Friday, September 14, 2007

9/14 - A World Tour

Had Billy and Gus on the boat today. We departed right at sun-up.
Had plans to do a little bottom fishing for a big Red, because that was a request of Gus'. Then do some Trout fishing.
Well, I went to go catch some Mullet for live or cut bait, and couldn't find any that weren't over net ruining oysters. So with an incoming tide all day, not even close to my favorite bottom fishing for Big Reds, kinda tide I opted to reverse the plan and go to where I've been catching the nice sized Trout, I caught on Monday and Tuesday.
ZIPPPPPPPPP...nothing but Mangrove Snappers, and baby Gag Grouper, and only one gill hooked small 14" Trout. COMPLETELY THE OPPOSITE OF TUESDAY!
So I decided what could be worse, Bait'n & Wait'n? So I went to a spot close made two casts with my net and about 100 4" mullet. So I headed to where you can actually have a chance at Reds versus Stingrays and anchored up. Problem is, I never fish the spot on a incoming tide, just a I said, "lets give it a try." It was all W-R-O-N-G. It just felt that way. The current, the way the boat laid, the whole thing felt weird. And since I have about as much patience for bottom fishing as a 2 year old, we picked up and left for the south side of the south jetty, on the incoming tide.

If some one told me, "You will not catch a Redbass out there or catch nothing, on the incoming tide backed up towards the rocks with 4" live Mullet, I would have told them they don't know what their talking about."
So we sat, and sat, and sat, and sat some more WAITING, the key ingredient to Bait & Wait!With two mullet firmly planted on the bottom, just outside the edge of the rocks off the tip.
And we ended up with....You guessed it, A STINGRAY! A Brown garbage can lid!
So we left. Then hit the rocks along the Navy Base point. The current sucked there, and had two marauders come and kill the Mullet. (small Jacks)

Bottom fishing. Now, mid-morning at least. Incoming tide = kiss of death, in my book. I couldn't stand it any more. So we left and we back float rig fishing with those expensive live shrimp I had.
And when I arrived at this spot the current acted like a falling tide and probably was by now although in the middle of the channel the tide was still coming in. That's the St. Johns for ya'.
Billy and Gus finally caught some Trout. All keepers and decent size fish too, along with a Mangrove snapper, two Jacks and a Ladyfish. By now it's after noon. And finally the tide turned and we have a fish in the box.

They used every single shrimp and the die off rate was pretty high. I had those west coast shrimp rather than the locals. I'll take locals instead, until I can't get them any more, that's for sure.
So they had 5 Trout now and the shrimp were gone. So we packed it in.

I had a GUT feeling that bottom fishing the incoming tide wasn't gonna be all that great, especially since I had to catch some bait first. I always catch my own Mullet. I never buy Mullet, and if I could go out in the river in Mayport right now and catch my own 10 dozen shrimp I would. It's just how I feel, about it. Or hell a cut Ladyfish would have worked if we could have caught 3 or 4 Early this morning. I should use Mangrove Snappers as cut bait. There's no lack of those bait stealing bastards around!
The fellas took their 12 fillets to Singletons Seafood and had a fresh fried Trout dinners made for them. Which is a nice way to unwind after a long hot and hard day on the St. Johns.

And BTW here's a REALITY check.
Last Mid October was the UUCA tournament ( under ground utilities contractors assoc.)The fishing was great. And that morning it was absolutely freezing cold as I rode down the river to pick up my entrants in the tourney. That same Tournament is Oct. 13th this year. My question to you is: "do you think it'll be really cold the morning on that date or even during that week? I'll bet NOT. That's only 30 days away. And I predict a very long hot summer well into October. Let's see, if I'm wrong or not. Believe me, I hope that by October 13th it's cold. Because we need a change. Hell, I need a change.
Tomorrow: NO BOTTOM FISHING....10 dozen live local shrimp. Fish hard, Float Hard, that's it!