Major Screw Up, Thought I was a Goner

FLCoyoteFLCoyote Posts: 271 Deckhand
Took my Wavewalk with recently installed Trolling Motor on a flats fishing trip last Sunday. Had to cross a shallow mud flat enroute to my planned fishing area. I knew it was really shallow but thought I could pick my way across. Ran aground about 300 yards from the mainland and 100 yards into the mud flat. It was stuck hard! I couldn't get the Kayak to move using the paddle as a push pole or with the trolling motor on high speed. I tried to reach around to change the angle on the trolling motor and the Kayak dipped hard and threw me out. Very fortunately I grabbed hold before the yak could blow out of reach. I was only in about six inches of water, but my legs were buried in soft mud over my knees and I couldn't get them out of the mud. I finally managed to pull myself using the yak as a lever to the front of the yak and positioned myself between the twin bows and rested my arms and my weight on the yak. After I calmed down I realized that I was standing in the middle of a mud flat several hundred yards from solid ground. Part of the problem is I'm 70 years old and have both knees replaced. After a long exhausting effort I managed to get the yak back into about 10 inches of water. I didn't want to try and get back into it as I was afraid I might capsize it and be in even more trouble so I laid down across the middle of the yak, head on one side and feet on the other and turned the trolling motor on low. It worked and I ran to a small island about 100 yards away. Wet and exhausted I just sat on the sand trying to recover when I realized my very new Sig Sauer 380 was no longer clipped to my waist. That was a real panic, fortunately when I looked in the yak I found the 380 and holster, unfortunately they were laying in salt water I took on during my misadventure. End of story is I proceeded back to my launch point without incident, got as much mud off myself and my equipment and headed for home. Took the 380 apart and soaked it in hot soapy water, then rinsed it with clean water, let it dry and lubed it very thoroughly. I really though I was going to die sinking into the mud. Other than feeling like a complete idiot as I have been on the water for at least 65 of my 70 years. I think my family and friends were right! I was crazy to be out by myself in a Kayak, especially in a remote location. My daughter is looking at buying a waterfront property on a local lake and if she does, she's going to get $2000 dollars worth of Kayak and equipment as a gift. I don't quite understand how the Kayak got stuck so solidly, unless its because the sharply shaped twin bows on the Wavewalk sucked down into the mud. I know how hard it was to get my legs out and the kayak seemed to be glued to the bottom. Oh well, I'll probably do more dumb stuff before I meet my maker.

FLCoyote

Replies

  • John McKroidJohn McKroid Posts: 1,684 Captain
    That is quite a story....glad you made it back ok, and that much wiser.
  • oarknotoarknot Posts: 243 Officer
    Whats the gun for? did a pelican snatch your sandwich?

    Glad you're ok, but id recommend taking a buddy... (they can either help you out of a jam, or take video of you in a jam. either way its a win)
  • Keep on SpoolinKeep on Spoolin Posts: 1,342 Officer
    I will not go without a buddy because I like to fish way back where no one else has been. I know it only takes that one slip up.
  • FLCoyoteFLCoyote Posts: 271 Deckhand
    oarknot, I fish in some remote areas and in 37 years of living and fishing in this area there have been three fisherman that were alone murdered at boat ramps. None of the cases have been solved. In one case the fisherman's SUV was driven into deep water and wasn't found for a week. His credit card was used about 30 miles away an estimated two hours after the murder. If I'm alone anyone that approaches me gets a don't get any closer please from me and if they keep coming, that's what the 380 is for. Also we had a solitary hunter apparently jumped from behind on the way back to his truck that was killed with his own shotgun and had his truck stolen. Lots of drug activity going on down these two trail roads. I figure that if I'm armed I might at least have a chance. The smart move would be not to be alone at remote launching area's. My wife and daughter were assaulted and robbed in Greenville, S.C. about 15 years ago and now if my wife doesn't know who's at the door she answers it with a .38 in her hand. Paranoid, maybe? What will you do hit them with your sandwich?
  • oarknotoarknot Posts: 243 Officer
    no, im usually packing too- i just dont wear it out on my hip like the wild west while *** deep on a mud flat at low tide.
  • mjrudd1mjrudd1 Posts: 267 Deckhand
    Glad you survived and didn't hurt anything but your feelings. You did well to get yourself back in OK. :Rockon

