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Florida leads the nation in family fishing and boating spots

Here is some interesting information that hit my in-box from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission about Florida being a great place for family fishing and boating. With the 4th of July just around the corner, and anyone that lives here already knows, “Yes, it is a great place for activities on the water.”

Florida swept the Take Me Fishing™ 2016 “Top 100 Family Friendly Places to Boat and Fish in the U.S.” list, hosting the top four locations with nine locations on the list in total—more than any other state. Recreational boating plus saltwater and freshwater fishing contribute more than $20 billion annually to Florida’s economy.

The top four locations on the list are:
No. 1 Everglades National Park;
No. 2 Bahia Honda State Park, Florida Keys;
No. 3 Blue Springs State Park, St. Johns River; and
No. 4 Lake Kissimmee State Park.

The additional five Florida locations on the list are: No. 12 Suwannee River; No. 21 Hickory Point, the Harris Chain of Lakes; No. 44 Lake Osborne, Lake Worth; No. 52 Lake Okeeheelee, West Palm Beach; and No. 92 Katheryn Abbey Hanna Park, Jacksonville.

“Fishing and boating are dynamic activities that bring families together and get more people active and outdoors,” said Tom Champeau, director of FWC’s Division of Freshwater Fisheries. “Our state’s ranking on this list further proves that Florida truly is the Fishing Capital of the World. The FWC is dedicated to and will continue to provide great fishing and boating opportunities.”

More than 100 state parks offer fishing as a family-friendly activity. To find one in your area, visit FloridaStateParks.org. Some parks also offer fishing piers along the coasts, rivers, lakes and springs.

“Florida State Parks are an outstanding resource for Floridians and visitors,” said Florida Park Service Director Donald Forgione. “Fishing and boating opportunities are abundant in many of our 174 state parks, trails and historic sites, and I am thrilled to see that three of our parks are considered among the best in the nation.”

The Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation’s Take Me Fishing™ campaign initiated a nationwide vote to provide families and outdoor enthusiasts with a recommended list of the best family-friendly places to experience the joys of boating and fishing. Criteria for the top places to fish and boat included having a public body of water within driving distance of a major city, good fishing opportunities and family friendly amenities. Approximately 35,000 different anglers and boaters cast nearly 650,000 votes to support their favorite fishing and boating locations.

“The best way to enjoy fishing and boating is to find a special place to fish with family and friends, so we’re thrilled that so many people shared their favorite place to engage in this national pastime,” said RBFF President and CEO, Frank Peterson. “If you and your family haven’t tried fishing, we hope you’re nearby one of the Top 100 spots to cast away. It’s a great way to enjoy, conserve and restore our nation’s aquatic natural resources.”

View the entire “Top 100 Family Friendly Places to Boat and Fish in the U.S.” list at www.takemefishing.org/blog by clicking on the featured article.

Visit Florida Visits Amelia Island to Fish

 Visit Florida Visits Amelia Island to FishVisit Florida is the state’s official tourism marketing company and it provides a ton of information to those visiting Florida. Tourism is one of Amelia Island’s biggest sectors, and many of the state’s attractions invest as Partners in advertising campaigns to generate more traffic for the industry.

Local resident and Charter Fishing Captain Russell Tharin took Visit Florida writer Terry Gibson on a dynamic and productive trip through the uncrowded salt marshes and shallow waters surrounding one of the best kept secrets in Northeast Florida, Fernandina Beach.

Check out the wonderful video produced when Terry went fishing with Captain Russ:

http://www.visitflorida.com/en-us/videos/2014/Insider-Amelia-Island-Offers-Some-of-Floridas-Best-Fishing.html

Just another reason to love Amelia Island, Florida!

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Rotarians Learn How to Cast

Rotarians Learn How to CastOn Friday, March 7th, the Rotary Club of Amelia Island Sunrise was treated to lessons in fly casting from Captain Lawrence Piper of The Angler’s Mark.

Captain Piper has been providing fly fishing adventures on Amelia Island for over 7 years.

As a certified Fly Casting Instructor from the Federation of Fly Fishers, Captain Piper provides instruction on how to fine tune your casting technique and become a better fisherman!

In his presentation, Captain Piper talked about the 5 principles of casting:
-Eliminating slack in your line
-Acceleration of the fly rod
-Following a straight line with the rod tip
-Varying casting strokes
-Timed pauses

The Angler’s Mark offers tours of all the backwaters of Amelia Island with Captain Piper providing all the tackle and instruction needed to be a terrific fly fisherman.

