Fishing for sharks?
Are you looking for an adrenaline rush? Shark fishing can actually be both a fun and rewarding adventure, especially when done from a beautiful beach. While some people consider sharks to be nothing less than dangerous “man-eaters,” they can also provide sports fishers with a real challenge be it from a fishing boat or from the sunny shore.
Introduction to the Sport
The United States has approximately 5,730 miles of coastline. With access to the Gulf of Mexico, and the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, the sharks have enough water in which to swim. The Pacific Coast has a significant number of sharks checking out the beaches but they are usually the larger sharks such as the Great White Sharks.
While they roam the entire coastline of the US, Florida and the gulf coast states seem to attract the lion’s share of sharks. The truth is it can be a rush to hook a shark and land him on a beach. Literally millions of Americans reside within an hour’s drive of a coastline but not many know the thrill of this sport.
Every single year thousands of tourists travel to the various coastal regions for their vacations and yet many of them don’t even know that the sport is even one of their options. The number of these sea creatures swimming amongst beachgoers is surprising. What most people don’t know though is that sharks generally do not intentionally bite swimmers. Most shark bites occur because someone was in the wrong place at the wrong time. If a swimmer happens to in the water near a school of appetizing bait fish at the same time a Spinner or Blacktip shark happens to be hungry that swimmer might get accidentally bit. Of course, no one needs to be in the water to enjoy this sport. Beach shark fishing allows you to both enjoy the beach and possibly experience the rush of capturing one of the ocean’s greatest denizens.
Catch and Release
Set up your chairs and shark gear. Cast your shark bait in the perfect spot and put your shark fishing pole into your rod holder. Make sure you’ve loosened your drag to avoid having your pole pulled into the sea when the shark swims by and takes your bait.
Now you do what all true fishermen do best. Wait. Hopefully, your waiting will be rewarded when your clicker will sound off or your pole will try to bend over.
Feel the rush as you prepare to engage the “baddest” predator of the seven seas. Get to your pole immediately! The beast has taken the bait. Count 10 once the click sounds off and set your hook.
Quickly load up your drag to the preestablished setting. Be certain you reel in all the slack in your line and set the hook as hard as possible.
The shark will begin to peel off some drag. Watch the water. If you have hooked a spinner, mako or blacktip shark you might see him jump. Don’t try to stop him from peeling drag. Now just give the shark some time to tire himself out a bit and keep the line as tight as you possibly can.
If the shark heads back towards you then reel in the slack as quickly as you can. You might want to sprint up the beach a bit to once more tighten the slack line. You should begin to gain line back again.
You should see your 100-pound leader rise to the surface. This is when you will need a partner to either hold your fishing pole or grab your caught shark by his tail. You should be in water that is no deeper than your knees.
Now get a good grip and try to pull the shark by his tail out of the water and onto the sand. At this point, you should also have your pair of 16-inch channel lock pliers on you so you can retrieve your hook. Make sure the shark is well situated on the beach.
Be careful but work fast so that you do not permanently hurt the shark. If you are unable to remove the hook after trying two or three times then just leave it behind. Don’t worry because in about two days it will rust and come out of his mouth and he will be no worse for the wear.
Take your pictures quickly and then pull the shark back to the ocean. Walk the shark out into the knee-deep water so that the water will once more flow over his gills. If the shark does not respond you must move him in a back-and-forth motion through the water. Don’t worry because you will definitely know when he is ready to swim free.