The Return of Poppie’s Pink Posse! (Captain Sally’s Women’s Retreat 2/09)

The Return of Poppie’s Pink Posse! (Captain Sally's Women's Retreat Port Mansfield Series)

Day 1…

We knew we were in trouble when we got out of the car at Getaway Adventures Lodge on Feb 19 and our collective hair was blown sideways. Bruce kindly informed us that the red warning flag getting ripped to shreds across the channel didn’t really mean “WARNING!” – it merely meant “Welcome to Port Mansfield!” Luckily for us, these folks are used to wind – they’d have to be with all that hot air from Bruce! Other than those 30 mph gusts that had been blowing for the past two weeks, we were actually looking at some pretty fishable weather for Friday and Saturday, with a front scheduled to hit Saturday evening. Maybe even a pre-front bite…

Poppie had us on the water by 7:15 Friday morning with some chop and wind, partly cloudy skies and decent pressure. Captain Sally, Michelle (22baystealth), Diana (spotremover) and I lined up with Poppie to wade up to the shore of a good spot where some big trout were known to be hanging out. A few mullet were scattered around, but it was pretty quiet-looking. About 45 minutes into it, we hit some fish and Diana hooked up with back to back 26 and 24 inch trout on a pink topwater. Sally had an awesome blow-up about 10 feet from her but the fish didn’t take the lure. Then Michelle got into a 5 minute fight with a good fish on her bone Super Spook. What she suspected was a big redfish turned out to be a beautiful 28” 7 lb trout! Poppie, Sally and I got bored watching them whack those big fish, so we made ourselves useful and took pictures and untangled fish. They stopped eating, so we decided to move so that maybe the rest of us could catch a fish.

Our second stop gave us plenty of wind, sun and fish. Sally started absolutely tearing into ‘em with her purple paddle tails, and pretty quickly hooked up a nice 26” trout – but not until we started singing her famous Redfish Song. (If you’re not catching fish, start singing to ‘em. I kid you not, as soon as we all got in on the chorus, she nailed a big one.) I pretty much suck at soft plastics so I took some lessons from her, borrowed a 1/16 oz jighead and paddletail and caught about ½ dozen small trout. The line on my reel began to get too loose, so I stuck a baby trout topwater on to chunk with the wind to tighten back up. They didn’t want my pink Top Dog, Jr. like they did in November, but I limited out on keeper trout within 30 minutes on that baby trout Skitterwalk. For my first fish I thought I had a really nice one on – gave me a great fight! As I brought it in, I saw a rather disappointingly smallish tail coming in first and realized that when the fish blew up on my lure, I’d hooked it by the tail.

We all caught fish at that spot, but not poor Poppie…he managed only 1 dink. Poppie is usually a very colorful fisherman, but the poor dear was downright dejected. His faithful red and white Catch 2000 was a Catch 0 for the day. And he even threw our beloved pink Skitterwalk to no avail. We moved to a third spot where some big girls are known to hang out…when we got there, Michelle asked him what he planned to throw. When he smugly asked why she wanted to know, she told him she wanted to be sure to throw the exact opposite. He shuffled his feet and sheepishly said, “Yeah, our bite died, didn’t it?” To which she replied, “And how would you know?” As it turned out, our bite had indeed died for good for the day, other than one *monster* bite for Sally. We would have loved to have seen what almost yanked her rod into the water, but it came unbuttoned. So we packed Poppie and his flagging ego into the boat and headed back to the lodge for more harassment at his expense. He’s really a great sport – we even had him in a bra by the end of the evening.

Day 2

Captain Bruce had the dubious honor of escorting us for the big trout hunt on Saturday, while Poppie took out another crew of women anglers (who were apparently much kinder to him). Winds were down a bit and a front was scheduled to hit later in the day, so we were all primed for some good fishing. Our first wade was phenomenal, with everyone catching nice fish up to 27” all on tops – mostly chart/black, but my baby trout Skitterwalk also treated me right. We all had amazing blow-ups and hook-ups from big, hungry trout. Since this is a family-oriented site, the rest of this report will have to be much shorter because we just can’t repeat 90% of what was said or implied. Suffice it to say that Bruce was a blast and Poppie’s Pink Posse was briefly renamed Bruce’s B****es. Poppie’s crew pulled up along side our boat as we were heading over to our second spot and the old boy had managed to catch an 8.5 lb trout. (We think Jane gave it to him to hold, since she also landed a 5.5 lb 25” trout.) We hit three other spots chasing that illusive pre-front bite, but the fish were just not having it, and we headed back to port just as the front hit. All fish were hugged, kissed and released. We drove back to H-town on Sunday, which was a good thing since that front brought bluebird skies, cold temps and higher winds. We thought the November retreat couldn’t be topped, but even with winds and fronts, we had an equally fantastic time. We’re already counting down to May for Captain Sally’s next retreat.