Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Speckled Trout Video First Post

Matt, Dave and I had a great few days on Maryland's Eastern Shore fishing for Specks. I have been filming with my GoPro since Annie got it for me but haven't really put together an edited version of one of my trips yet until now. The action came in flurries and there were no shortage of large Trout caught with 7 Maryland citations between our group! Look out for a few speckled trout recipes made this week as well. This video shows a portion of the action and also shows my disappointment after losing a big one!

Ever since getting my first kayak, I was instantly hooked and fishing on a Hobie is a great experience! I really look forward to sharing more information about one of my passions in life, Fishing. Thanks Matt for the platform of The Hobie Life to do so! Stay Tuned!

Monday, September 23, 2013

Speckled Trout 101

Speckled Trout have become my favorite fish to target here in Maryland. I think primarily because I have already caught most of the other species here in the mid/upper bay regions. Although I'm still chasing a big striper from the yak, which is a goal for later this fall.

I'm going to cover some of the basic tackles, lures, and techniques for targeting these beautiful fish here in Maryland. This will definitely give you enough intel to get out there and try it yourself. You may not tear them up right away, but half the battle is putting in the time and learning the hard way.

Tackle Choices:

I suggest a 6'6" - 7' Medium to MH rod with fast action. You want a rod that will give some when the trout hits providing less resistance allowing the fish to eat the bait and not be deterred by the stiffness of the rod. I use two 6' rods just because that's what I have, but they would be a little bit better if they were 6'6".

I personally use:
7' Medium Overboard Bobber Series Casting Rod with a Shimano Curado 201E7 (Trolling and Casting)
6'6" Medium Heavy Overboard Soul Pole Rod (Casting)
2 - 6' Medium Overboard Bobber Series Spinning Rods (Trolling)

Perfect example of the rod I use, paired with a Shimano Stradic Ci4 3000 w/ 20lb braid. I also like to use 3-5 feet of fluorocarbon leader tied with a Half Albright Knot. I tie the leader to the hook with a Canoeman's Loop Knot

It is important to have a reel with a smooth drag. Trout have a soft mouth/jaw structure and tend to head shake a lot. A smooth drag will allow the fish to take line easily when it decides to run, which they do often... and not rip the hook from the fish's mouth.

Lure Options:

I've come to be a firm believer in the Saltwater Bass Assassin 4" Paddle Tails. I own almost every color and have had success on most colors. Some days certain colors work better, that is why I work 3 rods initially with 3 different colors, then adjust from there if I notice any pattern. I also like 4" curly tail grubs from time to time as well, mostly when the bluefish aren't around, because they are more easily chewed up. The Zman plastics are a great option if bluefish are present to minimize the amount of lost baits, but personally I like the slightly smaller sized Bass Assassins the most.

4" Bass Assassin w/ 1/8oz jig head

4" Bass Assassin w/ 1/16oz jig head

I strictly use 1/16 - 1/8 oz jig heads or weedless hooks (w/ weighted shank and screw for plastic) for trolling. I personally like pink painted heads the best, then red or chartreuse.

For casting lures I like 1/4oz jig heads or weedless hooks as they allow for great casting distance. I also like to add a spinner arm to my jig heads to add a different look than the baits that I use trolling.


Trolling - Trolling is simple... set out two rods with lures like suggested above and pedal/paddle as slow as you can while keeping your lures from snagging the bottom on grass, oysters, mud, or rocks.

Casting - This is the funnest because you actually get to set the hook on the thump of a trout bite. I cast when there are fish breaking the surface, while fishing around points with moving water and structure and working the shoreline near small outflows of creeks and grassy islands

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Stacking Trout....Paper!!

Shane and I left for a two day excursion yesterday morning at 0415 to head to somewhere over the Bay Bridge and on the Promise Land of the Maryland Eastern Shore to chase my personal favorite fish the Speckled Trout.

I truly think they are the prettiest fish that resides in the Chesapeake Bay, I even have a Trout print hanging on my bedroom wall.. and may soon employ a local talent to make an original piece for me after this weekend.

