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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just thought I'd give you guys a little update on the surf fishing. Been hitting the beach and fishing for an hour or so before dark. Lots of small bait fish grouped up in the surf. Been catching a bunch of spanish and gar on small spoons and crystal minnows. The gar really surprised me, I've never got into them while fishing down here. Just a few big ones on the Outer Banks. These were about the same size as the spanish, a pound or two. Highlight of the evening: My bro was reeling in a spanish and right when he got him into the surf, a pig snook started following it. This sucker was HUGE! I tossed a yo zuri minnow at him, he quickly turned off the spanish and onto my bait, but never struck, just lazily swam behind it. Fired at him a few more times before he swam back under and out of sight. Awesome sight for sure, would have gone 20+ for sure. Besides that, picked up a few cudas on the boat not too far offshore and lost a sail a little farther off. Baits kind of hard to find. Really have to work at it. The water temp has been HOT. Just outside the inlet was 80 degrees. Good luck!
 

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Which beach..

..are you fishing?

I was up there Friday and the beach north of Waveland was dead.

Lots of lady fish crashing minnows on the Mosquito Bridge, visible tarpon & snook, but all had lockjaw.

I'll be back up later this week through the weekend and would really like some fresh spanish for the broiler!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hey Cerberus,
I fish just south of you at Jensen Beach Park, next to the abandoned Holiday Inn. Usually produces something each time out, except tonight. Too much grass to fish. The spanish are definitely out there. Hope you hit them hard!
 

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Nate if you have a chance to get on a boat and fish the inlet do it. I dove it on Saturday and it was loaded with 1000's of snook. Almost all of them over slot (doesn't matter anyway since they are out of season). There were several boats fishing off the north jetty about 100-200ft off of where it makes a L shape and everyone tossing whitebait was hooked up. The tarpon are cruising early and most fish we saw were in the 75-150lb range. I could tell you what else we saw (and a few we took home) but you probably wouldn't believe me. Let's just say it is worth soaking a bait.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Fin&Scale,
I was on the boat Saturday north of the jetty fishing the reef. We caught up a few blue runners and were drifting. Ran into a few cobia but couldnt get them to bite. Ive been hearing about the tarpon and witnessed all that snook madness but havent tried it yet. I saw a few boats diving on the north jetty, were you one of them? Wont have a chance to get out on the boat until the weekends, but I hit the beach every night. You're definitely getting me pumped up about this coming weekend, maybe bait will be more abundant. And yes, I want to know what else you saw!
 

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Saw a cubera that probably went 70lbs (very wily and as soon as I realized it wasn't a jewfish it saw me and hauled ass). Saw a school of gags of about seven fish several times with most of them over 20lbs....very skittish and would not tolerate our presence. We boated 4 cuberas between 13-25lbs. Missed several more cuberas in the 20+ range. Those were the highlights...not including several tarpon and the reef shark that came looking for a free meal on multiple occasions (close enough to touch).

The inlet and structure near it is lousy with greysuits (bull and reef sharks), the current rips and I don't think anyone in the treasure coast knows what a dive flag is....all this means that it is not a place for the feint of heart or breath hold divers with limited experience. It is rarely this loaded with fish or has water calm enough or with enough visibility to brave while freediving but when it is right it is magical. We were one of the several boats diving near the inlet. We were in my buddies yellow center console 22ft Mako. Later we did the offshore wrecks. Ended up with about 150lbs of fish between 3 of us. The gags are holed up in deep cracks (70ft+) on the offshore natural bottom.

PS I saw a linesider at the inlet that was easily 50lbs. I caught a 43lb snook H&L when I was in high school so I know what a really big one looks like. When I say big I mean a fish that is over 50" but less than 60". The numbers of snook in the inlet is incredible.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I believe you 100% man, we have caught a number of grouper and smaller cuberas in the inlet, but nothing closd to your size. We decided not the fish the rocks because of all the divers, that will be my first stop saturday morning! Werent able to anchor either, straightened it out a few trips ago but that should be fixed today. I know there are some pig snook around, I have been seeing them, just not catching them! Hope that changes this weekend and I will make sure to bring some big baits with me.

Did you see any bait holding at the inlet when you were there? We have struggled catching bait early, they seem to only want to show up in the afternoon. And I'm just guessing the snook arent being too picky.
 

