Tuesday, June 24, 2008

6/24 - Breakin' in a greenhorn.

Had Patricia M. and her 14 yr. old grandson Brendan visiting from Texas, aboard today. When I talked to her yesterday evening I said, "tell your grandson to eat his Wheaties...he's gonna need it".

Well, he needed more than Wheaties. Because to use an ole 'Celtic' term (inside joke) used by my friend Nick Watson...Brendan didn't seem too "Sprightly", even as we pulled away from the dock at 7am.

I jigged up bait, for possible live bait King Fishing (King Mackerel) after we paid a visit to the man in the big brown suit...the BlackTip Sharks, that are infesting the waters behind the shrimp boats. Again, big fat greenies at the inlet were a real bear to catch. Their small, and far and few between. Probably because I haven't been out there on the best tide to catch them.

So after putting maybe (10) Greenies in the live well we headed toward the Shrimp boats dragging beyond the inlet.

Being totally unaware of any one's fishing experience, I give as quick a lesson as I can. But this is really an O.J.T. fishing. When hooked up to a 100 pounder, dumping 3/4's the spool of line on the reel. There's no explaining every aspect. Ya just have to do it.

I pulled up on a shrimp boat just as they were hauling back the nets. I took about 3 casts before I put the bait in the right spot........then it was game on! I handed Brendan the rod.

It was about the only time that he looked "sprightly" as he held on for, my tackles sake!
He started pumping and reeling as I coached him.

I never know if the kids I take are really into what we're doing. I certainly cannot ever get a read on many of them. And the ones that I do feel are having a ball, of course tell me. But most are blank pages of paper. If I only got to go on a private charter to go after Trout to Sharks when I was their age. I'd probably be more addicted than I am now.

Brendan worked the shark closer to the boat and than had enough. He did good. But his arms were giving out on him. So now I gave some instruction of how to handle these bad dudes at boat side. But this Blacktip wanted no parts of us or the boat. The rod was doubled over into a horseshoe shape for probably 20 minutes before I could hand the rod back to Brendan, so we could get a photo and then a release.

We had the shark boil the surface, then come up and see us. Then splash us, then smack the side of the boat with it's tail, then splash us again, then finally I handed the rod off to Brendan, and immediately the shark would take advantage of it and go south again. So I pulled it up from under the boat, and would attempt a hand off again. Then I realized I needed my leadering glove (btw, a Kevlar filleting glove makes a great leadering glove for these fish). So Pat while trying to take a few photos got me my glove and Brendan and I went for it.

I usually want the shark to flip over and give the "I'm really tired sign" before going for the photo and release. And we barely got it.

Brendan was suppose to stick his head somewhere in the photo, but between the shark fight and the un-Sprightly-ness, we missed him and just got my big _ _ _ in there holding the shark at boat side.

I say, let'em chew on this.... does Aluminum alloy taste good?

In my old boat I had marks in the fiberglass where these same Sharks chewed on the gunnel of the boat. But before I could pull this one any closer it copped a bad attitude, so I just cut the leader....quick!

We regrouped, and packed in the chasing shrimp boats and headed to the kingfish spot.
By now Brendan was in the head down, looking kinda pukey stage of life. But we proceeded.

I decided to forget about trolling these tiny live Greenies for Kings and instead I set up a good slow drift, with two sea anchors. The wind was blowing SW so if we drifted we cover the same ground as on a troll.

I pitched out two live greenies had the boat laying nicely. And commenced to waiting for a load ZZZZZZing on the clicker of my mini B-197 Accurate twin drag reels. Brendan was what I call a, d-e-a-d soldier by now. Sea sick? We just couldn't tell. But lifeless, Yes.

So Pat and I sat and talked. And as I was reeling in a line to check my mighty but tiny live baits, one of the rods bent over and the line took off with a Kingfish on it. And by the time I was handing the rod to Pat.......The fish was off the hook.

Dang, I'm not having much luck lately keeping these fish hooked, and getting them to the boat is almost like asking too much. Of course the fish hit right when I was in the middle of checking the baits. Perfect timing.

I put on all new fresh baits and continued to drift. Pat was concerned for Brendan, and he was pretty lifeless. So we gave it a few more minutes and headed back to the dock.

Damn, two days in a row with strikes. Two days in a row with lost Kings. And a brand new fish bag, that I haven't even used yet.

Well, I have Dale H. on board Thursday and he's a healthy and strong fishing animal. So I expect to see all this turn around. I just hope he doesn't get to wore out on after joining the Hundred pounder club, first. Because we ain't gonna be quitting after just one.

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