Whoa, this heat is hard to be in day after day.......as I've been busier than a one armed angler. Especially, with the kid trips, which I'm sure soon will end abruptly as they head back to school once again.
So today, I had a solo fisherman aboard Allen N. from Salt Lake City, Utah. And when I said the word Trout, he thought as many do, that "OUR" Trout are like his trout. NO EVEN CLOSE. Our trout are serious predators, they are also members of the same "drum family" as a Redfish is, a Black Drum is, and a Croaker is. I'm a bit partial, and I believe they are the best of the drum family of fishes, are the most beautiful, and also are what make the Jettywolf and I click 12 months a year. Only problem is, the word SUMMER. With a published temp preferance of 60 to 80 degree water temp. I believe, that the genuine temp preferance is really more like 60-75 degrees in N.E. Florida. For the sheer reason that they seem to bite a whole lot better when the water's in that range. And really, isn't that all that counts?
We departed at 7am and I was already a ball of sweat. We broke the "ice" over a sumberged oyster reef in the river that I'm sort of "willing with all my might" to produce keeper Black Drum, but of course is constantly coming up short, with 13 inchers, rather than the 15 to 22" fish that have been there in summers past.
But Allen did catch a Black Drum at 13 inches.....of course. Along with pinners, croakers, and seabass. Which meant time to try something else. So we moved back about 50 feet and started float-rigging the area. Allen wanted "active" fishing, not just all "bait-n-wait". So I taught him the finer details of the float-rig, N.E. Florida style. While trying the spot that was 15'-20' deep on the last of the falling tide.
We both caught ZERO. Which meant ANCHOR UP...time to move.
Next spot, a seriously memorable spot for me. I've caught so many big Trout here it's rediculas. And customers have caught Trout to 7.5 pounds here. I had no idea what would happen, because I have not fished the area since last spring, maybe back in April.
Allen's first drift of the float-rig.........BAM! 22 incher. In my book, a 98 degree windless weather Trophy Trout.
About 20 minutes passes.....and then my float takes a dive.
A nice 19 incher comes to the net. Yeah, I was fishing along side Allen.
Then, about 20 minutes later....my float takes a dive again. The fish pulls drag and makes 4 long runs. I thought it was a Redbass. And thank goodness it wasn't.....it was a 26" Gator Trout. YEAH BABY! These are the fish we came for. My spot didn't let me down today. So we kept working it. But as the current weakened, we recieved no more bites. But hell, this was sure worth the stop.
I tried a few other spots in the area, even though I marked 86.7 degree surface temp on my Raymarine C-120 sounder temp gauge. It was so hot we couldn't breath. Allen was sweating, his face was all wet. And I was dreaming of November around Thanksgiving. So we tried one more spot and float-rigged up under a dock for a few bites. But they weren't Trout bites.
Time to head back east to clean-green-cooler- ocean water, on the rising tide. We stopped at the little Jetties and tried a great spot. Good current, cooler water and 15' deep along the rocks there. No bites.
Time to hit the jetties. Allen needs a Redfish. We got there and worked two spots. And the Redfish that ate a live river cricket was on my hook. A 18-1/2 inch RB.......okay, in the B-O-X ya go!