ELEPHANT BUTTE, New Mexico - In the latest edition of "The Nate-ure Report," ABC-7's Nate Ryan is bound for waters unknown at Elephant Butte Lake in search of the ultimate catch.
For help, Nate enlisted the help of veteran fishing guide Frank Vilorio of Land of Enchantment Fishing and Hunting Adventures.
With the lake opening backup on June 1st, Frank offers guides daily and he’s been charting the waters of New Mexico for almost 3 decades.
“I love taking people fishing," says Vilorio, who fishes year round. "I love teaching kids how to fish. That’s my passion.”
The lake at Elephant Butte holds a vast diversity of fish: white bass, walleye, crappie, largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, pike, carp, and catfish.
Frank's boat is 24-feet long, and can hold up to six people for a morning on the water.
Nate's morning started early, meeting and his fishing dog Anchor at 7 AM.
Frank's guide service provides rods and reels, live, and expertise on the waters of New Mexico.
As advertised, Frank knew exactly where the fish would be and was keen to offer pointers.
"Keep your eyes on the birds," says Vilorio of reading the water for catch. "They like to sit there, they got those long legs and they’ll take the bait as they come in.”
After three hours on the water, Nate's haul was 25 white bass. And after a quick dip in the lake, it was back to Frank's office where personally filleted the fish for future cooking.
It’s another day on the water for Frank, who’s living the ultimate dream after giving up the land life.
“I practiced medicine for three years, but then I left it all for this. This is what I wanted to do. I’m living the dream.”
A morning on Frank’s boat is reminiscent of a Hemingway novel, and the captain will guarantee you the memories to last.
“This is my medicine," says Frank of Elephant Butte. "This lake right here.”
Fishing is a perfect way to socially distance, and to schedule a tour with Frank visit his website.
To watch Nate's adventure-packed morning and his trials and tribulations on the water, watch the attached video to this story.