Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Shaky Hands


August 29, 2008

This story is about the 2nd annual Duxbury “One-Fly” Tournament.

I hate tournaments. The men milling about, grasping for testosterone-boosting tales to tell, trying to look professional, like they’ve been doing this longer than the other guy…and such. Then off to the water to kill every fucking fish they can find, including sharks. The shark tournaments are the worst. Hundreds of them get slaughtered, like fish, and thrown out with the trash because they weren’t big enough for the trophy. I assume the trophy fish also get thrown out in many cases.

But I need to admit, if that is the right word, that some tournament fishermen are true sports fishermen and don’t attempt to needlessly kill fish and sharks. I am not one of them because I really don’t like the traditional tournaments and what they do to both the image of fishing and the fish themselves, never mind the whole ecosystem. So I don’t participate, and really, I want to let you know that I am aware of how smug and pompous these two paragraphs make me out to be. They are smug and pompous, just the right subtitle that should be tacked under most fishing tournaments. So there.

Well, really what I wanted to write about mostly is the fun I had with my friends, and newly acquired friends, throughout the planning and implementation process associated with this one-fly fishing tournament. But let’s just get a couple things straight at the start. First, you’re allowed to use two flies, so I reckon we’ll need to vote on a new name for next year’s tournament. Also, the tournament’s prizes are worth less than the underpants you are wearing right now. Lastly, the tournament is designed such that if we were to hold one every day of the year, we would probably increase the striper population by driving most other fishermen out of the bay while hooking magnitudes fewer fish than Santa, thus saving the species from its impending collapse. Hmmn?

The tournament rules and regulations are too dull to ensure that you’ll keep reading this piece, so I’ve left them out. But basically it is all about getting the biggest striper on one fly pattern throughout the day….but you get two flies to work with, which is why it is called the one-fly tournament. We form teams of two and mix everyone up such that each boat has conflicting yet complimentary interests: you team with someone on another boat AND with who you’re fishing with (for the boat prize) and for yourself (to get that spiffy jacket that could be used for picking up chicks at the Winsor a couple hours after the annual beach party ends, unless the winner is a woman who then, of course, could pick up a wide variety of eager men at the Winsor at any of the 4:30 pm opening times).

But first there is the planning process, sometimes more fun than the actual event because geez, getting 47 emails each afternoon is truly an ego boost (until you read each one of them) and you get to vote on crazy stuff like how to officially measure the fish, what plaid designs should be considered for the coats, how many bottles of Mt. Gay Rum will be necessary, who the hell is going to provide the dinner fishes, and such. Right now you think I am being sarcastic, and I am, but with a smile because all this stuff is fun and we’ll keep doing it every year.

The tournament itself is also fun, if you like to fish under a radioactive scorching ball of reacting hydrogen. Yes, that’s right, we fish mostly throughout the midday on this one – gotta make things tough on ourselves. Last year it was on a Saturday which added several additional handicaps to the mix: fourteen-thousand Grady Whites, a few dozen jet-skis, and lots of sailboats. This year we did it on a Friday to make sure we’d avoid these distractions and compete only against the commercial striped bass fleet. And this we did.

I can’t report on anyone else’s tournament experience, just my own. Rob Fawcett and I fished hard and sober all day long. We hooked stripers and blues and eventually lost our two flies to end up throwing sluggos into a cool rip at the end of the day for an amazing array of keeper bass and blues. Just like last year. The flyfishing was fun until we witnessed J. Nash, within the first half-hour, land a 36 incher in one of our popular spots. A sight that immediately crinkled my manhood while boosting his. But we all had fun and by 3:45 I am betting that all entrants were thinking more about rum and tonics, oysters, and the cheese plate than getting cut off again by the exquisite bluefish. By 5:45 this was proven true by the parade of cars and trucks that descended upon the Nash barn (his wife and kids gagged and tied to chairs in the cellar) and quickly devoured the food and beverages like termites in a rotten stump.

We carried on throughout dinner which consisted of amazing stripers and tuna (mine sat unwanted in a lonely blue/white cooler in the driveway) and other fixings. We handed out the awards, munched on cookies, drank more drinks. Then the best part of the night drew upon us and one by one, the jokes (most of them embarrassingly dirty) bloomed to the point to where the final one told, the last joke of the night, curled the group up into quivering, spasmodic adolescents. It was a good one.

But seriously folks: the one-fly tournament was one of my summer’s highlights, even if it really isn’t full of blood and gore. It is full of guts and good times and I will remember each one for the rest of my days. I think that is the ultimate intention.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Dig, Joel, Dig!

August 21, 2008

*Photos provided by Capt. Jeff Smith. Permission pending. (www.finaddiction.com)


It had to be done. My brother-in-law, Chip, and I spent a morning off the Cape with Jeff Smith last summer and, of course, we hooked into some nice tuna on spinning gear. Our rewards, and stories, were shared with Joel, who by then had the bug to make it happen at the next chance. So earlier this year he pressed me for some dates (all mostly agreeable) and he pulled the trigger to hire Jeff out for another trip. This is the trip we took today.

Tuna fishing, as I’ve learned, is quite an art. There are many, or that majority, who rig themselves up to their necks in big boats, expensive trolling gear, and full bars. I’ve done all that. The style more appealing to me is to head out with spinning gear, find them, and cast to them. It is harder, for sure, and some people won’t want to put in that much effort. Good for them – keep trolling.

The story is this: last night we left a party being thrown at my own house to get at least part of the way to Truro, our point of departure. Joel and I arrived in Chatham and couldn’t resist a GnT at the Squire to at least look at the clientele, and this was done and it was pretty good. All kinds, and good GnTs (I highly recommend the bar at the Squire). Then to my mother-in-law’s house where we would depart for the Pamet in a few hours.

The morning was perfect. Only a bit of a breeze coming out of the north. Jeff met us at the dock and, after a slight delay, we made our way out through the rolls of the Race and into the more quiet waters of the Bank. This was a perfect morning; clear, but some seas and Jeff felt that this was better than smooth water. Plus it kept a few boats back in port.

We quickly rigged up and took position. There weren’t any fish surfacing in our area, but the birds and the location were what our guide felt would be the indicators. Joel was up in the bow with an unweighted Sluggo and I was in the stern with a weighted RonZ.

