florida keys sailfish

2-3-13 Offshore fishing in Islamorada

We’ve had great weather here the past couple of days while fishing in Islamorada. The temperatures have been from the Mid 60’s to the Low 70’s and the sun has been out for most of each day. I had John and his dad out on the Bn’M, down from New York for a couple of days of Islamorada Fishing. Today we started out by catching bait, including cigar minnows and ballyhoo and then headed out just past the reef and put the kites up for sailfish. We also put a bottom rod down, which was great idea because after about 30 minutes we got a bite and John caught a fat 14 lb mutton snapper! Great way to start out the day. After that I went back in the tuna tower and headed just inside the reef to look for some sails since we didn’t have any bites on the kites. After about 20 minutes I came across a big sting ray and there was a school of cobia following him. We caught 4 or 5 fish, all just under legal size to keep, but still some good action. After that we went out to a wreck and caught a handful of king mackerel. John then told me he was happy with what we had and he really wanted to focus on trying to get a sailfish. It didn’t take long and we found a sailfish up shallow in 30′ of water chasing a school of ballyhoo, but he didn’t want anything to do with our bait. We saw a couple more sailfish the next few hours and most of them would look at the bait, but wouldn’t eat it. Finally at about 2 p.m. we found a triple header of sailfish up in 25′ of water, and we made a good cast and one inhaled a ballyhoo. After about a 10 minute fight John released a 40 lb sailfish. We called it a day and headed in after that. Yesterday we missed a sailfish right off the bat and then John hooked one and fought it for about 10 minutes. The fish sounded and then came up jumping and unfortunately he threw the hook while jumping around. We did catch a couple porgy for dinner, and had some action with a big Barracuda and bonita. On the way home we came across a school of cobia as well and released a few short fish and then caught one keeper, a healthy 25 lber! All in all the fishing hasn’t been easy, but we’ve been working hard each day and putting together some decent catches on our offshore fishing charters in Islamorada!

Capt. Nick Stanczyk