After 4-days at a conference, where I had to wear a sports coat and say nice things, the drive from Orlando to Stuart was the longest 3-hours of my life. Stuart Florida is one of the worlds more special places. Not only are the people amazing, especially the crew at Whites Tackle, the pace of life is a bit slower than in my home of Nashville, Tn.
I found this place by accident a year ago. We were headed to the Everglades and due to a scheduling mishap at the last minute, by last minute I mean 12 hours before my plane left, we somehow ended up in Stuart. In short I fell in love with this place and have been back almost monthly since last winter. I have come enough to develop a routine. I land in Fort Lauderdale at 10AM and get my rental car, Drive to Stuart and eat lunch at the same Popeyes chicken every time, Leave there and go straight to Whites Tackle, then check in at the Hampton Inn. The first nights dinner is always at Lola’s seafood Eatery. After than we fish until we have had enough. As a Gen X creature of habit I have used the same guide since my first trip. Captain James Cronk runs 772 Fly and Light tackle charters and has been both my go to guide and the guide that On the fly magazine has come to depend on. I cant say enough good about James Cronk. He is one fishy dude and that is all that matters to me! Plus he is not a member of the flat brimmed hat mafia nor does he say dumb shit like “Bruh Snook are cool but Permit are my passion”!
Last night “Enough” came about 11pm. We boated 25-Snook and a handful of Moonfish, I broke off more than I cared to on dock and bridge pilings. Snook, especially big Snook, like structure so losing fish just means your fishing in the right spots. By the time 11pm rolled around I was worn out from throwing a 9-weight fly rod all evening. I will be reviewing the Temple Fork Outfitters 9-weight mangrove coast in the near future but, if you don’t have one I would highly recommend you make this your next saltwater rod!
We are heading back out this afternoon but, the wind warnings tonight may land me in a bar drinking some Frigate Reserve Rum and enjoying a good cigar. Afterall the Snook may the the treasure of the treasure coast but its the journey, the people, and the ambiance that matters…