I want to report that it was my first cast that caught the first fish, but really my first cast was a practice one; I was trying to get a feel for the heavy braid that I had not used in about a year. But Jeff had indicated that he’d found them down around 50 feet and I asked him what he thought the count would be to get the RonZ down to them. Twenty to 25 seconds was the answer. So that next cast, the second one, was it. I counted perhaps to 15, cranked the reel about 3 times and felt a sudden, very strong strike followed by a run that screamed off about 200 m of the braided line.

It didn’t stop.

Fish on, I said. And soon Joel’s laughter and eager support was audible. My first fish of the day screamed as it removed a lot of line off the reel and this made me remember how long and painful it can be to land a tuna with attitude. Meanwhile Joel’s line began to sing and he was on his first (ever) bluefin tuna. This was a big event. I heard \a few howls of pleasure and excitement from the bow. Soon Joel and I were darting around the boat trying to keep our lines apart as both fish circled the boat in opposite directions. We managed to keep them free and clear of one another; we’d already have had much practice doubled up on fish. My fish was out a decent distance and I began to tire, but the fight wasn’t as long as I had thought it would be – perhaps 40 minutes. In the end it turned out that the fish had managed to tail wrap the line after shaking the hook free. It was only one wrap and hadn’t damaged the fish at all which made it an easy release. Meanwhile Joel’s fish held fast and slowly, after over an hour, Joel’s strength eroded to the point that he needed a little help. So, being rested and able, I quite reluctantly took the rod and powered the thing in. This fish was nice – measured out to 54 inches and was probably between 110 and 120 pounds. The photo session was politely brief, the fish bled, and into the box on ice.


OK, so we’re almost done with the story. Jeff continued to get us to some gooey areas where we just knew the fish would be (at least, Jeff needs to get the credit for sniffing out these spots). We hit a nice zone where Joel and I did manage to hookup again. What I insisted was a dogfish or small striper turned out, instead, to be a good sized tuna that must have been swimming toward the boat until it realized it was hooked. At that point the reel went spinning like a tornado and I had to goose-hop around the stern to keep the line from being cut under the boat. Ultimately the fish tailwrapped after about 20 minutes and released (quickly). Soon Joel was on another and he relived the first fish’s fight, though a little easier. This fish was landed, revived, and also released.

After these two fish we were physically tired and satiated. A large tuna was in the box, and we were on the way for some bluefish. Bluefish?!?! Yes indeed. See, some of us actually like the fight and the taste blues and the day was getting on. So we did this and it was fun. A few drifts along the Race, where just about every Cape tourist seemed to be, and we had our blues (with Jeff’s help).

The fish was dressed back in Wellfleet and we hurried to get back to Duxbury to have our celebratory pint or two at the Winsor House. The bartender’s mouth watered at our fishing stories so Joel ran out to the truck and soon returned with some sashimi slices for her. Might as well share the wealth.

Next up: The 2nd Annual One-Fly Tournament (and all those big fish we caught before it started)

Monday, August 25, 2008

Next Up: Joel Gets His Tuna (so do I)


I haven't had the time yet to gather my thoughts to write the next report. So keep checking in. I'll have the topwater tuna stories up in the next day or so. It was the nutz, in case you're wondering.

John

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

More Media

Here are some additional low quality pictures and video from Saturday's trip (see report below).


Ah yes, back at the ramp for all to see.



This swivel-less snap gave up the ghost the second that Joel landed the corker in the boat. He had opened the fish's mouth and an assemblage of metal junk, including the hook, just fell out. Lucky.



A case of moral relativism:

Happy - Joel
Unhappy - Fish




All that fishing made us a little hungry. Joel took a bite of this poor, unhappy bunker then tossed it in the water for yet another keeper.

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Some vid clips:


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Monday, August 18, 2008

All The Best Cowboys Have Chinese Eyes



Saturday, August 16, 2008

I don’t even know how to start this one. But here it goes, right to the point: Joel joined me on the water and landed his largest striper (or fish, for that matter) ever. Here’s how the story goes…

It had been a so-so summer for me and Joel in terms of fishing together. In previous years we would already have several days of wild fishing stories under our belts by mid-August. But this year was different. Partly due to our schedules and partly due to the marginal luck we had had so far. Early season outings were dampened by poor weather or mediocre tide conditions. Then there was that streak of bad luck due to having Dave Grossman on board to photograph us. Dave was worried that he’d become the banana in the boat, but that changed when finally I took him out to witness an orgy of keeper bass on the surface. Maybe Joel was the banana.

But anyway, a day finally surfaced free for both our schedules and I was happy about that. Joel and I have a blast fishing together. We tend to go all out and we often tend to do well. But most of all, it is fun to fish with Joel. I was telling him a few days ago that I was really looking forward to having a day on the water where we’d relive some of the best fishing times in the history of mankind. Seriously.

Five AM was the start at Mattakeesett and soon we were in the harbor, among a few other early risers, to snag a few pogies. I assumed Joel would be into getting right into some livelining – a fishing technique we rarely, if ever, attempted together. Usually we’re throwing specific topwater or swimming lures (many are custom designed by Joel) or we’re flyfishing. Baitfishing was something we both had ample experience doing, but not together. (We did do some awesome livelining in the Bahamas for barracuda, but that’s a story for the future archives, if I can write that). And really, we’re not purists in the sense of one fishing technique over the other. Basically, whatever is challenging and fun is the rule.

So in the harbor, in the low dingy light, we snagged about a dozen pogies (menhaden, aka bunker or “moss bunker”) and kept them alive in my baitwell (a black fish tote fed intermittently by 5-gal bucket). Then we cruised out to an area that I had only fished a few times with live pogies. The tide was dead low and the idea was to drift along the incoming in this area where large bass were known to hang out. On our way to set the drift we witnessed a guy hook into a large fish and our hopes shot up. I felt like we were definitely going to score some large fish this morning. And only ten minutes into our first drift we did get some action on the live pogies, but no hookups. After moving around a bit and getting nothing we decided to move on. I had other spots in my mental map and the tide conditions were now perfect.

I can’t use the name here, but we arrived at a named spot somewhere in the bay where I have had years of good fortune with big, and I mean big, bass. It was a regular spot for many people, at least the area around it attracted boats. Typically I would refrain from fishing there if others were around. So we did a few drifts there, along with another boat who seemed happy to be hooking up. My manners got in the way, however. I wouldn’t get into the honey hole while the other guy was there. This would be fine, usually, but this time I got a little pissed off because the other boat (a Grady cabin) decided to motor itself steady into the rip which posed a dilemma to those of us who don’t want to fuck things up for the other guy. Akin to anchoring, this guy kept his motor steady through the rip and most likely scared off lots of fish, and kept me away.

