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Flat Out Fishing – Memorable Moments

Memorable
Moments
We all have a few great stories of things we’ve seen other do, or a truly
memorable moment on the water. I’d like to share a couple of my favorites with
you this month.I’d love to share yours
with our readers, so email them to me at the address below. Once I get a few
good ones, I’ll put them in a future column for all to enjoy.

Carpet?
I spend lots of time guiding my
clients for tarpon at night in the harbors on St. Thomas. One of the hazards
are the locals that live on their boats heading home about 10 pm after a
"few to many" at the local pub.

Last summer one of the dingy brigade was passing by just
as my client hooked a nice tarpon of about 50 lbs. In typical tarpon fashion it
came flying out of the water landing with a huge splash on the glassy water.
"Capt. one-to-many" in the dingy sees the big splash and throws his
motor in neutral and yells… "Hey… what are you throwing in the
water?" I yell back, we have a big tarpon on, please get out of our way!".

He yells back… "Carpet!, Why are you throwing
carpet in the harbor".

Just as I was about to give him a piece of my mind,(once I
stopped laughing) the tarpon jumped again, and the light bulb over his head came on. He yelled back… OK, and
motored off about 50 yds, killed his motor and decided to catch the show!

Every time I think about "Capt. one-to-many in his
dingy" I can’t help but laugh, especially when I see a carpet commercial
on TV.

Tarpon On A Popper
Last July while fly fishing with my 12 year old daughter
Rachel, I caught an 85" Tarpon on a 10 wt St. Croix fly rod and a popper.
It took about an hour to land the fish and it was a running battle that covered
nearly a mile.

I was fishing for 50 pounders not 175 pounders! It was
pure luck that I got the fish to the boat. It had every chance to break me off,
especially since I was using 16lb test tippet. The overall length of the tarpon
was 85 inches and the girth was 40 inches. The estimated weight was 175 pounds
based on the reliable formula (G2 x L / 800). Unfortunately there was no way to
handle the fish and take a photo when the only help I had was Rachel. She only
weighs 70 lbs and the fish was really strong. I had it up to the boat on the
leader about 6 times, and each time it looked at me as if to say, ”just try to
grab my jaw” and then it would tear off again.

If it weren’t for Rachel running the boat, I would have
never had a chance at this fish. She maneuvered the boat like an old pro, and
when we finally got the fish measured, I was one proud Dad. It is one of the
most memorable fishing experiences of my life and something I will never
forget. It was made even better by the fact that I was able to share it with my
daughter.

Be Careful Its Slippery
Why is it that warning someone that the boat ramp is slippery seems to
neutralize all of their active brain cells?
Every year I seem to have one client that is hell bent on proving that he/she
can walk on anything I can. On one occasion, after the obligatory “slippery”
warning, my client decided it was time to jump out of the boat to give me a
hand. What followed was some of the finest footwork you’ll ever see. It would
have made the Three Stooges green with envy if it weren’t for the trailer
tongue.Unfortunately in this case the
“nutcracker” had nothing to do with ballet, but it sure provided some side
splitting entertainment for a few lucky bystanders!

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