We survived the Hardcore Clave! Day One
And it was brutal! Friday morning we were attacked mercilessly by starving albies and all we had to ward them off were thin graphite rods. Luckily the men [and boy] were equal to the task and we prevailed. It's a good thing we did too, it's a scary thing to see so many aggressive albies and so few fishermen. It would have been down right lonely out there if not for the few fishermen with Iron Will and Endless Fortitude who sacrificed their comfort to join the fray.
A colorful lot we were too.
Slinger announced his arrival by asking "What's so hardcore about this?" as he hooked another albie. I couldn't figure out why he was using that huge bobber on his flyline until I realized he was using the albie to try and tow a lobster pot out of his way.
Sean was an albie catching machine who hooked too many and consequently suffered equipment failure. You have to understand that he hasn't been flyfishing for very long so he didn't know enough to let his reel cool off between fish. I'm sure he learned a valuable lesson.
Nine year old Matthew was not impressed by the old men winching in their little albies on those big heavy flyrods so he broke out the light spin rod and and demonstrated how sporting a big albie can be on 10 lb test. Having demonstrated the proper technique, he went back to the more exciting activity of searching the rocks for the numerous flies lost by careless fishermen.
And of course Your's Truely. My specialty was weaving many intricate and complicated knots into my leader by waving it back and forth over my head. Once and awhile I was interupted by a desperate albie which couldn't find any other fly to hit.
It wasn't easy to overcome the 5 knot puffs of wind and the six inch ripples on the water made presentation a challange but we survived. Also, I think it was raining a little too.
Later in the day we were joined by the esteemed Lefty who displayed remarkable calm under the pressure of an intense fluke blitz. It isn't easy to keep a clear head when those flatfish are going airborne! Lesser men have been known to fall apart and act strangely, even misplacing their gear under such excitment.
Later that evening our little group was enhanced by the addition of the Esteys. These fine gentlemen are always welcome in my camp [and not just for their culinary talents!]. Wisely anticipating the disappearence of the tunoids with the approaching weather, they brought their own. One of my fondest memories of my first clave is the Esteys' peach cobbler. Years from now when I remember this clave, the grilled tuna steaks will figure promenently.
So ended the first day of the First Annual Hardcore Clave. Speaking for myself, as well as Matthew, there is no question we made the right choice in coming down. I suspect the others would agree. I'll leave it to the others to fill in the rest of the story.
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