My First Tailer in the Grass

My First Tailer in the Grass (Charleston, SC)

I have been on 12 or so fly fishing trips to Charleston in the last year and a half. Out of those 12 trips I have pulled out only 3 redfish on the fly. I may be biased, but I believe I am a pretty decent fly caster. However, I will say in the my last 3 or so trips I have really started to understand where to cast, how to put it where I want in 1 or 2 false casts, and also how to strip the fly (just how they like it). Probably the 3 most important techniques to know when trying to catch a redfish on the fly.

Just on a side note, I went fishing on the fourth of July with live bait on a carolina rig. We happened to run into a school of reds and I casted the live bait right in the middle of all of them. In 30 minutes I had caught 3 redfish. It was a ton of fun, but I got really antsy in thinking about my next fly fishing trip. 

So I finally scheduled a guided trip with my buddy (Capt. Harry) in Charleston. We get on a semi flooded flat and then we see our first tailer in the grass. A very happy red I might add. I put it in front of the fish 3 times but he didn't see the fly. Then on the fourth cast I get it in front of him again and BAM! I strip set the crap out of that thing! Boom... the fight to keep it out of the thicker grass begins. We end up getting it in the boat and it happens to be my biggest fish on fly to date. A nice 32" tailing redfish. I am naturally screaming like a little girl out of excitement.

This was a shocker, especially since it was the first redfish that we saw that day. Let alone all of my bad experiences and long strain of bad luck with fly fishing for tailers in the grass in the past. Once I couldn't get the fly to break through the grass, let alone in front of the fish. Another time the biggest redfish I have seen in my life is tailing, however 20 mph winds were blowing straight at me and we were just out of reach, then when the fish comes close enough my line goes over the fish and boom he's outta there. Then another time I made a tailer turn completely around to bite the fly and he's on- only to break off 2 seconds later. Other countless opportunities ended in spooking the fish.

So I don't know what happened this particular day, but all the stars were aligned and I got to experience something I've always wanted to. And it was freakin sweet.

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1 comment

You earned that fish man. Good company, bow ready, the cast, the strip…took the Harry’s instructions and applied them in real time and it was an EPIC strip set.


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