Wow, was Monday the pick of the week. Even though the forecast was for "wind", the little we had was perfection. And the air temp was so nice and cool. I was loving it. As was my crew the Brandt family. Don lives around the corner from me, while his folks come down from NY at least 4 times a year. They are long-time customers that I so much enjoy having aboard the Jettywolf, that I look forward to them calling me. We always have such a good time. It helps that they are, "nose to the grind stone" anglers. Willing to fish hard, all day long.
So we departed at 8am after the flood tide. My plan was to go catch some Reds off the stern in the current, while they fished shrimp on the bottom for "stringer fish" (IE: Whiting, Croakers, Spots, Yellowmouth, Sand Trout, Seabass.)
But they did better than that!
Right off the bat, Don's mom scores a nice Sheepshead in 35 foot of water on a piece of shrimp. And as planned they wacked the Croakers real good too. While I took the smallest ones and put them in the livewell for big Redbass bait...."gotta love free bait, that are a blast to catch."
So I flung out a live Croaker behind the boat pinned to a 7/0 circle hook on the heavier rods, as the crew continued catching one fish after another. In hopes for a big bow in the rod and a large Redbass. And it did happen! But whatever it was stole the live Croaker.
Some of the Croakers are getting pretty big. Good enough for some fillets.
Then, "BIG FISH BILL", Don's dad. While stealthfully fishing up on the bow of the boat. Stuck a big fish on the light tackle. It smoked drag, ran slack back towards the boat, ran under the boat, and then ran out off the side of the boat. Bill was smiling! It was an oversized Redbass that ate a small dead shrimp intended for more Croakers........."or was it??"
At 28-1/2 inches long it wasn't a keeper. But Bill didn't care. It was a great fight. In the photo Bill's holding his fish, and the tiny piece of shrimp it ate. "yep, elephants eat peanuts too, Bill..."
It was steady as it comes. Fish after fish. Croakers, Spots, Pigfish galore...but ya never know what's gonna eat that dead shrimp bouncing on the bottom. A-C-T-I-O-N, that's what I like. Be it with customers or while I'm out by myself doing R&D. Some of the Croakers were big enough to drop in the fish box, along with filletable Spots also. Good makings for a fish fry. Small, skinless, boneless fillets, perfect for some Zaterains fish fry mix, and Peanut oil. I knew we'd have plenty of stringer fish, so we kept all the filletables.
As the tide fell the action on spot #1 faded some we made a move. "let it be known...that Spot #1 was only 2 miles from the dock. And we sat and caught fish steady for hours. That's my motto. NO LONG BOAT RIDES!"
Spot #2, was just an area I wanted to check out. It was deep on the channel edge, and the current was extreme. But Bill pulls pup Drum out of the spot while fishing a 6 ounce sinker on my light bottom rods.
Lunches aboard the Jettywolf, are always great with the Brandts. Really good sandwiches, cheese and crackers, and various fruits. So since the current was blazing. It was time for a lunch break. Then, I slid the anchor up into shallower water along a hard bottom area in 26 feet.
We continued fishing just plain ole dead shrimp on the light rods, while I threw a butterflied Croaker out behind the boat. Whiting, Yellowmouth Trout, Sand Trout, some weird species, and more keeper Spots were biting when the stern rod bowed over with authority. Don's mom grabbed it.......The battle was on!
Thank goodness, this fish hit the beefier tackle. Because it made a long, long run against the heavy drag of my B-197 twin-drag Accurate reel and 6' Ugly Stik charter rod.
Another over-sized Redbass in the 36 inch catagory. "This fish was full of spit & vinegar!" Healthy, no doubt. But Don's momma handled it as she always does, like an Pro.
We boxed some more big Croakers, some Whiting and sizeable Spots. And feed plenty of Pigfish. And it was time to move on. So we hit the first spot of the morning again, because the tide would be perfect again.
And no sooner were we on the spot, Bill was up on the bow again with his rod bowed over and drag peeling.
Don, was in the stern with me and Bill came back with his fish and gave it to Don. "Ohhh, this will something by the time Dad gets home.....having to catch a Red for his son", Don said.
But either way. Don put a beautiful 32 incher into the net after a light tackle battle in 35 foot of water. And again, another big Red on a small piece of dead shrimp!
We finished up every single piece of shrimp on the boat. The tide went slack, and that was our signal to head to the dock. I cleaned all the fish in the box, and there was some mighty fine fish fry fillets, afterwards.
It was a great day, weather-wise and fishing-wise. And Bill said before they headed off, "See ya in May Capt Dave...." I replied, "I'll be looking forward to it, Bill."