Captain’s Blog – February 2, 2010 – Marathon Florida Keys – I had the pleasure of taking a group of Michiganders out for some phenomenal patch reef fishing.
I promised the guys a limit of mangrove snapper and we caught what could have been three or four limits! The fishing was almost too easy. We threw back dozens of legal fish in favor of our self-imposed 16-inch keeper size.
We got to my first spot, put four lines in and had four hook-ups in about 30 seconds. And it continued for about an hour. When the bite slowed down to a fish every two minutes or so, we moved on to spot number two, which turned out to be Grouper Central. We had at least three legal gags and one legal red – plus countless smaller gags, reds and blacks – all released. I can’t wait to get back to that spot with my charter on May 1!
After about 45 minutes of grouper frustration, we moved to the final spot of the day and tried for yellowtails. The mangrove snapper we so thick we couldn’t get a bait past them. We finished out the day with a limit of mangrove snapper, some lane and yellowtail snapper and a couple of Spanish mackerel.
Capt. Tom Beck was part of the charter group. He’s been fishing the Middle Florida Keys for twenty-plus years. He was in awe of the bite on the patch reefs and says he’s never seen anything like it.
Our weather has leveled out to a steady pattern of moderate temps and the fishing is outstanding. I encourage everyone up north to escape all that snow and cold and come on down to the Florida Keys for some of the best fishing we’ve had in years!