** Gordon and Billie **

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

The Red Tailed Cooler

This fine fellow was caught at Vilano
Beach inlet, during an evening trip to,
my friend, Melvin Carter's dock,
easily the best fishing spot jn
northeast Florida. Click on the cooler
to better appreciate the "Red Fish".
The picture inspired the following poem.
The Red Tailed Cooler
The Officer of Fish and Game
said,"Sir, I must surmise,
from looking at this cooler,
that your fish is oversize.
You must not break our fishing laws,
regardless of the prize!"
"I know you want the truth." I said,
"I'll tell you, without fail.
There is no need to cuff me, sir,
and haul me off to jail.
This cooler you're concerned about
has, simply, grown a tail!"
Copyright - Gordon Hand

Monday, March 30, 2009

Sharing the Bounty - Camp Shands

My Son, Bryan, fish-fry chef extraordinaire.

Each spring for the last seven years, I have had the opportunity to provide a fish dinner for adult scouters at the closing luncheon of the LDS, North Florida Council, Boy Scouts of America Wood Badge Course.
It is normally for about seventy five people. Scouting is a great organization, that teaches young men principles to guide them through a lifetime.

This year, the catch prepared was Red Fish, Spotted Sea Trout, Flounder, and Sea Bass, along with fresh water Catfish provided by, Scott Britt, a scouter from Lake City, Florida. We also prepared hush-puppies (for you northerners' info, that's not shoes.), baked beans, cole-slaw, and home fried potatoes. Don DiCarlo, a friend from Jacksonville Beach assisted in preparation, along with my son, Bryan. Scott's lovely young daughter was a big help, also.

It was good to see so many of the men and women enjoy the luncheon. I don't know this man's name, but he was a genuinely good fellow.

There were two patrols of ladies participating in the festivities.

There were spirited exchanges of, "Thank you!" to one another, as this luncheon was their last meal together after two long weekends of training.

It is always rewarding to be associated with people who really care and sacrifice their time and efforts for the strengthening of youth. Now that the fish are eaten, I guess I'll have to go catch more. I know! I know! It's a tough job, but somebody has to do it.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Nature's Nuggets

The ultimate fisherman's sunrise.
(Ellis Cove) Salmon River, NY
From Gregory's Gallery

Yet, another maritime masterpiece.
(From Sunshine Skyway Fishing Pier)
St. Petersburg, Fl.

I may never regain the past. With open eyes and heart, I relish the gift of this moment. What lies ahead, surely, shall be another incredible present to cherish. (Yellowstone, 2007)

Memo to Florida frogs:
Beware of Bumpy Logs!!

Florida fishing is a blast!!
Shuttle Launch 3/15/09
One moment in time can be a memory for eternity. (View from our campsite, fishing in the Rocky Mountains, Utah)

Regardless of how adults may camouflage it, being young is not easy. (Click on the picture and find the baby birds. Are there three, or are there four?) St. Augustine, Fl.

A fall can bring renewal of worth and clarity of purpose. (Fishing, N.Y.)

Families, unified in focus, cannot fail. (Spring Lake) Folkston, Ga.

To embrace the brook we must navigate the stones. (Fishing, N.Y.)

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Carters' Dock II

As I think back on nights of fishing with family and friends at Vilano Beach Inlet, I am grateful for the adventures we had and the love we shared at the Carters' dock.

James Preslar is in the greatest fight of his life, battling pancreatic cancer. I have never known anyone else with the determination and drive he has, even in the face of his hardship. We caught these three Redfish (along with many other smaller fish) in the evening, after he had gone through chemo-therapy earlier in the day.

Kendra landed the biggest of the few octopi we have ever caught with hook and line. As you can tell, the octopus is not on her top ten favorites list.

Teancum (our great nephew) landed this Spotted Sea Trout which he immediatetly named, "My Monster Trout". He is thirteen now, and still refers to it by that name.........and, of course it has grown to twenty five pounds. I taught him that if he didn't allow his fish continue to grow, even after he ate them, he would never become a great fisherman. His training is ahead of schedule!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

A Very Lucky Penguin

Little "Lucky" will go home to his family and say. "You won't believe what happened to me today!"

Monday, March 2, 2009

Tami Made Alaska Magical - 2004

******* Kayak fishing at its best!! *******

Now, that's a mess of fish!! Homer

She weighs 125. Fish weighs 150+.

Tami caught it just for the Halibut!

The finest day of fishing ever had in Alaska. (Ninilchik)

I'm thankful for having shared it with my daughter.

** My friend, Willie, a great fisherman. **

On our way to Valdez to try Pink Salmon fishing.

Pinks were had by all! Valdez

I love this place!! Valdez

Thank you, Tami!

Let's go again!!