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What do you do with six dozen shrimp at 3:30 in the afternoon, when your friend cancels?

What do you do with six dozen shrimp at 3:30 in the afternoon, when your friend cancels with thirty minutes notice, because it “might” rain?  You go with it and my son, Brian felt bad for me flying solo, so he jumped on the boat.  I can’t start calling people, as my trips are very tidal dependent and waiting a half hour really throws me off and misses the bite.

We departed at the scheduled 4:00 departure time and took a brief stop at Marker 22, the one with five pilings that holds drag screamers……My first cast got slammed as soon as it hit the water.  I got him out into open water and was gaining on him and then he abruptly turned and ran back into the pilings and broke me off.  That is one way to get the adrenaline started.  Brian put baits in the same spot multiple times, without success.  We continued Westward and our next stop, my first cast again got slammed and I boated a Snook.  We continued and shortly thereafter Brian got slammed and after a good battle, he landed a 12 lb. Black Drum.  Shortly thereafter, Brian landed a Snook and I landed a second one.  Then the “might” rain, did rain, I don’t mean a misting or light rain, we were stuck in the middle of a torrential downpour, no visibility downpour, but we kept fishing.  It cleared but another deluge was on the way and I gave Brian the option…..yes, I ran him to the condo and by then it cleared again and I headed back out solo.  I stopped again at Marker 22 and got slammed twice by drag screamers, one of which was definitely a Triple Tail, as I saw him.  I continued West and I must have broken off about 6 humongous Snook before finally landing a smaller Snook.  When I was headed East again, in the channel near the new Roosevelt Bridge, I saw a few Tarpon and I grabbed the biggest shrimp I could find and put it on a jig head tossing right at them.  The current was dragging my boat pretty fast and while moving I got slammed, similar to having bottom but then the surface exploded and I got one jump out of an approximately 60 lb. Tarpon.  I was back in “time out” retying another leader and jig, which I had already done about a dozen times tonight.  You know it’s time to quit when all four of your rods have broken leaders and need to be retied, so I headed in at 10:00.

Fun night but I need to dry out, so much for our drought conditions the past month or so. 

Final Tally – 4 Snook, 1 Black Drum, 14 Snapper, 5 Catfish, and 1 Jumped Tarpon.


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