I had a little bit of a late start today going fishing. I was reasonably certian that with it being a solo trip that I could limit out quickly and be done.
The bait fish schools were out in force. The schools are a feeding frenzy as tiny glass minnows gather and attract larger fish. The water will turn frothy white with all of the feeding activity.
I stopped briefly to toss a tiny mirror lure into the fray on very light tackle but got no takers so I proceeded out to my spot. I anchored and set my lines out. 5 minutes later my starboard side rod bowed over double and the reel started screaming as a fish lit out for parts unknown. With a hop and a skip I crossed the deck and had the rod in hand and engaged the fighting drag on the reel and.....Son!....The Fight Was On!
The fish started a rapid run off the starboard side and suddenly ahead of the fight I was amazed to see a giant king skyrocket from the water. The fish jumped nearly 6' above the surface but covered a distance of about 25'. At the nearest point he was about 10' off the starboard side of the boat. I was stunned as in atypical fashion his tail end spun and he reentered the water tail first. As I was witnessing this the fish I was fighting skyrocketed as well. I could see my hook rig in his mouth as he traced nearly the same path as the previous fish. What was stunning about this one was the huge brown shadow that was just about two feet behind this king. As the fish took to the air the huge shark's dorsal surfaced as he followed just under the surface.
I was in complete awe and was very concerned that I was going to loose my fish to the shark. The speed in which the animal moved was incredible. The shark was very obviously a hammerhead between 6' and 8' long and he was in full view as he raced past the boat. Just after the king reentered the water there was a flurry of activity and all you could see was white salt spray and brown shark fins. I kept my line tight and the king sounded. The fight of the fish changed from one of escape to a more typical battle. The king expended the last of his energy running into my anchor line. One of my hooks wrapped around the line and the big king just floated, exhausted by the dual fights for survival. I looked around for the shark and knew I had to act fast. Keeping the line tight I lifted the anchor rope to bring the king nearer to the surface. I did not have time to get the gaff and was fishing solo. I got the king within a foot of the surface and careful to keep my hand away from the sharp end of the fish I grabbed the tail and quickly flipped the fish into the boat.
Having seen the speed of the shark I was concerned that he may zip in from an unseen location as I was grabbing the fish. The king was a huge one and I got him on ice and another bait in the water.
Moments later both rods bent double and gave out with a simultanious scream. I grabbed the nearest and engaged the fight and flipped the other reel into fighting drag. "WoooHoo! This is what it is all about!" I screamed to a nearby boater and his bikini clad companion. I was engaged with a fight on one rod and the other was bent double. I fought a bonita to boatside and flipped him into the cooler. Bonitas, also known as little tuny, are very bloody fish and are not recommended for eating but make great baits especially for sharks. I grabbed the other rod and soon had another bonita to boatside to complete the double. I released this one.
Moments later I had both rods baited and out again. I walked forward to grab a water from my food cooler. As I was pulling the bottle from the wrapper my starboard rod and reel began screaming again. I dropped my water bottle in my seat and engaged the fight on another king. This one was somewhat smaller than the first and I managed to boat him with the aid of the gaff.
I was limited out on kings and left the last one hooked in the cooler so I could get my other rod in before it hooked up. What a great day of fishing!
As I got back to the dock I could see that K.C. had escaped the yard and was sitting out in the lagoon neck deep waiting for me to return.
I have some pics for today that I will post soon although, unfortunately, I didn't get any photos of the shark or the flying mackerals. Right now though I have to cleaned up and get ready for work. I'll be working late tonight.
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