On board today, I had Fly Rodder Jack McGuinness from California, and his Dad, Brian on LT.
Last night, NOAA called for East winds 15-20 and building, with higher gusts. I e-mailed Jack and said it is going to be tough fishing and we should cancel. He called me a short time later and said, “Do we really have to cancel…?” I replied, “If you can throw a fly in a 20+ knot East wind, we can go…” There was a long pause, and then Jack replied: “I can do that…” That was all I needed to hear.
At first light, winds were cranking as promised and the flags were all out straight. Rolling chop with whitecaps mixed in. We head out to were I had scouted for fish last night and they were still there, stacked up! Jack picked up the 9 wt TFO Clouser rod with 300 grain sink tip rigged with a Baymen Universal and launched it into the wind. I was amazed. This kid could throw a fly. FISH ON! A moment later, Brian hooked up on LT. Double hook-ups.
The winds were absolutely cranking out of the East and we made some big swings up wind to set our drifts. I was cautious at first, fearing I might spook the bait and bass if I came in too close. But then I realized it was so windy and rough the bass and bait were not bothered by the boat pulling right into them. We set drift after drift on a couple nice schools of bass with birds working overhead. For three solid hours it was non-stop fishing.
By the fourth hour, the blitz was done and winds has picked up even more. We began to run recon around the bay and found very little actions anywhere. We fished some structure and picked up another fish or two, and then found a handful of fish under birds where we started the morning. We landed a few more fish and it was over. We called it a great morning and headed for harbor.
I just have to mention something about Jack’s casting this morning. There was a fish rolling at three O’clock and I yelled it out to Jack and pointed. Jack was facing the other way, spun around, saw the fish and made a false cast and landed the fly on the nose of that striped bass 60 feet away and immediately hooked up! It was just a thing of beauty and as perfect of a cast as I’ve ever seen! And it just comes naturally to him.
Total catch and release today was a surprising 38 fish in very windy conditions and rough seas. But what a great way to spend an October morning as my striped bass season draws to a close.
Back at it with my final trips this week. Stay Posted:
Capt. David Bitters, BAYMEN, www.baymenlife.com Covid-19 Protocol observed on all Baymen Charters & guide services
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