On Monday and Tuesday, I fished the park with Joe Rodriguez. Our target was the 6 lb tippet tarpon record. For the second day we were joined by Aaron Snell.
We elected to leave later than dawn, as there was a fair amount of wind. It’s worth noting that “leaving late” in this case still meant waking up at 4:45, though our arrival in the park was a gentlemanly 9 AM.
Our first stop was a long one. For the first half hour, we pushed along a ditch looking for tarpon. We saw a couple, and had a single shot at a fish that may have been big enough, but never got the bite. In short order we were seeing many tripletail, suspended in the slow current, waiting to be captured. I’ve caught a few triple tail before, but it’s always been a quick thing; this was the first time I have actually properly fished a flat for them. I must say, it was a lot of fun, and a great way to pass the time while the tarpon continued to be absent.
In an hour and a half, we fed the fly to over 10 triple tail and caught perhaps 7, ranging in size from 4-8 pounds. Three of them were kept for dinner, and after we re-iced at the marina we were back on the hunt for our target species. This didn’t last long, as we quickly discovered that the tarpon were equally unhappy as they were before. We decided to look for some redfish, but our interest waned and we were headed in to the dock in short order.
We were joined by Aaron Snell, and left at the same time.
While we had discussed fishing for permit in Key West instead of continuing to beat our heads against the wall with the tarpon that weren’t around, we elected to don our helmets and get back after the 6. The math of one fish making it all worthwhile is a seductive idea.
We had one shot in the morning, and one in the afternoon, and while we did mess around with some triple tail and redfish we mostly stuck with the tarpon fishing, bad as it was. By 3 the clouds had moved in, and we were gone.
Monday and Tuesday with Bruce, reports to follow.