Saturday, January 28, 2023

Right Off The Bat

 I wrapped my week up fishing with Frank Wytiaz and his long time buddy and fellow Vietnam veteran Brad, meeting them down at the Sawpit Creek boat ramp early this morning. We eased around the corner and set up fishing Sawpit Creek bridge with slip floats and live shrimp on the very last hour of an outgoing tide. It was a our first "drop" of the slip float and it had drifted only about 5' away from the boat when it disappeared! But Brad was ready and "on point" - he slapped his bail shut and started cranking and hooked up and landed a nice hungry Seatrout - now that's the way to start a day of fishing! Both anglers got their lines out and both caught fish - another couple of Seatrout and a couple of Bluefish. 

We then ran up the Nassau and stopped at a marsh drainage, the tide still going out. We did the drift floats first then switched to jigs an shrimp, but had no luck. Our next stop was up at some docks at Seymore's Pointe and here Frank hooked up and landed another Seatrout. We then came around the corner and fished between a couple of docks where Brad reeled in a feisty Redfish and we picked up another Trout or two. 

We fished Broward Island on the incoming tide but the wind had started kicking out of the NE and it made for some "not so fun" fishing so we moved back to the shelter of Nassauville and drifted the floats (to no avail).

Our final stop was back at the Intercoastal, near Sawpit, and on Frank's first drift he had his float go under- he caught up the slack, lifted his rod and Fish On! Frank played it perfectly and brought to the net another Redfish - a good way to wrap up another great day of fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida. 

Friday, January 27, 2023

New Spots

I was meeting Steve Locke and  his brother Mike down at the Sawpit Creek boat ramp and rather than making my usual run up the Nassau we decided to fish the area a bit before we left. We first eased around and fished the Sawpit Creek bridge with slip floats. We had an extremely low tide and I had expected it to be starting back in but it was stubborn and was still going out as we fished. But we did pick up a couple of  hungry Seatrout and a couple of feisty Bluefish.

Our next stop was over at the intercoastal, fishing a downed tree and here we had some action. Steve was the first to hookup and it was a nice Seatrout and it was almost to the the net threw the hook! Ouch. But these two anglers were persistent and kept fishing and caught a few more Trout - Mike with a keeper. They also caught a handful of feisty Redfish and a couple of those had multiple spots.

We did then run up the Nassau and fished a dock thoroughly. Not much was happening except a Seatrout catch by Steve. After running around the corner, we fished some docks at Nassauville, then we fished Broward Island (and had a Bald Eagle fly over), then we made the run up to the mouth of Lofton Creek to pick up one  more Seatrout. 

The day had been cool and clear with only a bit of wind so as we made the long run back we counted it as another great day to be fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida.  

Thursday, January 26, 2023

The Final Fish

 When I talked to Glenn Langford last evening he indicated he'd like to target Sheepshead on our trip this morning. So when I met him and his wife Patti down at the Sawpit Creek boat ramp we had a "plan".  Our first stop was around at Sawpit where I (eventually) was able to latch on to one  of the pilings and the two anglers began to drop a jig and shrimp (no fiddlers available) to their base. I don't think we had much of a bite but while they were jigging I tossed a slip float out into the current and picked up a hungry Seatrout, a Blue fish, and a bait stealer.  We then made our way over to the mouth of Sawpit and fished some rocks, inching our way along them and dropping our bait to their base.  Glenn had pointed out a likely spot and sure enough, both he and  Pattie picked up a feisty Redfish each. Patti did have one big fish on but it bulled under the boat and then found something to swim under and, fish off!

Our next stop was up at Seymore's Pointe where we fished a likely dock with the jigs. Pattie reeled in another hungry Trout then we brought to the boat a nice keeper sized Flounder. We got up-current from the dock, dropped anchors off the bow and stern, and let the current and wind push us right up to the pilings where we could stay off the dock but fish the pilings. We did get a few "bumps" but no takers and no hookups.

