Saturday, March 29, 2008

Fishing the Florida Keys the Past Week

I have been booked all week and the wind has been blowing enough to make it uncomfortable if you head out to the reef or beyond. This is why I make the big bucks. It can be blowing over 20 knots and I can still find a place to fish and most often fish to bite.

That doesn't mean you catch fish from start to finish. You have to deal with a little slow bite until you get the right current. Wind against the current is tough fishing. That is the time to forget the chum and fish the bottom. The bite is slow but you do catch a few fish waiting for things to get right.

Another thing to remember is when the bite is slow the fish may be finicky. We lost more good fish this week by customers getting anxious and pulling baits out of the fish mouths. Many species, Mangroves in particular, will pick up a bait on a slow day and just hold it in their mouth. If you try to set the hook you just pull your bait off. A slow bite is a great time to set your rod in a rod holder. The rod holder has the patience of Job. It doesn't fiddle fart around trying to feel a bite and prematurely try to set the hook.

The guys that listened to me this week had nice fish dinners and some fun with a few big fish. The guys that didn't listen are probably talking bad about me. (Not really, they realized they had shots.) But that is the thing when fishing is slow, you take advantage of your shots and it is a good trip. You don't and it is not.

We did have a few days that it was not that rough and we could have kicked some fish butt. This is a great time for me to give y'all a couple of reminders:

1. If you think you are going to get seasick you will. Take regular Dramamine the night before and one in the morning to ward off Mal de Mer.

2. Upgrading to a larger boat is a good idea if you can. For Pips customers I recommend upgrading because of the bigger live wells and smoother ride. If you bring your own boat down you can't upgrade your boat. You can change your tactics. Between the bridges, lee side of the islands and lee side of flats, there is plenty of fishing.

This week in the smaller boats and bigger boats with greener crews, we caught keeper Red Grouper, Hogfish, Mangrove Snapper, Lane Snapper and Mutton Snapper plus a variety of jacks, sharks other critters. Not a chamber of commerce kinda catch, but my customers had pretty big smiles and a tasty dinner.

Marathon in the Florida Keys should be your next fishing vacation destination. Join us for charter fishing, fishing guide trips or our fishing 101 so you can fish on your own with better success.

Tight lines,

Capt. Dallas

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