How stressed are you? You probably either rolled your eyes in response to that question (in a “are you kidding me with this question” kinda way) or maybe you laughed out loud because, you know, we’re ALL stressed right. Whatever your reaction to the question, it’s no surprise that most of us are running around like chickens with our collective heads cut off just trying to keep up with all our responsibilities, obligations and promises throughout our daily life. Fun and fishing are usually on the backburner when you’re an adult.
It all gets too much sometimes, doesn’t it?
Here’s a quick story to highlight how hard we work for the people we love and to achieve our own dreams.
The fisherman and a businessman.
There was once a businessman who was sitting by the beach in a small Brazilian village.
As he sat, he saw a Brazilian fisherman rowing a small boat towards the shore having caught quite few big fish.
The businessman was impressed and asked the fisherman, “How long does it take you to catch so many fish?”
The fisherman replied, “Oh, just a short while.”
“Then why don’t you stay longer at sea and catch even more?” The businessman was astonished.
“This is enough to feed my whole family,” the fisherman said.
The businessman then asked, “So, what do you do for the rest of the day?”
The fisherman replied, “Well, I usually wake up early in the morning, go out to sea and catch a few fish, then go back and play with my kids. In the afternoon, I take a nap with my wife, and evening comes, I join my buddies in the village for a drink — we play guitar, sing and dance throughout the night.”
The businessman offered a suggestion to the fisherman.
“I am a PhD in business management. I could help you to become a more successful person. From now on, you should spend more time at sea and try to catch as many fish as possible. When you have saved enough money, you could buy a bigger boat and catch even more fish. Soon you will be able to afford to buy more boats, set up your own company, your own production plant for canned food and distribution network. By then, you will have moved out of this village and to Sao Paulo, where you can set up HQ to manage your other branches.”
The fisherman continues, “And after that?”
The businessman laughs heartily, “After that, you can live like a king in your own house, and when the time is right, you can go public and float your shares in the Stock Exchange, and you will be rich.”
The fisherman asks, “And after that?”
The businessman says, “After that, you can finally retire, you can move to a house by the fishing village, wake up early in the morning, catch a few fish, then return home to play with kids, have a nice afternoon nap with your wife, and when evening comes, you can join your buddies for a drink, play the guitar, sing and dance throughout the night!”
The fisherman was puzzled, “Isn’t that what I am doing now?”
The beauty of fishing
Here we are, back again after that wonderful story that makes us envious of the simple fisherman who provided for his family in the morning and then returned home to enjoy life for the rest of the day. It isn’t realistic in 2018 that we would live that kind of life, seriously, this guy never had a kid who played football or basketball and he probably never had to pay for a prom or braces. No, this isn’t a realistic life, but boy there are times we all wish we could be the fisherman and live simply, quietly and feel content.
You can have a part of it though, just ask any angler you’ve ever come across. They’ll tell you that there is nothing like the feeling of being out in nature, where it’s quiet and serene. Nothing compares to the enjoyment you feel of flinging that rod over your shoulder and watching your lure disappear under the water as you wait in anticipation for nature to answer back with a tug.
This is when you can, just for a little while, feel at complete peace.
Putting up a good fight
There you sit. Your line has been cast, and as you wait calm and relaxed, it happens. You feel that tug, and there is nothing like it! It’s you and nature in a battle of sheer will! Will you conquer or be conquered?! The answer takes knowledge, skill, practice and even a bit of luck! As you reel your line in you pull this way and that on the rod, giving the line tension and letting it release with skills that only comes from years of practice.
One final pull is all it takes and as you bring your trophy fish out of the water. Success! Oh, what a feeling. You look at the worthy opponent now hanging on the end of your hook and smile as you mentally pat yourself on the back for a fight well fought and a job well done. Do you get your prize everytime you get a bite? No, not always, but win or lose you’re thankful for the opportunity to try.
That’s the beauty of fishing. That satiated feeling of having gotten away from the rat race and back out into the wild, and if you didn’t come back with fish – you came back with great stories to share. It’s all so worth it and you miss it already…before you even leave.
Fishing on the Frio
Considered by many of the best places to fish in Texas Hill Country the Frio and her sisters, and Sable are popular places to enjoy some fishing.
The best place in Concan to get your bait, fishing gear, your kayak, or pretty much anything else you need for fishing, including some advice, is Josh’s ‘Frio River Outfitter’. It’s the place everyone talks about and for good reason.
Here’s Josh’s story:
“Josh” Granberry Shandley II is a third generation avid fisherman. His grandfather, Jack Shandley, was known as the “Old Pro” or “Kickapoo Kid” on his daily radio fishing report in the early 70’s. He was the Grand Old Man of Lake Livingston – The Guide’s Guide – Mr. Jack.
Josh’s father Gran Shandley aka “Pop” also loves to fish, so much so that he fishes competitively in both fresh and salt water tournaments. The fishing trips that Pop enjoys most however, are the ones which his grandkids can tag along! Pop is often at the store helping out or enjoying some gelato and will let you in on some of his fishing tips and tricks if you ask him!
In the summer of 1991, Josh’s dad, Gran asked Josh if he would like to open a bait & tackle shop and rent a few inner tubes. So, at the age of twelve, Josh opened “Josh’s Landing” in a spare room of his dad’s real estate office building in Leakey, Texas. Using a broken freezer for minnows and an old metal desk for his cash drawer, Josh learned the retail business along with how to patch inner tubes very quickly.
