Fishing is often reliant on the weather cooperating and well let's say it did not. I somehow managed to roll into town for the Saltyfly Tournament in Florida with a cold front and rolled out of Florida with another cold front pushing me back to Belize.
One thing that affects your mindset and your body temp is the fact that I only own one pair of jeans and it was frigid outside. Simplifying my life when I moved from FL to Belize last year is a understatement. I can officially pack my life belongings including my clothes into just a few tupperware containers. So there I was, ill prepared for the foul weather other than my Simms Rogue Fleece Hoodie (which did a fine job of keeping my upper half warm) my teammate Courtney and I made our way to prefish and get in the groove for next days affair.
Venturing out into a completely new area is one of my favorite things to do. Exploring some new territory, wondering what is around the next shoreline is what I love about this sport. Maybe it's the fact that saltwater flyfishing is so similar to hunting, the stalk is what gets me up at 5am ready to rock. We found a few redfish but no takers, not sure if it was the fly or the lockjaw that they were giving us but regardless we got dialed in for tournament the next day.
Captains meetings are full of funny fisherman, explosive egos and typically lots of alcohol to enhance our time together. This one was nothing short of my expectations but rather exceeded them, what a great tournament Sam Root puts on!! My night was filled with strange encounters, how weird is it nowawdays when you meet someone that you feel like you know but really you've only met them through social media? The introductions and connections were priceless.
Off to a early start, way too early considering the night before but anyhow we managed to get on the road and head out for a challenging but fun day fishing. So first off I just want to say that there is no silence when you have 3 ladies on a small flats skiff :) Fishing with Courtney Marie Martin & Capt Lori Deaton was not only entertaining but one of the best days I've had on the water in a long time. Unfortunately the fish we were going to target didn't have enough water to show up on the flat due to the cold front but we managed to come across some nice singles and doubles cruising. The weigh-in was great, nice work to all the guys that posted up!! I was surprised to find that Dave Choiunard, Sam Root & Courtney had conived and gave me a new fly reel for making the trek from Belize. Thanks to you all, it will be broken in well down here.
Sunday was the poling & casting competition on the beach, boy did those guys work hard to get the job done. Not only was Chouinard & Sam quite entertaining while commentating on the mic but all in all it was a good time hanging out for the last day of the Saltyfly. I will be back next year boys!!
The folks picked me up and carted me home for a few days in Fort Myers. It was nice to be home and catch a few snooks and reds on whitebait (thanks Jubby) with mom and dad. Followed up by a surprise birthday party with all my good friends (thanks Molly), it couldn't have been a better trip back to Florida.
I will always be a Florida Cracker no matter where I live on this beautiful earth. Back in Belize and back to bonefishing, getting ready for that permit shot when it presents itself.