The digital clock just flipped to 5:00 AM. I was already awake due to anticipation. I got dressed in the usual attire for what I was about to embark on and grabbed an old pair of tennis shoes. I gathered up my fishing gear, which consisted of a sturdy rod, a silver spoon with a purple twister tail, pliers, and some backup bait. It was still dark, with a hint of light beginning to filter through the trees, when I hopped into my pickup.
It was a short drive to my favorite part of the river. My pulse quickened as my anticipation peaked now that I was nearing the final destination. I flipped off my shoes and slipped on the old pair. Gear now flung over my shoulder, pliers in my pocket, I breathed in the rivers scent and was ready to push on. I had to cross a smaller creek to get over to the main body. The rapidly surging waters cooled my feet as I stepped across the river rock and shale. Small bass scurried away, but they had nothing to fear from me. I was in search of a more fearful predator.
I climbed over some old tree trunks of fallen giant maples. Previous storms or even old age had done its handiwork, but circumnavigating the rugged terrain was part of the excitement. The river was now in view. The river mist created by slightly warmer waters than the morning air was kissing the surface of the slow moving currents. This was a deeper section of the Grand River in Northern Ohio. It had to be to accomadate the most highly prized fresh water fish of the North. I ducked under branches and forced my way throw the thick foilage a few hundred more feet and stepped into the water with my already soaked old pair of tennis shoes. It was a required part of the attire to avoid picking up leaches along the mucky banks. I waded through the waist high water to an island. I stepped onto its shores. It was a strategic location, ripe for an ambush by the raveness nemisis that prowled its bank and shoals.
My cast hit the river's surface. The first splash was in the books. Above me circled a hawk. Peering over my shoulder to where the waters were shallower down river, a group of dear were lazily making their way across, keeping a wary eye on me at the same time. My second cast hit the water and immediately the line went taunt. You have to be careful of what you did next because the numerous submerged rocks could play you a fool. I returned the rod tip with equal force. A few seconds later the waters swurled violently and the king of the river exited into the air. The battle of wits was on. Days before this I had lost a trophy after it had bitten through my line, so played this one carefully. The 40 inch muskie broke the surface several more times before he surrendered to my will twenty minutes later. I carefully dislodged the bent up hooks, calculated its size, and sent the vanquished ruler on his way. I took a deep breath of satisfaction and watched the proud monarch of the river disappear.
That was a magical year, one of my best fishing experiences. All in all I caught seven muskies in and around the same location in a two month period. One thing I learned that year while fishing that part of the river, when the muskies are prominent the small mouth are nowhere to be found. Years have passed since then and I now live in South Carolina, but when I return to Ohio, visiting family and friends, I make every effort to return to my favorite fishing hole.
Charleston doesn't have muskie or pike, both prized catches of the North, but it does have great fishing of another kind, salt water fishing, and size has no limits, meaning bigger fish, depending on what you are going after. The prized catch of the inner coastal waters around Charleston is the spottail bass. Of Course, to catch them, you need a boat or a good friend with a boat. If you are looking for a less expensive mode of transportation, kayak fishing is becoming quite popular. This type of fishing takes alittle getting use to, but it pays off both in expense and excitement. If you want to learn more about kayak fishing you can read this article in the Azalea Magazine. A great way to fly fish.
The other way to chase the spottails is by a fishing charter. Finding a charter with a experienced guide is important. A charter I went on while vacationing in the Charleston area didn't catch a single thing all morning, not even one hit. The guide couldn't even catch a shark in the Charleston Bay. Needless to say, we were not happy anglers. One suggestion for a dependable charter is Benford Fishing Charters. The operator is a new captain, but very knowledgeable of Charleston waters. Captain Marvie Benford specializes in shallow water light tackle fishing, and also offshore, harbor tours and cruises. Call or email (email@example.com) for pricing and trip details-(843 729 8079) or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.