Texas’ Best Kept Secret

The destination must be pretty special for us to leave the house at 5:15 a.m.  We loaded the ole Chevy down with the kayaks and gear and headed out. IMG_2926.jpeg80’s rock on the radio, windows down breathing in some fresh air, with Willis in the rearview mirror.

The sun wasn’t up when we got there but the water was already active with schools of shad. We knew before we hit the water not much had been biting for the past few months. The Texas heat tends to take a toll on lake and creek fishing. Hey, any day on the water is a good day, right? Catching just makes it that much better.

Headed to “our spot” in hopes of snaggin’ a Crappie our two, we noticed alligator gar snapping at the shad. A little further up the creek, as our yaks stirred up the water, the gar rolled in response. A Beetle Spin with a chartreuse, triple tail grub was my bait of choice. We cast along the bank as we made our way to “the spot” where a few days prior, our buddy Shane tore up some Crappie. Cast after cast, no luck. Eventually, I got a bump but no commitment. Eager, water still rippling, I cast right back to the same spot. Bam. A Crappie. Tiny but mighty. A Crappie, nonetheless. unnamed (27)

Stuart is a White Bass catching machine. Even with the Texas heat and odds against him, he managed to snag a few small ones. unnamed (14)

Further down the creek, Stuart noticed a school of White Bass feeding on shad. He heard the water splashing before he saw the commotion in the water. Of course, we did what any anglers would do. We started paddling towards the action. Sadly, by the time we got there, the frenzy was over.

We cast for a couple more hours. I hooked but didn’t land a nice size catfish on a Mepps. Stuart caught a few more small White Bass. Once the sun started heating up and got higher in the sky, we decided to call it a day. No fish to brag about so to speak, but we didn’t get skunked. Again, any day on the water is a good day. Catching just makes it that much better.

As we were heading back to the boat ramp, I decided to cast a few more times. Truth be known, I was just going through the motions, not expecting to entice any takers. Out of nowhere, something took my bait and took it hard. I set the hook and the drag started singing. Whatever was on the other end of my line started pulling me across the creek. “You got your drag set momma?” “Yes, Stuart.” “Let it play out, don’t horse it.” “Ok, Stuart.” It’s been the same back and forth for years.  I thought I had a monster catfish. To my disappointment it was only a Gaspergou. unnamed (18) Not much to boast about but a kick in the head to catch. Catch – Photo – Release and we called it a day.

No trophy fish today but great memories made on Harmon Creek. Looking forward to our next adventure.

Harmon Creek Marina, located in Huntsville, is one of Texas’ best kept secrets. I hesitated to bring attention to “our” little hideaway in the Piney Woods, that is until I got to know, Donnie.

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Donnie Robbins is the owner and operator of Harmon Creek Marina. He relocated from Farmington, New Mexico in 2015 to remain close to his son who was attending Sam Houston State University at the time. unnamed (1)

Donnie owned an auto repair shop in Farmington for 32 years. Harmon Creek Marina is now Donnie’s passion.

My family has been fishing Harmon Creek for the past five years. Since taking over the marina in 2015, Donnie has made many improvements. First and foremost, I have to brag on the bathrooms! These suckers are always clean. They are brand spanking new. They even have showers. Clean potties are much appreciated! Kudos Donnie!!

If you’re an angler, the little store at the marina is sure to please. Live minnows, worms, liver, dead shad and shrimp are readily available. If artificial suits your fancy, Donnie has a variety on the walls to choose from. Drinks and snacks are available as well.

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If you don’t have a boat but want to explore the creek or try your luck at fishing, boats and kayaks are ready and waiting for you. Donnie offers gas and electric boats for a half day or full day rental.

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If you don’t have the luxury of living close by, don’t fret. Cabins, RV sites and tent sites are available. The tent sites are waterfront and include water and electricity.

The pool at the marina is always clean and just waiting for some kiddos and families! Enjoy the refreshing water after a day of fishing on the creek.

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I had the pleasure of meeting this super cool young man after we got off the water today. Logan Parsons is 10 years old and lives down the street from Harmon Creek Marina. unnamed (3)When he isn’t in school, chances are you’ll find him hanging out with his buddy, Donnie. unnamed (5)Donnie boasted that Logan is “his right hand man.” He went on to say that “Logan was 10 going on 20.” I was impressed by this young man’s manners and the way that he carried himself. Folks, teach your kids to fish and they won’t want to go looking for anything else to get into. Logan helps Donnie out around the marina and “loves to drive the z-turn mower.” When I asked him if liked to fish with wide eyes he replied, “A LOT!” After talking to him for a while, I’m convinced if left to his own devices, Logan would fish every day from sun up until sun down. image_6483441 Now, that’s a kid after my own heart. He and I have already started planning a kayak fishing trip.

In the creek, catfish can be caught year round. IMG_2794.jpegCrappie are biting in the spring and white bass are spawning during the colder months.

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As we were leaving, headed back to Willis, I asked Donnie what was his favorite thing about owning the marina and without hesitation he said, “the people.” If you are looking for a great little weekend getaway, head on out to Harmon Creek. If you are coming in from Houston, don’t hesitate to give Donnie a call before hand. He will be glad to give you a report on water conditions and fishing before you head his way. He’ll take care of you and your family and you’re re sure to make some memories on Harmon Creek. (The Harmon Creek Facebook page is under construction but please visit when you get a chance. Harmon Creek Marina Facebook Page

 

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9 comments

  1. Was wondering how you were doing this weekend. You are so very blessed Julie! What a beautiful life you have…I have wrote something for you and I, it will come out Monday. I hope it doesn’t rattle you as its a poem based on a memory of mine concerning my mom. You have inspired me to write a bit more about her. That’s a really good pic of your husband on the water with the reflection on the water. You two are very very blessed!

    • Oh my goodness! I can’t wait to read what you wrote for us! I don’t think anyone has ever written anything for me before!!!! I’m so honored. I’m so glad you are writing more about your mom. It truly helps and brings awareness to mental illness from a different perspective. Thank you so much for seeing the beauty in the simple life we lead. We don’t require much. A few kayaks, some rods and reels and we are good to go. We’ve come a long way baby! 💋

      • My poem is a bit dismal but it’s the beginning of the stuff that needs to get out of me. I was telling my mother in law about you. She thinks it’s great I found someone who deals with that same “stuuf” have a nice time fishing.

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