An E-mail from Jeff McCrea

A true fishing testimonial from a HAPPY BarHopp'R client. Read about Jeff McCrea's experience with Capt. Butch Rickey, one of the top native Florida fishing guides, backcountry fishing and flats fishing in the waters of Pine Island Sound around Sanibel Island, Captiva Island, Pine Island, and occassionally, Sarasota Bay.
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Good day Capt. Butch,

I finally arrived back in Gainesville from South Texas. I do not understand the allure of that state. I prefer to be much closer to an oyster bar in Southwest Florida!!

Given the boat/weather situation when we fished I was a little apprehensive as to our success. A strong west wind blowing for a week finally died the morning of our trip. Capt. Butch was right on time (6AM) at our prearranged meeting point...The Waterfront Restaurant. He did not pick me up with a live well full of bait! He wants his clients to experience everything! I was pitchin' chum and pinching heads off bait stuck in the net. We got plenty of bait for 1 client and 2 fisherman. That is something to see!

The Gulf was still "smokin" when we tried to get outside to try for snook on the beach. This little boat ride seemed to last the whole morning. I was ready to fish!! After Capt. Butch cancelled the "outside" plans it was time to implement plan "B". After backtracking what seemed like the whole length of Pine Island Sound we finally stopped on a very insignificant looking flat. I did not know Butch was an electrical engineer either but he managed to get the trolling motor running and get us in position to anchor.

I have fished all my life and the next 2 1/2 hours turned out to be nothing less than remarkable! Between the "Chum Chunker" and the remarkable similarities between the "Snook Call" and the "Redfish Call", I was thoroughly entertained while fighting numerous snook and "studley" redfish. At 11:00 AM the tide stopped...the fish quit and I was more than happy to return to the Waterfront. What a trip!!

In closing, one point I would like to thank Butch for is the wonderful "education" I received regarding tackle, landing fish, and general "how to". His patience in trying to overcome my "bad habits" was humbling. One word of advice for the guys though...leave your ego on the dock and pay will catch fish. Thanks Butch!!

Jeff Mccrea

Jeff McCrea Testimonial

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