Keys bridge fishing

Any reports on a good bite on bridge fishing?

Replies

  • rivamunstasteverivamunstasteve Posts: 606 Officer
    Smaller than usual where I go. Deeper channels/first reef holding some nice mangys I must say. Did hook a few small tarpon last week too on artificials. 
  • piner_wahoopiner_wahoo Posts: 3,163 Captain
    slo
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  • The Cat's EyeThe Cat's Eye Posts: 1,199 Officer
    Ok i give up !
    what does slo mean ?
    Giimoozaabi
  • SaltologySaltology Posts: 120 Deckhand
    Ok i give up !
    what does slo mean ?
    slo=slow
  • cameron sleepcameron sleep Posts: 443 Deckhand
    slo

    OK Piner. I know you are a man of few words, but how about a link to your "Piners Florida Keys dictionary and technical terms"? You got me stumped a few times too. LOL
  • tarponbro1tarponbro1 jacksonvillePosts: 85 Greenhorn
    No reports but I have a suggestion for you. Spend all night on a bridge like Seven Mile, Spanish Harbor, Channel 2 or 5 and put a whole butterflied ballyhoo on the bottom and wait. Use a conventional reel, put in free spool with the click on. I've caught some very, very nice snappers that way. Mangroves up to 8 or 9 lbs. and muttons up to almost 20 lbs. Use a 40 lb. monofilament leader and you won't deal with sharks very often. Use a 5 ft, leader or longer with an egg sinker big enough to hold bottom above the leader also.
  • RareRare Posts: 245 Deckhand
    Muttons up to 20lbs good lord...never seen that out there only on boats. Biggest from my time fishing the bridge I have seen a is 5lbs to 12lbs. Small pins are you best bet for the grover on the bridge and even at times grouper. 
  • tarponbro1tarponbro1 jacksonvillePosts: 85 Greenhorn
    You aren't going to catch your limit of muttons from a bridge, that's for sure, but they're there.
    The average mutton from a bridge was 7 -10 lbs. and I used the same rig I'd use in deeper water with about a 5 or 6 foot leader and a whole butterflied ballyhoo - head and tail cut off, butterflied from the head end and hooked through the backbone from the tail end. I'd use a longer leader from a boat whenever possible. You might go a couple of hours or more before your reel sounds off (some nights it won't go off at all but those nights were rare when I bridge fished) and it could be almost anything - a nice snapper, a shark or even a tarpon. I've slept on the catwalks and been woke up by my reel going off.My personal biggest mutton from a bridge was about 15 lbs. and my friend Howard caught one that was almost 20. If my memory is correct, he said that it wasn't the biggest one he'd caught from a bridge. He caught goliath grouper while shark fishing too. This was from the late 1970s and early 80s. The biggest muttons were in the deepest water we could find. We also used to sneak a wagon and ourselves onto the old Bahia Honda bridge from the west side. Someone had pried the metal that closed off the bridge to people and we could squeeze through. You can fish that channel from almost any size boat as long as it's not too windy. You never know what you'll catch. I've hooked tarpon on small strips of mullet while fishing for small snappers and the sharks in there can get huge. I wonder if you could use a drone to fly your bait out a couple of hundred yards out into that channel? Hmmm.. Also,  remember that muttons are caught up on flats at certain times of the year and I've caught plenty of nice muttons in less than 30 feet of water..
  • RareRare Posts: 245 Deckhand
    Oh, them snappers were back in the good old days of fishing. Not saying they cant be caught that size now but that is very...very rare....... "rare!"  Them muttons are caught small now. You did good with 16in to 20 in & 24in was great. With the new rules now being from 16in to 18in it gets very slim for many. From 10 to 5 fish now, it's doable. My personal best from bridge mutton was 6.  
  • tarponbro1tarponbro1 jacksonvillePosts: 85 Greenhorn
    Have you tried using whole ballyhoo for bait? I would bet there are still good sized mutton around inshore, just not as many as when I fished for them. The rig I described wasn't meant to be tended constantly. We fished other rods with other smaller baits and just listened for the ballyhoo rig to go off. Whoever tries this, here's some advice: Make sure your reel is in freespool with the click on before you leave it alone. If you don't you may see your rod and reel try to take a flying lesson!! BTW, there wasn't a limit on almost any bottom fish back then.
  • RareRare Posts: 245 Deckhand
    edited August 13 #12
    Yes, the hoo is what we use when we target big pinky. On a few trips with the guys, we went to no name and a  x-friend fisherman netted the crew with plenty of fresh hoo. We filled  3 of them 20 lb ice bags. At nite we drop our lantern and catch white bait and its been some time now that any of us seen the horse sized white bait like we used too. In the morning if threads fins are there we will catch if we are on the right bridge.



     
  • tarponbro1tarponbro1 jacksonvillePosts: 85 Greenhorn
    I would think you'd see some grouper on some of the bridges too, especially in the winter when they're out of season!!
  • RareRare Posts: 245 Deckhand
    Yes, they are there.... Big jews we dont care for. The blacks and reds as well. Drop or free-lined a crab if you see a Permit. Cero as well and Yellow Jacks etc... Not like in your days.... really have to put the time down there.
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