Ultra Light Not So Bright

Ultra Light Tackle Trout

Recently, I have been experimenting ultra-light fishing tackle.  When targeting Redfish and Trout, most people (the ones that are smarter than me) use medium or medium-light tackle.  Because I am not particularly bright, I fish for these species with light tackle.  It makes the game more challenging and fun.  So, it stands to reason that ultra-light tackle would make fishing especially fun.  Right? 

Not so fast my friend.  First, you have to think about the lures you want to fish.  For me, it is a 1/10-ounce NedLockZ jig with a Z-Man Finesse TRD.  Then you select the tackle that casts and works the lure effectively.  A Shimano 5’6” Clarus spinning rod matched with a 500 frame Siena reel that is spooled with 5-pound PowerPro braid does a pretty good job.  As it turns out, selecting tackle is the easy part.  Catching fish is a different story.

Lesson number one.  Do not target big Redfish holding under a dock with ultra-light tackle.  The hook up is exciting but the break off is frustrating.  Final score.  Big Redfish 6.  Ultra-light tackle 0.  Yes, it took me 6 times to determine this is a bad idea.  Like I said, I am not that smart.

Lesson number two.  Practice on the little guys.  Right now, Trout are schooled up in holes (10 to 15 feet deep) directly adjacent to shallow oyster laden areas.  Most of these fish are small in stature but a blast to catch with ultra-light tackle.  Bouncing a 1/10-ounce jig down the depth transition is a sure ticket to steady action.  The strike is extremely light.  In this situation, ultra-light tackle is an advantage.  Final score.  Tiny Trout 0.  Ultra-light tackle 20.

Lesson number three.  Use a 10-pound fluorocarbon leader.  I tried 6-pound.  Epic fail.  It does not have enough abrasion resistance.  I tried 8-pound.  It worked pretty well.  But 2 feet of 10-pound fluorocarbon leader is what I settled on. 

Lesson number four.  Fishing with ultra-light tackle is especially fun.  Just don’t target big Redfish under docks!

March Madness

Brody before the GameStop trade

For me, March is the most difficult month to fish.  This March, will be especially difficult as Brody (the amazing fish finding and stock trading dog), is taking the month off.  A few week ago, Brody crushed the GameStop trade.  Now, all he wants to do is eat steak and nap in the early spring sun.  Trade stocks?  Been there, done that.  Find fish?  Nope, but another steak sounds good.  Thankfully, before completely checking out, Brody put together a list of March fishing tips.

Fishing tip number one.  Take a moment to look around.  It is spring in the Lowcountry. 

Fishing tip number two.  It is important to have a plan.  On sunny days, mud minnows and finger mullet will congregate around oyster bars in shallow water.  Trout and Redfish will be there as well.  Looking for an easy meal.  Plan to fish around shallow oyster bars on warm and sunny days.  Speaking of plans, the best time to shop for steaks is first thing in the morning. 

Fishing tip number three.  Buy some insect repellent.  The fish may not be hungry, but the gnats always are.  I am feeling a little hungry was well.  Can you make a reservation for one at the club?  I promise to bring you a doggie bag! 

Fishing tip number four.  If you do not catch any fish, refer to fishing tip number one. 

It has been my hope that Brody would tire from living a life of leisure.  Things are not looking good.  It seems steaks and naps agree with him.  So, Brody’s time on the boat will be limited.  As for me?  I am going fishing but first I need to go shopping for some steaks.