Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Playing Hooky

Yesterday afternoon the Island Girl came in and suggested we spend the rest of the day in the boat.

The Island King was on his way home from a photo shoot so her timing was perfect.

I still had several things I needed to do and I had planned on meeting some friends in Crestview that night but we haven't seen sunshine in quite a while and the call of the sun and the pull of the sea got the best of me.

So we loaded the boat and off we went.

It was gorgeous out and felt a little like "Great Blue Heron Day" because they were everywhere.

Of course there were pelicans

A very happy Sea Gull

And some Terns who seemed to be discussing the weather.

We ended the afternoon with a slow cruise through the harbor. 

Margaritaville has come to town but we haven't been yet. 

We almost pulled in to Dewey's for shrimp but knew the boys would be mad so we passed on by - for today.

 The sunset was spectacular and even though I didn't accomplish everything I needed to, I don't regret skipping out early one bit.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Wrong Key Comic Strip

My cousin's brother, Tim Banfell, writes the most amazing comic 

Go check him out - he always makes me smile!

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Point Washington State Forest Campground

Point Washington State Forest has several really nice hiking trails and one of our favorite winds around the head of Eastern Lake.

There's a quiet little spot right on the lake and we've often sat at the picnic table there thinking we needed to come back to fish.

It is a pretty spot but I always think of the scene in Crocodile Dundee where she's getting water and a croc grabs her. We don't have crocodiles but we do have gators and I don't really like to stand too close to the water.

We have a geocache hidden there so last fall we drove out to check on it and to our surprise found a small campground.

There are 4 spots and each one is set back off the trail and comes with a gravel pad, grill, picnic table and fire ring.

There is no water or electricity but there is a porta potty just up the trail.

We've camped there twice since they opened and have really enjoyed it.


I will say this... in the summertime it can be absolutely brutal there and I would suggest bringing LOTS of bug spray.

The road in is not in great shape and there are some good sized holes as well as some soft sand. 4x4 isn't necessary but could be helpful in the rainy season.

Camping is $10 a night and reservations can be made by calling  (850) 547-7083 or (850) 267-8325.

Go out and explore the Forest - you'll love it.

Friday, April 17, 2015

Under the Light is Right

It's been rainy and gloomy around here for the past week and we're definitely starting to get cabin fever so we decided to go fishing Wednesday night.

Our plan was to catch some bait and then try catching a red fish or possibly a trout or two.

We put the boat in the water and the Island King aims for the head of Joe's Bayou. We get to a spot where a finger of the bayou meets the road and even though it's seriously dark, he proclaims this the spot to catch bait.

Wait. What? Why aren't we under – or even near - a dock light?

He tells me this story about baby fish, the water still isn't warm, blah, blah, blah.

In my experience, I've always fished under a light, especially for bait but who knows, maybe we'll catch a whole mess of pin fish up here in the dark.

We didn't.

As we drifted slowly back out into the bayou I did catch a really nice sized boat.

Thankfully, I was fishing with a tiny hook and weight so I didn't do any damage.

The Youngest caught a really small redfish which got thrown back but other than that – not even a nibble.

After about an hour of fishing in the dark, the Island King decided we'd do better out in the Bay in front of the Army Rec Center.

Great, there are lights there so we might actually catch some bait.

Except, when we got there, he didn't want to go near the dock lights, he anchored off to the side of the little channel leading into their marina. In the dark.

The Youngest caught a catfish and the Island King caught a grunt but neither were what we were looking for so they both went back into the water.

We were there for about an hour when we decided to call it a night.

As we were cruising back to the boat ramp I mentioned that maybe next time we should try to fish under some of the dock lights instead of in the dark.

He took that as a challenge and declared that we'd go back the next night and I could determine where to fish.

That sounded like a great plan to me so Thursday night we headed out again.

Our first destination was a light just around the bend from the boat ramp that I'd spotted the night before.

We put some cut up squid on our hooks and the Youngest and I cast while the Island King kept the boat in the right spot.

Boom. Within moments of putting our hooks in the water I had a redfish and the Youngest had a pinfish.

The red was too small to keep so we snapped a quick picture and then let it go.

The pinfish, on the other hand, went straight into the bait well.

A second cast and moments later we each brought in another pin.

The Youngest looked at me and said “I'm gonna go with your bait theory instead of Dad's”

Smart boy.

We were obviously in a good spot but I wanted to prove my point by fishing under a couple of other lights as well.

We spotted an underwater green light and decided to try there next.

I wish these had been around when I was a kid. It would have been so cool to have one of these at the end of our dock.

I've never fished around one so I wasn't sure but decided to give it a try.

A few nibbles but not a lot of luck. Hmm. Don't know if it's the color of the light or just no luck.

We moved on to another light and within moments pulled in 2 more pinfish.

We had all we needed to go for something bigger so off we went to find a spot.

And of course I sang, “Under the light was right” over and over again.

He doesn't believe me but I say the proof is in the pudding. We fished in the dark and caught nothing. We fished under the light and got all the bait we needed within 15 minutes.

Bless his heart, he hates it when I'm right.

After we had our bait he decided to fish in the channel coming into the bayou.

I suggested we back off a little ways from some of the lights and catch the bigger fish who were there to eat the little fish but he didn't believe that would work.


Out into the channel we went AND we didn't even get a nibble.

Now we need to go back and test my theory about fishing just out of range of the dock lights for trout or redfish.