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Messages - Finn Maccumhail

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1
Looks like I might be dropping out again on this trip...going to Norway now :(
Matt

Hope you're racking up the frequent flyer miles dude. Maybe get into some Atlantic salmon or steelhead or whatever the big trout-looking things those crazy Vikings fish for.

2
Outing Chat / Key West tarpon report
« on: August 17, 2015, 10:09:24 AM »
So the Minister of War & Finance and I had a nice vacation in Key West this past week. Got in early Monday the 10th and came home yesterday.

Monday was beach/pool time and the Duval Crawl. Your's truly was in fine form. Somehow I got pulled up on stage at a great bar called Irish Kevin's to partake in a contest to see who could down a pint of Guinness the fastest. I was about 2 sheets to the wind at this point and then the dude running the contest decides to torpedo my pint with about 2 shots worth of Jameson- whoa nelly this is gonna hurt. Anyway, I posted a respectable time of 6.4 seconds but some 22-year old kid from University of Florida, who didn't have his Guinness torpedoed downs his in about 3.5 seconds. He's still competing on the regular tour, I've evidently moved on the to the "masters" division.

Some non-fly fishing action in the interim as I split a trip with a buddy and he was on the bow when he took this permit on a live crab out in the Marquesas (he doesn't fly fish but I'm working on converting him). Then we took the ladies offshore Thursday and got some nice mahi (plus feeding tarpon at the docks) but Friday & Saturday I went out with Capt. John O'Hearn. John is a well known guide down there and is the dude running the boat/poling in this video: https://vimeo.com/83816888

Friday I took Mrs. Finn along. She didn't really want to fish but wanted to see what all the fuss was about. To her credit she was a total trooper. It was super calm and hot. We killed about 3/4 of a case of water and 6 32oz bottles of Gatorade.

We left the ramp at 6:30 Friday morning and headed to some flats where he'd been seeing tarpon and were looking for rollers as the sun came up. He said this time of year most of the big girls have moved on but there are still plenty of poon in the 40-70# class. Throwing my 10wt and little tiny flies (for tarpon anyway) on size 2 hooks. John said he's a stickler for using IFGA leaders. Which means a 16# class tippet of at least 15" and bite tippet of no more than 12". He's so hard core about it he's got 2 little marks tattooed on one shin (that he did himself with a fish hook and India ink) to mark the proper length for the bite tippet.

Anyway we head into the back country where we're looking for rollers until the sun gets high enough to sight-fish them. We pole up to where we see some rolling and I make a cast at a roll, strip, strip, BAM! And damnit, she's gone. Reel it in and there's the telltale curlicue at the end of the bite tippet- the knot failed. And it was the guide who tied it on. He was apologetic and was OK with me busting his balls over it the rest of the day.

We see one other big tarpon (easily a 100# fish) in the back country flats but I rushed my first shot and was off-line as the fish was slowly moving away and when I lifted my fly off the water to make a second shot the sound spooked her and she took off. Soon the back country flats  quiet down as the sun gets higher and it's too hot on the flats so we move oceanside on the white sands out in front of Ballast Key (about 15mi west of Key West https://www.google.com/maps/place/Ballast+Key,+Florida+33040/@24.520875,-81.9646565,1816m/data=!3m1!1e3!4m2!3m1!1s0x88d1cf37fbb9bbbf:0xee8b8e2d37e7fe71).

Here we found a ton of smaller tarpon up to about 50#.

I got 3 more to eat but each one of them either broke me off on the hookset or I hit bone and they spit the hook. I had several more flat out refusals and a couple where the dang needlefish beat a tarpon to the fly.

Saturday morning it was just me on the skiff and it was not nearly as calm and we had crap light but we found the tarpon again working bait balls out on the white sand in front of Ballast Key.

So about 8:45 Saturday morning after getting some refusals John says, "there she is, 1 o'clock 40 feet out, 2 of 'em coming right at you" (I had been looking the other direction and they came onto the white sand off a darker bottom) and I make a snap-shot cast strip, strip, SHE ATE IT! And then all hell breaks loose. She's jumping and cartwheeling and stripping drag. After about a 10 minute fight we bring her alongside the skiff, it's about a 45# poon and John grabs the leader. My first official tarpon catch. But, as he's about to go from the leader to grab the mouth for some pics, out pops the fly and she's gone. WOW! What a rush.

The bite tippet is shredded so we tie on a new one and wait. I got another one to eat but she must have gotten the tippet down into the corner of her mouth because she bit through 50# bite tippet like a pair of scissors. Then we had some weather come up and we had to wait it out.

Finally, about 12:30 we're sitting in in almost the exact same spot as the first fish and I'm sitting down on the casting platform having a drink when John says, "there she is, 3 o'clock, 30 feet out, heading to the back of the boat" I throw my Gatorade into the cockpit and rush out a short backhand cast that lands 6' in front of the poon. A couple strips across her vision and she turns to follow and inhales the fly not 15' from the skiff. I come tight and rather than jumping she heads for the bottom and runs out to sea. She ran through all kinds of sargassum patches, tried to wrap me around a lobster trap buoy, and just ran. After about 20 minutes we get her alongside the boat and John grabs the leader when she decides to make another dive and CRACK! she snaps my Scott Tidal 10wt at the first ferrule above the handle. We try to hand-line her up but the tippet pops and she swims off. Oh well, she was an official catch and went about 70#. I ain't even mad about the rod.

At this point I decide I should go ahead and close on a high note and we head back in for celebratory beers for the first 2 tarpon I've officially landed even though I don't have pics- I have the memories.

