Friday, June 8, 2012

Kayaking With My Wife and a Fishing Surprise

My wife and I purchased kayaks a couple weeks ago. I have been able to take mine out fishing, but my wife, Holly, has not. Knowing she was itching to try out her new toy, I hired a baby sitter for the afternoon and took her.

Holly and I have two very different views of the outdoors and how time should be spent outdoors. She is a long distance runner. Marathons and the like. Her goal is to get from point A to point B in as short a time as possible. I, on the other hand, am a hunter. My goal is to quietly sneak in undetected and then wait to see what I see.

Our kayaking stiles reflected this.

Once I got Holly in the boat and showed her the right way to hold the paddle, she was off! Where I paddle a few strokes and then drift for a while, looking for a good place to cast, she just paddled hard, going from place to place.

At first this was frustrating for both of us. I was looking to hook a fish, but was moving so fast to keep up with Holly, I could not make good casts. She felt held back and was literally paddling circles around me. 

At one point I wanted to hand her the camera to take a picture of me. So, I stopped, hoping she would just drift up next to me.

Nope. She was just going too fast and kept circling and making fast passes. I never got the camera over to her.

Eventually, I gave up on any serious fishing and she grew content circling me like a hungry shark.  We explored every little cove of the lake we were on and then decided to head home.

As we were leaving I decided to make one last cast.

The day before I had purchased a new 5' ultra light rod. My 7' rod made it too difficult to land a fish in my kayak. I had it rigged with 4 pound test and a small, white grub, the type used for crappie.

I made my cast and began jigging the grub back to me. About half way to my boat I hit a I thought! When the "snag" began to turn my kayak around, I knew I had a good fish!  My drag began to scream and I saw a flash and the unmistakable lateral line of a good largemouth bass deep in the water.

The fish took several hard runs, but my knots and line held and I successfully netted it.

It weighed in at a little over 4 pounds and was the largest bass I have caught in years. It was easily the largest fish I have caught on light line.

Even though it would have made a nice meal for my family, I let it go. I have trouble keeping the big ones.  Catching them provides me with so much pleasure, it just seems selfish to kill them.

Holly and I concluded a rare afternoon to ourselves by racing back to the dock. I won, but only because I knew where the dock was!

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