Born and raised in Fernandina Beach, Captain Piper loves to share the history of the island and all the best fishing spots! For more information about Captain Piper and The Angler’s Mark, visit the website at www.TheAnglersMark.com.

The Rotary Club of Amelia Island Sunrise meets every Friday at 7:30 a.m. at the Fernandina Beach Golf Club. For more information about the club or to attend a morning breakfast meeting, please contact president, Mark Dennis, at mark@A1Awealthmanagement.com or go to www.ameliaislandrotary.com.

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2013 NSFA Fernandina Beach Fishing Rodeo

2013 NSFA Fernandina Beach Fishing RodeoIt is time for the 2013 NSFA Fernandina Beach Fishing Rodeo on Amelia Island! August 2 – 3, 2013 will show off the hard work the Rodeo Committee has been doing to put on this annual event.

Registration closes at 8:00 PM, August 2nd, so you still have time to participate. The mandatory Captain’s Meeting is Friday night at the Fernandina Harbor beginning at 7:00 PM.

The rules are simple:
No lines in the water until 6:30 am Saturday morning.
All fish must be weighed at the Fernandina Harbor.
No contact with other boats or both will be disqualified.

Fishing Rodeo Prizes (Redfish, Wahoo, Dolphin, Sea Trout, Flounder, Cobia, Sheepshead, and Sea Bass)
-1st Place per Species- $750
-2nd Place per Species- $450
-3rd Place per Species- $300

Kingfish Division Prizes (formerly Tournament of Champions)
-1st Place Overall – $10,000
-2nd Place Overall – $3,500
-3rd Place Overall – $2,500
-4th Place Overall – $2,000
-5th Place Overall – $1,500
-6th Place Overall – $1,000
-7th Place Overall – $850
-8th Place Overall – $750
-9th Place Overall – $600
-10th Place Overall – $500

Special prizes will also be awarded to Lady Angler, Youth Angler and Redfish with the Most Spots.

-Small Boat Class: 1st Prize- $1,300; 2nd Prize- $450
-Youth Angler: 1st Prize- $1,200; 2nd Prize- $400
-Lady Angler: 1st Prize- $1,100; 2nd Prize- $350

This is a SKA sanctioned event!

Here is the schedule of events:
Friday, August 2, 2013
5:00 pm – Registration Opens
5:00-8:00 pm – Public Barbeque
7:00 pm – Captain’s Meeting & Boat Number Prize Drawing
6:00-8:00 pm – Sounds on Centre
8:00 pm – Registration Closes

Saturday, August 3, 2013
6:30 am – Fishing Opens
2:00 pm – Weigh-in Opens
5:00 pm – Weigh-in Line Closes
5:00 pm – Public Barbeque with Live Entertainment by Flashback
7:30 pm – Awards and Raffles

New this year is a catch-photo-release option for Kayaking anglers!

For more information please visit the Nassau Sport Fishing Association’s website at fishnsfa.com.

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Missing Teen Presumed Drowned

Missing Teen Presumed DrownedA fishing trip went tragically wrong when a teen fishing near Fort Clinch slipped into turbulent waters. Here are the recent press releases from the City of Fernandina Beach Police Department:

Press Release One
While patrolling the beach near Fort Clinch, a Fernandina Beach police officer happened upon a distraught and frantic group of men that reported a drowning incident that occurred just moments earlier.

Officer Mark Ocepek radioed for assistance at 4:32 PM and additional help arrived in the form of Marine Units from the Nassau County Sheriff’s Office, the Florida Water and Fish Commission, and the United States Coast Guard. Officer’s scanned the beaches and rock jetties, but the young victim could not be located.

At 6:30 PM the area was still being worked by the U.S. Coast Guard search helicopter and rescue vessel, as well as Fernandina Beach.

Caster Nova Gray, 17, of Nashville, GA was reportedly net fishing in shallow water near Fort Clinch when he apparently stepped into deeper water or the channel and immediately went under the water and did not surface. Gray reportedly could not swim, which was later confirmed by his mother when notified of this incident.

A companion, Hayward Collier, was close by and attempted to pull Gray to safety, but was affected by the strong current and was unable to pull Gray from under the water. Two others, Willie Frank Hallback, 61, and Greg Stewart, 15, also from Nashville, GA were present and interviewed by investigators on the scene.

