Gulf Coast Fisherman Magazine VOL 41, No. 1 - Page 31

by Jeff Herman Paddling Out STANDING TALL When and Why to Sit or Stand T he standing question is when is it a good idea to stand and cast in a kayak? Sight-casting to a redfish either standing or sitting is the ultimate way to make a catch, but it’s a good idea to know when standing is your best bet and when sitting is your best bet. Fishing with my friends, Will and Rick we were paddling through ridiculous high tides. Water levels in the marsh were easily a foot above normal and the redfish were “mowing the grass”. They were way back in the grass and scattered. Basically, it was one of those days where if you didn’t hear the fish or see them actively crashing bait, you simply were not going to see them. Will has been red fishing long enough to know this makes for a pretty tough day. So he found an area thick with bait and started casting at swirls, and he started finding reds, but it was a low percentage affair. I had opted for a blind drift with a top water. I was blind casting on a large flat hoping to catch a cruiser. I managed a rat red and one blow up on my top water. Rick had taken a similar approach on the flat adjacent. Three seasoned fishermen and no one had tried to stand and catch a fish yet. There is a reason for that, or rather, there were reasons. Standing is not a bad option it just shouldn’t be your first option. After a few hours of fishing we finally all decided standing was a viable option. As mentioned, it’s usually the second option and the factors to consider before standing are these: Water Clarity; Sun Position; Stealth; and, Accessibility (This is where the fish are in relation to the wind and sun). The first reason for not standing (notice I said “not”) is water clarity. Standing in the muddy chocolate of the upper coast can be completely pointless. If the water is turbid even your Costas won’t give you the X-ray vision to see underneath. We were fishing in pretty clear water, and standing might be an option, but always consider the water clarity beforehand. The second reason we hadn’t stood yet was because of the sun position. Overcast sky with no direct sunlight greeted us with the sunrise, so even though we had decent water clarity we had yet to get good enough sunlight to make standing and sighting reds underwater a reasonable option. As the day progressed this changed. As the sun got higher in the sky and burned off the clouds you could start to get good definition below the water column. After a few drifts Will and I started standing to see what was going on. The clarity and sun position allowed for it and we did start to spot reds, but due to the big winds we would be pushed right on top of the fish as we spotted them. This is the “stealth” aspect. By standing you also increase your own profile on the water and allow the fish to see you more easily. We started seeing them by Rick Spillman (foreground) and Will Manske stalking reds in the marsh. standing, but just before we could cast we would spooked them. Even with a drift sock, due to the clarity of the water, you would be over the fish with maybe a second to make a cast before they spotted you and tore off. To stand and be successful we would need to find a flat that had some wind protection, and that would allow us Ѽ)ɽЁݥѠ)ɔхѡɕ́ɔ)ͥȁͥеѥչ)=ȁՑI͡ͽѠ)а܁ɔݥɽѕѕ)ٕ̰хͥѥ)ͽ͠ݥѠ՝ѥѼͽ)Ս͙հ̸QՍѼѡٕ)݅́́ЁѼոٕȁѡ͠ɽ)ѡݥձ͍͕ɍѡ)ɕȁȁɅ䁍ե͕́Ѽɕ͕)́иqͥtݡɔ)ѡ͠ɔɕѥѼѡѥ)݅ѕȁɥ䰁ոͥѥݥ)ѥ)$ͱЁɕѡЁ݅)ͥɅ́͡ɥ)ե͕ͅIչ)ͽЁѼݥѠ]e̸%Ё݅́)䁙͡ЁݔݽɭЁэ)ѡ͔͠Ёݕɔ՝Ё)ЁхMɕȁѡ)х)э͠ЁЁͼ)ԁ͍ɔ͠ͼ)܁ݡѼٔЁ))ѡȁѡѼ)ɕȁ́ѡЁݡ)ݥȁ六́ɔ݅)ɔхѡͭ)六̰ԁ͔ՉхѥݥѠ)ɕ͕х)Mх)ͭȁ公ͻeЁѡ)ձаѡ՝)Ёх́Ʌѥ)IȰqхt)ɹ) ))9UId IUId5I ȀĀ܀((