Yes, I know that it was Friday the 13th, but the water was calling, and Lamar saved me a spot on his boat.
0630 we met up at the boat launch (29.430453, -94.709914) and fought with the vampires while getting the boat ready to launch and the gear stowed. As the sun wasn’t up yet the mosquitoes had not gone to bed yet.
Custom 8wt rod throwing a variation of the “redfish crack.” I call the variation a “skinny crack,” as it is tied on a size 6 hook, and if very sparse. Plans are the the works to upload a video of the tying sequence soon.
Finally launched and left the vampires behind we had a short, less than a mile to the east, boat ride and we were in the marsh. There was some bait moving, but we didn’t see the fish that we were hoping to.
Lamar jumped up onto the poling platform and moved us deeper into the marsh as I took point on the casting deck. I blind cast for a while, getting my casting smoothed out, and fly placement in check, as we looked for redfish.
The water was falling fast and the water clarity suffered.
Movement ahead of us looked to be a nice red chasing some bait, so Lamar moved into position as I made a few casts at the spot we saw bait. No takers at that spot, but while we sat there talking about it, Lamar pointed out movement. A few casts into that location and “Fish on!”
A quick tussle and a nice slot redfish came to hand.
That is when I asked if I could pole the skiff for a while, with Lamar at the casting deck. I don’t have the practice or the skill that Lamar, and others, have, but I can move a boat, slowly. The entire time he was casting, we saw very little activity.
After almost 2 hours in this part of the marsh, it was time to move on to the next cove.
In a backwater pond there were some gar sunning themselves on the surface. I cast to them for a while with no success.
Blind casting into the middle of the canal led to a fish on the end of the line. I was excited, and ready to play it up for the camera, until I saw the fish… a hardhead!
OK, that was disappointing.
A short time later, another hookup. And another hardhead 😦
OK, enough of this. And we kept moving deeper into the marsh. A bit of bait was moving around so I placed the fly into the middle of it, and sure enough, there was a fish under it. A schoolie speckled trout had attacked my fly.
Moving a short distance away, another fish, this time a small flounder, decided that this fly looked tasty.
While anchored up next to shore, having lunch, we saw another gar slowly cruising the shoreline, coming straight to us. I flipped the fly in front of him. He turned, and ate it. I set the hook, and I had him connected, for about 2 seconds. All he did was turn his head and the tippet was cut clean. We watched for a few moments as he shook his head trying to get rid of the fly, before he swam out of view.
A short while later I had a couple of bumps on my fly, and my strip-set pulled the fly away from whatever wanted it. So back in it goes, only to have another schoolie speckled trout was hooked up.
By about 1300, the fish still weren’t in evidence, so we decided to call it a day.
Imagine our surprise when we opened the truck only have the vampires come flying out at us. They had been in there all day, just waiting.
We are already talking about “Next Time,” and “Sheephead.”