I got a call yesterday from a young father of two that took his wife, two young daughters and another couple fishing for dolphin and managed to bore the hell out of them. So I showed him how to keep it simple, catch fish and keep the short attention span crew happy. There is a lot to be said for simple. Now the family fun stuff will never impress the big game crowd, but it has its place.
The family fun trip netted about 8 hogfish, a porgie or two, a few yellowtail, a trigger and a lot of releases including one huge boxfish. It was dinner and a show kinda thing which satisfied the admirals.
I think it was a cowfish, but I have never seen a three pound cowfish before so it might be one of the more exotic varieties. If they email me a photo I will put that up, but for now it was big and an usual. That photo is off of Wikipedia and you can follow the link to learn more about the photographer and the alleged Humpedback Boxfish.
The reason I post this is because offshore has been hero or zero. There have been some very impressive dolphin catches provided you find that magic trip saving floater. There has also been some impressive sailfish bites, but nothing I can report on that someone might actually be able to match. However, the winds are laying down a bit so boats can cover more ground which cuts down on the luck factor. Family dolphin trips with small kids can be a disaster if you actually want your significant other and offspring to enjoy the trip enough to do it again. So if you plan a family dolphin trip I recommend having some knocker rigs and frozen shrimp as a backup bait should the crew start looking mutinous.
Back up plans are as or more important than plan A. If you have a big boat with an air conditioned cabin, full bar and galley plus a reasonable dvd library for the appropriate age groups, plans B through Z are not such a big deal. On a center console though, catching something is pretty much mandatory. While dropping balleyhoo chunks or squid for last minute trip savers normally works, shrimp is a sharper tool to have around for the short attention span set down here in the Keys.
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.