Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Well the "Big Tournies" are over Fall N Tide 6 was another interesting day on the water. A day of great prayer, weeping, and gnashing of teeth! We started out with an auspicious beginning. We were the first to arrive at our targeted fishing location, and shortly after our arrival nibbles, and bait present told us our plan was sound. Shortly after daylight my fishing partner began to land good sized trout in the 2lb plus range. But I just couldn't get the hits. As we continued to work on getting a trout (in my case) or improving size (in his) we found ourselves joined by more and more kayakers but fortunately they all moved on and did not crowd us out. The next event of the morning was a large number of "bass tournament" boats humming by at about 60mph. Generally not a problem except for the guy who didn't see us and almost crashed when he was surprized by our presence a mere 50ft away. I'm sure most kayakers thought, "crazy motorboats" and the guys in the bass boats were thinking "crazy kayakers" or some such version using more colorful language. Finally I started getting hits but still no hookups on my topwater. It was madenning both of my fishing buddies had trout over 20 inches and I had none. Massive hit after massive hit on my topwater with no reward. Along the way I had to cut about 30 ft of line off as I went through misshap after misshap. It was starting to feel a bit biblical when I finally told them to leave me behind and go get their redfish. At last I landed a 17" trout and shortly thereafter a 25" red that had my heart racing as I thought I had a 26" trout on the line. But with these two fish I knew a flounder would put me "in the money" so off I went to a place where two of us had caught 4 flounder the day before in a matter of hours. As we traveled the winds came up and the tide was much lower than before, all the places we caught flounder before were devoid of fish. Once again the reds were everywhere but everything I caught was smaller than my 25.5 inch red from the morning. Finally I caught a flounder that was exactly 12" long the needed length. But as I went to put him in the new cooler bag I got tangled up with the velcro and over the side he went. Now the gnashing of teeth. The water was turning to chocolate, the winds were picking up, and for the second time in 3 years I dropped a multi-hundred dollar flounder over the side. Demoralizing. I spent the next hour trying to upgrade my red to no success. I could have caught over 20 reds that day but they were all short of my goal. Finally I decided not to let a tournament ruin a good day of fishing, I packed it up, and headed back to the launch to go and run the weigh in at Fall N Tide 6. It was a great tourney many anglers had the best days of their fishing careers, many had the worst, all had the satisfaction of competing against one another and God's creation. Can't wait for the next event where I won't be in charge and I'll focus on catching 5 trout and one flounder - this flounder is going in the bag no matter what! Thank you Lord for the ability to enjoy your creation and the opportunity to grow through struggles.

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