Saturday, August 18, 2018

My 300th Fish

Today I went fishing with my Brother and Grandfather at Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park. They have docks for fishing on the southwest part of the island, and I had heard from a successful fisherman that knows the area that live shrimp was his bait of choice. With 297 fish caught, I was looking forward to having a good time fishing a new spot and hopefully catching my 300th fish. We stopped off at Arky’s and were on our way. We Arrived at around 6:30 and had about an hour and a half to fish. The two dozen shrimp proved to be the perfect amount because we used the last one on the last drop. Once we got to one of the docks, we could see schools of Snapper in the coral right under the dock. I had set up the three rods with hooks and some egg sinkers and baited them with shrimp. The first fish to be caught was a Schoolmaster that my grandfather and I both reeled in. The second was a Porkfish that I had caught. I was one fish away. Then, my grandfather brought in another Porkfish. The sun was beginning to set. I let my bait fall all the way to the bottom and gave my line some slack. When I could see a fish take my bait and my line peeling off of my reel, I reeled in the slack and set the hook. I brought in a nice Schoolmaster Snapper, my 300th fish! After that, I tried to catch the elusive needlefish on the surface of the water I dangled my shrimp so that it would float on the surface and watched the fish approach my shrimp as it tried to move away from it. Once the needlefish got ahold of the shrimp and I felt a bump on my rod, I lifted it up and over the wall and onto the dock. It wasn’t hooked well, and it came off the hook. The floor was not flat, as it was made of metal bars. The thin needlefish, as its name explains, slid through the hole. I couldn’t get a picture. The next fish to be caught was Jacob’s first fish of the day. He brought up a Schoolmaster. The next to fish were both Schoolmasters, first by my grandfather and then by me. After the sun had set in front of us, we were facing west, we kept on fishing as we still had some light. Jacob and I felt a nice tug, reeled it in, and we caught it! A Mangrove Snapper! The last two fish to be caught were Schoolmasters by Jacob that he had reeled out of the water but fell off as he was trying to bring it over the side. We finished our shrimp and the light went out just as we got back to the car. I ended the day with 303 fish. It was a really fun day catching different fish at a new spot, including my 300th!

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