Recent Fishing Charters- News From the Deck
Summer vacation is definitely in full swing! We can tell because we haven’t had a day off in… I have no idea how long! As tired as we are we are thankful to be on the water every day with great folks. We’ve been blessed with some awesome weather although there have been some days that afternoon thunderstorms forced us to call it a day early. Here is what we’ve been up to;
Offshore Fishing Charter Report – St. Simons Island and Jekyll Island
I want to let you know up front that we don’t plan on going offshore ahead of time. When we do “best bite” trips it is definitely an option as long as the weather permits, but we always make that call at the last minute. If you are interested in going offshore and you want to book a best bite trip, just let us know that you are interested and we will make a note of it. When the day comes, if the weather supports it and we feel that you’re going to have a better trip out deep… off we go! The reason we do this is because we lose too many days to rough seas when we promise to go offshore ahead of time, and we prefer to stay flexible so that we can fish the most appropriate way according to the conditions.
That being said… offshore fishing has been pretty awesome! The Cobia fishing has been the main focus over the last several weeks and we have done it in good style. We expect the Cobia action to taper off a bit this month but they will still be out there.
Here is a picture of Heath Yates, one of my long time customers, with his first Cobia;
We’ve also been finding plenty of Amberjack out there. You might have heard them referred to as “AJs” or “Reef Donkeys” as well. Reef donkey is a pretty good way to describe them because they fight hard in “low gear”. In my opinion, they taste great although some folks are deterred a little because they do have worms in the meat. Cut the worms out and leave the good parts and you have some great grilling material! You’ll find no complaints from me if you let them swim to fight another day though.
Heath took some underwater video during his trip and did some editing. Check it out!
Here is a nice AJ that Heath caught while searching for his Cobia;
I’ve been honored to not only guide Heath to his first Cobia, but Tom Molnar as well. Tom has fished the Broad River several times trying to get his first Cobia but hasn’t been able to connect. His luck changed on the Georgia coast as he got his first and second Cobia! In typical Cobia fishing fashion we broke a few fish off, but he was able to get two to the boat and into the fish box. His father Chuck was happy to step aside and let him check a Ling off of his bucket list and his son Tommy, who I dubbed “Cheesecake”, was an awesome first mate. We had fish all around the boat and anytime I said “Cheesecake! We need another Pogy!” he was Johnny on the spot with a fresh bait fish. Here are a couple of pictures of Chuck, Tom, and Cheesecake;
Nearshore Shark and Tripletail Fishing Report for St. Simons and Jekyll
Moving a little closer to land, the Shark fishing and Tripletail fishing has been good after taking a slight dip for a week or two. If you are looking to get your string stretched by a fish that fights like a Ferrari, Shark fishing will do the trick. There are plenty of shrimp boats out there chumming up the water and getting the Shark in a frenzy. The average size has been around 80 pounds with several bumping 130 pounds.
Here is a picture of Capt. Tim and his client with a nice Black Tip Shark;
Our family goes back a long way when it comes to Shark fishing. Check out this throwback picture from the 80s with Capt. Tim. He looks a bit different in this picture compared to the one above… but I look a LOT different! Yeah, I’m the one in the towel. I’ve grown a few inches since then! I’m also glad that those hats and shorts went out of style!
The bait has been pretty easy to find whether you’re going Shark fishing or going offshore. If you’re heading offshore, I can’t stress it enough that you should take the time to find the bait before heading out. It will pay off in the long run even if it takes longer than you would like. One good cast is all you need and you are ready to go. Here is a picture of a net full of Pogys from a recent charter;
The Tripletail fishing always seems to yield bigger fish in April and early May before giving way to smaller fish in late May. We’ve gone through both of those cycles now, and the bigger fish are showing up again! Check out this picture of a small Tripletail from late May;
Now check out what we’ve been seeing just a couple weeks later!
State waters are open for shrimp trawlers now, so hopefully they don’t blow all of our fish out of the water. I don’t really know why we can’t block out a 4 square mile area to protect one of the most unique fisheries you will find on the planet, but I digress. Here is a picture of the first shrimp trawler I observed dragging through the Tripletail grounds;
Inshore Fishing Charter Report
Inshore fishing has been up and down to be quite honest. One day there is a bite on every cast and the next day you’re sitting there wondering what happened. All in all, I give it a 6 out of 10. When the conditions are right we can really get on some Trout but when the water clarity, tides, or wind gets out of whack it’s nice to have our options open. Some customers are willing to live or die by the inshore bite, and others just think they are. Keeping an open mind can save you from a day of sorrow if you’re willing to leave the Trout, Flounder, and Redfish alone and go after something like Sharks, Whiting, or Tripletail.
We pretty much stay ready to switch gears at the drop of a hat if things are getting slow. It’s a great idea to give us a call the night before your trip so that we can discuss current conditions and what kind of options we’ll have. Hopefully, the whole playbook is open!
Check out these kids showing off their Trout catches!
We’ll be out on the water every day that the weather permits so if you call you will likely be speaking with my lovely (and very pregnant) wife, Katie. She knows her stuff, but if you would like for me to call you back when I get back from fishing and answer your questions just let her know. I’d be happy to do that.
Until next time…
Capt. TJ Cheek