Friday, April 9, 2010

Earn Your Stripes

Each April, like clockwork, a local river mouth attracts holdover, school-sized striped bass and the hordes of anglers trying to fool them. During last night's excursion we almost missed both, almost. We arrived to a virtually empty parking lot and when I opened the Jeep door, I found out why.  The wind was blowing something serious out of the southwest right in our teeth. The only other angler there was packing up, stating the wind was just too much to deal with and he suggested we try to find a spot upstream out of the elements. That was out of the question though and into the darkness we went. 

The last three times I have taken my younger brother fishing, we got skunked...badly.  I was nervous he was starting to think my fish stories were exactly that, just stories. Well after building him up for a few days about our upcoming striper outing, his excitement and confidence were high. Of course Mother Nature had to step in and throw a little wrench into the plan. The wind made it difficult to stay in contact with his offering, a Yozuri Mag Darter, but he soon got the hang of it and was making quality drifts in no time. After about an hour of casting and retrieving, his rod bent over as a feisty striper whacked his plug. The outgoing tide and strong river current added to the fight, and a shit-eating grin spread across his face. I don't know who was more pumped when he lipped his first-ever linesider - but it was a great experience for us both.

Garrett's first striped bass!

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