May 2019 Fishing Thread

The oceans are warming up, and it is peak freshwater fishing. Post your reports, photos, and questions here!

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I am hoping to get some catch and release fishing before the June 1 cobia season starts. Several friends have had one hell of a spring drum season down at Cape Hatteras. The whole coast north of Hatteras seems to be loaded up with bluefish from 12-20 inches long. I haven't heard much of anything about big bluefish this spring. I have heard rumors of sea mullet ("roundhead" in Virginia) in Virginia Beach. My birthday is May 9 and I need to treat myself, but life just seems to keep getting in the way.

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

Speaking of Cobia, this was a custom tie I did for a guy down in VB who is hoping to get his first on fly this year. He sounds like he knows his cobia. I may fish with him at some point. The fly was a foot long and I love being handed a $20 for a single fly!

https://www.instagram.com/p/BwyEqcQDAwL/

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

I could see that working. Most of the lure profiles (Ronz's or bucktails) for spinning tackle have a similar sized profile. The pink and chartreuse are popular as much so the angler can see the strike easier. Brown and orange patterns are also good (crabs.)

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

Heading out tomorrow, finally, for a local trout scout. I saw some little spot being caught in the East River, so I know things are happening, but these early trips don't usually pay off so well for me. We'll see, report tomorrow pm.
Down to Nags Head this weekend for four days of fishing with my good ole Hokie buddies from the 70s. Last year down there, it was rays, bales of sea grass, and "sea mullet" as the uninformed call them these days, but hoping for some more varied and interesting surf action this year. Bait will be soaked, seafood will be scarfed, beer will be swilled. Oh yeah, fish will be caught, I'm sure of it. Right?

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

I went out in the East River Sunday. No bites on anything.

804

I stopped by Williams Wharf on the East on Sunday and there were several folks fishing bottom rigs. They'd been catching spot all day, two at a time, but it would take three of them cooked whole to make a sandwich. Tiny little fish.
I don't expect much this morning, but we'll see. There really should be some trout around.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

I would think the ankle biter croaker should be around by now and the bigger ones should be getting here sooner rather than later I was gonna paddle around a bit this weekend on the east to see if the menhaden schools had shown up yet.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Menhaden are in the river. I've seen them the last couple of times I've gone to Williams Wharf, but nobody has seen a croaker except for a couple of dinks in somebody's crab pot.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

I fished Moormans today just northwest of Crozet. The brook trout bite was pretty darn good. I caught somewhere close to 20, a few bigger ones over 10 inches. Must have had 40-50 hits on the dry fly. Gorgeous day on the water. don't trout fish much any more but it's crazy how a seven inch brookie on a 2 weight fly rod gives you the same rush as casting to a big saltwater fish.

If anyone has ever wanted to trout fish in VA, particularly for brookies, this is the year and the time to do it. I'm told this is the best brookie fishing we have had in 15-20 years with all of last years rain.

I'll see if I can dig up a photo from today.

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

Ever fished the south river below the falls? Ive seen the upper stretch of it and was trying to find a good brook trout stream to hike to with the girlfriend. Moormans looks really nice but wonder how packed it gets on the weekends with college still in at the moment.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

I have not fished it below the falls. There's so much good brookie water, I'm sure you can get away from people on the weekend. If I were you, I'd hit the Rapidan or the Rose. There will be people, but there's miles of water.

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

I hiked to the stretch above the falls but it was way too small to hold anything up off the parkway. I hit the Rose river after we went to the rapidan area last time and the rose had some in it but all I could find were small smallmouth of course.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

If you were catching smallmouth in the Rose, than you were below the Farm and technically in the Robinson. Gotta keep driving up that road another ten minutes till it hits gravel and then hits ends at the parking circle and then start fishing there. Brookies all over the place and some brown trout too

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

Yup we were right near the farm bit lots of people pulled off on that stretch so we found a hole with nobody in it and messed around. Didnt know we needed to go further to get around the farm I might have to try that one time that wasnt too far out there.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Hitting the Gulf Stream off NC this weekend. Hope to have some pictures to show. Weather for Saturday has been iffy.

Good luck! I will be out on my headboat trip offshore Friday night thru Saturday night. It does look like the wind kicks up near the end of the day.

Fished four hours at Milford Haven/Hole in the Wall. Drifted unsuccessfully for flounder (didn't expect them yet) and then fished for speckles. We did manage to catch two 13" trout, one on a Gulp Shrimp and one on a mirrolure, and had a couple more bites apiece. Better than nothing, and not horrible for an early season foray.

Edit: Almost forgot the 12" striper I got at the Gwynn's Island bridge on a gulp swimming mullet.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Looking at getting a pair of Costa sunglasses since I accidentally broke my cheapo pair working yesterday and got some cheap replacements for working but want to get a good pair for fishing so was curious if theres a serious difference between the glass and plastic lenses if anyones used both or has a reccomendation that would be welcome.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

I have the plastic and I love them, but they tend to fog up in the summer.

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

Which ones do you use I was looking mostly at the fintail or tuna alley since theyre more my price ranges. I've never owned a pair that dont fog up in the summer but I've always had ones that shield the sides of my eyes so I'm thinking I might try and get a pair that allow air in the sides better.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Try on whatever frames first. I've owned a lot of costas. They all fit very different.

Any that hug your face are going to fog. I went with a more relaxed frame (Motu) and I've stuck with this pair for a couple years now.

Lense:
580G- expensive, heavy, noticeably better for glare.
400G (I don't know if they still sell this) - Perfect middle of the road weight to quality neither glass lenses scratches easily.
P - never owned

Lense Color is far more important than style get the one that's going to fit what you use them for most of the time.

(add if applicable) /s

Yup I was gonna run and try a bunch on first and see what they have I've got oakley holbrooks I wear for work all day but the fits not right for my head I've found too tight. Ive seen some 400G lenses for sale but I'll probably go the plastic route for now. Was gonna go green blue mirrored lenses since these will be for fishing solely.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

green blue mirrored lenses

My favorite lenses color its good for just about everything.

(add if applicable) /s

Mine are fintails.

I am using them looking for cobia inshore. I use the green mirror but copper/amber glass/plastic.

The biggest issue is when I use a buff to cover up glare off my cheeks, my glasses fog up. Damned if you do damned if you don't.

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

I personally like the fantail and the jose styles. I have both glass and plastic and I like the glass a lot better. The plastic ones are lighter which is a benefit in most (but not all) situations, but the glass ones are more durable and clearer in my experience.

Sierra Trading Post usually has serious discounts on them, although you can't be too picky about your styles.

804

There are different colored lenses for different fishing applications. They do make a difference.

No matter what color lens, the 580 Glass lenses are top of the line.

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

Gonna stick with Green mirrored ones they seem to be best middle of the road for what I'll be doing in rivers and on big water as well.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Honestly, I wear a pair of Shady Rays now that are just as good as my old Costa fantails and half the price (more than half if you dont need a scripted pair)

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Does anyone want a 20% off fly tying coupon for Green Top? Must be spent by 5/6 and only can be used on Fly Tying supplies.

Respond with your email

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

For you surf fishing guys.... a cobia was caught south of the point on South Beach today. Feet in the sand!

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

Man, that is too cool. Definitely a goal someday...

I'm getting some excitement up a little bit. Next week seems way too far away.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

I don't think I'll get to fish at all until second week of June during our week in Salvo. Living vicariously so keep the stories coming!

I know of three cobia caught off the beach below Cape Point at Hatteras today. I bet there were more. Limits for the boat guys.

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

Nice. I wouldn't know the first thing about how to do this without some serious recon, TKP archives and otherwise. We're planning on fishing our asses off that week, but not sure any of us are good for anything other than chucking weight and bait in the surf for whatever bites while also flinging lures for Spanish (hopefully).

It's the same as big drum surfcasting. Need a 12-13' coventional rod rated for 4-10 ounces also called a heaver with a small coventional reel with magnetic brakes to get the distance to get bait way out there. Use a 8/0 to 10/0 circle hook on a 2-4" leader. Chunk of mullet, menhaden, bluefish whatever is freshest.

Ding ding ding. Fish for drum, hope for a cobia. It really is random luck, although some guys do use tackle with a higher line capacity and yak their baits out.

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

I was gonna ask that. If all I have is spinning gear, but pretty stout surf spinning gear, and we kayak out the baits, will that work? Or is conventional really required to even have a prayer? Thanks to you both.

It just depends on your line capacity. Braid, of course, gives you more wiggle room. But don't use it at the Point or you will have a mess on your hands. Too many people, too much current, and tangles with braid are bad news.

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

It would be beneficial to kayak the baits. You can use a lot larger bait than when you are trying to cast it out. Conventional is really important if just casting because the max distance potential compared to a spinner. How big of spinning reel do you have?

Going to try to hit all my replies in this one post.

Thanks for the info on the kayak. I have a couple Penn Fierce II 6000 combos. 490 yards of 30 lb braid. 9'-0" medium heavy action rods. Is that workable?

The ladders, cherry pickers, and water balloon launchers are all hilarious. I think I'd consider the water balloon launcher, for shits and giggles if nothing else.

Are the ladders on the boats even legal? Seems like a really stupid idea.

I'm getting anxious for the trip. 5 weeks is gonna take forever.

I'll check the archives but any thoughts on rigging for these bigger fish? All I have right now is your typical hand tied pompano rig. I'm not sure what is best for the bigger fish.

Thanks again all!

That can work, lots of capacity is good off the beach so you don't get spooled. I would suggest getting a spring scale to measure your drag so you know how much you can crank down if you have something big on and are getting way down in the spool. Set it around 6-8 lbs and know how many turns you can do to crank down to 10 lbs. Its a lot tighter than you think it is. Also, something to think about your drag pressure increases as you lose line off the spool.
Rigging wise, 6 or 8 ounce pyramid sinker on a fishfinder rig with a foot or two of leader, snell a 8/0 to 10/0 circle hook. I'd say go 60-100 lb leader or if you get cut off one time get a wire leader so you can catch a shark. I can expand more if you need me to.
Hope you get on something big!

