Friday, June 23, 2017

It Was Hot For A While

I did a rare "double" today, fishing this afternoon, again out of Big Talbot Island Park, meeting Chris Lanford, his son Rainer, and their friend William just after lunch. We made the long run to Pumpkin Hill and fished some now exposed oysters on an outgoing tide. Although all three anglers seemed to be getting bites, we had no takers. Probably Blue Crabs!

We jumped down to Broward Island and worked the bank jigs and minnows and here we picked  up a few Seatrout, one of which was a really nice keeper size. The good thing was the island was blocking a pretty strong wind that had picked up The bad thing was it was HOT! 

We fished it about as long as we could stand it then ran back to the Horsehead area...and boy was it windy! We fished some docks at Seymore's Pointe then ran around and fished some area's in Jackstaff, but had no more luck. Even though it was a slow day, it was still a great day to be out on the water here at Amelia Island, Florida.

Gettin Out Early

We wanted to get some fly fishing in today so we got out a little earlier than normal. I met David Ehrler and his son Jack down at the Big Talbot Island Park at 6:30 this morning and we made a run around to Pumpkin Hill in hopes that the nice Trout were still there. They were not. David getting good loops with his casts and presenting the fly perfectly but we didn't get any real bites on a topwater Gurgler or a Shrimp pattern. Young Jack was tossing a float rig with mud minnows and he wasnt' getting much action either.

We came back to the Horsehead area, poked the bow up into the grass at a half a dozen places but saw no Redfish tailing. After that, we stopped back by some docks at Seymore's Pointe and here the anglers "got on the board" when they landed some nice keeper sized Mangrove Snapper.

We later fished a couple of marsh run outs and both anglers tangled with and landed some hard fighting Jack Crevalle. And with that, we called it a day, another great one to be fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida. 

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Oh, My Shrimp Is Gone

That's the title of a new hit song soon to be released! You heard it hear! I fished this morning  Joe
Gasper, Adam, and Adam's daughters Eliza and Meagan, meeting them down at the Sawpit Creek boat ramp early, and we headed up the Nassau River and all the way around to Pumpkin Hill to fish the last hour of an incoming tide.

We set up to fish with float rigs and live shrimp, tossed up near some flooded marsh grass and we almost immediately began to get bites, and good ones too! Eliza put a hard fighting Jack Crevalle in the boat then followed that up with a keeper sized Seatrout-actually a 19.5" fish! Then everyone was catching fish. Meagan expertly landed another Jack, Adam added one, then he too caught a hungry Seatrout.

We worked the bank, getting bites constantly, then as we reached a point of grass we had an even bigger flurry of fish catch'n. Eliza caught a couple of keeper sized Trout, Adam and Joe added a cople of more, then Adam and Eliza had a "double" hookup. Eliza's turned out to be another big Trout while Adam'a was a 22" Slot Redfish.

We fished Seymore's and sparred with some "cute" Mangrove Snapper, hit Twin Creeks where Adam added another Trout, then wrapped up another great day of fishing over in the mouth of Jackstaff.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Fast Start and a Herd of Manatee

There was some concern that the tropical storm passing thru the Gulf may have adversely affected our chances of fishing today, but the forecast only called for overcast skies with a  slight chance of rain. So I met Jeremy Robertson,  his daughter Sissy, and their friend Johnny up at the north end boat ramp and we made a quick run over to the outside of Tiger Island to fish the very first of an outgoing tide with minnows and shrimp under float rigs.. It wasn't long before all three anglers were getting bites. Young Sissy
"knocked the skunk off" when she hooked  up and expertly landed a big keeper sized Flounder. Boy what a fish! Jeremy put a feisty Red in the boat and then a hungry Seatrout.

We worked our way around some sparse grass and as we eased by a big fish engulfed Johnny's large minnow and, FISH ON!  This was a nice fish and it fought "bigger" when it got back in the current. But Johnny kept the pressure on and soon landed a nice Slot sized Redfish. 

We crossed the river and began fishing another bank and immediately spotted a huge herd of Manatee. They were coming out of a creek with the tide and it seemed everywhere we looked there were Manatee. The anglers tried to concentrate on their fishing and they picked up a handful of Jack Crevalle in quick succession. They added another small Trout or two - and still we saw a few Manatee hanging out at the mouth of the creek.

Our next stop was further north west up Tiger where we fished a run out with jigs and minnows but we had no real bites, so we moved on and up to the Jolley River. We had been working the bank for just a few minutes when again, Johnny had a good hookup out the stern of the boat. He reeled it in handily and we netted a fat keeper sized Seatrout to round out the trio's Amelia Island Back Country Slam of Flounder, Redfish and Trout.  Although that stretch of bank looked good, we had no more real bites so we moved on.

