Tarpon: The Hillary Clinton Fish

May 11, 2008 By: Marshall Cutchin

As I was explaining tarpon behavior to Patagonia fishing product designer Steve Straqualersi earlier this week, it occurred to me that a hooked tarpon behaves very much like a certain presidential candidate. “Give a tarpon any amount of leeway,” I suggested, “and they will fight forever. You need to fight them from the moment you get them on the reel, and make them think they don’t have a chance.”
Sue Cocking’s recent experience with a large Key West tarpon had her wishing she had picked a less experienced fish. “For the next 20 minutes, the wicked fish alternately charged away on after-burner, or turned and aimed itself like a torpedo at the boat. A couple of times, it surfaced briefly to gulp air, but it never jumped again. ‘Something tells me this fish has been down this road before,’ I puffed to [Captain Tom] Pierce.” In the Miami Herald.