Redfish Progress Continued October 07 2014, 0 Comments
I finally had some luck with the baby tarpon. It took a few hours and a lot of waving my own personal lightning rod around in the rain, but it did pay off. I usually try to fish on weekdays, in an effort to avoid weekend warriors, pontoon boats, and children. So, true to form, I set out on a Friday morning. It had been a pretty good day, with the exception of having only jumped the little guys and coming close, but not actually landing them. I hopped in my truck for a minute to grab a drink (door was open) and caught some sudden movement in my side mirror. I traced the 30lb mono attached to the 8" top water lure down an old spinning rod to a small clenched fist. This ten year old kid was booking it to the spot I'd been fishing, four feet off of my bumper. So, like any mature, ladylike fisherwoman would do, I jumped out of my truck and beat him there. He stopped ten feet away (there are literally acres and acres and miles of roadside ditch to fish) - it was like an old-fashioned stand off, and lobbed his football of a lure right across my casting path. I wanted to teach this kid some fishing etiquette, but settled on asking him if he'd had any luck. He said no, and asked what I was fishing for; I said I'd gotten a few gar, but I was after the little tarpon - he cut me off - "There's tarpon in here!?" - he was ecstatic. I was thinking "there were...gone now, probably thought your lure was here to eat them", but replied with "yeah, little ones, but the ones over there in that other ditch might be big enough to eat your lure". Winning. He took off to try it, and I went back to getting hits and jumping but not landing fish. Moments later, "is fly fishing hard?" came around the side of my truck. I gave a short answer and asked if he'd gotten out of school early that day, to which he said he went to private school and he didn't have school that day (God has a sense of humor).
After the next 30 minutes, I knew more personal details about this kid than I know about all of my family and friends combined. He wasn't 10 - he was 15 and was "getting his learners permit tomorrow". I gave him some lighter line and a little weighted fly to try on his spinning rod, and he stuck around and watched me cast. It started raining again and the fish started hitting once more. I hooked one and his face lit up when he saw it jump. I finally landed one of the little suckers, and this kid got to see and hold his first tarpon. He also got a little bit of a lesson on fish handling...I had to.
...And here is the redfish update! The background was starting to get a bit overwhelming - I just didn't know where to go, and needed some reference point. So, I decided to go ahead and get some base layers on the fish!