This sounds fun especially if you get into a big shark. My luck id find the biggest cownose ray this side of the ocean.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

God damn crown noses were everywhere in florida. We were live lining 8"+ mullet for tarpon when one took off. We thought it was a big snook...nope crown nose swimming by managed to sink a circle hook in its shoulder. The big head shakes my bud was feeling was just it trying to swim and bumping the line.

(add if applicable) /s

Thanks! Let me digest this over the weekend and if I have questions I'll come back here with them. I'm hoping to finally hook something other than whiting, puppy black drum, tiny permit/pompano (still not sure what the hell these little fish we catch every time are. Looking at identification info online they appear to have the body shape of a permit and not pompano, but max size we've caught is about 8").

That is workable for yakking the bait out. You won't get much casting distance with those, and the Fierces have very breakable components and so so drag washers. If you do hook a big ray or shark, that may be the end of the reel's functionality.

3rd Gen nailed the rig. Depending on your preference (do you want to set the hook or trust a circle) go with an 8/0-10/0 J or octopus circle. SNELL THE HOOK! This is critical or you will miss hook ups. Here is a photo of a fish finder. However, go shorter on the bite leader, and don't use the plastic casting sleeves for your weight. Just use a 200lb snap swivel.

Use a fish finder rig.

I go light on my bite leader because if I hook a shark, I want it to bite off the bite leader so I get my sinker (a single 8oz sinker goes for $3-6 dollars a piece in a tackle shop now.) Hence, I use 60lb bite leader, which is also easier to tie.

If you are yakking the baits out, you can use a longer bite leader, but I wouldn't go over 12 inches.

If you are going to cast out chunk baits, use as short a bite leader as you can tie. In the fall, we try to get it 3 inches or less from the hook knot to the barrel swivel, and most guys just use a crimper to make it even shorter.

Have about 30 feet of 40lb mono for a shock line. This gives you mono for your sinker to slide up and down. Also, when you have to drag your fish to the beach through the last breaker, the heavy mono will handle the shock better when you try and horse the fish. Finally, DO NOT CAST without using a shock line. Otherwise you are endangering the folks around you in the event of a break off. You can use an alberto knot or a double uni to tie your main line of braid to the shock line.

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

Wow! Excellent info. Thank you! I have some stuff to buy. Hope we have success.

SNELL THE HOOK! This is critical or you will miss hook ups.

Why are there missed hookups with say a clinch knot versus snelling a hook?

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

Hook eye orientation. You can not snell a hook if you don't get an octopus or a snell hook and be fine. but the pull of the line should be inline with the shank. Octopus and snell hooks have eyes turned up.

(add if applicable) /s

Now lookee here. Dese guys is tryin' to make you feel like you ain't in the game, but there's more than one way to do these things. Here's what ya do. You get you the tallest step ladder you can get and you put it in your pickemup truck. Then you bungee and duct tape the hell out of it so it don't tip too much, then you back that truck right down to the surf and you climb to the top of that there ladder with your surf casting gear loaded with one of French's friends Bowed Up cobia jigs and you sight fish for 'em when they come by. That's the ticket.
Seriously, though, we saw a boat rigged up like that cruising the CBBT looking for cobia last summer. Guy was pretty high up there looking, but it looked precarious to me. And as another aside, the first and biggest cobia I ever caught was out there baitfishing with a spinning surf rig, and had no trouble with line capacity or anything else catching that 50" fish. Mono was all I had in those days, but braid opens a lot of room. As I'm sure you've gathered, the reason for the heaver is to get the distance necessary to get those fish that cruise outside the sandbar and are almost impossible to reach with a spinning rig cast from shore. If you have the line and the kayaks, you can absolutely get your bait out there and if you can keep the bait fresh, you have the opportunity to get into those bigger fish, like the drum, or luck into a cobia (not likely, but possible), or, more likely, get a bigger shark than you might closer in. Good luck!

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

The makeshift towers you see in SC when the cobia come through is so terribly concerning. Lots of 15-18ft jon/flats/bay boats with 8-12ft ladders "secured" to the deck.

(add if applicable) /s

Pain is Temporary, Chicks Dig Scars
Glory is Forever, Let's Go Hokies!!

I mean at least that ones on the stern?

(add if applicable) /s

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

I've used this line three times on women since you last posted it and it has not worked.

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

I wouldnt say its a good pickup line more of a if she agrees shes a keeper type statement. Make sure if you say it you emphasize handy not handsy I could see how a little slip up like that could cost ya

Red Green is my spirit animal I could spend days picking his brain, if theres a dream job for me its doing what he does with a bucket of useless junk.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

You may not be holding the duct tape the right way...

Sometimes we live no particular way but our own

Underrated comment of the Fishing Thread right here.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Why not get ya a cherry picker and get some good tires for the beach on it and then just use that to get a good viewpoint?

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

You will see some crazy stuff when folks try those homemade ladder set ups on their boat instead of a strong metal casting tower.

But, the cobia which are being caught on the beach are being caught on chunk bait by guys targeting drum.

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

You don't need a kayak, you don't need a ladder, you don't need a cherry picker.

You need a water balloon launcher. Seriously.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BkTntoel3bs/

Also, make sure you get the proper lean technique down when hooked up. Chicks dig it.....

https://www.instagram.com/p/Bl1d40AnHdn/

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

https://myfwc.com/fishing/saltwater/recreational/snook/
Snook, Red drum and specks are now catch and release only on the west side of florida in reply to the bad red tides theyve had the last few years to try and help the fishery recover. Effective may 11th the map in the article shows the effected areas.
Wasnt planning on keeping any snook but was thinking about looking for trout to eat while in florida but its good to see the state departments arent afraid to do whats right in helping populations bounce back. 1

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Gil McRea and his crew at FWRI are as good and as professional as it gets. As a result, FWC's Commissioners seldom overrule their recommendations.

You fish in the area a bit dont you? What are your thoughts on the catch and release regs do you feel theyre needed then?

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

I'm in NEFL and don't fish SWFL. I do know a handful of folks down there.

Also full disclosure, I'm a retired fed conservation official and still do some part time consulting...policy work and trouble shooting. So I'm likely a bit biased because most of FWC's top leadership are professional friends (like Gil), and a few of them are personal friends as well. It's not a huge community of people and I've been in FL since 1996, so we all know each other, and I always hung my hat on working closely with state partners. I was the federal liaison to FWC during the Deepwater Horizon spill.

Back to fish...FWRI is a world class group (no hyperbole) and does a great job of monitoring its fish stocks. It sets specific targets for adults reaching breeding age. When they increased the redfish and trout limits in NEFL a few years ago, that was the basis. Fishing is a billion dollar industry in FL and they don't restrict it on a whim; I don't know the specifics here, but I'd bet there is very hard data behind the closure.

FL is also spending big money to get on top of the ag runoff issue (one of my current projects). The previous governor hated (not too strong a word) Water Management Districts and decimated their staff and monitoring money. Those cuts ultimately bit them in the butt big time...the red tide caught them flat footed. FL will not make the same mistake again. Meanwhile, it's apparently, and sadly, C&R for awhile.

I've always been impressed with FWC...I know from my recent visit to SWFL that there are quite a few guides that are incredibly pissed at the whole situation. They lose money from red tide, then lose interest from people coming to fish because its all C&R. I think the vast majority understand the need for the regs but they're definitely going to take a hit.

(add if applicable) /s

Yup the red tide is what kept us from making a trip down last year because of how bad it was the last time we were down there during the red tide in 2017. It has a huge effect and they cant let it happen again otherwise people like me will look other places to go where they dont have issues like that and when tourism is the staple industry in those places that can have a big ripple effect.
I understand why people are pissed on the C&R bit but we as a whole need to learn to be better on managing what we have before its gone ala the tuna over on the other side of the world.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

I wasn't aware of the closure until this thread so at least now I know enough to ask. If I find out anything worthwhile in the coming days/weeks, I'll let y'all know.

I could read that type of stuff for days really interesting to see how they all handled the red tides in their own ways. Glad to see there are people still looking after all this stuff seriously I've seen some great fisheries go to crap over poor management and poor practices by those using them its refreshing to see this.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

For the record, I absolutely agree with their decision. We got hit HARD last year and I honestly hope to see this last for 2 years and more if needed. I haven't caught a decent damn snook since the days after Irma.

However, you should be fine if you're on Keewaydin (I think that's where you said you'd be, correct me if wrong). That's south of that area.

Tarpon are in Caxambas pass pretty heavy right now, and I overheard a renter here say they grabbed a few good reds last week up in the mangroves. I grabbed a few Whiting and a slammer Crevalle off the beach last Friday morning before work and saw a couple bait schools up close but didn't get anything around them to bite.

Think I might grab my buddy's kayak and do some sight fishing on the flats in Rookery Bay on Saturday....

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All the reports around Naples are sounding good for next week. Spent what was left in the fishing budget last night on my DOA baits and circle hooks and popping corks for live bait fishing. Would love to find some jacks but I'm more geared for snook so dont know how well that translates for the jacks. We have some kayaks and a power boat so I'll definitely wander around the mangroves a bit to see what else I can find. Got plenty of flies from flyguy in shrimp and minnow patterns so those should keep me covered for sightfishing bait schools on the beach.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Jack and snook you can pretty much catch on the same stuff. Just a matter of where you are mostly. Although they both like hanging out around the bridges. Jack like the faster currents though

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Never fished for Jack hopefully I can find them. Guess gordons pass would be best on a moving tide either way to find the crevelle. Gonna be on the beach mostly so I'll have to look and see if I can find breaks in sandbars that might allow for a slight channel to occur and create more current on moving tides.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Shoot, they'll bite just fine off the beaches, just wont be the bruisers for the most part.

At the very south end of Keewaydin used to be (I said "used to be") an underwater point with a pretty nasty drop off on the Gulf side. On the outgoing tide snook used to just hang out right there and wait. I'm sure the bottom has changed a bit, but it'd be worth a few casts.

