I like analogies; they’re a great way to get people’s attention and relate to something they appreciate. What better common denominator than football. I’m prejudiced but to me head-knocking, bad boy scrimmages with blood and gnarly, grunting 300 lb. monster men is really the American pastime. Fly fishers are probably baseball fans—the poetry of “balletic” windup and delivery for the perfect pitch, is a thing of beauty; except when intercepted by an equally stunning whoosh and crack of the bat thus sending the ball arcing over the left field fence. Poetry in motion!
The red zone, however, tumbles along the craggy pass bottom, interrupted by the bridge pilings and buttresses, whirling and foaming to form inviting current breaks and ambush points. The passes are where the red zone begins. Head-knocker rigs that deliver and parade tasty morsels like shrimp, crabs, and pinfish kick-off the hunt for that bucket-list sow redfish.
Midfield tactics come into play as the tide floods out the backbay channels, prop dredges, and shallow potholes. The downfield cast with your limber 7-½ ft. spinning rod, appointed with small diameter 15 lb. braid and the accompanying fluorocarbon leader has a good chance of connecting with a tailing, busy-body redfish that’s trying to intercept a scurrying bait fish.
The end zone attack is where the red zone is compressed to a few precious yards of open water in front of the goal line. The goal post-like mangroves are where the real finesse, spot-on deliveries come into play. Skipping a scoring cast into and under the narrow, tightly sheltered canopy can challenge the most seasoned player. You’d best be at the ready when a rowdy bull red intercepts your perfectly delivered pinfish, making a break for the open water or a dash to the sidelines. Check your drag, keep your rod down initially, and pump and reel your prize to your waiting net mate. Touchdown! 26-inch spot tail in the cooler. A hardy high five, appropriate toasting at the home town pub; don’t forget the instant replay on your digital camcorder.
Capt. Ron Kowalyk: 239-267-9312