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Fishing the Elbow before Isaac !

Fishing the Elbow before Isaac:
Three P.M. Friday, August 24, seas are calm, skies are clear. Madeira Beach is being enjoyed by hundreds:
How about some real excitement?
Well! We have a mission to accomplish. Elbow, here we come.
Joe goes over every little detail:
We will be fishing the Elbow before Isaac. Will the wrath of this monster help or hurt us? Who knows? Sure feels good knowing we have that big old Cat, Florida Fisherman, under us. We are confident, and so very hungry. Chef Tammy to the rescue with cheese meat-ball sandwiches. Good in no way describes this masterpiece.
Mister Matt Corita is fishing next to me. Matt is using 30 # test spinning tackle for mangrove snapper. Hold on! That's no mango. The brute is pulling like a freight train. Somehow Matt manages to turn the battling fish and head him towards the surface. OH No! Down he goes again. Matt tightens down the drag as much as this light tackle will allow. This must be a grouper. Once again Matt is able to keep the mighty fish from reaching his home. Boy! 160' sure is a long way up. Then we see color. Hurry! the gaff, get the gaff. What a prize.
Matt is on a roll:
Captain Brian, Captain Mark Hubbard is off today, is so proud of us:
Now that's a nice king:
Not a bad start:
Really glad gag season is open:
Mister James Horne, Clearwater, Florida, is thrilled:
Here comes another gag:
Mister Sung Yi, (L) Jacksonville, Beach Florida, and his son, Gene Yi, love to catch gags:
Now there is another nice gag grouper:
Batter dipped fish. Tammy you are a dream come true:
Nap time. We sure do appreciate those air conditioned bunks. Note the cover & sweater. They are a must even during the middle of the day:
The fishing is really slow, but we are still catching fish:
Mrs. Kara Mcclure, our first mate, Will's wife, sure knows how to fish.
It's rough but that 72' cat gives us a steady platform from which to fish:
Will, you can be proud of this woman, this wife. Gag # 2:
Even a king fish. What a woman. Will, you had better hold on to her; she is a real winner:
Dinner time, Chef Tammy time. Let's start with a green garden fresh salad. I will have ranch dressing:
Then the masterpiece! Black beans and yellow rice with chicken. Hold on, what kind of seasoning has Tammy come up with now? That's different! Don't tell anyone her secret ingredients. To Mojo Sauce Tammy adds fresh garlic & onions. Only fresh is good enough for Tammy:
During the heat of the day the fishing has been really slow. hopefully we will have a good evening bite. now that looks good:
Mister Chris Wright could not get away from the American red snapper:
We quickly vent and release all fish we cannot keep. See you next year.
Fishing the Elbow before Isaac was slower than what we have become accustomed to, however, we still had a nice catch.
Kara (L), Captain Brian, Kara's husband Will, and Joe. What a team!
Matt had one heck of a day. Man! That AJ is heavy, hope he wins the jackpot:
Too bad kings are not in the jack pot.
Matt walks away with jack pot money:
And the snapper money winner:
Now there is some big gags. Hold on! They are not in the jack pot. Next time!
And the grouper winner:
Fishing the Elbow before Isaac was not as productive as fishing has been for us. By the middle of the week thirty foot waves are due to hit the Grounds & Elbow. The fish will leave their 'pot holes' and be pinned against ledges, they will be more concentrated and easier to find. For the next few weeks fishing should be fantastic. We did not do well on the AJ's this weekend. We will be looking for the biggest pin fish we can find. Big pins mean big AJ's. Come next weekend the fish will be in smaller areas and hungry. And, to make things even better, the full of the moon is August 31, 9:57 A.M. We will be fishing the day after the full moon. Mangrove snapper should be on fire. Eleven spots are still open on the Florida Fisherman. Spot # 4 on the stern is still available, won't be for long. Even some downstairs AC bunks nave not been taken. We need all the help we can get.
Bob Harbison
Florida Outdoor Writers Association


