Beat the winds
It was a windy couple of weeks, however anglers aboard the Reelin & Chillin managed to put fish on the line. Big reds close to thirty inches using select live shrimp or cut pinfish for bait really bent some rods. Spanish Mackerel, pompano, and mangrove snapper provided some great table fare. Blues, and ladyfish pulled some drag for some exciting light tackle action. A black tip shark on fifteen pound test line - what a blast.
Here are a few fish tails enjoyed aboard the Reelin & Chillin:
To big to keep - Fran Wapole, son Eric, and friend Michael Pastriech tackled a couple nice reds. Both Fran and Erice landed a red measuring in at twenty-nine inches. Great catch & release action considering they were using ten pound test line on a fish weighing around ten pounds. Michael didn't get a big red, however he did manage to catch a few keepers for dinner including mangrove snapper and black sea bass.
John Ditmeyer, and Dan Brown enjoyed some great light tackle action - big reds using light tackle with only ten pound test line. We picked up the reds first thing in the morning, two over the twenty-seven inch limit then one just at twenty-seven inches for the table. Also, a few mangrove snapper were picked up between reds. We then headed to a grassy area just south-east of the John Ringling bridge. We saw a couple pompano jump while drifting, but couldn't hook up. We did manage a few blues that were great fun on light tackle.
On a great family trip we caught several species making for a great day with the kids. We did fight chilly winds to twenty knots, however we managed to find a little break behind a few islands in Sarasota and Robert's Bays. John Pepe, wife-Tonia, son-Jackson (9), and daughter-Sydney (7) all had some great action. Here are the species we caught if I can remember them all - sheepshead, whiting, trout, pompano, lizard fish, mangrove snapper, pinfish, redfish, jack crevalle, pufferfish, and catfish.
Cheryl had the "Catch of the Day" with a three foot black tip shark caught on fifteen pound test line. Cheryl Carter, husband Orion, and friend Mark Obrien all had some great action starting offshore catching spanish mackerel and the shark. Then we moved inside finding a school of hungry bluefish, a couple ladyfish, and one more mackerel. Coming back to the dock this crew had the makings of a great fish fry with nine blues, four spanish mackerel, and a black tip shark - great day on the water for all.
Captain's Tip - Is it really a bad day
When I approached the boat launch at Ken Thompson Park the conditions would have turned many an angler around. A warm cut of coffee, couch, and a fishing show would have seemed like a much better way to spend the morning. Winds to twenty knots and a more than normal low tide seemed to be the makings of an uncomfortable day on the bay. However when your from Montana where the temperature is seventeen degrees it's not so bad, and the Pepe family decided to go for it (see above report). This crew was catch and release, however should they have kept there catch they could have had a nice family dinner. Several mangrove snapper, one sheepshead, one trout, and a pompano would have been plenty for the family. They did release all fish with the exception of the pompano - Jackson gave it to the Captain for dinner. Point is when the going gets tough the tough get going - just because it looks bad don't give up. There was almost no competition for a fishing hole, and using islands for cover we managed to stay fairly warm and still caught fish.
Tight Lines & Good Times, Capt. Terry Frankford
Reelin & Chillin Charters Inc.
Shelly with a nice King Mackerel
Cheryl with a Black Tip Shark
About The Author: Captain Terry Frankford
Company: Reelin & Chillin Charters Inc.
Area Reporting: Sarasota
Bio: Fishing experience in the Sarasota area for over thirty years - mostly salt water inshore and nearshore. Became a full time guide in November of 2003 after retiring from Verizon Communications as a Network Planning Engineer. U.S.C.G. licensed Master #1125021 – includes Commercial Assistance Towing. Completed Auxiliary boating Skills & Seamanship course. Certified in Senior Lifesaving, Advanced First Aid, CPR, and Open Water Scuba Diving.