Authorities are continuing the search for the victim.

Press Release Two
On May 30, 2013, seventeen year old Caster Nova Gray of Nashville, Georgia was fishing in shallow water off the bank of Fort Clinch when he apparently stepped into the deep water of the channel and was swept under water by the strong currents. Friends fishing with Gray made a valiant attempt to save him, however the strong water prevented them from bringing him to safety.

Immediately after the incident was reported, law enforcement officers from the Fernandina Beach Police Department, Nassau County Sheriff’s Office, Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission, Camden County Georgia Sheriff’s Office, Georgia Department of Natural Resources, and the United States Coast Guard searched the area in an attempt to locate Gray. Several law enforcement agencies continued to search from the shore, the air and by boat through Monday afternoon without any results. As the search progressed, the United States Coast Guard worked closely with the Fernandina Beach Police Department to provide information on recovery assessments based on the tides and current, using state of the art sonar technology and modeling software.

In addition to the comprehensive search, various law enforcement dive teams were consulted. However, due to the size and severe conditions of the channel, such as rip currents near shore, as well as known obstructions and poor visibility within the channel, it was deemed unsafe for divers to conduct a grid search.

Despite the official search being suspended, officers assigned to the area that patrol the beaches and ocean on a regular basis will continue be alert for any evidence that might lead to the recovery of Gray.

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30th Annual Kingfish Tournament and Fishing Rodeo

30th Annual Kingfish Tournament and Fishing RodeoIt is time for the Nassau Sport Fishing Association’s 30th Annual Fishing Rodeo and Kingfish Tournament!

Come to the foot of Centre Street in Fernandina Beach to catch the excitement.

August 3, 2012
Registration hours: 5:00 to 8:00 PM
Captain’s Meeting Time: 7:00 PM

    -The Captain’s Meeting will include a public barbeque; beer, water, sport’s drinks, and soda will be available for purchase.
    -Tournament T-shirts and hats will be offered for sale.
    -Raffle tickets will be available for Awards Dinner raffle on Saturday. Winner need not be present to win.

August 4, 2012
Fishing Hours: 6:30 AM to 5:00 PM
Weigh-in: 2:00 to 5:00 PM
Award’s Dinner & Music by Flashback: 5:00 to 8:00 PM
Awards/Raffle: 7:30 PM

Nassau Sport Fishing Association is a 501c3 charity. Proceeds benefit educational programming, college scholarships, youth programming, reef development, and more.

For more information and a listing of the prize structure, please visit the website at www.fishnsfa.com.

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Cobia Come Early to Amelia Island

Cobia Come Early to Amelia IslandOur fishing party cleared the jetties off Amelia Island, Florida, around 11:00 am. Celebrating Luke’s birhtday, we were greeted by calm seas, sunny skies and high hopes of catching some really big fish! Fishing reports from the previous day included news of a 62 pound cobia that was caught at the South St. Marys jetties and it prompted us to carefully inspect each bouy marker all the way to the STM sea bouy. No cobia were found and a short ride later we were soaking squid and cut mullet at FB reef.

Immediately upon hitting the bottom of the sea floor, our baits were inhaled by hungry black sea bass. We were reeling them in two at a time! Every drop produced large seabass. Luke’s father alone caught at least 40! I had some live mullet in the baitwell and I pinned one to one of Luke’s hooks in hopes of digging a grouper from the natural structure 65 feet below. As I was unhooking a seabass from another anglers rig Luke shouted that he had a big fish and was struggling mightily to bring it up. When the fish finally made it to the boat I scooped it up with the dipnet and admired Lukes 18 lb. gag grouper. With sore arms he and his fellow anglers continued to catch seabass for several hours.

Another highlight was a pair of giant sunfish cruising past the Cleansweep boat.

On our return to Amelia we inspected the first set of bouys and discovered a cobia lazing next to a barracuda in the shadow of bouy #2. I tossed a live mullet in his general direction and he gulped it down in seconds, setting the hook. He ran around the bow of the boat and swam on the surface unphased then bolted toward the bottom in the direction of the bouy anchor chain. I applied a little too much pressure in order to avoid the chain, and with my jigging rod bent double and the drag singing, the knot between the flourocarbon leader and the braided line failed under the strain. We all gasped as the rod straightened and our estimated 60 lb. cobia disappeared into the murky depths.

The day was not lost as we caught fish all day and spent another great day fishing the waters off Amelia Island!

