redfish tail
Photo: Johnny Carrol Sain

Vanishing Paradise III: Force of nature

The redfish doesn’t just live in the Louisiana marsh, the redfish is the Louisiana marsh

The drag was squalling. There’s no better word for it. No staccato clicks at all. No crescendo. Just one long note of protest.

The protest began as gills flared after a nervous cast and one strip. I remember outfitter Ryan Lambert yelling at me to set the hook, then raw power transmitted from leader to line to rod. The reel took the brunt of it with a silky smooth confidence and that shrieking battle cry.

coastal louisiana dock
Photo: Johnny Carrol Sain

Vanishing Paradise I: Pure life

Coastal Louisiana is disappearing right before our eyes

“Pura vida,” said Erin Brown as the boat hummed across brackish waters. Erin is the sportsmen outreach coordinator for the National Wildlife Federation’s Vanishing Paradise program. More importantly, Erin is a coastal Louisiana native in love with her home. “Pura vida means pure life,” she said. “They say it everywhere in Costa Rica.

Pick between two styles: Scaly Redfish (yellow/red) and Striper (charcoal/light blue).

Get some Hatch Magazine gear

Featuring two different pieces of Paul Puckett artwork

We've had a bunch of folks writing via email and social media lately asking where to get Hatch Magazine gear — shirts, hats, stickers and so on. So we decided to stop dragging our feet and get to work on it.

We teamed up with the prolific and stupidly talented Paul Puckett from Flood Tide Co. and have put two shirts together. Each features one of Paul's sketches. You pick: Scaly Redfish or Striper.

Everglades Black Drum
The prom queen (photo: Dan Decibel).

An awakening in The Glades

I’m not a morning person. A 7 a.m. trico hatch? No way. Give me an evening Drake hatch any day. Tailing reds at sunrise? Not a chance. I’ll be there at sunset.

But my perspective on early-morning fishing all changed one Sunday when I met Dan Decibel for a late December trip to Flamingo.

Everglades Black Drum
The prom queen (photo: Dan Decibel).

I called him the night before from my hotel in Homestead. It was late. I asked what time we should meet. Thinking we’d meet at 7 or 8 AM, Dan suggested 5. I set the alarm for 4:15 and made sure the coffee pot worked. Four hours later, Dan’s silver truck pulled into the hotel parking lot, a Gheenoe Low Tide in tow.

Sustained by Red Bull and breakfast bars, we drove toward Florida City. About an hour later, we arrived in Flamingo, the southernmost point of Everglades National Park, greeted by hordes of blood-sucking mosquitoes.

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