There's also an oyster bar right at the point where the channels converge to the NNE of the island too (where you would take the channel either north to Naples or east to Rookery Bay/Isles of Capri) . That's where we pick up our baitfish most of the time, but I'm sure there's predators lurking. We just never took the time to look. I dont remember if its reachable from a shore based cast or not honestly.

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"Look at this... This is just spectacular.... These people are losing their minds"

FREE THE "STICK IT IN" CHANT!!!

Chasing smallies on Jordon Lake NC. Not so good at it!

"Hey Bud, you wont have to hold the opponent to 17 points anymore."

Few words of advice for ya. Yum dinger, 4 inches, rigged wacky, Ned, or texas rigged in craw like colors or watermelon with red flake, or pumpkin with purple flake will produce a smallie wherever they are. That or suspending cranks if the waters clearish.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Knocking wood- I hope they show up in the next three weeks.

I tied up my old crabby pattern on my new Penn Clash 6000 today. I need to get on the board fast. If I can check the box, I am debating checking some fishing stuff and fishing the pier when I go to Australia at the end of the summer.

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

I see the Navy put some structure in the river last night

Glad everyone was okay

I guess if you're going to pick somewhere to slide into a river, that's a good one. Wide shallow shelf (good reds in the summer), calm water, and a place where they practice water rescues almost every day of the year.

Stay away from the Buckman Bridge today, traffic will be a mess.

edit: possibly some pets on board : (

Is the pet thing something other than pets? Although I am a certified Navy brat, born on the Naval Academy, mom and dad served, etc., but if that's some sort of navy code thing for nukes or something, I'm ignorant. Otherwise, an explanation for the Navy having pets on board whatever it is you are referring to as "structure" would help me understand what happened.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Well, I'm bummed, too. Thanks for the info.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Got out and fished my kraken and Colton trade winds setup yesterday the largemouth liked my crystal schminnows I tied for Florida and then went nuts for the frog flies and the grasshopper foam bugs killed it

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Guided on the Chickahominy today. Clients threw frog lures. Had several blowups, mostly by pickerel. They landed one nice pickerel and a largemouth. Another angler I talked to lamented catching bowfin. I love them and was frustrated we didn't catch any.

Guiding again there on Tuesday and then Wednesday I am going to fish Weldon for Stripers.

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

It has been a rough couple of months in the French household. Two of my good friends from Maryland talked me into a Sunday trip to the Delaware coast to see if we could find some big gator bluefish. I headed to Germantown to meet Fishbait, and then we picked Tuna up in Annapolis. We arrived at Cape Henlopen to find a high slack tide (the bite had been on incoming) and a soaking rain paired with 15-20 MPH northeast winds.

As the locals scurried for cover, we ventured on the the pier. Fishbait managed a short flounder on jigged strips of spot. Unfortunately, the blue crabs were thick. He was reeling up crabs refusing to let go of his strips, while Tuna and I (soaking bunker for chopper bluefish) were getting picked clean within minutes of getting a fresh bait in the water. The conditions were miserable. My PVC pants kept my legs dry, but the PAIR of rain jackets I had on soaked through within the first hour. After about 2 hours of misery, I headed into the nice restroom facilities at CHSP and used their hand dryer to try and dry out my gear. By the time I finished, Fishbait and Tuna decided to wrap it up. We headed to Indian River Inlet to be able to fish while using the bridge as some cover.

This was my first time at IRI, and it was challenging. There was heavy bird activity, but also very heavy current and we had the NE wind in our face. It was very difficult to cast into the working fish. However, it was more productive than CHSP. We fished from 1 to 3, and I managed two 12-14 inch bluefish and a half dozen similar sized hickory shad. At 3:00pm, my buddies (who are connoisseurs of buffets) decided that they wanted to hit up The Bonfire, an all you can eat crab legs and prime rib buffet in Ocean City, for the early bird.

Now, I am a big man, and I like to eat. But, for some reason my stomach shrinks just before a buffet meal. I had a mixed bag of some prime rib, BBQ, and chicken, but only got seconds. Meanwhile, my buddies pounded 8 and 6 plates of crab legs each before getting to the prime rib. Once again, I was shamed. However, it was a good meal, and we decided to try and hit the Route 50 bridge catwalk in Ocean City on the way home, as there was a brief break in the rain.

It was a good decision. Fishing the north side of the bridge on incoming, I managed two bluefish and a half dozen shad right next to the channel in some calm water. A small gator (about five pounds) managed to cut my 25 pound fluoro leader as well. I retied and we saw some birds working towards the center of the bridge. We ran over and had a full scale blitz on our hands- mostly hickory shad with some 2 pound class bluefish mixed in (18-20 inches) feeding on glass minnows/silversides. For the next 40 minutes, it was non-stop catching with 3-4 shad for every bluefish. As we were completely sucked into the blitz, a torrential rain hit and we got drenched. Once we got our 30 fish limit of blues between the three of us, we bolted leaving them biting. I got back around midnight last night, exhausted and wrinkled like a prune, but very content with the trip.

Gotcha plugs (I went with the one ounce silver mylar with a red head) and a red and white bucktail were both effective. I went to the bucktail when I got tired of hooking shad with treble hooks.

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

Sounds like a lot of fun minus the rain bluefish blitz is about as good as it gets.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Never fished DOA airheads for snook but seeing alot of reports suggesting them and was gonna grab a bag incase conditions get nasty for fly fishing anyone know what colors work best? Was gonna grab red head white body then was thinking a rootbeer one as well greentop only has 6 inch ones.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

the white/pearl body. Those became my favorite lures after my trip to FL. What this video lets you know the versatility. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BFLQ6LGtLws I always cut the tail. I usually add a little bit of weight (1/16, 1/8) just to make it just subsurface and help with casting. They do work awesome as a topwater with a little foam pinned in the body.

(add if applicable) /s

Ahh so ll white then I'll see what they have this evening they were best pricewise at 4$ a pack. I was just going to use the 1/8 swimbait hooks I use for smallmouth with all my plastics. I'll give em a go thanks for the tip.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Yup, to be honest I've only ever used the all white version. The red head ones I'd use too just because that's generally a combo I'd use with a jig head.

Play around with rigging I haven't really found a way they don't catch fish the swimbait keel hooks are easiest. I've done it on smaller skip gaps with a split shot pinned 6" up the line, unpinned bullet weights, floats, jig heads, popping corks, etc. They seem to work no matter what...if they don't that body cavity holds a lot of pro cure when you feel like cheating.

(add if applicable) /s

Never heard of procure. Was gonna see how a 4/0 worm offset hook works on it and that should be big enough and I've got a pile of the 1/8 ounce weights to try different rigging. Never done the popping cork stuff but figured I'll be using one while I'm there with the DOA shrimp and such as well since I've heard they really help out.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

I keep a bottle of procure in my boat for when times get rough. It's a blended oil of menhaden, mullet, shrimp, etc. You can slap it on just about any jig, hardbait, soft plastic and it sticks for a surprising amount of time and works incredibly well at least for inshore.

(add if applicable) /s

Damn that thing looks ridiculous with the cut tail

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

It's actually a really great subtle buzz bait presentation if you cut the tail and rig it for top water. Those baits are so simplistic which is a lot of the reason I love DOA, they don't over engineer stuff to attract customers they just rely on their stuff catching fish.

These are some of my favorite redfish plastics: https://www.doalures.com/category-s/1930.htm (they massacre walleye too)

The PT7 is literally a floating shit https://www.doalures.com/category-s/1999.htm

Their crabs don't have a single realistic feature https://www.doalures.com/category-s/1843.htm

(add if applicable) /s

Always loved the shrimp when fishing the OBX for drum but I'm gonna grab a small selection of DOA stuff for the beach as backup plans. Something to say about keeping it simple. Think of all the extraordinarily elaborate flies that people do and how sometimes just a simple closer out does it all.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Went out this past friday. We fished out of Morehead City, NC with Twin Fin (Casey). Between the four of us, we landed 3 Wahoo (one 59 lb, one in the 40 lb range), 1 King Mackerel, 1 Amberjack, 1 Sailfish (not pictured), 2 Barracuda, 1 False Albacore, and 13 or 14 Mahi. I pulled in the sailfish and the False Albacore. I loved the fight of the False Albacore. A lot of the other fish just seemed like you were dragging them to the boat. It was a pretty even split between all of us on who brought in the Mahi.

We had lousy weather. Waves were running up to 6 or 7 feet, with the occasional 8. We were skirting the edges of a rain storm on multiple occasions, getting somewhat wet. We went right through the middle of a storm and got soaked. But, our best bites were during that bad weather. Most all of the catch occurred in the morning. Afternoon was very slow, but we did manage to catch a pair of Mahi on the last two lines that were out. The lines were being pulled in; I made a comment about how we were down to our last chances. Got a hit on one, and then suckered in the bull that was with her.

The sailfish wasn't well documented before it was sent along its way. Unfortunate, but still cool to catch one.
Supposedly we had 250lbs of fish filleted on the docks (worth every penny).

My hat's off to you, especially in that weather. Seven foot seas sound brutal. That is one heck of a stringer in those conditions, especially the wahoos. Those will make for good meals!

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

We had friends who were out on a 31' boat. They took more of a beating than we did, but they didn't go through the storms. The 55' boat did reasonably well. And luckily, waves of that height weren't constant. We were seeing a lot of 4' waves. Just the stretches of bigger waves.

We've eaten on the mahi and wahoo thus far. I think the mackerel is getting smoked today. All we've eaten thus far has been grilled. I had it with Montreal Steak seasoning on it for the first time. That was surprisingly good. We prepped the mahi two ways (other being blackening spice); and the montreal was nicer.

I fished the Staunton/Roanoke River pretty hard Friday and Saturday from Brookneal to Clarkton to close out the Striped Bass fishing season. Some guys caught as many as 10 early in the morning Friday and hardly anyone caught anything Saturday. There will probably be a few stragglers caught the next few days but I would say the spawning run is done.
Through word of mouth it seemed like a pretty good year for Stripers spawning and some decent fish were caught two to three weeks ago. Now that the water temp is around 68 degrees, most of the stripers have moved on and people are going for Walleye, Small Mouth and Cats.

