On Monday and Tuesday, I fished with Will Benson.
We left early from parts far away, and within 20 minutes of leaving the dock we found some small tarpon to play with. I jumped one, had another bite, and as the sun crept higher we elected to leave the pons for some permit.
Our first stop gave up a shot at a large tailing fish, and though we turned the fish towards us we were unable to seal the deal. A dry spell followed, but at our next two stops we found them. In the course of an hour and a half, we had maybe a dozen shots at happy permit. We came close in many ways, but were unable to feed one. Perhaps our closest was a shot to a pair of tailing fish that landed a little long, and when I stripped it back I came tight briefly. Will and I both think I may have actually foul-hooked the fish for a second. At least I was getting it close. This was our last proper shot of the day, and though we continued to give it our best efforts the clouds moved in and the permit were nowhere to be found.
We started later and an hour by car from where we fished the day before, and left later. We found another group of tarpon, these larger than those we found yesterday, but while we threw into them a few times we were unable to get a bite.
Following this, we continued our permit quest. This led to a whole lot of nothing until later in the day, when we got another beautiful bunch of permit shots in a few hours. We had fish follow the fly, look at it, elevate on it, and still we were unable to get a bite. We changed flies three times, and when the clock ran out on our day we were left with no capture to show for our effort.
I’d like to add that while we didn’t capture one I learned a lot from Will, and we had a great time together on the water. It’s easy to have fun when the fishing’s good, but when it’s tough is when having a good time is arguably the most important.
Wednesday, after the referendum vote (if you’re not aware of this, check out the Key West Committee for Responsible Tourism on Facebook), I fish with Doug. It will either be a great and victorious day on the water or the beginning of another long battle. I’ll keep this page updated.
Saturday I leave for Belize, and I will be back the following Saturday. I will upload a report from there when I return.
More to come, please remember to vote NO on the study and wish our community luck as we take on the special interest group that wants to cut a hole.