Grumpy old men and flounder

Thumbs up for Sam

I brushed the sleep from my eyes and glanced at the clock, 4:30 am. I didn’t want to leave my bed but when the tides are right and the weather is good, you must make the most of it. Plus, I had special orders from Dad to get him some flounder or else he would stop taking me hunting.

I met Sam at the spot shortly after and he too looked like he would rather be in bed. Nevertheless, we suited up and waded out in the crisp winter waters. As my feet sank into the mud, I felt the freezing water creep into the holes in my wetsuit, lovely.

This spot usually held a few good flounder but we have come back empty-handed before. Straight away we knew this wouldn’t be the case this time as, within the first five minutes, I already had a flounder in my sights. No messing about, I speared it and into the old schoolbag it went.

There hadn’t been any wind or rain all week so the water was glassy and clear, making it easy for us to spot the flounder and it showed. One after another the bag quickly began to fill—we were practically tripping over them. We passed up a lot of small ones and once the total got to seven, we decided not to be greedy and leave the rest alone for the next people, as we had enough for Sam’s and my family.

We arrived back at Sam’s van as the sun rose over the estuary. After a quick photo shoot, we immediately gutted one and threw it into a hot pan full of butter. It had to have been one of the best breakfasts I had ever had and well-earned, although Dad was a bit grumpy that it meant one less flounder for him.

Spearing flounder is one of my favourite forms of fishing: good exercise, great fun, and it’s really rewarding. With the set net ban, I have seen a big increase in people spearing for them, which is awesome to see, and I encourage more people to get out there and give it a go.

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