We arrive to the launch loaded with Overboard Rods and all the soft plastics necessary to rip some lips of the mysterious Maryland trout. We launched at sunrise around 0630 after unloaded the yaks and meeting our buddy Dave at Wawa. There was a full moon this week and the lunar tables were very favorable for fishing yesterday and today so we hoped to have an EPIC day.
Sad, Fat Trout...

The day got off to a good start with the three of us consistently hooking up throughout the morning. Dave was the first to add to his stack of Trout papers (AKA Citations). I was next....then.. Shane... then me.... and then me again. To say the least Friday was the bomb!!!! I caught 16 fish that scored for Kayak Wars with the average size fish close to or over 22".

#1 - 24" 'Paper' Trout  -  Photo by Shane Clift
#2 - 27.5" 'Paper' Trout  -  Photo by Shane Clift
#3 - 24.75" 'Paper' Trout
Double hookup with a 27.5" and a 23" trout!! Photo by Dave Adlington
Shane's #1 - 24+" 'Paper' Trout  -  Photo by Dave Adlington
Dave's #1 - 25" 'Paper' Trout  -  Photo by Dave Adlingtion

Between the 3 of us we caught close to 40 fish on Friday, it was one of those days you live for and always hope to have the next time you head out on the water!
Lunch Break on Friday... Photo by Shane Clift

Saturday morning came just as quickly as Friday ended. Shane and I hit the water today only to be met with a slow bite from 0630 til 1130. But it wasn't all bad.... I was able to stack some more paper!!! I only caught four trout today but 2 were citations 25.5" and another 27.5" Gator!!!!

Don't let the picture deceive you... same fish as the next picture... Photo by Shane Clift
Now that's more like it!!
#4 - 27.5" 'Paper' Trout  - Photo by Shane Clift
Big Daddy Trout  - Photo by Shane Clift
#5 - 25.5" 'Paper' Trout  -  Photo by Shane Clift
Shane with a few trout that unfortunately were gut hooked while fishing today, so they came home for dinner.
What an awesome two days, look out for a video post from Shane in the coming days and a Speckled Trout Fishing 101 in the near future as well that will include necessary tackle, lures, rigs, and fishing styles.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

CBKA Charity Tournament Part 2

Fishing conditions were tough with strong north winds, but with close to 100 anglers on the water we knew solid fish were going to be caught. While holding down the fort at the camp reports were coming in of a lot of stripers in the the 18-22 inch range so we knew a bigger fish was going to be needed to win both the Slam division and the Striper division.

The results came in and it was a tight race for the top prizes including a 1" difference between the winner and the runner up of the $500 cash prize offered to the CCA member that caught the largest fish.

The results are as follows:

Slam Divsion (Striped Bass + Bluefish + White Perch) - Sponsored By Easton Cycle & Sport
1st - Richard Souder - 51" - $300 Gift Card
2nd - Jimmy McDermott - 44.5" - $200 Gift Card
3rd - Jason Pratt - 36" - $100 Gift Card

$500 CCA Advantage (Largest fish caught by a member)
Richard Souder - 30" Striped Bass 

Striped Bass Division - Sponsored by Backyard Boats
1st - Mike Rosa - 29" $200 Gift Card
2nd - Chris Burke - 26" $100 Gift Card
3rd - Don Huber - 22.5" - $50 Gift Card

Perch Division - Sponsored by All Tackle
1st - Roger Metz - 11.5" - $100 Gift Card
2nd - Nathan Oakes - 11 3/8" - $75 Gift Card
3rd - Ryan Altenburg - 11.25" - $50 Gift Card

Largest Bluefish - Sponsored by Katherine Charters
Don Huber - 10" - Charter Fishing Trip for 6

Lady Angler Division - Sponsored by Appomattox River Company
1st - Samantha Ferline - 13" Striped Bass
2nd - Michelle Vieraitis - 10" Perch

Blue Crab Division - Sponsored by Fisherman's Crab Deck
Harry Steiner - 6" crab "on the fly" - $100 Gift Card

Fly Division - Sponsored by Tochterman Tackle
Mark Bange - 11.25" Striped Bass - Fly box and lure package

BKD Advantage - Sponsored by Bass Kandy Delights 
Richard Souder - 18.25" Striped Bass - Biggest fish on a BKD

Hobie Advantage - Sponsored by Backyard Boats
Richard Souder - Biggest fish on a Hobie Kayak - $50 Gift Card

The event turned out amazing!! Final numbers haven't been tallied as of yet, but I estimate we raised close to $6000 for our charities!!