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Fishing Rodeo and Sounds on Center

Fishing Rodeo and Sounds on CenterNassau Sport Fishing Association’s newly formatted Fishing Rodeo begins this Friday just before Sounds on Centre in Fernandina Beach, Florida. The rodeo includes amberjack, dolphin, grouper and cobia, and more. Local fisherman and competitive teams will fish the hot spots in our surrounding waters making for a lively tournament indeed.

Friday night from 6:00 to 8:00 PM enjoy Sounds on Center with dancing in the streets to a live band, raffle prizes, t-shirts, Pirates and more. Bring your lawn chairs and enjoy local favorites Touch of Gray.

With Tropical Storm Emily churning up the Atlantic, we will keep an eye on weather updates and surf reports. Hopefully, she will stay off shore and not disturb our weekend fun which includes the SunSplash Music Festival and the Jax Sprint Series Triathlon, both being held on Amelia Island beginning Saturday morning.

Needless to say, if the weather holds up, this is going to be one very busy weekend in Fernandina Beach!

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Clean Sweep Fishing Charters

Clean Sweep Fishing Charters

For the Best North Florida Freshwater and Offshore Fishing!
Contact Captain Jim Wormhoudt at 904-753-0882 or J_Wormhoudt@Yahoo.com

Now offering professional rod and reel repair!

httpvh://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xavu9iTvryo

Meet Jim Wormhoudt
Captain Jim Wormhoudt has been fishing the waters of Amelia Island and Fernandina Beach, Florida for over 30 years. His experience catching local Kingfish, Cobia, Grouper, Snapper, Shark, Drum and more makes him a legendary fishing authority in Northeast Florida.
Meet Captain Jim Wormhoudt
Grouper Big Kingfish

The Boat

Jim will take you fishing on his 24 foot Everglades. He is USCG Licensed and Insured. Visa and Mastercard are accepted and fishing charters make memorable gifts! Judie Mackie fishing

Freshwater Tidal Creek Fishing

Largemouth Bass – Trout – Redfish – Flouder – Tarpon

Girl with Bass Jetties, Backwater, Offshore – let Captain Jim Wormhoudt suggest the best options to go fishing in and around Amelia Island, anytime of the year!
Justin fishing in NE Florida Bill fishing with Jim Wormhoudt
Debbie goes fishing Brandon fishing aboard the Clean Sweep
Lawrence catching fish Jim catches the Daily Double

Stren-ad
Fishing is easy when chartering with Captain Jim and he knows all the best fishing holes in the Amelia Island area. Northeast Florida provides a variety of fishing that lets you keep your line wet all year long.

All bait, tackle, ice and licenses are provided as well as fish cleaning services at the end of your day.

If you are looking for a fishing charter near Amelia Island, give Captain Jim Wormhoudt a call… he’ll “hook” you up aboard the Clean Sweep!

Captain Jim Wormhoudt
(904) 753-0882
J_Wormhoudt@yahoo.com

Read Captain Jim’s Latest Fishing Tales

Cold Weather Trout Fishing on Amelia Island

Amelia Fall Trout Fishing is Smoking

Fall Fishing Action Aplenty

Redfish, Seatrout and Flounder, Oh My

Hot Shark Fishing Action near Amelia Island

Catching a Trophy of a Grey Grouper

Snapper Seabass Shark Shark Shark

Cobia Fishing Time

Great Grouper

Spanish Mackerel and Bluefish Arrive

How to Fish for Whiting

Bass Fishing on Lofton Creek

Black Drum Fishing

Back Yard Bass Fishing

We Did Not Go Fishing off Amelia Island

Sharks off Amelia Island

Fishing Rod Basics

Going Solo and Fishing Alone

Easily Overlooked Lofton Creek

Bottom Fishing the Deep Blue Sea

Fall Fishing Action Aplenty

Everglades Fishing Boat

Everglades Fishing Boat

Wednesday dawned with the first rain we have experienced in at least 30 days. Not comfortable fishing conditions as a rule, but the rain moved away and gave way to blustery Northeast winds and overcast conditions, a classic autumn Amelia Island fishing scenario.

A change in the weather often will create a feeding frenzy for fish and lots of action for anglers. Wednesday’s crew of four seafood restaurant owners arrived late, but the tide had been extremely high due to strong northeast winds pushing it in, so outgoing water was delayed several hours.

