Tons of Tarpon
The high flooding tide meant good conditions, and while Deaton often finds redfish readily available over these flats, we didn't locate them that afternoon. But from her high vantage point standing at the Blue Wave's second station, Deaton did spot a big bonnethead shark cruising the shallows, in its typical zigzag fashion, just off the bow. "Bonnethead, 10 o'clock!" she called out, and my daughter, Rachel, visiting from Virginia, dropped a pilchard just ahead of the fish, about 40 feet out. It looked like the shark would pass nearby but keep moving on when it suddenly turned 90 degrees and pounced on its newfound prize. The circle hook bit where it was supposed to, and the fish offered a real test for a tiny new Daiwa Exist 1000 with 10-pound braid and St. Croix Legend XTreme Inshore rod, making repeated runs around the boat.