When we reached Snook Creek we went back to the float rigs for a while but the oysters were beginning to show so we switched to jigs and picked up a couple of small Reds, Trout, Jack and a Ladyfish.  Our last stop was over at some docks in Bell River and Jeremy wrapped the catching up when he hooked another hungry Seatrout. And with that, we called it a day, another great one to be fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Burning Thru The Bait

The last two days we've really burned through the bait. There's a whole bunch of fish biting - and we caught a bunch of them today! I met Russ and Denise Kesel, their son Noah, and his friend Jayden up at the Dee Dee Bartels Park and boat ramp early this morning. We made  short run up and around to the outside of Tiger Island and set up to fish float rigs with a bait well of live shrimp and mud minnows. I thinks it was first cast and BOOM! Fish On! It was pulling hard and eventually made its way right between the trolling motor and bow of the boat and, Fish Off! That will wake you up!
From then on the four anglers were getting bites and landing some of them Denise and Russ put some hard fighting Jack Crevalle in the boat, while Denise added a high flying Ladyfish. Noah and Jayden added a couple of hungry Seatrout.

We ran around to the mouth of Jolley River and set up and fished a bank of flooded oysters. We had a good handful of feisty Redfish caught and then Noah had a good bite. This fish was staying down and had some weight and sure enough, after Noah had patiently fought him to the boat, we netted a big 19.5" Flounder, big enough
to garner 2nd place in the Anglers Mark 2017 Bragging Rights Tournament-Flounder Category (scroll down right side of this report for standings). 

We ran further up the Jolley, fished Snook Creek, and Denise hooked up and landed a feisty Bonnethead Shark. We bounced across the river, fished some now exposed oysters with jigs and caught more small Redfish. Our last stop was back at Tiger Island and after we had used all of our live bait and the anglers had
switched to artificials, Noah put one more keeper sized Flounder in the boat. And with that, we called it a day, another great one to be fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Wrapping Up With a Big Flounder

It was back to "work" today when I fished with Alan Reeves and his sons Jason and Jeff. I met them down at the Sawpit Creek boat ramp and we headed up the Nassau River to make our first stop at Twin Creeks. All there anglers started out tossing float rigs with live minnows on a tide that had been going out for a couple of hours. It only took a cast or two before Jeff had his float disappear and, FISH ON! He made quick work of getting in a nice keeper sized Seatrout.  His rod stayed hot when he also caught a hard
fighting Jack Crevalle. I switched Alan and Jason to jigs and minnows but we had no bites so we dropped back to the Spanish Drop area and fished a couple of now exposed oysters.

 Alan got hot, landing a big Ladyfish, another Jack Crevalle, and when he had another good bite by a fish that stayed up near the bank we knew he had a good Redfish. Alan played it patiently and
soon landed a Slot Sized Redfish. All three anglers put a handful of small but feisty Redfish in the boat.

We made a run up to some docks at Seymore's Pointe, fed some small Mangrover Snapper, then jumped over and fished some more oyster beds. Jason got on the board with a nice keeper sized Mangrove Snapper and Alan did battle with a huge Jack Crevalle - fun to catch but we rarely keep them to eat.

Our next stop was down at Pumpkin Hill where we again worked the oyster beds with jigs and minnows. Although we had a few nibbles, we had no real bites. We made one final stop down at Broward Island. Both Jeff and Jason caught a couple of more feisty Redfish then Jeff wrapped it up when he landed a big Flounder which made it another great day to be fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Down To The Last Minnow

I wrapped my week up fishing out of the south end, meeting Dale Bullard and his son-in-law Jacob at the Sawpit Creek boat ramp. We had a bait well of live shrimp and mud minnows ready to go when we hit our first stop along some oysters beds in the Nassau River. The tide still had a few hours to go out, but with the oysters showing, these two anglers were able to fish the bank pretty good. We'd been working the bank for about 15 minutes and I was beginning to wonder when Dale had a strong bite and, FISH ON!
Dale played it perfectly, with his drag singing and after a good battle landed  a nice Slot sized Redfish. And moments later, Jacob hooked up and again, FISH ON! Jacob worked it patiently to the boat and we landed another Slot Red.  Now that's the way to knock the skunk off.

We continued to fish the bank, picked up a couple of smaller fish, moved up to a marsh runout and caught a handful of small "rat"
Reds and an "almost legal" Black Drum. We ran up closer to Seymore's Pointe, eased  up to some more oysters and began to work them slowly. Both Dale and I had strong bites, drags that ripped and, FISH OFF! Ouch! We bounced over and fished some docks, had some nibbles, then BOOM! We had another good hookup and landed another Slot Redfish. After picking up a small Mangrove Snapper we ran down to Broward Island and boy did it look good!

The water looked like Coca Cola, the bait was running and I thought surely we'd get some fish. But nope, no real bites other than one small Flounder.  We came further north of Broward, worked a bank, and picked up one Stingray that I hoped was going to be a big Flounder. Our time was running out, along with the bait, so we decided to run back to where we started this morning and fish the first of an incoming tide.