The final stop was over at Nassauville, fishing some rocks and there things picked up. Glenn caught a small Seatrout, then had a strong hookup and after a good battle brought to the net a keeper sized Black "puppy" Drum. He followed that up with a keeper sized Seatrout then wrapped things up with a........Sheepshead!  And a keeper too! Wouldn't you know that the last fish caught for the day was the target fish and as we headed back we counted it as another great day to be fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida. 

Saturday, January 21, 2023

Re-Connecting Fishing Buddies


Yesterday I fished with Carmen Santamaria who had his old time fishing buddy Tony with him when we met up at the Dee Dee Bartels Park boat ramp. There was just a slight breeze and clear skies as we headed over to the outside of Tyger Island on the very first of an outgoing tide. I had live shrimp in the well for these two anglers to bait up their float rigs and soon they were fishing a grass line as that current started out. We got some bites right off but no takers until Tony hooked up with a Seatrout to "knock the skunk off".  Then we saw a "ripple" up in a pocket of grass and Tony made a perfect cast up past it, let it drift and BAM! Fish On! Tony played it perfectly and a after a good battle brought to the net a nice Slot Redfish (all fish caught today were released).

We crossed the way after that and fished another grass line briefly, then made our way over to Lanceford
Creek where we fished a grassy island, then a bulkhead, to no avail.. Our next stop was back around at Soap Creek and again, no fish. 

The tide had gotten down a bit so we found some dock pilings to fish with jigs and this paid off. Carmen got on the board with a nice Redfish catch, then both anglers were catching fish - Redfish - most of them small but a couple of keeper size. Just when I would think that the bite had quit, they'd hookup! We had beautiful weather and the fish cooperated so as we headed back to the ramp we counted it as another great day to be fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida. 

Monday, January 16, 2023

Cool and Clear For Trout and Redfish

 We fished out of Dee Dee Bartels Park today when I met Mark Averbuch and his son Cutler and grandson Harvey early this morning. It was still in the 30's but there were clear skies and the river was alike a lake. The tide still had a couple of hours of going to out to hit bottom so we made a long run up the Bell River to fish a deep bank with jigs and live shrimp. It didn't take long before Mark "knocked the skunk off" when he hooked up and landed a keeper sized Seatrout - and he was out deep. Then Cutler was fishing the outside of a dock and he too had a hard bite and a hookup - he landed another nice Seatrout. But it was Harvey who had the Redfish catch - after making a good cast to the pilings he felt the "bump", set the hook and Fish On! As you can see in the video, the fish was no match for Harvey who expertly brought it to the net. 

We another dock along there, to no avail, then made a run over into the Jolley where we fished the MOA on the last of the ougoing tide, then we continued on around to behind Tyger Island and fished deep with the jigs. Again, no real bites.

Our final stop was over at Eagans Creek where we set up current from a dock and here the action turned on. All three anglers caught Redfish - about 7-10 in all. We had a couple of breakoffs but these anglers went right back in there and picked up another one. The sun was up, the temperature was now up into the 50's and as we headed back we counted it as another great day to be fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida. 

Saturday, January 14, 2023

Recipe of the Month: Oyster Stew

Finally! We stopped by Houston's Meat Market on the way home and picked up a bushel of oysters - they were from Virginia - the York River. Coincidently, we had oysters at a party a couple of weeks before that and they had both Virginia oysters AND "local" oysters (they were actually from south Georgia). Those local oysters were clusters - 4-5-6 oysters in one lump, and were the best I've had in a while. BUT, you had to work for them. They're small and difficult to shuck. The Virginia oysters are singles and larger, easier to shuck, and you get more "bang for you buck", but not quite as tasty as the local oysters.  This bushel that we picked up from Houston's we roasted and shucked and ate them with hot sauce, butter, butter and horseradish. Note that I've got a habit of roughly counting the oysters as I wash and load them on the grill and the bushel ended up having approximately 12 dozen oysters. We shucked and ate all but 3 dozen, then shucked the rest to make oyster stew.

