Red Grouper

I took advantage of the calm seas yesterday morning, and ran out of New Pass to about 100’ on a grouper hunt. The bite was immediate - but there were quite a few small red grouper attacking the bait. After weeding through and venting the shorts, and a few sharks feeding on the bottom, I was able to hit a limit of red grouper in about an hour and a half. All fish were caught while drifting over an area of ledges and hard bottom. Fishing live pinfish and squid, the larger fish seemed to prefer a jumbo sized pinfish.

I took along a spinning reel spooled with 30lb mono. Pretty amazing experience – I had forgotten about the amount of stretch in mono, especially in deeper water. There were a couple of times when it felt like there was a hit, but it took several cranks of the reel to feel the pull, and confirm that a fish was on. If I had any doubts about mono versus braid, yesterday was a conversion day for braid – I can sometimes be a little (very?) slow on the uptake.

Another revelation yesterday. In the past when drifting through this fairly large area, I had marked different locations where fish were caught, thinking that there were some small ledges surrounded by hard bottom. After zigzagging through the different marks when resetting the drifts, it turns out that there is one very long shelf (300 yards?) that connects all the marks. I didn’t explore the full extent of the shelf, but it could be a lot longer.

Every fishing trip is a learning experience. I guess the learning never ends until you kick the bucket …. Or maybe there is a big salt water ocean filled with giant tuna up in the great beyond.

Replies

  • nuclearfishnnuclearfishn Posts: 8,356 Admiral
    Good to see someone got out there. I'm kicking myself for not getting up early on Sunday and heading out. If you just looking for red grouper you can find all you want in any where from 60-70 foot this time of year. With the price of gas I try to keep the trips short as possible.
  • perlman1234perlman1234 Posts: 1,449 Officer
    Glad to see someone was one the fish. For some reason I found my spots baron on sat. Tried 105-120 and really there was nothing happening. I did however notice more boats than usual.
  • BluefinBluefin Posts: 115 Officer
    Good to see someone got out there. I'm kicking myself for not getting up early on Sunday and heading out. If you just looking for red grouper you can find all you want in any where from 60-70 foot this time of year. With the price of gas I try to keep the trips short as possible.

    I am planning to start looking for grouper a bit closer now that the cooler weather is setting in. The offshore water temp yesterday was 82 degrees. But I am wondering why I hit a lot of shorts, when over the summer at this location, keepers were more prevalent. I am trying to better understand the movements of the bottom fish. One fish that drives me loco around here is flounder. This time of year I think the flounder are starting to gather in the inlets and beaches preparing to spawn offshore. But during the rest of the year, it is pretty much hit or miss for me, and I love to catch flounder.
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