Eric Hines, Team Eye Strike
What do you like most about fishing? Hearing the drag peel off the reel! Is there really a better sound in the world? My go-to setup for fishing is always ultra light tackle, so hooking into a 5 lb corvina on 6 lb line with a 4 ft rod and hearing the drag sing gets my blood pumping every time. The solitude of fishing in Mexico is also one of my favorites. Many mornings we watch the sunrise over the water with just the sound of a few fish breaking the surface and osprey diving for breakfast. One of the unique advantages of fishing in Peñasco is having the ability to take your day’s catch to the local restaurants. Lunch of “whole fried fish” caught just hours before is a family favorite. Eating fresh fish tacos while looking out over the Sea of Cortez is an experience I hope to enjoy for years to come.
How did you start fishing? I have to credit my love of fishing to my father and brother. My father used to take us trout fishing in northern Arizona when we were kids. Though we spent more time catching crayfish and tangling lines, the fishing bug was planted. In elementary school our family was introduced to Puerto Peñasco, Mexico by a family friend. Located in the Northeastern part of the Sea of Cortez, “Rocky Point” is about 220 miles straight south of Phoenix, Arizona and is known as “Arizona’s Beach.” My family fell in love with the once sleepy fishing and shrimping town, with its bright blue water and endless sandy beaches. It wasn’t long before we bought a place to stay for our visits and were headed down a few times a month. My brother and I would spend from sunrise to sunset fishing the tide pools and teaching ourselves to fish salt water from the beach. It was a whole new world of fishing for us. With every cast you could catch new species of fish you had never seen before. Over the years we have honed our skills to catch the types of fish we like to eat from the beach. Our primary places to fish now are the estuaries of Peñasco, which are known for their oyster farms and extreme tides. Parking on the edge of the water and casting for corvina and flounder is our favorite way to spend the day. When the waters off shore are calm we load up the Kayak to see if we can get into grouper and spotted bass. Even when the fish aren’t biting, sitting back under an umbrella on the beach with a cold drink never disappoints.
What are your other interests? Spending time with family is where you will normally find me when I am not fishing. I married my amazing wife Leigh on the beach in Puerto Peñasco and we have a daughter, Sophie, and twins Daniel and Kellie. Lucky for me, my wife and kids love spending time at the beach which gives me more time for my primary interest – fishing! I also love all things outdoors, from back-packing to scuba diving, and I am always up for a new adventure.
What is your favorite Eye Strike product? You will find a Trout Eye jighead in Pearl paired with a Z-Man MinnowZ 3″ in Pearl Blue Glimmer rigged on a most of my rods. This combo is so versatile for our type of fishing. When the corvina and leatherjackets are around we can fish the lure near the surface to match the schooling bait fish. During the winter months we bounce the lure off the bottom for flounder and spotted bass. My personal best catches of both corvina and flounder have been landed on this combo.
What do most people not know about you? I am really not a fan of shoes. I work in the financial industry, which requires me to wear a shirt and tie five days a week. As soon as I come home it’s back to shorts, t-shirt, and flip flops. You will find me in flip flops nearly year round, which is something you can get away with in Arizona. When I am in Mexico I rarely wear shoes at all. Sand between the toes is the way to go for me!
Anything else you’d like to add? One of the best fishing trips of my life was successful in a big way thanks to Eye Strike Fishing. I had always heard about the famous Mosquito Lagoon on the East coast of Florida and finally got a chance to make a trip back East, tagging along for a work conference that my wife was attending in Orlando. The trip was in December, so my expectations were not set high. Each day in Florida I drove an hour and a half out to the Lagoon to try my hand at adding new species to my catch list. I really didn’t know what to expect, but I had my favorite Trout Eye with MinnowZ setup ready to go. Over three days of wading around different parts of the Lagoon I caught speckled trout, snook, and red drum, all thanks to my trusted Eye Strike lures. I take these lures on all my fishing trips knowing that “Predators Strike The Eye!”