It has been said lightning doesn't strike the same place twice. Evidently, Chris Wood is fishing equivalent of Thor, the Norse god of thunder. For Wood, piscatorial lightning struck at least three times recently at Lake Wheeler, perhaps more depending upon your bass-catching standards.
On March 18, the N.C. State senior landed a 9-pound, 7-ounce largemouth bass and then topped that personal best with a 10-pound, 2-ounce toad (that's bass-speak for a large fish) later in the trip.
He also had two 3-pound, 8-ounce bass to cap a four-fish stringer of 26 pounds and change after launching his boat around 4:30 p.m.
Wood, a textile engineering major and member of N.C. State's BassPack fishing team, used a half-ounce football head jig in less than 4 feet of water to catch the fish.
But wait, there's more.
On March 20, Wood was back at Wheeler with fellow BassPacker Jason Livingston. Wood boated a 5-pound, 5-ounce bass in the morning, and he dropped Livingston off at the dock around 2 p.m.
"I went over to one of the spots where I caught the 9-pounder, about 100 yards away," he said. "I was throwing straight to the bank and dragging the jig back. The fish hit with a real strong 'thud.' "
Wood said the big bass tried to head for deeper water, but he landed the fish within 30 seconds.
After catching the first two lunkers, he said, "I already had the net out."
Wood put the fish in his live well and headed to the park headquarters, where the bass registered 10 pounds, 4 ounces on a digital scale.
For a bass angler to catch one honest-to-goodness (weighed with witnesses) 10-pound bass is a career achievement. To catch a 9-pounder and a 10 in a week is very impressive. To catch a 9 and two 10s in a week is fantasy territory.
To top it off, Wood went back on March 21 and landed a 6-pound, 14-ounce bass. That gave a best-five fish "limit" of 42 pounds for the week, and a perfect storm of bass fishing.