The powerhouse sibling fishing duo of 7-year-old Sam Hatcher and brother Nathaniel, 5, had an exciting day on the water recently.
Under the expert tutelage of Native Fishing charters Capt. Noel Shaw, the boys, along with their dad and granddad, hooked into an abundance of fish — snook, sea trout, blue runner, jacks, mackerel and a very large stingray.
Show took the family to locations that he has fished since he was a boy.
The highlight of the trip came shortly after Nathaniel reached into the bait tank and pulled out a massive shiner.
It was obviously too large to use for bait, but Nathaniel insisted that he be allowed to use it on his hook.
After Shaw offered a few good natured and well-reasoned suggestions that the shiner might be too big and Nathaniel would have a higher likelihood of catching a fish with a smaller one, Shaw put the shiner on the hook.
Nathaniel casted into the glassy smooth water over the sandbar where the team had been catching snook after snook.
Moments later, the 5-year-old boy let out a “whoop” that was probably heard in Miami.
It was game on!
Sam’s spirited shouts to keep the rod tip up combined with a feverish flurry of reeling in lines and grasping for the net. Shaw was as excited as the rest of crew.
After a fierce and protracted confrontation between 5-year-old and fish, the outcome was decided as was the menu for dinner: a 28-inch snook was laid to rest in the bed of ice in the cooler.
For a grandfather, father and sons, this day — with the peaceful beauty of the sun, the warm breeze on the water, the excitement of our constantly bending rods, and Shaw’ s kind and easygoing way with the boys — this won’t be a day we’ll soon forget.
Editor’s note: Submitted to The Islander by father Peter Hatcher. Share your fishing story at firstname.lastname@example.org.