Skip to main content
Home West Central General Fishing & The Outdoors

Fishing Beyond the Elbow

Beyond the Elbow
As a Central Florida native who has been fishing the waters of our state ever since the late forties I have seen, and been part of, many changes. I grew up and fished in a Florida that was the least populous of all southern states. Today, Florida is the third most populated state in the entire country.
In the first half of 2020 interest in fishing has sky rocketed in the Sunshine State; nearly 900,000 fishing licenses were sold representing a 40% increase in new fishermen/girls. That's a lot of pressure on our fishery.
Is quality fishing still available in Florida?
Let's take a look.
Good management leads to good fishing. 
Florida fishing, both recreational & commercial, is governed very strictly. On the commercial side we have the IFQ Program; on the recreational side we have seasons, size, and possession limitations.
The fish-police are everywhere. I snapped these pictures as the Florida was boarded by the FWC 90 miles off Madeira Beach:

Properly managed there are plenty of fish for both recreational & commercial:

One of the many things that make Florida the Fishing Capital of the World is consistency. The Sunshine State features outstanding fishing 24/7 twelve months out of the year.
Check out a couple of the Florida Middle Grounds BIG boys from 8/21/20:

Friday, 8/28/20, 3PM, we are ready. Open wide John's Pass Bridge. We are on a mission; a mission to catch fish:

On this trip we will be fishing an area just beyond the Elbow known as; well, guess:
Talk about getting off to a good start:


  • harbisonharbison Posts: 5,772 Admiral
    Saturday morning; our young man is still going strong:

    To say we are hungry would be an understatement.
    Tammy to the rescue:

    Back to work. These deep-water Vermilion Snapper are plentiful, fun the catch, and outstanding eating:

    They grow BIG out here:

  • harbisonharbison Posts: 5,772 Admiral
    Sometimes it gets a 'little' damp:

    A little water won't dampen the spirits of this young lady:

    Topping the scales at 41 pounds, John Martin's huge Gag Grouper is the biggest Gag caught so far this year on the Florida Fisherman ll:

    It's been a long, hard fought night & day. Those 'donkeys' have put a good ole' southern hurting on us:

    A huge thanks to Butch, dock-master & 12 hour night snapper galley cook, for helping John hold up his jackpot winning fish:

    Talk about an honor:

    Catch the action-packed trip video: 

    Which is better, the Middle Grounds or Elbow? 
     Tough question... Great deal more study needed!


  • Bigredtruck58Bigredtruck58 Posts: 1 Greenhorn
    That was a great trip. The Mango bite was a little off Friday night. I think it was due to fishing right after these 2 hurricanes came thru just a day earlier. When the sun came up the AJs were on fire. The biggest on this trip was a little of 50lbs. One huge AJ about 75lbs was lost at the boat. The lady that fought the fish had him on for almost an hour. A lot of those big Middle Ground vermilion's really made the fish box look good. We had to cut the trip a few hours short do to some very bad squalls coming in on us making the ride home a little bumpy 

  • harbisonharbison Posts: 5,772 Admiral
    Thanks for the update. Per John Martin the area fished was not the Grounds, but the Little Elbow. 
    "making the ride home a little bumpy "  Been there; done that:

Sign In or Register to comment.
Magazine Cover

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!


Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

Preview This Month's Issue

Buy Digital Single Issues

Don't miss an issue.
Buy single digital issue for your phone or tablet.

Buy Single Digital Issue on the Florida Sportsman App

Other Magazines

See All Other Magazines

Special Interest Magazines

See All Special Interest Magazines

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get the top Florida Sportsman stories delivered right to your inbox.


Phone Icon

Get Digital Access.

All Florida Sportsman subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now