Lake Norman & Mooresville

Fishing with Capt. Gus: So the guy looks at the talking frog and says ...

If you haven’t heard a fish tale lately, here are a few that might bring a smile to your face.

▪ An angler was taking a picture of a squirrel perched on a log lying in the water and eating a hickory nut. To his amazement, a large bass jumped out of the water, grabbed the squirrel and swallowed it. The fisherman returned the next day to try to catch the squirrel-eating largemouth bass. As he got close enough to cast, he saw the bass again. This time, it was putting another nut on the log.

▪ One day the Bill D. fishing show left the air without notice or fanfare. The show focused on catching big bass and showing bloopers that occurred while filming. Bill’s trademark was an orange letter “T” embroidered on his fishing cap. He never did a show without wearing the cap. Some questioned why it was canceled and as time passed others wondered if something really bad had happened.

After about six months, one of Bill D.’s biggest fans was surprised to see a headline on the obituary page that read, “Bill D., Fisherman and Famous Television Personality.” The reader was aghast, and thought to himself, “I knew it! I knew it! Bill D. must have been ill and died, just like I thought.”

Upon reading the full obituary, his sadness turned to joy. Bill was still with us. It was his largemouth bass that had died. You know, the same big bass that everybody watched him catch three or four times during each episode.

▪ This one is about a talking frog. It seems that an angler caught a frog by mistake. While unhooking it, the frog says, “If you let me go, I’ll grant you a wish.” The man unhooks the frog and puts it in his pocket. Upset, the frog says, “I told you I would grant you a wish if you let me go.” After a moment of thought, the angler replies, “I am going to keep you, because at my age I would rather have a talking frog, than a wish.”


The sixth Annual Lake Norman Wildlife Oyster and Shrimp Festival. The public is invited to this event 5 p.m. Oct. 10 at Langtree of Lake Norman, Exit 31, Mooresville. Tickets are available at For information:

Tips from Capt. Gus

Lake levels are considerably lower than normal. Boaters are encouraged to stay in main channels and only ply familiar waters. As an additional caution, make sure the depth finder’s low-water warning alarm is turned on.

Hot spot of the week

The shoreline surrounding the Lake Norman State Park has been especially productive for largemouth bass. Spotted bass are active at the lower end of the lake in Davidson, Reed and Knox creeks. Crappies are biting around bridges and boat docks in Mountain Creek. Best baits are small jigs garnished with live minnows. Best white perch fishing is along the edges of channels in water to 40 feet.

Lake conditions

Lake Norman’s water level is about 5.9 feet below full pond and 4.0 feet below full on Mountain Island Lake. The surface water temperature is in the low 80s in waters not affected by power generation.

Gus Gustafson is a freelance writer and a professional fishing guide: