Today was an interesting day, to say the least. The fishing was not hot and heavy but all the bites we got were solid, awesome fish – to top it off we saw just about every weird sight you can imagine – all of this will be explained in my following narrative.
David and his wife, both from the greater DC area, are very experienced fisherman – both being avid Ches. Bay anglers. They’ve never been to the beaufort/morehead area before and wanted to get a handle on things for their week of vacation -so they hired me for a full day to teach them a bit about the local style of fishing. (Full days are great as they really allow me to show my clients a variety of bites and tactics.) Dave is also a veteran of offshore fishing charters and wanted to get a good pull on light tackle – and since i found a king bite the day before, it was right up his alley.
I motored out to my “spot,” and with no boats in sight, we put out the baits and began a nice slow troll over a good hump. The action was slow in the beginning – but we had a group of several dozen dolphins (the mammal) entertaining us with their acrobatics. About sixty minutes or so into our troll, i decided to change some of the baits out – and in the process of letting a bait out – i got a savage strike in the propwash. I missed the fish and decided to put out another bait while dave reeled in the 2nd surface bait a bit closer – within 30 seconds, the rod in my hand started screaming while a 15lb king came rocketing out of the water and skyed right on dave’s bait. Another leep later, dave was in battle mode as the fish made the drag scream. While my fish pulled the hook before i could hand the rod off – dave fought and boated his nice king.
Ten minutes later, i had two more pogies out when i had another quick strike – the fish dropped the bait and as i pulled it in to check it – in comes a 6-8 foot HAMMERHEAD shark following the remains of the pogie. I don’t see a lot of hammerheads in our waters, but they are truly a magnificant animal – i was in awe watching it cruise under the boat barely five feet from us. Twenty seconds later he smashed the second line – a short and furious battle ensued but Mr. Hammerhead ended up winning the battle breaking the line a few minutes in. A shark of 100+ pounds is a battle on any gear…
An hour or so later we managed another great strike and Dave’s wife expertly brought in a nice 20lb king to the gaff. The other bit of weird news is that during this time we witnessed probably more than a dozen sailfish jumps within a mile or so of our location – one within 50 yards of the boat (jumped six times) – it seemed as if they were everywhere (except on my baits, of course).
We worked our way back towards shore to try to get some flounder in the box – we found the bite very slow at one of the nearshore wrecks and after a few shorts and one keeper we tried another spot. This place is where the bite was at – we couldnt keep our baits on the bottom and we were hooking up with flounder and baby gag grouper as soon as the bait hit the bottom – also in the mix were some very big spaniards and dink kings – dave boated a short king and after a long fight, broke off a very large mystery mackeral (king, spanish? we only know it was big!) – people don’t realized how much fun those fish are on light spinning tackle!!!!
These folks were great and made for a very memorable day on the water – we traded stories the entire day and ended with a bunch of great memories. Always a pleasure! I hope I end up hearing that they boated a bunch of drum and flatties from the inshore waters this week!