I received an email from Gavin who said he would be coming in from England and would like to book a trip. So the plans were made. He had wanted to go early in the week on Monday but with the front I told him Tuesday afternoon but we ended up changing it to Wednesday for the better weather. Since he had to be in Sarasota after the trip I changed fishing destinations to the Tierra Verde area so he could get to Sarasota quicker after the trip.
Well the morning started out with loading the boat up in the morning only to find light ice on the entire deck of the boat, my livewell frozen shut and my console hatch frozen shut. I was glad I had a later pick up time to let the fish thaw out a little before we got there. I planned on fishing the deep holes on the flats, that were out of the wind, with live shrimp and Gulp shrimp on a 1/4 oz jig head.
Gavin and Lucy arrived a little early but the timing was perfect. So armed with 6 dozen shrimp and a plentiful supply of Gulp off we went. I stopped at an area that recently produced a smorgasbord of fish from small grouper to trout and redfish.
With the water being cold and the winds we had been having I was banking on the fish to be in deeper holes out of the windy areas we had been having and it paid off.
Before my boat was set in position someone not to far off from us catches a redfish and they see this and get excited and I was glad to see a good sign of what was to come.
Once they got the hang of the circle hook and then how to work the Gulp on a jig head it was game on. We would go for about 1-1.5 hrs at a time with a non stop bite before it would slow down and then I would make a move to my next area and it would be like someone flipped the light switch back on with them getting fish on the first cast, every time we moved and sometimes the lure never made it to the bottom. We had great action for 6 hrs with very few lulls.
On the last move I told Gavin that along the edge of the sand hole behind the boat he would get mostly trout with a few reds mixed in and at the front of the boat near a grass point he would get redfish. So he opted for the redfish spot and just caught one after another.It was great teaching Lucy to cast and then switching Lucy over to the jig and hooking fish for her while trying to show her how to work the jig, what a problem to have.
The fish were not big but we got reds from 16-21 inches, trout from 14-22 inches with a few flounder, ladyfish and a sheapshead. Gavin was like a kid in the candy store and we had to cut him off because they had to make it to the rehearsal dinner in Sarasota. But on his last cast his red got off and we couldn't leave like that after such a banner day. So I told him go for it until you land one (knowing it wouldn't take long) but then his next cast he had a miss. So he casts out again and has a miss and I tell him to pause for a sec and then work it again and sure enough he landed his last red of the trip. So I said that's more like the ending we needed.
The tally for the trip was:
And a Partridge in a pear tree.
Here are some pictures again no monster fish but happy clients.
Capt. George Hastick
" The Fish Hunter "