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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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  #1  
Old 09-28-2017, 02:13 PM
Francis Daignault Francis Daignault is offline
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Default Scared Of the Dark ....

Ever noticed how some guys act fishing at night? I can spot fear of darkness a mile away. Its a generalization but I think city guys are more ascared than sheetkickers like me. Got any night fear stories?
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Old 09-29-2017, 11:24 AM
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Default Re: Scared Of the Dark ....

I don't have any cool dark stories, except the time I didn't see my backcast (cuz it was dark) and I planted a 3/0 black deceiver into my upper lip.

But I don't think that's what you meant
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Old 09-29-2017, 12:30 PM
Francis Daignault Francis Daignault is offline
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Default Re: Scared Of the Dark ....

When a writer you are always watching for behavioral traits. You become a student of people's idiesyncratics. Some are mysterious and impossible to explain. Others imply things. In my life on the beach, particularly on the Cape where there were a lot of surf men, I used to watch how a guy would pull up, investigate my wife and I, then move on. A surprising number would shine their lights all over their buggy before getting back in to drive off. Don't know what they were afraid of but they feared something. They only did this in the dark.
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Old 09-29-2017, 01:37 PM
Chris Garrity Chris Garrity is offline
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Default Re: Scared Of the Dark ....

The only time I really got scared, like almost-shitting-my-pants scared, was when I distrurbed a great blue heron that I never saw. That noise, on a very, very quiet night, nearly scared the sheet out of me. It's a story I have told here before.

What I've found cool about getting accustomed to the dark, about learning to be comfortable in an environment that society tell you to fear, is how much I enjoy it. I have gotten to the point where I so much prefer fishing in the dark that fishing during the day almost feels unnatural to me. I dig the dark.
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Old 09-29-2017, 02:54 PM
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Default Re: Scared Of the Dark ....

I cannot admit to being that comfortable in the dark, but along the salt environs that I frequent, there is enough ambient light on most nights, up and down the coast, that I've never ever gotten the heebeejeebies.

However, I can say that I was more spooked up along the upper Delaware at night with the bats that kept coming at my flies, the knowledge that bears hung out around where I fished, and the various other non-human creatures that go bump in the night. I did it for the browns, but never felt like I could totally relax. I never was sure if the snakes were nocturnal, I hate to this day walking into big freegin spider webs, even though the spiders usually are just pissed that you messed up their work and skeedadle off of you as fast as they can, unless they are "trapped", then you get bit.

The most annoying thing at night is having to turn on the light to deal with backlashes or tangles or mangled flies or ....
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Old 09-29-2017, 03:57 PM
Merlin Merlin is online now
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Default Re: Scared Of the Dark ....

Walking off the east wall on the trail in dark with some dim light I found myself in a herd, flock of skunks. I froze and walked forward with the speed of a snail or maybe a tad slower. Looking back I wish I had a light to give me a preview.
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Old 09-29-2017, 06:47 PM
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Default Re: Scared Of the Dark ....

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Garrity View Post
The only time I really got scared, like almost-shitting-my-pants scared, was when I distrurbed a great blue heron that I never saw. That noise, on a very, very quiet night, nearly scared the sheet out of me. It's a story I have told here before.

What I've found cool about getting accustomed to the dark, about learning to be comfortable in an environment that society tell you to fear, is how much I enjoy it. I have gotten to the point where I so much prefer fishing in the dark that fishing during the day almost feels unnatural to me. I dig the dark.
I cannot admit to being that comfortable in the dark, but along the salt environs that I frequent, there is enough ambient light on most nights, up and down the coast, that I've never ever gotten the heebeejeebies.

However, I can say that I was more spooked up along the upper Delaware at night with the bats that kept coming at my flies, the knowledge that bears hung out around where I fished, and the various other non-human creatures that go bump in the night. I did it for the browns, but never felt like I could totally relax. I never was sure if the snakes were nocturnal, I hate to this day walking into big freegin spider webs, even though the spiders usually are just pissed that you messed up their work and skeedadle off of you as fast as they can, unless they are "trapped", then you get bit.

