For the past week – the fishing has been SICK. It’s been so good, we’ve had trouble deciding what to target! The king mackerel bite has simply been on fire from the ARs all the way to the stream (there are lot – we’ve been getting boat limits with absolute ease or we’ve been catching a few and moving on to the mahi. There have been good weedlines within 25 miles – all of them loaded with dolphin. While most of the fish have been in the 4-10lb range – there are decent numbers of gaffers mixed in. The real fun has been all the HUGE AMBERJACKS we’ve hooked and lost – most are so big that my tackle is no match for them. I’m getting a 40lb stand-up out-fit ready so we can tangle with these big brutes. The real pleasure has been fishing on my brand new deep-vee PArker 23′ – she rides and fishes like a dream.
Well, I’m going to include some photos from some of my recent trips (I forgot my camera on two consecutive days!). This week has been absolutely exhausting – so im going to keep the report short and just high-light some of the best moments.
Open dats: July (11 or 12), 14, 15, 16 + more later in the month.
Today I fished with the Winchester party – Oliver and Mark. And we put a hurtin’ on ’em. We started off with the kings, wearing them out and landing several nice teenagers. We then moved on to a a weedline which was loaded with mahi – we could barely troll 5 minutes without getting knockdown and i spent the entire time rigging ballyhoo…we could have easily limited out but decided to try to catch them using jigs and light spinning rods…casting to the weed patches. We landed a half-dozen doing that – LOTS of fun!
1)We had something that high a live beeliner on the surface, dumped a TLD-20 and then, after 10-15 minutes, tail-whipped the line. Big King, Wahoo, Shark? Who knows.
2)We had a big gaffer dolphin try to eat a small 8lb bull dolphin right next to the boat – he couldnt get it in his mouth.
3)To end the day I took a 2lb bailer dolphin and stuck it down on the Down-rigger over some structure – it was inhaled quickly. The mystery fish dumped 500+ yds of line before going deep and running away from the structure. It would shake it’s head in quick little groups occasionally – MArk fought it for 40+ mins before it bent two big trebles straight.
Today I had Larry and Anne on board – experienced boaters that are new to saltwater fishing…and eager to learn. It was slick calm and we started off with the kings before moving ot the dolphin around lunch time. The king bite was read hot to start off with – while they would not hit frozen baits of live menhaden, they would smack a live cigar minnow as soon as we put it out. We ended up keeping 7, with an 18, a 20 and a 25lb.
After that – it was on to the dolphin. I found a small half-a$$ broken up line and decided to give it a shot. Well, it was loaded with fish – i could keep three lines in without one of them going off. We had tons of short strikes, jumped off several fish and kept a dozen or so before making the run back inshore.
Today I fished with Nick and his son Josh – both of whom are serious anglers with an awesome passion for fishing. We wanted to get some pullage and went to the king grounds. The day started off nice and we found a RED HOT king bit instantly. I couldn’t get more than one line out before getting a knockdown – we landed several (including on about 18lbs) before we were BLITZED by a school of big amberjacks – one, who was trying to eat Josh’s king, was easily over 70lbs. I fired them up with some menhaden and we had three on before we knew what happened. Nick hooked up with a monster that was no match for my 20lb gear (im taking care of that problem with a 40lb set-up). Josh ended up fighting one for almost an hour and he expertly got it to the boat – that fish would have brought most grown men to their kness…but not 13 yr old Josh!
As we fought that last AJ, the find picked up and evidently it killed the King bite. But…in their palce was a good number of mahi. We picked away at them, bringing a half-dozen to the boat and jumping off several. Awesome day guys!!
Today I fished with Wayne and Fred – the weather was a bit choppier than forcast but very fishable. We found the kings where we left them quickly putting several in the box. As there was a ripping current, combined with the wind, it was harder to fish today – but we still did very well. It was a little too choppy to go out to the weedlines but we had good fishing to work with. They decied to keep two limits of kings and a couple dolphin. We lost several smoker kings and a few dolphin – including one I dropped over board when i tried to bail it in… sorry about that Fred – i still feel bad!
The highlight of hte day was a huge mystery fish that Wayne fought for close to 25 minutes. It hit a live-beeliner on the downrigger and ran on the surface nearly spooling a TLD-20. We chased it down as the fish turned into the current and almost towed the boat. The battle ended when the fish turned and i maneuvered the boat in the chop – Wayne braced himself for the move and the fish found a little slack and popped the line. Well, for the third time, my 40lb set-up should take care of that problem!!