Sunday, December 29, 2013

12.29.13 One schoolie shy of a dozen......


     Alright, I officially quit trying to figure these stripers out. Yes, I know it's winter and our "resident" non-migratory schoolie to keeper sized bass are around. They're in one day and not the next. Catch one one day and ...... 11 the next. Eleven. Yep, got eleven today in what started out as a fly fishing joke of a  trip.

      Started in the dark and after a few casts on the outgoing, with a little bigger surf, I had the worst tangle that I've had in a while. It was the tangler where there's not enough sinking line out of the rod tip and when you cast the line comes from in between the guides and just wraps everything. It was so bad I had to go to the street to see under a light and work to get in free. Then I go back down and walk in, into the trough. I fall back on my ass and take the next wave - believe it or not the StormR jacket kept me dry, although I'm sure I looked like an idiot.

     Figuring this spot had the maloik on me I jumped in my truck and took a drive. I started out on the beach and fumbled just as much as I did before. I was ready to quit before I hurt myself. I took a break standing there in the dark and gathered myself. I jumped up and the rocks and made some nice easy casts and slow retrieves into the pocket. After I caught one I felt better and got into a better groove.

     Then I caught another, and missed a few, and caught another, and another. The timing was perfect as the current was perfect with a SE swell that brought the waves up the beach and around in the southside pockets. Just when I thought it couldn't get any better it did. I had jumped up on the rocks and saw a fish break in the wash. I jumped down on the beach, made a quartering cast across the trough, and landed a nice 24" bass.

     As I released it and out of the corner of my eye I saw two spin anglers approaching the beach. They couldn't see me so I jumped back up on the rocks and returned to my original perch. That scared them off at least for a little while. I had tied on a simple black fly topped with the correct sized Pulse Disc and stayed with it through the outing. At one point I looked up and saw fish breaking on the tip of the north side of the groin.

    I made my way out and after two casts I had landed another and the fish kept showing. After being joined by a friend who landed his own handful using a ultralight spinning rod the other two anglers saw the action and came out and pretty much mugged me. I caught a few more under their noses while they went blank.

    I fished for about three hours landing eleven and missing the same amount. The water was just off color, lots of white water, cloud cover overhead, and a great 42 degree air temps. Can't beat it for the end of December, but that's going to change tonight.

     While on the beach I tried again to get a cool underwater release shot. I readied the fish in my one hand, camera in the other, and as I depressed the button the fish swam away. What I was left with was an image of water with what looks like a few faces from the famous Edvard Munch paining "The Scream".