So I’m down in the Louisiana Delta this week chasing redfish around the marsh, and yesterday something happened that I’ve heard a lot about, but never experienced first hand. I pitched a popping cork and jig up against this cane bank, and all of a sudden there’s a wake a lot bigger than a redfish’s headed my way. And fast.


This five-foot gator was on a mission. It could care less how close it got the boat, wasn’t scared of us at all, and clamped down on the popping cork just a few feet from the end of my rod tip. He let it go quick, and I was left with a souvenir cork with some nice teeth marks. By all accounts a mild encounter, but I bet some of you have better stories. What non-fish species have lashed onto your line? A friend of mine actually landed a gator a little smaller than this one on a Heddon Spook. It came up from below unexpectedly, and not wanting to leave the poor guy swimming around with a face full of treble hooks, he wrenched it in close enough for his guide to pop the lure loose with a net handle.