Oh yeah the food was the bomb too!!!!

A lot of thanks goes out the the main man behind the lens..... Mr. Russ

Chesapeake Bay Kayak Anglers Charity Fishing Tournament Part 1

This past weekend marked the 3rd Annual CBKA Charity Tournament to benefit Make A Wish Mid Atlantic and Coastal Conservation Association of Maryland. Our tournament staff spent countless hours preparing for the event recruiting over 60 sponsors and promoting the event which became our largest event yet.

There were 107 participants that registered for the event, 3 raffles, and some awesome prizes for the winning fishermen and ladies.

Last Friday came quick as our crew of 6 coordinators descended upon Camp Wright in Stevensville, MD to put everything together and set up shop before the captain's meeting at 7pm that evening. We worked tirelessly to fill 100 Captains bags with the 1st 50 or so including the premium goodies, which included; lure samples from BKD, Dirty Red Baits, Specialized Baits, Chex Jigs, Cablez Eyewear Retainers, and plenty more premium discount coupons to supporting companies and other swag.

We also had to organize the raffle set up which was bigger and better than ever.

This year boasted 3 raffles: 
Photo by Russ
  • Hobie Outback donated by Easton Cycle and Sport
Photo by Russ
  • Jackson Coosa donated by Valley Mill Boats, Grizzly 16qt Cooler, Shore Tackle Custom Rod, Guided Trip with 1st Landing Kayak Guide Services, $50 to Austin Canoe and Kayak, Bending Branches Carbon and Wood paddle
Photo by Martin Charles

Photo by Martin Charles
The Captains Meeting went off without a hitch. It included myself and my buddy Tyler Sondberg shucking and serving his freshly grown Snow Hill Oysters which was a big hit!!
Photo by Russ

Also, new this year was a Pot Luck dinner for Friday night. A variety of foods were brought including a bushel of crabs, shrimp skewers, and fresh Masgoufed Striper and Trout. A full Masgouf demonstration was put on by Snaggedline Board Member Mustafa (Abumasgouf).
Late night festivities helped Saturday morning roll around a lot faster than expected, but it was great hanging out with the crew.
Langston (Metroman) and I obviously think were the next kayak fishing rap duo. Photo by Martin Charles

The weather for Saturday was windy to say the least. Here are a few shots from Saturday on the water.
Richard Souder here showing us how it's done!! Photo by Russ

Snagged MD team member Ryan Altenburg catching his 3rd Place Perch. Photo by Mike Soudee 

Shane here pointing at his empty crab trabs. Photo by Russ

To be continued with results and more pictures.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

1st Annual Maryland CCA Red/Trout Tournament

So I spent to the whole weekend fishing for the elusive Maryland Speckled Trout and Redfish on the eastern shore tributaries of the Chesapeake Bay. This was an awesome new event put on by the CCA to help recognize the importance of the speck and red fishery here in Maryland, since there are no legal limitations put on commercial fishing for them.

We casted and trolled small plastics including; bass assassin paddle tails and 4" curly tail grubs. A lot of colors worked over the course of the weekend, but chartreuse and white worked best. I was fishing all my baits with weed-less hooks to avoid snagged the grass, but this wasn't a full proof solution.

Friday afternoon was super slow, not really much to speak of except two keeper stripers, that were released.

Saturday was the start of the tournament. I fished with Mike (Grilled), Dail (Stupidjet) and our other buddy Matt and his girlfriend showed up later in the morning.  It was not my day. It was slow and I watched Mike and Dail consistently catch fish here and there, while we were all using the same tactics and pretty much the same baits. But that's how it goes sometimes and I was happy that Mike and Dail were tearing them up..... I ended the day with only 53+", but I was able to catch my 4 fish total, but I did lose a whopper which was a big heartbreaker.

