It was the second day of a week long trip. The weather was cold but otherwise good, and late in the day we ended up as part of a small pack of boats clustered around a creek mouth floating live baits. I had a pan fish rigged to a dual treble quick strike rig dangling beneath a styrofoam float.
After some time had passed, we notice what seem to be unusual behavior from the bait I was using but eventually it settled down. Mike asked "Can your bait do that?" to which I replied, "sure, I think." A few minutes later, it started up again and this time the float went under and stayed there. Mike asked, "Can your bait do THAT?" to which I didn't bother to reply but instead, immediately set the hook. The battle was brief, but the fish jumped several times, one time almost into the boat.
We went to net the fish and realized
that we had outgrown it, and the fish had to be grabbed by hand ("Debbie
Jo'd)" without getting a hook caught in my flesh ("Stange'd"). We eventually
got the fish into the boat, and tried to get the fish unhooked. It had
probably been sitting there chewing my bait for some time, and the fish
was deeply hooked. We did the best we could, and the fish seemed strong
when it swam off, but we left hooks inside and from that point I knew that
bolt cutters should be part of my equipment.