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Reel Adventure Charters......EVERGLADES REPORT

Georgia to North Carolina

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Reel Adventure Charters......EVERGLADES REPORT

Postby Reel Adventure » Mon Feb 26, 2007 1:27 pm


Thanks to everyone who has been reading my reports! I am still in Florida fishing in Pine Island and the Everglades and will return to NC the first of March to tangle with some shallow water NORTH CAROLINA redfish and to get everything ready for the up coming charter fishing season. It is shaping up to be a great year with the somewhat mild winter NC has had. I’m sure the spring fishing will be great! Trips are starting to book up, and if you would like to get out there this season, just give us a call!

Be sure to check out our new websites that are still in the works. They are:

Here is a true story that just happened to me that any angler can relate to. I hope this holds you over until my next report which should be full of North Carolina fishing!

“The one that got away.” By Capt. Matt Wirt

There is something ingrained in the mind of a angler that requires us to go back after “The one that got away”. We all have found ourselves back at the same location seeking revenge, just to find we are chasing a lost dream. We never get the revenge we seek but I think going back and trying to catch that same fish is part of the healing process that allows us to move on. I have done this countless times in my life and I even find my self up in the middle of the night thinking about the one that got away.

Well….THIS TIME…..I got revenge and it tasted good! Here is what happened.

About two weeks ago Capt Rick Bennett came down to Pine Island and we made the 2 hour trip to the Everglades. We left the ramp, rode about a half a mile and we were fishing our way to the Gulf of Mexico through the 10,000 islands. We were both using spinning gear with 10 lb braid and Berkley Gulp! jerk baits. It was daybreak and I made a cast to a point of a near by island that had a huge brush pile on the tip of it. It was my third cast of the day and SLAM. I got hit by a massive strike. I set the hook and the drag screamed. It did not jump, so that eliminated a big snook. It did not run or feel like a redfish. It surged back and forth violently, I almost thought it was a alligator…..it was just that different of a strike. It was about that time that it seemed like 14 things went wrong all at once. The tide was rushing the wrong way. I pushed the button for the trolling motor what seemed like 10 times but to no avail, etc, etc. There was just no time and the fish charged into the brush pile like a bear and the line quickly parted. I usually don’t get too excited over a lost fish but I almost broke my rod over my trolling motor! I had to blame something and the trolling motor got its undeserving share of the blame. All of it! I collected what little angling skill I had left and we went on and had a great day and caught lots of other fish. But the big one got away as usual.

Or did it? 2 weeks later a friend of mine Jason Todd, from Charlotte flew in and a Everglades trip was quickly concocted and the next morning we were off. 2 hours of early morning driving and we were leaving the same ramp, at the same tide, it was about a half hour earlier and it was still dark. We rig up the Gulp jerk baits and get to our first spot. I was up all night thinking about “the one that got away” and I knew were my first fishing location was going to be. I was after revenge but was sure I was going to be let down as usual. At this point I shared the dreaded “the big one got away” story with Jason as I made my way to the magical point and brush pile. I made sure it was going to be my third cast once again, and for some reason that seemed important. I cast and put the pearl white jerk bait right on target, and just the same as 2 weeks prior I was once again attached to something on the other end of the line that clearly did not want to be there. I excitedly set the hook way too hard and the drag grunted while the fish began the violent surges and head shakes, just like last time. The game was once again on. The fish went straight into the brush pile just like it did weeks before. I swear it looked like a bull ran into that pile, because the entire pile of brush seemed to come alive. Remembering my trolling motor dilemma from before I hastily urged Jason to crank the outboard and take me to the brush pile. He was right on cue and time was of the essence! I knew if I lost this fish this time I was going to be in need of therapy! As we motored to the pile of brush there was a point in which a little less pressure was applied to the fish and he slipped right back out of the brush pile the exact same way he went in. He quickly realized his mistake and surged for the pile again. I palmed the spool with easily enough pressure to part the 10 lb Spiderwire braided line but it held true. I now had the beast in open water and up to the surface it came. It was a 27 inch Gag Grouper and Jason was a pro with the net and got it on the first scoop. Here we are in pitch dark, looking at each other with this Grouper on the deck of my flats boat wondering what do we do now! Neither of us expected for it to be a Grouper and I never in my entire life expected to come back to that exact same spot in the Everglades and catch “the one that got away”!

The Grouper are a typical Everglades backcountry fish and it is a territorial species. The juveniles move into the backcountry in February and March to spawn and they protect their nest very aggressively. Anything that came past that brush pile was probably eaten just as my jerk bait was. I am happy to report that brush pile is now safe for all bait fish and the like to pass by. I caught the “one that got away”!

Be sure to check our website for the pics!

Capt. Matt Wirt
Reel Adventure Charters
Next Level Custom Rods
910-540-0570 Wilm, NC
Capt. Matt Wirt
Reel Adventure Charters
Next Level Custom Rods
Wilmington, NC
Reel Adventure
Cabin Boy
Cabin Boy
Posts: 48
Joined: Sun Jan 01, 2006 7:09 pm

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