On The Hook: Our big summer fishing problem
Published 05/16/2013 at 8:36 a.m.
There's a denizen of the deep, preparing to decimate your next deep water fishing trip. He thrives on ambushing the hooked fish you so painstakingly sought, in one fell swoop – snook, permit, cobia et al – all fall to ...
On The Hook: The clean water debacle
Published 05/01/2013 at 11:24 a.m.
If there is one factor that angler's around these parts value is fishing in nice clean and green water. Visibility. The ability for the denizens of the deep to see your proffered bait makes all the difference, since all desirable ...
On The Hook: Tarpon lunacy
Published 04/18/2013 at 12:20 p.m.
Of all the great fish species that ply the salt, the tarpon has engendered a position of eminence especially for our fabled "now" generation; eyes roll and palms sweat when they are even mentioned. They are the Porsche Boxter with ...
On The Hook: What a difference a tide makes
Published 04/03/2013 at 6:21 p.m.
The tide rules. No, we're not talking about the University of Alabama's Crimson variety. We're talking about the daily event, imbedded in our planet's nature, that moves the ocean's volume in two different directions every day. For those of us ...
On The Hook: Lost – 'The storm they had predicted was beginning to rumble'
Published 03/20/2013 at 1:59 p.m.
As you ease away from the marina, you reach across the console and punch a series of numbers into an illuminated keyboard initiating your global positioning system. The attached computer screen kicks into life and in milliseconds you have exact ...
On The Hook: Captain 'Murphy' and the law of averages
Published 03/07/2013 at 8:23 a.m.
You were probably thinking that all charter fishing trips are supposed to go as smooth as silk. After all you are in the hands of a professional who executes his or her duties in a precise and error-free manner. Time ...
On The Hook: Delicatessen fishin'
Published 02/21/2013 at 7:58 a.m.
You're getting ready to go fishing at Lake Wobegone in the middle of the "Heartland" this morning and as you ready your tackle, you know exactly what you're going after. It's either walleye, or maybe largemouth, or even bluegill. No ...
On The Hook: Even the odds
Published 02/06/2013 at 2:36 p.m.
Much too often the fishing trip success is measured by the displayed result. Sometimes its how many; sometimes its how big; and sometimes its how superlative the species caught. Just consider for a moment what the marin
On The Hook: No-see-fish-um
Published 01/23/2013 at 1:12 p.m.
The unseasonably warm weather, weve all been enjoying these past few weeks, does wondrous things. It brings the throngs of our winter residents to the beaches and the pools; it fills the outdoor restaurants to capacity and
On The Hook: Foggy misadventure
Published 01/10/2013 at 12:24 p.m.
Im sure youve noticed that recently some of our mornings have dawned immersed in a blanket of vision obscuring fog. This thick watery haze is the price we pay for these beautiful warm summer like afternoons layered over si
On The Hook: Fishing with references
Published 12/26/2012 at 4:44 p.m.
In this business, youre always waiting for the phone to ring signaling another potential customer. But this call, one evening late this summer, was bizarre to say the least. The caller, after identifying himself, started wi
The 'fishing' hour
Published 11/30/2012 at 3 a.m.
A play on words... maybe not.
On The Hook: Fishing, aka entertainment
Published 11/01/2012 at 4:02 p.m.
Unfortunately, my wife and daughter dont fish cant you put together a trip with some other people for me? Thats the way the phone call began. A fellow, here on holiday, had an angling itch and was trying to ...
On The Hook: Gomer & Associates
Published 10/18/2012 at 1:52 p.m.
A couple of years back, we wrote about Gomer. But when we discovered recently that much has changed in his life, we thought an update of the story would be of interest.Lets start from scratch with a little background uniqu
On The Hook: Birthday fishing
Published 10/04/2012 at 12:56 p.m.
A universal theory that is held sacrosanct among adults is that adding kids to any fishing trip raises the excitement level as well as thebloody pressure. Nothing that happens when the younger generation grabs a rod and reel is ordinary ...
On The Hook: Scoring fishing skills
Published 09/06/2012 at 4:52 p.m.
A thought: Why is it that folks who fashion themselves as proficient backwater anglers never practice at their sport? There they are, decked out in Orvis loops and velcro attire, draped in expensive rods, reels and tackle, c
On The Hook: The French connection
Published 08/09/2012 at 2:08 p.m.
Folks choose a charter boat trip for a variety of reasons. For the hardcore local anglers, its a way to engage in your favorite activity with the assistance and advice of a professional captain that will surely lead you an
On The Hook: Following the rules
Published 07/26/2012 at 11:36 a.m.
