:.. “We put our boats in the water and wait for our clients,” said Nichols. “We try and stay out of the way as far as we can. Eventually someone is going to get upset because someone is trying to get on the water. I tell anglers to scoot right up beside me and I will hold their boat for them while they park their vehicle.”
At the boat ramp…be ready to unload or load and get out of the way for other anglers.
“We had one guy a few weeks ago that backed his boat in the water, stopped his truck, got out, got into his boat, backed it up off the trailer, pulled up by the edge of the dock, kind of looked over at the cleaning station, turned, and drove off.
“We were sitting there looking…he just left his truck in the water. We were thinking maybe he is just going to run the boat for a second. Another guy pulls up, and says, ‘Hey, I need to get in the water. Whose truck is this?’ We replied that he drove off and hasn’t come back yet.
“That guy got in that fellows truck, drove it up the ramp, parked it. The other angler didn’t come back for four or five hours later.”
Other people come in and block the cleaning station. “They pull their boat right up to the cleaning station. Drop your ice chest and pull back out.
Nichols concludes most people try to be courteous, but probably 5-10 percent just don’t care. This group includes everyone who fishes. “Everybody has a right to the water, but there needs to be more people who understand courtesy.”