I just got back from fishing with Capt.Duane Baker, in Isla Morada, last week. In 5 days I boated one tarpon and jumped 3. This was all on the first day. The folowing days drew follows, but not even a nibble. Tough fishing, the usual 15 knot head wind combined with big puffy clouds overhead and in the foreground. "Tarpon, 3:00. 30' cast now!". I had a great time and can't wait to go back next year.
The fish I caught was about 50# and it jumped at least 6 times. I fought it hard and we had the leader in about 10 min. Duane knew this was the first one that I had caught and asked if I wanted a picture. I held it by the lower jaw and hoisted it out of the water. As he framed the picture, the fish floped out of my hand and slamed against the gunnel. We got it back in the boat, took the picture and revived the fish. It swam away strongly.
Back on the bow I thought I saw another tarpon about fifteen minutes later, but it was an 8' shark. "Probably looking for your buddy." Capt. Duane said as I looked down into the water and saw a dead tarpon on the bottom. My heart sank.
"I guesse I can't be too smug about catch and release."I said, and Duane pointed out that it was an accident. It was, but that seems to make it worse. When he asked if I wanted the picture, I could tell that he would just as soon leave the fish in the water. I felt odd about wanting a picture(how simple!), but it was such a happy moment.Well now I've got my picture. No more tarpon in the boat for me.
One cast can change your day...maybe your life.