Saturday, July 31, 2010


I remain in retirement from the Oriental Rotary Club Tarpon Tournament that began today. I hear that Jimmy on The Bull Pen and Tag A Long Dan have both got fish around the boat, waiting on the bite. Will let you know how things turn out.

Meanwhile, Capt. Ray is blistering the pups and yearlings on this northeast wind and will no doubt get into the big drum this afternoon.

Capt. Brian Harrington is getting geared up to head this direction for the big drum.

Openings with the Down East Guides are very limited from now through the end of September. For the next two weeks, we have guides available Aug. 3, 4 1/2pm, 5, 6, 9, 10, 12, 14 1/2 pm.

Friday, July 30, 2010


Stretched Out!

This was a BIG tarpon.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Wilbur's tarpon

Tarpon number one....

.....and to make sure that the jinx is dead, tarpon number 2:

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

The curse is broken

I'm starting to get my mojo back. Congrats Wilbur for breaking the jinx. After 15 years, we finally got our tarpon......then did it again. 2 for 2. This pic is from yesterday afternoon with Glenn Hudson.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

2 for 3

Two for three, after a morning of beating the banks (couple of 3-4 pound trout).

Monday, July 26, 2010

Last piece of bait

Pretty good sign of big drum around from the reports coming in. After 12 hours of tarpon fishing through a SW gale we broke down and went drum fishing with our last bag of bait. Bait-stealers were pretty bad, it was 7 pm and we were down to the last 6 baits on 6 rods. A few minutes after launching them, I began to reel in the rods that were baitless when we got a bite on the last remaining rod. Glad we got 'em, but it was close, nice 50 incher.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Tarpon fishing with jetlag

Got mine in the air after fishing for less than 10 minutes yesterday, things came a little too tight on the second to bow to 'em. Had another suspicious bite over the next 10 hours of fishing.....oh yeah and about 35 sting rays.

Congrats to Bull Pen who landed one in the sound, thanks for the call, but I got there just in time to urinate on the coals of the fire.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Argentina pics, tarpon fishing with jet lag tomorrow

This was the best trip yet to Argentina, everything went as smooth as silk. As soon as we stepped off the plane, Eduardo was there inside the airport and walked us through immigration/customs/gun check-in and got us on the plane to Cordoba, an hour later we were in Cordoba and on the way to the lodge for a quick lunch and an afternoon of shooting.

Jim in action:

Each year there are more and more doves in the Cordoba region, they are a plague. The mountain roosts are protected and more an more of the lowlands are being converted from pasture to agriculture. They breed yearround and despite hunters shooting literally tens of thousands per day, populations continue to increase.

The first afternoon we shot in the hills as birds were returning to the roosts, a great way to get practice on all angles of shots as doves approached from all directions. The next day was spent in the fields, the flocks of doves were continuous.

Congrats to young Eli Yarbrough who joined the 1000 dove club. In total, the four of us shot over 3000 doves in a day and a half, I didn't contribute that much, just shooting a couple hundred, enough to get my game on and ready for the ducks.

After a full day of dove hunting and fantastic dinner, we got up early the next morning and took a "sleeper van", with full reclining seats. We arrive at the duck lodge for a huge Argentinian steak lunch and an afternoon of duck hunting. We hunted two hunters/blind and each blind was allowed 50 ducks/hunt. One afternoon we did not shoot our limit......but we made up for it later.

Most of the ducks that we shot are Rosey-bills, followed by any of 4 different species of teal, also three different species of tree-ducks, which are my favorite.

Above one of the many teal, below a drake Rosey-bill, which may come in as singles/pairs or large flocks. They decoy a lot like a diver, if you give them one pass, they fully commit on the second.

Above is one of the tree ducks or as they call them, a widgeon. They decoy much like a pintail, high circles, but when they commit, it's straight down, twisting and turning to dump wind off their wings and drop faster. Wait till they are right on top of you, choose your shots well and you should have an easy triple or plugs are necessary in Argentina, best I could do was 4 out of 5 shots.

Jiim "Never Enough" finally got enough!!

Each hunter has a "bird boy" assigned to them, but there is nothing boyish about them. I've never seen someone work so hard, through sometimes knee-deep mud and water, carrying all the decoys, stools, guns and shells. If things are slow, they often take off through the marsh, walking a mile or more in order to stir up the ducks and improve the hunt.


