December 15, 2004
I was at the matanzas pass fishing pier after a long week of work and school. The time had finally come to go fishing. I had just left Bait N’Wait with my live pinfish, and frozen mullet, and I was ready for anything. Taking Big Johns advice, I set up about an hour before high tide, and cast out my 3/0 Penn with a piece of cut mullet into the channel, and just let it sit with the drag set so I could hear it. I left the 3/0 to do its thing, and started working the peirs and structures with a live pinfish. After about ten mins of nothing happening, I decided to loosen my drag on my Penn 4500 SS, (don’t ask my why i did it, i don’t know why) but all of a sudden, pop, there goes my drag know. Needless to say, I was P.O’d. So I left my gear under the supervision of my friend, and drove down to Bait ‘N Wait as fast as I could, to get a new drag knob. John had it, of course, (he seems to have at least one of everything, and his shop is SPOTLESS!!!) and I was back on my way. I got back, and got set up again, and after about 15 mins of working the peirs with the pin, my 3/0 started SCREAMING. I leaped over to it, and hit the fish, and started cranking. It was a good fight, even on that crane, and eventually, a MONSTER REDFISH surfaced, and all the tourists on the pier were yelling “Its a nurse shark, It’s a nurse shark”, I just laughed. I didnt have a tape measure with me, so I took a picture with my camera phone of the fish next to my pole, so I could measure the pole later. I knew one thing for sure, this fish was way too big to keep, so I wished him good luck, and sent him on his way. The crazy thing about the whole story, is that just as I was landing the red, my other pole, which I forgot about, started being dragged into the water. I handed my pole to my fishing buddy jessica, and dived on my spinning rod. I started whaling on this huge snook ( he jumped and i saw him), and he just started trucking on my, and snapped me off right on a dock, I was furious! So thats when I released the red, and so on. All in all, it was a great night fishing, all thanks to Big John at Bait n’ Wait.