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Time: 2:44:04 PM
Well it took about a week to shake all of the sand out of my ears.
Got over on Thursday and drove to the south end to take a look. Had a bait delivery for the amazing Flexx man so I did not stop and fish. Talked to Martin and he gave me some great insights on the catching.
Drove up north of the cabins to made my bait delivery to Flexx. Got to meet his dad while there. Good to see generations of surf fishing folks. Headed back south of the cabins. There where some great looking holes and rumors of biggins around.
You can drive all the way to the inlet on the south end. Man, what a great looking place. The channel on the inside of the south end has filled in. Last year there was a deep channel just off the beach just past the point of the south end. There is still some deeper water there but not the deep channel as I remember from last year. I am old and fat so the memory of the channel may be somewhat enhanced over time but I do not think the channel was as pronounced as in the past. That being said it looked friggin fishy to me.
I selected my spot on a great looking hole just south of the where one of the drum inlets was in the past. Perfect looking spot. Cast to few times and the Flexx crew set up camp just to the south of me. Around 7 pm i hooked up My Carolina Cast Pro rod bent over double. This was sweet to me because I just had put on the rod a very old Blue Yonder reel. I picked up the rod and I felt the head shake of the fish. Damn….hooking up within the first few hours of getting over was very cool.
Walked this fish down the beach towards Flexx. As a tackle ho, fishing with the old Abu Blue Yonder reel was so sweet. Like finding a old friend. Me and this reel had some adventures together. Striper fishing twenty years ago out of Rudee Inlet in the freezing weather was this reel’s hay day.. Man did she get a work out in those days. Still to this day one of the best casting reels I have ever used.
Ok, back to this decade. I was able to get this drum in the wash almost in front of where Flexx had pulled in to. What a trill. I still get a big rush when you finally get to see the fish in the wash. The big tail of a drum made my heart jump. You never are absolutely sure until you see the fish. This one was NOT a shark. Flexx helped me pull the drum up on the hill and quess what? Ric Flair showed up. For those around the south end that night I can only quess what they where thinking. Was it back to Tuesday night at the old WRAL studios in Raleigh where Mid Atlantic wrestling was taped. Man those where the days. The “woooooooo” where loud and often. High fives where getting slapped around. It was the first time Flexx’s dad had seen a bull pulled up on the beach. (I think)
45 1/2 inch bull. Flexx took and few pictures and we released her back to the ocean. Seeing a drum swim away I always a good thing. Well Mr. Flair headed to a fresh bottle of Woodford Reserve. Ahhhhhhhhhhhh. Life is good.
Went to bed that night with that warm feeling of drum and bourbon in my old head. Thanks again for all the help Flexx.
Stayed in the same spot the entire next day. Around high tide was the bite. Used all of my tags on over slot drum. The bite was around high tide mark. Did not move the entire day. The bite was not hot but you could pick up a drum or two near the tide mark. Set up and fished it hard that night. Broke one off and that was it. Just too the north of me the folks fishing there (Martin) looked like they got into a few biggins.
The weather report had a gale coming. The water was rough and lots of white foam on top. Nothing too bad and in fact rather drummy. Wind was blowing steady 20 to 25. Perfect drum fishing weather. Picked up a few more over sized drum and a few blue fish.
The next morning she was blowing good. Went as south as I could to fish with the wind at my back. Picked up a keeper for the hot grease. I could see the trucks on the north end of Core Banks across the inlet. They where lined up.
The gale showed up but you could still fish the south end. Watched my buddy catch a few more keepers during the blow.
For those who have experienced the super light fluff of very fine sand blowing into every part of your truck and your body this day was for you. If you left your truck sitting in one spot for a few hours you started a new dune. Slept like a baby in the truck tent that night. It was hard to hold facing the ocean with 8 ozs but you could. I would cast about every15 minutes and I figured you got about 4 minutes of prime bait in the water and the rest was washed up the beach.
Did a shrimp and grits dinner with a friend that night which was great. Precooked. All we had to do was to warm it up and enjoy.
Got off on Thursday morning. Thanks to the ferry crew for working with us. It was over washing the island that morning. The ferry landing was a running river. It is always an adventure.
Had some time to think about the future of the island and where things are headed. Folks if you like Portsmouth now without the cabins etc…..you better enjoy it while it last. Things are happening back on the main land. Over the next years we will have a very nice camp ground at the ferry spot. Long gone are the days of Captain Don and the grill there. No reservations just get in line and you would get over.
Things are going to change. Think of what has happened to South Core. It is more popular now than ever. Folks running ATVs up and down the island. More people than ever. Do not get me wrong, I understand progress and the right to make money if you invest in a project. The folks have made a huge investment in the campground and the ferry. They deserve everything they will get in the future. Thank gosh they are operating the Dozie Lee now. Change is certain and it is going to happen on the island. Me, I like the remoteness of what PI is now. I am going to cherish
every trip in the future.
Sorry for the extended post but had a few moments to relive this trip. I think I got one more in me this year.