Tarpon, the hard way...

I had a chance to do some Bean Point tarpon fishing again this year. I'd love to be in a nice big comfortable boat (and do when I get the opportunity) but going out there in a kayak has a few advantages. I'll let you know when I think of them. Actually, it is great fun doing the deal alone - catching bait, rigging, propulsion, anchoring, hooking, fighting, landing, videoing. Wears an old man (54) like me out and one day I know it will be beyond me, but for now I can't get enough. Wish the storm and new moon wouldn't have washed them out before my limited time was up. I live out of the country but next year, I'll sure try to be back for the fun and maybe we can skip the storm. Tried to keep the video to manageable length - hope you enjoy watching it. Good luck to those of you that get to chase them all summer.

[video=vimeo;172654233]

Replies

  • releasegearreleasegear Posts: 693 Officer
    Really Cool - How do the tarpon react to your kayak /you? do they spook ? stay calm ?
    bornoffshore-sig.jpg

    Mike Wilhite - Fisherman/President

    Born Offshore Gear
    www.bornoffshore.com

    'Performance Fishing Apparel'
  • mjrudd1mjrudd1 Posts: 267 Deckhand
    Really Cool - How do the tarpon react to your kayak /you? do they spook ? stay calm ?

    Sometimes they spook, sometimes speed up a little but often they just go on about their business. When the schools were up on the shallower flats, 10' or so, it was obvious they disliked the boats more than my kayak. In 15-20', they didn't pay me any mind at all. When the schools would crash the surface over deeper water, they didn't give a hoot that I was near.

    This was the first time I could watch my hooked fish (happened on 3 different hookups) stay in a school and just go where the others went. She didn't lead or follow, just mixed in. She was definitely having a hard time doing it because she'd come up and gulp air and then dive back down while the other fish didn't surface.
  • Marty McFlyMarty McFly Posts: 61 Greenhorn
    Awesome video! That's a heck of an accomplishment to go toe to toe with the boats out there and do so well.
  • ~~Mutt~~~~Mutt~~ Posts: 478 Deckhand
    If ya don't mind MJ... What pole ..reel ...line setup you using there?
  • mjrudd1mjrudd1 Posts: 267 Deckhand
    ~~Mutt~~ wrote: »
    If ya don't mind MJ... What pole ..reel ...line setup you using there?

    Very happy to help. UglyStick Bigwater Custom 7'0", Penn Spinfisher 6500SS, 65 lb braid, 50 & preferably 60 lb Seaguar Premier Fluoro leader, 39942np-bn 7/0 3x Mustad Demon hooks.

    I use a loop knot at the hook. I have made a change to the Albright Special for my line to leader by adding a simple overhand knot to each tag end, as close to the knot as I can - haven't had a slip since doing that.

    I like the rod because the upper hand grip extends way up toward the first guide, giving me lots of leverage and less fatigue. The reel has been awesome, + 2 years and yet to open it up. It gets wet often and holds up to the hype as being waterproof. (I also use a 20 year old 750SS on my backup rig, and it still catches tarpon with no issues.) Sometimes to get the bite, I have to lighten the leader to as little as 40 lb but I don't like to. I use 6/0 hooks also, and a few other brands but these did very well for me this year. They sure don't bend or break.
  • ~~Mutt~~~~Mutt~~ Posts: 478 Deckhand
    Hey..Thanks.. I was looking several days back at the 7' Bigwater Customs @ ****...Yours has different guides than what **** offers. Not sure why...They had medium ..medium light and heavy..but they all had 10 guides on the 7 ft'rs..

    What caught my eye was that yours has 7 guides including tip...and they all look to be glass eye.. All **** had was stainless.. Guess a trip to Bass Pro is in order..

    I have a couple 6500ss also.. Haven't let me down in quite a while. Tear them down and clean them up after every Tarpon run.

    Thinking about giving a Quantum Cabos a shot now.. Different crank ratio... Should handle pretty much inshore and offshore game.. Dunno though.. Going to eye up some more Youtubes on the reel before plunking down the coin for one..

    Gonna hit Honeymoon and Fred Howard Friday morn ...
  • RobNRobN Posts: 21 Greenhorn
    That is an awesome video and a great accomplishment - especially in a kayak. I have fished that area several times and your video brings back great memories - thanks for sharing.
  • mjrudd1mjrudd1 Posts: 267 Deckhand
    ~~Mutt~~ wrote: »
    Hey..Thanks.. I was looking several days back at the 7' Bigwater Customs @ ****...Yours has different guides than what **** offers. Not sure why...They had medium ..medium light and heavy..but they all had 10 guides on the 7 ft'rs..

    What caught my eye was that yours has 7 guides including tip...and they all look to be glass eye.. All **** had was stainless.. Guess a trip to Bass Pro is in order..

    I have a couple 6500ss also.. Haven't let me down in quite a while. Tear them down and clean them up after every Tarpon run.

    Thinking about giving a Quantum Cabos a shot now.. Different crank ratio... Should handle pretty much inshore and offshore game.. Dunno though.. Going to eye up some more Youtubes on the reel before plunking down the coin for one..

    Gonna hit Honeymoon and Fred Howard Friday morn ...

    Good luck on your upcoming trips. I bought the rod at BassPro a couple of years ago. Don't know the model for sure but I think it is Model #USCS1170H. (the rod is in Florida and I'm in Honduras.)

