Forum guys enjoy an awesome Capt Yuri Tortugas trip!

Fellow Forum guys 'Shoeless' and 'bamba78' went with me on their second Dry Tortugas with the legendary Capt Yuri It was my 16th trip over the years!

Due to heavy currents, we fished shallow this time in 50-75 feet but we did VERY well over the Fri-Sun trip last weekend!

Plenty of double-digit Muttons, Yellowtails up to 22" and some really hungry Red Grouper! The Sat night Mangrove Snapper bite was also pretty nice! Got a bunch of Strawberry Grouper, some bigger Grunts, a nice Yellow Jack and a slob Amberjack on the last morning!

We totaled about 550 lbs of fish and all brought home about 60+ meals of super fresh fish..... all vacuum sealed right out of the fish box!!

A fantastic Crew, lots of laughs and plenty of fish!!

The bad news is that I have to wait until next May for my next trip!!

Replies

  • Gary MGary M Posts: 13,141 AG
    Ooops! This goofy new Format won't let me Edit my own post!

    We had     "bambam78"     with us on this trip!
  • Gary MGary M Posts: 13,141 AG
    And if you want to see the photo filled Report, it's been posted on a site that has to do with the main part of a boat and with not telling a lie......

    Probably can't post the link here but you can go find it.....
  • Conchy CritterConchy Critter Posts: 1,955 Captain
    Grouper my kinda trip. Wish I could have made it. Maybe next summer. 
  • timmcollinstimmcollins Posts: 833 Officer
    Gary M said:
    Ooops! This goofy new Format won't let me Edit my own post!

    Click the little gear wheel in the upper left of your post.

    "Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, martini in one hand, Cheeseburger in the other, body well used and worn out and screaming WOO-HOO What a Ride!"
  • xeniaxenia Posts: 410 Deckhand
    550 lbs of fish sounds like a typical one night trip off Boca Grande much closer to Key West when I was fishing with my dad, but we had many better nights than that over the years.  I'm sure you'd done better if it wasn't for the strong current.
  • Gary MGary M Posts: 13,141 AG
    Nope, this goofy new format does not have the gear wheel on the original post!

    Click the little gear wheel in the upper left of your post.


  • Gary MGary M Posts: 13,141 AG
    For 'our' crews it's not about slaughtering pounds of meat. At least for us.

    It's more about the Fun and the enjoyment of the Crew Comradery of each trip. It's a blast hanging out with buddies, doing what we love to do!
  • ShoelessShoeless Posts: 2,108 Captain
    If someone can go out and catch 550+ lb of quality and variety of fish like this recreationally in one night, than good on you guys, but I’ll be honest, I question that.  

    These trips show time and again how much fun it is to fish with such a great crew of guys. I can’t wait til next years trip. 
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • xeniaxenia Posts: 410 Deckhand
    Slaughtering pounds of fish is not the point.  You shouldn't have to go out to the Tortugas and fish 3 days to make that catch, that's the point.  Catches like this and MORE used to be a regular occurrence much, much closer to home. But, not anymore, and that's the sad part.  My first Key West fishing trip was a day off from tending lobster traps to catch some "dinner".  We fished 210 degrees from Stock Island, which put us directly south of Key West  proper.  Fished from 8:00 to around 12:00 when we had enough.  Got 16 blacks to 30 lbs, a dozen muttons to 15 lbs, and some yellowtail and assorted smaller grouper.  Close to 500 lbs in 4 hours of fishing 30 minutes from the dock.  And yes, there was great crew comradery on the trip too.


  • Gary MGary M Posts: 13,141 AG
    xenia said:
    Slaughtering pounds of fish is not the point. 

    My first Key West fishing trip was a day off from tending lobster traps to catch some "dinner". 

    Got 16 blacks to 30 lbs, a dozen muttons to 15 lbs, and some yellowtail and assorted smaller grouper. 

    Close to 500 lbs in 4 hours of fishing 30 minutes from the dock.  
    So, 'dinner' was almost 500 pounds of fish in 4 hours?

    No wonder the stocks are so depleted now.......

