"Don't let him take you into that hole!"... "Keep the pressure on!"... Back Country Grouper fishing can be very exciting and can certainly test your skills on light tackle. Their voracious appetites and killer instincts make them fairly easy to target... but, their sheer strength make them a worthy adversary. Many anglers will troll lipped plugs along deeper channel edges to locate fish. Others spend countless hours idling and watching their sonar in an attempt to locate holes & big structure. Each technique is effective, but share one common dominator... deep moving water. Keeping this in mind, you can narrow search areas down quickly. Once I find an area holding fish, I anchor up current (provided it's not in the center of a channel) and feed baits back for a natural presentation. It doesn’t take long to tell if grouper are around… usually, they’ll let you know with a freight train like hit followed by lots of screaming drag!
Can we come back tomorrow, Dad?
One of my greatest pleasures in life is introducing children to fishing and to Everglades National Park. Unknowingly, they share a raw excitement often times lost among adults and remind us why we love this sport so much. This week I had the pleasure of spending a few days with Dads and their sons... some first time fishing trips and some first time visitors to the Park. While the Snook, Redfish and Grouper fishing was productive, they had the most fun with non-stop Trout, Jacks (fartfish, named for their grunting/farting noises by little Mikey Ortiz) and ladyfish... go figure After a little while, they were casting, jigging and catching fish on their own... Awesome!
Mikey, Ricky & Noah
Who wants to go fishing?... Raise your hand
Go Mikey, go!
Nice fish, Nick!
Mouth to mouth resuscitation...
I hate to bring this up, but I feel it is worth mentioning. While on charter this weekend with the kids, I could not fish two particular areas as there were boats already there... boats owned by ex-clients. I continually run into this problem... people who simply don't respect me or my business enough to avoid over-fishing areas I showed them. Instead of using the techniques and strategies I shared to find new areas to fish, they somehow find pleasure in hitting mine. No wonder those areas are holding less fish these days... Shame on you.
I'm looking forward to a new week packed with many days on the water... some friends, long time clients and more kids!