And this did the trick. We only had a handful of shrimp and few minnows. When Dale hooked up with a big Jack Crevalle I thought we had a Red, but nope, just a Jack. Then Jacob hooked up. This big fish stayed up near the oysters - a Redfish! Jacob again played the big fish perfectly and soon landed another Slot Redfish. We were down to a couple of shrimp and a one minnow and Dale went with the minnow and it paid off! BOOM! BIG FISH ON!  This fish wasn't coming in for a while. But Dale was patient and kept the pressure on and eventually subdued the beast, a nice 25" Slot Redfish. Now that's the way to wrap up another great day of fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida!

Friday, June 16, 2017

Methodically Built a Very Nice Catch

For the second day in a row I fished out of the north end Dee Dee Bartels Park today. I met Tom Owensby, his son Kevin and his grandson Jake early and we headed over to Tiger Island to fish the last hour of an outgoing tide. The fish catching wasn't on fire but the three anglers got bites steadily, with Jake knocking the skunk off by putting a nice Slot Redfish in the boat.

We fished the pockets, caught a Mangrove Snapper, then Kevin landed a couple of nice keeper sized Flounder. We dropped back
and fished the stretch one more time and Jake came through again, landing a hard fighting feisty Redfish. When things slowed we ran around and fished the bank at Jolley just as the tide started back in.

Working the bank against a slight breeze, the anglers were getting bite regularly.  We added another keeper sized Flounder, thru a couple back, then we got into a nest of hungry "rat" Reds and had a good time plucking them out -for a while. We decided to run further up the river and around to the MOA and here we picked up a couple of Seatrout, one being a keeper that Jake landed.

Our last stop was across the river and sure enough, Tom found both a keeper sized Trout and a keeper sized Flounder. Jake reeled in a couple of Black "puppy" Drum, one of which was keeper size, then he added a keeper sized Mangrove Snapper. Kevin wrapped things up when he put one  more nice Slot sized Redfish in the boat. With that, we called it a day, another great one to be fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Catching Not Fishing

It seemed we had almost non-stop catching today! And it's the third day in a row that the fishing has been great here at Amelia Island, Florida. I met Matt Park, his friend Wren and his two sons Dylan and Joseph up at the Dee Dee Bartels Park where we launched and headed north and up to the Jolley River to make our first stop at an exposed oyster bank on the very last of an outgoing tide. All four anglers were tossing jigs and live shrimp to the exposed oysters and it wasn't long at all before the bite began.

Wren was first on the board, knocking the skunk off with a nice keeper sized Flounder. Then Joseph hooked up with something a big and an all out battle ensued. He played the big fish for a while then Matt took over for a while then Joseph jumped back in and together they landed a big 4' Bonnethead Shark, boy what a fight! Matt finished that spot with a Ladyfish catch and a small Redfish landed.
We ran further up the river and kept going all the way to the MOA
and this paid off. The group put a couple of more Bonnetheads in the boat and Matt found a honey hole for keeper sized Seatrout. Dylan had been making excellent casts and his perseverance paid off with a small Croaker catch then he two added to the keeper sized Trout catch. Wren added another shark and Joseph caught a hard fighting Jack Crevalle before we crossed over to fish some still exposed oysters on an incoming tide.

Again, it was "catching"  not fishing! Matt had a good bite and, FISH ON! This was a nice fish and when it rolled up near the bank we knew it was a good sized Redfish. He played it perfectly and patiently and soon landed a nice Slot Sized 24" Redfish. After catching a small but feisty Black "puppy" Drum, Wren had her big hookup. She too had a big fish and fought it perfectly. After a good battle she landed another 24" Redfish.

(Somewhere in there we had another Slot Red, and young Joseph put the only Black Tip shark in the boat - I lost track!)

We made one last stop at Snook Creek, added another Black Drum and a Jack Crevalle caught by Dylan, then we called it a day, another great one to be fishing here at Amelia Island.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Quick Amelia Island Slam

It's crazy how you can almost feel that the fishing's going to be good a particular day. Like yesterday, the conditions were perfect when I meet Patrick and Lindsey McStotts down at the south end boat ramp. We headed up the Nassau River with plans to make the long run to Broward Island but I just couldn't pass up a shoreline with exposed shell bank - the bait was moving and the fish were popping!

We pulled up and began to toss shrimp and minnows on jigs to the
bank. Patrick got things started off quick when he hooked up and landed a nice Slot sized Redfish, a great way to knock the skunk off the boat! He followed that up in short order with a hungry Flounder then a keeper sized Seatrout (all fish were released today) to garner a quick Amelia Island Back Country Slam! We worked that bank, tossed a cast net and picked up some more bait, then made that run down to Broward Island.

The duo caught another Flounder or two or three, a small (small) Redfish, then Lindsey had a strong bite and, FISH ON! This was a big fish that was ripping the line off of her spool. But she kept the pressure on and after a good fight, and despite the coaching, landed a nice 24.25" Redfish, boy what a fish! We worked down the bank for a while, then ran back to Pumpkin Hill, switching to float rigs.

Patrick added a feisty Redfish before we made one more stop back at Horsehead where he put 4-5 keeper sized Mangrove Snapper in the boat. With that, we called it a day, another great one to be fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida.