Another Fall Night To Remember – CJ Rice

The hard blowing wind seemed to have quieted the Narragansett action. I stayed home Wednesday and heard the fish were scarce that night. Last nights opening flood was something akin to a post-apocalyptic nuclear holocaust movie.No breeze, no moon and the sky, the sea and the rocks, were all dark.First cast, a bump and miss, then nothing for the next hour. Lifeless shallow water, lifeless deep water – nothing. Moving south, I set up in the skinny.About the fourth cast, my current favorite, a loaded blurple Redfin took a mild hit, a soft shake and then all hell broke loose.The power and weight of the fish was immediately evident as she broke hard for deeper waters. Off balance, I planted my feet on the beach ball rock and hung on, startled by the screaming drag.After what seemed much to long a run, I had a gnawing concern that I was giving too much line and considered palming the spool.  Then the run stopped.You could hear a pin drop.  The night was still and the surf barely splashing. She was too close to a reef, I layed into my rod butt to turn her.  My rig made sick stringed noises, the taught loaded braid on ceramic. I was grunting and not gaining much line, maybe a few yards and here comes another run.Got a good shake as she slowed, then slack, more slack, and more slack!NO, NO, NO!I cranked wildly praying to come tight but up came the lure with a mangled 6/0 Gami siwash bent wide open.I have gone through Mustads and VMC’s looking for strong sticky hooks.You pay top-dollar for gear hoping to escape the dreaded tackle failure. Badly hurting,  I lined up like a goat after a dropped kickoff return.With limited tools in my bag for the skinny water, I tried a bone Redfin, then a blurple needle, nothing.The growing pain from the drop was beginning to blossom and ruin the outing.Reluctantly, I deployed my dependable Mag Darter, concerned the 2/0 4X VMC would be no match for such fish.Out it went, first cast, second cast and third.  Then on the fourth cast, a moderate bump just like the first fish.I was thankful for a schoolie at that point and excitedly set the hook.After a hard exhilarating fight, I parked the 27lber in the boulders.While the fish is not a typical trophy, it was my best of the season and a deeply satisfying conclusion to a quality fish drought.The VMC bent but held, barely attached at the hinge of the jaw.Felt like the good Lord gave me back the dropped fish.

Jos 10:13And the sun stood still, and the moon stayed, until the people had avenged themselves upon their enemies. Is not this written in the book of Jasher? So the sun stood still in the midst of heaven, and hasted not to go down about a whole day.

In defense of  the failed Gamakatsu, the hook point was heavily burred and likely had insufficient purchase due to a square hit on the jaw bone. I could not get a bump fishing another .25 mile of shore. Ran into a few buddies and heard their accounts of slow fishing on the gansett shore.  Tuesday’s quantity was tremendous but I would give the edge to Thursday’s quality. – Another Fall Run night to remember.

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