Had the pleasure of fishing with Jim Sutton again today. Jim's the Times Union Newspapers Outdoor editor.
The last time we fished together is when he worked for the St. Augustine RECORD, and we did a story about pitchin Jigs-N-Shrimp at the St. Augustine inlet's rocks way back in 1998 I think.
Ya know.....back when hardly a soul threw jigs n shrimp at the jetty rocks in Mayport even.
I know it was in April, because I just did the Florida Sportsman Fishing Expo. And did seminars about light tackle Jetty fishing, and the expo was in March.
And man, did we catch a lot of fish that day down in St. Augustine!
Reds, Trout, Yellowmouths, Ringtails, Drum, Jacks, Blues, Spanish Macs, Flounder, Sheepshead....It was a rally of fish down there along the rocks.
Well, today we tried it out of Mayport. I talked to Jim via email because I read his article on fishing with a "clicker" type float in Fernandina with Terry Lacosse up in the creeks.
So we got talking and planned on doing a story about the REAL style of Float-rig fishing for Trout and more, that I do.
We left out at 8am damn near dead low tide. It was cold as all get-out, but of course we've fished in colder. The wind was light, but blew harder and harder as we fished.
We fished and fished....I did sort of catch a few right off the bat. But I lost each fish , as if I had Teflon all over my hooks. They just shook off, or slipped off the hook as I was reeling them in. This hardly ever happens to me. But never say never!
It was really tough conditions. I could just feel it in my bones after the first spot we tried, that this wasn't looking too good. Because I know what "should" happen on my spots.
I did box a small 15 incher though, and Jim caught a small Yellowmouth Trout and a Bluefish.
We really didn't just, give up. We stayed at at. I fish as hard at 3pm as I do at 7am, and that's a key to success many times. But you have to get bit, before you can catch. And we weren't getting bit!
The largest Trout I did catch up in the backwater's was 19 inches. But that fish was a loner. And with a slow tide because of the NW winds blowing at least 15 knots and gusting, the forecasted 4.2' incoming was obviously stifled, and we got ate alive by Pinfish with no current moving.
So we bagged it and headed in after a good 6 hour try.
JUST MY DAMN LUCK!
I would have loved Jim to see a day like we had on January 6th or 8th....when I had 6 and 7 pounders on the boat, plus Drum and limits of specks. But the weather today was nothing like then.
REMEMBER, I SAID THE WEATHER IS USUALLY DAMN NEAR PERFECT THE FIRST TWO WEEKS OF JANUARY????
WELL, TODAY IS THE 14TH...THE END OF THE FIRST TWO WEEKS. FROM HERE ON OUT 80 DEGREE DAYS ARE HARD TO COME BY!!
(just call me if ya need to know the real fisherman weather patterns....don't call Tim)
With Speckled Trout closing on Feb. 1st we were sort of under the gun to get a float fishing story out there with some really big time action. But we'll be trying again.
Jim's on notice that a call from me could come any day. If the fish are chewin and the weather's good....even in February. Because I don't stop fishing for those Trout for 29 days. That would be like asking an Eskimo not to eat snow!!
I'm thinking of a plan, I have in the back of my mind. Where the trout stack up, and the action is good. It's a run from my regular waters, and a gamble to say the least. But we'll not only be using a float-rig and live shrimp, but we could also use my "winter ugly" MirrOlures too. To catch'em.
I have my next charter on Thursday. The temp is supposed to be up and down, and the rain is supposed to go from up to down too....We'll have to see what the deal is.