Early on I used to obsess, dread and worry the night before a big charter. Wrung up with anticipation. Over thinking the next days plan just to be frustrated by what I knew would occur. Weather discrepancies, boat traffic, water conditions and countless other unpredictable scenarios. After a few years I learned, with enough spots and time and water all the little ins and outs of dozens of areas, and eventually I formulated general plans based simply on tides and logged Intel. Plans that were subject to change based solely on daily and hour to hour conditions. Then eventually, a format developed.
Regardless of this hard fought but well earned lesson, even with an hour to hour evolution of my general daily plan. Sometimes, even the best laid strategies fall through. The most intriguing aspect of this profession is that no matter your skills, experience, knowledge, Intel, networking or luck... days still don't go the way you always hope. No two days are the same. Sometimes you grind out the first half of the day, maybe 3/4's of the charter. Then you hit the last spot and the day is made. One fish, one group, maybe one school.
Ya see, it's kinda like no matter
how many big fish you boat. In the end, it's always the one that got away. You know the one. That big thump, or massive top-water explosion, that drag screaming one that spit the jig. Yep, that one. See its always the one that got away that sticks out. Well much the same with searching all day with mediocre results just to hit that last spot in the magic hour of the evening or 7th inningstretch. There it was, the double, triple or wacking away at the school and leaving em biting. It's kinda like that shirt with the egret and frog saying "don't ever give up".
See, it's in our nature, like the hypothetical 7th inning stretch. That late game rally, we just love it. Same principle, "one last cast" all the pictures I will post on this article are under this rule. It was one last spot, let's try it, let's hit this spot on the way... etc. This article started after a trip, two charter ago, each ended strong after hours on the slow train. Me and my crew were discussing the theology behind these occurances and trying to put words to weft it is they are so special and make us feel so great afterwards. It's really hard to put our fingers on. But what we know is this, they definitely stand out.
I think really it's the essence of the outdoors mindset. I mean, what are we really looking at? The hope of something great, or even miraculous. The search for great things big and small behind every bend, every tree, every sunrise, sunset or every leaf. That great moment or proverbial hidden gem. The incredible aspect that in nature from moment to moment nothing stays the same. In each outing, whether hiking, hunting, fishing, photography or just enjoying the outdoors each moment can bring something unique and extraordinary. It's like it's own blessing. The best part about these special moments outdoors are finding these hidden moments, these hidden gems. It really doesn't matter whether you find the school of fish or the perfect sunset.
At the end it's the search, the reward is the search itself. It's a mindset for sure. The soul that's always seeking. Searching out the the simpler beautiful treasures that are right under our noses in nature. A well sought adventure ending in a well earned reward is simply the icing on the cake. Whether it happens or not, seeking the great things, big or small is the true treasure. So in retrospect, seeking is the true treasure, not giving up and keeping the hope alive inside you and others around you is the reward. Looking to find and discovering life's little treasures, big and small is the joy. Keep the mindset, the journey itself is the destination you are seeking. When it all comes together.... that's just the reward for the adventure. Tight lines folks! 🤙🎣