My apologies for not having blogged any updates in a while but it has been quite the busy few weeks. Busy time is winding down a bit and I finally had a chance to get some me time. I’ve spent quite some time studying for classes, managing some projects, and working on bettering my photography. I’m also currenty trying to plan my pre-tarpon season fishing this spring… which I hope to involve quite a bit of permit fishing in the lower keys.
It is always exciting to see the progression of dedicated fly fisherman from their beginnings to the point where they are tucking 40ft back casts under some bushes where a snook lays in ambush mode. The excitement is only much sweeter when it is your friend who picks up that fly rod. My buddy Capt. Peter Babb (www.island-charter.com) had contacted me a couple of weeks ago explaining to me symptoms which I had concluded to be the fly rod flu. My buddy had finally caught the fly bug and with a pencil and calander, we penciled in a weekend to get out and hunt down some fish in his home waters of the 10,000 Islands with fly rods in hand. Pete had done fly charters in the past but rarely has he had time on the bow with a fly rod in hand and great determination to chuck feathers at the fish in his back yard.
There was a slight chill in the air early this morning as we headed out into the thicket of the 10,000 Islands on the 17 foot Pathfinder tunnel skiff. Peter had quite the agenda for us today. Arriving at the first planned destination, we were greeted by some rolling juvi tarpon and ravaging snook pushing bait up against the shallow bank and tearing through them. These weren’t the big snook that the 10K is infamous for, but still decent hard fighting, tippet fraying snook. Throwing a popper fly at the large pushing wakes, I managed to catch 3 of these snook right on the surface. What an incredible way to start the morning. We continued our day poling around the shallows sight fishing snook and redfish. It was very reassuring to have seen 2 big snook and actually have one shot at one of these beasts. Isn’t it truley amazing how mother nature has a way of bouncing back? We saw some big healthy snook and watched the angriest Floridian redfish I have ever seen plow my fly, but the highlight of my day was watching Peter make an excellent cast; as the fly hit the water, a redfish tailed down and pinned his fly to the ground… rest is history as this was my buddy’s first redfish on fly, and a very respectable 10lb fish at that. Yes, it was a cold day and big winds were blowning right into bays we had to cross but I would say catching some big redfish and snook on fly makes it all worth while. I left the 10,000 Islands again with sore arms and memories of another great fishing trip with an old friend. The snook are poppin, the redfish are as aggressive as I have ever seen them, the flats are teaming with fish… life is good… go catch’em!!
A few of these photos are courtesy of Capt. Peter Babb.
In between my studies, my social life, and fishing… I have been playing with the camera a bit and playing with different angles within automotive photography… perhaps something I may be doing more of in the future? Who knows..
Speaking of Redfish and Snook, don’t forget about the up coming Maverick/Vero Backcountry Fly tournament. The event will be held in Vero Beach on March 6th. Entry form and information can be found at http://www.verobackcountry.com/upcoming.php. Join us out there for some great exciting fun and top notch comraderie.