I had a good trip with Martin and Vance Elshire in the fall, and they were interested in fishing during a warmer time of year, so we decided to try it today. I’ve been looking forward to this trip because both Martin and Vance are good fisherman with good casting skills, which really comes in handy in shallow water fishing. Tommy Thompson and I had fished the day before so I knew the morning low tide was going to make shoreline fishing a challenge, and the forecast was for strong easterly winds, making the shoreline very desirable. We left the Sea Hag marina around 8:30 and ran a few miles north to some rocks in 3-4 feet of water that had been holding some trout recently. The water temp was 67 degrees and the wind was a brisk ten knots. We began fishing some suspending lures and lipped crankbaits. The trout bite had been off a little from the excellent winter bite, but we managed several four-pounders before the bite quit.
Although we had caught some reds in the area the day before, the action slowed considerably and we ran across the river to a rocky area south of Hardy Point. This is a “redfish” area, which means that usually after telling someone that, they immediately catch a huge trout, but today the redfish were home, and schooling. Martin was nailing them left and right using a lipped crankbait. The first one he got was a fine 25 incher.
As sometimes happens when there’s a school around, Vance and Martin continued catching fish. At one point Martin caught two fish on consecutive casts. One of the last fish out of the school was clearly a biggie, as we noticed when his spinning reel was well down into the backing. He turned that fish, however, and it turned out to be this fine 26 3/4 fish weight in at 7.25 pounds on the Boga grip.
The wind was still a problem, moving around to the north, and still blowing at 15 knots, so we tried running into a small creek near Sand Point. Martin caught another trout and another redfish, putting an exclamation point on his mastery over his son, at least on this trip. We had a fine day, and hopefully we’ll get a chance to try some topwater fishing the next time Martin comes through town.
As I mentioned, Capt. Thompson and I fished the day before and we had some decent fishing with some nice trout and Tommy found this fine redfish as well….but we didn’t place in the Steinhatchee Community Tournament. There were some excellent fish weighed in, and our friend Jeff Evans scored the second largest trout, second largest redfish, and his wife Debby caught a nine-spotted redfish. They had a very good tournament, taking in almost $1000 in prize money. Jeff and Debby fish out of a Gheenoe launched in small creeks, and when he’s in a tournament it’s a good bet he will do well. Congrats to Jeff and Debby. As for me, my fish weren’t that hot, but I did win a giant Budweiser mirror which is displayed proudly in the boy’s clubhouse at Steinhatchee.