Monday, July 6, 2015

Red Dawn

I hope everyone had a great 4th of July weekend! After the long weekend, I fished today with Brian and Patti Harnish and their daughter Megan, leaving out of the City marina early this morning and heading over to Eagans Creek to fish the first of an incoming tide. We had just gone over the "demo" cast, tossing a mud minnow on a jig up to some dock pilings when , BOOM, FISH ON! This fish was a nice fish and Brian played it perfectly, landing a nice Slot Redfish to start the day! All three anglers got there rods going and within a short while, they were catching more Redfish. Brian and Patti reeled in a couple then Brian had a really strong bite and boy this fish was BIG! He worked it patiently out from the dock pilings, kept the pressure on, fished it from port to starboard, from bow to stern and eventually landed a "tournament" sized 26" Redfish.  Then Megan followed that up with a nice 23" big Red of her own. We picked up a few more fish then ran around to fish the logs of Tiger Island. There were a couple of boats already there so we skirted them, picking a few spots to fish, and just before we left Brian put another Slot Red in the boat. We made the run up to Jolley River, fished a now flooded oyster bank, Patti found a hungry Seatrout and a feisty Redfish, then we called it a day, another great one to be fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Trout Fest

I had the pleasure of fishing with Roy Carter and Rodney Mills today, meeting down at the Atlantic Seafood dock with plans to run up Bell River a short ways and fish a flooded oyster bank on a high and still coming in tide. The two anglers mixing it up with live shrimp and mud minnows and it didn't seem to matter as both put a couple of small but hungry Seatrout in the boat. We ran through Tiger Basin and to the outside of Tiger and eased along a flooded grass line and again found Seatrout to catch. There was ton's of bait in the water and bigger fish were popping everywhere but we couldn't get them to bite. Our next stop was up in Jolley River and we had only been fishing for a short time when Roy's float got sucked under and, FISH ON! He played the fish patiently as it dug into the marsh grass, slowly working it out into deeper water, then taking his time to bring it to the net, a nice 22" Slot Redfish! We worked that bank thoroughly then made one last stop back at the mouth of Jolley, picking up another Trout or two then calling it a day , another great one to be fishing Amelia Island waters!

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Big Trout and Bigger Shark

I fished this morning with Steve Moore and his friends and workmates Brent and Eston, meeting them down at the City boat ramp this morning. We ran north and made our first stop outside of Tiger Island, tossing live shrimp under floats to some flooded oysters on the last of an incoming tide. Right off, the anglers were getting bites but they were small "baitstealers". But they kept at it and picked up a handful of small but hungry Seatrout. We ran through Tiger and over to Bell and again set up off some flooded
oysters. After picking up one or two small Trout Brent had a different kind of bite which he hooked up and landed - a nice keeper sized Flounder. He went back to the same area and in a short while had a much stronger bite. This was the biggest fish we'd had all day and Brent played it perfectly and soon landed a 21.5" Seatrout and boy was it fat! This fish moved Brent into 3rd place in the Anglers Mark 2015 Bragging Rights Tournament-Trout Category (scroll down right side of this report for standings)  We made a pit stop to pick up more live shrimp then headed up to the Jolley River and fished a grass line. It took a while but they found a couple of multi-spotted Redfish (giving them and Amelia Island Back Country Slam) and a trout or two. When Eston switched to a jig and shrimp it wasn't long before his rod bent over and the drag began to sing, FISH ON! He played the big fish patiently and a after a long battle landed a 3'+ Bonnethead Shark. We moved back down the river, fished some oysters that were now exposed, picked up another Redfish, then Brent did battle with another large Bonnethead. He also put a high flying Ladyfish in the boat and Steve added a keeper sized Whiting. After fishing one more bank in the Jolley, we ran around to fish some docks at Bell River. Although the sun was up and the bite had died, Steve persevered and picked up a hard fighting Black "puppy" Drum to round out a "Grande" Slam and wrap up another great day of fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

