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Ask Frank Daignault Frank Daignault is recognized as an authority on surf fishing for striped bass. He is the author of six books and hundreds of magazine articles. Frank is a member of the Outdoor Writers of America and lectures throughout the Northeast.

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  #46  
Old 11-20-2009, 12:01 PM
John_P John_P is offline
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Default Re: A Tribute to Al Bentsen

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Originally Posted by fishinglsister View Post
Thank you John! As for your "water taxi" I'm sorry you and Al never hooked up with that over the past few years. It would have been good for him to have someone there to fish who could get to spots that were otherwise inaccessable. Do you know Pat D'Andrea from Seaford? I tried to get Al to fish with him because I was "concerned" they might "find him" on the marsh some day. Al didn't know Pat so he didn't want to get involved but you he felt good about.
Funny story:when I first found fish at that spot I told Al about it and he left me alone there for years. He didn't want to invade my turf. Only after his spots were "over-run" with "Yahoo's" did I insist he go there with me. I never invited Pat to that spot and in fact never told him where it was. I even tried to "mis-inform" and discourage him by describing the drainage ditch (that is nothing more than a "big step") as "a 5 minute swim"! He found it anyway about 14 years ago when he saw my boat anchored up on the bank. I left right after that so I guess that saved his life.....

Many times I tried to talk Al into getting a small boat to get him to and from "spots" that were otherwise either illegal to park on just outright inaccessable. He never went for it. I think he wanted to stay "pure" in knowing that no one could ever say he "gave in" and went to a boat, even if he only used it like a car.............JC

Jason,

I moved my boat west only this year. I had it in Montauk. I just got tired of being blown out or having to crawl back after the wind picked up. I had every intention of taking Al. Work...family...I don't fish nearly as much as I'd like. And I never know my schedule. I know his son has or had a boat as well. Maybe I agree with him to an extent. You dont see the water the same way from a boat. Sometimes you are going too fast to notice bait or slight differences in current. I never really talked to him about the boat thing, but he brought up kayaking to me many times. I really think he would have tried to Kayak if he had the time and was able. Thats one trait I really liked about him, some could say he was old school, but he always was open minded. And he was all about hearing other people's ideas.
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  #47  
Old 11-20-2009, 01:23 PM
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ragman ragman is offline
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Default Re: A Tribute to Al Bentsen

I'm sure missing the e-mails from Al about what's going on up in New York
One thing about Al, as John mentioned, he was always open to new ideas to catch, even if he was unable to try them himself. I remember one time talking about wet suit fishing. Neither of us was into it, but we discussed the pro and cons. If I remember correctly, we both concluded it was more like fishing from a boat than the beach....
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  #48  
Old 11-20-2009, 03:57 PM
John_P John_P is offline
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Default Re: A Tribute to Al Bentsen

Wetsuiting is like being able to wade up to your neck. But if your get more aggressive, and swim to rocks, its the same as using a boat to get there. Some years ago the LI Surfcasters got into all types of prolonged debates about wetsuiting and whether or not it was surfcasting. Some guys really got the shorts in a twist over it. The final word, per contest organizers varied. One major contest allows you to use a wetsuit, as long as you are terra firma with the bottom while fishing. But another major contest rule book states you cannot even use a wetsuit.

I know Al felt this way, and Jason confirms, at some point you have to get away from the crowds. The kayak, or a boat, can take you to places where you will never want for elbow room, not if you choose to run up in the bay in the shallows.

Back to Al, there were plenty of funny stories. I know up in the Cape he said he used to hide the fish he caught at spot A, but then unload them to the beach at Spot B and begin casting at that spot, especially toward dawn. Let everyone think Spot B was producing.
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  #49  
Old 11-22-2009, 06:55 AM
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fishinglsister fishinglsister is offline
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Default Re: A Tribute to Al Bentsen

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I know Al felt this way, and Jason confirms, at some point you have to get away from the crowds. The kayak, or a boat, can take you to places where you will never want for elbow room, not if you choose to run up in the bay in the shallows.
.

Al is solely responsible for getting me into fishing in the bays. Before I started fishing with him I was strictly a "open beach and jetty guy". The back bays were a whole new world and the big fish were there. Al Bentsen knew that better than anyone. As the technology came out, he would go so far, in later years to send me "Google Earth" (enhansed satalite images) pictures of "special spots" that he scoped out and wanted to know if I'd fished there. Most of them I had never even thought of before and they looked so good! There is a large amount of untapped spots in the bays that can keep a caster busy for years without ever having to worry about other people. I hope to someday fish with Al in all of them.........JC
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  #50  
Old 01-07-2010, 09:38 PM
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Default Re: A Tribute to Al Bentsen

I just found this. There's a few pictures of Al in here, along with some others you all may recognize.


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  #51  
Old 01-08-2010, 10:23 AM
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Default Re: A Tribute to Al Bentsen

Gad,
Thanks for sharing that! As you mentioned, plenty of photos of Al, and even one of one of his son!
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  #52  
Old 03-10-2010, 01:45 PM
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Default Re: A Tribute to Al Bentsen

A series of tributes to Al Bentsen was just published in the Surfcaster's Journal online publication. These tributes were written by three of Al's longtime acquaintances, some of whom are also members here. Well worth a read. I'll refrain from posting a link, since I'm unsure of the protocols.
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Old 04-03-2011, 02:01 PM
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Default Re: A Tribute to Al Bentsen

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A series of tributes to Al Bentsen was just published in the Surfcaster's Journal online publication. These tributes were written by three of Al's longtime acquaintances, some of whom are also members here. Well worth a read. I'll refrain from posting a link, since I'm unsure of the protocols.


I wrote one of those stories and Chuck Leigh wrote one of the others. It is hard to believe that it's been a year and a half already since Al's been gone. It was at this time of year Al and I would fish Manhassett Bay and get some good sized fish on bunker chunks there. As much as he was "pretty much a purist" in the way of rigged eels, fishing bunker chunks was about the only other way he would intentionally go with any enthusiasm.
Sure, he "adapted" on particular outings when it was necessary. Like he would switch to a plug if there were too many blues; but for the record, his 1st choice was always a rigged eel. He knew if there was a 50 there he could get it.
Al will always be missed............JC
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