    Kudos on being preprared. The old scuba diving mantra of "have a problem on the bottom, fix it on the bottom" stays with me. I almost always go out alone but try to imagine whatever problems might arise and think through how I'd best deal with them, so if something does happen - I'm prepared and have solutions in mind already.
  • MateauMateau Posts: 267 Officer
    i carry on the water too. Ruger LCP. better to have it and not need it then need it and not have it. why roll the dice? i would have left maybe just a bit of poop in the mud before i climbed out. glad you didn't lose your pistola.
  • kayakerinkeywestkayakerinkeywest Posts: 441 Deckhand
    Don't give up on it. Stuff happens. Maybe work on your techniques a little more so you have the confidence in your equipment. Re-entry is a huge part of kayak fishing that I would say that the majority of people out there have not really practiced. With your knees, you might have to adjust your technique but definitely worth the time. If you can't get back in, then you shouldn't be out there. I am sure after a couple more outings with fish tugging your line, this will pass on to one of the funny things that happened.
    Youtube - KEY WEST KAYAK FISHING https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCkGY6yxE8kogYHKXisMhA2w
    All About The Bait Store - http://www.allaboutthebait.com/
  • PottymouthPottymouth Posts: 1,547 Officer
    Wow, thanks for sharing. Hopefully this will lead as a warning.
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  • FLCoyoteFLCoyote Posts: 271 Deckhand
    Oarknot, I usually carry concealed, however when alone I think a visible firearm is a deterrent in itself. Florida law allows open carry when fishing or hunting. I do take your point and won't have it on my hip after launching. I keep two waterproof/floating boxes on the yak for my wallet, keys, and from now on, my handgun. I sincerely do appreciate your comment and won't be a smartaSSSS and keep this going. I do think that if you are a mile down a dirt road with no one else around its a good idea to open carry.
    Its sad that bad things keep happening to campers, fishermen, hunters and boaters just because they are vulnerable. We recently had a FWC officer get shot five times on a routine boat check. He took three in the bulletproof vest and had two nick him. He ended up in the water emptied his clip at the bad guys and managed to reload and continue firing to run them off (in his boat). He did hit one of the bad guys in the hand and they were caught about four hours later. He had some pretty good training as they were trying to run him over with his own boat and he managed to stay on top and empty two clips from his Glock. By the way I had stabilizers for the yak, but my son broke one off during a recent borrow. I ordered the needed parts to replace yesterday and I ordered a set of removable wheels for my 10' Jon boat so I can roll it around to load and unload. One of the reasons I don't use the Jon more is that it weighs 111 pounds. I think the wheels will let me use the Jon and my 2 1/2 Suzuki four stroke more often.
  • cprcpr Posts: 9,301 Admiral
    Make sure you take the grips off your sig (if you can) there are springs in the grips that will rust in a day after being in salt. Then soak in with corrosion X. I've had to walk about 50 yards in mud once. I thought it would be a easy walk between the mangroves. I learned my lesson the hard way. Stay away from mud.

    BTW, I travel long distances in back roads before sun up to go kayaking and have a 380 with me for the drive. It goes in a dry box in my yak (zip locks don't work, that's how I know about the springs in the grip). It's much safer keeping it with me then leaving it in the truck.

    I kayak fish alone most of the time and love the peace. I do carry a PLB and a fully charged cell.
    "The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function." F. Scott Fitzgerald

    "Prediction is very difficult, especially if it's about the future." Niels Bohr
  • quatinquatin Posts: 595 Officer
    FLCoyote wrote: »
    Oarknot, I usually carry concealed, however when alone I think a visible firearm is a deterrent in itself. Florida law allows open carry when fishing or hunting. I do take your point and won't have it on my hip after launching. I keep two waterproof/floating boxes on the yak for my wallet, keys, and from now on, my handgun. I sincerely do appreciate your comment and won't be a smartaSSSS and keep this going. I do think that if you are a mile down a dirt road with no one else around its a good idea to open carry.
    Its sad that bad things keep happening to campers, fishermen, hunters and boaters just because they are vulnerable. We recently had a FWC officer get shot five times on a routine boat check. He took three in the bulletproof vest and had two nick him. He ended up in the water emptied his clip at the bad guys and managed to reload and continue firing to run them off (in his boat). He did hit one of the bad guys in the hand and they were caught about four hours later. He had some pretty good training as they were trying to run him over with his own boat and he managed to stay on top and empty two clips from his Glock. By the way I had stabilizers for the yak, but my son broke one off during a recent borrow. I ordered the needed parts to replace yesterday and I ordered a set of removable wheels for my 10' Jon boat so I can roll it around to load and unload. One of the reasons I don't use the Jon more is that it weighs 111 pounds. I think the wheels will let me use the Jon and my 2 1/2 Suzuki four stroke more often.

    I heard about that. They stopped a drug runner. I can see how it could be tough as FWC patrol. You're searching for hidden fish, but they're hiding cocaine.
  • crackedconchcrackedconch Posts: 373 Deckhand
    Glad to hear that you're ok. Don't let one bad incident deter you from kayaking in remote areas. I agree with others here, don't go alone. I do a lot of fishing alone, but if I know I'm going to a remote area, I have someone with me. And, I'm glad to hear that I'm not the only one carrying out there. Sometimes I have my 380 and sometimes I have my 40 (just depends on which one I grab first). I don't wear it while I'm on the yak, but it is in a waterproof box that is easily accessible.

    Mike
    Don't sweat the petty things and don't pet the sweaty things!!

