Now trying to recapture the level of success on the second trip from the first trip (7 people – 200 fish) was going to be akin to winning the lottery twice. That’s just part of fishing. Those epic days are part of what keeps us going back…
Scott from IrishWaterDogs came from Jacksonville to pick me up and we made the sojourn from Clearwater to Titusville. We DID get lost along the way (Damn GPS bastards) but managed to get checked in by 3AM. We had a 5:30AM wake up in order to meet everyone at the put in by 6AM…or 6:30Am…or 7AM…but, stupid me forgot to get directions to the launch. The only place that would be open at that time of the morning and actually know how to get to Beacon 42 would be a bait shop….and they didn’t disappoint! We left that shop with a map and a sticker and before long; we had arrived at our destination.
Just about everyone else had launched when we arrived but were fishing close by. Chip was waiting for us and Javier was arriving just as we got our kayaks put together. Scott had brought along an Ocean Kayaks Prowler 13 for me to use. I wanted to try out another boat since I’ve never really fished from anything but my Malibu…and I have to say, it’s not a bad boat. A little tippy in the primary stability, but a much drier ride in sloppy conditions than mine is.
Everyone was paddling north. We stretched out in a line between the shore and a set of islands, looking for signs of fish. Chuck, Dee, and Vickie Sallee were supervising our efforts and telling us what to look for and where to cast…
We got into a gaggle of lady fish – Dee and Vickie would exclaim “HEY LADDDYY!!”, Jerry Lewis style at top volume and, before you knew it, everyone else was chiming in! I know that a lot of folks in the fishing world consider lady fish a trash fish but this cousin of the tarpon is a fun fish to catch!
Dee told a story on the radio show recently about having a charter, and as they were paddling back at the end of the day, both blades had broke off the paddle that the client was using and she had to tow the guy back into a 20 MPH headwind. Scott had brought a few “Donald Duck” kiddy paddles to give her to make sure that she was never short on paddles ever again….was pretty funny!
We hung out on a sand bar for a few minutes – the wind was blowing right in our faces so we were trying to stay close to shore and out of the wind. The plan was to fish the deeper flats along the edge of the shore line, jump out on the sand bars and fish the little “bowls” where the fish may be congregating. I switched from a DOA Shrimp to a Redfish Magic inline spinner with a root beer sparkle paddletail and a weedless worm hook. We were fishing some fairly shallow areas and the DOA kept picking up grass. When I was fishing a deeper flat (3-4 feet) I would use a suspending Mirrodine XL in silver. I paddled out to a deeper flat.
As I tossed the Mirrodine and reeled back with a steady retrieve, I could see fish in the clear water take a swipe at the lure and either miss it, or not get hooked up. It’s amazing to me that a fish doesn’t get hooked on the double treble hooks – I hook myself just getting it out of the box….and then BAM! Fish on! It was a sturdy sucker! After a great fight, I brought it to the kayak – 18 inch trout! It definitely thought it was much larger and was packed full of attitude.
Scott picked up a keeper trout too but no more fish for us the rest of the day. We paddled back to the put in to have a few beers and pack up our toys for the day. We made plans to meet up for dinner…I was planning on a shower and a nap.
Scott and I met Chip, The Clone and Javier at Dixie Crossroads which is a killer seafood restaurant in Titusville. While we were waiting for a table, we ran into Jean McElroy. She’s a great fisher chick out of Jupiter, FL. They had been kayak fishing a bit south of us at KARS Park and had about the same results as we did…funny the people that you run into at times, eh? Our meal there was FANTASTIC! I highly recommend that when you’re in Titusville to fish the Lagoon, have dinner at Dixie Crossroads!
We headed back to the hotel, looked at photos from the day, and passed out around 11pm. We had another day of fishing ahead of us and we were meeting up with Javier for breakfast at 5:00am.To Be Continued…
About the Author: Rob DeVore is a Pro Staff Member at Yakangler.com and an outdoor writer from the Tampa Bay area. He writes for various fishing publications and is the host of The Late Show on the Kayak Fishing Radio Network. Rob also is the author of ABadBackcast.com