Big Macks Bigger Bonita Huge Sharks Tampa Bay
The day started chasing Mackerel off St. Petersburg's beaches in 20' of 81 degree water. Upon arrival to my surprise there was no bait or birds not good signs. During the first 10 minutes we had one hit and I began to wonder if I made the right call. Well thankfully our rods started to bend and drags scream with steady action for 2 hours. Big Mackerel to 6 pounds made for lots of fun for all. The Mackerel run this fall is very impressive with so many large fish. Four pounds was common with 5-6 on every other cast!
Start by deploying a chum bag and toss live baits every 5 minutes to keep the Mackerel in the area. The rigging is simple 3' of 40-60 pounder leader finished with a 2/0 long shank hook. Bring plenty of gear as cutoffs are frequent. I must have tied 30 hooks! Wire leaders reduce cutoffs but I find the hook up ratio is not nearly as good.
The boys needed a break (worn out) so we made the 20 minute run south to chase Bonita I saw earlier when I was getting bait. It didn't take long and we found several schools of Bonita whipping the surface into a boiling frenzy! Casting Clark Silver spoons Chuck, Mike and I got a triple header and quickly handed off the rods to the boys. The boys and the drags were all screaming with fish crossing in front of around and under the boat. Jdub and Tre did an amazing job landing these 12 pound tuna.
Back on another school things went wild as Tre had a 6' Bull Shark eat his Bonita. I have a great video on Face book check it out at On The Mark Charters on Face book. Several minutes later another 6' shark went ballistic at the boat spraying Mike with water several times. All four fought the shark for 30 minutes getting it to the boat once which was a amazing feat on light tackle. I also posted video of the 2 boys teaming up on the rod fighting a fish heavier than them combined. By the way that Teamwork will end on Saturday as Jdub is a Gator fan while Tre is a LSU tiger fan and those Team play each other Saturday!
About The Author: Captain Steven Markovich
Company: On The mark Charters
Area Reporting: Tampa Bay
Bio: Capt. Steven Light tackle fishing at its finest. Tarpon, redfish, snook, cobia, trout and other exciting game fish. Day or Night join USCG licensed Capt. Steven of On The Mark charters for an incredible day on Tampa Bay. Beautiful scenery and wildlife, Dolphin, Manatees, Egrets and Ibis are just some of the wildlife you may see. Book a charter today!