Targeting speckled seatrout, red bass and puppy drum we soaked live shrimp suspended beneath a popping cork and as the tide began to move out a submerged oyster bar adjacent to a grassy point produced several small Trout. As the tide approached the half way point in its outward flow we moved to a grassy shoreline with submerged oyster beds along it and a deteriorating dock with lots of old pilings. I hoped to catch redfish prowling the grassline for crustaceans, mullet etc… as they washed out of the grass with the outgoing tide. My crew was delighted as a steady barrage of strikes erupted from around the pilings and hidden oyster beds. Many redfish between 2 and 6 pounds were released as well as a five pound puppy drum. The light spinning gear spooled with 10 lb. test proved a challenge in negotiating fish from around the dock pilings. A 20 lb flourocarbon leader helped to keep the line from parting as fish run over sharp oysters and crusty dock pilings. We blazed through 100 local live shrimp in less than 3 hours and re-baited in a small creek by castnetting finger mullet and small live shrimp, both staples for a variety of fall inshore species.

Keep an eye on approaching autumn weather changes as cold and warm fronts approach our area as they can boost fishing prospects especially this time of year when inshore and backwater fishing is at its peak.

To get in on the action call me at 904-753-0882 and remember that fishing charters make for unforgettable holiday and birthday presents!

Captain Jim Wormhoudt
CleanSweep Charters
30 years local experience

Redfish, Seatrout and Flounder, Oh My

Granddads Lures

Granddad's Lures

Redfish, seatrout and flounder headline the action now and in the coming weeks as the mullet run continues and the water temperatures cool a little each day. Flyfisherman and lure fisherman moving stealthily through the marshes will catch many fish with topwater action providing spectacular strikes, but for the meat and potatoes, blue collar, put filets in the fryer types, live bait fished while anchored up at your favorite fishing hole is a fall tradition that is hard to beat. You can kick back with a cold beverage and even listen to the football game if you are fortunate to have a radio on your boat.

Flounder action is great right now during the lower tide phases around creek mouths and rocky shorelines with light tackle and a short leader, 6 to 10 inches tops, with a 1/8 to 1/4 ounce jig head or a 1/2 ounce barrel sinker above a small swivel, between leader and line. Leader material of 12 to 20 lb flourocarbon line remains invisible and helps avoid cutoffs on sharp oyster shells. Kahle hooks work well in the #1/0 to #2 size stuck through the lips of a mud minnow or small finger mullet, as well as live shrimp barbed through the tail. Work these baits slowly across the bottom like a bass fisherman works a plastic worm and wait for a slight jolt and watch as your line slowly peels off the reel, then set the hook. Many flounder are also caught with live shrimp and float rigs while trout fishing. Doormat flounder 5 to 10 lbs. are out there waiting for you to drift a bait over their strike zone. They are one of my favorite fish for catching and for tablefare and as an added incentive the state record summer flounder of 21 lbs. was caught right here in 1983 off the bridge at the south end of Amelia Island. More on fall Redfishing and Speckled Seatrout next week.

Go ahead and call me for tips on rigging and fishing techniques or learn firsthand on a fishing charter with me aboard the CleanSweep boat.

Captain Jim Wormhoudt
CleanSweep Charters
(904) 753-0882

Hot Shark Fishing Action near Amelia Island

Hot Shark Fishing Action near Amelia Island

Hot Shark Fishing Action near Amelia Island

Hot is the word! Hot water, hot air and some hot shark fishing is everywhere. Inshore, offshore and at the jetties, too, they may even be at the Atlantic Avenue Recreation Center’s pool.

The VHF radio was alive with enthusiastic captains bragging about their shark fishing success. Sharks were even eating my blue Crabs fished on the bottom for Redfish at the end of the south jetty rocks, as well as large mullet floated on the surface for Tarpon. Tarpon were rolling in my chum-slick, but unable to get to the Mullet ahead of the sharks! I say we have a shark tournament with the prizes being awarded for the most sharks brought in.

Last week we did eventually manage to find some small ledges offshore that produced no sharks and limited out on Seabass and Grouper. The Grouper were eating large Mullet pinned to a five ounce chartreuse Grouper Jig stuck in a rod holder so it would bounce up and down just over the bottom. We also had lots of fun on a stiff spinning outfit.

