Charles Levi Jr (CL): Good, just chillin at the shop.
(YA): What is your real job?
(CL): I am a tackle store manager in Port Canaveral FL called Handler Fishing Supply and part time kayak guide.
(YA): Do you guys sell online?
(CL): We sell rod building supplies and such but we will soon have a tackle store online as well.
(YA): How can people hire you as a guide? Can they reach you through YakAngler.com?
(YA): How did you land Emotion kayaks and YETI coolers as sponsors?
(CL): I met with the guys from YETI at iCast last year with a friend of mine Capt. Eric Chiocher who got me on the team, and as for Emotion I met Tom from Emotion at iCast as well and I sent him an e-mail listing the things I am involved in and he put me on the team as well.
(YA): Cool, I should have gone to iCast this year…. Dang Southwest blackouts!
(YA): I know you make your own rods, how long have you been doing that?
(CL): About five years or so.
(YA): Do you strictly use your custom rods now?
(CL): Yes, I do.
(YA): Cool, do you have a favorite blank?
(CL): Not really a favorite blank but a favorite weight and size I like to use a 7' 6-12lb class rod.
(YA): I'm cheap I like ugly stick blanks.
(CL): There not bad I have built rods with everything from G-Loomis to shakari and I like both brands.
(YA): Do you make rods for customers?
(CL): No, the owner of my shop does everything from river rods to marlin rods.
(YA): Are you a tournament angler?
(CL): I have fished in a few small local kayak tournaments as well as offshore tournaments but next year I plan to fish as many as I can!
(YA): Do you prefer fishing the mosquito lagoon or offshore?
(CL): Wow that is a tough one there is no place on Earth like the Mosquito Lagoon. Where else can you go to see schools of redfish and the launch towers of NASA. But... The Sunrise in the morning out on the ocean and the sound of a screaming drag is always cool.
(YA): Awww yeah give me a 40lb drag melting reel busting king any day!
(CL): Dolphin and Wahoo are my thing.
(YA): Never caught a Wahoo, it's a species that is on my bucket list.... Do you have any species on your list?
(CL): Oh yeah, Halibut, Roosterfish, Blue Marlin, Black Marlin, and Pacific Sailfish.
(YA): Any interesting stories while kayak fishing?
(CL): I was fishing at a spot I used to hit when I was a kid and while paddling across the river from the west side to the east shoreline when I stopped to grab a drink and felt a bump under the kayak... well I was in about ten feet or so of water so my mind started to wonder thinking "what could this be". First thing that popped into my head was a bull shark. I had caught a few of them from that area before so it wasn't out of the question. Then I thought Manatee there are a ton of them around here and it seems that manatees like kayaks. But the one thing I didn't think about was a dolphin. And sure enough that what it was.
(YA): They were messing with you. Adam and I will be fishing with you next month what do you have in store for us?
(CL): I plan to take you guys to the mosquito lagoon and hopefully get Adam his first Redfish and then look for some Black Drum.
(YA): If you could only fish for one species of fish what would that be?
(YA): Why what makes them so special to you?
(CL): It's allot like hunting, and there bulldog tough there are few things on this planet as awesome as a tailing redfish as the sun just starts to break the horizon.
(YA): Keys to fishing for Redfish successfully?
(CL): Slow down and see what is going on around you! The guys that get out there and just cast are the ones that miss the schools. I might only cast a dozen or two times in a day of fishing.
(YA): Wow totally different than bass fishing.... I probably cast over 400 times in a day! Do you typically pole or paddle when hunting reds?
(CL): Yep you really need to slow down because remember you might only be in a foot or so of water so if you get out there and just blind cast you could cast in the middle of a school and spook them.
(YA): Good advice, do you typically pole or paddle when hunting reds?
(CL): I like to do a little of both, first thing in the morning I paddle but when the sun comes up I like to stand to see better.
(YA): Lures or bait when fishing for reds?
(YA): If I wanted to fish for redfish what lures should I stop and get before heading out?
(CL): I would send you out with four inch paddle tail style bait I like root beer and gold flake and have you rig it on a 1/16 oz jig head for slot size fish.
(YA): I used to use a popping cork rig on the west coast of Florida do you use those?
(CL): Not much here. I fell the water is to clear for that.
(YA): So how did you get involved with YakAngler?
(CL): I found the site while looking for a Kayaking site to call home and boy am I glad I did.
(YA): Ok I almost forgot this one... Is there a specific item in your kayak that most people wouldn't think to bring with them?
(CL): Not that I can think of... I am a keep it simple kind of guy!
(YA): Thanks for hanging with us for an hour or so tonight Chuck.
(CL): No problem take care.