Father & Son Fishing. A Time-Honored Tradition!
I was a fortunate kid by having a father who always seemed to have time to take me fishing. It may have been one of the greatest gifts he could have given me. So I never take it for granted when I see a father take his son fishing. And that’s exactly what Jason and his son, Jeramiah from Atlanta, GA had planned with me on this somewhat bumpy April day.
April is a real transition month here in the Florida Keys. And what that means is we can start watching the offshore scene for what should be the beginning of the mahi mahi run. As the water warms the reef fishing, specifically the yellowtail fishing begins to heat up as they start thinking about spawning. We’re still seeing some sailfish on the windy days we can get out. And other gamefish like blackfin tunas, bonito and amberjacks start to kick in to high gear. What this also means is we have to make decisions very carefully and pay attention to what’s going on because it can change day to day.
With a half day of fishing we’re really targeting yellowtails and muton snappers on the reef. But having a load of pilchards, cigar minnows and pinfish is also always a good idea. You never know when a cobia, kingfish or even a sailfish will show up.
The plan of attack was to chum heavily on the yellowtail spot and deploy the chumballs while at the same time having a freelined live bait back in the slick and one on the bottom.
Got the chum balling going and immediately hooked a big fish that broke us off on the bottom. I was thinking big muton snapper. It really takes some skill to best a big mutton on 12lb spinning gear. For some reason the big yellowtails would not bite. Marked the heck out of them. Just couldn’t turn them on. Even had a chunk line going and couldn’t get them to go. However, Jason did get a monstrous bite on a chumball. And for a minute it looked like this one might not make it up to the boat. But I showed him how to “bottom out” the rod and apply maximum pressure to the 12lb and within a few minutes we had a beautiful 13lb mutton snapper on ice!
The bonito were also swimming up to the back of the boat and practically eating out of the chum bag! So we wore out both father and son on a few of those. All in all a good day of father & son fishing!
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