I went on a 22 hour overnight charter on a headboat out of North Myrtle Beach this weekend. We left the dock at 9 pm. Spent the first bit rigging up our rods and then slept til we got out to the fishing ground around 12:30 am. Picked at small vermillion snappers and grunts the first couple stops. Some of using jigs and some using traditional two hook bottom rig. We started keeping some small grunts for grouper bait. One of the guys got set up for grouper and started putting out the grunts. He caught a few 2-3' sharks which was fun for him being his first time offshore (from Wisconsin). At one of the stops he caught a low 30s inch cobia which was cool. Once it got daylight we started to speed jig some and there wasn't any action on that til the 2nd or 3rd stop in the light. I got the first amberjack. We picked at those the next few stops in the 5-10 lb range. In the middle of the day, we found some bigger amberjacks and almaco jacks. Which were all fun fights, all 4 of us from our group got a solid jack. Ended up with a good stringer of small bottom fish, an almaco jack and a false albacore for drum bait. Got my speed jigging technique down some more.

Fished the Chickahominy today. It SUCKED. One small bluegill came to hand. 4th time this client has fished with me and 3rd time he has basically been skunked. FML. He did say I wasn't the worst guide he's ever had... my fishing ego hurts today.

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

Have a beer. I'm sure he understands. Think of a failsafe trip to put him on some fish next go around and keep him in your corner. Sounds like you're doing something right given he's been out with you 4 times. That's fishing. Keep working that water. Never know what the next cast brings. Fish it like it's your last.

Where did you put in FLY? Right now the girls are beat up and the boys are guarding fry. Its a tough time. The chick, even more so than the nasty James; the bite is tidal driven. In my experience.

"Hey Bud, you wont have to hold the opponent to 17 points anymore."

Eagles Landing in the reservoir. The bite isn't tidal in the reservoir. I'm not worried about the bass, we were after bowfin and pickerel and they wouldn't cooperate.

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

Only decent report I've heard lately was from kayakers fishing real skinny water behind some of the developments on Anastasia Is. So I "explored the neighborhood" yesterday (something I say I'll do, but almost never actually do)...the far upper reaches of an unnamed creek on the east side of the Matanzas River (ICW) that looks good on the aerial photo. Found some good looking water and lots of baitfish but it was high tide (I wanted to make sure I wouldn't get stuck) and that was apparently the wrong tide...one slightly undersized red.

So I've mentioned before there is a shallow tidal cove across the street from my house...bottom elevation is probably +1 to + 2...very very soft, silt/mud bottom (not wadable) with a few oyster clumps. When I got back, I went out on the porch and had a cup of coffee with my wife. She says, is that an otter? or a cormorant? I looked up and it was a slot red, dorsal and tail fins exposed, in about 6 inches of water chasing bait on the outgoing. Oh well.

Fished Weldon, NC today on the Roanoke River in the "Striped Bass Capital of the World." 50-100 fish days are common here. Getting skunked is most definitely not. We staved off the skunk with a single fish, but a good one at 24 inches, on fly. One guide I talked to said the low water releases have caused the bite to slow the last few days and this was one of the worst days he's ever had here. To put it in perspective, they landed 8 this morning and another 15 in the afternoon. Lots of fish are the norm. I'd try it again once but it certainly didn't live up to expectations. That is a seriously crowded piece of water too. Not exactly my cup of tea.

On the positive side, I received a text about bull drum in shallow water on some flats in the Bay. I am checking out a few areas tomorrow and hoping for more success. Just one redfish on the fly will make me a happy man.

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

Fisherman's Island shoals

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

I'm sure they are there. I got invited to go out with Chris Newsome earlier this week, location undisclosed to me. Had to decline due to guiding. He landed five very large fish, including one on fly.

We fished Poquoson flats today and it's a good looking spot. Wind kicked our ass. One 16 inch striper came to hand.

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

I went out with Chris the summer before last. He seemed to know his stuff. We got into a bunch of blues but not much else that day. Not for a lack of effort.

804

I run into him multiple times a year around here. He's the man for light tackle angling in this area. Always makes me feel good when I see him nosing around the same stuff I'm nosing around, but I'd love to be a fly in his bait bucket for a week or two to see the places he goes that I don't see. Nice guy, too.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

I fished there once, also less than impressed by the crowd, and we went after the season was closed for keeping fish, but still a big crowd. I struggled, frankly, and though I fished two full days, only caught a couple and had to use bait to do that. Had a friend who'd rent a house there on the river every year and guide for them. They'd have a hundred before lunch some days. When he came back, he couldn't shake hands for a couple of weeks because of the numbers of fish he was handling day after day. Crowd was a turn-off I decided not to repeat.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Well insurance was worth every penny. Damages to the motor totaled my entire boat. Deciding what to do now as far as buying the hull back. Might buy it back and flip the hull and trailer with no power.

(add if applicable) /s

yes it is, said the guy who has paid the price one time for not having it.

yeah big props to progressive they took awhile but that had a lot to do with the logistics of the incident being in FL and the boat getting towed back to SC. They give you agreed value insurance, really not a ton of questions asked the adjuster was knowledgeable and went and took one look at the power head and totaled it.

I started shopping for boats yesterday....fuck they just get more expensive.

(add if applicable) /s

were you happy enough with the Action Craft to go that route again?

I love that boat but I'm thinking of going with more of a bay boat to expand my range a bit. My biggest complaint after running through some of the passes in Florida is that it is wet. It cuts chop well and runs in rough stuff comfortably but with no spray rails you end up taking quite a bit of that spray to the chest. Only other complaint is that it was really heavy and poling was not easy. The quality was top notch though most solid 26 year old boat I've been around I'm definitely considering the ACE and the Bay but they're generally out of my price range.

That being said I did end up buying the hull back from insurance. Repowering it is an option but to get full coverage I need to put a new motor on it, my agent said I won't be able to get full coverage through them if I get a used motor or rebuild the power head.

(add if applicable) /s

Interested to see what bay boat you end up with. I definitely love the versatility of them.

I'm interested as well...

(add if applicable) /s

I've spent a lot of time in my fishing buddy's early 2000's 1900 Pathfinder with a Yamaha 115 4 stroke. It's a real nice pairing. You can get it into pretty skinny water; get on the front and work shorelines and oyster bars with a trolling motor; and it I think it handles a chop quite well.

I've road in a 2200 quite a bit I was less than impressed with the ride comfort through bigger chop, then again I wasn't driving. Definitely dry though.

Still have some I'm looking at taking out. Tidewater and Bullsbay are what I'm looking at right now it'll be awhile before I can really have any real opinions though.

(add if applicable) /s

good luck!

Got my out the door prices back on a few boats this week. Going to check out Tidewater this weekend. Sea Pro 228 is the far and away leader right now. The NAP boat is a little under powered with a 150 but the build quality is phenomenal no shortcuts, super clean, electrical organized. It really didn't even come out to much more than the Bulls Bay did and top deck design and finish quality are not even close.

(add if applicable) /s

Won't bore with detail (applause), but trip to obx was mixed. Cold front and high wind first two days. Mix of fish Monday, one puffer, one mullet, two baby flounder, one big pigfish (never seen one in surf) and a few tiny snapper blues. One mullet Tuesday. One. Both days at the Point, tried both sides, point being closed off. Wed we stayed north as close to Oregon Inlet as we could get from ramp 4. Caught several bluefish, nothing over a pound, maybe. All on mullet in extremely rough and discolored surf. Thursday, went back there because several locals declared it a good place for a drum. The blues were bigger, up to a couple of pounds, on average, with a couple a bit bigger. Bite every cast. Every one. Constant action and lost track of how many caught before we'd had enough. Tried metal both days with nada result. Surf was so roiled, I wasn't surprised. My arthritic knees precluded any prolonged wading stuff anyway, and I struggled as it was to get out far enough with my surf gear.
We've been friends since VT, almost 50 years ago, so friendship and fellowship was the goal, and we achieved it. Other than Monday, the beach was nice to be on and we had enough fun to make it worth the trip. And, I learned all about the sputnik sinker. Must have for the water we were fishing. Great invention.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Did you get to see the beached whale? It's getting rough

Nope. Saw no whale.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Had a crap week, and some time to kill on Friday evening, and a cup of worms, so I decided to hit a fresh water pond that I wasn't really sure about. County property in the middle of a secluded park. It sees it's most action during cross country season. Let's give it a shot. Well, I assume they stock the thing. Never had so much fun putting my thumb in a basses mouth. From 6" to 2 lbs, was just hitting em left and right. Very nice way to end the week.

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

Caught the biggest crappie I've ever caught, 2 lbs 7 oz, in a pond on the golf course at Penn Park in Charlottesville in December one year. No golfers on the course, and somebody still ran us off when they saw us, but we caught bass up to three lbs as well.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Sounds like the crap week was turned into a pretty good week. Nice work, glad u scored.

Pain is Temporary, Chicks Dig Scars
Glory is Forever, Let's Go Hokies!!

Finally got to Naples today after being sick the whole 15 hour drive it was a relief to get out here finally. Fished for 2 hours on the gulf side to no avail tried a bucket of different baits had bunches of bites on the doa shrimp but nothing that could get the hook in it's mouth yet. Had one get eaten in half and almost come to hand. Way to windy to fly fish yet it was a stiff 20-30 out of the west causing the surf to be a bit foggy as well. Going to hit the beach at first light to see what I can do going to go smaller with gulp and small shrimp flies to just get the skunk off my back and into some fish. All else fails out the cast net will come and the circle hooks will tell me what we're facing.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Broke the skunk this morning on a nice jack. Wind is nuts again today so fly fishing has been tough. Lost the one spoon I brought on a mackerel will be going to get more spoons for the Spanish mackerel for next time. Saw tarpon rolling which was a first which was cool as hell

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Update 2.0 girlfriend caught a mackerel in a blitz and a big lady fish which was awesome to watch her fight it. I finally caught a snook and preceeded to drop it before I could get a photo the bastard was far stronger than I thought.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Saw tarpon rolling

Warning- Filter lost.

