Dead Gator

Had an awesome hunt Tuesday night. Action packed from start to finish.

Within just a couple minutes of coming off plane in the area we planned to hunt, Alicia and I spotted two really good gators. The bigger of the two went under, while an 11 footer cruised east/west at around 70 yards allowing me a good casting opportunity with the snatch hook. Made a good cast and we were hooked up. Fought it for a solid 15 minutes putting good pressure on him the entire time. In hindsight, I really should have had Alicia get another snatch hook in it, but had her ready the harpoon instead. I was making good headway on the gator, and just as we anticipated the gator to 'pop' the surface, a claw tangled around the line and it was over. Another two feet and Alicia would have had a dart in him. Big bummer for sure, but what a rush.....

We hung around for a while but never did see another good one in range around that area. Decided to start our slow hunting and get the lights rigged up for the evening. We eased along and saw several 6-7 footers that don't make the grade. Then around 9PM Alicia locks the light onto a good set of eyes and we can tell immediately it's a decent one. We kill the outboard and slip the trolling motor into the water to start the stalk. We tailed the gator around some bends and curves for around 10 minutes or so when it finally offered me an opportunity for a cast at 50 yards out. Made a solid cast and we were hooked up.

Then the Chinese fire drill began. In my opinion, gator hunting is ideal with a 3 man crew. One person to get the initial hook in him, a second person to get another snatch hook in it, and a third person waiting with the crossbow/harpoon. Since it was just Alicia and I, I focused on getting the gator to surface with the single snatch hook while she got the crossbow ready for a shot. We had to maneuver around several blow downs and obstacles, but when the gator finally popped Alicia made an incredible shot putting the bolt right into the eye. Not ideal shot placement to aim for the head, but at 3 feet away it did the trick. The gator didn't really offer a great shot opportunity and she did the best she could to ensure we got another line in him. And what a shot it was.

The battle ended shortly thereafter with a .44 mag detonated just below the water that almost blew out my eardrum. Lots of little "mistakes" like that along the way as we dust the rust off from taking a hiatus last year, but it'll all come together by season's end as we have another 5 tags to fill.


We hunted our way back out and snatched another one around 8 foot that we could have taken, but with only one tag left for this area we decided to let it go and hold out for a trophy.


Really fun hunt and will be back at it this week to try and fill our 2nd Gadsden Co. tag.



Just shy of 9 ft.

faba5de11b1a7d005710952033b6f16f.jpg


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
They Can't Us "You Should Have Been There Yesterday"...........Because We Were!

Replies

  • LiveLineLiveLine Wakulla County, FloridaPosts: 1,456 Officer
    Nice....glad to see you back posting. Great looking kid
  • SloughSlough S.w. Ga./ St. JamesPosts: 4,074 Captain
    :beer Great lookin family
    I didn't say it was your fault, I said I was blaming you
  • micci_manmicci_man Somewhere in FLPosts: 12,027 AG
    I agree with both above. Congrats all the way around :beer
    Common Sense can't be bought, taught or gifted, yet it is one of the few things in life that is free, and most refuse to even attempt to possess it. - Miguel Cervantes
  • illinoisfishermanillinoisfisherman Posts: 5,094 Admiral
    :thumbsup
  • tk's joytk's joy Posts: 2,490 Officer
    All of the above! Good job.

    tk
  • brotherinlawbrotherinlaw Posts: 2,770 Captain
    Good deal
  • CranfieldCranfield Posts: 1,284 Officer
    What a great hunt and a nice picture, that lad looks a sthough he will be quite a handful one day.
    I never met a girl I could have taken alligator hunting, most wouldn't even handle my ferrets.
  • skyway andeskyway ande Posts: 2,819 Captain
    That's an intense report! Congratulations!
    God, save the South!
  • jcbcpajcbcpa Posts: 1,424 Officer
    Wow. Great report. Beautiful family.

    Sent from my P00I using Tapatalk
    I can't give you a sure-fire formula for success, but I can give you a formula for failure: try to please everybody all the time.
    Herbert Bayard Swope
    US editor & journalist (1882 - 1958)
  • FamilyfisherFamilyfisher Posts: 2,584 Captain
    Sounds like fun. Glad to see your family too.
    Proverbs 13:3
  • trout069trout069 Posts: 4,181 Captain
    Congrats on getting one! It is a smooth operation with 3.good on the 2 of y'all getting it done.
  • PineywoodsPineywoods Posts: 104 Deckhand
    Congrats nice gator. That young one is growing like a weed
  • stanwillstanwill Posts: 377 Deckhand
    Good job, Justin and Alicia. On the hunt and showing the young'en how its done. :)
    Just an old ,fat man that likes to fish
  • bowhunter4lifebowhunter4life Posts: 915 Officer
    Congrats! Nice family picture also.
  • KayakMacGyverKayakMacGyver Posts: 983 Officer
    Thanks all for the comments. I'm lucky to get to enjoy so much with Alicia and can't wait for Wyatt to join in the fun.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    They Can't Us "You Should Have Been There Yesterday"...........Because We Were!
  • FS ShelbyFS Shelby Posts: 686 Officer
    Great report, thanks for sharing with the FS forum community!

    You will now be entered in our forum giveaway! Keep posting new reports until September 31st for more chances to win the fishing trip of a lifetime with Fishing Nosara in Costa Rica!

    Check out http://www.floridasportsman.com/2017/06/12/win-costa-rica-fishing-adventure/ for more details.
  • plumbbobplumbbob Posts: 781 Officer
    I haven't seen you in a while. You guys make a beautiful family.
  • hooknredshooknreds Posts: 2,461 Captain
    Very nice!
  • seabiscuitseabiscuit Posts: 995 Officer
    Well done and great looking family! Heard that gator meat is tasty!

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