I would characterize today’s fishing trip with Robert as short and sweet. Normally, when I take Robert out, it is going to be at least an eight hour day of fishing or more. With Robert being the family man that he is, he was going to spend the evening watching his youngest son play baseball. With that in mind, today’s river smallie fishing adventure was going to take place in the afternoon for just a few hours of fishing. After a cold front a couple of days ago, that knocked the water temperature back into the low fifties, I was happy to see that the temperature in the Little Pigeon had risen to sixty degrees. Also, I had the rare chance yesterday, to hit the water on my own to do some scouting. As much as I fish the Little Pigeon and French Broad Rivers, there are always discoveries to be made as far as finding new fishing hotspots. I did stumble upon one of those new hotspots in approximately eight foot of water in the lower reaches of the Little Pigeon. I was looking forward to putting Robert on that spot, in the hopes that the fish were still there and feeding. You never know at this time of year, during the pre-spawn migration, how long the fish are going to be in a certain location. It is a case of here today, and gone tomorrow. Of course, that is the nature of river smallmouth on any given day, regardless of whether they are pre-spawn or not. With the cloudy skies, high humidities, and both the Little Pigeon and French Broad at fishable levels, it felt like one of those days when the smallies would turn on. It took a little while for the activity to ramp up as we approached the late afternoon hours before the smallies started to strap on the feedbag. The spot that fished the best was that new location I found yesterday. Robert caught six quality smallies in that “hole” ranging from sixteen to nineteen inches. The picture of that nineteen inch fish is included in this report. It is worthy of note, that I believe for the first time in my life, I may have laid my hands on a largemouth-smallmouth hybrid. It is also known as a Mean Mouth Bass. Robert landed a fifteen inch fish that had what appeared to be the head of a smallmouth, with the rest of the fish resembling a largemouth. I have handled thousands of smallmouths over decades of fishing, but I have never seen a fish that clearly exhibited the morphological characteristics of both species like this fish. Both smallmouth and largemouth are found in good numbers in this section of the river, so it would not surprise me that this was indeed a Mean Mouth. By the end of this abbreviated trip, Robert had landed eleven smallies that averaged seventeen inches in length. Short maybe, but always sweet when you’re catching river smallies.