Happy Birthday To Me :)

Traditions. It’s what makes us who we are. Every culture, every family has some sort of tradition that identifies us uniquely to each other. One such tradition in our family was each year we got to fish in Daddy’s homemade kayak for our birthday.P1181303.jpg

That’s it on top the car. I thought I had another picture somewhere but this was all I could find. Of course, I’m not in the picture…I’m taking it with my birthday present, a brand new camera of my own 🙂 There are so many things about that picture…oh my! Like my dad’s shorts, my brother Keith’s baseball socks, the white rabbit (that our dog ate for supper one afternoon), and the fact that there are only four (plus me) children. Kory wasn’t born yet. I’m thinking mom looks pretty hot here and lets’ see…Kory came soon after 🙂 I know, T.M.I. and this is supposed to be about my birthday, fishing, and family traditions.

Well, for our birthdays, we could fish with either mom or dad in that tandem kayak. BTW, daddy made it from a kit. I can remember one birthday when dad and I paddled to Lake Boeuf and he pulled under a tree branch to rest in the shade. I was in the front of the boat and there was a huge snake sunning itself on that branch. I freaked out and nearly jumped out of the kayak! Then there was the time when I hooked a monster bass near Lake Des Allemands and mom couldn’t get the net quick enough to land it and I lost what would have been my personal best. However, most of my birthdays were spent fishing a farm pond in Labadieville and it was a special treat to be able to fish out of the kayak.

This year, I decided to celebrate my birthday early. My options were 1) do some sight fishing for redfish in Point aux Chenes, Delecroix, or Hopedale or 2) visit one of my favorite nearby farm pond/lakes. One thing I knew I didn’t want to do was paddle out a mile or so into the marsh and have to haul butt back to the landing and try to outrun a thunderstorm. I chose option 2. With this heat, I knew the bite would be early so I hustled out early and launched shortly after 5:30 AM. Within five minutes, I had netted bass number 1.GOPR3904.jpg

Then came bass number 2GOPR3905.jpg

Then…well… you get the picture (pun intended)GOPR3907 2.jpgGOPR3909 2.jpgGOPR3910 2.jpgGOPR3911 2.jpgGOPR3912 2.jpgGOPR3913 2.jpgGOPR3914 2.jpgGOPR3916 2.jpg

I caught 11 bass and probably missed 8 others. I also caught two bull bream on poppers. After my third big bass, I decided to downsize my popper to the small frog. I continued to catch bass but I noticed they would only slurp the small popper, whereas they smoked the large one! I put the big popper back on before I called it a morning and that’s when I caught that last big bass. Of the 11 I caught, only three were under 15 inches, so they are quality fish! IMG_2563.jpgSo going fishing has been a very important tradition in my life. As I look at my fly rods, I cannot help but think that I relish the peace and tranquillity that fly fishing brings me. I only wish I would have been introduced to the fly rod sooner. As for that old kayak. It dry-rotted many years ago, but the memories it holds are still imbedded in my mind. I’m sure it’s the same for some of my siblings. Now…to continue that tradition with my granddaughter. IMG_4734.jpg
Hudson models her very first monogrammed fishing outfit 🙂

 

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So Long, 2014! Welcome 2015!

This will be my last post of 2014. It’s been a fun, relaxing year. When I look at my numbers of fish, it looks like my production was down, especially for saltwater (speckled trout and redfish), mostly because I made fewer trips down to the marsh and my daughter got married. The wedding and the parties that followed were epic so it really doesn’t bother me at all that I didn’t get to fish as much as usual.

DaniNandiWED-249We pose together for a picture before I walked her down the isle.

Anyone who knows me, knows that my wife is my soul and my children are my heart.  Here’s baby Dani and me.

Daddy loves baby Dani 1 My little girl has her mom’s smile!

Pretty Dani 1
Dani and Dustin with a speckled trout from years ago.

Dani & Dusti's Spec  She’s growing up but she still likes to fish.

Dani's red Here she’s all grown up and even catches redfish from a kayak.

Danielle's redfish

Well, back to the fishing. I did manage a few firsts that made it a memorable year so here are some of the highlights:

  • This year I had my first recapture of a redfish that I had tagged the previous year. I found out that the fish hadn’t moved more than about a quarter mile from where I first caught it.
  • Another highlight from this year’s fishing was when I caught my personal best redfish from a kayak at 33 inches. It’s also my personal best on a fly rod. https://kevinandry.wordpress.com/2014/11/28/thanksgiving-fishing-trip/
  • I also caught my first flounder on a fly.https://kevinandry.wordpress.com/2014/04/22/fishing-easter-monday-a-day-of-firsts/
  • This year marks the first time I document my redfish, bass, and trout catches and I was able to catch over a hundred bass on a fly rod. That’s a hundred fish that were caught and released to grow up and fight again and that’s pretty cool.

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Some of my goals for 2015 are to:

  • Increase my numbers of redfish and speckled trout.
  • Make a few more sacalait trips.
  • Catch a new species on my fly rod. I nearly caught a mangrove snapper this past summer.
  • Just have a lot of fun on the water

Happy New Year to all my subscribers!