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New Year's Fishing Trip Report

Hey Everyone! I am back from our 2 days in Everglades city. Had a good time despite issues with the boat rental place.... again. Skip this paragraph if you don't feel like hearing my rant.. just go to the fishing report below it.. :wink

Just a quick warning, my first trip to Choko I rented from Miller's or Glades Haven Marina (same thing) Boat broke down, they only charged me a half day, but I had a horrible time with the little ones (first time in a boat and they were a little nervous) So for the last 5 months I was renting from Everglades Boat Rentals without a problem. But I was going to stay the night at Glades Haven, so I thought I would give them another chance, first day boat kept breaking down, wouldn't start, get up on plane, etc, drove me crazy, this trip I also brought along my 6 year old for his first chokoloskee trip, so now its 3 kids in a boat with me, and the boat is giving us a hard time. I get back to the dock and told the guy there (who will remain nameless, for now) and asked him for a different boat for my 2nd day, since I am with small children and its dangerous with the current and many other factors being in a boat that won't start, or stalls, etc., he told me he didn't have another boat, they were all rented, but he checked the boat and everything was okay. So, next day, get out into the channel anchor up and fished a new spot for a second, tried starting the boat up to move and nothing... we were stuck.. out in the channel for a while, thank God we were in the channel, so a boat passed by and offered help, he had reception so we called the marina and they took around an hour to pick us up, he came and brought another boat (which I thought he said wasn't available) we moved our things and he told me because of the inconvenience he was only going to charge me for a half a day for both days, so I thought that was fair, we fished the rest of the day in the newer boat, even though this boat had some issues as well, I was still able to get the kids around... get back to the dock and he charged me for 2 full days, his reasoning.. the boat was broke down so he lost money not being able to rent it, so he HAD to charge me the full price??? what???? There were people around, I don't like making scenes, so I just said this was my last time ever renting there. YOU SHOULD STAY AWAY FROM GLADES HAVEN MARINA just a warning!

Despite the issues, I still was determined to get the kids on some fish, so we hit a few spots I knew would produce.
I wanted to get them on trout and it was a pretty good bite. But First thing is first.. had to get my 6 year old his first fish in Chokoloskee!
and of course... its a catfish... lol

Next, he was getting those trout!

My other boys were catching trout and other fish as well. When we were stuck in the channel my son hooked into a crazy big redfish... but the man in the grey suit was wanting a little taste... so that didn't work out well. Also, he got, what I think is a gag grouper, looks nothing like a goliath to me. Tell me what you guys think. here is also my first video, just shot from two clips, shows the redfish and the grouper:

Next day was lots of good action after we got the other boat, I made the best of my time I could.

Another big cat

We were getting a lot of what I don't consider inshore species VERY INSHORE.. lol

A big trout!

I need some ID's on the next couple of fish:
Grouper... what kind?


All in all, even with all the problems and lost time.. kids had fun.. their spirits are always so amazing that we can learn a lot from them.. I wish I could have taken more video and photos but watching over the kids was work enough not including the boat issues! Thanks guys and I hope this report helps somehow!



  • lemaymiamilemaymiami Posts: 4,450 Captain
    Nothing like fishing with kids... and anyone that takes the time and patience to get them out there deserves praise...

    Next, those rentals take a beating and your story doesn't surprise me at all...

    Lastly, I never wanted to own a boat at all - but I could never get anyone to lend me their's... so I learned to re-build and re-rig old boats...
    That was only six or seven boats ago....
    Tight Lines
    Bob LeMay
    (954) 435-5666
  • pjstevkopjstevko Posts: 513 Officer
    great report and it looks like you got the full Choko experience with lots of variety!

    Those grouper are gags, goliaths tails are more rounded on the top and bottom edges.
  • charlemagnecharlemagne Posts: 191 Officer
    Thanks so much Capt. Bob, I don't want to own my own boat either.. but getting these guys out there to me is very crucial, I have looked for decent boats but just not sure what to get, I have six kids.. and they all are crazy about fishing! lol And I totally understand the beating those boats take.. it was their customer service that disappointed me. Six or seven boats ago huh.. well I know who to give a call if I have a re-rigging job to do.. :wink

    Pjstevko: Thanks a lot for the comment! I am glad those were gags, I am getting better at my grouper ID now, but with Juveniles it gets tricky!!

    Thanks guys!
  • MangroovinMangroovin Naples, FLPosts: 147 Deckhand
    Boat broken down and charged for 2 FULL days. Welcome to "Everglades Reasoning 101" LOL.

    Glad you were able to have a nice time regardless. :)
  • nightflynightfly Posts: 505 Officer
    It's all about the kids having fun. Good job
  • T RawT Raw Posts: 28 Greenhorn
    Using live bait or artificial?
  • charlemagnecharlemagne Posts: 191 Officer
    Thanks for all the replies everyone, as you all know from my monthly reports I LOVE getting my kids out there and feel it is important for them to have these experiences on the water, hopefully camping soon as well. Hopefully others can benefit from my reports as well. As for bait, it was mainly live shrimp on jigs or under popping corks, most of the trout, especially the big ones came from DOA's, just toss them under mangroves at high tide with a good current and you never know what you'll get.. this trip, the hard baits didn't work, had a few cut offs on yozuris from blues and macks, but after that we only caught them on live shrimp.. weird.. but the kids had their rods bent most of the day (when we weren't dealing with a broken down boat) And I want to thank the nice guy in the catamaran hull (nice boat btw) who had signal and called the marina for us, I love boaters and fishermen, almost every boat that passed stopped to see if we needed help.. so a big THANK YOU to that guy if you are reading this!

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