It was a very exciting week at Redfish University. Great fishing, new boats, Redfish U. expansion, homeschooling, fishing out of a 17 Maverick with a tower(everyone knows my disdain for tower boats)… We got some exciting new ventures here at Redfish University in the very near future along with another awesome boat to add to the RU arsenal. In a week’s time, the 2012 Pathfinder 2300 HPS/Yamaha SHO 250 will arrive at my door. The Pathfinder will allow Redfish U to comfortably enter the Gulf waters in search of pompano, bull redfish and even some bottom fishing. I will stick to my expertise on the inshore flats with the knowledge-thirsty and experienced RU clients and a new captain at Redfish University will handle the more basic, family outings and bottom fishing adventures. Also, a new Redfish University VIP section is in the works. An advertising/marketing surge. So there you have it….. Expansion.

Another way Redfish University will expand is a service we call “Redfish University Homeschooling.” Last year we performed nine of these popular events. We have scheduled many more homeschooling courses this year and have already performed three since Jan. 1, including one this morning at a local business. Basically, the Redfish University Homeschooling course is a extremely detailed five hour guide trip packed into a two hour course in a conference room setting. Powerpoint, projection screen, large maps, rods/reels, baits, knots, basic/advanced techniques and tricks. Sometimes we even bring the boat. Homeschooling is designed for local businesses, organizations, clubs, churches, families, etc. to learn about local inshore fishing in a group setting. Homeschooling has been a great addition to Redfish University. This morning’s course was awesome with a great group of eight fellas, some of which are out fishing right now and have texted me some nice redfish and trout photos already. The Redfish U. Homeschooling rate is $100 per person/6 person minimum. Most will burn that in a day or two looking for fish. Why not trailer your boat and go to the fish directly?

With the 21 Redfisher being rigged with a brand new Yamaha SHO 250 and the Pathfinder 2300 HPS on it’s way, I am fishing on a familiar little “workhorse” for a week, the 1997 Maverick MA. My tournament partner, Sonny, and I used this boat for prefishing for the Redfish Cup and is now covered in logos from a company I owed and created called Anglertube. Another story for another day. The boat also holds sentimental value as it also belonged to my friend, Bob Quarles. Solid, dependable boat but now it has a tower with a steering wheel on it. Gay. Anyway, the boat apparently still produces mounds of fish!

Wednesday’s guide trip in Destin was an instructional and fish catching adventure. Launched down at Hogtown Bayou with a few guys that just wanted to learn how to catch redfish and trout on artificial baits. Travelled to the mouth and cove areas around Hogtown Bayou and found plenty of schools of mullet. Started launching Johnson 1/4oz Gold Spoons with 12# fluoro and it wasn’t long before redfish were flopping around the boat. No really big ones but all 21-24″. I’ve never seen two more enthusiastic and excited guys. I had to explain that it’s not always this easy!! Turned the corner and found some quality speckled trout in 3-5′ of water including a big 4# fish. We probably got 15-20 trout and the guys were equally as impressed. Travelled east to some more banks littered with docks. Had to show the fellas what some difficult redfish looked like. Saw plenty, lots of nicely placed casts and I ended up fooling one eventually. Backed off them and blindcasted a few more. Great trip and they kept a few fish for dinner.

Yesterday’s trip over in East Bay was awesome! I guided two really cool anglers from Michigan, Judy and Gordie. These guys were down for their 10th anniversary and had never caught a redfish or speckled trout. They came to the right place. Started slowly with some great speckled trout and then started to get some very consistent redfish bites. Our limit in trout came quickly and our redfish limit was missed several times. Lots of unbuttoned redfish but we did get three quality redfish in the cooler including a 26 and a 27 inch fish on the dot. Gordie kept me in stitches all afternoon with classic joke after joke! Really a quick and clever guy. My kinda guy. A few of my favorites were, “I wouldn’t sh-t you, you’re my favorite turd” and “a gull which flies over the sea is a seagull. Would a gull that flies over the bay be call a bagel(baygull)?” All afternoon! I have a great time with all my clients but I hope to see Judy and Gordie really soon like in April! Anyway, we probably caught 40 trout and 6 redfish with as many coming off after burning drag and at the boat. Kept 10 solid trout and 3 24-27″ redfish. All other fish released. No fishing this weekend but a full slate of Redfish U trips next week. See ya then, E Holstman

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