Actual Vs. Relative

Suddenly faced with the prospect of having to catch a nice bonefish for the camera(s) this week, I began thinking What’s my strategy?

I thought back to the mid-1980s when I had to catch a bonefish for the Key West aquarium and what I did then: even though it was the middle of December and water temps were in the low 70s, I knew I could hit the outgoing tide on Marvin Key’s ancient flats and lure some big bones off the reef with the smell of shrimp.  How did I learn that?  One of my first charters, who was desperate to catch a fish on cold day, inspired me to try something I’d never tried before.   It was just a theory–that it wasn’t always about the actual water temperature that made fish appear, but relative water temperature.  I still include that in all of my assumptions about finding fish.

At least 50% of what I know about fly fishing in saltwater derived from baitfishing in saltwater.  I probably saw 1000 permit landed on live crabs before I ever saw one caught on fly.  So chunking smelly heads and tails into the outgoing tide isn’t a repugnant thought.   It’s just that it takes time away from doing what I love best, which  is the hard stuff.

So please, take your picture and let’s get on with it.