Friday, December 21, 2007

12/21- Gale Force winds, Cold, Rainy, lets go fishin'!

Whewwwww........Today compared to last Monday when it was 30 degrees, and windy.... was a cake walk. The forecast switched from not good to absolutely pitiful, late last night. But what do you do when you've had a trip planned for over a month. You go and make the best of it.


GALE FORCE WINDS, RAIN, AND COLD is what it was when we left the dock, and being that it was a full moon rising, the falling tide current being pushed along by a heinous gale force wind sucked the water out of the river down to dead low tide, really fast.

Didn't want to get too close while taking this picture and make the poor sap feel too bad, but look hard and you'll see that Flats boats need water too. Understanding the tides, especially when there's a full moon, a 30 kt west wind, and taking a 26' deep V-boat up in creeks myself, has me on my toes so that kind of 4 hour wait doesn't happen.


Had Kirk and daughter Caitlin on board today from the Atlanta area. The last time we went it was 95 degrees, and Jack Crevalle was the big fish of the day. I told Kirk, "man, ya ought to fish in the fall or winter, it's soooo good then" . Well, it is! Except for today. But they were glad to just be out on a boat and doing some fishing.

We ended up leaving way later than initially planned, because of the weather. It was just so iffy this morning.

Of course, I wanted to fish the jetties. I wanted limits of those Speckled trout that chewed like it was their last meal yesterday instinctively knowing a meal in the next day of two would be hard to come by, obviously.

Caitlin was the first to hook up on something other that a creek Pinfish. And she caught a decent Trout. Net worthy and I was glad too because this guy was hangin on the hook by a thread.
Then Kirk caught a small trout we quickly let go.




As the current dropped and the boat swung on anchor sitting the bow up on the muddy creek bank, Caitlin hooked up something a bit scrappier, a small 7-striped Jetty Snapper, aka: Sheepshead. Then after that had a Needlefish hooked up. I haven't even seen one of them since the river was 80 degrees!


But then again Monday in the freezing wind a customer had a Jack. So the 62 degree water isn't phasing many species. A friend went on way back in one of those famous southerly Snook creeks we have here now, and caught 7 small Snook on Tuesday.


So, don't tell me that these fish are not
acclimating themselves, over the years.


That was about the end of our fish catching.

As we worked our way out into the ICW and into the 2-3 foot chop that was a whipping, frothing storm of whitecaps.


I was about to say, "well, lets bag this", but Caitlin was cheery and still fired up. So I headed to the back side of Ft. George to get out of the wind, and we found that anchoring was almost impossible, and the current had completely died.


Giving it a try for a moment, we headed back out of there, and headed for the little jetties to try a spot on the first of the incoming tide. But without any luck because my anchor wouldn't hold anywhere I wanted to be. So we finally bagged it and headed in. I cleaned Caitlin's Trout and Sheepshead for her, and bid them farewell till hopefully spring time.



I've been doing R&D with this style of anchor. A BIG one!
And found out today that there is no way it will hold my boat
in a gale of wind, of course. So there I am, back to the ole Fluke style. I'll stick to a small grapnel over a jetty anchor for fishing the rocks on windy days. Because my jetty anchors just bend out way to easily, and I've been needing a jetty anchor with 1/2" tines at least. So I'll see if a carefully placed 12 pound folding Grapnel will work.

It was one heck of a day. And as I sit here and watch the weathermen on TV that can't even imagine, can they? They talk about the wind as if it was just a disturbance to their hair-do's today. I'd love to take them out there and give them a real dose of wind, while trying to have them catch some fish.

The forecast is looking worse and worse for tomorrow, than just earlier today. Especially if catching a lot of fish is the concern, and I was told it was. So I doubt the bite will be hot and heavy in the N.E. 15-20 knot winds tomorrow, so as of right now I doubt I'll be going.
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Update: Saturday morning. SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY NORTH 25-30 KNOTS BECOMING EAST 15-20 LATER IN THE DAY.
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Another NON-Christmas for Cappy Dave. I'm sort of getting used to this holiday having zero meaning. Because how can ya enjoy them when you can't fish, and make some dough?

But I'm sure glad when they are over and life returns to normal.

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