Things will probably stay about the same unless we start getting seabreezes again in the afternoon. Sometimes a small change in the weather or wind can shake things up. Redfish have been showing up in fair numbers at the jetties during the low incoming tide phase. Live finger mullet or live Pogies fished on the bottom are providing good action between shark bites.

Call me for a charter booking if your arms are strong enough to battle lots of sharks and some tasty local Grouper.

Captain Jim Wormhoudt
CleanSweep Charters
(904) 753-0882

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Kingfish Tournament Benefits Florida’s First Coast

Greater Jacksonville Kingfish Tournament

Greater Jacksonville Kingfish Tournament

The AT&T Greater Jacksonville Kingfish Tournament benefits the local community through Jacksonville Marine Charities.

Every year the AT&T Greater Jacksonville Kingfish Tournament is held at Sisters Creek Park in July on the Intercoastal waterway. This two day tournament includes a junior angler competition, a food festival, vendor booths, live entertainment and so much more. Reported to be the largest kingfish tournament in the world, Jacksonville has been hosting this tournament since 1981.

Tournament week is July 19 to the 24, 2010 and up to 1,000 boats may participate. Headlining entertainment for Friday the 23rd is Southbound at 8:00 PM, and Mile Train is performing at 8:00 PM on Saturday, July 24th.

Jacksonville Marine Charities promotes marine conservation and uses the proceeds from this tournament to support marine science research, preservation and education. In the last 19 years this charity has donated over $650,000 to the First Coast Community.

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Jack Daniels Fishing Story

Jack Daniels Fishing Story

Jack Daniels Fishing Story

Author: Unknown

This is the best reason I have ever heard as to why you should always take Jack Daniels when you go fishing.

“I went fishing this morning but after a short time I ran out of worms. Then I saw a cottonmouth with a frog in his mouth. Frogs are good bass bait.

Knowing the snake couldn’t bite me with the frog in his mouth I grabbed him right behind the head, took the frog, and put it in my bait bucket.

Now the dilemma was how to release the snake without getting bit. So, I grabbed my bottle of Jack Daniels and poured a little whiskey in its mouth. His eyes rolled back, he went limp. I released him into the lake without incident and carried on fishing using the frog.

A little later, I felt a nudge on my foot. There was that same snake with two frogs in his mouth.

Life is good in the South!

Catching a Trophy of a Grey Grouper

Catching a Trophy of a Grey Grouper

Catching a Trophy of a Grey Grouper

Slick ocean waters and a rising sun resembling a red rubber ball greeted our fishing party as we rounded the corner of the St. Marys channel near Fort Clinch State Park. The water around us fortunately was teeming with hungry Bluefish gorging themselves with glass minnows and two throws of the cast net yielded enough small blues for a day of trolling offshore of Amelia Island.

We headed east to the FA barge area and trolled only two flat lines because the previous day I could barely keep a line in the water as Kingfish and Baracudas were competing for our trolled baits and there was little time to put out more lines. After several hours we had two King Mackerel and one small cuda in the box.

My charter guest being a Musky and Northern pike fisherman from Minnesota wanted to grill some Barracuda which I told him was as good as any fish in the sea. I don`t recommend that you eat Barracuda because there is a remote chance of catching “Ciguatara” disease but he said he would chance that. Islanders say that if you throw a piece of a Barracuda on an ant bed and the ants will eat it it is safe. Where is a good ant bed when you need one? Anyway the striking fish feeding frenzy ended in the FB area with a double header of large Bonito, one of which ended with a Cuda slashing a Bonito in half before our eyes boatside. All the strikes we had whether Kings or Cudas began with the fish rocketing skyward sometimes multiple times putting on quite a show for my guests.

Grey Grouper

Grey Grouper

Lastly I pinned a ten inch Bluefish to a chartreuse four ounce Grouper Jig on a light, but stiff spinning outfit and let it down over a small ledge we had trolled over several times. Bounce, bounce and wham! The rod doubled over as I passed it to one of my guests, the stiff jigging rod and braided line did its job and what seemed like eternity passed as he hoisted the heavy fish up through a pack of hungry Cudas who were apparently intimidated by our catch which finally floated on the surface unharmed. A 32 inch, 18 pound Grey Grouper! A trophy when caught within 12 miles of shore.

My new best friends were planning a fish fry and taking pictures of their catch at the dock as we parted ways with plans to fish again in the late fall when the Grouper action is at its peak in our Northeast Florida waters.

Captain jim Wormhoudt
CleanSweep Fishing Charters
(904) 753-0882