Saturday, August 21, 2010
I arrived at the put in spot at 7PM. The conditions were ideal: Sun low in the sky, the tide was just starting to come in, a light breeze tickling the waters surface. The water temperature felt like bath water and was just ticking 91 degrees.
The plan was to head back to our favorite redfish spot and fish the oyster bar that backs up onto a lush grass flat. Keith was working the drop off along the channel and I was opposite him working the shoreline on the way back to the oyster bar. There was fishy action going on all around us with finger mullet scattering, fish wakes chasing, and birds wading and diving. The area was ALIVE! Perfect conditions....but...the problem was, someone forgot to tell the redfish to show up.
We worked the area and the entire water column with a myriad of flies, soft plastics, and Mirr-o-lures. Nothing. Not even a chase or a tap. When you see about 100 finger mullet scattering and spraying into the air, that usually means a bigger fish is chasing them. Casting past this spot and working the lure with the tide SHOULD trigger a hook-up, right? But once again, the fish haven't read the latest issue of Florida Sportsman.
After an hour and a half, we decided to target some docks with lights to see if we might be able to find some snook.
"Up ahead in the distance, I saw a shimmering light" (Who would've ever thought I'd resort to using an Eagles lyric?) There was an eerie green glow next to the seawall. The shade of green that you might see in a sci-fi film...around the same shade of green as my kayak. As we paddled closer, I could make out baitfish darting and large shadows chasing. It looked like some sort of sci-fi aquarium.
We started casting. Nothing. Changed lures. Nothing. Changed lures. Nothing. What would Captain Kirk do? "Captains log....suplemental....we've discovered an eerie.... green.... light with fish feeding around it....yet.....we can't seem to....catch any.... fish Mister!" (Wow...a Star Trek reference? Really?)
After 30 minutes of this, we decided to try another dock. This time, with a light that pointed downward. First cast, BAM! 22 inch trout! Keith got the hook-up on it's twin a few moments later. After about 4 fish each, all between 18 and 22 inches, and FAT, the action quieted. I made around 6 casts without a fish.
Time to move.
Over the next 2 hours, this cycle repeated itself over and over. Cast, catch, release. Cast, catch release. Cast, catch, release. Cast.....cast.....on to the next dock.
I think the reason that the first light didn't produce was because the light was projected upwards, giving the fish a better view of it's prey. Any other time, it's the opposite, with the light projecting down. All they can see is the profile silhouetted against the surface.
We eventually got tired and headed back in...today, my wrists are sore from horsing so many large trout out from under the docks. The bigger trout put up a harder fight for sure.....