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The only bait at the inlet were blue runners there were also huge schools of glass minnow. I have not seen any spanish sardine or menhaden there yet this year. The whitebait was stacked on some of the offshore stuff but that is about a three mile run. There were live bait boats near Sandsprit park in the morning last Saturday so if you don't mind spending a few bucks that might be your best bet. Also I think the best time to target the cubes by H&L would be at night with cut bait & chum (although I am sure you will have more than the occasional cut off from the sharks). I don't think you could get a livie past the snook so cut bait might be the better option. Another thing to try is the south jetty. We would dive it (and we have) but boat traffic can be quite perilous there and although we have probably seen more cubera & gags there than anywhere else we are not willing to continue risking diving it because of all of the manatee carvers that come screaming out of the inlet. The best rocks on the south jetty are about 50-100ft off of the southernmost point....huge boulders and undercut caves that hold all sorts of good fish.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
This is all good info man, its awesome to have a divers perspective on the jetty. I ended up going for an hour last night and the snook were thick on live baits. Bait was easy at the the buoy. We checked out all sides of the jetty, but the outside of the south jetty was scaring us with the tide going out and depth dropping off quickly. Lots of hiding places for big fish though. We stayed on the inside of the south and it was insane. Snook EVERYWHERE. Got crowded so decided to get rid of out bait on the inside of the north jetty. Had one bite, but couldnt manage anything off the north side. Glass minnows were being pounded all up and down the north jetty. I will have to give those rocks your talking about a shot, right off the southernmost point of the jetty? Whats the depth like around there, it was looking really sketchy on the low tide. Would love to get around there and try for a cubera, never caught one. Thanks for all this advice.
 

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Go to the southernmost outcropping of rocks at the south jetty then from there go west southwest about 50-100 yds. You will see the boulders and caves from the surface when the tide gets high. It has been getting so clear recently that you can actually see the bottom from the boat. All of that cover holds the big fish. The depth is 20-30ft. On the south jetty oceanside it can really look shallow but unless your boat drafts 5-6ft then you should be OK no matter what the tide. The ocean side of the south jetty is rather barren except for a few outcropping of rocks and boulders on the north side of it closest to and facing the inlet. The inlet side is a whole other story (lots of structure). Also from the northernmost boulders on the south jetty and into the inlet there is a steep drop off....there are big fish there also and a jewfish or two that hang there all the time. We are diving it this afternoon...hopefully I will have some pictures to share. On Saturday a friend of ours who is a underwater cinematographer is coming out with his camera....we should have some awesome footage to share some time after that. Glad the information is helpful.
 

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Current is RIPPING south to north and the inlet was rather dirty. We decided to venture north to some undercut caves I have marked about 1/3 of a mile north of the inlet. Our instincts paid off. We made it a very short day and didn't in the water until after three. A couple of pictures wen I have time to upload them
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Sounds like an awesome trip. Nothing for me tonight from the beach. Fished a few schools of greenies but nothing was home, really weird. Did snag a few but didnt have the gear to set them back out as bait. Heading out on the boat early Saturday for dolphin and plan on hitting the rocks your talking about on the way in with whatever left over bait we have. Tried that area last weekend with blue runners but nothing was home... Looking forward to your pictures. Sounds like bath tub beach would be a hot spot to fish right now.
 

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Here are a couple of pictures. Mine was just under 10lbs my buddies 22lbs. We also managed a few nice grovers and a spanish mack but we only took pics of our biggest fish


 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Good fish man. I cant believe those big boys are holding that close to the beach. Im heading out early for dolphin and hope to try for some cuberas in the afternoon. Heard a ton of cobia were seen today, maybe we will run into them too. Should be an awesome day all around tomorrow, I might see you out there. Good luck.
 

