Ok started out the day at 6:45, catching white bait in the surf. Actually caught a needle fish and what looked like juvenile Bonefish too, which both got tossed back.
Paddled to the South side of POR trolling a glass minnow and a pogie along the way....nothing. Anchored up just outside the jetties and tossed out two white baits under a float. Had a couple of hits, but due to me throwing other lures, I missed them. Then I finally had one at didn't want to let go, it was a ladyfish. I thought I might get into a school of them, but I guess he was a loner. I moved to a couple different places around the jetties, but didn't catch anything else. Slow morning, but still better than work.
Went out again around noon trolling a gold spoon and a DOA baitbuster, this time I went North about a half mile trying to stay just outside the last sandbar. On the way back I caught a Hobie! We passed each other and I thought I was clear of him....he put up a short fight before tossing the hook! Not sure who he was but he said he had caught a couple of Spanish earlier.
After going inside for a little while, the kids were settled down, my wife was reading, and the Gulf was calling me again. I was given the all clear for one more trip, just had to be back by 6:30 for dinner.....no problem...
The plan was to catch some pinfish and do one slow drift from the POR back toward the condo. Well due to some technical difficulty(rusty sabiki rig, strong current that was too strong for the anchor) I finally got two large pins and a small one for back up just in case. By the time I ended up getting the baits out it was 6:15, plenty of time for a quick drift. Now I'll go ahead and tell you that based on the issues I had catching bait and getting them rigged, I should have called it quits and paddled in...but I'm stubborn.
I had one pinfish under a float and the other was free lining behind me. I paused a couple of times and threw a gold spoon...nothing, however on my last retrieve, my freelining pinfish was enhaled by a 5-6 foot TARPON..reel was screaming, tarpon was tail walking and it was my turn for revenge on Murphy! (please see day #2 post and Murphy's Law).
The Tarpon had hit on my Penn 550 with 300yds of 80lb power pro, 5ft 80lb leader, 7/0 hook, connected by a snap swivel with a polamar knot, the leader had a Rapala knot at the hook and a surgeons loop at the snap swivel.
And it was off to the races!! (Um don't forget I was supposed to be home by 6:30... the Tarpon hit at 6:27). After his first initial run I tightened down the drag and started to work him. or at least that is what I was telling myself. I learned real quick how to use the angle of the rod to change the direction of the kayak. He dragged me all over the place! What started at the northern most tip of the POR ended an hour and twenty minutes later in front of Turtle Beach and about a mile off the beach. He dragged me through POR back out to the small reef south of POR and then straight out. He only jumped three or four times, but did manage to wrap the second line I had out around my kayak twice. About 45 minutes into this fight I began to wonder who had caught who....I also realized I didn't test my drag when I got down here, so I was hesitant to tighten it down too much.
I was amazed at te late runs he made, just when I thought I had him beat, he took off again. This is also when I learned to lean to keep from being pulled out of my yak! I was trying to use my yak as resistance to make it more difficult for him, but I think it was more difficult for me! In trying to increase resistance I even threw my bait bucket out too!
For the last twenty minutes it turned into small battles until he finally gave in...I had a good hook set in the outside corner of his mouth, leader wasn't frayed and all the knots held..including the uni to uni I had in the braid I made last year(don't ask..long story). I was going to try and get a scale, but I didn't want to risk it and I'm not quite sure where to pull one from either. But what a beautiful prehistoric looking creature with a lot of fight! I pulled the hook out and watched him swim away!
Now it took me about 25 minutes to paddle back to the condo, the sun was setting and was a great way to end the day....now did I mention I was supposed to be back at 6:30 for dinner? It was now 8:10. Did you know that the Siesta Key Police Department has a non-emergency line? Yeah, apparently the lack of communication, not being able to see me, and not being home on time did NOT go over well...needless to say that is why this is labeled Day #3 and #4...hopefully there will be a #5!!!