Tuesday, September 19, 2017

The Hurricane Blew In Some Good Fishing!

Now that every thing has settled down from hurricane Irma, I was able to get out on the water with Adam and Patty Garner this morning, meeting them up at the Dee Dee Bartels Park on the north end of the island. There were a few logs in the river as we ran, some docks  up in the marsh and a boat here and there washed up on a sandbar.

We made our first stop over in Bell River with plans to fish a flooding oyster bar on the last of an incoming tide. Both Patty and
Adam were tossing live shrimp under a float and although we had a bite or two, there were no takers.  We started to run around to the outside of Tiger but saw that we had a really good flood tide happening so we put the bow of the boat into some flooded grass flats look for tailing Reds. The first two spots were vacant but the third was the charm!  I saw a small tail popping up now and then so Adam and I got out of the boat and began to wade slowly to the fish. But as we inched closer we began to see more tails and BIGGER tails - a couple were some huge Redfish!  We tossed a
gold weedless Gator Lure spoon to a fish here and there, spooked a couple, but had a few excellent shots that they just didn't eat. After a while the water got too deep to see any fish so we continued on around to the outside of Tiger and went back to the float rigs.

Patty was the first to strike, and strike big she did! She  had a strong hookup and her drag began to rip, FISH ON! This fish was heading to Georgia! But Patty kept the pressure on as we turned and gave chase and after a good battle she subdued the fish and we boated a
big 4' Bonnethead Shark. And shortly after Patty caught her breath she had a another strong hookup. She was an old pro by now handily landed a Slot Sized 21" Redfish!

Adam had been filming and taking pictures and soon realized that he had better get on the ball! After we crossed over to Manatee Creek his rod heated up and he put a couple of hungry Seatrout in the boat then he too had a strong bite. Another big fish on! Adam played it expertly and worked the fish to the boat, landing another Slot 22" Redfish. We also picked up a smaller Red and a couple of smaller Mangrove Snapper.

Our last stop was up the Jolley River and although we didn't get many bites along the first bank we fished, we did see a wayward baby alligator (looking for a volunteer?) drifting down the river. We bounced across a creek mouth and found a "honey hole" of some Redfish. Adam pulled in 3-4 small but stout Reds out of one spot then Patty eased in with her cast and she too picked up a couple. Adam went further up the river and BOOM! Big Bite! Fish On! He played it patiently and put the third Slot Red in the boat, this one measuring at 25". The two tagged teamed a good handful of smaller Reds, sometimes getting double hookups, then we headed back to the ramp, counting it as another great day to be out on the water here at Amelia Island, Florida.

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