2014

Well, folks… Like many others I’m writing to somewhat summarize my 2014 year. It has been great. I’ve had many ups, downs, successes, and failures . That’s life and I wouldn’t have it any other way!

We have been having great days on the water with clients from around the continent. They have come from California to Pennsylvania, from Florida to western Canada, and everywhere in between. Fishing and guiding isn’t always sunshine, rainbows, and unicorns, but the tough days make the great days that much better. It sure is fun to have those days that leave you with a big head thinking you’re a bad-ass on the water, but it’s nice to have those humbling days too.

Before I started guiding I would take friends out and more often than not I wouldn’t fish much, if at all. I would do everything I could to put them on fish and help them achieve things that many of them had never achieved. Well, it turned out that I LOVE guiding, teaching, and observing. I wasn’t really sure what to expect from guiding paying clients, but I’ll tell you this… Guiding isn’t “easy”. It’s not “easy” money. It’s “work”. The type of work that for me isn’t really “work”. And that’s how it should be.

With all that being said, we have had some incredible days on the water this year! From January, through spring, summer, fall, and now closing out in the December winter. Want to target redfish, black drum, jack crevalle, etc. on fly or light tackle? Good news for you is that we have a year-round fishery. Don’t think for once that you can only get the big bull redfish in the fall and winter. It’s possible year-round! In fact, I had one of my greatest days on the water back in May where I went out solo for a little fun fishing targeting slot reds in skinny water. I caught so many losing count in a short amount of time that I decided to make a run and scout for some bulls. The morning repeated itself in the afternoon with countless fish in the boat, but the fish were 5 times the size. That will be a day I remember for the rest of my life. Oh, and I had a banana on the boat….

 Solo day in May. 

Solo day in May. 

 Solo day in May.

Solo day in May.

Even though I had an absolutely incredible day on the water by myself where I didn’t see a boat all day and didn’t have to share the fishing time with anyone my most favorite day on the water in 2014 was when I took Keelia out fishing for her first time ever. We got a really late start and it was kind of a hazy, cloudy day, but we had to give it a shot. I was determined to teach her how to spot fish and cast a spinning rod accurately enough to catch said targeted fish. Long story short, it wasn’t easy for her, but she stuck with it and put a number of good fish in the boat including the monster red in the photo below. I was ecstatic and still am to this day! Some memories just stick with you. Kind of like the day we got a big bull redfish in the boat using a boat anchor. What a day!

 Keelia on her first day ever fishing.

Keelia on her first day ever fishing.

 The fish that almost made it off with a rod and reel, but was retrieved using a boat anchor.

The fish that almost made it off with a rod and reel, but was retrieved using a boat anchor.

Since then, I have helped many people catch their first and largest red fish of their life and I’m just getting started. My hard drive recently crashed and I’m in the process of recovering my photos so I don’t have a ton to share, but you can check out my Gallery for more of the photos from 2014.

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The smile on their faces says it all.

Here’s to 2014 being a great year and to everything ahead of me in 2015!

 

Capt. Brandon Keck