"Look at this... This is just spectacular.... These people are losing their minds"

FREE THE "STICK IT IN" CHANT!!!

Headed offshore out of Oregon Inlet on Tuesday and looking forward to some mahi & tuna according to the fishing reports.

Almost as exciting is that I'm moving to Norfolk in June and am looking forward to getting back into kayak fishing after several years.

My friend pulled in 20lbs of Mahi Mahi in the same location last week =)

Love me some mani to eat!

WTF is Mani?!

/s

"Hey Bud, you wont have to hold the opponent to 17 points anymore."

North wind at 11 and sunny. You guys should have excellent weather if that forecast holds.

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

The forecast looks excellent. My dad and I are pumped!

Mahi are extremely thick offshore right now from every report I've gotten.

(add if applicable) /s

The fishing report from yesterday showed mani stacked like wood on the docks. We're both bringing our fly rods and hoping for some good action.

Had bad-ish luck near Oregon Inlet yesterday. We pulled in a skate and a handful of bait fish over hours of fishing. The biggest thing I got out of that trip was 2nd degree burns. Can't wait to go back though, I love surf fishing =D

Edit: Our bloodworms kept getting stripped, even holding the rods. Friend thinks it was flounder being cute but it was probably just small fish stealing our bait.

Our bloodworms kept getting stripped, even holding the rods. Friend thinks it was flounder being cute but it was probably just small fish stealing our bait.

Crabs most likely. Highly doubt it was a flounder as they are a fish that suck a bait in.

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

We had bloodworms but never used them. We were hoping for more serious fish like a drum or trout, but settled for the bluefish. Caught almost all fish of all sorts on cut mullet, but a couple of pan fish on shrimp. Fishbites were unproductive for us all week.
As for the second degree burns, I think I out did you there. My lower lip got so wind/sun burned I am eating soup without spices and avoiding appearing in public lest someone thinks I'm rotting away. All week, one of our guys did catch two flounder so small you could have put them in your wallet or read the newspaper through them, but between the tiny sand perch and baby sea mullet, it was tough to keep any bait on for long. We were as close to Oregon Inlet as they let you drive (unless, of course, you have a commercial fisherman's license, in which case you seem to be able to go pretty much where you please even fishing with hook and line in the surf like the rest of us) coming off of ramp 4 our last couple of days which is where we got into the bluefish.
Good luck offshore. The fish we saw on the offshore boats were pretty nice. One tuna was about 150, and most seemed to do pretty well.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Try fishbites next time. They stay on the hook a lot better and longer than natural baits.

I'm a fishbites guy, but we used them off and on the first three days with no result at all. Nada.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Interesting, I haven't messed with them in the surf really cause I'm either drum fishing or throwing lures.

Yeah, on Monday with the absurd wind and waves, we were fishing for everything and/or anything and tried everything we had. Fishbites were never bitten, that we knew of anyway.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Well went out with a guide from Naples today for snook and had a blast. Wind has and still is terrible we've had 20 sustained all day so surf fishing has been unproductive as it gets. The guide out us on plenty of big snook we failed to land the two huge ones unfortunately but got good looks. Had a huge school of monster Jack's come in though and my girlfriend got ahold of a big one we estimated around 10 pounds and it took all of 5 minutes to bring it to hand but I had the gopro on for it all. I caught the biggest bluefish I've ever caught somewhere around 7 pounds which was a blast. End of the day I'd guess around 30 snook, 3 nice red drum, a few catfish, a bluefish and an uncountable number of big snapper. The drum we're all nice sized and put up good fights. Now all I need is the rain and wind to leave us be so I can get the fly tackle out.
Will add photos when cell service allows

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Well done. You caught all of those fish due to the hat you're wearing...

Also, based on your IG post, I think the term "girlfriend" needs to be updated.

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

Congrats on the upcoming ring ceremony!

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

Thanks guys! Been a good few days with my now fiance. The guided trip was super fun and the hats been awesome the guide even remarked on it.
Surf has been brutal with the wind and waves fishing has been crap but we have persevered and snagged a few snook before the blacktips showed up and cleaned the beach up it seems. Mother nature has a way of making the surf look like chocolate milk every time I'm at the beach. Switched from DOA to zman baits since plastics are all that's working and they last atleast. But the surf has made it all brutal to mess with lots of catsing all day for three snook. Hoping it clears some tomorrow to make it more productive.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Its time for "Why is the bride smiling and why is the groom smiling joke"!

Glad you are catching fish!

"Hey Bud, you wont have to hold the opponent to 17 points anymore."

Holy Cow!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Grill It!

"Hey Bud, you wont have to hold the opponent to 17 points anymore."

That is a monster.

Grill it my ass. Ya gotta let her go, but what an 'eye.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Ya gotta let her go,

I get that since eyes scatter their eggs

"Hey Bud, you wont have to hold the opponent to 17 points anymore."

That's some prodigious brood stock there.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Went out of Oregon Inlet yesterday. Took about 2 hours to the fishing grounds and then the mate got the spread set. Within 20 minutes we've got 3 fish on the line at once and pull in two yellowfin and a large bull dorado within seconds of each other, and a 3rd yellowfin right behind that. Not a bad start. And then nothing for 3 hours. What yellowfin were being hooked up were almost immediately getting sharked and the dolphin disappeared when the wind changed directions and scattered the grass. Trolled for about 3 hours until the Capt. heard the kings were biting a bit further North so we trolled up that direction and within an hour we had our limit of 18. Went back for the dolphin and tuna but got nothing for the rest of the day. Overall a great trip and the Fintastic was a good boat.

Headed to Belize on Saturday and hoping for some bonefish/permit down there on my fly rod.

Oh cool you cleaned up on kings, got some nice dorado and yellowfin? And you're headed to Belize to flyfish? Well I'm sitting at work and Saturday I'm gonna clean my house.

(add if applicable) /s

Be sure to do a good job

LOL

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

Strong start of posting on the fishing thread! Glad you had a good trip and good luck in belize. Pictures are always encouraged.

Headed to Belize on Saturday and hoping for some bonefish/permit down there on my fly rod.

You make a very seasoned traveler jealous

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

Three weeks until beach trip #1 of the year. Thinking of putting braid on my surf spinning outfits rather than the mono I've been using. Any suggestions on brand and line size? I'm thinking 30# but have zero experience with the different brands available.

Also, I'm considering purchasing another surf spinning outfit. Above in this thread it was pointed out that my Penn Fierce II outfits aren't necessarily the best quality. Any suggestions in the sub $250 range (limited I know)? Looking for something with good value not necessarily the top of the line. I'm thinking I want something longer than the 9'-10' I have now. Is that wise?

Thanks!

I'm a huge fan of Suffix 832 but it's mostly been relegated to freshwater. I've never had what I consider a "line based" failure while I've seen some other brands snap off while casting a lure or fighting a fish. Make sure to bone up on your knots as binding knots like the clinch will not hold with braid. I'm a big fan of the palomar for direct to hook or the loop knot/rapala knot for topwater. Also uni to uni is good for leaders and backing.

I just set up my son's rod with that 832 braid and was immediately envious. We've only been out with it a few times, but I love it. I'll probably switch over my other rods from the spiderwire stealth at the next opportunity.

Hokie fan | W&M grad

Been using a friends rod with 832 on it it's been so nice I'll be getting one with it soon been loving it fishing for snook and Jack's and drum.

That said you def gotta learn a whole new batch of knots, I've gotten damn good at tying the albrighton knot for flouro leaders to braid.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Crazy Alberto knot to tie the braid to the leader has been stronger for me than my uni to uni.

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

Holy hell that knot is sexy when you're 8 bourbons deep.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aXjagwdjAhg

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

I've been meaning to learn it. It's supposed to be a lot better if you have your leader going back through your guides than the double uni.

I'm eventually going to get all y'all converted...and I tie mine with 5 wraps for inshore light tackle (15-20 lb braid to 20-25 lb flouro), with no knot failures for what, almost a decade?

edit: the tag end of the flouro will occasionally hang on the tip ferrule on the retrieve (never on the cast) if you don't trim it close enough

the improved Albright (and the other names it's known by) and that simple no-name loop (https://www.thekeyplay.com/comment/reply/15470/640925) that apparently Ifish and I both use, is about all you need for light tackle artificials.

I had two problems with this knot, you mentioned 1. 2 is that it slipped on me twice after doing that. I had attached this knot to my pick up and pulled on it to test it was rock solid. The first time it came up through the eyes on a retrieve the knot failed the next cast. Went back to uni to uni.

(add if applicable) /s

If that happened to me, I would probably do that as well. confidence is everything in fishing.

my most common challenge in tying that knot is inadvertently having the flouro twist when I switch hands and I wind up with an improperly tied knot. but it also slips when I pull/pop it to test the knot with my hands before tying the lure, so I have avoided issues during actual use.

edit: my intro to the knot was long ago (an aussie-made video done with different diameter rope in the demo...that I can't find) and at that time the person called it an improved or modified Albright. in this video, the knot I tie is called the Alberto knot. if I don't twist the flouro over itself under the double wrap, it has been bullet proof.

http://www.thefisherman.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=page.knotsteps&Knot_ID=...

I'll get it figured out eventually. It's way smaller than a uni to uni when tying 70-100lb fluro to braid.

(add if applicable) /s

years ago, I was at a coordination meeting between FL FWC and Ga DNR leadership and they gave us a tour of their then new Fishing Ed center in Perry (they should have put it near Atlanta). We got to talking about fishing and I demo'd that knot. They were all taking notes and practicing because it was small, easy to tie, and most of all, didn't require super glue...the standard at the time when tying braid.

Yeah I looked at it just now. It does look very simple and will be helpful when I need long leaders for jigging or surfcasting. My double uni hasn't failed when surfcasting mono to mono but have had issues with braid to mono on my inshore if I get the knot through the guides too much.

