Easter time on the Island and that normally heralds the start of the rainy season for us. Lake levels have been super low, almost to the point that I haven't been able to get the boat off the dock some mornings. A few overnight showers raised the lake level enough that we could start exploring the back waters that have been inaccessible for the past few months.
We had a small weather window of perfect, dead calm days to take advantage of, and my guest this week was a professed Tarpon fanatic. As we pulled away from the dock we spotted a flock of Snowy Egrets on the far side of the lake starting to feed on the mosquito fish that number in their millions on the lake. With water levels rising more shallow areas started to become accessible to both us and the Tarpon. A big fed was about to start.
To get to where the action was starting I needed to push the Millennium Tarpon through the soft mud in the back waters of the lake, as we were barely floating at this stage. The Tarpon couldn't help but to have their backs glistening out of the water as they swam along - there is skinny water and then there was this.
We were in for a treat however. Unfortunately the Egrets relocated, but the Tarpon stayed, and they stayed in numbers like I hadn't seen before. (video below). If we thought this was going to be a walk in the park to snag a Silver King, we were very mistaken. We had on a small white fly that had been working a treat in previous feeding events, but the water was so stirred up it was impossible for the Tarpon to actually see the fly, and it was going to be all about putting the fly at the right place at the right time. And that wasn't easy!
We ended up sitting and videoing the feed for a while. My guest, who had seen just about everything when it came Tarpon, had never seen anything quite like what was going on here, and he was mesmerized.
After casting and casting into the melee of Tarpon madness, sure enough we hooked up and landed the first of a few Tarpon for that morning. After the excitement of the feeding frenzy died down, the Tarpon went into cruising and rolling mode as they spread out across the lake. They also became super fussy all of a sudden. We were throwing all sorts of color combinations at them and what was working last week was not working this morning. Eventually we ended up on a totally black deer hair number that got their attention. We landed about 4 Tarpon which was a really excellent morning fishing. Mornings like this are why we keep coming back, there is something about fishing Tarpon that just doesn't get boring. And mornings like this certainly keep the addiction fueled.
Here are some photos of that morning and a video of the crazy feeding. Until next time, tight lines!
A proper revive and release is crucial after each catch.
Just one man and his fish