    Pioneer 197 Sportfish
    Suzuki DF150
  • timmcollinstimmcollins Posts: 826 Officer
    The lesson to learned here:
    Leave the Sig home, when going on an saltwater adventure, get a $150 Cobra instead! LOL.
    Glad it worked out safely for you.
    "Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, martini in one hand, Cheeseburger in the other, body well used and worn out and screaming WOO-HOO What a Ride!"
  • RollinRollin Posts: 1,540 Captain
    You've lived a long time, so have I (I'm 71). I go alone sometimes and close calls are part of it, I won't quit. If that's how it ends so be it,I'm not interested in playing it safe.
  • jcanracerjcanracer Posts: 4,294 Moderator
    Heck of a story FLCoyote, glad you made it out of there in one piece.
    Hobie Kayak angler for life!
  • lucluc Posts: 245 Officer
    Good on you for figuring it out. I don't see a problem bringing a gun or relocating it.
    Do what you think is right and don't look back. I owned a kayak for 4 months and fished it 6 times. I helped 3 dudes from being in a bad place. 1 guy in chest deep water and mud in Hells Bay during the winter time(50 degree wind chill), he knew about the sharks, and crocs :) He was chattering cold, in for about a 30 mins before I showed up on my kayak with a bailer. He was working his way to a mangrove. And two guys flipped in Biscayne bay, separate times. Can't do much about Mud and bad knees except watch the tide and make sure one of those 38 rounds work. FOR A SIGNAL SOUND, NOT MERCY SHOT
    I stopped kayaking because I didn't like sitting down to fish, not for fear of flipping, however I rehearsed it.
  • FLCoyoteFLCoyote Posts: 271 Deckhand
    Luc, I started out with a 12 foot native sit on top about 18 months ago. Everything worked great except I couldn't get out of it without help because of my knees. I sold it and bought the Wavewalk, its supposed to be very stable, but it just ain't so, its hard to capsize but is very tippy, also with high sides it doesn't handle well in the wind and its a sit inside and on several occasions I've taken water over the stern and nearly swamped. I'm just not Kayak material and do much better in a 10 foot, extra wide Jon boat with a 2 1/2 Suzuki. The videos for wavewalk are wonderful and it probably is for the right kind of conditions. I figure I'm down to my last 10 years anyway and think fate is trying to tell me something. I've had more close calls in the past 18 months of kayaking than I had in the past 32 years of fishing up to 50 miles out in the gulf and in the local bays. I'll just get my exercise walking and will quit trying to convince myself that rowing a yak is the thing for me. Thank You for Your Comments. FLCoyote
  • timmcollinstimmcollins Posts: 826 Officer
    Rollin wrote: »
    You've lived a long time, so have I (I'm 71). I go alone sometimes and close calls are part of it, I won't quit. If that's how it ends so be it,I'm not interested in playing it safe.

    I love that attitude! I hope to be like Rollin when I grow up.
    "Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, martini in one hand, Cheeseburger in the other, body well used and worn out and screaming WOO-HOO What a Ride!"
  • Reel MullarkeyReel Mullarkey Posts: 1,837 Captain
    A lot of people don't realize how dangerous that mud can be. As a kid I tried to free a friends John Boat from a mud flat and wound up waist deep in the mud. It was like a suction cup. Lucky we were young and able to get me back in the boat.
    Be careful out there, especially in a kayak.
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  • Granite ManGranite Man Posts: 23 Greenhorn
    Thanks for sharing, sir! It's good for people to hear the misfortune of others so we can learn. I will now beware of mud!

    I've had a couple of close calls offshore before. Never knew "Hitting the wall" was a real thing? Always thought it was just some excuse that runners used when they're too much of a quivering **** to finish a marathon. I was 5 miles off the beach in my yak when I learned how real the wall is! Lol, lesson learned.

    Also didn't know how badly I get seasick until I decided to go out for my first time in 5' swells and almost crapped myself a mile off the mouth of a pass. Almost left $3500 worth of gear on the side of the road in Houston to find a toilet or risk doing poop in public. Freak good luck, I was parked right next to a toilet!

    And I carry in the yak too. G19, carry it everywhere. It's in my waistband as we speak.

    Too all you 70+ old dudes still raging, you're hardcore and I hope I'm that awesome at that age if I live that long?!
  • crackedconchcrackedconch Posts: 373 Deckhand
    Too all you 70+ old dudes still raging, you're hardcore and I hope I'm that awesome at that age if I live that long?!
    :hail
    Don't sweat the petty things and don't pet the sweaty things!!

    Pioneer 197 Sportfish
    Suzuki DF150
  • bluewatermafiabluewatermafia Posts: 540 Officer
    Don't sweat it, chalk it up to a lesson learned and keep on trucking!
    I'm still a whipper snapper (25) but when I was 19 I went yak fishing with a buddy of mine for the first time. Got caught in a mud flat on a falling tide and had to get out and push the yak across knee/thigh deep mud about 75yards. I thought it was gunna kill me too!
  • WadeFishermanWadeFisherman Posts: 437 Deckhand
    Any reports of people dying in the mud? I have sunk a few times to my waste, and luckily had something to grab. Also, thanks for sharing gun stories. So many times, it happens when u least expect it. So sad those cases arent solved.
  • lucluc Posts: 245 Officer
    Jack Sparrow would hook into a bull red to help pull him out.
  • Granite ManGranite Man Posts: 23 Greenhorn
    luc wrote: »
    Jack Sparrow would hook into a bull red to help pull him out.

    :rotflmao
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