Sunday, November 21, 2010

Trout-rageous Fish'n

Can you think of any better way to celebrate Thanksgiving than to plan a Amelia Island backcountry fishing trip to start the holiday week off?  Probably not, so that's what Fred Fishel and his wife have done the last couple of years.  Fred had arranged a fishing trip with me, scheduled for today, so we met at the south end boat ramp (Talbot Island) at 1pm and headed up the Nassau River.  Fred couldn't have picked a better day with clear, sunny skies and the highs expected to reach 75 and only light winds expected.  The tide was still going out, slated to hit bottom around 2:45p, but the oyster beds were exposed so we started out pitching our 1/4oz jigs tipped with live shrimp.  It didn't take long for Fred to get warmed up and he soon began to boat Seatrout and a few Redfish to go along with them.  It was amazing to see how these fish were biting - the trout would peck, peck, peck - almost like the aggravating "bait stealer" pinfish, but then they'd take a good gulp and on!  Although there wasn't a whole lot of size to them, they were fun to catch, and there was plenty of catch'n!  The Redfish were totally different:  they would attack the bait ferociously and put up a fight that made you think that this was a slot fish for sure, only to find out that it was a Rat just feeling it's oats!  We hit a few spots in Nassau then headed around to the mouth of Jackstaff  for more of the same, plenty of Trout with a few Redfish.  At one point we were catching small Trout with almost every cast and decided to move on to see if we could find more of the same, but larger.  With daylight running out, we headed over to Broward Island to fish the shoreline cluttered with tree limbs and stumps.  Between sightings of Osprey, we had a few bites and then had a 16" Sheepshead chase a jig/shrimp to the boat before finally taking the bite and the fight was on!  We netted the fish, admired it's chompers, then released him to be caught another day.  The sun was setting and a full moon was rising so we headed in, counting it as another great day to be out on the water!

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