Howdy from NEFL! My family and I are headed to Destin for a week at the end of July. I have a 23' CC, and am accustomed to 20-30 mile runs out of JAX for offshore fun. I noticed on Navionics that there are a lot of wrecks and reefs around Destin.
Here in JAX, the standard day is run out early and net a boatload of pogies and then troll or bottom-fish the offshore wrecks for kings, snapper (on the 5 days a year they give us there), cobia, and sundry other species.
What's the standard offshore trip look like here? I searched the forum for "destin" already and saw lots of people asking for shore spots or charters, but didn't see much in the way of fishing reports or thoughts on the spots nearshore or offshore. I'd love to get into some grouper, AJs, mahi or tuna, but not sure what depths to target (you have to get 40+ miles out of JAX for grouper and triggers).
I'd appreciate any insight you guys have. I'll have all of those public numbers, but I'm more interested in the baits used (pilchards out there?), how they're acquired (cast nets or bait boats?), and if artificials are often used. I'm just starting into slow-pitch jigging, and that seems to be an effective technique pretty much everywhere.
Thanks in advance, and I'll see y'all in a few months!