Saturday, January 27, 2007

1/27 - We earned these Trout!!!!!

Holy MOSES!!!!
Travis R. and myself, out like two ole buds, chasing the ever illusive OVER 15" Speckley bastards for the Fish Box.

So we left out at 'sun-up', 7am.
It was beautiful out, not nearly as cold as yesterday. Sunny, warmer, and I had all the hopes in the world for Travis to catch some decent Trout. We were supposed to go originally on December 9, but that day was a small craft advisory. But hell at least there was a lot of Trout chewin' then. But I knew we'd not be able to fish, so we rescheduled and Travis picked today.

First off "east of the boat ramp" we headed. Because the general rule for Trout Trackers is about Late Nov. early December is to concentrate all your efforts closer to inlets. But, forget about it if you fish the St. Johns River inlet. Because they just are not there in masses. (they were, and then of course they disappeared)
We went to a few spots, never lost a bait, and I caught a Bluefish, and a 3" Sea Bass. That was it.
And when I get pissed, I change zip codes. So off we went down river to some hopefully Bluefish-less waters, and warmer waters.
Nope, same temp 57 degrees. As far as 5 miles west of the inlet. Still no bites.
Now, it's at least 10am!!!!

I'm so pissed that I'm ready to go to home depot, and quit this gig. So on the way back I get a premonition, "Ahhh, lets go up here and see if I can slid into this's been so long since I've been in there, probably 5+ years", I told Travis.
So we went for it. The first leg was okay, we had water. Remember now, it was dead low tide starting to barely come in. And then we reached the first mud bar, and Travis jumped up on the bow deck and searched the water pointing which way to head, as did I from the helm. I'm heading in here all by my photographic memory. We twist and turn through the creek and head over mud bar #2. The depth finder went blank as we drifted over 2 feet of water, and we could see the bottom, again.

Then, we made it to the next turn and after that we were in! I knew exactly where we were and and then we were safely in after that. So we moved in towards the Trout spot, where we (me and some buddies) used to mess them up on just 1/4 oz. jigs and Creme Lil Fishie's. It's always been a January creek. And as soon as February came, we'd stop fishing it. All this took place when I used to have a smaller boat as my second one.

By now it's at least 11-11:30 am...we are fish-less. But I'm not a wimp, I'm a Trout Tracker at heart. And I do not give up. I'm a die hard. And Travis came here to float-fish and see the in's and out's of it all. So, this was about the last ditch effort for the day. But I was willing, hell I only had Travis on the boat, it wasn't like I would do all this to go "party boating" with 4 passengers up in this creek.

We anchored up, just below two dudes in a flats boat pitching jigs and plastic baits, drifting in front of us. Travis and I dropped our floats over the stern and as soon as they got behind the boat 20 feet Travis reeled in a nice fattie! Then, he did it again....and then I got a chance.

By now the two flats boat dudes, came drifting down the side of my boat. Pleasantly, I asked, "Have ya'll been catching them?" They said abruptly, "Nope". I said back, "well I made it all the way up in here, and since I did we finally caught some and they are the first ones all day." They said nothing back and smugly just drifted by us and continued casting their lures.

I figured they were pissed we were here...being I'm 26', and probably don't belong up in this creek. Or it was because they caught none and we did in the first 2 minutes. But I've fished this creek for 20 year, and wasn't bothering them.

Either way, we continued wacking some decent keeper Trout and some throw backs. Then, like a light switch. IT WAS OVER!
I told Travis, "ain't this just great, they wanna play this game, the teasing game".
Been there done that got the T-shirt, and the bruises. But this was all new to Travis, and VERY VERY old to me. So we moved around and caught a few more and then in a matter of a few hours, the current was gone. Because it was a very weak incoming tide again today. So the further we ended up into this creek system, the less current we would have. Because with such a low high tide today, there's just not enough water to make current all the way back here.
After thinking about it we could have just tossed out some shrimp on jigs near a oyster bar, after the Trout quit, and sat it out waiting on a Red or a Drum, but we stayed at the float rig. Working hard and moving around.

So we ended up with 7-8 keepers up to 19 inches, just shy of a two person limit out of all the ones we caught. No Reds, No sheeps, no other fish at all, maybe a few more Bluefish that's all.

So is today the last hurrah of the Trout, till Feb.'s closure, for Dave? As I said before, I'd at least like to go out with a big bang, and load the box for someone. Or even myself.
I ususally do end January with a big bang of Trout, but it's obvious this ain't you average January, either.

Although the water is cold, good and cold. And yes, anything below a solid 60 degrees is a tough day on them. So this maybe it.

The ole January Creek.....damn, I cannot believe I forgot about it. That's not right......I never really forgot, just never thought I could put my 26 feet of boat, up in it at dead low tide. But sometimes ya just gotta have some balls.

But then again, this ain't your average 26 footer either. It's the super tank...the USS Speckled Trout!