a taste of the flats, what a tease! [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: a taste of the flats, what a tease!


mikez
08-05-2007, 07:31 PM
I went on a fool's errand chasing rumors of hardtails in south county RI today.
Managed to harvest the proverbial "shoulda been here last weekend" plus one industrial strength sun burn. :roll: What was I thinking???

After standing on the tip of the jetty for way too many hours without seeing a thing, I finally bagged it.
On my way back off the jetty, mid day, bright sun, 10,000 people around, I spotted a good sized bass cruising in and out of swimmers' legs in a foot of water. I stopped to watch for awhile and he occasionally drifted over close to the jetty. I noticed there weren't actually any swimmers within say 50 feet of the rock I was standing on.
Now I've seen this happen on many occasions in the past. Normally I'm too focused on tunoids to bother with any bass under 40 inches. Also normally I'm too considerate of the swimmers to throw a hook near their legs.

[As an aside, for all the years I've been chasing stripers on the fly, I've never actually bothered with the flats/sight fishing thing. Something about fishing for stripers in the daytime just seemed unnatural to me. Plus, between tidal rips and rocky whitewater, I've never lacked for numbers of bass when I wanted them. Lately however, I've had trouble finding them in my usual spots. Mean time I can't help reading all the exciting posts about flats fishing here and elsewhere. Not surprisingly, I have developed an interest is seeing what all the hubub was about.]

So anyway... here's this decent sized fish cruising boldly right in front of me after I've just been soundly skunked, plus that flats fishing thing in the back of my mind,... can you see where I'm going with this?
Yep, I couldn't resist. Although the water was about three feet deep and I had a surf candy on a sinking line, I tossed it in front of him. That's where I learned my first sight fishing tip - it helps to have a fly you can see in the water at a distance. since I accurately dropped it right in his path, and since he kept on the same course without showing and sign of seeing it, and since I couldn't see the fly, I didn't know what to do! I was put in mind of what John Gierach said about nymph fishing - "You've got to set the hook just before you feel the hit"
Well I guess I had a little Zen working for me as some subtle insignificant body movement triggered a subconscience reaction and I set the hook without exactly knowing why. I don't know who was more surprised, me or the fish! Once we both realized what the other was up to, it got interesting real fast. This was a 30 inch class fish and I had a 12 # tippet. I immediately started scrambling further out on the jetty hoping to drag him away from the swimmers. He immediately started running straight away from me pulling drag, right toward about 50 people swimming and surfing! Yikes!:eek: I finally clammped down, figuring it better to lose the fish than catch a person. Instead, he rolled on the surface no more ten feet from the nearest swimmer! I was expecting the lifeguard to blow her whistle but nobody seemed to notice.:confused: The leader held and I turned him and he swam out away from the people where I was able to land him. Caused quite a sensation with all the fishermen on the jetty because it seemed I had just caught the only fish in Rhode Island. Certainly the only one I saw caught all day. The funny thing was, no swimmers or anyone on the beach seemed to notice.
After that performance I figured I'd quit while I was ahead and rapped it up.
I drove the long ride back home with a grin totally out of proportion to the one lone fish caught. Now when I close my eyes, I see blond colored submarines cruising in knee deep water. Time to get some sleep!:cool:

flier
08-05-2007, 07:49 PM
Wow fun day. I can't imagine catching a fish that size in August near the shore, during the day.
Congrats on that hook set too.

I myself have not tried jetty with a fly rod yet. no guts :D

juro
08-06-2007, 12:49 AM
Now when I close my eyes, I see blond colored submarines cruising in knee deep water.

Welcome to the club Mike!

Now imagine a hundred such shots a day... for some, myself included it seems improper to cast *without* seeing a fish, and I wonder how the hell I ever catch a fish in all that empty water when I am just guessing they might be there. ;)

mikez
08-06-2007, 08:59 AM
Welcome to the club Mike!

Now imagine a hundred such shots a day... ;)

Yes, I think the bug has bit me. Very very satisfying to hook that fish. If I had hooked the same fish from the whitewater it would have been ho-hum. Instead I got quite a thrill out of it. That one fish did more than save me from a skunking - it turned a possible wasted day into a successful outing.

I think it's safe to say you Cape guys will soon be sharing your honey holes with one more convert.:wink:

Stevo
08-06-2007, 02:28 PM
Although the water was about three feet deep and I had a surf candy on a sinking line, I tossed it in front of him. That's where I learned my first sight fishing tip - it helps to have a fly you can see in the water at a distance. since I accurately dropped it right in his path, and since he kept on the same course without showing and sign of seeing it, and since I couldn't see the fly, I didn't know what to do!


And, your point is...
Welcome to the club! :chuckle:

Mike Oliver
08-07-2007, 07:33 AM
Yeh Stevo,

Good point. Does anyone?

I don't know why I visit this forum. It's a form of self punishement reading about the fishing these guys have on their door steps. We got 11 months to wait before we can get another short small taste. The motivation to get skunked on a regular basis over here is not strong any more. I doubt that I will do hardly any SWFF in the uk for the rest of this year. It's a bit like eating the stale crumbs that have fallen from the Cape Cod table.
Still I got "M" to look forward to in OCt and then it's S Ireland for surf fishing over Xmas so can't really grumble.
Hope the fall run in CC is as awesome as Juro is predicating.
Mikey.O

bonefishmon
08-12-2007, 05:02 AM
Mike. Now you're cursed. You'll be wanting *#+ with the lights on! LOL!

Phil

Mike Oliver
08-12-2007, 07:15 AM
Phil,

I would take which ever way it came at my age. Lights on or off outside or in.

I am actually going fishing Monday. Got a short notice invite last night to do a mix of fly and plug boat and wade all in the one day for the next two days. Allan Hughes my host actually managed to catch half a dozen Bass on Saturday in one hour and a half. That's good for us so he tempted me out of my despair. Right after posting this I start the hunt for gear still not properly sorted from the June CC trip. Yes I am a mess.
At least since being self employed I can go on this tempting little treat even though being self employed over here almost equates to being in the poverty zone. I love though not having to beg a Boss for time off. Sorry Guys enough of the self pity. I am fishing again!
Fall run is only just around the corner so get sharpening those hooks.
Mike

Warren
08-12-2007, 08:34 PM
At least since being self employed I can go on this tempting little treat even though being self employed over here almost equates to being in the poverty zone.


Mike you have made it to the Poverty Zone? Hell man your, rich!;) I 've been self employed for ten years or more & my boss still has not paid me:D

But some how I manage to find enough $$ to go fishing:hihi: :smokin:

Mike Oliver
08-15-2007, 09:21 AM
Warren,

You could make money explaining justy how you do that. I see it now the Warren Lectures.
My trip I mentioned was cut back to just one 14 hour day due to bad weather. We got 40 fish between us. Me all 6 to 10 inch Bass, Allan had a 7.5lb 5lb and 4.5 lb fish. His best day this year. It's why we cross the pond guys.