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· Senior Member
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I had the pleasure of fishing with Mike Siwek (tri-lakes bowhunter) and his wife Heather, son Easton and daughter Olivia yesterday. It was opening day of the recreational red snapper season yesterday and as expected it was a total circus. Boats running everywhere, the mouth of the pass was like a traffic jam, one guy decided to stop right in the mouth and catch bait! We left the dock at 6am and I heard on the radio at 610 that the bait man was already almost out of bait. I had talked to him the night before and he said he had approximately 10k baits penned up so he had a very successful day as well!
I could see boats all around the lip and bait was busting everywhere so I just found an empty spot and we started bait fishing. The crew got the hang of it pretty quick and were bringing them up 3-5 at a time so it didn't take long to get what we needed.

I picked a number about 20 miles SE and we headed out. Once I cleared the boats catching bait I set out a couple of trolling rods and we were fishing. It didn't take long until the clicker started buzzing with the first fish of the day. Easton was the first on the rod and he reeled in a nice bonita (false albacore tuna). We immediately bled the fish and took pictures then set them out again. Olivia was up next and she also reeled in a bonita. In just a few minutes we were on again and Heather reeled in a third one. We decided that was enough so headed to the snapper spot.

The weather was a little sportier than it was supposed to be, guess mother nature didn't watch the weather report. Wind was 15-18 out of the NE and waves were 2ft. That combined with all the boat wakes from everyone and their brother being out on opening day made for a pretty bouncy ride. Olivia enjoyed it, said it was her favorite part, the rest of us not so much! I looked at my chart and saw I had a spot about 12 miles out that I needed to check out, something I had marked when running, so I decided to give it a try.

The bottom machine lit up when I pulled up on the spot so I got baits ready and we set up a drift. On the first drop they hooked up a couple of nice snappers. The wind and waves were bouncing us around so much I couldn't keep the new trolling motor in the water so it was drift fishing only. After taking the fish off and re-baiting hooks we had drifted 500ft off the spot so had to go around again.

As it turned out the spot was a natural bottom area and we caught fish all around the actual spot I had marked. Easton had a great time reeling in his snapper and Heather and Olivia teamed up to catch their limit. After we had caught the limit of snapper we switched to chicken rigs and I dropped down a rod for grouper. First bite and I hooked a fish and helped Olivia with the rod and she cranked the reel. The fish kept digging for the bottom and she was straining to reel but she finally won and a nice gag grouper came over the rail.

Mike caught a squirrel fish about eight inches long so I hooked it on the grouper rig and sent it back down. It had barely hit the bottom when the rod doubled over and was almost jerked out of my hands. I pulled and cranked as fast as I could to get the fish off the bottom. You have to get the fish off the bottom the first few seconds of the fight or a grouper will run into his hole in the rocks and either hang you up or cut you off. I had three good pulls on him and handed the rod to Mike. The fish ran again and all Mike could do was hang on! Mike tried reeling but the fish was so strong the handle wouldn't turn. Before I could grab the line and give him some help the line went slack. The grouper won that round!
I tied on another hook and sent another bait down. It didn't even get to the bottom when it got slammed. The fish immediately ran away from the boat so I knew we either had a cobia or king mackerel on the line. I saw a bright silver flash and that told me it was a big king!! I handed the rod to Mike and I grabbed the gaff. We had the fish boat side twice but both times he saw the boat and ran peeling drag. The third time Mike got him close and I got a good gaff shot on him and put him in the boat. I didn't weigh him but guess he was about 20 pounds.
We finished the day with catching some mingos and white snapper. Time ran out but the seas and wind had died down and we had a great ride back to the pass. We got back and took pictures then cleaned the fish. I got a picture from Mike last night that they had taken the fish to a restaurant that I recommend called Brotula's where they will cook your catch for you. They said the meal was excellent! Can't wait for the next MWT group in a couple of weeks. If you are coming to the Destin area give me a call, I still have dates open in July.
Food Seafood Shorts Fish Wood
Shorts Leg Sky Plant Tree
Water Boat Shorts Vertebrate Watercraft
Water Boat Vertebrate Watercraft Sky
Food Seafood Shorts Fish Wood
Shorts Leg Sky Plant Tree
Water Boat Shorts Vertebrate Watercraft
Water Boat Vertebrate Watercraft Sky
Food Seafood Shorts Fish Wood
Shorts Leg Sky Plant Tree
Water Boat Shorts Vertebrate Watercraft
Water Boat Vertebrate Watercraft Sky
 

· King of Callaway
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· Trapper Groupie
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Tried to figure out how to send ya a u2u or pm but this sites changed a lot since I was on daily.Do ya have a website or can ya post a contact # so I can call ya? Thanks
 

· Under appreciated
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Tried to figure out how to send ya a u2u or pm but this sites changed a lot since I was on daily.Do ya have a website or can ya post a contact # so I can call ya? Thanks
BigL... upper right of the page there is an INBOX. Click on yours, you have a message from me.
 

· King of Callaway
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We ate one bag of snapper and the grouper we caught,the false albacore we ate as an appetizer, we have several bags left to take home of red snapper
So glad ya posted
You can help my case to go down there to fish
 

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Well done Captain Glen!
 
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