Biking and fishing on Little Talbot Island
Trip Start Nov 19, 2007
217Trip End Ongoing
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(Sorry, no pix, the skeeters were so bad that it was hard to stay still around the campground)
Maudie and I set up at our site and found that this park's electrical system was only 20 amps, so once again, we had no park electricity to power the A/C for Maudie. With the generator running and the A/C cranking, I took off for the beach. While peddled and "reading" the shoreline, looking for the telltale signs that Palatka Bob taught me, I passed discouraged fishermen, sunbathers, surfers and beachcombers. After a couple of miles without seeing anyone, I spotted a likely fishing hole and set up with high hopes.
Weeds, weeds and more weeds. Bummer. Back on the bike and further down the beach with the hope that I could find a good spot that had less weed floating in the surf. No luck. A couple of hours later I headed back and stopped at the first spot again. The wind had eased up and the weeds were not moving in as quickly, so I tried again. Bingo, something big had my bait and it was tearing off into the surf. After 3 long runs I could finally see it, a big redfish turning around and taking off again. The sun was starting to go down by the time it was on the beach, 24 inches and about 6 lbs. This was the biggest fish I had ever caught in the surf and it was "in the slot" (a keeper between 19" and 27"). I started wondering how Jodie was going to prepare this highly prized catch as I peddled back with the fish hanging from my handlebars (it was too big for the backpack).
By now, Crazy Fish, my backpack, most of my cloths and the bike all took on the fragrance of fish and bad shrimp. We had become a 6 wheeled fishing vessel and I had my doubts that Crazy Fish would ever smell good again. Dime sized scales kept showing up in the kitchen, bathroom and cabinets. This was not good. My mind kept going back to the miracle of coffee beans and their odor absorbing magic. That was it, fill a few socks with unground beans and put them all around Crazy Fish after a good hard washing. But that could all wait until we were done with our stay.
The next day I biked to the same spot and caught a few jacks and black drum. None of them were keepers, but Bob's tips were proving to be reliable. That night I soaked the backpack and odor laced shorts in soapy water. Crazy fish got a good hard cleaning and the rugs all got beaten and aired out. My bike was rustier than I had ever seen it and the salt was already eating away at the chrome, chain, gears and shifters. I washed and wire brushed it and put chain cleaner and lube on the shopping list along with the coffee beans.
With the moon half full, I went down to the beach for a long evening walk. The warm soft breeze was in the 80s and the stars were out in a clear sky. Nobody else was out and the only other signs of life were lights on boats far off on the horizon. The beach was at low tide and the sand was hard packed without any rocks or shells to think about avoiding. What a memory to hold onto! When I was sure I was alone, I took off my clothes and walked for a couple of hours feeling the warm sea air on my skin. What a wonderful life! I thanked God for getting to experience one of the best nights I can remember.
After we headed for GA, we stopped at a laundramat and washed everything with extra soap. Eurika...all the smell was gone and we could rejoin civilization and meet Jodie without bumming her out.