Captain’s Blog – January 31, 2010 – Marathon Florida Keys – It was a guys’ weekend in the Florida Keys for Carolinians John Reid, his father-in-law Dan Reilly and brother-in-law Dan Jr.
We kicked off their fishing adventure with a half day in the bay. I took them to a wreck about nine miles out to fish for big mangroves and Spanish mackerel. We were not disappointed. The mackerel bite was nothing short of phenomenal, with literally a fish on every cast. We kept 39, all between three and five pounds. After cleaning, they netted down to 60 pounds of fish. I began the brining and smoking process today so I can get the first batch to them in time for their Super Bowl festivities.
Despite the mack attack, the guys caught sufficient mangrove snapper to have cooked at Castaway that evening. They had it prepared blackened and Mazatlan style, and reported both were delicious.
Dan caught a bluefish, which he considered a bonus as it is his daughter’s favorite and he was taking it back home to her in Clover South Carolina.
Day 2 was a full day fishing the patch reefs and the reef edge looking for more snapper. We caught a limit of large mangroves in the 16- to 18-inch class plus 13 lane and yellowtail snapper. We threw back a lot of keepers so we could continue fishing.
We also had numerous grouper, including a couple of keepers we had to release. Large Spanish mackerel and their tinker cousins couldn’t resist our hooks, but we had enough from the previous day so they will enjoy their freedom until I hit that spot again! Jack crevalle, porgies and blue runners entertained us as well.
The action was hot at every spot. The yellowtail bite was a little slow due to the lack of current, so we didn’t mess with them very long.