The early light from the sun had just begun to peak over the horizon as the skiffs pulled into their designated blinds on the edge of Port Bay, near Rockport.
The temperature was a balmy 65 degrees, but a howling wind out of the south brought hope that ducks would fly.
The LSON crew of Craig Nyhus, Conor Harrison and John Keith, along with Capt. Scott Sommerlatte, hunted two blinds about 300 yards apart.
Craig and John got the shooting started when the pair fired two shots at a group of decoying redheads. Their shots were true and not two, but four birds fell into the decoy spread. Craig and John had finished their limit of redheads with two shots, but the morning got tougher for the two from there.
Conor and Scott had a slower start, but got the shooting started soon after sunrise when a flock of scaup decoyed perfectly, and Conor dropped one drake from the group. Scott quickly followed up with a pair of redheads, filling his limit, followed by one more redhead drake dropped with shot from Conor’s 12 gauge.
From there, the morning cooled off for both groups of hunters, as the warm temperatures and high hunting pressure sent birds for other parts of the bay.
Scott got a pleasant surprise around 9 a.m., when a mottled duck responded to Conor’s calling and passed a little too close to the blind. Scott made a tough shot directly into the sun to score the first mottled duck of the year for the LSON crew.
Several more scaup ended the morning, with Scott’s yellow lab, Sunny, executing two perfect retrieves.
The group returned to the lodge tired and hungry, but happy after a fun morning spent with friends and a few ducks.
The hunting should pick up in the coming days as a cold front descends on Texas, but the action was good enough this morning to produce 13 ducks between the four hunters. And there is always tomorrow.