Thomas came back with his Calcutta and he had me deck for a mangrove snapper trip. I had told him that type of trip is a lot of work but I had no idea how much work was ahead of me. At the first stop there were 2 boats on the rig I targeted so I went to the other part of this double rig. We did not stay long. The water was dirty and it was moving fast. I moved to another near by and nothing looked good. My third choice we found some nice snapper but no mangrove. The water was still rushing and dirty.
I made a choice to run past a few in line and hit one that has been producing somewhat. That may have been a bit of a mistake but I will never find out. As we were running we saw a skid floating. Under it were some triple tail that we could not get to bite. There was a lone mahi that took our bait and joined the red snapper in the cooler. It was a small one but enough for a snack.
Once at our targeted rig Another boat was there and getting a few. We set in and I started working. we had 3 kids and 3 adults all trying to find some mangrove. There were a lot of Bermuda Chubs stealing out bait which made it hard to get a steady bite on the mangroves. We picked away at the mangroves. Most of them were good size and 2 0r 3 I measured but they were all keepers. This was the biggest of the day and the biggest I had so far this year.
Around noon the winds were picking up. We decided to head back and see if we could get a few more red snapper and call it. I stopped at one of the rigs I had run past earlier. The dirty water had moved out to it by now but there were mangroves and we did add another 1 or 2. It was getting hard to stand on the front and cast for the mangroves and I was starting to worry about somebody falling off. All we found deep were sharks so we did not waste time. After 3 in a row, one about 8 feet, I was out of there. As we moved further in near where we started in the morning the water was chocolate and choppy. There was a storm was north of us near Venice. We were able to avoid the storm and although not any limits we still ended up with a nice board of fish.
There have been 3 of the 8 times I have been on a Calcutta boat in rough water and once again I have to say it handled very well. The kids rode up front without any problem until I hit the shallows and then they moved to the middle of the boat. Never had to ride the back end for comfort.
Life is Good.
Fishing is not a matter of life or death. It's more important than that.
CAPT HOOP -- OUR FREEDOM