Getting back in the saddle can be tougher than what you’d initially imagined. We’ve all experienced it at some point or another. Life or work always seems to find a way to get in the way of getting out on the water and getting on the fish. It’d been a long 5 months since I’d had the chance to get my yak wet and slimed with some fish, but I was determined to get back in the saddle to start the new year.
Like I’d said previously, it’d been a long 5 months. My regular 9-5 had us working a ton of weekends and it seemed that all I’ve done these past few months is work. So when my longtime friend and fellow Outlaw, Tony, gave me a call about getting on the water, I jump at the chance. I’d been determined to spend more time on the water for this new year, and this was the perfect chance to get back in the saddle.
The day for our trip was the first Saturday in January, and I quickly spent the days leading up to it gathering gear and getting my rods rigged and ready. The only thing that dampened my mood was I discovered one of my Okuma Helios rods had a small crack near the reel seat, due to something falling on it in the garage. While disappointed, I was fortunate enough to have another rod lying around to replace it. Saturday morning rolled around finally, and with my Old Town Predator MX yak and gear loaded up, I headed east along I-10 heading to Jacksonville, and finally back to some fishing.
We decided to make a late launch, and didn’t hit the water til around 9am or so. We were a trio for this trip, with myself, Tony, and Henry, Tony’s brother-in-law. We took our time catching up and paddling back to the creeks that we’d be fishing that day. It was definitely amazing to be back on the water and back in the saddle. We were fishing the high tide to begin, so we decided to look for some speckled sea trout to start the day. Tony was first on the board, and started picking up some small trout. The rest of us paddled over to the area and started getting the skunk off ourselves with some dink trout as well.
With the height of the water, we decided to explore some new areas and see if we could stir up some quality fish but all we were finding were small trout. With the tide slowly moving out, we pushed back to where we’d initially planned on fishing, and started working our way back to our redfish hole. We worked some oyster mounds along the way back, but it seemed like nobody was home.
We entered the redfish hole that we’ve traditionally always had great luck, and started getting set up. I knew the best way to get back in the saddle for sure was to have a rod doubled over and drag screaming from a quality redfish. It wasn’t a long wait, and I fought a nice redfish to the yak. Tony & Henry quickly joined in on the fun themselves as the redfish bite simply went off like crazy. We sat there in that one spot for a few hours, catching redfish after redfish. I cannot tell ya how awesome it felt to be on the water catching redfish, laughing and talking smack amongst friends, and simply having a great time. I had truly gotten back in the saddle.
We fished for a few hours before deciding to head back to the launch. We’d all had an epic day of fishing, tons of laughs, some nice redfish to bring home for dinner, and sore arms from reeling in redfish after redfish. It had been my first kayak fishing trip of the new year, and the first in several months. We lost count of how many redfish we’d caught that day, truly signifying I’d made it back in the saddle. I’m already psyched and ready for the next trip. I’m back in the saddle, so fish be on notice!