Went up to the Wateree Dam to start off and get some bait. It went mighty terrible. There was very few shad and we only ended up with 6 in probably 25 throws before my buddy tossed the net in the river. We did get 2 decent size gizzard shad though which will in turn lead to my story. So we headed to the 378 bridge and went to my preferred spot that is a little downstream of the bridge beside a couple of fallen trees. So we are fishing nothing much happening when my buddy hooks a decent size fish and it heads straight to the trees and that was the end of that. So we sat there for what seemed like forever and we got down to our last bait fish. It was one of the big gizzards. So I sliced it up and my buddy took the head and I took the middle and split into 2. So casted out and maybe 15 minutes later one of my rods is loaded up. I pick it up and the drag starts sizzling. So I am freaking out since I know its heading to the trees. So I grab the reel to stop the line and start walking back upstream. Well I had to stop or I was going to cross my other line. So I crank down the drag a bit and start reeling as much as possible. I am making progress and right at the tip of the closest tree the fish comes up and makes quite the splash and all the sudden snap. I threw the rod on the ground a decided I might need to take a walk down the bank before I break it in half. This was easily my personnel best fish. The only other big one I have caught did not pull drag like this guy. I am going to guesstimate 20+ #'s. What makes this all worse is that I use 50 lb Power Pro braid and I was talking it up to my buddy about how much I love it and trust it. But I believe it was mostly my fault for two big reasons. One is I don't know what to do to keep the fish out of the trees other then reel as fast as I can and two I was looking at the line earlier and it had some frays in it, but I left it be because I am apparently a dumb a$$. So basically I need some advice on keeping fish out of the trees. Keep in mind I am on the bank, not in a boat. And how often do you inspect your line? It was obvious I should have trimmed it, but for whatever reason I did not.