Whatever you call'em.
They have never been the "end all" bait for me.
They are sissy baits. Yeah, I know getting some each time I go out is nothing but a shot in the dark.
So like fishing the Jetties and river. I never "NOT" have some plain ole dead shrimp. Well, when ever I plan on "trolling", I never not have a plain ole box of Cigar Minnows.
Ya gotta have PLAN B, always.
Today I spent way to long in the pursuit of Pogies on the beach with many others. My 8' Pogie net is really letting me down. I threw that SOB, 25 times to catch ONE stinkin' Pogie. The water was deep, the Pogies were huge, and they just swim out from under my net. (plan for a way heavier net next year!)
As time ticked away and my 3 customers looked as if they were about to fall asleep, things were so exciting. I said, ENOUGH!
We drove out to the S.E. Hole area (50+ feet of water) straight out from the old Sea Turtle Inn hotel, that's now The One Ocean hotel, and costs twice as much!
I dropped a "naked" cigar minnow rigs over the side, and began to troll at just idle speed with my 250 Zuki outboard. And the 2nd rod I put out our ONE Pogie, I had in the well.
10 minutes, maybe 15 passed and we reached 54' of water and the Ugly Stik Catfish rod, and Daiwa Saltist 20HC started to bend over and scream.
We were due! All that looking and castnet throwing. And when it boils down to it, "I'm just a cigar minnow troller, anyhow. It's all I used to do years ago, with great success."
This wasn't any Spanish Mackerel, or a Shark.
It was Big and Super fast.
I thought maybe a giant Jack Crevalle?
The battle went from Eric (dad) to his son, to his daughter, back to Eric, to his son, to his daughter, back to Eric, before we ever saw what it was. (probably a total of almost 30 minutes!!!)
When it finally came up it was a wonderful sight. A huge Kingfish. Not the usual "snakes" that I'm used too when trolling the inshore reefs. But a true "smoker".
In the 40 pound range as it crushed down my 30 pound Boga-Grip like a fall Bull Redbass from the river. The three of them just managed to get a good grip on it, for a good photo.
I'd have to measure my fish bags length. To get a idea. But it practically filled the whole bag, length wise. With maybe a few inches to spare.
We caught a small Shark afterwards that "sand bagged" the one live Pogie (yeah, it was still swimming), by eating it and we drug the shark to the boat as if it was a wet beach towel.
The heat poured on as the breeze started to fade off. And Eric's son battling a Cold wasn't really doing so well. So we headed in, and were back to the dock by noon.
"Time to make the donuts!"
And this was all that was left, after a good filleting.
Friday thru Sunday, then a short prep, then time for the July 4th Vacationers.
In my mind and personal fishing calendar. The July 4th Holiday marks the 1/2 way point thru the summer fishing season for me. And I'm glad. By now, I'm already dreaming of 40 degree mornings, with fog on the water, rods rigged up with Float-rigs and a livewell full of sprightly shrimp.......