Kayak Fail + Mangrove Snapper Success

 
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It’s November and some of the canals of Big Pine Key are covered with a thick blanket of sea grass. The sun was rising, Amanda and I were on our way out to fish the Gulf and were taking it slow through our neighborhood canals. It’s a short but pretty ride. Nurse sharks, barracuda, horseshoe crab, parrot fish, snapper and bait fish make these waters a home. Occasionally you'll see the federally protected Key deer swimming across the waterway towards small mangrove filled islands. The winter also brings the manatees our way.

A Key Deer swimming across our canal at sunrise

A Key Deer swimming across our canal at sunrise

Stuck in our kayak with piles of sea grass around

Stuck in our kayak with piles of sea grass around

We were almost almost out of our canal when we looked down and saw a large school of mangrove snapper. "Wow, we have to come back to catch these fish,” we both said simultaneously! But you can’t just anchor a boat in the middle of the canal and we had plans to fish the Gulf that day. On the ride out, we start thinking of a plan to come back the next day when we remember we have a tandem fishing kayak in storage.

Emily releasing a juvenile mangrove snapper

It’s been some time since we pulled the kayak out, probably before Hurricane Irma, but we figured this was a perfect opportunity. Although our kayak is equipped to hold fishing gear, we’ve only used it for sight-seeing around Big Pine. After loading the kayak, we put it in the water and started paddling out.

We decided to take the scenic route to our fishing spot. It wasn’t as easy as we had thought. We quickly found ourselves stuck in very thick sea grass and nowhere to go. It took synchronized teamwork but we finally landed at our destination and found the snapper in the same spot they were the day before! Click here to watch the video below to see just how hard it was to reach this school of snapper.

xoxo,

The Gale Force Twins