Wow you have that many restrictions on fish species here in Florida? Thats the jaw dropping reaction from out-of-state charter customers when you break out the 36 inch law stick ruler that with rules printed on the ba
On The Hook: Goliath gagging
Published 07/12/2012 at 9:32 a.m. 4 Comments
The Morans made reservations for a charter trip the first week in July to coincide with the announced opening of the gaggrouper season. That doesnt sound unusual, right? But how about if they made them last December and
On The Hook: The dolphin dilemma
Published 06/29/2012 at 8:40 a.m.
The bottle nosed dolphins that ply these waters, and call them their domicile, have always been an important adjunct to the pleasure of the fishing experience. Who among us, with rod in hand, wasn't paused when the graceful dolphin surfaced ...
On The Hook: Fishing for the birds
Published 06/14/2012 at 2:48 p.m.
We are truly blessed here in Southwest Florida with the enormous numbers and species of sea birds. There is hardly a day on a backwater charter that rods are not swapped for the camera for a shot of heron in ...
On The Hook: Managing the harvest
Published 06/01/2012 at 10:27 a.m.
Late last year they made a trip to an area just north of us and had an unusual charter experience. Upon arrival and introductions, the captain informed them that they would only be able to take a limited number of ...
On The Hook: The crucial 20
Published 05/17/2012 at 4:38 p.m.
Fishing trips sometimes go for endless hours; but how about the catching? How much of the trip did you really have hot action? I'll submit that those times usually are but a slim portion of the total trip time. Here ...
On The Hook: Fishing secrets and stealth
Published 05/03/2012 at 10:53 a.m.
It’s a scene at a boat ramp anywhere. A guy is cleaning a nice catch and a interested bystander walks up and asks, “Nice fish ... where did you catch them?” The angler turns slowly, obviously annoyed at the intrusion, ...
On The Hook: Grouper travesty
Published 03/22/2012 at 3:29 p.m. 1 Comment
For New Englanders it’s like not having Tom Brady for the last two months of the season. For the Heartlanders it’s like having Arron Rodgers on injured reserve for the two months when then chips are down.
On The Hook: The braided experience
Published 02/10/2012 at 3:52 p.m.
To start, I just may be a member of just a few who see the new era of synthetic braided line as the “devil” when it comes to interfacing with the environment. Until a few years back most fishing lines ...
The ‘72 quart coller’ charter trip
Published 01/28/2012 at 12:24 p.m.
Many times, in the mid-morning warmth of the intoxicating sun, customers will relax from their fishing and make inquiry as to, “how is the fishing here now in comparison to when you started ... better or worse?”
On The Hook: The trouble with Uncle Henry
Published 01/13/2012 at 11:16 a.m.
On most charter trips, after introductions dockside, the question as to “What are you folks looking for today? Wanna do catch and release or maybe take some of your fish home for a meal.” Almost always, nowadays, the taking a ...
On The Hook: Red Tide fishing
Published 12/08/2011 at 2:41 p.m.
It strikes abject terror in the hearts of the unfamiliar. “Red Tide ... do we have to evacuate?” The reaction comes close to that when the media lays the news on the uninitiated ala the evening news. The event takes ...
On the Hook: The tales of ‘Walter’ and sons
Published 11/15/2011 at 12:25 p.m.
Even after surrendering an enormous amount of tackle and effort, we never got close to landing him. The very disappointed couple named the fish “Walter” after the denizen of the deep that eluded Henry Fonda and Billy in the classic ...
On The Hook: Redfish raving
Published 10/13/2011 at 4:14 p.m. 1 Comment
It’s been a fishing run like no other. Redfish, if not the most sought after fish in these parts, is a close second. Only challenger would be the legendary snook. The redfish have always showed here in late September and ...
On The Hook: Shark Tales
Published 09/29/2011 at 2:15 p.m.
On countless occasions, a charter inquiry will include a question that goes something like “ you guys ever catch any sharks down there”? Then, with even a glint that we do, the whole focus of the potential trip goes there. ...
On The Hook: FWAK – ‘Fishing With the Acronym King’
Published 09/15/2011 at 2:47 p.m.
For years I spent my working life in the corporate canyons of management. Aware of the customer and remotely sensitive to their needs but hardly ever hands on. You dealt with their products, their finances and their wants and needs ...
On The Hook: You just can’t outrun ‘em
Published 08/18/2011 at 4:21 p.m.
“The storm front was turning the sky jet black as it approached the island screaming in from the southwest. The accompanying wind was not sneaking; it came racing in as a chilling blast turning wavelets in the river to devouring ...
