Sunday, February 28, 2021

Pop Finds the Honey Holes

 We had another nice morning today, albeit a bit foggy when we started. I had met Zach Peyton, his son Tyler, and his father Bob out at the Goffinsville Park boat ramp early and we crept thru the fog to our first stop over at Pumpkin Hill with plans to toss float rigs and live shrimp up near the marsh grass on a flooding tide. The trio of anglers were getting excellent drifts but all we got was a couple of nibbles. We fished further down that marsh line with the same results, then ran down to Broward Island and switched to jigs and shrimp. We fished both ends of the island on the last of an incoming tide but had the same results, no fish. 

Our next stop was back at Pumpkin Hill but around the corner, in search of a "honey hole" and it was "Pop" who found it. As he drifted his float by a grassy island his float disappeared and he had a hookup! Fish On!  Young Tyler was on the net and did an excellent job scooping up a nice Seatrout. Bob went back to the same area and had another hookup - the "skunk" was definitely off the boat. 

We then ran up into Christopher Creek and fished a bit with the jigs, then came back out and ran around to Seymore's Pointe, setting up at the mouth of a bay and drifting the floats. Bob had another hookup and reeled in a Trout ,then Zach got in on the action and caught one too, this one of keeper size (all fish caught today were released). Then Bob hooked up and with Tyler's help, they reeled in another keeper sized Trout. After another hookup, we moved on down a line of docks and fished floats and jigs.

Our last stop was down at Twin Creeks, fishing jigs, and we found one more Seatrout.  Young Tyler had helped with driving the boat, operating the trolling motor, netting fish, fetching bait, and releasing fish and he was casting his on spinning rod at the end of the trip. We headed in, counting it as another great day to be fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida. 

Saturday, February 27, 2021

23, 24 and 25

I fished again with the Soper Team - dad Larry and his sons Garrett and Dustin, but this time meeting them up at the Dee Dee Bartels Park boat ramp. Although the skies weren't as clear, the temperature was pleasant and we had a slight breeze that promise to keep the "no-see-ums" off!  We headed over to the outside of Tiger and fished float rigs along the flooded marsh line. Little did we know that it was going to be tough fishing today, but that first stop produced no bites. After moving over and fishing Manatee Cove with the floats and getting no bites, we moved on. 

Our next stop was over in the Bell River, fishing a pointe of grass, and again, no bites. Then around to Lanceford Creek to fish a seawall and a grassy island to no avail . Finally, after stopping at a dock and trying a jig and shrimp on a tide that had been falling for about an hour, we had a hookup!!  Dustin was on the rod and said the big fish slammed it!  He played it perfectly, even when the fish got up in the pilings, and he patiently worked out to a waiting net.

This nice Slot Red turned out to be 25" which added to their catch yesterday of a 23" Red and a 24" Red!

We moved around to Soap Creek where Garrett picked up a hungry Seatrout, then switch back to floats that produced nothing. Larry casually put a "baitstealer" in the boat before we called it a day, a rather slow one, but still a great day to be out on the water at Amelia island.  

Friday, February 26, 2021

From Fog To Sunshine And Good Fishing

 We had another outstandingly beautiful day today but it started out a bit foggy!  I had met Larry Soper and his sons Dustin and Garrett down at the Sawpit Creek boat ramp and as we headed up the intercoastal and rounded the corner to Jackstaff we hit a wall of fog and had to slow to a crawl.  But after easing in to the creek we dropped he trolling motor and began to fish the last of an incoming tide with float rigs and live shrimp. These guys were making excellent casts to the marsh grass but we had no takers. We crossed over to another edge and worked it with jigs and finally Dustin "knocked the skunk off" with a Seatrout catch. 

We ran thru Horsehead and around to some docks at Seymore's Pointe and set up, again fishing with the float rigs. As they drifted across a shell bed, Larry had a good bite and landed a hungry Seatrout. Then, after Garrett had made an excellent cast to a grassy point, BOOM! Big fish on!  The drag was ripping but he played it patiently and soon landed a nice 23" keeper sized Slot Redfish.  We fished a dock after that but had no luck then moved down a bit and here the action heated up and all three anglers were in on the action. 

