- Tyler Legg
- Charlotte, NC, United States
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Monday, August 13, 2012
For the past week I've been down in Florida soaking up the sun, the smell of salt in the air, and the fishing. Which were all abundant.
If you haven't heard, the Sunshine State is Heaven on earth for anglers! There's plenty of opportunities for fly anglers too. I took those opportunities and did what I could to make the best of them. Given I fish freshwater 99.9% of the time, saltwater fly fishing was an entirely different world for me! Last Thursday, I fished with former Davidson River Outfitters guide Josh Almond down on Sanibel Island. Big snook lurking just inches from shore were on the menu from sun up until about noon. Fish upwards of 30"+ were cruising just below the waves. As fly fisherman, Josh and I were following these fish along the shoreline in attempt to lure them to our white Schminnows and Clousers. Like mentioned, snook were the main course on the menu, but bonnetheads cruising in the shallows sidetracked me several times. One of them, which Josh spotted making a beeline for shore, pushed 4 ft. As the shark got within 10 ft, I tossed my Merkin Crab out ahead of his path. He turned and inspected my fly, but quickly rejected. 30Ib mono would have been useless in landing him, but the 5 second fight would have likely been worth it! Josh landed a very nice snook (see pic below) the previous day, but we failed to find snook that were willing to eat on Thursday morning.
Later that day, it was time to fish one of the jetties on the island. Other than a run in with some manatees and Josh's fish being "baracuda'ed" right at our feet, we didn't get into anything substantial. It was still one of the best days of fishing I've had in a while. Sometimes catching isn't nearly as exciting as the things you experience while fishing.
On the last evening, I fished Sanibel following a
nasty storm. The tide was just rolling in and baitfish were moving in by the thousands. I tied on a Schminnow, and fished it just below the surface. Strip, strip, strip, stop. Strip, strip, stop. Nothing. As soon as the fly hit the water on the next cast, a streak of silver shot out of the water and my rod bent. Baby tarpon? It was close enough... A close cousin to the silver king, the ladyfish. Just like the tarpon, they seem to stay in the air more than the water. They're not 200Ibs, but they're an absolute blast to catch on the fly rod. After a few more on the fly an approaching storm and dusk drove me off the water. In my book, it was an excellent finale to the trip. Big fish are fun, but sometimes the little guys can light up the day.
It was a nice change of pace! In the end, it's good to be back in NC.
Stocking Schedule Changes!
Make sure you check out the new stocking schedule provided by the NCWRC!
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