Mike put up the score to beat with 92" for a combination of reds and trout. He also posted up the largest trout with a Maryland Citation of 25".  Dail also put up a good score with 85.5" putting him in 3rd place after day 1.
Not the best picture, but Dail here with a nice trout.

Those scores were solid and topped all the scores in the boat division, but I knew I come close or even squeeze my way into the top three in the area we were fishing.

Sunday came around and it was just me and Mike, and our other buddy Dave (Donkeyfish) who joined us for a day of fishing. Mike was hoping to upgrade his big trout to solidify his lead for the $500 cash prize for the largest speckled trout. I was hoping to put up a reasonable score that could contend for the top 3.

Fishing was a little more active today, I got two fish early on... a 16.5" and a 20.5". This gave me a good feeling about the day and was aiming for 4 fish in the 21-22" range which would put me in contention and would be totally doable. A little later Dave and I found some fish for a short flurry where I picked up another two fish a 17" and 21". Now I just need to upgrade.

We trolled around covering some ground and then I doubled up!!!! Pulled one rod and fought and netted it as quick as possible while continuing to pedal just hoping the other fish would stay hooked. As soon as the 1st fish was boated I fought the next and got it in the boat without the net!!! Took a deep breath and measured and photo'd the fish as quickly as possibly. Simultaneously Mike hooked up in the same area, so I tried get my lure back in the water ASAP, but I couldn't manage another one. After that the bite pretty much shut down. 


I finished the day with a 84.75" total for 4 speckled trout, which put me in 4th place. I was happy with my finish as I definitely gave it my best shot for a shortened Sunday of fishing, since Mike and I finished up early to head to Awards Ceremony in Crisfield, MD

Mike held on to 1st place and the Big Trout Award, taking home $500 and a custom Trout painting posting the largest total regardless of division, Kayak, Boat, or Fly.
Mike (Grilled), Tony Friedrich (CCA President), and Charles (Angler and Artist of painting)
Brian (Slobberbob) took 2nd place with 86+" total.
Dail finished out in 3rd with 85.5".
Don't forget to check out Overboard Rods, AFTCO, and 12wt gloves.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

CBKA Raffles Galore

For those of you participating and not participating in this years 3rd annual tournament our raffles are going to be awesome!!! We have a Hobie Outback raffle open to the public and then we will have two raffles that we take place the weekend of the tournament! It is known that our CBKA Tournament is easiest place to win something cool. We have nearly as many sponsors as participants, over 80 now, so there are a lot of cool raffle prizes to go around!!

If you can make the tournament this year go ahead and support by purchasing a ticket for the Hobie Outback raffle!!

We will have TWO (2) kayaks for raffle this year!

CBKA and Easton Cycle & Sport, our very first sponsor and supporter, have teamed up to offer up a brand new 2013 Hobie Outback mirage drive kayak for raffle!

This will be an online raffle open for entries right now and limited to 100 total entries. You DO NOT have to be present or registered in the September CBKA tournament to be eligible. You must be 18 or older to enter.

Tickets are $25 each or 5 for $100. To get the discount register yourself 5 times when signing up.

This event will run from right now until 12:01AM September 14th, the morning of the CBKA event. The winner will be announced at the CBKA awards dinner September 14th.

Here's the link:

IN ADDITION, a new CBKA sponsor, Valley Mill Boats of Germantown, MD. has provided a Jackson Kayak Coosa for raffle the day of the event. Tickets will be $20 each. (cash only, please. We don't have an ability to process credit cards)

We'll be doing a two deck card raffle and tickets are limited to 104. Your half of a card will be available at the captain's meeting, Friday September 13th and Saturday, September 14th, the day of the event. The winner will be announced at the CBKA awards dinner September 14th.

All proceeds benefit CBKA charities. See the CBKA website for details. www.cbkainc.com