Things That Aren’t Tailing Redfish

I don’t understand the salt life. Not when it comes to fly fishing, at least.  Anglers from all walks of life have had astounding successes, yet for me it remains the Kobayashi Maru.  I can’t for the life of me unlock the magic that I see on my instagram feed.  Have you ever checked out what Austin Orr brings to hand?  What do I have to compare?  This.  It’s really not fair.  I want to catch a tailing drum so bad.  To sight, stalk, and cast to a tail would be a joy; one that I have only had happen once.  I don’t even need to hook or catch it (though I would not turn down the invitation)…  I could feel much better about my intelligence level if I merely found the opportunity.

When I am shuffling my feet through knee deep bay water, it is tails I am in search of.  That’s how I want to catch them, or at the very least attempt to catch them after all.  I have not found what I was looking for to date, but I have learned many small lessons along the way.  For one, mullet are to red fishing what squirrels are to deer hunting.  Another lesson is stingrays don’t like to be stepped on.  But mostly I’ve learned just how many red herrings one can find while searching for drum of any flavor.  May I present, a list of tachycardic objects I have spent an embarrassing amount of time stalking in the pursuit of my goals.



8) The exposed corner of a discarded bag of sunchips, any flavor.

7) That rock in the middle of the bay I swear wasn’t there a few minutes ago.

6) Deviously placed broken oyster shells.

5) &$@%#* mullet.

4) Renounced bobbers still tethered to their sinkers.

3) An extremely shallow and possibly dying Hardhead catfish.

2) An odd partially submerged survey marking flag.

and most annoying

1) An unfairly undulating pelican’s tail feather.



  6 comments for “Things That Aren’t Tailing Redfish

  1. September 27, 2015 at 08:29

    Oh, I can relate. I have a friend that spent 45 minutes casting to an intermittently rising brown trout only to finally hook it and discover that it was a cottonwood root “undulating” in the current.

    Let’s keep trying.

    • OneBugIsFake
      September 27, 2015 at 18:09

      Indeed. I can’t wait to give it another shot.

  2. September 27, 2015 at 20:53

    I hate mullet. I hate figuring out tides. I hate hoisting the friggin’ 75lb fishing kayak on the roof of my SUV, I hate doing all over again after a long day of paddling. I hate the thick mud that will consume your entire leg with a simple misstep while wading in the marsh. I hate alligators. And mosquitoes. And snakes. I hate looking at shit-eating grip ‘n grins on Facebook holding up 30″ reds while I count myself lucky to catch a freakin’ 12″ seatrout. I hate everything about chasing reds.

    That said…

    The rush of having tailer within casting distance makes all of it worth it.

    Except the snakes, fuck them.

    • OneBugIsFake
      November 28, 2015 at 22:35

      So sorry I didn’t reply to this comment sooner!
      You are singing my song, brother. I don’t have much issue with snakes here on this side of the Gulf, though.

  3. September 28, 2015 at 07:54

    I too am trying to figure out the salt game. I’ve also spent an inordinate amount of time casting to things not fish. Carry on soldier.

    • OneBugIsFake
      November 28, 2015 at 22:36

      So sorry I didn’t reply to this comment sooner! Georgia is a great state to be a fly angler in. Hopefully one of us will make it in the club aND share the secrets.

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