Kayak angling adventures where there might be some catching involved or fishing. In some cases the fish might throw the hook I this situation this is known as a 'Uff Da'. Another definition of this Scandinavian phrase is to express a surprise. So 'Uff Da' can be a statement for the surprise of landing your personal best fish.
Sunday, August 4, 2013
The Second Leg of the Atlantic Division for the IFA Kayak Tour
The experience that Lewis and I had on Saturday at Priest
Landing on Skidaway Island really should not be considered a bust. This area of
the Wilmington River would be a great area for future IFA Kayak Tours in
Savannah, GA when the tides are correct to launch and to get off of the water
for the weigh in. So Saturday night we decided to launch from the Lazaretto
Landing on the Lazaretto Creek on Tybee Island. From there we will head left
from the landing; I would try some top water action using the Live Target
Mullet Surface plug drifting to the area where the South Channel and the Savannah
River meet basically.
I did not get any action using the surface lure while
drifting the Lazaretto Creek. I then proceeded to paddle across the South
Channel and drift towards the Cockspur Island Lighthouse.
The Cockspur Island Lighthouse was built between 1837 and
1839. New York architect, John Norris had been contracted to supervise the
construction of an illuminated station. In 1854 the structure had been
destroyed by a hurricane. The tower was rebuilt on the same foundation. At the
start of the American Civil War, the light was temporarily extinguished. April
1862, Union forces stretched along the beach at Tybee Island started a
bombardment of Fort Pulaski. This resulted in a thirty hour siege of the fort
with the Cockspur Lighthouse in the middle. Soon after the war’s end, the
beacon was relit and painted white for use as a day mark. Man, not nature, extinguished
forever the little light since the South Channel of the Savannah River could
not handle the larger freighters. The increasingly busy Savannah port routed
vessels to the deep North Channel.
In this area we met up with five other yak anglers
participating in the IFA Kayak Tour. They were catching some nice speckled
trout in the 15 to 17 inch range. I tried casting into the fast outgoing
current but was not getting any hits. I had to figure a way to anchor long
enough to be able to keep my lure in the strike zone for the trout. The area
was already crowded with the other five anglers so it was not possible unless
one wanted to infringe on them. Uff da; as an angler this would not be a
respective or ethical thing to do in a tournament or even when just fishing. So
I decided to move on to look for some monster redfish or a stray speckled trout
So I paddled towards the area of Fort Pulaski known as the
Point of Fort Pulaski. Ideally you what to fish this area with an incoming tide
working your way to the oyster reefs south of the rock jetties for redfish and
flounder. I worked my way along the spartina grass shoreline of the Cockspur
Island casting towards the tall grass. I got to one section and noticed some of
the spartina grass moving like something was swimming through the grass. The
next thing I see is this huge head raise out of the water; uff da; a manatee
feeding in the area. So I left the huge Sea Cow alone and moved on past. As I
worked the grass line, I managed to have a huge copper color swirl in the chocolate
milk that I was fishing in. I set the hook and had a short fight with looked
like to me a 30 inch redfish. Uff da; could have been the biggest redfish for
the tournament. I had to re-hook the D.O.A C.A.L. Airhead white in color with a
chartreuse colored tail. While re-rigging another Airhead, I hear something
roaring behind me. In this shallow water I had a series of walls of water that
were white capped waves about two feet tall getting ready to push me into the
As I got close to the oyster reef, I got a hit on the D.O.A.
C.A.L. Shad gold in color. Working the fish to the surface I noticed that I had
a nice flounder. While I got the Ego net into the water to bring the flounder
onto the Big Tuna; he threw the hook and slowly swam back to the bottom. I
tried this area a little longer but I was not getting any more hits. I decided
to move onto another section.
I started hitting the various little oyster mounds hoping
for a redfish or a trout. There was one section that I kept hearing and seeing
something that gave the impression that there was a redfish in the area. Lewis
also was in this area and got hung up on some oyster shells. He peddled up to
the snag and got is Z-Man free. When he was drifting backwards he noticed
several redfish but he did not spook them off. He casted towards one of them; twitched
the lure, uff da he had fish on. This fish provided Lewis with somewhat of a
sleigh ride while he was standing fighting the fish. Unlike my red this spot
tail managed to get netted and measured.
Lewis has a nice 27 inch redfish. Then he asked me an uff da
question; he was wondering if he should try to catch a bigger redfish. I
explained to him that he would be better off looking for a speckled trout that
is at least 13 inches. Since the IFA Kayak Tour is a fishing tournament that
requires the angler to catch one redfish and one spotted trout both haveto be in the slot limit or bigger as in a
kayak fishing tournament we are a Catch, Photo, and Release (CPR) event. So
Lewis went off in search of the trout. For me, I continued to search out any
spot tail or sea trout. Eventually, I made my way back to the Lazaretto Launch
and Lewis was close to the ramp area still searching but he had no luck.
We decided to load up and head in for the Captain’s Meeting
back at Hogan’s Marina. We got back at 2 PM and still had to wait till 3 PM for
the check in to close and the winners announced.
The top three winners were:
1.Roger Bump with a total length of a redfish and
speckled trout of 58.5 inches, 2.Elizabeth Saylor with 51 inches, and 3.John Chapman with 45.25 inches.
Top Junior Angler went to Austin Leggett with a 28 inch
Roger Bump was recognized as having the largest redfish at
38 inches. He reported fishing the shipping channel using a heavy jig head with
a six inch gulp curly tail jigging in 45 feet of water.
Nathan Raycroft had the largest trout at 25.75 inches.
As for my fishing buddy; Lewis Brownlee, he came in ninth place
with his 27 inch redfish.
Congrats to all the fifteen yak anglers that managed to do
some type of catching out of the 28 anglers that participated.