Rather than posting all the pics here's a link to the slideshow. Password is: keywest

http://s719.photobucket.com/user/dfstarr/slideshow/Key%20West%20August%202015

3
Outing Information Only / Re: July Outing - Port O'Connor One-Fly
« on: August 05, 2015, 08:38:50 PM »
Pics? Report???

4
Outing Information Only / Re: White Oak Bayou (July 11th, 2015)
« on: July 17, 2015, 09:04:43 AM »
We have a recipe for that:

Story followed by recipe


Puck

I'd try plecos if it came from an actual marsh or lake but there's no way in hell I'm eating anything out of the Houston bayous.

5
General Discussion / Soon...
« on: July 14, 2015, 07:46:28 AM »

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Outing Information Only / Re: White Oak Bayou (July 11th, 2015)
« on: July 13, 2015, 09:03:40 AM »
That's a plecostomus. A/k/a "armored catfish."

It's an invasive that's actually pretty damaging to the ecosystem because they burrow into the banks and degrade the water quality with their rooting around.

If you can, remove from the water and kill them- leave them to rot on the bank. http://www.texasinvasives.org/animal_database/detail.php?symbol=9

7
Outing Information Only / Re: White Oak Bayou (July 11th, 2015)
« on: July 02, 2015, 09:35:35 AM »
Front pond

8
Outing Information Only / Re: White Oak Bayou (July 11th, 2015)
« on: July 01, 2015, 09:58:58 AM »
YYYYYYYEEEEEEEEESSSSSSSSS

Yes they are.

Took the rib there this past Saturday for her casting lesson with Marcos. Beautiful morning. I took my vintage 6wt Fenwick glass rod too. It really feels more like a 3-4wt in graphite. Anyway, he helped me tweak a couple things in my casting stroke because when I need to get out past about 70 feet or just make a 50 foot cast INTO the wind I tend to try and overpower my cast and throw tailing loops.

I got to fool around a bit and caught one nice, fat bluegill and had a bass break me off on a stick-up.

9
General Discussion / Re: Scott Tidal rod
« on: July 01, 2015, 09:54:16 AM »
The wife already busted me when I bought the 10wt.

I had stopped into FTU to get a couple things before my Florida trip and I had been planning on getting the TFO TiCRX in 10wt to be able to hit longer casts. I have a 10wt TFO Mangrove that's fantastic inside 50-60ft but it practically buckles past that. Anyway, I got to bullnaughty wordting with Jim about the rods and he says, "have you cast the new Tidal?" I say "no, let's go out back and check it out."

5 minutes with it and I was sold.

Anyway, last week the rib happens to look at the bills more closely than normal and says, "Dan, did you spend $600 at Fishing Tackle Unlimited?"

My response, "Baby, I don't know what you're talking about."

Busted.

Oh well, she didn't get mad. Her response to me was basically, "As long as you're closing deals, I don't care that you spend money."

That being said, I still need to buy a GPS, marine radio, and push pole for the boat. That will easily be over $1000 so the new 8wt will have to wait.

10
General Discussion / Re: rio or SA for sink tip
« on: June 26, 2015, 02:47:53 PM »
I've used rio and SA lines for freshwater stuff and liked them.  Anybody have any suggestions on a good 8wt full sink tip line from SA or Rio to use in the salt?

I had a friend turn me on to the Teeny fly lines. TS-250 or 350 for an 8wt. It's a floating running line with a sinking head that sinks about 8" per second for the 350. IIRC, the 250 is for 6-8wt and the 350 is for 8-10.

11
General Discussion / Re: Scott Tidal rod
« on: June 25, 2015, 08:04:35 PM »
Can't speak to the 8 but I have a Tidal in 10. It's a cannon and definitely worth more than the price tag. Easily able to pick up 60' of line off the water but still loads easily for short, quick shots.

I'm considering getting one in 8wt too but if I bring home another rod now the rib might kill me.

12
Outing Information Only / Re: Anahuac Flats - August 22
« on: June 23, 2015, 03:47:57 PM »
Jesus tap-dancin' Christ- y'all pick the worst weekends for me. That will be Jake's 1st birthday party. Plus, I'm fishing Key West the 14th & 15th. Otherwise this would be perfect to break in the new sled.

Seriously, my older boy, Brady, was born 7/21 and the younger, Jake was born 8/25. So I'm pretty much out for anything the weekend before or after that until I know when the rib has planned the party.

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Outing Information Only / Re: White Oak Bayou (July 11th, 2015)
« on: June 22, 2015, 04:19:48 PM »
Golden- I haven't made it to the ponds recently. Is the water still as clear as it was when we first started fishing them?

14
Outing Information Only / Re: July Outing - Port O'Connor One-Fly
« on: June 22, 2015, 08:37:35 AM »

I know your have young boys so hopefully they'll love the outdoors as much as you and will afford you more time on the water, nothing better than the family setting.  :D


I've started the 4-year old. He's a little young for the saltwater trips yet, and really any of the FW trips too, other than the ones down to 7 Lakes. Hopefully I can get him out there in the fall. These are a couple months old. And next weekend I've got the Minister of War & Finance signed up for a casting lesson with Marcos.












15
Outing Information Only / Re: July Outing - Port O'Connor One-Fly
« on: June 18, 2015, 01:46:30 PM »
Gonna have to miss this one unless y'all want to explain to my little boy why daddy missed his birthday.

Plus, I expect I'll have to run to Florida around this time to pick up the new sled.

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