Occasionally you get one of those mornings where everything works out perfect; I myself have never experienced one of these and this morning proved no different. Running late as always we got to the ramp with about 2 hours of tide left, which is all we needed. The south breeze was a bit stiffer than predicted, but isn’t it always? After a short run back in the marsh, the oyster bars and muddy banks signaled time to lift the motor and unclip the pole. Working into the outgoing tide we pushed further and further back to find waking fish crashing shorelines sending bait soaring in every direction. The first shots we were greeted with were sudden back casts that redfish retreated from with the middle fin showing. After a short time watching fish just out of casting range we finally found a happy customer slowly creeping towards the skiff. My first cast landed just past the fish and after two long strips the fly settled perfectly in the strike zone. The fish studied the fly for a brief moment and as I gave it a short strip he quickly made up his mind this would be his next meal. I watched as his gills flared and the fly disappeared; I immediately strip set and watched the water erupt as the fish ran straight from the boat. After a brief battle I had this bronze beauty in hand only to release him for the next angler to enjoy.
This time of year we are in a transitional stage. As the water temperature decreases our flood tide fishing tapers off. Not to worry though as the marsh is just starting to pick up for wintertime low tides. I have had some of my best days poling through feeder creeks in the fall during the last hours of the falling tide. As the water temperature continues to drop the water clarity increases making way for some of the best sight fishing opportunities the Northeast Florida marshes have to offer.
Congratulations to Royal Hendrix for catching his first redfish on fly. This healthy fish was pulled out of a 4 fish group harassing bait on a shoreline. These fish are certainly beginning to show that winter time behavior and grouping up in the creeks.
Thanks for reading and best of luck on your next adventure. Be sure to stop by the shop for fly selection and fishing info.
Tight Lines, Austin Bacon