So off to another site we went, keeping the pogies alive with constant replenishments of water with the 5-gal. The next site was poor…full of mung and looking bare. Ugh. I really wanted this trip to be productive and Joel did too. We discussed the possibilities – just an hour into the flood, which is a tricky moment on the bay because the fish are in (or out) of new and interesting areas. So we just kept our focus on the rips. I decided on a specific place to set up for a while and it wasn’t too far off. An amazing sunrise with the prospect of some low clouds, mist, and rain which would be good to keep the fish up and the idiots away. We did see some idiots, by the way. Upon setting up on some nice drifts we were fairly frequently accosted by folks who figured that if they simply find a boat fishing then that is where the fucking fish are and just simply plop right up next to us, after a few hesitant 360s (because they don’t know what they’re doing) , and watch, and fish with the wrong tackle. But I won’t get started on all that.

Basically Joel and I ran this rip alone for quite some time and this is how it went:

Joel, with live pogie, got his bait hassled by big fish, then…caplumpt! Line went out and we were in business. It was a pretty long fight, I had no net, just Joel’s homemade bamboo short gaff. Joel brought the big fish up to the boat and so I gaffed the thing (nice and clean like) and it came up on board. Woah…wow…a nice one. We both literally couldn’t speak, talk, or really communicate because the laughing, rather – wheezing – was too thick to cut through. It taped out to 40 ½ inches and was just beautiful. “Wow, holy fucknuts daddio,” said Joel. “This is the first fish I’ve taken on live pogies!” Indeed, a beauty and it was, as Joel has exclaimed in previous situations, the fucknuts.

Joel’s next fish was a screamer. Took lots of line out and after some good fighting, the line parted and that was that. Joel figured it was a knot he left in the braided line that cut through itself (later we figured otherwise). And he was pretty pissed. He was almost as pissed as I was, having not had a good hookup yet. But I didn’t mind. This morning was one of those one-sided situations where one guy gets all the luck. That’s the way it goes.

So, to continue describing his amazing streak of fortune, Joel’s next fish was landed (due to my agile gaffing techniques) within 10 minutes of the previous breakoff. This one was also nice – 37”. He was on a roll.

So we ran up to the next drift and set up ourselves. Joel asked me about the dead pogies, whether to save them for the lobster pots or whatever. I said, “We should probably throw a chunk out there as we liveline and cast. “Sure thing, dadio.”

But what Joel ended up doing was totally intuitive and I understood exactly what he was up to. He began to filet a pogie. That’s right, filet a pogie. He only did one side, then removed as much of the bones as possible from the remaining one-sided frame. This rendered the poor thing as a floppy, bleeding lure which Joel tossed over into the deep eelgrass. And then in about 3 minutes the line was screaming and I reached for the bamboo gaff, as if I were a conditioned chimp.

This thing took so much line off of Joel’s reel that I actually asked if things were OK up there on the bow. “Daddio, I think you might want to motor up on this one a little bit.” Hmmn. So I did, then again, then again…we didn’t cover much ground, but allowed Joel to at least get 20 m of line in. Still lots to go. So in the end, the fish finally succumbed and showed itself to us. It was of an amazing size and I readied the gaff and after a few clumsy attempts, hooked the gill and brought him aboard.

Holy Fucknuts. This fish was absolutely huge. Upon its landing Joel and I just dropped everything and wheezed for a good five minutes…seriously, we couldn’t hold it in and had to simply laugh to exhaustion. This was to turn out to be Joel’s largest landing: a striper that measured out to 48.5 inches and weighed 41 lbs. Yar, indeed.

We went in and ate an early lunch with our morning coffee. Everything was out of synch, so after some tackle work we ended up out on the water again. This time on the dropping tide, Joel managed another 31 incher, as did I but on a sluggo. Then we moved to some active rips and went crazy with somersaulting stripers that averaged the mid-20s in length and this was really fun. We stayed out until a squall started throwing bolts our way and then made our way in.

Back in the driveway Alex M. and Jon N. showed up to share beer and fish and stories, and this made a great end of the day. Rain, lightning, and thunder accompanied our short happy hour. The day ended and I was onto the next world of dinner parties and family activities, leaving the moments of Joel’s amazing day in my memory.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Time for Dinner



Tuesday, August 5

With the weight of yesterday’s so-so afternoon of fishing with Ben and Kelly on my shoulders, and a major appetite for some fish for dinner, I departed with keen instincts matched to catch and not to release (legally of course). I meant business this time.

The afternoon started with a bang. I found a couple of schools of menhaden and easily snagged enough for the trip and kept them going in my makeshift livewell. Then off to my favorite big fish rip. The plan was simple: liveline a menhaden off of one end of the boat and strategically cast surface lures off the other. It worked. Within a few minutes I had a striper on the liveline, but also one on the other line. A dilemma. The livelined bass seemed to be okay as I quickly unhooked a 25” striper off my Sluggo and didn’t appear to be going anywhere fast. But then when I finally got around to applying pressure on that line he woke up and screamed the line off the reel through the strong currents. It was a beautiful scene with eelgrass below and broken sunlight nearing sunset. The fish fought for some time and I had to be careful not to cause a commotion as the drift brought me closer to the other boats that had unintentionally, and mistakenly, lined up to fish on the wrong side. He was brought in, and although I didn’t need to measure him I did and he was 32” and quite healthy. The last third of the menhaden was hanging out of his mouth for a few moments which brought on a short-lived feeling of guilt for the situations of both of these fine fish. But they’re fish, not humans. And after all, I was just as hungry as that bass.

The second keeper came on the next drift on one of Joel’s double-rigged white Sluggos. This one was smaller but respectable (29”). I bled them both under the stern using a length of black nylon line with a leash clip on one end that Jon Nash gave me last month. And then they were in the boat and I was off to my next couple of spots as the area was getting crowded and I didn’t want to give the right spot(s) away.

The evening continued on the upside. Another dozen or so fish in the mid/upper 20s. They were very active and engaged both Sluggo and homemade poppers. Then the phone rang to remind me of my promise to be home at a certain time and that was it.