I've had no issues with the loop to loop knot for smaller stuff, but have found that it does have a tendency to be more likely to break if something goes wrong casting heavy stuff, so a better knot is needed for that. What breaks is always the mono loop at the braid, but it's only happened a couple of times to me, and the wrap-up that caused it both times may have broken it off at the lure knot anyway. I have decided a while back to not use braid inshore. Just don't need it, don't like it, and can do pretty much anything I need inshore on mono. Arguments have been had about this, but I won't change that approach until I'm given enough reason to do so, and so far, it hasn't happened. Outcast me regularly, catch more fish than I do regularly and I'll be thinking about it seriously, though.

I do have braid on my surfcasting rigs, with no leaders to the braid because I'm pretty much always using bait and don't feel it is necessary in surf conditions, but if I'm tossing lures, it's either mono or braid with leader.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Try the FG knot for braid to fluoro. Think Chinese finger trap. I've never had an issue with it. It's a bitch to tie in the wind, but damn is it skinny and strong as hell. Gets through the guides really well if you're as lazy as I am and give yourself enough leader to not have to re-tie while on the water.

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"Look at this... This is just spectacular.... These people are losing their minds"

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Been hitting the beaches hard the last few days and fishing has really picked up, finally got a snook on the fly praise heebus. That said water is Crystal clear and the bastards are getting pickier but bluefish and specks have entered the game as well. Been killing it with 3 and 4 inch pilchard colored swim baits but I'm tempted to go to curly tails with trout in the waters now. Any advice on fighting crystal clear waters we had it figured out in the murky chop but the clearing water has changed things.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

If it's a lot of trout go for 10 lb flouro leader and a longer leader. Other general suggestions lightest jighead you can get away with, slow down retrieve, the lure with the best movement (hence gulp works better in murkier water because of scent but not as good in clear water). Don't have too much experience with crystal clear water but figured I throw stuff out there.

not my style but free-lining live bait might do it for you

trout shouldn't care

They were taking my 1/4 ounce jighead with a 3 inch pilchard mullet swimbait. I brought some curly tails but don't wanna drop the swimbait since everything else is going after it as well. Pulled in trout, drum, Jack's, mackerel, lots of snook, lady fish, bluefish and I thinks that's it thus far. Only thing left on my list is a Spanish mackerel and a tarpon

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

3rdGen made me a firm believer in Gulp shrimp for trout, and I see no reason they wouldn't work for you there, even in clear water. Light jig head, but trout like the motion and erratic behavior of those shrimp. Another good bait in clear water would be either a Gulp jerk shad or Zoom Fluke on a jig head, or even weightless, Texas rigged on an offset worm hook and erratically retrieved, you still wouldn't be ruling out those other fish. Bluefish will destroy either bait, but that's the price.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Does anyone happen to know at what flow rates the new river is wadable? I have the websites bookmarked but I can't recall from years past what rates are safe and which are probably best left to the boats. Trying to decide if I should take my 6 weight out for smallmouth in the morning or head up to Little Stony after native trout.

Thanks!

Not now!

"Hey Bud, you wont have to hold the opponent to 17 points anymore."

Which section are you referring to? It is very close to wadeable above Claytor Lake. I guided Saturday, water is still up a bit yet for it to be on fire but in a few days it should be. The islands above the i77 bridge are a great place to wade this time of year.

Did you fish Little Stony? I hiked and picked around in it yesterday. Managed two on probably 8 eats. So many bugs hatching. I think the water is too high for them to consistently eat a dry and they are probably gorging themselves on nymphs.

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

South west Florida trip was phenomenal last day got my big snook and also got to shoot my shot at a huge tarpon will post a full report once home.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Another less than stellar trip for me yesterday with my trout neighbor, Paul. Two dink stripers, a dink croaker (first of the year) and two trout, one a dink, one 14" or so. Trout on topwater, all else on Gulp shrimp. Mobjack Bay is waking slowly this year.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Alright. I'm narrowed down to two boats. If you've been in either please let me know.

Sea Pro 228 150 Zuke
-Pros: Better finish quality. Deck design is well thought out. Bigger rear deck
-Cons: boat is rated for a 250.....100hp under powered

Tidewater 2110 Baymax 150 Yam
-Pros: Super wide beam at bow. Fully loaded for ~same price as base Sea Pro. Tunnel Hull
-Cons: Less attention to detail.

I'm taking both of them for a drive waiting for the 228 to get shipped to my dealer here.

(add if applicable) /s

The guide we went with in florida was using a 22 foot seapro I think it was the baymax and it was phenomenal. Beautiful boat handles so smoothly and sits well with a terrova on the front. It was so nice my fiance now wants me to get one for the bay back here. Never thought I would have to be the voice of reason on buying a boat one day.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Thanks, that's the test drive I'm most interested in. Do you know what he had strapped on the back?

(add if applicable) /s

He had a 250 mercury on it and it would fly. He kept it clean as a whistle and it showed it was very impressive for what felt like a minimalistic setup on the outside it was very nice inside with the livewell and nice storage. The ride was smooth as it gets even in the choppier stuff. Made me want to get one badly.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Well lets find a dealership and get a group buy discount lol

(add if applicable) /s

If I wasnt in the middle of mortgaging my soul building this house I would be down. I'm gonna begin looking around and buy in a few years. Only need something in the 19-22 foot range and the saltwater style washdown look is what were looking for, for fresh and saltwater stuff. Gonna take a long time thinking on it first I'll be interested to see what you stick with and how it works out.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Full report time with pictures.
Trip to the naples area in florida was well worth it my arms still sore from fishing all day 6 days in a row and now I have a wedding to plan. First half of the week the wind was brutal, 20-30 mph sustained out of the southwest which turned the gulf into an ocean with 2-3 foot chop and whitecaps. On the contrary it made the fishing simpler with limited visibility it made the fish eat all sorts of artificals like crazy. We put easily 35 fish on the shore the first day just chucking DOA baits and gulp swimbaits in the pilchard color. Any and all artificials produced good sized fish from Jacks to mackerel.
Mondays guided trip was a blast the captain was young but very knowledgeable and put us on the fish big time. Caught piles of snook and snapper and both my fiance and I lost two very very big snook. Hers threw the hook right at the boat so we atleast got a good look and a safe release. Mine however gave me a fight for the ages stripping and running like a mad man before going under some mangroves and shaking the hook free. The big snook are powerhouses is all I have to say. Then at the dire ends of the guided trip a school of huge jacks showed up feeding on the surface and my fiance managed to get a threadfin right in the mix and after a solid couple laps around the boat and 5 minutes later she had a big jack in hand.
Tuesday and Wednesday continued the windy and murky conditions and fishing slowly began to wane as the water started to clear and drop as the wind kept switching around and letting the water slowly clear. We finally made a tackle run to Marcos Island to get food and some tackle as our DOA collection didnt last long with all the toothy guys in the surf we needed artificials badly. Long story short marcos Island has no good tackle shops anywhere near the water where we had to dock so we had to go to a crap ass west marine that didnt even have most decent stuff. Luckily they had DOA and more importantly they had Zman swimbaits which were the ticket. 3/8 gotcha head and a 3 or 4 inch swimbait in mullet or pilchard color was the ticket and I didnt switch from it the rest of the week cast way out then reeled slowly in produced fish after fish. No other bait came close and every fish out there would hit it ladyfish in particular loved it.
By Wednesday afternoon the wind switched to the east and the surf calmed and started to clear. Managed a good pile of fish on wednesday with the clearing surf everything was in there. We caught snook, nice sized red drum, a couple nice speckled trout, ladyfish, jacks, and a mackerel. By thursday morning it was crystal clear and the fish then became super picky and would hardly eat any baits. Still managed to snag some jacks and ladyfish but the snook got harder and harder to catch as the day wained. Tried going back to weightless DOA shrimp and anything minimalistic to try and fool snook but nothing worked. With the wind and surf finally died down I picked up the fly tackle finally and seriously went to work hiking miles on miles throwing every fly I had at the cruising snook but only got one eat after half a day of running and gunning from shore. Got him to eat a tan mule driver flyguy had tied for me which drew lots of attention from fish but I couldnt ever get them to eat it no matter whether I tried slowing the retrieve or picking it up nothing worked unfortunately. Everyone I talked to fishing that stuff said the same that they couldnt get the snook to eat with so much bait around they didnt have much reason to it seems bait was everywhere thick as thieves. Flyguys flies he tied for me all looked great and were presented to the best of my ability but thats why they call it fishing I guess. Cant thank flyguy enough for all the baits they were great.
Friday came around much to my dismay the wind stayed out of the east so I dropped all the artificials and grabbed my castnets in search of something I felt the snook couldnt turn down. Spent a few hours learning the baitfish patterns before I finally figured out how to get the threadfin herring consistently from shore which was a bitch without a boat but patience put a good few in range. Then the real agony followed. We put countless perfectly placed wounded big herring in the trough only to be rejected time after time it was absurd how picky the snook were but a few big jacks still came in and ate to keep us occupied. We managed 3 snook all morning and day with live bait one was decent sized but nothing big. And as if the snook gods were listening the wind switched back out of the southwest in the afternoon which fogged up the surf and with that I decided to dump the live bait and go on one last run and gun trip down the island. On my way down I noticed pods of snook up and down and they were right in the waves and eating so I kept on chucking the zman swimbait. Finally with not much of a fishable tide left I hooked into my biggest snook and after a long debacle in the surf landed him got a video on the gopro and sent him on his way. After losing countless pigs in the surf it felt good to stick one all the way finally. Ended the trip with one more snook that was nice but the big guy was a big bit of relief at around 30 inches I was satisfied enough to go home.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Amazing stuff. Someday I am going to make the Florida run and cross some fish off my list.

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

Thats what this trip was for me I had a list in my head of stuff I wanted to snag while I was there to try and get stuff checked off my list so next time I can focus more on the elite on my list. I have piles of pictures of the other stuff I got like the bluefish, red drum, ladyfish, jacks, mangrove snapper, mackerel you name it it was there even got a mini pompano as well. Next time down there I'll be aiming for tarpon and grouper since I didnt have the stuff to try and tackle those this round. We almost went to go for the goliath grouper but instead spent the slack tide getting more bait for the snook and jacks.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

You're welcome. Sounds like you had one heck of a trip with a nice mixed bag of fish!

