Sunday, December 5, 2010


By: Mad Mike Benson
   "Shit that’s hot", I murmur as the coffee burns my upper lip. I set the beat up travel mug on the counter beside a stack of unpaid bills and open my fly-box to check inventory. With all the rabbit and sparkling flash it looks like a tornado ripped through a pet shop and a hobby lobby. After a quick head count I grab my rod and my coffee and head for the door. I’m met by the warm sticky heat of a South Carolina morning. The sun isn’t even up yet but I’m sweating by the time I cover the 20 feet to my truck. But the Air is still and the tide should be low around 8 AM giving me plenty of time to search the flats for Redfish that will also be taking advantage of the relative early morning coolness to crush shrimp and mullet against the oyster banks.
  It may not feel like it at the moment but there is change in the air. The summer is in her last heat filled death throws as she comes to an end. Fall is breathing down our necks with the promise of cooler weather and hungry fish. The summer has been long, and though I’ve spent some time on the water, my fishing time has fallen victim to too much work and boyfriend duties. But all things change. As fall ushers in the new season it brings with it hope that I can find some free time, and waste it poling along the marsh.
   The water is like glass as we pull up to our first flat. Or at least it would be if the millions of mullet and shrimp would stay still. But I guess if I had a creature 100 times my size lying in wait for the chance to eat me, I would be moving too. As the morning progresses we find ourselves spectators to natures beauty, and the vicious game of life and death she hosts. Along the way we manage to catch a few fish. There’s not much talking between Brian and myself, no need really. The tide drops, then rises. The bait and reds seek the safety of the spartina, and our morning adventure comes to a close.
   Our world, like our lives is constantly changing. No one moment on the flats is like another. So we adapt, change our flies, our approach, or pack it up and move all together. It’s this constant game of adaptation I find so compelling about saltwater fishing, and it’s what keeps my attention. All things change, a fact I try to keep in perspective in fishing and my life. Sometimes I am successful, other times I have to shake off a bad decision and keep moving. But the seasons will continue to change, each bringing new challenges, but also bringing hope. Hope that I will be able to adapt, and succeed. The hope that I too can change


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  2. Great article Mike, felt like I was there...broke and surrounded by Low Country scenery so it wouldn't matter

  3. Good stuff. This is very similar to my writing style. Stumbled upon your blog today. Good stuff. I will "follow."

    The Average Joe Fisherman