October 22, 2014:
Today I met my client John Langdon from Pennsylvania and Morehead City NJ, at my marina at 7:30 AM, where we boarded “Fly Reel” and headed out of Beaufort inlet. The wind was blowing at 15 to 20 from the west, while the seas were choppy, with a water temperature of 73 degrees. We had a wonderful day on the water, where we saw lots of sipper Albies, they were up and down quickly, not many caught as it was imperative to be really quick, and the fish were over 100 yards away if the fly didn’t hit the splash as the Albies caused the bait to jump. Very Hard fly fishing. I really enjoyed fishing with John, we will be fishing together more in the near future.
October 23, 2014:
My old friends Gary and Wanda Taylor, from Georgia, arrived last night to participate in the “Cape Lookout Albacore Festival” and enjoy some “Carolina” hospitality. Today, Gary, Wanda, and I got a late start, heading out at about 8:00 AM in search of the elusive Albies, which were missing in action after a 5 day south and east blow. We now had a north wind for a couple of days and the Albies began to return to the area relatively close to shore. Fishing was hard however we did manage to release several fish today, it is just starting to get good fro out Festival.
October 24, 2014:
My client for the practice day along with the Cape Lookout albacore Festival Tournament was Ben Bowditch from Oriental NC. Today the conditions continued to improve, we had sunny, skies with 73 degree water temperature and light north west wind. Ben and I have fished together in the past and really enjoy spending time fly fishing together, with this the first Albacore Festival in about 7 years, this is a perfect venue to support the Project Healing Waters Program, while catching a few Albies on fly. Today ben caught and released four Albies of which the biggest one was 33 inches long, I estimated this fish at 15 to 17 pounds. Unfortunately, I took the pictures of this big fish with my I-Phone, so I could post it on face book, the lens was wet and dirty and the pictures were out of focus.
October 25, 2014:
“Cape Lookout Albacore Festival” Took Place today, last night was the sign up BBQ and fund raising auction, to raise money for my favorite charitable project ” Project Healing Waters” at the sponsor’s “Anchorage Marina” in Atlantic Beach NC. Many anglers, fly fishing celebrities, guides, and good citizens from eastern NC, and wounded warriors showed up to show there respect and support our heroes while enjoying our wonderful sport. There was a silent auction with awesome art treasures, rods and reels, guided fishing trips, and lots of other treasure auctioned off to support this cause.
My client and friend Ben Bowditch joined me aboard “Fly Reel” where we changed to new 15 pound test class tippet on Ben’s rod, and found the Albacore in 40 foot of water half way down Shackelford Bank. We used some 3 inch “Surf Candy” flies, tied on #4 Owner Hooks, in light brown and white, during both the practice day and tournament day. It took a couple of broken off leaders to realize that the material was rotten, then I broke out my Ande #15 pound test fluorocarbon leader material, and by 10:00 AM Ben had released 3 Albies from 6 hook-up’s, and then we headed up into the “hook” at Cape Lookout. We found the Blitz and had it to our self’s for 20 minutes and caught a couple more while in there, then back down to Beaufort Inlet where ben went one for two to bring his daily total for today to 11 Albies hooked up on fly, and six landed while using 15 pound class tippet.
The awards banquet at the “NC Aquarium” (Sponsor) in Atlantic Beach was great, the whole community showed up to support ” Project Healing Waters” along with sharing the fellowship of an awesome day in our sport. Tommy Bennett, with son Thomas as his angler won the Overall fly division catching 18 Albacore on fly, Ben Bowditch was second releasing 6 Albies on fly. In the juvenile fly division, Jake Vie, won with his dad, Cary Vie running his boat “Natural Fly.
I would like to take a minute to recognize all of the sponsors who generously supported this event, it could not happen without their generosity. To John Snipes and his team of Volunteers, including Chris Thompson, John Mauser, Tommy Bennett, Chuck Laughridge, Gary Debiel, all of the people who donated there time on Thursday to take our Heroes fishing, and many more who I forgot to mention. Also, Rick Pope, Wanda and Gary Taylor, Bob Clouser, Beau Beasley, and the TFO team for being the event sponsor. A wonderful event, this is why I love my job! Stay tuned fro more fly fishing reports from Paradise!