    Maybe the "good old days" shouldn't have been so 'good'......
  • ShoelessShoeless Posts: 2,108 Captain
    I tend to have to agree with Gary on this one.  
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • CoastalCatchCoastalCatch Lighthouse PointPosts: 412 Deckhand
    edited August 2018 #13
    The greedy, and those who enable and justify them, are still alive and well today!  :/

    'The further a society drifts from the truth, the more it will hate those that speak it.' ~ George Orwell

  • xeniaxenia Posts: 410 Deckhand
    We were a commercial boat, all three of us depended on fish for our living at that time.  That's easy to say when your paycheck is secured.  But, when your pay is swimming in the ocean, it's a different story.  Like I've said before, aside from lobster and stone crab traps, everything else we did was hook-and-line, which is no different than what recreationals do except we put in more time and kept more.  Don't forget that at the time we were making catches like these on hook-and-line, other boats were fish trapping and longlining the bottom in those same areas.  Another point that's overlooked is that recreational fishermen outnumber commercial 1,000:1, and their collective take is larger for many species.  I never thought is was greedy trying to earn a living catching fish which a lot of people enjoy eating, and I had enough sense to get out when I saw the way the stocks were being depleted.  And, when I tried to get the word out that we couldn't continue the way we were going, I was shut down mostly by recreational fishermen who felt everything was fine!  Let's just say it's been a collective effort in making the good ole days long gone.
  • Conchy CritterConchy Critter Posts: 1,955 Captain
    Gary M said:
    xenia said:
    Slaughtering pounds of fish is not the point. 

    My first Key West fishing trip was a day off from tending lobster traps to catch some "dinner". 

    Got 16 blacks to 30 lbs, a dozen muttons to 15 lbs, and some yellowtail and assorted smaller grouper. 

    Close to 500 lbs in 4 hours of fishing 30 minutes from the dock.  
    So, 'dinner' was almost 500 pounds of fish in 4 hours?

    No wonder the stocks are so depleted now.......

    Maybe the "good old days" shouldn't have been so 'good'......
    I was thinking the exact same thing. Probably has a LOT to do with the reason "You have to go out to the Tortugas and fish 3 days to make that catch"
  • Soda PopinskiSoda Popinski GrovelandPosts: 9,680 Admiral
    how long is that going to last either?    Another 5 years?    at the rate I see 30+ CCs with triple 300s I imagine Tortuga will look like July 2nd at Crystal river soon enough.   
    People use statistics the way a drunk uses a street light, for support rather than illumination.
  • Conchy CritterConchy Critter Posts: 1,955 Captain
    how long is that going to last either?    Another 5 years?    at the rate I see 30+ CCs with triple 300s I imagine Tortuga will look like July 2nd at Crystal river soon enough.   
    Luckily most of them don't know how to bottom fish. :-) 
  • Soda PopinskiSoda Popinski GrovelandPosts: 9,680 Admiral
    @Conchy Critter
    I'd like to say I do but it would taste like a lie after that Goliath made both me and my son look silly at the Skyway saturday morning.   30lb mono is like cotton candy and he had it frayed in half a dozen places with his gills
    People use statistics the way a drunk uses a street light, for support rather than illumination.
  • Reel TealReel Teal Posts: 3,402 Captain
    @Conchy Critter
    I'd like to say I do but it would taste like a lie after that Goliath made both me and my son look silly at the Skyway saturday morning.   30lb mono is like cotton candy and he had it frayed in half a dozen places with his gills
    Its not even catching the fish once hooked. A lot of people dont know how to get them to bite at all. I've even seen them struggle on long range trips
  • Soda PopinskiSoda Popinski GrovelandPosts: 9,680 Admiral
    Reel Teal said:
    @Conchy Critter
    I'd like to say I do but it would taste like a lie after that Goliath made both me and my son look silly at the Skyway saturday morning.   30lb mono is like cotton candy and he had it frayed in half a dozen places with his gills
    Its not even catching the fish once hooked. A lot of people dont know how to get them to bite at all. I've even seen them struggle on long range trips
    I've never tried, hoping to do one of these trips for my son's senior year just a father son thing.   But from reading these reports we'd have to get all different gear for a Tortuga trip. 
    People use statistics the way a drunk uses a street light, for support rather than illumination.
  • Reel TealReel Teal Posts: 3,402 Captain
    They're a blast. A must for the serious fisherman
  • ShoelessShoeless Posts: 2,108 Captain
    Reel Teal said:
    @Conchy Critter
    I'd like to say I do but it would taste like a lie after that Goliath made both me and my son look silly at the Skyway saturday morning.   30lb mono is like cotton candy and he had it frayed in half a dozen places with his gills
    Its not even catching the fish once hooked. A lot of people dont know how to get them to bite at all. I've even seen them struggle on long range trips
    I've never tried, hoping to do one of these trips for my son's senior year just a father son thing.   But from reading these reports we'd have to get all different gear for a Tortuga trip. 
    The gear really is not that different than anything I have in my arsenal at home.  For a 6 man trip, you are limited to 5 rods per guy based on the amount of space to store rods on the boat.  This last trip I only fished with 2 as my primary go to rods and 1 other to sabiki up bait at night.  

