A passion and obsession that will never be satisfied until finally achieving success, the Pursuit of the King takes place in the Keys with Ambassador Forrest Powell. Forrest speaks with us about the on-going battle with all of the elements to get that one eat.
The failure every single day is certainly discouraging, but it's what keeps Forrest and his crew coming back to catch that moment when it all comes together.
Where did you go?
We took a trip from Charleston to the Florida Keys, specifically Summerland Key.
Who did you go with?
Tell us about Scott Ware and how y’all linked up?
We met Scott Ware through the outdoor industry. Scott is a hardcore fly fisherman that loves the game just as much as we do.
What did you do?
Our day started and ended looking for the silver king. The hunt each day created a pursuit like no other.
What does the pursuit mean to you?
The pursuit for these fish creates endless frustration until finally achieving success. It’s a passion and obsession that will never be satisfied.
What makes it all worth it?
The eats and the jumps make it all worth it. The anticipation and excitement when you watch these fish eat your fly is truly like no other.
What makes Keys Tarpon fishing so special?
The Keys is an insane fishery that is filled with good times and big fish.
The tarpon migration through the Keys is some of the best tarpon fishing in the world.
What makes it challenging?
Battling the 20-30 mph winds each day trying to get your cast to lay in front of the lead fish in a string coming down the beach is probably the most challenging. It’s all about fly placement and if that fish you’re trying to feed is happy and looking to eat.
What are you used to fishing for and how is this trip different?
I’m used to fly fishing Lowcuntry flats for redfish, so hunting for tarpon was a whole another game. No fish that you’ve caught in the past can prepare you for catching a tarpon. All hell breaks loose for the next 30 seconds after you hook these fish, from clearing line to bowing to the fish they’re some of the hardest fish to land.
What did your packing list look like?
My packing list consisted of my Free Fly hoodies that were extremely beneficial for our 6-10 hour days on the flats. It also consisted of all of our Sony cameras on deck, drones, and our editing necessities for videos and photos.
How do you balance video and photos with fishing?
Filming and fishing was extremely difficult, especially when you have fish daisy chaining in front of the boat and all you can think about is casting. We managed to keep switching off videoing to give us some time behind the lens and the long rod. We were lucky enough to have Thomas tag along and crush some awesome footage for us.
Boat snacks of choice?
Boat snack of choice would definitely be a blueberry pop-tart. Game changer for sure.