  • PermitchaserPermitchaser Posts: 871 Officer
    very nice massacre.
  • harbisonharbison Posts: 5,772 Admiral
    We had a great time. By our standards fishing was very slow. Remember that 'massacre' was from 20 hours of fishing & 40 people.
  • IGotHookedIGotHooked Posts: 7 Greenhorn
    I truly enjoy reading your reports and looking at the pictures. I am flying down on Wednesday from New York to fish my first 39hr trip on the florida fisherman ii on the 31st. I fished the yankee capts in key west on a 3 day trip eailer this year and now I am hooked on florida overnight fishing. As of now NOAA is predicting 10 to 15kt South Wind with 5 to 7 foot seas. What are the chances we will get off shore? Also I ordered 3 doz pin fish from hubbards will this be enough for 20hrs of fishing. Should I also pickup any other bait, live shrimp, squid, sardine? Any and all advice is welcomed as I am still learing about fishing florida. Thanks Andy.
  • harbisonharbison Posts: 5,772 Admiral
    So glad you like what I do. I am having a blast doing it. Knowing people like my reports & pictures makes every minute spent well worth while.
    10 to 15kt winds will not stop us. 5 to 7 foot seas would be rough; however, the Florida Fisherman is a 72' long 25' wide catamaran. It takes rough water well.
    3 dozen pin fish is plenty. I really do not think any other bait will be needed. The boat provides frozen Spanish sardines & squid, both are excellent baits.
    Suggestions: Bring a 30-40 pound test outfit for mangrove snapper. We will be targeting them at night & well as Saturday evening. Bring a heavy outfit, 80-100 pound test for grouper & Amber jacks.
    We use 6 oz. sinkers most of the time. Good idea to bring a few 8 oz. just in case.
    Be sure to bring a pillow & blanket. You will need the blanket even during the day.
    Hope this helps. Any questions, please do not hesitate to ask. Bob
  • XafXaf Posts: 1,132 Officer
    It's hard to predict what will happen with the weather this far in advance. That's one of the bummers of not living local and having to schedule flights, etc. For what it's worth, my guess is that the trip will go. Three dozen pin fish should be enough if you fish for snappers also. If you plan on fishing live bait the whole time you might consider another dozen. (anymore would overload your live well.) The boat provides sardines and squid wings for bait. The sardines are all you need for mangroves. The grouper will bite on them sometimes also. The squid is good for smaller reef fish. You might consider bringing a couple chicken rigs with small hooks (1/0). You can catch beeliners (vermillion snappers) and keep them in your live well for amber jack bait. I personnally would not but anything else.

    I may have been on the YC trip you were on. Were you with a couple other guys from NY? BTW: I went on the YC this past weekend (with Issac bearing down on us). It was a tough pick. Very few muttons or groupers were caught. We came in after the first day and i didn't have anything but a stringer of yellow tails.

    If you have more questions. Post them or PM me.
  • IGotHookedIGotHooked Posts: 7 Greenhorn
    Thanks for the replys andvice and suggestions. looking forward to fishing this trip. I am planning to fish live pin fish the entire trip, so I might try to catch some vermillion when im running low. Bob, I think I have read every one of your reports for the past year, keep up the good work I do appreciate your reports, and it makes me want to fly down to FL when ever I can to fish.
    Xaf, sorry to hear the YC trip did not go too well. The YC trip I was on ended coming back in a day early because we ran out of space to put fish, everyone just about had a three day limit. One of the best fishing trips I have ever been on in my life. I think it was just good timing because the trip the week before did not do so well. Thats fishing for ya.
    Thanks again Andy
  • PermitchaserPermitchaser Posts: 871 Officer
    harbison wrote: »
    We had a great time. By our standards fishing was very slow. Remember that 'massacre' was from 20 hours of fishing & 40 people.

    it was a complement my friend ,i wish i would have been there.
  • PermitchaserPermitchaser Posts: 871 Officer
    rice n beans looks good too.
  • Reel-LuckyReel-Lucky Posts: 3,487 Moderator
    That's an impressive job getting that Gag to the boat on 30 pound gear. That Mang the Capt. is holding is a beast!
    Thanks Bob.
  • harbisonharbison Posts: 5,772 Admiral
    Complement: Thank you sir. Guess I am becoming a little gun shy. On another forum I mentioned that we caught a 50+ pound black grouper & a huge amber jack on legal size mango snapper. In no way did I realize this was against the law. I have been severely criticized for reporting this. I thought that, other than selling fish, as long as we do not go over our limit, the fish we fight for are ours to do with as we please.
    Rice & beans: They had that special Tammy touch!
    Gags on 30# equipment: Don't know how many we lost. If you use heavy tackle, forget about mangrove snapper, 30# mango test, forget about grouper, at least most of the time.
    Beast of a mango: Sure was! Captain Brian was so proud. Our Captains & mates are 'hands on.' They are always there to help out, to pose with our fish. They are as proud as we are. Bob
  • Go SkinnyGo Skinny Posts: 116 Officer
    Nice report and appreciate it.
    Fishing is not just a hobby but a lifestyle
  • harbisonharbison Posts: 5,772 Admiral
    Thank you sir. That means a great deal to me. Bob
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