A little over a month ago a friend of mine Cody DeGuelle made his way south to the big easy in search of some Redfish. And as always this fishy Mo Fo found quite a few in his 48 hours there. Here is his Story.
Overwhelmed with excitement, our flight landed at the Louis Armstrong Airport in New Orleans. With all of our gear making it onto the carousel we were quickly in a cab and listening to our driver describe the city in a language I am not sure really exists.
After checking in to hour rooms were quickly walking Canal Street listen to street jazz performers with Bourbon Street in sight. After my dad, brother, and I were passing multiple people with beer bottles that were larger than my 9 month old, I realize us Colorado folk need to up our game.
As we approached Bourbon Street them particular odor that so many have told me about hit us square in the face. I would not say it is as bad as some say, but not something I would prefer. However, it is a perfect way to allow the culture and surrounds to be taken in and remembered.
A few short steps onto Bourbon Street and I received a call from my father-in-law explain that my wife had just been taken to the emergency room via ambulance and that two firefighters were taking care of my infant daughter. I hope no one has had to experience that position, as it was indescribable knowing that as a father, I was not there. After numerous conversations with the hospital I was speaking to my wife and everything was okay. Regardless, I was right back on a flight home to my family.
Fast-forward six weeks and I was back. Family was well and my dad and I were hopping into the pickup of Miles LaRose of Shallow South headed to the Mississippi Delta. A quick stop for biscuits and gravy, while the chef whipped up some ham and cheese po’ boys and we were out. Not long after we launched the skiff and settled in, we were weaving our way through channels looking for big pushes of reds. A chilly run in and I was headed to the bow where I lost my balance and almost took a dip to get a better idea of what the current water temps were. After pulling myself together, I made it to the casting platform and began to strip some line out. Three pulls at my reel later and my rig shoots out of my hand and into the water. Awesome!
Miles had us on 20lb+ bulls within minutes. After two blown shots and a refusal I was hooked up on a fish. If you have never seen a big red eat a fly, you should really add it to your bucket list. I would compare it to hark week when the great whites are laying a hurt down on the seals, only reds are smaller and different. Seriously, it is bad-ass. The day continued seeing floating reds consistently glowing in the distance. Once the nerves are settle, and even a decent cast could usually trigger a strike. Sheepshead and black drum sprinkled in the mix which were also fly worthy. After bringing my share of big reds to hand I turned possessively to the sheepshead. I had fashioned up some crab patterns designed by Miles with a little twist. I added polar bear fur to pattern as it was recommended that no saltwater fish can refuse the polar bear fur. All fur provided by natives from the north culling bears that were menacing their villages. So first cast at a sheepshead, eat, set, fish on. Second fish, eat, set, fish on, then line around reel and rod, fish off. I did bring a head to hand and I was excited and a little taken back by the teeth on those fish. Regardless, I was jacked.
The day continued and Miles wore us out polling us into fish after fish. The drive back to the hotel was interrupted by a quick U-turn and an explanation that crawfish season was open and we were on our way to a boil. After standing in line with some of the nicest people we were up and ordering five pounds of crawfish. I don’t think I have ever eaten five pounds of anything at one time, but what the hell, I caught a sheepshead today. We took our order that was on a shallow tub about the size of a trash can lid, fished around in the cooler for our bottles of beer, and sat down to get crawfish eating instructions. Ten minutes later after I figure it out, I had bitten into very small lobster heaven, the seasoning and the flavor of the crawfish was unexplainably delicious. All five pounds were eaten.