The photos here are pretty awful in terms of quality and I apologize for that. They were taken with my all-weather/condition cell phone which has been in the saltwater and mud for a few months now. I’ll replace my old camera soon....It costs about as much as a guided trip out to the rips with me.

Welcome Back

Monday, August 4 This story is going to be unfairly short because I am short on time tonight. Ben and Kelly are my old friends from several years ago. They just returned from 2 ½ years in the Peace Corps in Honduras and they were swinging by for a couple days. Ben and I worked together in Boston and Cambridge in our former lives as environmental science consultants. Kelly also worked for the company out in Chicago. And somehow they met and got married and joined the Peace Corps. I was already married at the time but rather than do something as noble as moving to Honduras to build public drinking water systems, I continued on with consulting until I grew corns on my ass and ears and had to bail.

Today we started out planting hard clam seed on my farm and showed Ben and Kelly the whole oyster routine. After lunch (which was really breakfast) we decided to fish. Ben and I fished many times in the past while working in Boston. We used to head up to Emerson Rocks on Plum Island, the Cape, and even the Bahamas (all these trips usually included Joel M.). Ben hadn’t fished in 2 ½ years so we had to do something about that.

We started out down the bay and when I noticed some menhaden schooled up in front of us I decided to snag a few in case we’d live line. It was midday, sunny, and high tide; poor conditions for fishing. Live lining might be the best bet for Ben to hook into a larger bass. But he was first happy to hook into a live pogie which, at first, he thought was a clump of weeds. Yay, a pogie! First fish in ages. No teeth with gaping wound in its side. I’m kidding around, naturally.

We set up the pogie at a couple of rips and Ben was into this. He had several hits but the fish weren’t big enough to swallow the thing. Kelly and I casted out Sluggos and soon we had some explosions but no hookups. Ben also threw out Sluggos and had several follows and hits, but they all missed the hooks. Eventually I landed one at about 22” and that got the skunk off of the boat. The live lining continued to get our hopes up, but nothing too big was around this afternoon.

Then a squall came in and it rained. We were getting a little damp and cold when suddenly Kelly said, “Oh no, I am snagged on something.” I thought it was the lobster pot right next to the boat and I got ready to start the engine to get over to the buoy. She pulled and swatted the rod around like anyone would to release a tangle. But then we saw the flash: she had a fish on, momentarily, and she managed to untangle her Sluggo from the fish’s mouth! This was funny and we all bent over to laugh it out.

But a couple more drifts didn’t amount to much and the area started to get crowded with idiots. So we went in. Ben and Kelly had dinner plans in Boston and had to get moving. More will be written, perhaps not on this specific trip (there’s not much more to tell). But of other stories.
video

Friday, August 1, 2008

The Bank

I ventured out with my friend Brian on his zippin' boat last Saturday. We were heading out for some bluefin. I was tired. I mean really tired and out of it. I met Brian, as planned, at 4:30 down on the dock. We geared up and off we went to catch some live bait, then across Cape Cod Bay to the banks.

But I was out of it.

We did manage to get some menhaden into the livewell with only a couple of jarring moments (one confrontation with a sore fellow fisherman). The bay, however, was calm and balmy. It was going to be a great day, I thought to myself.

We managed to get across to our destination in record time, maybe a half hour. Brian's boat is pretty slick. It moves and it slices and it is truly an amazing boat to fish from. I should get one like his.

On the bank we encountered at least 30 other boats with the same idea that we had. We were both hoping for surface action and had our eyes peeled well. This didn't occur at all, nor did the trolling of live bait do much except for a very nice offshore striper which had to be returned alive (due to federal rules). So no tuna today.

But ah, the whales were just amazing. There were so many humpbacks out there and they were putting on the show. Sand eels were everywhere and the whales were feeding verociously. In between feedings they waved to us and hung out on the surface presumably to socialize with one another. Real cool stuff.

So, when you head out for the footballs and skunk you really don't skunk. This is because almost every trip out to the bank produces a meaningful, fulfilling experience. I was tired and out of it, but inside I was alive and into it.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Blues

I finished up some work on the farm yesterday and decided to try to get some small blues for dinner. It worked. They were in the same little spot where they've shown up for years now. A little yo-zuri swimmer at high speed retrieve brought a couple to the boat in a couple of minutes. A rush home to get them cooked up for the kids. A grand success.

Jonah crabs also have been keeping us happy this week. Thanks Steve.

A couple of days ago I hooked into some midday bass in a rip. They were good on the white sluggo. My attempt to liveline a bunker ended up with mixed results. A bunch of hits at one spot, then a definite hookup at another spot but it threw the hook after ten seconds. Fun.

More soon.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

The Lapses

It is not like I am not fishing, I am simply not fishing as much and focusing on oysters, reading, writing, and various aspects of private business (like being a scientist and figuring out ways to make more money...like flipping mud for clams and such).

The fish are around now. And so are the people. July 4th weekend, or week, made the bay rough with wakes and traffic. I chose not to even think about fishing and instead focused on shellfish. My scallops are coming along nicely and the baby oysters are cruising and things are going as planned. My farming partner, Alex, and I are working hard to establish the 2008 seed as our best yet. And everything seems great.

But the fishing is beginning to burn a hole in me. Joel and I just got off the phone and it seems that if we don't get some things in the works soon we may lose opportunity. Obviously, I can fish at will here on the coast and I have to try to make myself get up and face the crowds here and there.

I think that we're at the turning point in the summer: things are about to pick up.

All for now.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Solo Day

Today I was able to hit the SE gusts alone on my skiff. The tides were right.

I had an amazing time with the fish. Unfortunately they were all this fall's keeper class (26/27), but then again, shouldn't eat striper every day. The great thing was that they were ballistic bass and actually challenging to hook. Many strikes, but the wind and waves made it more difficult for them to grab the hook. This was fine because I enjoy seeing them getting charged up and striking, perhaps even more than landing them.

Again, an amazing afternoon out there along the rips. Enjoyed seeing Papa Neal and his crew doing well too.

No pics -- time to replace my camera or kidnap Dave Grossman every time I leave the harbor.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

A Good Shoot

Monday, June 16, 2008

“Dave, this is John. ..yeah, hi, do you want to head out this afternoon and hit the tide with me? I think there will be some fish out there today.”

“Sure, see you down there.”

