Welcome Back yak fans, and happy Fourth of July! I mean barbecue, fireworks and fishing; it doesn’t get much better than that.

My stories this month is about a new experience for me, guiding two fly fishermen!
The first thing I realized was my usual style of paddling fairly close to the client wasn’t going to happen. I thought lures were dangerous, try being close to a fly guy, but I quickly learned the safety zone (so no new piercings).

Alex and Jason had booked a B&B on Sunset Vista in Aripeka that was quite nice. Listed as “The Aripeka Shack”, it has to be the best located rental that I run into. It is situated on a canal to the North, and the Aripeka channel to the South. It’s on the other side of the no-keep zone for trout and redfish. You got to love a place where you can pull in at the end of the day in your own backyard! Alex earned major points for being a Coastal Angler reader, and saying how much he enjoyed my articles. Flattery will get you everywhere.

We set off early and had a mid-morning low, which is the tide I really like to fish.  The brought a pair of Kaku kayaks, which is a hybrid style, so it’s a lot like a paddle board with a stadium seat, which is perfect for you fly guys. The only problem was, Jason seemed to be missing the C clamps for his seat, and he went in the drink twice. But I got to give him credit; he kept the rod out of the water! Why is it when I got a charter with my gear, and they flip, all they worry about is their sunglasses. Paddling out into Indian Bay, we worked the bigger bays and out toward Cabbage Island before heading north, behind Indian key. Trout and little snook and the assorted Garbage Pail slam material came to play, but the reds were playing hard-to-get. We finally dialed them in along with probably 100 young snook, back in the northern marshes. The problem was, working a fly in a three to four-foot-wide creek with mangroves on either side. Okay, I’m not going to swear off fly fisherman, because Alex and Jason were great company, but it does seem to have certain inherent restrictions. (LOL.)

The high point of their trip was, me! Okay, probably not, but I am entertaining. Or maybe it was the people on Sunset Vista who invited us into their home and opened up a full liquor bar, with pretzels no less! Thanks Dennis, but probably it was the 36-inch cobia working the channel, and the 20-minute battle that ensued. For the Fly Guys, and I want to get this right, it hit on a Kathy Beck fleeing crab lure, and swallowed it.

Sometimes I love my job!

If you want to check out the Aripeka Shack, give JC a call at 904- 545-7543 and did I mention it has a hot tub in a fire pit?

Till next time. Bruce