About time for an update

So… it’s been a while.

My last post recapped a trip I helped guide over a year ago for Pack & Paddle.

We all know the rollercoaster that 2020 has been so far. It’s been eventful for me as well, just not so much on the fishing front. At least not in the realm of fishing that I’ve been accustomed to. I’ll start in June of last year…

My last kayak fishing trip of 2019 in May.

In June 2019, I had a bit of a wake-up call. Nothing major, no life threatening situations that usually follow that phrase. I just basically took inventory of what my priorities were in life, and felt that I wasn’t giving my family enough of myself. I also felt that I needed to recenter in on my faith, which has always played a big role in my everyday life.

My response in handling this revelation was to step back – almost completely – from the fishing world (aside from work involvement at Pack & Paddle). I didn’t provide much of an explanation at the time, but I think I was trying to figure all of it out for myself.

From June 2019 to January 2020, I did not fish aside from bank fishing with my son. Instead, I spent days off with my wife and kids, I started playing guitar in church again, and I fell back in love with photography.

On January 1st 2020, I joined up with my friends whom I never fish with anymore, Karl & Trey. We finally got the kayaks wet again down in Pointe Aux Chenes. I can’t remember if they caught anything, honestly, but I do remember catching a rat red, but that was it.

One of the only photos from our New Years Day fishing trip to PAC; Dawn on 2020.

Again, no kayak fishing after that for a while.

In March, a door opened at a local fabrication shop, literally about five minutes from my house. After six years of living in Morgan City/Berwick and traveling to Lafayette everyday for work, and also noting my desire to be closer to my family, I went in for an interview. At the time, my experience in that line of work was very, very limited but I got the job and it’s been going well. I’ve learned a lot and am continuing to learn everyday. I do miss Pack & Paddle and the friends I’d made in that season, but luckily most of us keep in touch regularly.

I sold my main kayak, picked up another one, and then another one.

I hit the waters of PAC again in April for a massive skunk of a trip. I saw plenty, plenty of redfish scattered around the marsh and cruising banks, but never could get one to bite. I finally got two shots at one red, and though he missed it the first time, he nailed it the second time. Then I proceeded to jerk the lure from his mouth. I remember throwing down my rod in frustration, sitting back down and paddling back to the truck in the rain feeling pretty defeated.

Another long break from the water until June when I took River out in the kayak (a Native Ultimate 12) to try and catch his first kayak fish…

Father’s Day Fishing in Stephensville, LA.
River, the “Bluegill Slayer”, with his first kayak fish.

Fast forward again to July, and now the itch is starting to return. My co-worker Chris just bought a couple of kayaks for he and his son. After getting them, I joined them on the Bayou Teche near Calumet to bass fish and snap some photos…

Chris and his son Gauge getting use to their new kayaks.

Now, I’m mostly caught up. The itch is back and I’m ready to get back to sharing fishing trips again.

That being said, I joined up with my former P&P coworkers (Mark & Max) a few weeks ago and we hit the water in Mark’s Xplor Skiff. While it wasn’t the fishiest day we’ve ever had, we had a great time and they got to watch me try to knock off the “I haven’t fished in months” rust. It took a little time, but we all brought home fish – and both of my kids finally tried fish and said they liked it (my wife is NOT a seafood fan)!

The struggle was real, but hard work paid off. Photo: Mark Carline
Photo: Max Dugas

I’m hopeful to again hit the water soon, and have some more reports to share!

Also, check out the most recent issue of Kayak Angler Magazine. One of my photos made the cover! I’ve contributed a few how-to and where-to-go articles in the past for KA, but getting a photo on the cover was an awesome surprise!

4 Comments on “About time for an update

  1. Wow. Nice to hear from you again Always enjoy your photos and your stories.
    Looking forward to more content from you and congrats on the recent photo that was selected for the magazine cover. Bet that was a great surprise. Tight lines.

    • Hey Derek. Sorry that I’m just getting to respond. Hope you faired through the storm alright. I know it’s a really tough situation over there right now. The entire west side of the state are heavy on my thoughts and prayers right now. Tracey and I are doing what we can for now to help out from where we are. You guys are in our prayers.
      – Eli

  2. Eli,

    its exciting to read your articles again! I’ve always enjoyed your articles you put out. the way you write your articles certainly put you in the story as if you were there with you. pictures are always a pleasure to see from you good sir. I’m sure my wife and I wouldn’t mind buying some photos to decorate the house. I’m really glad to hear that you worked out some struggles you’ve had over the year. No doubt we all go through those kind of times in our lives. the most important thing is we come out of it stronger than ever. I hope all is well with you with this covid thing, It certainly has taken a tole on my family and fishing. Also, I wanted to recommend on your captions under your pictures are hard to read since your website causes them to be vertical.

    tight lines,

    Justin Price

    • Thanks Justin. I greatly appreciate your comments and kind words. We’ve been good throughout this covid situation, but I’m sorry to hear that it’s been tough on yall.
      If you ever see a photo of mine that you’d like to get printed, let me know. I can get you quote and we can figure it out.
      I also think I’ll need to figure something out with those captions. I didn’t realize the site would format them as it did.
      Thanks again man, and be well!
      – Eli

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