This is how our third attempt to photograph good striper fishing began on Monday. I wasn’t really sure that they’d be there, but I was pretty sure. The wind was up though, and it made things bumpy and wet. I don’t mind bumpy and wet.

So off we went and I made sure to have plenty of fishing gear ready because with every trip, Dave wanted to fish more than shoot. And this he did – for a little while.

Our first stop – nothing. Second stop – nothing again. Third stop – zilch. “Um, John, I am not sure this system is working – me heading out with you to catch fish. Uh, either you can’t catch fish or I am bad luck,” explained Dave. “Maybe both,” I answered. But no, this couldn’t be true. We were just having bad luck – well, continuous bad luck, like the Red Sox had for a while.

Then today things changed. The fourth spot I had been saving, kind of like saving Ortiz for cleanup. We arrived to find another boat circling through the drift. I was sure that these guys would be spooking the fish because they were coming up through the rip, on motor, and casting along the way. I had fished this specific spot hundreds of days and knew that running the boat up through the rip rather than quietly heading around the outside to the top was a fatal error. It just doesn’t work out; the fish see and/or hear the outboard and spook. They’ll go down for ten minutes.

So Dave and I did two drifts through this spot and ended up with nothing at all. Nothing means nothing – no follows, nothing. And this surprised me because it was the perfect tide and it was overcast. I suspected the other boat was simply running over the rip too much.

But I had an ace in my pocket. There is another spot not far off that I can really call my own…except on weekends. This is a little line of fast water that holds massive fish for only one hour per tide. Within that interval the fish are numerous and hungry. But it turns off quickly. We were in that interval and had a chance. So I looked over to Dave, who looked worried and diminished, and said (for the hundredth time) “I have another spot…they’re sure to be there.”

Two minutes later I had a fish in the cooler. Well, no cooler, but rather the horrendous muddy slop on the floor of my skiff. Dave shot as I continually hooked and landed some nice stripers. Then he put the cameras away and threw out his line a few times. The action continued for several drifts through the rips and we began to get excited for the first time out on the water together.

We stayed for a while and did well…two keepers and several fat undersized bass released. Then I noticed that the previous spot (the one with the other guys motoring through) was clear and open. Soon I spotted fish busting all through the rip. We promptly moved back there and the first cast produced a 31 who gave me a washing. Nice. Then every cast through that drift resulted in amazing blitzes and acrobatics. One fish pulled so hard to explode my line down at the reel. Dave hooked a couple there between shoots and seemed happy. “That’s more like it,” he said.

We played out the rips until they faded to the slacking tide. It was also getting late and we all had work to do. I had to clean some fish and Dave had to get back to his office. He stopped over to the house to pick up a couple of filets and then I drove some fish over to my cousin’s house, and to the neighbors. We also ate one that night with mango-lime salsa (see Chris Schlessinger’s Thrill of the Grill and other cookbooks).

That’s more like it.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

F Nuts


Sunday, June 15, 2008

Tides are so important. When Joel and I decided it would be a good idea for him to come down to Duxbury on Sunday afternoon we didn’t realize how the schedule would throw us off from good fishing. At least that is how I see things in hindsight. He and his son, Trevor, arrived around 3:00 and we spent a couple hours working in the driveway on tackle, taking some garbage to our town’s illustrious dump, listening to outrageous music, and tending to the kids (other half was busy until later). But finally we departed for the rips on the bay.

It was one of those silvery days where the water looked like the clouds and little bits of rain would come down here and there. The calm water was quite welcoming and we felt that the fish would be everywhere. However, as we motored out I the thing I worried about was the tide; I felt that we might have just missed the best part of it and we’d be waiting some time to see much. But why complain and worry, out on the boat with Joel was one of life’s pleasures and we had stories and jokes going at a good clip.

First we had to snag a few pogies. This turned out to be easy and we soon filled the live well with a half dozen big menhaden (moss bunker). This alone was a good start and got Joel humming with enthusiasm. His grin almost touched the margins of his curious, salty red hair which bushed out from beneath his tidy Grady White hat (I’ll need to ask him about that hat – wouldn’t see me dead under that thing, but I shouldn’t tempt fate I suppose) and stretched his bristling soul-patch to its physical limits. So, enough of snagging bunker – soon we were off to let them go, with treble hooks caringly shoved nicely through their eye-sockets and up through their heads, into the various rips that I felt would be full of hungry stripers. As these poor pogies swam for their lives, wondering what the fuck was going on, Joel and I tossed his specially rigged sluggos into the glassy gray rips. As soon as the live bait were, as Joel said, “being hassled,” the sluggos began to elicit nice white water and soon after, nice bass which screamed the reels and put Joel into defcon 5.

“Holy fucknuts dudicus! Did you see that?!?” screamed Joel. A striper was on his sluggo about ten feet from the boat and it was nuts, perhaps even fucknuts. The tail, half out into the air, was furiously pushing whitewater vertically and horizontally (at all angles) and this had Joel screaming “Daddio.” At the same time I was getting the same kind of response to my sluggo, but I am the writer of the story so I’ll focus the attention on my friend instead. But even more importantly, at the same time the pogies, being hassled, both started to jump and peel some line away. Each had several bass nipping, slurping, and bumping, but not able to actually swallow the baitfish. And this, I think, can be metaphorically compared to either drunk sex or true animal cruelty. I am on the fence with this one. But rather than worry too much about an overgrown baitfish, let’s think about the fishing experience.

Joel and I were able to land several nice stripers – heavy, but short. One, which Joel had half into the cooler ended up taping to 27 and he reluctantly tossed her back. Most others were close, but the larger fish just weren’t around. We move once and found some nice action on the incoming tide with several additional washing machine experiences (the fish’s head is down, tail up…back and forth with spray). Then it began to darken and we had kids at home to entertain and get to bed. Actually, Joel had to drive an hour back home and we also needed to fit in a post-fishing refreshment.

But first, my lobster pots and they provided a couple of nice ones. We baited them with our leftover pogies and also grabbed some sand crabs for Joel to take with him along with the lobsters.

At home we were welcomed by my sister-in-law and niece who had just arrived from California. We had some wine, told some stories, Joel and Trev left, and it was time for bed.

