Well, we got our first blast of real cold this week, but it will warm right back up. Fishing in the backcountry has been great! So good that it is hard to say were to begin. Let’s start in the Gulf and work our way east.
The Gulf west of Sprigger back have been producing lots of Spanish Mackerel, fast action and it is easy to catch 50- 60 fish in a trip. Mixed with the Macks are Bluefish, Jacks, large Lady Fish and Pompano. If youare fishing over holes or any structure you can count on Mangrove Snapper too. Nice Big Tripletails have been my main attraction though, the banks are holding lots of them and there are some real big fish out there, some over 10 lbs. They fight great with great tail walks out of the water. The real bonus is that they are delicious as well.
Moving with the schools of Mackerel are Black Tip Sharks. They are a lot of fun, a real sporty fish to catch. They attack the surface bait with ferocity and the strike is always violent, once hooked they make fast, sustained runs and will often jump.
Into the channels between the banks, I have been catching lots of nice Mangrove Snapper and Large Lemon Sharks. The Pompano are starting to show there as well and the trick to getting them is to have someone watch the wake of your boat as you run, the fish will skip out of the water when you run over a school. Just come back around with a Pompano jig tipped with shrimp.
The Party Boat fishing has been great on the Capt. Michael. I know all of this great fishing sound too good to be true but it is all really happening. The party boat is slamming big “flag” Yellowtail at night, Capt. Tony had two nights last week when conditions were perfect and he caught over 150 lbs of the big boys!
Capt. Dave has been finding some big large Muttons during the day and lots of Porgies and Lane Snapper. So really if you are not here you are in the wrong place.
Happy New Year fisherman,
I hope everyone had a great holiday season and a safe and fun New Years. The weather over the Christmas break couldn’t have been any better here in the Florida Keys. All the nice weather meant there were
a lot of fishermen on the water. Typically the sailfish season is in full swing, but with the lack of true cold fronts we haven’t had a good push of sailfish in our waters in a couple of weeks. But, I think that’s gonna change with the cold front we are having today. The weatherman says the wind is going to be 30 mph out of the north dropping the temperatures into the 50 s, making it the first real cold front of the year. Hopefully it will push a bunch of sailfish down the Florida coast.
With all the warm temperatures as of late the dolphin fishing remained strong throughout December and looks like it will continue into January surprisingly.
Yesterday we caught 20 Mahi up to 12 lbs. The white seagulls and terns have been helping us find feeding fish in the morning hours of the day. The best depth has been 150 to 300 ft of water. There has also been a good number of blackfin tuna along with some sailfish under the birds as well. So you need to keep every set of working birds honest. You just don’t know what they may be working over.
This time of year is also prime time for wahoo. Usually the calmer the weather the better it is to target these zebra fish. The trick to catching wahoo is to high speed troll or to use live cigar minnows, blue runners, or speedos. It is also important to find some clean blue Gulf Stream water, because these predator fish are a pelagic fish that like clean water to help them hunt.
Well I hope this gets you excited and gets you to go out and try your luck at catching some fish. I also want to thank Shannon Attales for having such a great barbeque for the Blessing of the Fleet on New Year’s Day.
Tight lines and Happy New Year!
Captain Brian Cone