Sunday, April 13, 2014

Trout Attack

I had the pleasure of fishing again with Mike Kaiser and his daughter Kathryn today who drove up from the Jacksonville area this morning.  We had timed the trip to coincide with the high and outgoing tide.  Our first run was all the way up to the Jolley River and this paid off.  The two anglers hadn't been fishing but a few minutes when they began to hookup with Seatrout!  Both anglers put keeper sized fish in the boat although all fish were put back to be caught another day.  When Kathryn's rod bent over and drag began to rip out I knew she had a nice fish, FISH ON!  She played the fish patiently and we eventually netted a nice fat 19.5" Seatrout!  This fish move her into 3rd place in the Anglers Mark 2014 Bragging Rights Tournament-Trout Category! The two also put a good handful of feisty Redfish in the boat.  We fished Snook Creek for a while then ran back to Jolley Bank and although the bite wasn't as good as earlier, they picked up a couple of Trout and a Redfish.  Our last stop was at Tiger Island.  Both Mike and Kathryn were fishing hard and patiently and it paid off.  Every once in a while they'd land a Redfish or a Seatrout, then both of them put Sheepshead in the boat to round out their Amelia Island Backcountry Slam!  As the tide began to hit bottom the bite slowed so we called it a day, another great one to be out on Amelia Island waters!

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Trout on the Fly

You just can't beat the kind of weather we're having this week!  I had met Steve Cheis down at the Atlantic Seafood dock this morning under clear skies and with just a slight breeze - the river was like a pond!  We headed up to the outside of Tiger Island and Steve tossed top water Gurgler with an 8w TFO Fly Rod.  He was making some excellent casts to the edge of the marsh grass and even though we were seeing some bait movement, he had no takers.  We then made a run up to Jolley River, did the same at one marsh run out with no luck then eased into a large creek, switching to a shrimp pattern on an intermediate line.  Steve
was tossing up current and slowly stripping the fly back and this did the trick!  He picked up a beautiful keeper sized Seatrout that put up a valiant fight for the fly rod.  We photographed and released this fish as we did with all others caught today.  We moved back to the mouth of Jolley, fishing deeper water, and switched to a float rig and live shrimp.  Steve picked up a few more Trout,  a few feisty Redfish, then a fish that bent his rod and made the drag sing!  This big fish put up a fight but Steve was up to the task and patiently worked the fish to the net, landing a nice 25" Slot Redfish!  We then made a stop behind Tiger Island, fishing with jigs and shrimp on the bottom.  Steve landed a good handful of Seatrout, a couple of Sheepshead to round out his Amelia Island Back Country Slam, and also had a couple of more feisty Redfish.  After hitting a few more oyster beds at dead low tide, we headed in, counting it as another great day to be out on Amelia Island waters!

Friday, April 11, 2014

The Fish Are Moving Out

Boy what a beautiful day we had today! Mark DePrimo and I fished early, leaving the dock at 7:30am and heading up to fish the outside of Tiger Island.  Mark was tossing a popping bug with an 8w fly rod and making good casts up to the marsh grass over flooded oysters.  But we had no takers so we moved around, tried it again, and still had no takers.  We made a stop behing Tiger Island, switched to shrimp on a jig, and soon Mark was hauling in a nice keeper sized Sheepshead- his first- and after pictures we released him.  Shortly after, Mark hooked up deep and landed a neat Weakfish!  But the fish weren't biting as much as weeks past so we made a run to the Jolley River to fish the oyster bars and here things heated it up.  Mark  was now tossing a float rig with live shrimp and had a good battle with an 18" Slot Redfish.  He then caught a Seatrout to round out his Amelia Island Back Country "Grand" Slam of Sheepshead, Weakfish, Redfish and Seatrout!  We worked the bank and Mark landed a few more Redfish and a few more Seatrout. We couldn't have ordered up a better day - another great one fishing Amelia Island waters!