If we had begun fishing two hours earlier, when the tide was right, we would have been grilling bass and serving it with mango lime salsa. I am sure of it.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Every Cast

Friday, June 6, 2008

I just couldn’t resist the tides this week. I left the mooring at 2:30 and cruised out to spot #1. As I approached I noticed another boat there (was that guy anchored in the rip?). Typically I would avoid doubling up on someone and would go elsewhere. But today I had this destination in mind and I didn’t really care if someone else was there first. I arrived and lined myself up for the drift. The other guy, who was in an old boat (with windshield), wasn’t too happy with me. His cigarette hung loosely from his long face. I waved over to him, he waved back, and then I thought I saw some sign of lightening up on his end.

My first cast provided a 31 inch bass. I knew it was going to be a good afternoon. I continued on with a couple more drifts, hooking a few more fish between 27 and 32 inches on some of Joel’s double-rigged Sluggos. The other guy seemed to be doing well too and we got into a good drifting pattern, staying out of each other’s way. This was until the jackass in the oversized, decal-covered sports boat decided to troll umbrella rigs right up through the middle of the rip. This screwed everything up. The faces of the passengers all aimed at me and Mr. Longface, attempted to catch signals of fishing success at this spot. I decided to move on to avoid attracting them to the area. Mr. Longface did the same and we were both gone within a minute. He went west and I went south.

My next spot was also on fire. Every cast produced amazing action. The drift was quick and this allowed for only one hookup before having to move the boat out and around to an upstream location. One or two casts was about all there would be time for. I landed dozens of fish here. Since I already had a fish on the boat I decided to release all the additional big ones, which were plentiful. I cycled through all patterns of Sluggo: white, black, pink, and “squid-colored”. They all worked, but the white ones did best. After some time the rip began to fade and the big fish moved on. I returned to spot #1 and found Mr. Longface there too. We waved again, lined up in an efficient drift pattern, and began landing fish. A waft of his cigarette smoke briefly brought memories of fishing with my dad way back when. Then he left and soon after I packed it in and returned to shore. On the way in I figured that the afternoon was about a 95% hookup rate. I wish I had brought along my fly rod. Next time.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Change in the Weather


Mon/Tues, June 3rd and 4th

Note: I am in a rush. Abbreviated version:

It is Monday, June 3rd. My 23 year-old nephew is due to arrive in town in the early afternoon. I am delayed getting out on the water but that’s OK because there are a few places I know that might hold a fish or two and having one for dinner would make Pete (my nephew) happy.

The weather is quite fair and calm. I decide to move quickly and get outside the bay for some mackerel. I am thinking that if I can land even a few of these, get back into the bay on the outgoing, I’d hit some big fish for sure. But it doesn’t pan out this way. Lots of guys out there jigging for macs but none to be found. It is calm after the NE wind dies. Then the SE wind takes over and I decide to bolt after 1.5 hours of wrist exercises.

Inside the bay it is still somewhat calm. A few boats line the Saquish rips and a few birds are popping down into the water. But I don’t produce anything there. I decide to head elsewhere.

The next rip is just forming as the tide brings the water down to the point were standing waves begin to form. First drift through: a 23 inch striper. This is hooked on a Yo-Zuri swimming mackerel (front hook removed). Next drift: total explosion – a 29 incher gobbles down a double hooked Meunier Sluggo. Excellent fighting fish that I draw into the net which is now handy on board. Next drift – big explosion on the surface Sluggo and a 34 incher is kept. I need a bigger net.

Subsequent drifts: three additional keeper stripers and a couple of mid 20s are landed.

The phone rings. It is my nephew Pete. He’s driving down Harrison St. Time to speed in. We meet at the dock and quickly head back out to harvest a few oysters, work on cleaning some bay scallop boxes, then retrieve some additional bagged oysters. Alex M. meets us at the ramp. We unload, hook the boat, wipe our hands, then ease on over to the Winsor House for some refreshments. After some time Pete and I head back to our house to grill some striper (with modified pear lime salsa), discuss life, then we head to Plymouth to see what that is all about; and discuss life further. We watch and listen to odd cover duos play 90s mullet rock at one venue and breath in Marlboro smoke from the young women who stare at their men’s tattoos. Throughout these distractions we attempt to catch up after years of not really seeing each other much. He’s an adult now – and I work on learning to adjust to this, to treat him with the even level of respect he deserves. I wish he’d been an hour earlier to town – he’d have seen a good shit show of big fish.

--

Time moves forward to June 4th. Pete leaves for CT. I work on some science experiment stuff with colleagues in the AM, then out to the water. Too deep to drag up oysters very effectively so I head in for some water (dehydrated from my night out) and head back out to some of my favorite rips to fish.

First cast – a huge one. Biggest of the season so far. It peels out meters of line, I then make some progress on it, but then it loses the hook and swims freely away. This one was in the upper 30s for sure. Several more drifts and a few follows and swipes, but nothing worth mentioning.

To the next rip. First drift – nothing. Feeling frustrated I run the boat back around for another drift. First cast of the Meunier Special Sluggo along the margin of the rip results in a massive explosion and a hard fight. The fish is landed and my excitement is way up. On the next drift I am about to cast but first notice a quick eruption of fish in the rip, with one very large fish speeding through the breaking water at an extreme speed. I cast there and find seven or eight big stripers chasing my Meunier Special through the waves. Finally a big one lurches forth, its mouth wide open, and “Gschlurp” – fish on. This one goes deep and stays there for about five minutes. Finally landed in my net (need a bigger net).

Then about three more 30 inchers and a few smaller fish are taken (and released) at this rip and the former one.

Then I am back to work on oyster for a couple hours and then finally home. Frank T. notices me cleaning the fish in my yard, walks over and seems interested. I bring him a fillet and he offers me a glass of wine which I willingly drink. He and his friend Tad share fishing stories as he dresses the fish for the grill. I eventually leave and head home.

A nice couple of days.

Gut contents:

Monday's - 7 inch squid. Lots of them.
Tuesday's - A whole herring or pogie (see gruesome photo) and some green crabs.

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Everyone Knows It's Windy


Week of May 25th

I am pretty busy right now. The oyster business is in full swing and preparations for this year’s seed (young oysters) require daily attention. I have found opportunities to fish, but the weather has been poor during these times.

