Another excellent day this time with Tom, Sharon, and their son Jake. They live down here for part of the year and then are back in Jersey for the other part. Tom had been following my blog and decided to get out for a 3/4 day with me. Conditions were favorable we just had a good cold front a couple days ago, and the wind laid down some yesterday and today was suppose to be very calm though there was a slight breeze but not bad at all. Good conditions for trying for some larger ‘winter time’ fish like the snook and drum. We don’t always knock ’em dead, but your chance to get a real quality fish are there on a day like today. We stopped at our first spot and it was quiet to start. Tide was starting in but not running too hard which was good. Soon we hooked up and Jake caught a black drum, and a bit later we got another one a little bigger. After that we had a good thump and something that screamed some line off! We chased after it and low and behold it was a nice permit. Nice surprise on a fairly cold morning. We landed him and it was all smiles! After that, jake had a good thump as well and I thought it might be another one. But this time it was a big snook probably a 15 lber! We got him too, it was Jake’s first snook, I told him he might be spoiled now. We missed one more bite there, and then the tide seemed to be rolling pretty hard so it was kind of over with. We tried a few spots where we had fished yesterday, but the tide was really ripping which was unexpected as yesterday it was a very weak tide almost all morning. We bounced around and didn’t do much, so we bailed and tried another area. We got into a sick redfish bite, catching double and triple headers for about 40 minutes! A few nice size fish mixed in too, and Sharon got a small snook as well. After that, I told the crew we might have a shot at catching a few more quality fish as the tide was nearing it’s end and as it slowed down we’d have another shot at that type of stuff. Everyone was game so we gave it a whirl. We were rewarded with several big black drum. Not monsters, but some good 12 to 15 lbers. Sharon had the right touch and caught 3 or 4, and the boys each got another one I believe to wrap up the morning. Just a fantastic day and nice way to wrap up the month as I’m taking the day off tomorrow. January is always a favorite month of mine as we get some of these great cold weather days. Not every day is like today, but if you hit the conditions right it can happen! I think I’m open on Friday if anyone wants to go, otherwise I’ll likely be going fishing myself for fun! Then it’s full steam ahead in February the next few months are already very busy, but give me a shout as I have a handful of days available in there.
1/28/19 – Day 2 with Steve and Jim! It was very cold, cloudy, and windy today but no rain. The boys wanted to stay and try to get some meat close to home. I was fine with avoiding the long run in the backcountry for a day! We hit the patches and it was very good, lots of porgies and a variety of snappers and other things. After a couple hours we went a bit more inshore to get out of the wind. We found a big school of redfish in a couple different places! This is unusual to see in Islamorada itself as these fish are usually further back in the everglades/gulf waters. We caught probably close to 40 in the two spots, and some nice size ones too up to a little over 20 inches. Very cool! After that we did go back around a few islands to get our limit of mangrove snapper. Had to look around a bit for some larger ones but we found them, and a few more redfish mixed in as well here too! All in all a great day for the boys and we didn’t have to go more than 10 miles from home. Back at it today it’s gonna be colder, might be a week for some large backcountry fish if conditions are right which it might be!
1/29/19 – Great day 2 with Jim and Gwen! We had nice conditions fairly calm and cold. Was hoping to find some stacked up snooks, but wasn’t the day for it. Jim did get a nice one to start however. We moved around and got on a good redfish and black drum bite after that. Also a few trout and sheepshead too. Gwen even caught a small tarpon but we didn’t get it up for pictures as it broke off while leadering it into the net. After that we checked some areas out in the gulf as it was flat calm now. Not too much on the wrecks we checked, but did get into a big school of bluefish for some action! We ran back inshore and got a few nice size black drum, a good size redfish for Gwen, and Jim got a very nice size snook too! Jim also hooked a tarpon that unfortunately got away. But overall just an awesome day with two of my favorite customers who have been fishing me a long time now! Back at it tomorrow looks like it will be nice and calm again hopefully some good conditions for us!
Well the weather man had it wrong today! It was suppose to be a washout 100% chance of rain, but we never really had a drop on us. Little breezy south wind but it did out in the backcountry, and some of the prettiest eater I’d seen in a while good to see. I had Jim and Steve two of my regulars this time of year. We caught our limit of snappers to start the day which was nice and easy. After that we hit the backcountry, the boys hadn’t been in the creeks before we usually fish the gulf or patches. Weird tide it never got very low some had to fish some more unusual spots. But once we got dialed in we had good fishing! Lots of redfish which had been the norm back there. As we got near the end of the tide we checked some other areas for snook. They were spread out but we had good fishing landing in the double digits. My kind of fishing where we had a couple bites off each stop and spent time working around in different areas, not seeing another boat back there. Saw a few Crocs and then headed on home. It was slick calm for the first half of the ride and the water was gorgeous, wish we had more time to stay! We will be back at it tomorrow looks like it’ll cool off a little and start windy but get nicer as the day goes on. We will see what the day brings!
Chilly, rainy, windy morning! Will wanted to give it a go though and so I was game. We had a half day scheduled which was perfect. We blasted through some drizzly rain that just didn’t end. We rarely get that kind of weather here in the Florida Keys, but it was one of those handful of days of the year. Unfortunately I couldn’t really get where I wanted to go with the tide, so we had to backtrack a little bit but got on some decent fish. Very nice size mangrove snappers which was great action and lucky for them we were releasing ’em because he didn’t need any table fare. We also got about a half dozen sheepshead or so and a few jack crevelles. We worked around an island fishing various edges and all of them held some fish. We tried a mud as well for some trout and ladyfish, but not much doing and it was hard to see where the active fish mud was with the rain and wind. We gave it a little extra time as it finally got nicer and stopped in a spot where I thought a few reds might be, and we caught more snappers but did get one redfish at least. The rain did stop the rest of the day seemingly at least and a few more boats made it out in the afternoon. Tomorrow looks like a similar forecast but hopefully we’ll be able to squeeze a half day in, then Monday at least the moisture clears out and it’ll be cooling down again for a few nights. No pictures as my phone and hands were all wet hard to get it to work when you can’t get dry!
Well good news I got my boat back up and running Wednesday afternoon. We had tons of action with Jim and Gwen! They’ve been fishing with me almost since I started guiding. We were gonna fish yesterday but I had today scheduled as a day off, and the forecast didn’t look great the day before do we opted to go today. Of course it ended up gorgeous yesterday, weather man is often wrong! But today was nice too and north wind which I prefer. First stop was slow, current was racing and tide was high. But Jim got a juvenile Goliath here. Next stop we didn’t get much early on, but once the tidal current slowed down it was game on! Lots of redfish, a few snook, and a few sheepshead! We tried a couple spots after that for something big, not much luck though we did get smaller Goliaths again on each of those spots! We tried another creek on the way home and got one more snook. That wrapped up our day, it was colder on the ride home than in the morning. Half day tomorrow then looks like the weather may get a little nasty but we will show up at the dock and see how it looks and try to get our day in Sunday.