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How did you guys do on Saturday? We were out there and it was fishy. Current was running like 4-5 knots making diving conditions really tough....also the clean water that was pushed in shallow last week was south well into the state park. Inlet was warm and filthy but full of tarpon and snook. Whitebait bunched up at the inlet. I played captain and guided my friends to some of the deeper offshore wrecks. Many good fish sighted (cobia, permit, HUGE AJ's) One of my friends got a good gag grouper....I'll post a picture if anyone cares to see it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Fin & Scale,
We decided to make the run offshore and loaded up on the blackfins. After filling one of the boxes headed inshore and found a nice weedline in about 60 foot and trolled it. Right when I put out the second rod a nice 15 pound dolphin bolted from under neath the weed and he was fired up on my bait. Dropped back at him, he ate, but short striked it and he was gone. Did you run over that weedline? Nothing but albies the rest of the day for us. Too many to count. Sunday we found cobia at bull shark, along with some BIG sharks and some more albies. Got out late so didnt even bother catching bait, just used chunks of an albie from the day before. Real good weekend of fishing, REALLY fishy water like you said. The word all weekend was greenies all over the beach and cobia all over them. Cant wait till this weekend! May try the surf later on, but Ive been struggling from the beach lately. Just snagging a bunch of greenies. Sounds like you had a heck of a trip, you guys seem to always hit them hard. How deep were the cobia? Id love some more.
 

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Unfortunately we did not cut that weedline on the way out. We stayed in the Donaldson artificial reef area and hit the wrecks in the 65-70ft range. The cobia was sighted at one of those wrecks (62ft). If we could just see the cobes on the beach we could easily make them our "batches". When spearing the hardest parts of getting cobes is seeing them and then getting them subdued. Much like when you catch them H&L they save their best stuff for last. I have two cuts on my hand that are still healing from two weeks ago and I got those after the fish was already on the deck of the boat.
I would love to get a shot on a albacore or a blackfin some day. Actually blue water spearing is something that we really want to do here. I have shot dorado in the blue down south and it is a blast. It is hard to convince ourselves to go far into the deeper waters when there are fish relatively shallow. Blue water spearfishing is a all or nothing sort of proposition and the price of fuel isn't doing much to convince us to take the deep plunge.

Here's an proposition.....let me and a friend tag along some day or come out on us and we'll do our best to show you what kind of big fish lurk at some of your favorite spots. You can keep all the fish..(and the spots can remain your secrets)..I just want to keep the memory and a few pictures.:D
 

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Did you say you ran into cobia at the bullshark barge? There must have been 100 boats on it on Saturday about 3:00pm. Everyone was waiting out the storm before heading in and I guess they had the same idea we did because it looked like every boat south of the inlet was parked right over the top of that wreck.

We have never had much luck there mostly spanish mack and not much else. Place is flat out loaded with snook almost 365 days a year. It is also the home of about 6-10 jewfish ranging from 40lbs to two HUGE ones that probably go 500lbs a piece. We always see eagle rays there but those dudes never have cobes in tow....it is always the mantas, big common rays and bull sharks. To date the best fish we have taken there have been a few kings in the teens and tons of spaish macks. We have seen only one gag there in two years and I think he was lost.
 

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Here's the pic of the gag my buddy got. A personal best for him for gag grouper (they don't get them much down south). A minute and a half dive at almost 50+ft on a single breath of air. All of this in a ripping curent that was sinking our big crab float marker jug. One perfectly aligned shot that severed the spine and the fish was his....not even a twitch. We were all real happy for him.

PS notice the healed over scar on the fishes head....clearly a sign he narrowly escaped a earlier encounter with another speardiver. Fish are some of the toughest animals on the planet....this ones perfect condition after such trauma is testament to that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Saturday we were back in by 11. Sunday is when we decided to fish around bull shark along with the entire boating community. The cobia ate a chunk of bait on the bottom. We couldnt get near the barge, there were probably 100 boats there like you said on Saturday, but we were doing just as good just east of it anchored. You know the spot, its not very deep at all, but the albies were in there thick along with the huge sharks. On the weedline I was talking about we had non stop action with big albies. Even got one just shy of 20 pounds. You would have a ball trying to shoot one.

We are having company coming down thursday for the weekend and planning on doing a lot of fishing. If your set shooting some bluewater fish, we saw the dolphin in 60 feet of water and heard of a decent wahoo bite in 70 feet. All around that weedline. It wouldnt hurt to toss out a few chunks of bait while cruising down the weedline to see if anyones home. Im sure you could nail something. Seems like you were right in that area, we ran right over donaldson on our way in trolling. Caught more albies. I would think those blackfins would be tough to shoot and tough to locate. How do divers do it? They are averaging close to 5 pounds each with an occasional big fish mixed in.
 
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