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Fishing with Lobsters

The local bait shop got a fresh batch of live local shrimp and the seemed like the size of lobsters!  I normally like a medium size shrimp for fishing with jigs but when a big one is all you have, then you go with it!  I met Wes Matheney at the Atlantic Seafood dock this morning under cloudless skies and only a slight breeze. I've fished with Wes a couple of times before and he and I both were expecting a good fishing trip.  We headed north to fish Tiger Island as the tide dropped and we weren't disappointed.  The first couple of casts produced Trout with one or two in the keeper sized range - a great way to start a trip!  We worked
the bank and picked up a Trout here and there then we had a strange bite and run.  This fish seemed to hang to the bottom and I at first thought "Flounder". But Wes patiently worked the fish up and we soon saw it was a big Sheepshead!  After landing it, we measured it to see that it was 20.25", putting Wes into 3rd place in the Anglers Mark 2014 Bragging Rights Tournament!  Scroll down right side of this report for standings. We eventually made a run up to Jolley River to fish the exposed oyster banks and picked up a couple of Trout, one on a jig and one on float rig.  Wes was working the float rig up near the oysters and after seeing some activity, made a pin point cast to the spot.  Shortly after his float disappeared and, FISH ON!  And what a battle it was!  The big fish rolled up near the oysters, trying to dislodge the hook then made a couple of deep runs.  Then it headed back into the current taking Wes to the stern where it again made a few deep runs.  But Wes was patient and eventually wore the big Redfish out.  We netted the beast, measured it to 26.75" - a "Tournament Red", then released it.  Boy what a fish!  After hitting the MOA Spot and picking up one more keeper sized Trout, we headed in, counting it as another great day to be out on Amelia Island waters!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Big Trout Top The Board

The storm passed through yesterday leaving today full of sunshine.  I had met Pete and Jane Woodward down at the City marina to fish the Amelia Island back waters celebrating their 25th wedding anniversary.  There was somewhat of a westerly breeze so I figured we could get in a protected area and at least get in some fish catching early.  We headed up to Lanceford Creek to get behind the land mass and it was like fishing on a still lake.  It wasn't long before the anglers started catching fish, landing Seatrout with two being of keeper size and a good handful of feisty Redfish.  They put a few Sheepshead in the boat, with two being of keeper size, and noted their Amelia Island Back Country Slam of Seatrout, Redfish and Sheepshead.  But they also landed a small Black "puppy" Drum to make it a Grand Slam!  We eventually made a run to Tiger Island and although we were in the wind, we almost immediatley began to pick up fish.  They again had feisty Redfish, hungry Seatrout and Sheepshead.  Then Pete had a strong hookup and after a good battle, landed the biggest Seatrout of the year, a 21" fat beauty!  Jane wasn't going to be outdone and caught a 18" Black Drum and as we were about to wrap up, she too had a strong hookup, down deep on the bottom.  She worked the fish patiently and after  good battle landed THE biggest Seatrout of the year, a 23" hoss!  These two Trout put Jane and Pete in first and 2nd place of  the Anglers Mark 2014 Bragging Rights Tournament-Seatrout Category!  Scroll down the right side of this report for standings.  And with that, we called it a day!  Another great one to be out on Amelia Island waters!

Monday, April 7, 2014

Everyone Catches Fish

I fished this morning with Michael Noxon and his two sons Max and Jack.  We met down at the Sawpit Creek boat ramp at 7:30am and headed up to the Horsehead area to fish a falling tide with jigs and shrimp.  The first stretch of flooded oysters that we fished produced one fat Seatrout that Michael landed, the second spot produced none, so we headed over to Broward Island knowing that the logs would be exposed.  We weren't there long before we began to get hookups.  Young Jack did an excellent job reeling in a feisty Redfish to start things off then all three anglers began to catch fish.  We had a good handful of feisty Redfish and hungry Seatrout, then Michael landed a Sheepshead to get their Amelia Island Back Country Slam.  Max hooked up with a fish that ripped drag out and after a good battle landed a nice 19" Slot Redfish!  Michael reeled in a keeper sized Sheepshead and Jack put another feisty Redfish in the boat.  Michael made it a "Grand Slam" by outsmarting a Flounder, the 3rd caught in the last week.  Our last stop was back at Seymore's Pointe and Jack wrapped things up by catching a Seatrout on a float rig.  With that, we called it a day, another great one to be out on Amelia Island waters!