    My gear is typically on the higher end, as I use them all the time back here fishing out of SLI.  Main grouper setup is a carrot stix jigging rod with a Shimano Torsa 30, secondary setup Shimano Trevala rod with Shimano Talica 16.  Third rod was a run of the mill Crowder 12 lb rod and Shimano Stradic 5000.  I think I was a little outclassed with the super light Trevalla, so I’ll likely upgrade for next year, but it’s perfect fishing out of SLI.  Again, you don’t have to go as high end as I have.  

    Nearly all the fish fish I got were on 30-40 lb fluoro and 6/0 circle hooks.  Pretty simple setup that hauled in the largest grouper and mangrove Snapper on this last trip.  Gary actually pulled in the biggest mutton on his super light rod and I believe a Shimano Stradic 3 or 4000.  Super light setup, but still reels in the big ones.  
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • Gary MGary M Posts: 13,141 AG
    how long is that going to last either?    Another 5 years?    at the rate I see 30+ CCs with triple 300s I imagine Tortuga will look like July 2nd at Crystal river soon enough.   
    Actually, on Friday and Sat nights and even during the daytime, we rarely see any other boats fishing. Too far to run. That's been the same (few other boats out there) going back to my first DT trip in 2006.

    On Yuri's web site I can see a photo of all our fish on the deck after the 2008 trip which was our first! Conchy was on that one. We six were all Newbies! We had a blast!

    Then I compare it to our recent catches and we easily catch double. Do we ever go over our Legal Limits? Never. Only with ARS are we forced to stop at just 12 fish. On our July trip, we caught only 9. That was 'enough' for us.

    As a Crew, we always set Minimum Size Limits that are a few inches above the Legal size. That's our way to 'help' protect what's out there. We carefully release fish that we will not keep. We'd rather have 70 nice Yellowtail than 120 12 inchers..........

    We also use circle hooks which mostly prevents gut hooking and that helps too.
  • Reel MusselReel Mussel Posts: 297 Deckhand
    Do you see many women make the trip? My wife wants to go... LOL

    Greg,

    2017 Cape Horn 24OS


  • Conchy CritterConchy Critter Posts: 1,955 Captain
    Do you see many women make the trip? My wife wants to go... LOL
    My daughter wants a Yuri trip for her HS graduation. 
  • privateer19privateer19 Posts: 402 Deckhand
    clearly a case of great parenting, well done.
  • Gary MGary M Posts: 13,141 AG
    On this past trip, my wife and I stayed over night right there on the Marina Basin at The Perry Hotel. The next day, it took me two minutes to walk to the boat! She stayed behind and had a relaxing few days. When we docked up, she came over and got to meet Capt Yuri and I gave her a tour of the boat! For 'women' they'd need to be not in the least, fussy or particular!

    We have toyed with the idea of bringing wives but that idea never gets very far with them!

    I know of one guy who brought his wife and it was sloppy out so she was curled up in her bunk, sick the whole time!

    Conchy, you better be booking a summer trip soon or your daughter will be well into her college years!
  • Kokosing LoverKokosing Lover Posts: 524 Officer
    Gary M said:
    how long is that going to last either?    Another 5 years?    at the rate I see 30+ CCs with triple 300s I imagine Tortuga will look like July 2nd at Crystal river soon enough.   
    Actually, on Friday and Sat nights and even during the daytime, we rarely see any other boats fishing. Too far to run. That's been the same (few other boats out there) going back to my first DT trip in 2006.

    On Yuri's web site I can see a photo of all our fish on the deck after the 2008 trip which was our first! Conchy was on that one. We six were all Newbies! We had a blast!

    Then I compare it to our recent catches and we easily catch double. Do we ever go over our Legal Limits? Never. Only with ARS are we forced to stop at just 12 fish. On our July trip, we caught only 9. That was 'enough' for us.

    As a Crew, we always set Minimum Size Limits that are a few inches above the Legal size. That's our way to 'help' protect what's out there. We carefully release fish that we will not keep. We'd rather have 70 nice Yellowtail than 120 12 inchers..........

    We also use circle hooks which mostly prevents gut hooking and that helps too.
    I'd rather have to filet 70 yellowtail than 120 yellowtail, of whatever size.
  • Gary MGary M Posts: 13,141 AG
    We bring in a hired gun to help clean the fish so with 6 guys on the crew we set up a Production Line to fillet, label, bag, seal the fish. We take extra good care of the fish from catching them to eating them.

    It normally takes us 2-3 hours to be ready to drive home, once we dock up.
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