I went out three or four times this past week – some of these being very brief searches prior to working on the shellfish grant. On two occasions I had Joel Meunier and Dave Grossman along. If you read any of these reports you’ll know Joel. Dave is new to the Saquish Journal scene but not to Duxbury’s waterfront. His spectacular photography (he’s a photographer) is ubiquitous in town and rapidly growing (www.gurnetroad.com). Dave came aboard to shoot some fishing action for a change as he has now taken about six billion shots of gruff oyster guys and photogenic bivalves. I was quite excited to have some documentation of some of the fishing that Joel and I do out there; more times than not we score big on the bay. We took two trips over the course of about a week.


Day 1: The weather was not good for fishing and the fish weren’t really around. But Joel’s first cast into a school along the channel produced his first striper of the season (photo above). The flyrod was used for about five minutes before the winds suddenly picked up in front of a large squall that seemed to be threatening along the northwest. A few drifts along some favorite rips produced a few fish, no real size to them, but fun. After running into Skip behind the island we poked around the bay for another half hour before retiring the boat for the evening. That squall line did skirt by us, over Marshfield perhaps. It was amazing scenery: black, mottled low clouds rapidly sliced the brilliant blue sky in half. The sun beamed against the Powderpoint Bridge and, lastly, small rainbows appeared as the line moved east. All this kept Dave busy with his cameras.

Day 2: West wind at 20 knots. Kept along the western shore for a bit, but decided to move behind the island and then brave Saquish Flats. Found a large, tight school of menhaden – one attempt to net some with Joel’s cast net. Nil. One fish landed out along Saquish (by Joel) and another one lost. The menacing wind finally dropped a bit at sunset, but our thirst for the Winsor House ruled and there we went to plan future events. Lobster pots went in.

So there you have it. It was somewhat of an uneventful week on the water for me. My friends in town have all been reporting excellent fishing offshore using live mackerel to land big, fat bass. Others who have opted to fish inside have had similar reports to mine – wind and tides not in our favor. The spring tides next week should bring change.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Patience Pays Off


5/22/08

Tom’s boat is much nicer and better than mine, but he still wanted to hop onto the mud barge and do some early season striper fishing with me. Along with Tom was Martin, his friend and business associate. We met at the dock just a hair later than originally planned but still early enough to hit the first bite. The weather was a mixed bag: a bit breezy out of the SW which carried periodic squalls that would soak us over five minute intervals. But this was nothing to complain about.

The tide was just more than half out so our first series of stops were some rips that were often good bets for large fish. At the first one we immediately witnessed a brief, but awesome blitz of stripers. These fish were coming clear out of the water and this warmed Martin’s cockles quite a bit. The fly rods were out as we took several drifts through the rip. But nothing materialized. The frustration was augmented by the sight of anglers on another boat who were pulling up fish on each drift with spinning gear. It was decided that a few casts on spinning gear would be necessary to break the curse. Martin obliged and soon hooked a nice one on a rubber shad. Our enthusiasm was rekindled.

But this was short-lived because the action suddenly dropped to nil and the weather began to deteriorate. We moved about the bay, drifting over several flats, seeing a fish here and there, but no luck on the flies. Tom and Martin did get lots of casting practice (which likely staved off hypothermia) and several stories were told over the course of perhaps an hour and a half. Martin, originally from Wales, shared tales of fishing trout and salmon in Wales and in other parts of the world. This was his first outing in Duxbury and I really wanted him to experience one of the typical good spring blitz days here. Telling him of how good the fishing here usually is does no good. I had to shut up and find them.

The tide eventually slacked and I knew that there would be a brief break between bites so we killed a little time by exploring some areas of the bay that Tom had not been to yet.

Then the tide began its flood and at the same moment the wind died and the sun began to break through. It felt very fishy. After a few attempts along the margin of a vast eelgrass flat and deep channel (where terns were voraciously feeding on small baits) I felt the urge to move towards the island. This we did and this was fortunate because I soon spotted a cloud of birds working hard in the distance. As we got closer is became obvious that fish were there. Smiles returned and Martin, who was aching to bend his fly rod, immediately bubbled up into a foam of excitement. We found them.

The flies were flung and on almost every cast a fish was attached to the retrieve. Tom decided to try a small white popper and was rewarded with multiple surface hits. Like the weather, the school of stripers was a mixed bag. Their sized ranged from 10 to 24 inches. Tom landed a (the) 24 incher on a small silverside fly but rather than attempt to compete for the largest fish, the men decided that the smallest measured fish would be a more appropriate prize to attain. Tom won this category at 10.5 inches among many chuckles. But overall the fish averaged in the low 20s and were good sized for fly fishing. The guys had to get in a bit early. So after about an hour of action we ran back to the harbor, stopping to cast a couple of times along notorious holds without luck.

Over the course of the morning I was a bit concerned that the trip would be a dud until that surface school was found. However, you know things are going well when one guy says to the other: “I don’t know how many fish I’ve landed – I’ve lost count!”

So there you have it. I’m expecting better things with this change in the weather over the weekend. Watch out for fast-moving Grady’s out there.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

In The Rain

Friday, May 16

On Friday afternoon I took a quick spin around the bay. It was raining - lightly at first, then it picked up. Found a few schools of surface action. I fished them with some home made plugs (Meuniers) and it was fun. The rain kept most others away. But this morning it was nice and the action, from what I heard, was incredible. Don M. sent me the photo (below) along with a glowing report of hooking numerous fish before his workday began.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Nothing Like a Nooner



Thursday, May 15

I decided to go fishing for an hour or so. Also, I felt like trying out one of my new crab traps (to collect green crabs – a different story). My urge to fish was natural, but it was accentuated by Don M.’s email this morning which informed me that he landed one mackerel. No bass, but mackerel were around. I too went out early, on my way to work, to scope out the striper scene and found zilch.

So, at noon or so I went back out on the water to see what was what. I brought some Sabiki jigs for the mackerel but also my usual arsenal of striper stuff. First I dropped of the crab trap, baited with a small flounder rack from last winter. Then off to mackerel grounds. But I couldn’t just leave the bay without at least checking the usual spots for busting fish. And upon doing this my mackerel plans abruptly changed; I found a tight, persistent school of busting fish with birds galore in a narrow rip.

