As a fishing guide here at St. Simons Island, it’s not very often that I get to hit the water by myself. I really don’t prefer to fish alone but sometimes you just can’t find a short notice partner. Today was one of those days. I called my dad and a few of my fellow guides and they all had other commitments.
With the upcoming Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Red Trout Tournament I wanted to get out there no matter what and start game planning a little bit. I wanted to cover some areas that I haven’t been in a while and follow up on a couple of “hot leads” that I had caught wind of.
As it typically happens the hot leads yielded very little. The tables turned when I started picking through some of my old spots that I haven’t been to in a while. I pulled up to one spot planning to chunk a live bait out and sip a beer while I waited for the tide to get right.
Well, apparently it was already right. The cork hit the water and didn’t even settle in before it was being towed by a Redfish. I boated that first fish and decided to forego the beverage and get another bait out there. The second cast resulted in a hook up with another Redfish around 25 inches and while I was battling that fish I saw another one push near the shells. I put the rod in the rod holder and tossed another bait ahead of the push and BAM! I ended up losing the first fish while trying to go back and forth between the two.
Looking back it wasn’t a very smart idea. The fish were there and would happily wait for me to get right back with them. The one smart thing I did was to pinch the barbs down on the hooks. That is probably why I lost the other fish and I’m glad I did instead of exhausting the fish with an extended fight just so I could be greedy.
I caught one more fish before I remembered that I was pre-fishing for a tournament and I left in hopes that the fish will stay for a few more days. I suspect they will as this has always been a good Redfish spot that has bailed me out on many a trip.
Tomorrow I will have my celebrity anglers, Jimmy Jacobs and Polly Dean (outdoor writers / photographers), on the boat for a practice day. We’ll be exploring some new spots and checking a few old ones as well.
Today was a good example of what happens when you let spots rest for a while. I was just having this conversation with my friend and fellow guide Capt. Scott Owens a couple of days ago. When you find a good school of fish it just isn’t a good idea to keep going back to the well over and over. Eventually it will go dry. Let that spot rest, find some new fish, and come back to it if times get hard. I hadn’t been to this spot in months, but it looks like it is going to produce at just the right time. Now if we can just find some Trout to complete our slams in the tournament!
Life is good!
Capt. TJ Cheek