Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Gulf Shores Day Five

So the water is crystal clear and the waves are pretty much flat calm. Actually that is not usually the norm on the beach at Gulf Shores this time of year. To be honest fishing is typically much better with a little chop and some clouds, but we will take the ultra amazing weather!

We headed to the little lagoon pass today just a couple miles west of Gulf Shores to do some exploring and fishing. They are doing some construction dredging work on the canal that leads to the Ocean and that is going to lead to some dynamite fishing! Here is Drake playing in his heaven! On the beach he either has a tractor in his hand or a live fish. Literally he carries around live fish and loves them, more on that later, for now the tractor:

So basically that has us changing up our normal fishing tactics and we are starting to get a few things figured out. First off is that we are figuring out how wade out to locate and sight fish for giant sheephead right out in the surf. Can't say we have ever done that before, and may not ever get the opportunity to do that again, but that was the only way to catch a fish today and that was so much fun!

Here is the biggest sheephead we have ever caught in over 45 years of fishing the beaches of the gulf. I am only 28 years old, but my family has been vacationing down here since my parents were kids.

So there is a pretty cool story to finally catching this fish, plus another story that could have developed had we realized how special this fish really was. Turns out the Alabama state record sheepshead is 12 lbs 15 ounces caught by Drew Parrish in 2001. If we didn't top the state record with this sheephead, we were really close! Typically the sheephead we catch are about 3-5 lbs with a 7-8 lber being really big. We caught a handful of nice sheephead and also got this other giant that wasn't near the state record, but getting real close to double digits.

So back to the story on how we caught the near state record Boone and Crockett Sheepshead... So I spot this giant sheephead about 100 feet from shore and was casting live shrimp to it about 20 feet away. He came charging in and demolished my shrimp, but I failed on the hook set. Justin came over with his ghost shrimp and hooked up and fought the fish for a bit before it broke his line. We were pretty bummed until the fish came back to the same spot about 10 minutes later.

Justin goes for it and when the fish bit again he actually bit down so hard he smashed his hook closed with one chomp. I have never seen that happen before ever! The fish's jaws were so strong they bent the hook inward! So I go to the fish with my shrimp and get bit and he was off before I had a chance to set the hook. I real in and he had bitten my hook in half!!! Unbelievable what this fish was doing to us and our gear. His jaws just have superfish power.

So the fish is gone again and after 15 minutes of searching around for him I finally give up and head out for another fish. Justin on the other hand hung around the same area and finally the superfish shows up again and this time Justin and his gear performed flawlessly. Bamm and the battle was on. Now if any of you can imagine fighting a 13 lb bluegill you can relate to reeling in a double digit sheepshead on fairly light tackle.

When we finally landed the fish, I found the other half of my hook lodged in its jaw, and Justin removed both of his hooks from its mouth! So anyhow while we were chasing sheepshead, the kids were playing on the beach and Drake was playing with his new best friend:

The boy is completely obsessed with fish, so much so that even I think he is weird. He has to have a fish in his hand most of the time while on the beach:

We catch a lot of trash fish like bluefish, ladyfish, remoras, lizardfish, pinfish, etc. We found this little isolated pond that fills up with water at high tide that we release our trash fish into. The kids LOVE it. Here is Tyden giving this bluefish a new home:

Some more trash fish:

Here is photo that shows a little bit of our fishing setup on the beach:

Ty catches most of the fish!

Was a great day at the Little Lagoon Pass! The kids had a blast and so did the fisherman. We are headed to the Pass again tomorrow morning cause the tide is going to be flowing out hard and the construction workers have dug some very deep holes that will be loaded up with redfish in the morning!

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