Dustin pulled a big Black "puppy" Drum out, then Larry battled a 24" Slot Redfish to the boat, then Garrett added another big Drum to the tally. Larry found a keeper Drum off to the side while we were freeing up a jig. It was good fishing with the sun now out and what a beautiful  day!

After fishing the Nassau River docks for a bit, and then Spanish Drop, we called it a day, another great one to be fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida.

Thursday, February 25, 2021

Zero to Sixty

Boy what a beautiful morning we had today. It was sunshine, warming and just a slight breeze when a met Adam Mizell and his son Witt out at the Goffinsville Park boat ramp for a "birthday" trip for Adam set up by his wife Carrie. We made a quick run over to Pumpkin Hill and fished a dead high tide with float rigs and live shrimp....and didn't get a bite. We eased around the corner and continued with the float rigs and bites. Ouch.

After making the run to Seymore's Pointe we set up on the outside of an oyster bed where the water was beginning to come out of a bay as the tide started out, drifting the floats, and again, no bites. I eased back to fish some dock pilings where Witt began pitching jigs and shrimp. But Adam had stayed with the float and it paid off when his rod bent and his drag ripped, Fish On! I was thinking a small Redfish they way it was pulling but it turned out to be a nice 17" keeper sized Seatrout. Skunk off the Boat! Then Witt hooked up and landed a hungry Seatrout. He went back to the dock with an excellent cast and BOOM!                                                                      Big Fish On! Witt played it perfectly and after a good battle                                                                         landed a 18" Black "puppy" Drum.

We bounced down a dock or two and fished some more pilings. Witt landed another Drum and Adam doubled up with a feisty Redfish catch. Then Adam had another strong hookup and put a 21" Slot Redfish in the boat. He followed that up with another keeper sized Black Drum. Although we had started slow we had picked up speed fast!

Our next stop was down a Spanish Drop, fishing some exposed shell with the jig and shrimp. As we got to the end of a stretch I commented about the big oversized Red we had caught last week there and not minutes later, BOOM! Adam had a hookup. We knew the fish was big because it stayed deep, ripped drag, boiled once or twice then got back in the current and went long. But Adam was up to the challenge and patiently worked it to the boat where Witt did an expert net job to put it in the boat, boy what a catch - a 28" oversized Redfish, big enough to move Adam into 3rd place in the Anglers Mark 2021 Bragging Rights Tournament-Redfish Category(scroll down the right side of this report for standings). 

After working another bank where Adam picked up a keeper sized Flounder (and an Amelia Island Back Country Slam), we called it a day, another great one to be fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida.

Thursday, February 18, 2021

Beginning With A Bang

 What a weather swing! We went from the low 40's to the 60's in just a day, which made for pleasantweather fishing today, until the wind picked up. I had met Frank Boehm, Jack Severson and their friend Steve down at the Sawpit Creek boat ramp this morning and we made a quick run up the Nassau River. The tide still had about 45 minutes of going out so we set up alongside some exposed oysters and began pitching jigs and shrimp up current. We worked along for about 40 feet and after Steve had made a cast up near the shore he said he felt his jig come over an oyster and BOOM! Big Fish On! Steve played it perfectly. He kept the pressure on, let the light rod wear the fish out, then followed it to the stern of the boat as the big fish got deeper and into the current. Then around the engine he went, over to the port side and the fish dug deep. But Steve was up to the challenge and patiently brought to the net an oversized 28.5" Redfish, a fish big enough for Steve to claim 2nd place in the Anglers Mark 2021 Bragging Rights Tournament-Redfish Category (scroll down the right side of this report for standings).  After picking up one more feisty Redfish, we moved on. Just up the shore, Jack put a hungry Seatrout in the boat. 

Our next stop was up by docks at Seymore's Pointe as the tide started back in. Although we didn't get a
single Drum bite, Frank found a keeper sized Weakfish out deep. (All fish caught today were released). We then ran down to Broward Island and fished it thoroughly. Jack caught another Seatrout but that was about it. We did have a Bald Eagle watching over us for a bit.  After we fished Nassauville Rocks(the wind was really racking us here)  and up in Christopher Creek we called it day. The sun had come out and it was nice to see some clear skies for a change, so we called it another great day to be out on the water and fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida. 

Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Good Start and Weather Improving


After a huge storm overnight the weather was forcasted to improve as today wore on, and it did. When I launched the boat early the skies were overcast but as I prepped the boat at Dee Dee Bartels I could see the west winds blowing the cloud cover east over the island and clear skies followed. By the time me, Scott and Peggy Dunlap left the ramp it was clear and the sun was coming up. Although we had to deal with 14mph winds most of the day, at least we had sunshine!

Our first stop was around behind Tiger and the duo of anglers began to pitch jigs and live shrimp. We eased along the bank and it was Peggy that "knocked the skunk off" with a feisty Redfish catch. We continued moving down the bank and picked up two more Reds, one of which was of keeper size.

We then ran thru the wind, heading west and fished some docks up Lanceford Creek. Although our first cast produced a good bite, and a hookup, after a brief battle the fish threw the hook. OUCH.  Later, we had the same thing happen at another dock.  We fished a grassy island further down Lanceford, then made the run up to Bell River and finished out the day fishing deep on the bottom for Trout, to no avail. 

The day turned out to be real pretty so we left enough time to make a run by Cumberland Island and see some of the wild horses lazing in the sun, then we called it a day, another great one to be fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida. 

Monday, February 15, 2021

Nary a Nibble

 You always hear the saying, "a bad day of fishing is better than a good day at work", and I agree, but sometimes you gotta wonder.  It wasn't that it was terribly cold and it wasn't that it was raining, and it wasn't that the wind was blowing because none of that was happening.  It was just a tad bit cool, but there was a whole bunch of fog and mist, and even though the wind wasn't blowing, the fish weren't cooperating!  Brian Roach and his Son Michael had met me up at the Dee Dee Bartels Park boat ramp early this morning. The tide had been coming in for about two hours and I thought we could surely still have time to get some Drum around some dock pilings with jigs and shrimp. Even though Brian and Michael were making excellent casts we had nary a nibble at three different docks.

We moved over to another creek and fished the marsh grass, now drifting shrimp under a float with the current. Nary a Nibble. After running over to Bell River and trying the same technique, we ran further up the Bell and this did the trick. Brian had the first hookup near a dock and expertly landed a keeper sized Seatrout. Then the duo caught and landed a handful of Trout, all undersized. Brian picked up one on an artificial plastic Shad. We worked up and down those docks and picked up a Trout here and there but never did we hear a drag rip!  Our final stop was over in the Jolley River where we tried the jigs and he floats, to no avail.

As we headed back thru the fog/mist I still had to admit that a not-so-great day of fishing sure beats any day at work!

Thursday, February 4, 2021

Cool Morning Leads to Hot Fishing


It was kinda "cool" this morning when I launched - my truck thermometer showed 34 degrees, but there was almost no wind and the skies were clear. I had met Bob Kossman down at the Sawpit Creek boat ramp early and I while I was waiting on Bob to walk up I talked to two bank fishermen and they said they'd already picked up a few Seatrout on artificial grubs they were tossing. But Bob and I made the run up the Nassau River, around to some docks, and began pitching live shrimp on jigs. We fished it pretty good, had just a nibble or two, but no takers, so we moved back down the Nassau and fished some exposed oysters on the very last of an outgoing tide.  Bob did hookup and land one nice sized Whiting to "knock the skunk off". 

Our next stop was at some docks at Seymore's Pointe. We weren't getting any real bites until all at once, BAM! Bob had a strong hookup and  it was Fish On! This fish was ripping drag and had no plans of coming to the boat, but Bob kept the pressure on and eventually subdued and landed a big 22" Black "puppy" Drum, boy what a fish, and boy what a battle!

We moved down a dock or two and began pitching up under an old decrepit dock and soon we were catching an landing a good handful of feisty Redfish, one of which was of keeper size. I think every single fish came out of a 2 square foot spot!

After making the run down the Nassau to Broward Island we set up and began fishing our jigs up to the bank, letting them go to the bottom then as the current took them deeper, BAM! Hookup. Bob found a "honey hole" and landed a few keeper sized Seatarout to garner his Amelia Island Back Country Slam of Redfish, Black Drum, and Seatrout.  We fished further South for a bit and found another school of the Seatrout. These were small but fun to catch so as we wrapped it up, we counted it as another great day to be fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida.