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Captain Joe Sneed was raised in Alice Texas. He started fishing at an early age with his father. With the proximity to the Upper Laguna Madre and Baffin Bay, it is no surprise that Joe is a life-long saltwater angler. Some of Joe’s earliest memories were family vacations to Rockport, Texas, where his grandparents would rent a house for a month each summer. Joe was often low on the pecking order to go out on the boat, competing with the number of older cousins, aunts and uncles, and family friends that would come to visit. On those days, Joe would fish from the dock in the backyard, or walk across the street to wade fish with pin perch that he caught off the dock. On more than one occasion, the boat crew got back to the house to the smell of a fish fry. Joe’s grandmother would cook up his catch frequently.
In 1983, Joe’s father bought a boat rigged for flounder gigging from a boat dealer in Victoria, Texas. Joe, along with his father and brother, would camp out and gig flounder at night, and maybe even do a little rod and reel fishing the next morning. After a couple years of this, Joe wanted more rod and reel action and started bass fishing with a family friend. This led to a passion of fishing with artificial lures. It was not long after this that Joe started fishing with artificial lures in saltwater and suggested to his father that they leave early enough on flounder gigging trips to fish with rod and reel in the afternoon and quit gigging early enough to get some sleep and fish the next morning. It was an awesome experience to cast to tailing reds in the evening, gig some flounder for a few hours, grab some sleep, and then wake up to catch speckled trout.
Captain Joe started fly-fishing in 2005. In the early days of his fly fishing endeavors, Joe would find areas holding good numbers of fish with conventional tackle and then break out the fly rod and still catch fish. The fly rod became Joe’s tool of choice more and more often, and helping others sight cast became the focus of Joe’s fishing effort most of the time. It was then that Joe said goodbye to the full-size bay boat, and said hello to a polling skiff, and he also began tying his own flies.
Today, Captain Joe spends most of his time sight fishing for redfish, but he’s quick to tell people that blind casting known speckled trout hangouts is a great way to fly fish, as well. When not fly fishing for redfish and speckled trout, Captain Joe likes pursuing other game fish with a fly rod and has caught eighteen different species, but he’s still counting!