High Tide Redfish

We had a nice breezy morning today, fishing with Jim and Tawee Langston, starting our day fishing the last hour or so of an incoming tide. We had met at the Atlantic Seafood dock and headed up to fish outside of Tiger Island with float rigs baited with live shrimp and mud minnows. The two anglers had bites right off and it didn't take long for them to begin to pick up hungry Seatrout. There wasn't a whole lot of size to them but that made it challenging to hook them up and I'd say it was an even "draw" with Jim and Tawee landing a handful and the Trout stealing a good number of baits! We ran
around and up into the Jolley River and found a bank to fish with oysters flooded underneath. Jim and Tawee were making great presentations, getting a few bites, then it paid off when Tawee had a strong hookup, FISH ON! She played the fish patiently as it made some strong runs, most of them up near the grass and over the oysters, but Tawee kept the pressure on and soon landed a nice 22" Slot sized Redfish. Now that's a nice fish! Then Jim got in on the action and landed two of his own feisty Redfish, and then Tawee put another Slot Red in the boat. We worked the length of the bank then made one final run around to Bell River and fished a dock, switching to jigs and shrimp. Jim made it pay off when he had a strong bite. This fish was pulling hard and staying deep but Jim applied the pressure and worked the fish out from the dock and landed another Slot Redfish, a great way to wrap up another day of fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida.

Monday, June 29, 2015

They Were Huge

We had overcast skies all morning long but it made for some very comfortable fishing. I had met Smith Marks, his dad Tim and his brother-in-law Jonathan down at the City marina and we made a run north and into the Jolley River to fish the very first of an outgoing tide. We set up outside a marsh run out and got a few bites on live shrimp under floats, but no real takers. We then eased along the flooded marsh grass as the anglers tossed their shrimp and mud minnows to the edge. Jonathan "knocked the skunk off" when he hooked up and battled successfully a nice 4' Bonnethead Shark. Then Smith got in on the action when he tangled with a Ladyfish, and BOOM! While he was battling his high flying fish Tim had a strong hookup. This fish was pulling hard but not like the Shark and we thought for sure he had a nice Redfish. After patiently fighting the fish, Tim landed a nice 22" Slot Redfish. Shortly after that Jonathan put another Red in the boat and Smith landed another of the Lady's. We fished at the mouth of a large creek, had a few bites, then eased up into the creek and again, a few bites, but no takers. We ran back to the mouth of Jolley, fished the "bank" and before we left the anglers caught a hungry Seatrout. We ran back to the dock and dropped Tim off and picked up Smith and Jonathan's wives - Kristin and Katie and then came back to Tiger to fish the logs. There wasn't a whole lot of action here but Katie had a couple of hookups, one being a nice Trout (actually huge) that she had to the boat, but it threw the hook. And on another occasion she hooked up with what had to have been a huge fish, but it too tossed the hook. And with that, we called it a day, another great one to be fishing Amelia Island waters.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Texas Size Mangroves

I fished today with Bob Hampton and his son Jason and his wife Cally. They also had young angler Myles, Bob's grandson and nephew to Jason and Cally. We met down at the Sawpit Creek boat ramp, headed up the Amelia River and into Jackstaff to fish the exposed oysters on a tide that had been going out for about 2 hours. Tossing jigs and shrimp, the anglers worked the bank and it wasn't long before Myles announced "Fish On" and he soon landed a nice keeper sized Flounder to "knock the skunk off" the boat. We continued to fish the bank and in a short while Cally had her first
fish, another keeper sized Flounder. We crossed over and fished a submerged sandbar and the anglers picked up a couple of Seatrout. First Jason, then Bob. Then a school of small shark must have come through and Cally landed one then Jason landed a couple. Jason also tangles with a high flying Ladyfish. We ran around to Nassau River and fished some docks and here things heated up.  Myles, Jason and Cally all three had hookups and all three threw the hooks! But they were not going to be denied. Myles put a nice Mangrove Snapper in the boat then Cally had a real strong hookup and, FISH ON! She battled the big fish valiantly  and despite the coaching, landed a nice feisty Redfish! Then Jason put another one in the boat and then another. Bob found a hard fighting Jack Crevalle.They had numerous bites but no real takers so we hit Bubblegum Reef briefly but had no bites. Our last stop was back at some docks and here they found the Mangroves Again. Jason put one in the boat then Bob wrapped it up with a "Texas Sized" Mangrove Snapper. It was another great day to be fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida!

