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A Fish Story: Panhandle to Panhandle

  • 3 min read

A Fish Story: Panhandle to Panhandle

As anglers, there are destinations that go hand in hand with fishing meccas. Montana, NewZealand, Alaska, Argentina, the list goes on but I can almost guarantee that Florida would be onthat list as well. When Alex and the team told me I was going to Florida it didn’t seem real. It’sone of those things that you’re told that you really don’t believe until you are at the airport at 5am saying “what the hell did I get myself into.” A travel day from hell goes hand in hand withevery fishing adventure, right?

Eventually, after landing and heading straight to the nearest Publix for necessities like Fried Chicken and Beer we got to the Air Bnb where we met up with the guys. From zoom calls, phone calls, & social media in general it felt great to meet all the guys in person. After plenty of beverages and fish stories, everyone tails off to bed with butterflies and the smallest hint of jitters for the morning. It’s one of those scenarios you put yourself into knowing you have the skill to accomplish it but are so naive to the actual activity itself. At least that’s how I felt going to bed that night. But then your alarm rings, you splash some cold water on your face, grab a coffee, and all of a sudden it’s just another day except this day you are fishing in southern Florida for fish you’ve never even caught, hell never even seen before.

Putting the Skiffs in as Tyler put it is very similar to putting the drift boats in for trout guys. There’s that anticipation and excitement that I find it very hard to replicate with a lot of other scenarios. Everyone is excited, everyone is kind of nervous, and then you hammer the throttle down and you're doing what you love without a second thought of it. That first 30 minutes to an hour I don’t know if I stopped smiling. Ear to ear. It was one of the coolest things I’ve ever been a part of. Driving 40mph with good buddies through the swamp on a perfect spring day, I mean what makes that better? A few fish? Well shit, they absolutely just tied the whole day together for me.

After catching a small mangrove snapper and seeing some other fish in the area I was feelingmore and more confident that if I kept up on what I was doing eventually it would all have to lineup. And after a spot change and a drive through the jungle it did. We came into a really coolarea with a decent amount of current and we were fishing a windblown point which in the grandscheme of things, is the perfect scenario. I remember placing a cast and taking one strip andscratching my noseand of course, the snook ate it on the pause while I was scratching my nosehaha. But man those fish can pull, I’d say it was about 21”-22” not a monster by any means buthell for my first snook on the fly I will take it.

Snook are so cool, in my mind, they are like an elongated chromed-out Calico Bass. Full of piss and vinegar yet just picky enough to really make you work for them. After the first snook, we kept hammering the bank, and then Boom 2 snook to the boat. But then the tides got funky the fishing slowed down considerably. As we were motoring back the boat sputtered and came to a halt. Boom Motor problems. All the trout guys were saying “that’s why we love drift boats, no motors haha.” Once Jake, Myself, and Connor determined that we would not be riding the boat back we broke out the tow ropes and went on home to call it a day.

The whole experience was something so surreal for me. Growing up fishing, youtube was such a big part of how we got better and learned while not on the water. And to be fishing with awesome dudes in such a special place was like living a childhood dream. So thank you Renegade and Alex and the whole crew for making a little boy’s dreams come true. Onto the next! 

Written by Landen German

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