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

I had my 7 weight fly line completely die on me unfortunately the core came out of the fly line as I was chucking a mule driver at the tarpon. Gonna have to get some more red drum line for it that stuffs the best line I've used on it. Gonna try and figure out the saltwater fly game back here in the mobjack this summer weather permitting my little jon boat cant handle heavy stuff.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

What brand of line was it?

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

Rio Redfish 8 weight line. Its the original spool of line I got for it 2 years ago so its lasted a good bit of abuse. The tear is about 25 feet up the line where the core is exposed for a few feet. Didnt notice it till I was stripping alot of line trying to reach the tarpon when I felt it.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Doesn't surprise me but if a line lasts 2-3 years, I'm happy with it. Rio's outer coatings are known to be soft as hell and come apart easily.

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

Thats all that happened so I assumed it was original wear and tear so I wasnt too bent on it, just glad the tarpon didnt eat the fly and break my rod and all. Couldnt find any redfish line for my 6 wt so I got the outbound series of rio line and its not quite like the redfish so I have a few spools of that to order anyway.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

The outbound is a super overloaded line. So much so that I throw the 8 weight version on my 10. I think it's too much, but that's just me. I do throw a 7 weight redfish on my 6 without a problem

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

I got the 6 weight outbound for my kraken and the colton 6 weight and its not too bad just feels like you said way overweight compared to the redfish which casts much smoother I've found. Might put the 7 weight redfish on my 6 weight kraken reel I know it can handle it with the fast tradewinds XS rod

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Nice fish man! Good the hear you enjoyed our fishing! Love to see our snook show up in size like that last pic from the beach. Got to put Boca Grande on your list for tarpon time one year to go with that!

You are right though, Marco doesnt have a decent bait and tackle shop. The best one is the little dinky store at caxambas pass on the far south end, and it's teeny.

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I'm contemplating quitting my day job moving to marcos Island and opening up a dockside tackle shop and part time guiding gig and when seasons slow doing electrical work for myself. Sounds much better. Were looking at going back next year or the following year and targeting smaller tarpon in the mangroves and everglades before we think about hitting a bigger one. Also really itching to go after the grouper and other offshore reef fish like king mackerel.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Go down there and spend a couple months, then decide. Other than fishing, I can't think of any good reason for someone under 60 wanting to live in SWFL.

I loved the fishing in Marco but I don't think I could live down there until I'm older. For now South Ft Myers is a happy medium. Still close enough to get to Marco and launch in the AM far enough away that I'm not only surrounded by tourists and retirees.

That being said....if you do that and need a had....hit me up also cause I've wanted to do that my entire life just haven't had the balls to quit my day job.

(add if applicable) /s

Guiding was the best job I've ever had, and the only job I've ever had that I didn't basically hate having to do. It ain't a great living, and probably most guides have a day job either all of part of the time they guide, but it is a great job if you're suited for it. It isn't an easy job, that's for sure, and where I lived and guided, it isn't a year 'round gig, but I appreciated the down time so I could get out and fish for the things I liked in the winter (walleye) that I couldn't sell to enough clients to justify the effort. And while I was pulling two 10 foot oars and rowing against the New River current all day, dealing with the clients was the real work, and the real reward.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Its always been a serious and real interest to me but I've gotten far enough into my field that I'm gonna stick with it till it burns me out atleast then assess my options or just go do work for myself and setup a personal company. Guess as with anything when the moneys stable and good its harder to walk away for an unknown I guess.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

You can always guide on the side to start with! It is difficult to immediately go full time in guiding. I still haven't reached "full time" after 9 years

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

I'll have to buy you and fish a drink sometimes and talk about it some I was thinking if I go that way it would be a part time gig anyway since I can make good money doing other stuff as well it would be something to help balance my time but thats a whole nother thing. I've got the access to good places and with some refinement on techniques I feel its doable just need a better boat and tackle.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

A lot is in the boat, but boats don't catch fish, and if you're guiding, you have to produce. Consistently, day after day. I was lucky to be able to quit my day job after a couple of years working for an outfitter and starting my own business. Building a client list wasn't easy, but with help from other guides and friends, I started pretty strong and was able to keep from having to do anything else. It helped that the New River was starting to get famous and it helped that when I started guiding, I had almost 30 years of experience fishing for smallmouth on the James and the New. I still needed help with tackle and baits, but my boat was the cornerstone of my business. I fished with lots of good anglers, but they didn't have the boat to do what I could do, and while the guiding biz on the New has gotten big, it wasn't when I started and I got my share of the pie, so to speak, from serious anglers wanting access and conveyance as much as my experience and local knowledge. Not to mention the seriously sumptuous lunches I was known for.
And as for that drink, I'm game. Get Flyguy down here on the Mobjack and we can give you the lowdown.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

That's how the mrs. and I do it. Live in Estero (s. Ft myers) and commute south. She's in Naples and I'm on Marco, so about an hour for both, depending on the day. Makes things a hell of a lot easier most of the time.

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"Look at this... This is just spectacular.... These people are losing their minds"

FREE THE "STICK IT IN" CHANT!!!

Yupp Estero is exactly where I was hanging out. Saw some stuff at Tiki bar I won't ever forget.

(add if applicable) /s

Great work man! Impressive stuff from the beach. I've been to Sanibel Island (north of Keewaydin) in the past. What were you keying in on from the surf to figure out where to fish from the surf? From what I remember of Sanibel it was pretty uniform and flat.

We werent really keyed on anything till the water cleared and surf calmed. Mostly I was looking for any kind of depth change close enough to cast to like sandbars and rip current holes in the sandbars. The big schools of jacks were just out of my fly casting length unfortunately but occasionally would rush the bait on the shore and we could hit them with baits. We found a spot where the sandbar came all the way to the beach and that was a hotspot on a high outgoing tide. Low tide was when I would go nap at the house as at low tide the fish would up and leave to outside the main bar at low tide. The snook were all over the beach either in pairs or small schools and you just had to keep an eye on the breakers since they would be directly in the breakers and it was tricky in the afternoon glare to spot them from the beach. The swim bait made it easy to just chuck and pray if you didnt see anything obvious. We caught a bunch of nice red drum just hopping the swimbait slowly along the bottom. Heck I caught one just leaving it right on the bottom while I was helping unhook a fish and undo a braid knot and when I picked it up had a nice drum on.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

And here I thought you only caught snook in the mangroves!

"Hey Bud, you wont have to hold the opponent to 17 points anymore."

They rush the beaches pretty hard especially in the morning. The weather never cooperated with us but if you can get a boat and pinch them between the shore and sight fish em you can pick out some really big beach snook

(add if applicable) /s

Fish a moving tide and youll find them right in the breakers in groups. Theyre really picky but if you time it right mornings and evenings can produce good fish.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Caught many, many snook in the troughs of brevard county, fl using artificials and live bait. Theyre there, moving tide to high tide. Lots of fun... and meals.

Pain is Temporary, Chicks Dig Scars
Glory is Forever, Let's Go Hokies!!

With a nice weather day and no plans, I met up with my Maryland buddies to head to Ocean City to fool around the the tailor bluefish in hopes that the gators would show up. We met at Sandy Point State Park in Annapolis at 7AM and then drove the remaining hour and forty five to Ocean City. We arrived at the tail end of incoming tide. The bluefish were not in full blitz mode. However, we had a steady pick with sizes ranging from perfect live bait size (10-11 inchers) which we threw back up to about 21 inches.

The bite continued through the slack tide. Gotcha plugs were most productive. However Tuna managed some nicer sized blues on a tan-white SP Minnow dragged against the tide. When the tide started to suck back out, the bite died. We decided to pack up and head to the inlet. Unfortunately, OC was having it's "Cruisin" weekend and the Inlet parking area was closed. With the buffet not opening until 4:00PM, we had to kill a couple of hours and didn't feel like driving to Delaware. Instead, we headed down to Assateague Island to fish the back bay in hopes for some white perch or trout. Instead, I got a nap, and the boys managed a stingray, a small rockfish, and a ton of blue crabs including some sponge crabs which wanted to eat their grass shrimp.

At 3:30, we headed back to OCMD for The Bonfire Buffet. I am not a buffet guy, but my buddies love them. So after being full after two plates, I sat for an hour as I watched them decimate crab legs, shrimp, and mussels. Once the check was settled, we headed back to the bridge for the evening incoming.

At this point, we had 20 of our 30 bluefish three person limit, and I figured given the tides and what happened the last trip, we would knock out the last 10 pretty quickly. Instead, we had some frustration. The incoming tide and steady south wind started to bring in mud and sea lettuce. I managed two nice fish quickly and then completely lost my mojo. After about an hour or so of nothing, birds started working to our right. We ran over and found a large school of shad popping with some bluefish mixed in. Tuna got the big fish of the night with a 24 inch blue on his plug, and I caught one more (we ended up with 27 of our 30 and a half dozen released fish between the 3 of us) before the shad took over. You couldn't get a bait through the hickory shad to the blues. After catching 10 or so each, a small shark (maybe 10 pounds) swam in looking for an easy meal. That cleared the shad out and sent us home. I got home at 1:00AM last night, and I am sore as hell today. I need to get in better gotcha plug shape.

In other news, there was an absurd cobia bite from Hatteras into the Bay yesterday. Even former VT WR Charley Meyer got into a fish. It is on, gentlemen.

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

Nice! They caught a few flounder in the Assawoman yesterday as well. I'm gonna have to get up with you at some point. I live on the east side of Salisbury..........and work in Cambridge.

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

Nice. My buddies are all about catching flounder, and every flounder I have ever caught has been a happy accident. That will probably be it for heading down there until the fall. It is cobia time!

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

Fall down here is really nice. Slows down post-tourons, weather is crisp, and best of all...it's football season!!!