This recipe comes from


- 4 tablespoons butter

- 1 Large onion, finely diced

-  2 garlic cloves

- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper

- 1/4 teaspoon paprika

- 1/4 teaspoon salt

-  1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

- 6 cups whole milk or half and half

 - 1 teaspoon dried parsley

- 16 ounces fresh raw oysters, undrained


1.  Heat butter over medium heat in heavy bottom 3-quart saucepan. Add  diced onion and saute until tinder, about 5 minutes. Grate in garlic(or mince), continue to saute for another 1-2 minues, being watchful to not burn garlic. Add red pepper, paprika, salt, black pepper, stir to toast about 1 minute.

2. Drain oysters and reserve liquid (oyster liqueur)(we didn't have any of this as ours came right off the grill. BUT, we opened a can of crab meat and dumped it in, crab and liquid to add some thickness)

3) Reduce heat to low, add milk, parsley and oyster liqueur.

4) Cook over low heat until mixture is hot and beginning to steam, and bubbles just start to appear around the edge. Do NOT allow to come to a boil. Salt and pepper to taste.

5) Add oysters and continue to  cook over low heat until oysters begin to curl on edges. 

Tuesday, January 10, 2023

Beautiful Day for a Birthday

 We had a beautiful morning greet us when I met Bob Kossman down at the Sawpit Creek boat ramp with plans to make a morning of fishing on his birth day! We eased around to the old bridge and set up fishing with slip floats and live shrimp, fishing 14' deep,  on a tide that had been coming in for a couple of hours. Although we had one or two bites, we had no takers so we re-positioned to the other side of the bridge and stayed with the slip floats. This paid off with a few Bluefish catches - all almost the exact same size.

Then we made a run up the Nassau River to some docks and fished the pilings with jigs and live shrimp. There was almost zero current and I think that affected the bite (there was none). We eventually set up out deep (17') and pitched up to shallower water and this did the trick. We began to pick up Seatrout - a couple of them slammed the jig/shrimp pretty hard. Of the handful we caught, one of them was of keeper size.

Our next stop was down at Nassauville, fishing the jigs, and again we picked up a Trout or two. Continuing on, we made our way down to Broward Island and fished under the watchful eye of a Bald Eagle. Bob's first cast produced another hungry Seatrout. The next stop was up at Pumpkin Hill, drifting fixed floats.  The first few drifts produced no bites but I had seen some "nervous" water up in a pocket and as a drifted back Bob made a perfect cast and in just a minute his float slowly went under. Bob was patient, let the fish have it, then lifted his rod and set the hook. He could tell this fish was a bit bigger than the Seatrout we had been catching and sure enough, he brought to the net a fine Redfish. 

After hitting one more spot on the first of an outgoing tide we headed back to the ramp and counted it as another great birth day to be fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida. 

Friday, January 6, 2023

New Year - Great Fishing

 I kicked off the new year yesterday fishing with Allen and Lavern Webb, meeting them down at the Sawpit Creek boat ramp early on a clear sunny morning - and just a small bit of breeze-a great day for fishing! We bumped around to the Sawpit bridge and set up just as the tide started out, drifting slip floats in about 12' of water, back to the pilings and picked up a good handful of Seatrout, most in the 14" range.

We then made the run up the Nassau River to a large outflow at Seymore's Pointe, now drifting fixed 4 Horseman floats and here we again caught Trout. Lavern "went long" and picked up a keeper sized one. We bounced around a dock, drifted the floats, then came back to the other side and pitched jigs and live shrimp, but had no takers.

Our next stop was over at the mouth of Jackstaff, throwing the fixed floats at a a drainage and then along some marsh grass. We didn't get a nibble so we ran back thru Horsehead and around to the Nassauville docks where we went back to the jigs and this paid off with some Seatrout catches, deep, 18' of water.

The final stop was back fishing some dock pilings with the tide down a bit. Both anglers were getting "nibbles" but no takers until we had a strong bite and Fish On!  Lavern was on the rod and patiently worked the big fish to the boat. After a good battle she landed  a nice 21" Slot sized Redfish. We had a beautiful sunny day and had some action here and there so as we headed back to the ramp we counted it as another great day to be fishing here at Amelia Island, Florida.