Had me a "solo" angler today. Mike S. Over worked, and ready for some fishing action. I was really sceptical about what would happen, since it was days since I've been out because of the latest Nor'easter that passed with lots of rain, huge seas and 25kt winds.
But since we don't get any tropical storms, or even a brushing by hurricane anymore which are usually the "kick in the groin" that this area......I mean river, needs to rocket us into a different season. Sending the dreaded summer water temps, heat, and stagnentcy away while ushering in "genuine fall."
I'll even take another Nor'easter, just as back up if that what it takes to insure that summer is gone for good!
I had a buddy, who was out in the rain, wind and over cast on and off skies, last week just before the really bad winds came, and he had a banner day hiding out, in the shallow creeks. He said, "Dave, it was incredible. The fish were on the serious feed bag!"
So, today I was hoping for the same. But, in the big water of the river. Now that all was clear, with light winds, sunny skies, and flat calm waters. This trip with Mike was scheduled, then re-scheduled, then re-scheduled again, and then today we finally made it.
Feeling like a "river fishing party boat" most of the time. Today, having just one passionate light tackle angler aboard had me really excited!!
It was the full moon, I'm usually suspect of the wacky tides that the moon produces. I wasn't worried, because I still have the NEW MOON tides at the end of this month to look forward too. THAT'S WHEN THE KILLER CURRENT COMES, VIA 6+++ FOOT TIDES! So, today will be nothing in comparison.
Mike was early. I like that. And I had a live-well filled with very sprightly shrimp. No chasing finger mullet, throwing the cast net, wasting any time....I'm over all that! Armed with my "float-rig" rods, and a few light casting rods we headed out at first light.
First spot, the current was strong. But gave Mike a really good chance to get the "knack" of fishing the float-rigs for the first time. It's always easier to learn, when the currents moving good versus hardly moving. We didn't get any bites at first. But as the tide slowed a bit, and I re-anchored on the spot, it was GO-TIME. Quickly came 12 Speckled Trout up to 19". And in a short time, I was counting a limit of 10 in the fish box.
Of course, I related to Mike that if I was to only catch Speckled Trout on a float the rest of my fishing life, I'd die a happy fisherman...."which ain't gonna happen around here by any stretch of the imagination." I'll have to move to Louisiana to make that life-long dream come true. But as long as we're "Boxing" some fatties here, I'm happy!
Mike was happy too, as he was excited about all the "good fried fish dinners" he'll have.
After "boxing" our limits of Trout, we ran back to the boat ramp for a pit-stop then I looked for a spot to possibly catch a keeper Redbass on the float-rigs. By now the tide was good and high, the current was slower. We didn't score.
So it was time to anchor up and bottom fish for some Reds or Drum, just as the current started on the bottom of the river. I pulled out the light bottom rods, rigged up with my newest bottom rig. Fresh water fisherman would call it a "drop-shot" rig. Originally, I used it for just Croakers and Drum on a few velcro like bottom in the river, where a hook can't touch the bottom or it gets snagged. But I have found that the rig works all over the place, because it gets your bait off the bottom.
We weren't fishing very long as the first push of ebbing tide started when Mike gets to feel a nice puller......
It's funny how Black Drum are. If you miss them initially, they'll come back! Mike had a rod tip pulled toward the water, actually missing the initial bite. And that happened a few times in the next few hours. And the "bite" returned moments later.
This happened several times. While loosing a few really big fish in the proccess. But it was okay because the fish box was looking pretty good already, with some beautiful Trout.
Gotta love that "tug 'o war" though. And it's always better on the lighter tackle.
Ya can't catch'em all, that's for sure. Or what would make ya come back next time?? It's FISHIN', not always just catchin'. And as the tide got half way out, is when we started to experience the FULL MOON tide. The current went from manageable on the light rigs, to "where the heck is the bottom??"
Mike was tired after working some crazy shifts at work. So as the afternoon winds picked up we headed back to clean the catch.
Mike left out headed for a nap, with a big bag of fresh Trout and Black Drum fillets.
Thanks to that Nor'easter, which we so badly needed. I believe, we're definately now into the genuine "FALL" fishing season.
The surface water temp was 74 degrees on my machine.
Yes, we caught some Croakers, a few Seabass but while float-rig fishing for the Trout, recieved really not much harrassment from bait stealers. Which was a RELIEF!
I believe it's GO-TIME, folks. It's the JETTYWOLF's time of year.
Have my trusty float-rigs....will travel!