To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
@BuryHokie #ThanksFrank

I have spent many a November and December night catching schoolie striped bass under the Christmas lights under that bridge. When I started, the surf fishing for rockfish on Assateague Island was great that time of year, but the late fall bite has evaporated.

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

Guided on the North Anna today. One of the lower holes is even bigger and it was filled with 50-60 rolling gar, all chasing a few big females. We saw three bowfin. Rarely I see them and it is only one. Jenn, the client was able to put the purple woolly bugger in its face and correctly fought and landed it for her first fish on the fly. The fish was so strong is nearly straightened the hook but luckily it held. Not bad! It felt great from my side of things.

She was throwing flies for the bluegill two more bigger bowfin swam up. She told me to cast for them, so I did. Hooked a 5 pounder literally setting the fly in its face as the fish stuck his head out from under a log. My only option was to trout set. That doesn't work on fish with hard enough mouths to straighten hooks. One run and he spit it. Same thing happened with the second fish. Pro tip, if you are fly fishing for anything other than trout, STRIP SET!

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

FYI- for you surf fishing guys, an 81.3 pound cobia was landed off the beach south of Cape Hatteras last night.

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

Damn, that is a big fish.

Great googly moogly what a fish!

Couldn't have said it better myself.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Boats are seeing 80-90 fish a day and hooking and landing 20 off of Hatteras. I may try to shoot down there next week, but I also got a good redfish report. If the weather is nice, I'd love to play in the ocean with the cobia but my puppy drum on fly addiction....

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

Where are the red fish reports coming from? Hatteras as well?

804

There are tons of big drum at the fisherman's island shoals (north end of the Bay Bridge Tunnel) too.

There are a ton of cobia showing on top in the Bay too. Very few folks are targeting them because it is catch and release only until June 1.

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

Hopefully we'll be lonely out there next week. Starting to get a bit excited about our coming foray.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

I have officially given up on the Nucanoe. It can be operated with a motor, but it is best when it is paddled. With a motor, balancing the weight distribution is critically important for stability, and fairly difficult. I did it, but it was not convenient.

So last week I picked up a used 2000 Gheenoe 15' 4" with a poorly matched but solid trailer and a 2 year old 6HP Honda.

The boat looked hideous but is solid. So far I've stripped off the spray can paint (and sharks teeth stickers!), and yesterday I primed the hull. Repainting is next.

Going to drop off the Honda tomorrow for maintenance and tuning/adjusting.

Also taking the trailer in to have it shortened and the bunks adjusted for balance.

I originally got the Nucanoe to fish the 4 creeks between the Highway 312 and Highway 206 bridges that I have easy access to...provided I could operate under power. The Gheenoe on the other hand, should work very well, and is rated to 10 HP. The 6 will plane it off.

Got offered a 22 foot carolina skiff today its an older model 2002 ish and needs a motor and the trailer needs work but it would be free might see what I can do with it atleast a free solid hull is a good get for a good sized boat. One of the square hulls which arent my favorite but beggars cant be choosers and it would be solid for inshore fishing.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Carolina Skiffs get a lot of hate but they're solid boats they certainly don't ride very comfortably in chop and are pretty simple designs but that's what keeps them at that price point. I'd never turn down a free one that's for sure.

(add if applicable) /s

Yeah the rides nothing to brag about but free is free. Would have to fix the trailer and all to get it off the spot I'm gonna look at it atleast. Was looking for more something bay hull but a skiff aint bad either if its salvagable at all might fix it and sell what I can atleast.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

free is free

I'm still hoping for a free motor to go with my free boat. Got a free trolling motor. All the motors I've seen for sale are typically more than I can get a similar boat w/ motor for.

That boat is a workhorse in the Bay. Crabbers love them for their roomy design and stable wide platform. They're durable as hell and unsinkable. The trailer might end up being nearly as much of an issue as a motor, but free a decent price point. Then again, my dear old daddy might have said "Son, you can't afford a free boat." He said that about hunting dogs, too, now that I think about it. Get it in the water and I'd be surprised if you can't use it or sell it to a local crabber. There's a lot of fishing in the Mobjack and that skiff would handle it most days you'd care to be out.

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Figured if itll float I can atleast use it in the mobjack just needs a motor and some work on it but I like tinkering with stuff so I dont mind. would be a nice upgrade on the dingy jonboat and its 5hp motor.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

I will take a free Parker 2510 walk around, if anyone is offering.

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

And I'm in for a free Freeman 42LR if anyone's looking to get one off their hands (gas for 5 years would be helpful as well)

(add if applicable) /s

Me, when I see the cost of a quality used walk around or sport cabin.

via GIPHY

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

You guys sound like the people I had to deal with in my former boat sales jobs... it's giving me a migraine

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

Free.99 is the best price, but that boat is hard on the knees and your spine. I had a 17 DLX for years. Loved it and I beat it to hell and it was a beast but damn if it didn't hurt to ride around in. I miss the simplicity of it but not the ride.

You will see this game, this upset and this sign next on ESPN Sportscenter. Virginia Tech 31 Miami 7

I used to use a similar skiff as a kid before we bought a 25 foot parker man was the difference day and night but like you said durable as a tank atleast. Gotta start somewhere

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Free needed here! 19' Stratos with 200HP. 250 would be sweet! 4 cycle sweeter.

Fished the Chick yesterday and put in at dead low tide. With a full moon you would have thought that the tide would roll. A west wind slowed that and we caught Some dinks in the first 2 hours .
There are big fish in the river but damn if I can find them!

"Hey Bud, you wont have to hold the opponent to 17 points anymore."

Of all the places back home I'd expect to see this, Lake Frederick was the first place I thought of. Apparently they aren't as big an issue as some say, so I'm not concerned. I never fish there much anymore anyway.

Spending my lunch break at Green Top and Bass Pro. We'll see what the damage is in an hour or two...

Gonna go buy the new Jackson yak they just got in thats the Big Rig?

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

Haha, man, I was looking longingly at all the kayaks. I've wanted one for years.

Ended up settling for a Shimano Sedona reel, some braid, some mono, some fluoro, hooks, jig heads, swivels, snap swivels, Gulp in about 5 different flavors, two types of fish bites, some gotcha plugs, some sting silver lures, pyramid sinkers in several weights, and a cast net. Couldn't find the rod I want. But enough damage was done.

That place is awesome. The guy at the fishing counter, Steve, was exceedingly helpful.

Can't remember if I asked this or not. I'm looking for a rod to throw lures, 1-4 oz, from the beach and pier, mainly for Spanish mackerel. I have my heavy surf spinning outfit for bait but it's too damn heavy to cast lures all day. Any suggestions? I was thinking something in the 8'-9' range, light to medium action, but finding that in a 1-4 oz range and a two piece is becoming a challenge. Perhaps the plethora of medium action rods would work? I feel like it shouldn't have the action of a pool cue for what I'm doing but I really don't know what I need. Any help would be appreciated.

I'd defer to french since this is his niche fishing but I will throw in my two cents. I threw my buddy's Tsunami airwave and it was pretty nice and super light. He had the 8 ft version 5/8 to 3 ounces.

Thanks! I'll check out this brand.

Edit: Did the rod seem to have a really heavy action or did it feel like the rod would load properly to toss 1 oz lures long distances?

Edit 2: the Airwave Elite, 9'-6" looks great. I'm leaning that direction but will wait for French and others to chime in.

No it will load a 1 oz lure easily. You generally want the lure weight to be in the middle of the rod rating. Yeah the airwave elite in 9'6" would be a good choice. There are definitely a ton more choices in the category.

Air Wave, St. Croix Triumph surf are good inexpensive options. St. Croix Mojo as well.

This isn't an area of expertise for me. I have not targeted spanish from the surf and never invested in a rod for throwing metal. When I do throw 1 1/2oz-3 oz I usually use an old Penn Powerstick 9 foot two piece. But, it isn't great and I have only caught bluefish when they were blitzing a bit.

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

Are you just using a 7 foot inshore rod on the pier?

For spanish and blues on the pier, I just use a St. Croix 7 foot medium power (6-12lb) fast action spinner with a 2500 or 3000 sized reel (Stradic.) I got a 7 foot GLoomis rated 10-17 for this fall (in case the albies are around), but the St. Croix is the same rod I would use for smallmouth or hickory shad in the river. I don't think they would have enough oomf for throwing heavier metal from the surf.

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

Gotcha that makes sense. I've used my 7' star rod in the surf this spring and it got out there a good ways. I was throwing like 1 1/4 ounce jig.

Id say a long medium heavy would be fine. Spent last week trying to give my ugly stick shakespeare combo to my buddy for his St. Croix mojo inshore and diawa setup that was like casting a ultralight for long casts with 3/8 jigs. The rod was heavy enough to handle 3 oz weights for pompano rigs without an issue as well and I'd imagine with the right reel and line it could go heavier. I'm in the same boat as you looking for a medium saltwater casting setup for throwing jigs and artificials for stuff in the mobjack and chesapeke. Really liked the st croix mojo inshore and diawa setup but would be interested to hear what those with more experience would reccomend.

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

I really enjoy the star rods stellar lite and seagis. I have the 7' medium power fast action. Getting a rod in 100 dollar range should be solid. I haven't used the mojo inshore so I can't compare.

I just ordered the Star Stellar Lite Surf Spinning rod, 9'-0", two piece, medium action. Seems to fit the bill. Will let you know what I think when it arrives. Thanks for all the advice everyone.

I have heard good stuff about Star rods. I have never owned one though.

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

Thanks! I'll give a report as best I can. I heard/read good things too so I bit the bullet.

That sounds like a solid choice to me. Hope you enjoy it.

Appreciate it. Now to survive the two weeks before the first salt trip of the year.

With the current dry weather, I might actually get to fish freshwater more this year than saltwater, for the first time in two years.

Plan on taking some float trips this weekend. May hit the Clinch one day and Holston too if I can. Rivers look amazing right now and I'm ready to soak some lures. Hope for a citation but would settle for a few slams on an xrap in the current and some calm skies. Stay safe out there this weekend and don't forget to pay tribute to what Monday is about.