Had Steve Williams and family that were on vacation in Jax. Steve was back, because he used to live here. And wanted a day of "sharkin" with his wife Jana and the boys.
It was day number three in a row for me. After the Greater Jax Kingfish tournament week, that I try and avoid charter fishing during. Just don't want the hassles of being out there while all that is going on.
So of course three days quickly piled up. Saturday, Sunday and Monday.
Saturday I had Tim and his nephew Quint. We fished the river at first heading straight down towards the Dames Point bridge in hopes of Trout, Drum, Croakers and maybe a few over sized Redbass.
Well, the very "non-flowing" tide was a pain because we didn't have much current. And as we tried everything from bottom fishing to float-rig fishing the guys just got ate alive by bait-stealers, along the structure. It was un-real. And at the same time we could barely get even a Croaker bite. I tried cut Croaker for large Reds and they sat untouched on the bottom.
Not good!! And just 5 days earlier I had big Trout and Reds on the same spot on my "solo" trip down there.
So we worked around the area, still nothing and ended up at the Lil Jetties, where the current was better, but only caught Seabass, a Whiting and a yellowmouth Trout, and one Nurse shark.....Yeah, the saltwater intrusion has pushed the Nurses up to the lil Jetties now. That was the first Nurse at the Lil Jetties in my 28 years of fishing there.
We then ended up at the big Jetties, where I caught a netfull of big Mullet and couldn't even give one away on the bottom along the rocks.
On Sunday, I took three guys who were working here in Jax. Up to Nassua Sound area for a bit of chum fishing. Targeted species was of course Tarpon. Since out of most of the Tarpon catches I've made with customers, they've mostly come from up in the slews between the bars at Nassua Sound. Being all sand, it's easy anchoring, shallow and when we do hook one up, there's no other boats in our way.
But again, no current and not much going on. The guys did hook up with a small Blacktip right off the bat, and a stingray before the tide gave out. Which forced us to go make some open water drifts as I worked my chum chopper and a bag of 30 pounds of Pogies. Numerous drifts had us hook up one really big shark, but it jumped throwing a giant splash of water and then it was gone.
On the rising tide it was a futile operation back in between the bars. Big dead Mullet out on the bottom, as I chummed with Pogies in my chopper brought schools of Ladyfish in that ate all our chum as Bluefish ate all our Mullet on the bottom.
The skies started to darken to the south of us, so we high-tailed back through the ocean and in the jetties and back to the boat ramp before any high winds or down pours. Which did cut loose as I got home, 5 minutes from the boat ramp.
So, Steve, Jana and the kids from Dallas were wanting a shark trip huh????? Well, I went north the day before, so I guess I'll go south today on Monday.
"If whatever your doing is wrong, the the opposite must be correct, huh?"
I worked really hard on our way to Nassau Sound on Sunday to get enough Pogies for chum while finding them out in 40 feet of water. And it did us no good at all.
There was no way I was gonna do that again on Monday. And from the looks of it, I wouldn't have too.
The shrimp boats were out in force. The chum hole, the S.E. Hole, all had shrimpers working the areas. So I went to the S.E. Hole, and the first boat we got behind instantly hooked us up on a double-header of smaller sharp-nosed Sharks.
After the morning "some what" coolness wore off, and the shrimp boats all anchored up. Everyone had a chance on a Shark while boating 9 of them.
So we headed back to the jetties and anchored up along the rocks to burn a few dead shrimp on the bottom. Catching a few Whiting, and yellowmouth Trout.
And I knew something was up as we were out behind the shrimp boats, because the Coasties buzzed "AND WAKED US", and every other boat out there. They were on "terrorist watch", I assumed.
Come to find out, a AirCraft Carrier popped up from the horizon, and every goverment pay check was out there in the ocean and river, on patrol.
Turned out to be a great day of catching, drag burning, packed with lots of action. Which only took 3 days to find.
But, I'm still wanting to switch and get in that river and fill that fish box full of Drum, Trout and big Croakers. Because nothing says success like the smell of a fish fry for me.
And remember, I have a Havalon "surgical scapel" Fillet knife now (http://www.havalon.com/) So filleting fish for me, is sooooo easy and enjoyable.
Best trip and most affordable, for light tackle river fishing aboard the Jettywolf, is two persons.