Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Shark or Redfish?

Kevin and Katie Kriener were visiting Amelia Island, staying at the Ritz Carlton Amelia Island and scheduled a 1/2 day backcountry fishing trip on The Anglers Mark yesterday morning. We eased out of the Fernandina Harbor Marina at 7am and headed up river under overcast skies to stop just outside of Tiger Island to fish the flooding grass on an incoming tide with topwater lures.  The couple had only began casting few minutes when Kevin's lure was smashed and FISH ON!  He worked the big Trout to the boat expertly and we soon had our first fish of the day!  Katie joined in on the action by reeling in a feisty Redfish.  The tide was expected to flood the grass so we moved around behind Tiger and checked out a couple of areas, but we didn't see any Redfish tails the first couple of flats.  On our last stop we found what we were looking for, but they were Sheepshead tails!  Kevin and I eased over the side and waded to within casting distance but the Sheepshead were having nothing to do with our artificial baits!  Luckily, off in the distance, was a big 'ole Redfish tailing!  We waded carefully over and made our offering of bait, but this Redfish was on a mission and moved on.  Although we didn't have any hookups, it was a great day to experience this kind of fishing!  We saw Roseate Spoonbills, Storks, and Osprey behind the islands.  We then made a run up to Jolley River and as the tide turned and started out, the two anglers began to pick up Seatrout on live shrimp under floats.  Then Katie's rod bent and her float disappeared - she had a battle on her hands with the fish burrowing up in the grass to shake the hook, but Katie worked the feisty Redfish out and into the net for pictures and release.  A two foot Bonnethead Shark had been making passes at the boat and shortly after another float went under and the drag began to rip!  Shark ON?  Kevin fought the fish like a pro and worked him in.  The big fish fought back and pulled drag out but eventually Kevin subdued the fish and we netted a  24" Redfish!  What a catch!  We hit a few more spots, fishing with jig/shrimp combos, then headed in, counting it as another great day to be fishing Amelia Island waters!

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