Captain Billy's Fishing Tales
Some of my favorite stories on fishing are ones experienced with my family. This one occurred only this past tarpon season. I was fortunate enough to have my 19 at the time now 20 year old daughter mate for me for about three weeks. On her first night in Boca she went out on the beach with a group of kids and when she got home she told me that they had gone swimming. I came unglued. Hillary said, "But dad, we weren't skinny dipping." I told her I didn't care. There are alot of sharks that patrol the beaches at night and I don't want you in the water at night clothes or no clothes. Well she gave me the look like, you paranoid old man, and I'm only 39. We'll the next day is her first day as my mate. We are in the pass only five minutes and we're hooked up to about a 160 pound tarpon. As the battle wears on the fish eventually wears down and is coming to the boat. All of a sudden I see him coming a huge shadow, yes an 18' giant hammerhead shark.
The shark strikes the tarpon lifting it out of the water and from the midsection to the tail is gone. The giant spins around and devours the rest of our tarpon. All of this happen quicker than it took me to type it. At this point my loving daughter looks at me with eye's the size of pie plates. I told her, "That's why your dad doesn't want you swimming on the beach at night because that's where he and his buddies are at night." Hill says, "That's why I'm not swimming in the day either."
One of my favorite stories involves an icon for fishing on the west coast of Florida and that is Capt. Mel Burman. I took Mel snook fishing and Mel's rod was spooled with this new line called Power-Pro. Mel's outfit was 8-10 pound class but was loaded with 30# power-pro. I told Mel, "Be careful there are some slobba's in here." No sooner had I spoke these words and POW the man hit Mel it was a 40" plus snook. The fish started running for the mangrove. "Get on him", I screamed. Mel said, "No problem" and started locking down the drag on the 30# power-pro. Then snap. His rod broke into right above the reel seat. I started laughing, that hard belly laugh. At the time Capt. Mel failed to see the humor. But now he tells the story and laughs as hard as I did. And yes I have the pole in my house I just need to get Mel to autograph it.
Folsum of Florida
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