The last 8 days were, as they always are, the busiest of the year for me - Palm Sunday to Easter Day and everything in between. Tomorrow i fly back to WV to spend a week with my family, and i was off today. I decided i was going fishing.
I had planned to drive down to the LA marsh to chase some reds, but i just had too much to do here before leaving for a week, so i decided instead to go to the LSU lakes, very close to where i live.
I spent hours out there (way more than i realized), paddling probably 3/4 the way around the biggest of the lakes, casting to the entire shoreline and never got a bite. Still, i couldn't have had a better time. Why, you ask?
BECAUSE I WAS STANDING UP THE WHOLE TIME!!!!
That may not seem a big deal to some, but it's the goal i've had from the minute i decided to buy a yak. I wanted to be able to stand and fish from it. I've tried every time i've been out but never made much progress. I decided today was the day. I had one rod, a water bottle, my paddle, pfd, and fishing license. I didn't care if i even saw a fish; i just wanted to learn to stand. I did it! It was a warm day, and the lake is only about 4 feet deep, so if i went in or even turtled the boat, there wasn't much at stake.
Man, that WS Ride is stable. I learned, quite accidentally, that you can stand on one leg in it. I did just that without meaning to a couple of times, and it never came close to tipping. I could cast, retrieve, pull grass, a styrofoam cup, and an old rag (i don't even want to think about what that was used for before it ended up in the lake) off my lure. I could lean over, set the rod down, get my paddle, and actually paddle around while standing. It feels like as big an accomplishment as learning to ride a bike or drive a stick shift.
I certainly won't say i mastered it. There was still plenty of wobbling going on and a couple of minutes of pure panic, but i've fished with four guys in kayaks up til now (including PlasticPirogue and ReelYankee), and three of the guys fish standing up all the time like it's nothing. I've been so jealous. Adam and Matt, the next time we're on the water together, i'll be standing right along next to you.
What a great day.