Erik decided to take up fly tying to further his addiction in fly fishing. He only worked a half day so he decided that he would come over to my place and tie a little bit before our night trip to our usual haunts.
He showed up around 430 and we started tying. Learning how to tie the Seaducer and how to palmer the hackle forward. This is a skill needed to tie the Schminnow. So after tying his first Seaducer he through a couple of Schminnows together to throw at the Snook. I put them in baggies so they wouldn’t get mixed up with my flies and labeled them #1 and #2 so he could use them in order.
Eddie was in town and he wanted to check out the action after picking up his BT at the shop. He was in town for business and was kind of planning on fishing. I don’t know how it worked out. He had a ton of fishing equipment…but no fishing clothes. He showed up in dress pants and fancy shoes. None the less we were off. Eddie hadn’t caught a Snook on fly so I was eager to show him what he is missing out on.
We get up to the first dock. Eddie readies his cast and we move slowly up to the light. There is 6-8 Snook running around the light wanting to eat anything. Eddie flips his first cast in and hooked up! Got it all the way to the boat. I reach over to take out the fly and the Snook simply spit out the fly and swam away. It was about 3lbs. First cast and first Snook. Great odds.
We had a prearranged schedule on swapping out to let the next one fish. It was Erik’s turn. We float up to the second dock. Erik makes a couple cast and pulls out a **** trout. It was a good start for the night! I looked back and there was already a boat heading for the first light where Eddie had caught a Snook. My turn on the 3rd light of the set. I made a dozen… or two cast back into the fish and finally got a chew. It was a nice sized Snook. Within a couple seconds it spit out the fly.
I looked back at the first light. The boat that had moved it gave up quick, and had already left. We headed back for the light and to our surprise the Snook were still hanging out. Eddie was up again. A couple cast later…his second Snook. Same size as the first.
It was time to move off to the next set of lights. It was Erik’s turn. Imagine an underwater light that is in 7-8ft of water that turns itself off. The fish get so thick on the light that you can only see a faint green on the surface! Erik made a couple cast and got railed (high speed train not freight) by a Snook around 6lbs. The Snook went for a good jump mixed with some tailwalking and spit the hook.
Next set I was going to run the troller on. The fish are SUPER spooky. And because I gave my turn up, it was a go for Eddie. The dock has a 2 underwater light set-up. The larger Snook get territorial and chase the **** Snook around. I guess this is there way of showing the pecking order. I told Eddie that he could have shots at the first light, and I would take the second. Eddie made several cast to the Snook, but they were not having it. We drifted into casting range of the Second light and a couple Snook were sitting on the surface looking to eat anything that was in front of there face. I told Eddie to make the cast. He was pretty close to a **** Snook so I though he would get a quick take. The **** didn’t even move. A much prettier one came from the back of the light. Tracked the fly for easily 5ft and slammed it. Eddie did great fighting the fish and in short order it was my turn to grab it. I reach over to lip the fish and get a good grip on it. As my thumb was going in the mouth I felt the fly whizz past me and hit my shoulder. I clamped down and flipped her onto the deck. I was ready for anything… even a football tackle. This one was staying for a pic!
7lbs on the Boca! Look at Eddie Cheezin.
To put this in perspective. A guy that has never caught a Snook on fly caught one on his first cast, and within 2 hours had a momma 7lb’er! To me thats amazing.
The Snook hit the bottom and it was time to move to the next dock. It was Erik’s turn and we were headed for a Redfish dock. Erik had not caught a Redfish on fly. Erik had to replace the fly on his rod so he tied on his #1 Schminnow that he tied. We get closer to the dock and there was 2 fish swimming circles about the size of a hula hoop. A couple of cast in Erik managed to get it on the path of destruction. I told him to wait for the fish to come around closer. Wait… Wait… Strip Strip Strip…WHAM! Redfish on! We get it to the boat and snap a couple pics. Erik’s First Redfish on Fly… and His FIRST fish on a fly he tied! EPICNESS!
Eddie helping out, but you can see it’s a 3 spotter!
“You are salty, but I don’t care”….(Kisses again)
We made a loop around and saw another 60-70 Snook on other docks. They weren’t eating as good as the first sets. One light had 40 fish on it and they were railing little baits, but they didn’t want anything to do with the fly.
Last dock worth mention is starting to be special to me. We showed up and there were 10 or so Snook sitting on the surface waiting to ambush. Eddie flipped his fly in and got an eat… and promptly pulled the hook. Second cast…. EAT!…. and pull. Third cast…EAT!!!… and Pull. Fourth cast… Eat!!… pull… It ate again! Got it all the way to the boat. It was about 3 1/2lbs. 5 eats in 4 consecutive cast!
We had boated the Slam but did not get any other individual honors. It was getting early and we had to go check on the Tarpon. We showed up at the light and they were smacking little crabs and white bait off the surface. When I say smacking, I really mean killing with a very horrific and aggressive eat. One that creates nightmares! We get up to the light and there is 3 50lb Tarpon swimming right at us. The swim within 10ft of us and swim under the boat. I looked back at Eddie. He was in a state of Shock, jaw on the ground. We spent about half an hour at the light but we couldn’t get them to eat. It was getting really early and I had to be at work in a couple hours. We called it and headed back to the ramp.
We launched at Ken Thompson Park in Sarasota. As we turned to go over New Pass Bridge someone put 3 shark across the lane of traffic. They were all 4ft Atlantic Sharpnose. I called LBKPD and they sent someone out there to take care of it. But still someone caught, and killed 3 Shark… to lay across a lane of traffic. BS! They had left there kill for someone to hit, and most likely cause an accident! How immature and disrespectful to everyone involved. End Rant
Good night had by all! I got an hour of sleep, back at work. Go home and replace the DOZEN flies we lost for another trip tonight!