Fishing Report – Wading for Bonefish

After spending the day sailing and not seeing a single dolphin, I decided to wade the flat on the western edge of Boca Chica at sunset.  At sunrise two days earlier, I saw two fish tailing on the flat here while walking to the marina shower.  Foolishly, I did not run back to the boat, grab my 8wt, and sling some flies at these fish.  They were either bonefish or small sharks – I couldn’t tell from the distance, but could see small dorsal fins and tails breaking the surface of the water.

I grabbed a pair of rubber booties and my 8wt, put on long pants, and waded out onto the flat.  It was a learning experience.  The bottom of these sand and rubble flats are covered in turtle grass, sea cucumbers, and upside-down jelly fish known as cassiopea.  I was warned about the jellyfish, which were everywhere along the bottom of this expansive flat.   I thought the booties would save me from the jellyfish.  They didn’t.  I made the mistake of not tucking my pants into my footwear, and very soon after entering the water, my ankles were itching and burning.

With visions of the bonefish/sharks from a couple days earlier, I stuck it out, positioning myself at the intersection of two small channels, and waiting to intercept a fish.  I found that, if I didn’t move, the stinging would stop.  So I stood in the middle of the flat like a heron – head turning back and forth looking for a wake, tailing fish…anything.  I did have some action, but only from baby snapper running up the flat with the incoming tides.  No bonefish, and no sharks.  I kept at it as the sun set, and the winds whipped the mangroves.

I need to save up for the Bahamas…

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