The Fly life

Monday, January 7, 2008

Seeing Red

Hi all,

Another week has passed fishingless and I have finally got some of the photos together to make this post that we've been most excited about! Well, as the regular readers will know by now, I went on a trip to visit Justin(he's relocated to HK) with the hopes of getting a crack at the mangrove Jacks that are reputed to live there.

If you've been keeping up with the posts, you'd know that little fishing was done. However, when an opportunity presented itself in the form of a Saturday off from holiday(if there is such a thing), we seized the chance and headed for a spot that Justin wanted to try out.

With both of us having next to no local knowledge, we just headed out with a bunch of lures and flies and here's how the day went.

we met at around 8 am in the morning and proceeded to make our one hour pilgramage to the "promised land" by train/bus. It was a pleseant Journey with many scenes of Hong Kong echoing our native Singapore. We got off one stop after where we were supposed to alight (see lack of any knowledge) and walked back to the location that was to be our stomping ground for the day.

Reaching the area, we noticed many of the anglers present were useing live bait. Again, our lack of any clue as to what to fish for here showed. We made a team decision to stick to our game plan of only flies and artificials(too lazy to source bait and all).

First casts went out at about 9 am with Justin on soft plastic (bass minow) and myself with the trusty hard body. We saw and unknow fish jump and break the surface at around our 3rd cast. Both of us were thinking that that was the only fish we'd be seeing for the whole day (no idea what we were doing)

This was however not to be. Justin started reporting "hits"on the plastic on this 5th cast and I was doing my usual "cast everywhere"thing when I felt a slight take. I increased the pressure and I was on! The fight lasted only a couple of seconds and I saw a little red fish break the surface. For some reason, the fish managed to spit the hook before I could land it. THis prompted a long "what the %&&*"from Justin with me sharing the sentiment (bear in mind that we expected to be fishless).

The same cycle went on during the next two casts: Tap, Strike, fight, color, drop the fish. I inspected the hooks leader, rod. trust me, if it was there we checked. By now Justin had already begun whooping as he brought in the first redfish of the day.

Trying to stay unperturbed... I continued casting to the same spot that had yielded the eariler hookups.This time I was determined to land a reddie. I retrived as usua, felt the Tap, resisted the urge to strike, and felt a solid whomp! as the fish crunched the hardbody and took off. Increasing pressure to set the hooks, i played the fish for what must have been a minute or two and was rewarded with the landing of my first redfish!

This was then followed by a succession of reddies for me while Justin pulled in what would later become the biggest fish for the day. Not to be outdone, I casted out of my little 'hole' in hopes of hooking a more sizable fish. I was rewarded with a monster of a fish that managed to earn its freedom by twisting the trebles of my lure. Didn't land it but it was fun.

When the fish the the main body of water went off the chew, I continued with my "cast everywhere"thing and justin persisted with a hard body. I managed to find a little holding of redfish and repeated the process. Justin, having lost his reddie and the lure, to a spectecular bust off came over after deciding that the bigger fish didn't want to play anymore. By now, we were on 15 plus fish going on 20 and out came the fly rods as swirls could be seen all around.

casting about 40 odd feet and taking turns to cast yielded us 2 red fish a piece. They pulled like everyone that has caught them said they would. It was a joy an pleasure to land such a magnificient fish and to watch it swim away into the murk that it came from.

The afternoon wore on with us landing and releasing close to 30 odd Redfish and with Justin catching a little "blue speckled"mangrove Jack. We got a good look at this Jack and both concluded that it was one weird fish.

All in all, a really great day facing off with one of fly fishing's pantheon. Tight lines and smiles all around!

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