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PC Offshore 06-04-11

FSFA Offshore Slam. Alan, his daughter Kaci and myself
started early out of Port Canaveral (4:30), and had lines in the water a few
minutes after 6:00am near the 20 mile buoy. Within minutes the first fish was
on and in the boat. It was small, but a keeper Mahi none the less. This seemed
a good sign. There were already a handful of boats in the area, so we made our
way by the buoy for a few passes, and then headed for our target area.
A half hour after passing the buoy, lines went off. It was a double hookup this
time, with Alan and Kaci working their fish in while I cleared
lines. This was her fist Mahi. 2 more fish in the boat, and high hopes of more to
come. It was a while as we worked North before the next hookup, but a large
Phin had the drag peeling, a few acrobatic moves, and seconds after I got the
rod in hand, it was over, hook out. This was likely a 25lb fish, and what would
turn out to be a possible 3rd place fish. Another half hour of nothing and a
repeat performance of the last lost fish.

Lines stayed in and patiently we continued. Radio traffic was light, and many
reported little or no fish boated, so we were doing OK. Again drag started
peeling and it was my turn on the fight. This fish did not take to the air at first,
and had speed, so we were really hoping for Wahoo. This was the biggest fish
of the day, and we cleared lines finally getting it to the boat. It was a clean
catch and release Sailfish. Not a tournement fish, but a good bonus catch. I
may have caught the smallest Mahi, but at least I could claim the big fish of
the boat for the day.

The balance of the trolling was fairly quite. We went 3 for 5 on Mahi, 1 Sail,
and had 4 mystery fish kill the ballyhoo without the courtesy of taking the hook.
We drifted bottom a few times hoping for a quick Grouper, but did not dedicate
much time to it, and the results showed. With time running out, we made a slow
troll at 8A hoping for a King, or to see a Cobia but Nada. Dropping to the
bottom however, and Sea Bass were on the line within 5 seconds.
Back to port we went. We decided to go through weigh in in case the junior
category was light on participation. There proved to be 3 fish posted ahead
of ours, so to the cleaning tables we went. With a couple gallon bags full
of Mahi and a first Mahi catch, it proved to be a nice day on the water, though
the real prize would have been..... well the prize money! Maybe next time.

Captain Henry


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