by Lawson Builder
I was born and raised in Hilton Head Island, SC and find my way back home once or twice every month or two. It's only a short drive from Charleston and a great opportunity to visit family and escape the crowds for small tidal creeks where the raccoons and deer in the marsh are the only other ones to walk across the flat bordering the creeks.
When wading a low tide creek if you don't suit up in coveralls or waders, every inch of your body up to your waist will basically be coated in pluffmud. No worries in the Summer, but the post-fishing spray down isn't very fun in the cold. Coveralls it is.
So, geared up and ready to rumble, I started across the flat toward the first creek bend where I know a couple fish like to sit. The water was clear up to about a foot and half, but no fish were hanging around so it's on to the next one. I plopped myself next to a small sandbar in the creek and made a few casts into a deeper pool. I saw some subtle movement and made a cast in front of it. There he is! After a quick fight and a slide down a mudbank I was able to grab the redfish and send him on his way.
The light's getting low at this point, but I should be able to squeeze one more in. I made the long, sinking walk to the next spot I like to hit (not thinking about the fact it's shallow like the first, and empty, spot). I got all the way there to find no fish. Time to cross the creek (cold feet) and find one last deep pocket. I found myself a small, deep pocket and made a few casts. As my line hit the water a fish spooked. I quickly picked up and put it in front of the fish. Bam, one more on the board.
Now I don't normally take my camera on a muddy adventure like this, but I figured I'd be doing this post. Point being, excuse any out of focus photos! It's a bit hard to take a photo with muddy hands, sliding down banks, and a fish to worry about. So, there's that. At this point the sun's below the treeline and it's cooling down. Time to go home.
A little PSA: If you want advice on low tide wading, I'd highly recommend asking someone else. I'd imagine there's plenty of people who do it significantly less messy than I do!