I just looked at the calendar, and it is already four months into 2013, almost five months removed from doomsday, and finally ready to break out of our Trout filled hibernation, and do the beach thing one more time. However, this year will be a lot different, I have relocated much further North, into a strange land, and will not be stalking the South coast in search of the elusive sicklefin for the first time in ten years. But sometimes you get lucky in life and you run into some people who truly "get it" and are ready and worthy of having the torch passed to them, to hold down the legacy that was left behind. Cody got his feet wet for the first time last shark season, and proved he was really worthy of some of the information handed down toward him, along with his trout fishing borderline cyborg counterpart Adam "Redfisk" Fisk.
They came up to Shark Command Central North, expressing their interest in fishing this season, so we convened, and decided they need to get the right set-ups to get a Team Rebel quality job done. And after much searching, and a lot of headaches, their rods were built, reels were filled, and they were finally ready to hit the surf after one of the longest winters I can ever remember here in Florida.
The weather had finally warmed, and their first day had finally arrived. But there were a couple of setbacks, such as not having a tip for Codys new whopper stopper, and well, no bait. So as soon as Cody got off work he began driving all over the county in search of two items that they could not fish without. The tip was acquired without much incident, and luckily for once, so was the bait, but now the ace to prime time was on, and Cody had to fight through the merciless Southern snowbird rush hour traffic to deploy baits for prime time...
We here at Team Rebel like to tell the truth, no matter how brutal or unsettling might be, so get ready for a quickie about what legnths we go through to catch sharks.
Cody was three cars back in a turn lane, when the light changed, and some guy in a new Mustang decided that he didnt feel the need to move forward. And in true South Florida fashion, Cody gave him the one finger salute and a heavy dose of horn when he got the chance to get around him and go. Well, apparently as soon as Cody did this, the guy took off behind him, and continually harassed him in traffic for the next fifteen minutes or so, screaming many things out his window from behind the PS-1 (Codys truck) which garnered many solitary fingers in response. Cody pulled into a gas station to fuel up to meet Redfisk at the beach where he was waiting, when the Mustang followed him into the gas station. The guy immediately started yelling at Cody from his window while Cody was trying to gas up, and Cody was having none of it. He ran to the mystery mans car who at this point was shouting "you need to chill out!" When Cody started punching him repeatedly in the face while he was trying to roll up his window and get away from the situation. After a good 6-7 shots to the guys face, he tried to speed away, while Cody was still in pursuit on foot. Well somebody called the police at this point, and they were pulling in while Mr. Mustang was pulling out. While they were trying to figure out what was going on, Cody was thrown into the back of a squad car, where he was able to snap this convenient picture, before the police let him go after many bystanders confirmed that the guy followed him in to start the issue. And just like that, he was on his way to deploy.
Cody arrives at the beach with "Albatross" blaring from his speakers and echoing down the still lively streets while Adam rushed to unload to get baits out before nightfall. 40min before dark the first baits were dropped in a menacing looking ocean, when I received a text saying the first baits on season were finally in soak mode.Only fifteen minutes had pased when Adams brand new Avet 80 started screaming, needless to say both of them were in complete shock being 15minutes into the season. A harness-less Adam sat down in the sand, cranked tight and the first fish of the year was hooked up and taking line fast!
Cody called me about 15minutes into the fight and said they were hooked up, and that they saw a Hammer dorsal rise up in motion out far and it was a decent one. I was completely ecstatic by this news, and right before he hung up I yelled "get a good picture!" as the phone line went dead. The shark came in in under 20minutes, and it was LIVID. It was going completely ballistic in the wash, while Cody was trying to work the leader and secure a tail-rope on this guy solo.
After a short and brutal struggle, Cody was able to secure the shark for a moment and remove the hook while they "tried" to take a few pictures. I say tried, because neither of them thought it was a good idea to bring a camera, and apparently their Iphone photo skills are not really up to par, it will be a learning experience for sure, as you can see from these incredible shots taken.
The photo session was short, as they wanted to make sure the shark swam away healthy and quickly. This did not go without incident either, as the shark was "still trying to eat them" all the way till the moment they released it from their grasp. Less than an hour into the season they were on the board with a 10ft range Hammer, very skinny but with freakish appendages.
About 20min goes by and Codys new 14/0 setup goes off. He gets harnessed up , and locks down and comes tight with the fish which immediately starting stripping a lot of line off his reel, unfortunately after a SOLID run, the hook inexplicably pulls, leaving the beach silent once again...
It was heartbreaking, but the sting was eased knowing they had a nice one on the beach from a short while earlier, but not to be deterred, they paddled back out what little bait they had left. While Cody was out in the darkness deploying the second bait, a black-tip flew out of the water infront of him and clipped the front of his kayak. He immediately turned back toward shore and found dam wrestling this little guy to the beach single handedly. One quick picture and she was pushed back out to sea.
The rest of the night went without incident and sat in silence for another few hours before packing up to catch a few hours of sleep before work in the morning. Both of them were able to catch lightning in a bottle their first trip out, hell their first bait out. And if this is any indication on how this season may go, you better stay tuned, because we will all be bringin' it stronger than you can possibly imagine!
Team Rebel out