What a day! For starters, we have finally been blessed with some nice weather this week, and today was no exception. Perfectly slick calm, with just enough NE wind to keep the temp reasonable.
We had an offshore trip today, so we started off looking for a little meat for the cooler. It didn’t take long… We had a triple header of gaffer dolphins shortly after lines in, and followed that up with a double header wahoo of which we caught one.
We went about 30 minutes without a bite before we missed a sailfish, and then caught a neat fish called a rainbow runner (tasty).
At that point we had some good meat for the cooler, and our folks wanted to look for something larger. We switched out to some larger marlin lures, and went offshore into the deeper parts of the gulf stream looking for a billfish. Around 270 fathoms we had a double header white marlin come in and hooked one. Unfortunately we ended up jumping him off a few minutes into the fight.
The current was just right, so we decide to make a daytime drop for swordfish. This is where the day gets interesting. A few minutes after dropping the 12″ squid bait, I marked a good fish on the fish finder that I thought was a swordfish. We cranked the bait up to the depth he was in, and sure enough minutes later we were tight.
For the first 30 minutes of the battle we didn’t know what we had. It could be a sword, it could be a shark, it could be anything else. We gained most of our line back, and were about 30′ from being able to grab the 8lb weight we use to take the bait to the bottom when we finally saw the fish. It semi-jumped about 100 yards behind the boat. Everyone just turned and looked at one another mouths wide open. This was bar none the largest billfish any of us had ever had hooked. A once in a lifetime 800+lb swordfish.
Skip ahead 3 hours, and the tug of war is still going on. This fish had been up within 100 yards of the boat 4 times, and all 4 times had taken off and gone all the way back down over 1000′ immediately after. Just a crazy strong fish.
On one of these runs the fish actually messed up the drag on our reel when it overheated. Due to the drag being in a bad place, and the sun getting low on the horizon, we decided that the next time we got the leader up on the rod, we were going to put the heat to her and either get it or break it off trying.
It was 30 minutes later when we finally inched her back up to the leader (50′ leader) and the mate started wiring her up. We managed to get her up to within 10′ of the boat, but because of where the fish was laying, we were not able to get a good harpoon shot. After about 2 minutes of having her right at the boat, she decided to head back to the deep, and there was nothing we could do to stop her; even after 4 hours of fighting. She lives to fight another day.
Many folks ask why I do what I do. Why go through the harsh weather, low income, hard work, and long hours that it takes to run an offshore charter service. This my friends, is why. You NEVER KNOW when you will find an absolute sea monster roaming the gulf stream.
Until next time my friend…
Had a great crew on board for an Ocracoke offshore trip on Sunday.
We stopped on some weedlines on our way out and caught a few gaffer dolphin (mahi), before heading to the deep to try for a swordfish.
We ended up having two bites, but unfortunately we lost a really nice swordfish right near the boat. Thats fishing!
On our way in the crew wanted to try some bottom fishing so we stopped and caught some snapper and triggerfish.
Beautiful day on the water. We have some days available over the next couple weeks, so give us a call and lets go fishing!
Finally had some beautiful weather this weekend and were able to make it offshore on Saturday and Sunday. Great to see the bluewater again after lots of wind and blown out trips!
Variety was the name of the game both days. Saturday the we caught a few blackfins and dolphin trolling first thing, and then the group decided they wanted to do some bottom fishing. We spent the rest of the day fishing the bottom and ended up with a great catch of triggerfish, tilefish, and vermillion snapper.
On Sunday my crew said they wanted to catch “big fish” so we spent the day looking for larger pelagic species; some days things just work out! We found some beautiful grass lines and were able to catch 5 nice gaffer dolphins, and then went looking for some variety. As we pushed offshore we managed one really nice yellowfin, a half dozen blackfins, and then finished up with a double header wahoo!
Other than the offshore game our nearshore trips have been very productive. We had a half day wreck trip on Friday and had good amberjack and king mackerel fishing. On our nearshore trips the spanish mackerel and blue fishing has been excellent.
Pictured is a beautiful shot of the full moon setting over silver lake harbor as we departed the marina yesterday morning.
It was a beautiful slick calm day on the ocean Saturday. A little rainy, but i’ll take a calm ocean and rain any day over rough seas!
Good fishing too. We started off catching some blackfin tuna in about 40 fathoms, before pushing off deeper looking for a billfish. The marlin bite was slow, so we dropped down and tried out luck for a swordfish in 1900′ of water. On the first drop we got bit about 10 minutes after hitting the bottom. It didn’t come tight so we jigged the bait up and down for a few minutes and the fish came back and we hooked up this time.
It took about 30 minutes to get him to the boat, but we ended up with a nice swordfish for our group. They are such neat fish.
On the way in we stopped and did some bottom fish and ended up with a great catch of triggerfish and snapper.
Great Video! https://youtu.be/LXXkvWuNRMI
We were offshore today, and man was it fun. It was one of those days when the ocean was a alive with activity. A big eddy of deep blue gulf stream water pushed in close to Ocracoke, and with it came lots of fish.
We spent most of the day out hunting a big marlin. We did see a couple of marlin, but never connected unfortunately. We ended the day coming in to get some meat for the cooler; 23 blackfin tuna and several nice gaffer dolphins.
Inshore the spanish mackerel bite has been really good, along with a few kings and still a few cobia hanging around.
We had offshore charters Thursday – Sunday and enjoyed some good fishing. It wasn’t on fire, but it was steady every day.
On Thursday we ended up with 3 wahoo, 2 yellowfin tuna, 1 blackfin tuna, 6 rainbow runners, and a nice catch of snapper and triggerfish; lots of good eating!
Friday turned out ROUGH and we ended up not going. Saturday the trolling bite slowed so we went to the bottom and caught a couple hundred pounds of snapper and triggers.
On Sunday we had a tough crew who really had a big time in rough conditions. We didn’t have a ton of bites, but we had a great time. Ended up with 1 nice yellowfin and 6 gaffer dolphins. We got hit by 5 yellowfins at once, but someone managed to only catch 4 of them. Some days it just happens like that!
On the nearshore front the spanish mackerel bite remains red hot, and there are a few cobia trickling by. Still not a big push of cobia for us, but enough to get a shot or two per half day.
We have days available in June and July, so give us a call and lets go fishing!
We have been doing a lot of half-day trips this week, along with several evening sunset cruises. The spanish mackerel bite has been fantastic, and we have seen several cobia. Hopefully we will get a new push of cobia here this week.
Ernest Doshier on the Gecko was offshore the last couple of days and reported outstanding gaffer dolphin fishing.
The photo is of a beautiful full moon rise over the Ocracoke lighthouse during one of our sunset cruises.