SkunkApe and crew of the Johnnie B got that tog-bug gnawing at me again with some great cold water reports. Only thing is, if you're looking for tog bait this time of year, you might as well be up the proverbial creek with a turd for a paddle. Ever since the commercial crabbing season closed, even the Asian Supermarkets were out. Lucky for me, Skunk was willing to part with some of his lucky crustaceans for a tog print.
For how cold the water was (~45 degrees) I found a pretty decent tog bite. It was soft and quick so I had a few swings n' misses, but after making the mental adjustment I landed 6 (16.5", 17", 17", 20", 21.5" and 21.5").
If only I could find a way to get more crabs...
After 8 hours of absolute solitude on the water, I decided to join Jack Daughtry in search of kow stripers. It was a perfectly calm night when my clicker scream broke the silence. I quickly brought the beast to the surface but as soon as I turned on my headlamp to take a look at it, it went berserk. It was definitely bigger than I thought it was going to be. My drag was set tight as it started thrashing violently, banging it's massive head on my gunwale and spraying water everywhere. Once the head got back under it peeled line while spinning me in circles. After pressuring him back within arms length of the leader, all of a sudden, it went slack. I pointed my light and watched the full length of the fish slowly fade away into the darkness... as a cacophonous "NOOOO!!!" reverberated from my chest. Listening to my voice echoing in the cold still air, I reeled in my empty hook, knowing that was easily the citation I was hoping for.
After several choice words grumbled through the steam from my mouth, fear of that scenario replaying in my sleep set in. I whispered "c'mon please" a gazillion times waiting for my next hit, but I was only tormented by short strikes. Jack's line came tight next and I was excited for him.
It was his new personal best at 41".
Not too long after, zippzipp was followed by his Visipole moving abnormally fast. And about 10 seconds later, my clicker goes off too. Line comes tight and shizam... sleigh ride.
44" by the last little fibers of the tail. Paper two, check.
I didn't stay very long after that, knowing my work load the next morning was going to be tough. But Jack stayed and got into a few more. 37", 39" and one monster that refused to be measured before peacin' out.
What an awesome freakin' day.
Can I get a "yeah!"?