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Unruly Member
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All,

I usually puruz through this message board and post on the Gulf Coast Shark Board - although there are always great posts here. I can't tell you how much I have learned about fishing through these great boards. (I've only been surf-fishing for two years.) Over this period of time of learned some great "how-tos." But it occurred to me I've also learned a lot of "how not to's." Here's a post I put on the Shark Board. I thought I'd post here as well. Hope it make for some interesting story telling.

In the past this forum has had some great polls and surveys. In fact there has been long threads on best rod/reel combos, how to present bait, how to sink PVC into the beach, and my all time favorite - how to deploy bait without a kayak. (In true Texas form, it always comes down to some type of projectile.)

Here's a new one - best close call.

It was a weekend of highs and lows for me. Caught my first large shark. Also had a close call at San Luis Pass. On Sunday the waves were fairly high - but there was a heck of a current away from the beach. I guess a riptide of sorts. For those of you who don't know SLP it has some pretty wicked tides.

The kids could play on the beach but I wouldn't let them go in the water. My brother-in-law and I thought we would throw in one line a piece. I went out cast my line and came back. I noticed he was struggling a bit in the surf. Then I saw him swim out of a wave without his pole. I had my life jacket on and thought I'd help him retrive his pole. When I went out there he was in far enough that he could walk. The pole was about 10 yards behind him and floating. I swam after it.

The wave were big and rolling. A couple of strokes and I'd have it. A couple of more and for sure. Finally I caught up and grabbed the pole. I was out far ... but not ridiculously far. I started swimming back to shore. Oddly enough those big rolling waves that helped take me out to catch the pole were now smashing like crazy over top of me. I swam hard to the shore and was not making good progress. I was getting my *** kicked by waves. I was at the point I swallowed so much water I thought I was going to puke.

My brother in law came out to help. He had a life jacket on. I handed him the fishing pole and told him I had taken a pounding. In fact I was getting real worried. He told be to relax, go onto my back and time the waves. Breath deep and not to panic. Sound advice. I was getting real scared. I'll I could think about is how far the shore seemed to be. Oddly enough there were people swimming not twenty yards behind me. Here I was so spent and so out of breath I thought I was going to puke.

I imagine I was in the surf no more than 10 minutes. Finally, me feet could touch, the next set of waves and I could touch a bit more, a third set and I could walk. Unbelivable. If I didn't have a life jacket on ... it would have surely been the end. I'm thankful for my bro-in-laws sound advice.

Here's what I learned -

1.) Thankfully I had a jacket on - I will always wear one and keep plenty around at camp for those who dont.
2.) I shouldn't have bypassed my brother in law and went for his rod. I should have talked to him to understand that he abandoned it for a reason - the surf was rough and for a while he was struggling.
3.) A fishing pole - what the f#@* was I thinking? The odd thing is we rescued it.

How about it ... any of you have some close encounters while suf-fishing stories you would like to pass on?
 
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