    I have 2 Cabos, an old 30 and a new 40 - I really each of them. The only complaint on the old Cabo is they discontinued some parts, like screws & washers, within a few years. The new one seems much more water resistant than the old one. I love the magnetic bails and super smooth gears.
  • mjrudd1mjrudd1 Posts: 267 Deckhand
    RobN wrote: »
    That is an awesome video and a great accomplishment - especially in a kayak. I have fished that area several times and your video brings back great memories - thanks for sharing.

    Thanks, glad you enjoyed it. Putting it all together is largely so I can relive it myself, now and in the future when it is beyond me.

    I want to add that part of the fun of fishing out there in the crowds is the camaraderie, between boats that know each other and strangers alike. I usually prefer a nice solitary, secluded place but out there most people are friendly and enjoy watching action of others if they are not hooked up themselves. Lot of whooping & hollering when a fish makes a great showing. Thanks to all that fish that unique time and show good sportsmanship. :applause
  • ~~Mutt~~~~Mutt~~ Posts: 478 Deckhand
    I think it is the USCS1170MH instead of H.. The H shows 10 guides
  • TarponatorTarponator Under a BridgePosts: 11,332 AG
    Congrats on your catches & thanks for sharing the video.
  • permit_mepermit_me Posts: 923 Officer
    Mike,
    Great work! You have it down my friend. You make it look easy...
    A lot of things have come together for you as we see here. Your demeanor, technique, gear, knots, drag pressure, etc...it pays off for sure to put the time in. And to get the videos of it is priceless. Thanks for sharing
    it does seem that the fish are mellow around the kayak for you when near landing and landing. That is nice when the fish are somewhat relaxed and not so stressed, as you see with one big girl you landed, (that clip is a gem itself). The fish we landed monday was calm for the entire landing, dehooking and reviving process.
    It is neat how you can see the fish sometimes stay in the school.
    I think i am taking a break here, been windy (yesterday beat up in west winds for 6 hrs to hook 1 fish, only to be broke off 5 min into it.) and hot, water was 91.0 when we started at 6 and 91.7 to 91.4 when we finished by 1:15. Air was 91 F. Never seen water so hot in gulf before. Boat has multiple issues need tending to (maybe I'll even have upgraded my boat by next year).
    Til next year...
  • ~~Mutt~~~~Mutt~~ Posts: 478 Deckhand
    mjrudd1 wrote: »
    Don't know the model for sure but I think it is Model #USCS1170H. .

    Thats it.. Finally found one for 57 bucks today.. Thanks MJ
    I decided to give an old Shimano Baitrunner 4500 a go ..Cleaned it up..grease'd the bearings and loaded 100 yds of Ohero 50 braid.. Dug into the bag and found the same Seaguar Premier Fluoro and 7/0 3x Mustad's ....you mention above.. left over from last season.

    The H I was looking at was tagged wrong.. It had a skinny tip..more for Kings and Mahi.. It was the MH instead........So saw one next to it with a more solid tip..and 7 guides like yours..... The rod that was pretty much competition for the Ugly was a Penn... But I had to go Ugh....
  • mjrudd1mjrudd1 Posts: 267 Deckhand
    permit_me wrote: »
    Mike,
    Great work! You have it down my friend. You make it look easy...
    A lot of things have come together for you as we see here. Your demeanor, technique, gear, knots, drag pressure, etc...it pays off for sure to put the time in. And to get the videos of it is priceless. Thanks for sharing
    it does seem that the fish are mellow around the kayak for you when near landing and landing. That is nice when the fish are somewhat relaxed and not so stressed, as you see with one big girl you landed, (that clip is a gem itself). The fish we landed monday was calm for the entire landing, dehooking and reviving process.
    It is neat how you can see the fish sometimes stay in the school.
    I think i am taking a break here, been windy (yesterday beat up in west winds for 6 hrs to hook 1 fish, only to be broke off 5 min into it.) and hot, water was 91.0 when we started at 6 and 91.7 to 91.4 when we finished by 1:15. Air was 91 F. Never seen water so hot in gulf before. Boat has multiple issues need tending to (maybe I'll even have upgraded my boat by next year).
    Til next year...

    Thanks Kevin, always learning and trying to do better. I missed video of a bunch of jumps for being too occupied to turn on the camera. As for the fish being calm near the yak, I think it is a mix of the boat being small and quiet and the fish being worn down.

    Look forward to fishing together again one day. I got a spare yak, might have to put you in it! Another friend with a boat did that with me once (but only once). Hope you get on them next time you go out.
  • permit_mepermit_me Posts: 923 Officer
    mjrudd1 wrote: »
    Thanks Kevin, always learning and trying to do better. I missed video of a bunch of jumps for being too occupied to turn on the camera. As for the fish being calm near the yak, I think it is a mix of the boat being small and quiet and the fish being worn down.

    Look forward to fishing together again one day. I got a spare yak, might have to put you in it! Another friend with a boat did that with me once (but only once). Hope you get on them next time you go out.

    I think I'll take you up on that. The other day we did well. My boy got 2 and I got 1, broke of on one after a long chase. jumped another and hook bent on run or maybe jump and came undone. Looked around and saw others jumping and fish and hooked up for the first time this season. There were too many 1 bite/ 1 fish days this year.
    Time to go get some big snook now.
Sign In or Register to comment.