Of all the types of angling — from the salt flats, deep blue oceans, rivers, streams, etc., — there is most likely not one angler who doesn’t have that “bucket list” fish on their list on all types of gear from spin to fly. I had the honor and privilege of making one of those bucket list fish catches happen for an angler this past weekend.
We decide to fish out of his skiff so I was a little out of the comfort zone of my Maverick HPX. We hit the Mosquito Lagoon bright and early and made a run to an area that is still fairly clean to sight fish. I assumed my position on the poling platform and we were on quite a few small snook on fly pretty quick. Although fun, my angler was after his first redfish on fly. We left the small creek mouth that was holding a multitude of the snook and began creeping down the adjacent shoreline. He was throwing a fly I had actually tied the night before that is usually a given to produce Redfish. Not long after, he made a cast to a fallen cluster of Mangrove snags and began the retrieve. After a couple of strips with the fly a very apparent wake was tracking the fly and boom, he was hooked up. The fish made a couple a short runs without breaching the surface even once.
I was pretty convinced this was neither a Trout or Snook due to its behavior after the hookup. Much to our delight, as the fish was retrieved boat-side our mission had been accomplished. My angler had his redfish on fly in hand. Although not a giant just the fact that he had his first redfish on fly and I was there to assist him in making it happen was enough for us. A couple of high fives and the fish was released to fight another day. Perhaps as one of the large bulls the Lagoon is famed for. But today, this small slot Redfish made one anglers “bucket list” a little shorter and the fact that I was there to help make it happen is bittersweet.
For anyone looking to experience sight fishing the shallows on fly and light tackle contact the Charter Captains of Florida Fly Co. Charters on Facebook at Florida Fly Co. Charters or our website.
Captain Alan Ryland