My father, Glen Roux, was instrumental in teaching me how to fish as a very young boy.
Both of my grandfathers participated in this adventure, as well. But Dad was my teacher and mentor.
As I grew a bit our fishing trips took on new and different looks. Some of my best childhood memories are of Dad and me wading the pristine, crystal-clear water in Courtois Creek in SE Missouri fishing for smallmouth bass and goggle-eye.
Dad always used a Johnson Century spin/cast reel. This green reel was a part of his “go-to” gear until I was a teenager, when he switched to a Garcia-Mitchell 300 spinning reel.
This was decades before either of us used a level-wind baitcasting reel.
The best lure back then was Heddon’s Humpback Rebel. This small crankbait was great because it floated until you began the retrieve.
So when the lure hit the water, Dad would let it sit motionless until all the ripples dissipated. He would then twitch the lure, imitating a wounded baitfish.
After a few twitches he would begin his retrieve. The bait runs as much as a foot under the surface depending on the speed of the retrieve.
The Rebel was very productive for us, but as hundreds of thousands of new lures hit the market since then, this little crankbait got lost in the tackle box.
Recently it has been resurrected.
My two grandsons, Ayden and Connor, are becoming pretty good little angers. I fish with them every chance I get.
Last year Dad was going through his old tackle and gave me a ton of stuff for the boys.
When I showed Ayden Great-grandpa’s Johnson Century, he really liked it. Together we put new line on it and he began using it with great enthusiasm.
Ayden continued to use the old reel thru last year’s fishing season with pretty good success. As spring arrived this year we began making plans to start fishing this season.
Great-grandpa Glen also provided both boys with loaded tackle boxes. There was a variety of hooks and sinkers. Bobbers and stringers and lures in each box.
And in each box was a Humpback Rebel.