red river is a shallow river as rivers go. during summer pool most of the deep outside bend holes are less than 20 feet deep. there are no skips in red river so i catch fresh shad or buffalo for my bait. this trip i had a hard time finding shad and the ones that i finally found were small, about 3 inches. my wife was out of fish because the high water all winter has kept us off the river. so we went with intentions of catching some eaters. the river was still about 3 foot high and the water was pretty muddy. i like to drift the banks that have been covered with large rip rap and this particular bank was a long slow outside bend. the upper end of my drift started in 16 feet of water and progressed through a 28 foot deep hole then ended in 16 foot water again. this drift was about 1/2 to 3/4 mile long. i caught most of my fish in the deepest part of this outside bend but the big one was at the lower end of the hole in about 17 feet of water. i was using a 7/0 kahle hook with the head half of a small shad and a tiny 2 inch bluegill on the hook. my rod was a 7foot black river x-heavy action. the reel was a quantum cabo pt30 baitcaster spooled with 50 pound power pro braid. i was using a 3-way swivel rig. the fish hit and immediately ran upstream stripping about 100 feet of line. all that i could do was hold on and let the rod and reel do their job, which they did perfectly. the fish was back and forth for about 10 minutes before i ever broke water with it. i knew it was a big one but when it broke the surface i was stunned to say the least. i have a large landing net with a 33 inch bow and it was a chore trying to get this hog to head into the net head first. i finally got it in the net after several tries and got the fish into the boat. i headed downriver 4 miles to where my wife was fishing for some pictures. my coffey scales showed 72 pounds and my wife was amazed to see such a huge fish in "her" river. water temp here was 71 degrees.
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