Islamorada Blown Out, Planning for the Future

Islamorada, Florida Keys - Sitting here at the Historic Green Turtle Inn (www.keysdirectory.com/greenturtleinn) enjoying my Starbucks, I am beginning to think that tourism officials in the Florida Keys would be smart to start paying me to stay away. After several days of what my guide friends said was the best weather they'd had so far this year, I set out in my Saturn XR (www.gm.com) from our Orlando home base for a couple of days of fly-fishing with some of the best: John "Dozer" Donnell and famed marine artist Tim Borski. Our first day was to be yesterday (Wed., 4/11), but it wasn't meant to be. A weak cold front pushed through, and despite forecasts calling for gentle southerly breezes and clear skies, it turned out to be overcast with thunderstorms and 20 mph winds - with gusts to 50. So Donnell and I cancelled, and I had breakfast with my good friend and Islamorada guide, Rusty Albury. In addition to being a native Conch, Rusty is the captain for one of our contributors, Bob Rich. So what do you do on a rainy day when it's "un-fly-fishable?" Well, we put on the foul-weather gear, cranked up their 43 Gamefisher, Esperanza, and braved the elements in an attempt to catch baits for the upcoming World Sailfish Championship in Key West. Not exactly world-class fly-fishing, but when you're an outdoor writer, you take what you can get, and I got some good stock footage of bait penning for future use in Marlin and Sport Fishing. Stay tuned, and we'll be bringing updates each day. Right now, I'm getting ready to pick up sandwiches at the Trading Post and then go to meet Borski for a day of sharking... stay tuned to see if we survive!