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Fun fishing!

The Palm Beaches to Key Largo

Moderator: admin

Fun fishing!

Postby The BEAST » Tue Jan 07, 2014 10:10 am

We had a couple of ¾ day trips during the holiday rush. The first day we did a morning to afternoon run with Ted, Michele, Gage, and Rose. We met up at the dock for a 7AM start. We did a quick meet and greet and shoved off.

We tried for a few Hardtails but they weren’t cooperating too well that morning, so we made a run to dig up some worms. As we entered into the reef areas we noticed that the waters were still a bit of a mess but that didn’t seem to affect the bait fishing on the previous trip. We arrived on the patch and put out our chum. The worms came up in swarms. I love it when a plan comes together. They were eating the hooks and in no time we had some primo hookers in the well. I made a few tosses with the cast net and we were blue water bound.

Arriving on the edge, we were greeted with some lumpy water. The conditions were a bit better, comfort wise, than our previous trips. Devon put out a 3 up / 1 down spread and we commenced to fishing. About 10 minutes into it and we had a top line buzz off. Wow! This is a strong fish and we were trying to guess what it could be. After a better than average length of time, we see some color down below. No way! It’s an Amberjack!?! How unusual to catch an AJ this time of year and a surface bite no less. We pulled this thick 19 pounder aboard and took a quick photo before releasing.

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The fishing was a bit slow and we missed a few bites here and there. As we were covering some water the sonar showed some good looking bottom. Devon dropped the down rod to within a few feet of the bottom and we began to get some bites. Something small had worked over our baits twice but the third time was the charm. We’re hooked up, but not getting too excited because this fish is small. Gage worked him to the top quickly to find a very young Atlantic Sharpnose shark.

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We continued to cover water to the north and this time the mid depth rod lit up. We have a tough one on this time. Ted works up a sweat and the fish plays a give and take game with his line. 10-12 minutes pass and we see color. You have got to be kidding me! It’s another AJ! This fish is a bit larger though, tipping the scales at about 30 pounds. What the heck is this? We took some photos and turned him loose.

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As we moved into the afternoon we had several kingfish cut offs and numerous raids by Ocean Tally. We were determined to do our best to get a Sailfish hooked up before the early quitting time. Suddenly the rigger line gets slapped and we have a fish on. The fish fought strong but we knew it wasn’t what we were looking for. When the fish came to the boat it was a nice 8# Yellowjack. This day was very odd because these are fish we normally catch when working wrecks. Oh well, they are strong fighters and we’ll take whatever is given to us.

The fat lady is warming up for her closing song and we begin tossing out our leftover baits. Nothing… nothing… Bada Bing!!! Devon yells “Sailfish!” The fish takes the short rigger bait and Devon hands the rod off to Gage. A short drop back, flip the bail, and he comes tight, Fish on, Brother! Gage worked the fish pretty well and the fight didn’t take too long. 15-20 minutes later and Devon was grabbing the bill for a photo shoot.

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There is nothing like performing some magic and pulling the proverbial “rabbit out of the hat” at the last minute. A perfecting ending to this short but peculiar day.

We had another ¾ day with GH, Andy, Emme, and Winnie. They didn’t want to get up early while on vacation so we opted to do a 10AM blast off. This tends to work out better for catching Sailfish right before dark. We’ll see what happens!

We headed out on this unusually calm day and the group was happy to see the light winds and calm seas. A great day for a boat ride! Oh boy! I opted to run straight out after the Ballyhoo. The bait situation has been really good so I wasn’t too concerned. As we neared our usual spot, I see someone is already using the area. We ran a bit further south and the water was approaching slack tide. Uh oh. We need to get this done quickly. 5 minutes and no sign of any worms. When we hit the 10 minute mark I fired up The BEAST and we made a run for another area. 5 minutes on this patch and I see nothing and I am beginning to sweat. I saw a flash and then noticed them moving in toward the boat. We began hooking them with good results. After we had about 2 or 3 dozen hookers aboard I tossed the cast net twice and had plenty.

We made our run out to the edge and set up, this time running 4 up and 1 down. We had a beautiful day but I must tell you it was definitely a boat riding day more than a fishing day. We did have a couple of swings and misses but the hookups were few. We had a small Sharpnose shark hook up like the previous trip… no, he wasn’t that small. He was big enough to do a water release. We had a spell catching some large Barracuda in the 20+ bracket and missed a few bites as well.

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I saw a good bait ball on the sonar and Devon tossed a small speed jig. Hook up! It was a good Yellowjack on the line. When he was about to be boated, a monstrous Barracuda came out of the depths and took over half of the fish right in front of the girls. What a show!

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We moved out of the area and started concentrating on getting them a Sailfish. There’s a bust in the spread and we have a small fish on. As Andy brings the fish to the surface it is another Yellowjack. What the heck is going on? This is absurd! Oh well, at least they are excellent on the table.

We continued to work north as some time ticks off the clock and we missed a couple of Kingfish on the top baits. Suddenly Devon sees a bill poke out of the water on one of our baits. It’s a Sail! We gave him good time on the bait drop back and he gave us a dropped bait back. Crap! We continued working the area as the sunlight begins to wane. Devon begins to chum out the extra baits and the Frigate birds are having a buffet. As I made a few circles around the free baits, we were about to pull the plug on the day. One of the loose baits begins skittering off. A sail rises out of the water, then the fishes back appears. Devon and I didn’t have to say a word, both of us seeing it at the same time. He’s on the “freebies”! Ok… let’s hang around for a few more minutes. There he is on the short flat line. Feed him, the lines peeling out, Andy flips the bail, and it’s FISH ON! This Sail is a good one and he is melting the 20# test off the spinning reel. I turned the boat and began gaining line back. The fish makes another spectacular run and on the last jump he turns toward the boat. Andy says “He’s gone!” and stops reeling. Reel! Done deal. He’s gone now for sure. They are masters at spitting the hook if you give them any slack line. Andy felt bad but “Hey, you can’t win them all!” He has vowed revenge.

Our day was relatively slow compared to what has been going on out there. This family was just happy to have a nice day on the water and be away from the 20 degree weather in Boston. Stay tuned, there is more coming!

Capt. Jim
The BEAST
305-233-9996
beastcharters@aol.com
www.beastcharters.com
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The BEAST
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Joined: Tue Jun 06, 2006 2:22 pm
Location: Miami/upper Keys

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