Saturday, May 2, 2015

Beautiful creatures like beautiful places...

There is a river in North Florida named Santa Fe...warm and the color of a strong tea it makes its way towards the gulf. At it's headwaters it rises from the ground in magnificent fashion. Not as a trickle but full flowing and ready to support the diverse ecosystem that surrounds it. Along its path there are beautiful blue springs that are nestled in pockets along the shoreline feeding the river as it grows. The banks are lined with cypress and live oaks draped in spanish moss. The river is home to manatees, alligators, numerous birds of every color and in my opinion...the jewel of this flow, the Suwannee bass. Although small...the world record is 3lb 14oz...the Suwannee bass is full of fight and a real badass but wears the most beautiful colors of any black bass species. His favorite food are crayfish which thrive along the limestone bottom this ancient river has carved. This fish is not hard to catch since they are voracious feeders, all you need is a small jig or crankbait that mimicks a crawfish and the ability to not be completly hypnotized by the river's beauty. To float and paddle the Santa Fe is an experience to behold because it is one of God's great outdoor cathedrals. If you kayak fish I urge you to do a quick Google search, after you explore via the web give "Santa Fe Canoe Outpost" a call...they can set up a shuttle and give you all of the information you'll need about camping and fishing on this river. The folks at the "outpost" love the Santa Fe and are eager to help anyone wanting to explore it. Make time for a trip to experience this jewel of old Florida and if you're lucky you may hit the motherlode of the Santa Fe's hidden gems, the Suwannee bass.