As the years went by, the business grew along with its popularity, and each summer walls were knocked out of the real estate building to accommodate the growth of Josh’s store. In 2005 Josh asked “Uncle Bob” Shandley, owner of Canyon Log Homes and a home builder for forty-five years, to construct a new 4,500 sq. foot building. In the summer of 2006 the Concan store was opened with a rustic interior of 110 standing trees and timber hauled from New Mexico – a real site to behold.
Josh’s mom, Keitha Shandley or “KK” as her grandchildren know her, also had a part in the construction of Josh’s Frio River Outfitter! She shared both her eye for interior design and her creative talent in the store. Just wait until you step into the woodsy feel of Josh’s and see it with your own eyes, without doubt you will admire her hard work! The store is one of a kind fashioned in true hill country style; rustic décor is everywhere! She even has a section inside Josh’s called Mountain River Trading Company! It boasts Rustic Cabin and home decor merchandise. You will find a large assortment of candles, flowers, vases, art, wall and table decor. Step into the woodsy feel of Mountain River Trading Company…and find your rustic style treasure.
January 2015 was the grand opening of Gran’s Guns in Leakey! We have a HUGE selection of both guns and ammo! Come by and get a Frio River souvenir.
Josh’s is home to the always fabulous Frio Gal Boutique! Tessa is always stocking the boutique with gorgeous outfits and accessories! Our clothing selection is extensive and
it doesn’t stop there, custom Kurtmen handbags and boots, Pink Panache jewelry…, the list goes on and on. If you are a Texas queen looking for something that is 100% Texan, you HAVE to stop by and shop or check us out on Instagram and Facebook! We ship everything for free!
Today, the name on the building is “Josh’s Frio River Outfitter.” When patrons and vacationers come by to see the new store, their comment is always, “Oh my gosh, Josh!”
Josh got married January 7, 2012 on the beautiful Frio River in Leakey, to his bride Tessa. Some exciting things have happened to Josh in the past few years but the most exciting is the newest additions to the family. Born on March 21, Gran Shandley III, and named after his “Pop” who we love and admire. Tessa and Josh couldn’t be happier to introduce him to you! Now Gran is a big brother to Princess Eileen, she was born May 5. Tessa, Gran & I couldn’t be more in love with Eileen, she is just precious. We are thankful for all of our Blessings.
At Josh’s we pride ourselves in having the absolute BEST customer service! Each and every summer we have a great team of young locals, always happy & ready to serve you. We are here to make your vacation that much more enjoyable! There are many stores on the Frio River but few that have been around as long or that can compare to the beauty of the one of a kind woodsy, cabin decor you find when you step into Josh’s! If you want to go to the most unique experience please come to Josh’s.
Being a family store, Josh’s makes sure to have something for everyone in the family, so please stop in and visit a while, have some coffee (espresso, lattes, frappes and cappuccinos) or homemade gelato (Italian ice-cream). We look forward to seeing you!
Josh, Tessa, Gran & Baby Eileen are always around… unless of course they’ve gone fishin’
Here’s some sage advice to get your best anglin’ game on with some advice from members of AustinBassFishin.com. These are a group of folks who fish the Frio consistently and offer advice to other anglers who want to make the most of their fishing trip:
Matt Warren who is a Senior Member is said to have logged 5,340Frio River tips and gives this advice:
I live right down the road from the Frio and fish it all the time. I use a 1000 series Shimano with 6 pound test, a small beetle spin and a very light action rod. We wade fish in various spots and in the better spots, you can catch 40-50 fish a day. Keep in mind most a little bream (blue gill, longear, greens, rio grande cichlids, et al.) but its still a blast. Every once in a while, you will encounter some really nice ones and the occasional decent sized bass. I caught a 5 pound bass last year. Its not trophy fishery by any means but the tranquility, numbers of fish (in the right spots) and scenery will leave you wanting more. Good luck.
I have an old town canoe that has been down almost every river in the hill country and west Texas cept the Frio. It’s scarred up but I repaired it with some E6100 that Waylon gave me a while back. It’s seems like it’s going to work perfect so I’m organizing a float for me and another fella in the group who is an angler.
Chitown who is also a Senior Member on the site ads this advice:
I had a blast floating the Frio last year and catching a bunch of small lmb and guads on an ultralight setup. Threw a 4 inch finesse worm on a 1/16oz spot remover and must have caught 40 fish in a 3 hour float. Everyone floating looked at me like I was crazy fishing amongst all the people, but the fish didn’t seem to mind. I don’t think I caught anything over 14 inches though. There was a guy on hear a few years back that had a blog that talked about fishing out there and he caught some bigger fish from time to time. I seem to remember seeing something about an 8lber he caught on a more remote part of the river. We floated a stretch in between Leakey and Concan.
Hookandbullet.com gives this advice:
Frio River is a stream located just 1.6 miles from Three Rivers, in Live Oak County, in the state of Texas, United States. For Fishing License purchase, fishing rules, and fishing regulations please visit Texas Fish & Wildlife. Please remember to check with the local Fish and Wildlife department to ensure the stream is open to the public. Now get out there and fish! Check out our Fishing Timeschart to determine when the fish will be most active.
The best times for the best time
You deserve the peace and relaxation that comes with getting out there on the water. June and July are really busy with tourists, and going then is fine but you may have more company around you than you like. August, September and even October are some highly recommended months to fish. Kayaks and canoes can help you with your excursion as well, allowing you to get out to places you want to fish, but can’t reach from shore.
Whenever you choose to come though, you’re always welcome here, on the Frio. And don’t worry, we here at the Rustic Retreat will back up any of your fishing stories – no matter how big or tall.