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Two Slots and a Slam

I fished with Joe Gasper today, and he brought along his friend Adam and Adam's daughers Eliza and Megan. We met at the Fernandina Beach Harbor Marina and made our longest run out to Bell River to fish some docks with just a couple of hours left in an outgoing tide. The girls set up on the back of the boat and began tossing live shrimp on jigs. It took a few casts but then Megan had a strong hookup. She figured out how to lift the rod and reel down on this nice fish and after a good battle, landed a nice 20" Slot Redfish. They all were getting bites then Adam put a nice Red in the boat then Megan followed that up with another Slot Red!  Adam had a bite that was a little different but he set the hook and landed a hungry Flounder. We made the run around to the Jolley River, stopped at the MOA spot and sparred with some Croaker, caught a few and then Eliza had a really strong hookup and, FISH ON!  The big fish took off towards the stern of the boat and, FISH OFF! It snapped the leader! After fishing for a while,  moved on down to the mouth of Jolley and again, the Croaker were present but Joe found a nice Seatrout to help claim an Amelia Island Back Country Slam of Redfish, Flounder and Seatrout. Our last stop was behind Tiger Island and here Eliza's perseverance paid off when she landed a very nice Redfish on a jig and shrimp. With that, we called it a day, another great one to be fishing Amelia Island waters.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Good Summer Variety

I had the  pleasure of fishing again with Randy Hilyard and his two sons Ryan and Justin, fishing out of the City marina this morning with somewhat overcast skies and a slight breeze to make it very comfortable. We made our first stop behind Tiger Island as the tide reached its bottom and fished with jigs and live shrimp. Randy started things off fairly quickly when he landed a hard fighting Back "puppy" Drum. Then Ryan picked up a Seatrout and Justin
followed that up with a Flounder. We made the run up to Jolley Bank, fished the exposed oysters and Ryan caught his first Flounder ever just as we began our drift. Justin was making good casts and he hooked up and landed a nice sized Croaker. (The Croaker were ever present and somewhat of a nuisance). We moved up the river and Randy tangled with a high flying Ladyfish then Ryan put one more Croaker in the boat to wrap up another great day of fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Hard Fishing Pays Off

I fished this afternoon with Adam Garner and his two sons Jacob and Ryan, and Ryan's girlfriend Morgan, meeting them down at the Atlantic Seafood dock. We decided to run south, down the Horsehead area and fish some rocks for Mangrove Snapper. Sure enough, they were there and the anglers slowly put a "mess" in the box with a few of them approaching 14" in length.  Jacob added a keeper sized Flounder before we moved on, running around to the mouth of Jackstaff. Our first pass went way too fast - the wind pushed us along and we didn't have time to fish it so we turned
around and worked our way back. This paid off when Jacob put another keeper sized Flounder in the boat while Ryan tangled with a Ladyfish. Then Ryan had a strong hookup and a battle on his hands. He played the fish perfectly and soon landed a Slot sized 22" Redfish. Then Morgan put a Red in the boat, then Ryan put one in too. We hit one more spot then called it a day, another great one to be fishing Amelia Island waters.

Big Stingray and a Grande Slam

We had outstanding weather this morning, luckily with some overcast skies that kept things cool throughout most of the trip. I had met William Vickers and his son Jeff down at the City marina and we headed up to fish Tiger Island as the tide started in. Both anglers were making excellent casts and it paid off when Jeff hooked up and landed a nice Flounder. Then he had a strong hookup that ran deep and stayed deep! But Jeff was up to the game and played the big fish perfectly. After that first Flounder we were
all thinking "Door Matt Flounder" but after a good battle Jeff brought to the surface a big Stingray. But it was good fun landing the creature and the anglers kept on fishing. William put a feisty  Black "puppy" Drum in the boat and although we had some good bites later, we decided to run further north to the Jolley river and fish the "bank". William picked up a Seatrout to garner the duo an Amelia Island Back Country Slam of  Flounder, Black Drum and Seatrout then Jeff topped it off when he caught  nice Redfish, making it a "Grande" Slam. Jeff put a small Bonnethead Shark in the boat then we hit a couple of more spots before calling it a day, another great one to be fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida.