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A Flamingo Slam

Headed down to Snake Bight (that's a word, look it up) off of Flamingo, FL today with Charlie. Back on "home turf" so to speak (if 3 hours of driving is my home turn). We weren't sure what we were gonna catch, but we were sure to catch something!


The wind was at 5-10 knots (i.e. that really means 10-20) out of the SE - the worst direction for the southern tip of Florida. Fun. The leeward side of John Kemp Key provided some cover early in the morning, and I caught my first redfish - a couple of pounds and about 16 inches. I'll figure it out once I get the picture. Shortly thereafter I hooked into and landed a good 5 lb. Jack Cravalle that made a number of good runs. Both were hooked on a small sized black/silver Yozuri SS Minnow.

Next, we went to fish some channels - no real luck, though Charlie hooked into a bunch of catfish and a few smaller cravalles. I had him save some jacks because there were some sharks swimming around. After hooking a jack onto a wire-rigged circle hook and coming up empty (the sharks didn't even care when the damn bait landed right on top of them), we paddled around for a bit. Some of the sharks would come right up to the kayak before noticing us and turning in a boil of ocean water.

Having failed to find a good place to fish, we ate lunch and then decided to drift fish a little. Charlie cut the jack in half, and I attached a bobber so that I could basically take a break. The bobber would keep the jack above the sea grasses. Five or ten minutes later, Charlie hooked into something, and I felt my rod (which I'd not been paying attention to) take a small hit. I thought maybe the jack had succeeded in catching some grass, but as I went to jerk it free, the reel sung like a fat lady! Shark on!

The shark made several blistering runs and towed me around the bay like a… I dunno, invent your own acronym. Earlier in the day I'd caught my first redfish, and now my first shark! As I got the bad boy close to the yak, I estimated its length at about 42 inches and its weight at 25-30 lbs. It had a remora attached.


Charlie and I discussed how to get the shark out of the water while he took pictures. I would have been okay with grabbing the shark, but I wasn't sure how a kayak would like the sudden change in center-of-gravity. I told Charlie (who has a sit-inside kayak) that he should pick it up, as he seems more sure of the "hows" of doing so, and handed him my rod. The shark made a few more little runs, but otherwise cooperated. Just as Charlie reached for the leader, and grabbed on, the monofilament busted and the shark was gone. It counts as a "land" because, well, I touched the shark, it was there, and we may not have brought the bad boy on board anyway.

Charlie and I then chased some other sharks, including a nice eight footer that actually took Charlie's bait and hook in a big huge boil. Then I got a headache and paddled in - through even rougher seas - while Charlie tried unsuccessfully to nab a couple of crashing Permit.

So, a Flamingo Slam: Redfish, Jack Cravalle, and Shark. I hope to have the pictures soon. Me and a shark. 🙂

Update: The shark was either a bull shark (first picture) or a sandbar shark (second picture). I'm not sure which.

One Response to "A Flamingo Slam"

  1. Pops and I (and no, I don't call him that) headed down to Flamingo today. I wanted to get in some ocean fishing and the...