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Trout Are Getting Bigger

I fished this afternoon with Paul Ricciardelli and his two sons Mike and Mathew, with the trip being set up by Paul's wife Elizabeth.  We headed out but the wind had picked up from this morning and made the first stop tough to fish our float rigs and live shrimp.  After no bites we moved around to behind Tiger Island and here things heated up.  Young Mike started things off right, hooking up with a big fish, FISH ON!  He worked it patiently and after the fish had taken him from bow to stern, landed a nice Slot Redfish measuring 22"!  The other anglers got in on the action as Paul landed a few Seatrout, one after the other and Mathew found some feisty Redfish to bring to the boat.  We moved up and down the island and as Mike fished deep he hooked up with bigger Trout, this one measuring 18.5" which puts him in first place in the Anglers Mark 2014 Bragging Rights Tournament-Trout Category!   They caught more Trout, a Black Drum, and a Sheepshead to also record an Amelia Island Back Country "grand slam".  We hit a couple of more spots but the NE wind eventually blew us off the water.  However, we counted it as another great day to be out on Amelia Island waters!

Big Red to Start the Day

Jorge Noguera set up a last minute fishing trip here at Amelia Island while visiting his father, Jorge Sr. so we meet at the Atlantic Seafood dock this morning under cloudy skies but with almost no wind.  We headed up Lanceford Creek to fish some dock pilings and after only a few casts Jorge hooked up with a Big fish, FISH ON!  He played the big fish perfectly and patiently and after an extended battle that went around the boat a couple of times, landed a nice Slot Redfish measuring 25.5"!  What a way to start the day.  We picked up a couple of Seatrout, some smaller Reds, and then two hard pulling 19" Black "puppy" Drum.  When the bite slowed we made a run around to Tiger Island and here Jorge Sr. got on the board with a beautiful copper colored 22" Slot Red.  The duo added another keeper sized Drum and a 16" keeper sized Sheepshead in addition to a good handful of smaller Reds, Seatrout and Sheepshead.  It was a great day to be out on Amelia Island waters fishing with a father and son fishing team!

Saturday, April 5, 2014

The Best Filet Knife Ever

I've gone through a number of filet knives over the last 8 years that I've been guiding with some of them being fairly expensive knives.  But after a few fishing trips and fish cleaning I've found that the edge of the blades begin to pit and can't be sharpened without putting them on a grinder.  However, my wife and I purchased a 9" filet knife from the Hammer Stahl booth during the Shrimp Festival last May and it's turned out to be an excellent knife.  I keep a sharpening steel in my captains bag and will swipe the knife a few times before I clean fish and it's as sharp as the day I purchased it.  In addition to being a sharp knife, it looks "sharp" too!
Now, if you enter a special code, you can get 15% off of any product purchased from Hammer Stahl.  Visit and enter the code "theanglersmark" at checkout.

Friday, April 4, 2014

First Fish and First Redfish

Blake and Karin Flood treated their daughters to their first fishing trip this afternoon, meeting me down at the Big Talbot Island Park boat ramp.  The wind had picked up and I was a little apprehensive about it but these anglers were game!  We made a run up the Amelia River and fished a few creek run outs in Jackstaff.  Young Claire got the "skunk off the boat" by landing a hungry Bluefish, then Karin and Blake followed it up with Seatrout catches.  We ran around to Nassau River to fish the Twin Creeks but had no bites, got out of the wind at Seymore's Pointe for a while, then headed over to Broward Island after the tide had gotten down.  Here things immediately picked up.  Young Abigail landed her first fish caught ever - a feisty Redfish and then Karin had a strong bite.  Her rod bent over and the drag ripped out, FISH ON!  She fought the fish patiently and after a good battle, landed a big 25.75" Slot Sized Redfish, her first Redfish ever!  The anglers continued to fish and picked up more Seatrout and Redfish with Blake getting both and then adding the second Flounder of the year, to round out his personal Amelia Island Back Country Slam.  Everyone caught fish and as we headed in, the wind had subsided, and we counted it as another great day to be out on Amelia Island waters!