On The Hook: As-you-go charter fishing
Published 08/04/2011 at 3:46 p.m.
The economic world is changing right before our eyes. Prices for goods and services that once were apparent are now shrouded in extra costs that are added on the tab piecemeal. Want a good example; take a airline flight; on ...
On The Hook: Say no to snook
Published 07/21/2011 at 4:15 p.m. 4 Comments
The concept proposed herein, probably will not meet with abandoned acclaim especially by anglers, but, hopefully, it will evoke a consideration. Let’s start at the beginning. The winter of 2009-2010 was brutally cold here in Southwest Florida. That’s right ...
On The Hook: Lost in fishing
Published 07/07/2011 at 12:29 p.m.
Someone once said, “They named these 10,000 Islands correctly. That’s how many chances you have to get lost back there.” Our sportfishing domain, that stretches over a hundred miles south, east and southeast is one of a kind. The labyrinth ...
On The Hook: Scorched fishing conditions
Published 06/23/2011 at 12:50 p.m. 1 Comment
Ask anyone who has spent at least a few years in these parts – this is a hot late spring. One that most will classify as a “scorcher.” For the dominant causal factors, we could easily look to the lack ...
On The Hook: Shady fishing
Published 05/26/2011 at 1:35 p.m.
You think air temperature is cooking around here ? Take a look at the water! Those insufferable afternoons with the 90 degree heat and the lack of any appreciable rain has driven the Gulf water temperature to heights unknown for ...
On The Hook: Moments of mayhem
Published 05/11/2011 at 2:01 p.m.
I’ll bet you’ve never been on a fishing trip where you got a strike and a landed a lunker on your very first cast and the action continued non-stop to the point of exhaustion, hours later. Me, neither. With rare ...
On The Hook: Second chance
Published 04/28/2011 at 1:56 p.m.
The two buddies had probably dreamed about fishing for sharks ever since they stole away one Saturday afternoon back in ‘75 and watched “Jaws” scaring the bejesus out of themselves. Thirty five years later and still buddies, they planned a ...
On The Hook: Fishing point, counterpoint
Published 03/17/2011 at 5:19 p.m.
“So, how’s the fishin’ ?” has replaced the customary salutation of “hello” for almost anyone caught with a fishing rod in hand. It’s more than a knee jerk action; it’s something that is seriously on folk’s mind. Enmeshed there, over ...
ON THE HOOK: Fishing or entertainment
Published 02/17/2011 at 2:34 p.m.
Excuse the daft question but, do you go fishing to catch fish or for the entertainment? To expound, let’s lay out the premise in detail; Is fishing considered a sport where one strives to lure a piscatorial resident to a ...
On the Hook: Government fishing
Published 02/04/2011 at 3:45 p.m.
You hear little of the effort from the main stream media as the enterprise is well concealed from the general public with but bits and pieces of rhetoric with code names like “catch shares” and “IFQ’s” (Individual Fishing Quotas) slipping ...
ON THE HOOK: Government fishing
Published 02/03/2011 at 2:05 p.m.
It keeps getting worse and closer to invading our angling realities. I’m talking about the mammoth, all encompassing forces of the federal government in cahoots with the forces assembled under the banner of “environmentalists” et al, who are continuing to ...
On the Hook: The master tangler
Published 01/21/2011 at 8:30 a.m.
The mainstay customers on this trip are two couples from the Northeast that exit the winter cold after the holidays and spend two months here in the sunshine and warmth. We’ve had good fun trips over the years running down ...
On the hook: Christmas gift for a fishing nut
Published 01/03/2011 at 10:18 a.m.
Settled in a booth in a local coffee shop and cradling a cup of steaming hot coffee we both began to warm and un-layer. Somehow the chat got around to the upcoming Christmas season and focused on the barrage of ...
On the Hook: The fishing trip extraordinaire
Published 12/17/2010 at 2:37 p.m. 1 Comment
As the event faded and the group dispersed, Ted made mention to a few stragglers “that this was such an unusual event, heartwarming and hilarious at the same time, that it should be ‘written up’ so it could be shared ...
On the Hook: Fishing no-nos
Published 12/02/2010 at 8:52 a.m.
But there are a few behaviors in the world of fishing that fail the “forgiveness” test; you will pay the price for these miscues. If you’ve spent time on the water, you have either observed these endeavors or been the ...
On the Hook: Fly fishing with a little twist
Published 11/03/2010 at 8:25 a.m.
“Do you do fly?” In busier times, I might have directed the questioner to a competitor more attuned to fly fishing. But this time the answer was affirmative with a disclaimer that; ”boat is not ideal for fly, but certainly ...