We came off the bait patch and had our first opportunity at a sail almost immediately but that one did not eat, 10 minutes later we found a second sailfish and that one did. That was great way to start the day and it stayed pretty good all day as Bruce and Billie caught 5 muttons and 8 or 9 yellowtail snapper. This was their second trip with us this week and although both days were good , today was a much better weather day with less wind.
The one shark we were able to talk Elizabeth into fighting we didn't catch but it was a screamer and we ended up pulling the hook after 20 minutes or so. I think our lady was a little relieved that she didn't have to go more rounds with that fish as it was wearing her down with it's strength. Jon caught the rest of the 6 or 7 sharks and the were all really big also but they didn't compare to Elizabeth's fish. All in all a fun evening with our neighbors from north of the border and I hope we see them again some time we they can get back to the keys.
Aden was our pro angler today catching the most and biggest. It looked a little sketchy as we started out down the channel with a large black cloud in front of us but other then getting a little rain it didn't affect our morning half much. We sat down and caught a decent number of yellowtail snapper after first chasing a sailfish around that did not want to eat. Caught a few muttons after that but unlike yesterday only had one that was legal. Thanks guys and we will see you again next year. Great job Aden!!
Dottie is holding the biggest of our 7 mutton snapper caught today with the help of her cousin Billie and her husband Bruce. Missed a bunch of kings and caught some and caught some nice yellowtail off the bottom also. They have another day scheduled for later in the week and we are looking forward to fishing with them again.
Great way to end the week with Adrian, Leslie and Tony (north Jersey) catching schoolie muttons, a couple big kings and a sailfish. Once again we kept them busy with only a few slow times through out the day. "They will be back" they assured me several times as I cleaned their fish for them to take back to New Jersey.
It is great to live in a place where folks are just happy to be and Diane and her crew were overjoyed to be out of the cold and loving this weather. Kings and a mutton kept them busy for the morning along with a bunch of other fish we turned loose.
With the weather as good as it gets Joe and Elizabeth caught a couple mutton’s and our limit of kings today on a morning half and they immediately took their fillets upstairs to wahoo’s restaurant to have them cooked for lunch when we got back. It just doesn’t get any better than that!!
Jim and his crew from Minnesota really enjoyed the nice evening out in Whale Harbor channel, it was a nice respite from this passed weeks cold weather in their state. The sharks were active and I thinks the total was somewhere around 10 or 11 big ones. Our day trip was slow as we saw quite a few sails but did not get any to eat. We did catch 20 yellowtail snapper for Kevin and his crew for dinner and they were looking forward to a nice evening at Lazy Dazes..
Shawn was pretty happy with his 18 lb black grouper even though they are out of season and it had to go back in the water but Meg was even happier with her 1st sailfish. The sails were spraying baits this morning as we left the bait patch and we finally had a spray happen close enough that we could get there before the sail disappeared, David put the bait right where it was needed and the fight was on. Meg did a great job on her first sailfish (even with a small equipment malfunction) and we caught him after a half hour fight.
I was hoping to get them out again this week but the wind came up and the temp dropped, I just couldn't talk them into one more day before they went back . Had a great time with the gang (as usual) even getting them out to help pull our stone crab traps this year! See you next year guys!
We have had better fishing but not many more gorgeous evenings in the channel at Whale Harbor than we had tonight. The water was as clean as it get which probably contributed to the poor bite but it made for good shark and tarpon sighting as they swam around and over our baits. Brian got to catch a couple sharks and that was one of the things he wanted to do in the keys. The plan is to come back next year to catch that tarpon and catch more sharks.
The Jersey Boys are back and we started the week with a pretty catch of snapper. Yellowtail, vermillon and mutton snapper all found their way into our fish box today along with a few king mackerel. Looks like we will have very good weather to start the week but Sunday may be questionable.
Grouper season closed December 31st so this 20 lb black had to go back in the water till May 1st. This is the 3rd nice grouper we have caught since the 1st of the year which I hope bodes well for the grouper season this year. This was Gary's last day till his return next year this time and although we did not see any sails today we did catch muttons, kings, grouper and jacks, keeping him busy while he was hanging on in the rough seas.
Gary fished with us yesterday and it was a little tough, with a cold front, plunging temperatures and a 20 knot wind blowing out of the north we caught fish but not anything great. Today the sails were pushing baits up in the shallow water and we caught 4 out of 5 that we had hooked and a fat yellowjack that beat a sail to the ballyhoo. Tomorrow we have Gary again and maybe we will do the tunas depending on conditions.
We recovered from yesterday pretty well with big yellowtail snapper and kingfish. Frank, Robert and Robert Jr did a good job of catching these large tails which can be challenging for the angler when they reach this size.
I was wishing we had bananas on board today so that I could have thrown them over board after we missed the first 10 bites we had (including a sailfish). It was just one of those unexplainable days when things just don't go as they should. Greg and Chris were understanding as they are hunters and fishermen and know a day like we had can happen. Tomorrow is a brand new day and we get a fresh start ..... I'm looking forward to it.
Bob and his family were with us again this morning on an am half, they had fished with us on the 31st and Jack (Bob's grandson) caught a sail, today it was his brother Dave's turn to catch one. This fish put on a spectacular show for us and Dave did a great job on the rod catching him in the rough seas. Thanks Bob, see you again next year!
We invited Mark and his family along this morning for the blessing of the fleet and after dropping off our other guests we headed out once again into the wind. There was a beautiful color change out in 200 ft and a mahi found us while we waited for a sailfish bite but we didn't encounter anything else. We moved inside to the shallower water and hoped to give our ladies a little reprieve from the big waves in the deeper water. Mark finally decided it was time to get the ladies back to land but as we crossed the reef I spotted a sail on the surface, Dave got the bait to him and 45 minutes later we had caught him and once again headed for home .
Today we spent most of our short day sailfishing in really large seas. The current was running at 2 knots or more into the wind and the wind came up over night, blowing at 20 knots plus, that made for some waves in the 6 io 8 ft range. Our group did fairly well, although our younger folks were not feeling the best but we were able to catch one sail out of a number that we hooked but didn't get.
Another strong group from the mid west as I really thought we would not be staying all day with this wind which was still producing fairly large waves. These guys proved me wrong and they stayed good the whole day long, catching everything we threw at them and then some. Kings, muttons and yellowtails along with some full grown bonitas kept everyone hopping.
Well the wind did come down some but it was still plenty rough, especially for our younger people today. Joe and Susan have fished me for many years, ever since their boat sank and the boat I was working on at the time happened by and we rescued them after they had spent 8 hours in the water. Great folks and we have really enjoyed our time fishing together over the years. Today was another mutton and yellowtail snapper day but we did catch possibly our last grouper of the year, a nice 10 pound black.
After doing a 3/4 day this morning, I took CP and his boys back out for a half day this afternoon. We tried the yellowtails but one thing lead to another and we ended catching five nice mutton snapper, ceros, mangroves and assorted other fish in the shallow water avoiding most of the really big waves. Tomorrow the weatherman promised us that the winds will be down to reasonable levels.... we'll see.
Didn't think we were going to get out today and once we did I didn't think we would stay but Terry and his group proved me wrong. It was rough but we caught 4 blackfin tuna over 25 lbs and missed a few more. We did see a sail but didn't connect and our group was really happy to be taking home fresh tuna for the barbie.