I tried a series of lures. Nothing big worked. So on went the little yellow job that hooked last Friday’s fish. These bass were rolling and slurping, but also smacking their tails hard on the surface. These were indicators that they would be difficult to hook. But after about ten casts I had a strike. It was only a split second after setting the hook that the rod summarily bent hard and the reel starting screaming like a frightened little girl. Holy crap, I thought. It couldn’t be. … but alas, my reel continued to lose line (old gnarly line that I had just then realized should have been changed before today) and my nerves were up. I fought the fish for about three minutes before it came up close enough to view. A keeper, I said quietly. Then realizing how lame the line was, and how the hook was barbless, I glanced around for a net. No net of course. I grabbed a six-foot crook used for grabbing oyster bags (a G-rated gaff) and then realized how ridiculous I was being. I tired the fish out for a spell, then decided to tail him if possible. The first attempt failed – too slippery. Then on the second attempt I held firm and eased him into the boat.

But having not seen a keeper fish for some months, I decided I’d better measure him out. But no tape or markings around that would indicate legal vs. sublegal status. I did have an oyster gauge which is a 3-inch ring. I measured out 3-inch increments along my six-foot crook and finally marked off 28 inches (I estimated the final inch…being that 3 doesn’t go into 28 as a whole number). And the fish was beyond this mark and then I was even happier and then didn’t really know what to do with myself. I decided to fish some more.

The school hung tight in the rip and I made several passes. I landed another six or seven stripers. One of these was about 7.5 inches long, others up to 22 inches or so. It was good fun indeed. One fish I caught (see photo) had unmistakable bight marks along its upper gut area and also down lower. Something had chomped this guy up pretty badly yet he was still feisty and hit my artificial. The wounds were quite fresh and there were sea lice attached to them.

After a bit I decided not to hit the mackerel grounds after all. I’ll save that for Don Gunster and Joel Meunier in the next few days. I spun back to the harbor and grabbed my crab trap along the way: one green crab. It works.

At home the fish measured out to 31 inches.

Not a bad nooner.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Drag Racing


After yesterday's rushed schedule and crappy weather I felt more of an urge to make up for lost time seeking stripers. So before catching the tide at the oyster farm I decided to scout about for a half hour. The conditions were calm, a north wind just beginning to show, and I cruised out of the harbor with the draining tide. But not too far. Within a minute or two I found myself within about two acres of busting fish. I reached for my rod (a clunker that I've been keeping on the boat as a backup) and began throwing things at the fish. First a storm shad, then a Fin-S, then a popper, then a little leadhead with a yellow squiggleworm on it. Two strikes (on the shad and the little yellow job) and lots of weed. The fish seemed to be after small baits which were never visible to me. Throughout my early season spasms (tripping on anchor, tying poor knots, yelling swear words at fouled up lures) I began to notice that my old clunker line was getting tired and kinky. Hmmmn. Twice I bird nested and twice I swore that I would take five minutes to straighten out the spool. But with busting fish all around I took the short cut and paid for it with some additional knotting.

Then I ran out of time. I had to get to work on the grant.

I rushed through my tasks and was surprised to have them done prior to the full draining of the tide. If I had been a few minutes later it would have been hard to get the boat back into deeper water and I'd be stranded for an hour and a half. So back out I went. I ran out to the mid bay where I found a school up top. But after three casts they went under and never came back. Then over to Clark's Island where there were fish lined up along one of its coasts. Still lots of weed. Casting away with all kinds of lures I began to notice something else (besides the line knotting up....and the curse words, etc.). My reel, a Shimano baitrunner, starting this annoying clicking noise. You know, the noise a reel makes before it totally shits the bed. Hmmmn. Maybe it will fix itself - my little voice said to ease my nerves. But within a couple of casts (that did not yield anything) the clicking evolved into crunching and the reel began to reject my efforts to retrieve the line. Then I could sense little bits of parts banging around inside the casing. Crap.

I called it quits and decided to head in. A NE storm was on the way, sprinkles had begun, and I needed to get the boat out of the water or moored somewhere safe for a day or two.

But then, as I ran back toward the harbor, I glanced back into Captain's Flats and saw the shit show that the bass were throwing there. Birds were balled up and diving aggressively. I reckoned I had a few casts left in the baitrunner so I turned the boat into the shallow flats and made my way to the fish. When I arrived the fish were broken into three or four schools and the terns took turns moving among all of them. I put the little yellow squiggle job on the line - a tradeoff because although I felt it would attract a hit, it was light and would only cast about 25 feet. But on my second or third cast from my rapidly deteriorating reel, a hard strike and a fish on. Yay. It fought well, but especially well because the drag on the reel had completely died. So I palmed the spool and eventually got the fish in. I felt ridiculous.

I raised the fish up, kissed its forehead, attempted to take a picture or two with my cell phone camera, and tossed it back. It was small, maybe 20 inches, but the best looking fish I've seen all year.

Back out when the wind sets down. I'll be certain to bring an array of better rigs, including some fly tackle. As far as the reel goes - interment will be private, but there will be a memorial service on Tuesday, May 13. I request that cash be sent to my house in lieu of flowers.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Something's there


Today the water was absolutely magnificent. The terns and gulls were working among the cormorants and it just felt fishy. I headed out to the mid bay to scope things out. But it was just high tide and I had small hopes for finding much. Indeed I didn't. However, cruising around the familiar spots was fun. The water is about to come alive any minute now. I know that the baitfish are around because the birds are working them.

So, we wait another day or two. The winds are supposed to suck for the next 24.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Alright already...


5/6/08

Well, it is time to begin this thing again. I would have started to write earlier in the season, but I was just too busy and nothing really interesting was going on in terms of fishing. Except for the amazing flounder I hooked about a month ago in 20 seconds…then the beautiful cod I pulled up in front of Don and Joel’s faces a few weeks back. Ah, but why waste space on these occasions when the best is yet to come.

A few days ago (Sunday, 5/4) I felt fish in the air and hit a few of the rips to see if anything would surprise me. But I was only surprised by the lack of activity. It was foggy, misty, and calm, and I thought for sure that there would be some stripers around. But nothing. The terns were fairly abundant, but also not into anything.

Today was a beauty. Warm and calm. After harvesting a load of oysters I sped out to the mid bay to check on striper progress. A few terns balancing on debris and barking away, but no fish. Spotted plenty of baitfish popping out here and there. A good sign.

Last year it was 5/9 when I first hooked into surface schools (midday!)…so I predict any second the fish will show up. Temps in the bay are hitting the low 60s on good days over the past week. It has to happen soon.

Stay tuned…and iLa Mawana.

Saturday, January 12, 2008