During a graduate fishing class, this crew from Great Britain has been fishing the Keys as long as I have, we caught a little bit of everything. Pictured are Cero Mackerel, a fidgety Yellowtail Snapper, Lane Snapper and I managed to miss a large Porgy plus a lot of others. Today was supposed to be a Yellowtail trip but thanks to too pretty weather and a hungry Porpoise that kept stealing fish, it turned in to a mixed bag kind of day.
Pretty weather is one of those fishing jinxes you really don't mind all that much. Flat calm seas and clear water make catching a bit more difficult. In order to get the yellowtail dinner for the porpoise we had to go down to size #8 bait hooks. That is a good bit smaller than the typical size #4 to #2 most use, but you gots to do what you gots to do sometimes. After the porpoise started taking our fish on purpose we headed to deeper water for the good size lanes and nice but not pictured porgies.
We had several opportunities to be big fish heroes, but my crew had a problem with hook up interuptous. This is one of those weird afflictions often associated with braided line and light terminal tackle. The smaller hooks required to get the fish to bite require a light drag. So while we could have had more fish, we still had a good day.
This gives me another chance to speak to the braid fans. Braid is not a universal line. It has its advantages but clear water reff fishing is not one of them. A good 15# to 20# clear mono spinning outfit should be in any Keys angler's rod collection. With fresh, clean, clear mono, most of the time you don't even need flourocarbon leader. That makes life so much simpler, no leader just tie on a fresh hook of the proper size and add bait. It don't get no simpler than that.
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.