Monster Kayak Bonefish!

by Chris Lewis November 27, 2010

No words I write will correctly describe the events that took place today…but I will try. I started the day out excited about the perfect conditions that were forecasted. I launched to overcast skies and glass calm water. I had high hopes even though I haven’t seen a bonefish since September. I poled and I poled and I poled. Over two miles one way. 4 hours later I was still poling and had lost all faith. There was still time in the tide left but I was contemplating heading home. I decided to just sit and enjoy the scenery in hopes something might happen. I put on some Pandora radio from the iPhone and sat still for nearly 20 minutes….nothing. I decided now would be a great time to practice casting my fly rod in hopes that one day I will figure it out (still trying to teach myself). I spotted a feather floating on the surface and I crept up on it as though it were a huge tailer…I blew three shots on the feather. I thought to myself, jeez…what am I going to do when I see a bonefish. Out of the corner of my eye I saw the unmistakable, unfamiliar sight of a tail pop up. OMG!!! It’s a bone! I dropped that fly rod so fast it wasn’t funny. I launched the jumbo shrimp a country mile and it landed right on his nose….Crap! I spooked him. I sat there with my head held low and rod at my waist. As I began to reel up to regain composure to relocate him I noticed something wasn’t right….ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ! I have caught 8 bonefish before and none of them sang like this one! 250yds no lie…there was a football field worth of grass on my line. I was already preparing myself for failure at this point. I chased like crazy pedaling my hobie as fast as it would go and reeling like a mad man to keep constant pressure. He was headed directly for a crab trap but somehow decided to turn in my favor! Things were looking better with each moment. As the fight turned to little short bursts I could see just how huge this fish was. It did not look natural…Gigantic! I caught 2 fish over 10lbs in the summer and this one was much bigger. I felt like I would never get him to my hand as we played back in forth for what felt like eternity! I scooped him up and he was mine! My guess is 12lbs. Finally the monkey was off my back. 3 months of heart ache and disappointment erased in nearly 5 minutes. I was as high as I have ever been fishing. I frantically played the catch photo and release game as bonefish can’t be out of the water too long. One solution I have found for this is to snap a quick iphone shot the second I catch him just for proof and then put him back in the water still hooked so he can swim around while I prepare the camera. I have had a lot of success with this method and sometimes they are so frisky I can barley hold them for the picture. I snapped two pictures both of which came out like crap for some reason…maybe all the clouds and water looking the same. This was really one of about 3 fish in my life I didn’t want to let go because I was so happy just capturing him…He swam right out of my hands…absolutely incredible! Hopefully it is not another 3 months until I experience it again but that is what makes them so special. The sweet is never as sweet without the sour!

– Tex

You can look at more pictures of my kayak Bonefish, Tarpon, Permit and Redfish here http://www.flickr.com/photos/team-mayhem/

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