On the way out of the marsh, add to their load as much as 100 pounds of ducks. You have to demand to assist them.
Brazilian Teal wing? A beautiful bird, one of the larger teal.

A South American shoveler

Another teal

Marcelo and Rubin made every effort to pick up every bird that was downed, cripples were chased down and we lost a surprisenly few birds. Rubin took most of the teal for the freezers of his friends and family, most other ducks were distributed to the very appreciative families on the way to and from the fields. At the lodge, ducks were served as appetizers before almost every meal and duck a la orange for dinner one night, otherwise it was steaks, including the famous 2 pound t-bone.

These shots were taken on the last afternoon on a Rosey-bill roost. We had already shot about 30 teal and Jim was mildly satisfied, then they started coming. I have never shot a box of shells so fast in my life. Within minutes we had "our limit" and watched in amazement as hundreds of ducks landed in and around the decoys as Marcelo and Rubin were picking up. As Jim said, "You could've hit 'em with a tennis racket."

Just got back

Pics to come, trip went as smooth as silk, amazing dove hunting and the duck hunting was spectacular.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

No fish that swims.....

No fish that swims is more frustrating. The cummulation of our 13 hour day was the sighting of one fish off of Cedar Island. The conditions were not ideal, plenty of whitecaps, but we were pretty aggressive with our fishing, did not even have a skate bite. New moon? We did catch a skate off South River at about 4 pm.

Over the past two weeks, I've given them very little effort, but in my travels I've seen fish from Brant Island to Dawson's Creek and almost all points in between. I haven't seen a lot of fish, but enough to give them some effort. Yesterday I threw everything that I had at them and fished all locations which I had seen fish in the past couple of weeks.

I think that I'm going to move to Wichard's Beach.......only slightly kidding.

I am taking the week off and going to get my annual fix of wingshooting in Argentina. Pics and report next week, unless I get service from down there.

Anna is standing by the computer and phones to take your reservations.

For August and September drum season, between the full time drum guides: Captains Ray, Greg, Gary, Brian and me. We can still get you on the water, but move fast, on many dates, 4 of the 5 of us are already booked.


Friday, July 9, 2010

5 pound? trout and 50 inch drum

I guess there are a few big drum around. Glad that this one hit the big rod.

A nice yearling:

How big is a 28inch trout? Capt. Gary may catch 'em that size, but I don't see that many, this one hit a drum rig and was released.
Fishing with Capt. Gary:

From earlier in the week:

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Capt. Fred's fishing spot

Capt. Fred Slann just sent me directions to his fishing hole in the attached at the youtube site.

This weekend was decent with fish from 24 to just a tic under 30" to the boat...and we saw a few real studs too. I'd guess we laid eyes on over 80 single and doubles fish that we cast to with the fly...boated 5 real pretty fish on the fly and watched the take on all of them. Because I'm not fishing the grass I'm gettin a good 6hrs of good time on the boat to fish these fish. The thing that seems to be the neatest is you just pole to the fish....not spooky at all.

I wondered what would happen if I cheated and flipped a live shrimp to these fish....i may just check that out!

Anyway, here is a short you tube of me coming off the flats in my Grass Rat...water is less than 14" most of the way!

His long half days are $300, one angler only please.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Congrats to Capt. Gene and Capt. Greg

Pretty work guys, Capt. Gene Wooster, Mobile East Marine, caught the first tarpon of the year in the Pamlico Sound first thing this morning, followed by Capt. Greg Voliva who got one this afternoon. Anna and I left the house on some reconnaissance and saw a few fish in a lot of different places.....but we weren't fishing too hard. Will give them a little more effort this week....

Friday, July 2, 2010

Pics from yesterday

Thursday, July 1, 2010

East wind

East wind in the ocean pretty much sucks, but we weren't fishing the ocean today. In the river and east wind makes the water rise and the "pups" and "yearlings" hit the grass.

I started the morning checking out where I saw those tarpon yesterday, but 15-20 knots of east wind and 2-3 foot chop didn't make it easy. No bites within an hour so we took the tarpon bait to the shoreline and began to work on the pups and yearlings, catching thirty-four 25-35 inchers in about 4 hours. Capt. Gary was doing the same thing about 5 miles away from us. Wow, there are a lot of drum around this year. Every place that we stopped, we caught fish.

Here's a pic of one of Gary's "yearlings".