Monday, November 26, 2012

Specks, Schoolies, and a Long Paddle

It felt like an eternity.  The leaves gathered on my kayak for over a month as work and family priorities overshadowed my angling desires.  But as soon as my slate was clear, the familiar feelings of my Werner gliding through the water and fish putting that certain curvature in my rod ignited my senses.  

My immediate desire was to look for togs, but that mean four letter word kept me from venturing too far from shore.  North at 15-20 kts was just too brutal so speckled trout became the target.

I met up with Jack Daughtry from Maryland out on the Elizabeth River.  My first cast with a skitterwalk got two blow ups, but no hook up.  It was promising. Unfortunately, those were the only two blow ups I would get.  Being stubborn, I wasted a lot of time trying to make the topwater work as Jack was hookin' up left and right on MirrOlures.  I eventually gave in and switched.  We trolled around exploring new areas and getting reacquainted with old ones as well.  White, chartreuse, silver, and natural colors worked well.  All in all, Jack probably out fished me 2 to 1, maybe more, but it was nice to catch up with him and finally get back on the water.

My next outing came 24 hours later.  My little brother had been wanting to get on the water with me but our schedules never seemed to line up.  So I was super stoked when we finally had the chance.  I had described the lightline striper action to him many times, but for him to actually see it... was more than special.  

Charlie with a nice HRBT schoolie striper

After a little rockfish sashimi with Thanksgiving dinner we went out again on Friday morning.  This time in search of the not-so-schoolie stripers.  We met Kevin and Lee over on the Eastern Shore and went on a super long drift.  After dunking eels for almost 15 miles, Lee was the only one to hook up.

Lee's 32"er

It was a long day, but I'm sure it was better than shopping.