An afternoon on the water with a grand champion

When you fish as much as I do, fishing trip memories tend to run together. However, every year there is one trip that clearly stands out — fishing with the grand champion of the Daniel Island Kids Fishing Tournament. 

Isla Gustafson is the reigning 2019 champion and I had the pleasure of fishing with her and her dad, Trent, on June 22. Our plan was to meet around 3 p.m. and fish the incoming tide. This provided the best opportunity for fast action with a variety of fish species.

This time of year, everything with fins and teeth is eating shrimp. To stack the “fast action” odds in our favor, I launched the Pathfinder a few minutes early and caught some shrimp for bait.  Upon returning to the dock, Isla and Trent were waiting. We loaded up and headed out. To tell the truth, I think I was more excited than Isla was.

As we idled away from the boat landing, a thunderstorm was brewing off in the distance.  A quick look at the weather radar confirmed it was heading our way. So, I decided to fish areas close to the boat landing. Our first stop was a shallow creek that drained into an oyster-lined channel. The area looked good, but all we caught was a stingray. I was disappointed, but the stingray was a wonderment to Isla. She was enjoying herself and that made me very happy.

After a quick move down river, to catch the first of the incoming tide, we deployed rattle floats with a live shrimp suspended a couple feet below on a No. 2 Kahle hook. In short order, Isla caught several trout, a flounder and a nice redfish to complete her inshore slam. Once again, I was more excited than she was, and she was pretty excited!

My trip with Isla was truly memorable. She is thoughtful, polite and has great enthusiasm for fishing. It is my sense that Trent has a fishing partner for life. It is my hope that they share a life-time of fishing memories together.

Contact Captain Greg Peralta at or call (843) 224-0099.

Daniel Island Publishing

225 Seven Farms Drive
Unit 108
Daniel Island, SC 29492 

Office Number: 843-856-1999
Fax Number: 843-856-8555


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