The most annoying thing at night is having to turn on the light to deal with backlashes or tangles or mangled flies or ....

edit: and Chris, I pissed my waders during the day when an unknown Great Blue Heron was mad at me for disturbing his or her favorite trout pool, and croaked screeched about 3' over my head, from a tree branch where it was perched without my knowledge. Literally had my heart jump when I heard that prehistoric sound.

Merlin, I would've been paralyzed
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Old 09-30-2017, 04:48 PM
Francis Daignault Francis Daignault is offline
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Default Re: Scared Of the Dark ....

Quote:
Originally Posted by Merlin View Post
Walking off the east wall on the trail in dark with some dim light I found myself in a herd, flock of skunks. I froze and walked forward with the speed of a snail or maybe a tad slower. Looking back I wish I had a light to give me a preview.
You have to carry a light when night fishing. You just have to be discreet about when and how you use it.
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Old 10-01-2017, 08:55 AM
ccod16 ccod16 is offline
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Default Re: Scared Of the Dark ....

Was fishing at night on the Canal about a week ago or so. Very dark ,eerie,foggy, and rainy night. In comes a gigantic cruise ship The Insignia( looked it up close to 600 feet in length). Thought that thing was was headed for the pile of rock I was standing on. Watched in awe and some terror as that thing went thru Canal.
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Old 10-01-2017, 10:24 AM
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Default Re: Scared Of the Dark ....

I can remember years ago , went on a date to the local picture show . " Jaws " was the main feature . After the girlfriend drop off the guys got together to hit the beach , while still dark plugging away on Cupsogue beach. On every splash I had this disturbing feeling that would not go away .
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Old 10-01-2017, 12:51 PM
Redando Redando is offline
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Default Re: Scared Of the Dark ....

While wading the back bays and rivers at night during late spring, summer, early fall I would jump into orbit every time a horseshoe crab tried to mount my foot. It often happened multiple times per night....Every time it would startle the hell out of me.

I can guarantee if I was wading outer cape cod beaches at night I would be very nervous. I've seen way to many videos lately of Great Whites ripping apart seals less than a cast off the beach.. It's just a matter of time until a surer or surfcaster wading out to a bar gets attacked on Cape Cod.
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Old 10-02-2017, 07:16 AM
brucelieb brucelieb is offline
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Default Re: Scared Of the Dark ....

I find the night welcoming and peaceful.
Nobody on the beach, nobody on the road... quiet....

But a pain in the XXX! Tangles my hands are cold don't know where my lure is going... blah blah wha wha... so I should just shut up and fish and get used to it..
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Old 10-02-2017, 11:33 AM
Francis Daignault Francis Daignault is offline
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Default Re: Scared Of the Dark ....

Media attention to sharks always gets a lot of anglers spooky. Now that the Cape is so great white inhabited, no doubt it is happening to a lot of guys. I'm hearing that there are way less surfcasters on the Cape ...no doubt for a lot of reasons.

I never go into the wild -- beach or woods -- without some kind of weapon. You only get one life and you are dead for a long time.
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Old 10-07-2017, 11:06 PM
clambellies clambellies is offline
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Default Re: Scared Of the Dark ....

This year I've noticed a whole new breed of "scared of the dark" anglers along the Canal. They're all sporting million candlepower headlamps and they leave them on the entire time they're fishing. I spend the night squinting trying to maintain my night vision. Every time they even glance in your general direction they paint you with light.

One busy weekend night, both sides of the Canal looked like a Light Saber battle scene from Star Wars.
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  #15  
Old 10-09-2017, 02:43 PM
Francis Daignault Francis Daignault is offline
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Default Re: Scared Of the Dark ....

Clear evidence that these Canal guys are afraid of the dark. Its common in the striper surf. There are some surfmen who check you out with lights to determine evidence of catching fish. It is both scared guys and snoops.
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