Great fishin stories by great customers at Gary’s Tackle Box.
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Headed out to the Middle Grounds for the opening of red snapper season with a crew of 5 (me, my son Reid, Todd Williams, Scott Daniels, & Morgan Griggs. We ran across a random floating piece of carpet in 125' and circled back just to be swarmed with schoolie mahi. We trolled up a few for sandwiches and left the rest to grow bigger. We fished all night and the morning until about 9:00 and ended with a limit of red snapper (from 14#'s to 18#'s), mangrove snapper to 7#'s, scamp grouper, red grouper, beeliners, and some tasty porgies. We released quite a few gags with the largest being a heartbreaking 20+ pounder caught by 9 year old Reid. Another epic journey to the Middle Grounds. - P. Wagner
Took family and friends out Saturday to Horseshoe and arrived just after low tide. We fished the incoming tide just south of Pepperfish most of the day. The bite was very slow, but we managed to ice seven Trout and one Spanish. Most were caught on soft plastics in white/pink or chartreuse with a couple being caught on live shrimp. The trick was moving north of Horseshoe until the water started clearing up and fishing the grass with a slow retrieve. Picture is of my wife Melinda Bell with one of the day's keepers. -Chris Bell
Took my daughter (Chelsea Bell), my brother (Steven Bell) and two of his kids (David and Krista)to Horseshoe Saturday morning. We got their early and by 8:30am we were wetting our lines a little more than halfway to Pepperfish in about 3ft of water. We caught trout all day, putting about 10 slot specs and a couple of Spanish in the box. Most fish were caught with 3 inch Gulp in Pearl White with pink tails on a 1/8 ounce red jig (Jim's, you can get them at Gary's Tackle Box). We also did very well with the Stinky Fingers Shrimp in clear with gold fleck. As the tide moved out, we found moving out with it kept us on the bite. -Chris Bell
I took my dad, wife, and daughter to Horseshoe Saturday 3/22. Out of the channel we turned north towards Pepperfish and stopped about half way to it. Using primarily pearl white Gulp! we caught fish in 2-3ft range all day keeping 8 that were in the slot. The biggest was 21 inches and about 4 pounds that my dad caught (Gene). That picture is attached. There is also a picture of one of my daughters keepers (Chelsea). -Chris Bell
Thought we'd try the minefield of rocks around Yankeetown for the first time in months with hopes that rising water temps.would bring on the bite. Went back to the well I've dubbed trout tavern for obvious reasons on Wed. morning Feb.26 facing ugly conditions with a rising tide and approaching front. On the second cast of the day it hit a purple- speckled chartuese tail 5" worm in 4' of dark water. A lengthy fight ensued with a 37" robalo (snook)Being captured,photographed,and released to fight another day.Two trout and 20 minutes had to throw in the towel as The rains and wind had picked up.I have a feeling it's gonna be a good spring. Capt. Dan Markham-Capt.Joe Ryan
Bill Stanley and Joey Landreneau started Sunday morning, Feb 2nd on an speckled trout bite with 2 limits of upper slot fish by 9:00. We decided to return to an area Joey had previously sighted a few really big redfish. Low and behold we were able to sight cast to a school of overslot redfish and land the fish in the picture. We hooked two other fish but did not get them boat side. The first school of redfish was estimated at 50 - 60; the second school was 10 - 15 fish. Fish were caught on Texas Tackle Factory soft plastic, GAMA 15 lb Torque braid, 25lb GAMA fluorocarbon leader.
Gary, Charlie Brown caught a mess of these in Newnan's this weekend, Can you ID the fish? Thanks Pete
Answer: non-native Plecostomus (or armored catfish)
My brother-in-law Kimber Jones, his nephew Randy Autrey, and I were fishing the grass flats just north of the Horseshoe Beach ramp last Saturday. We saw a bobber floating, and being the frugal, cheap ones we are, decided to go retrieve the free gift from some unlucky fisherman. We threw out our own rigs trying to snag it. We finally did, and when we got it near the boat, it surged forward and we discovered a huge redfish attached to the rig. We were able to keep our eyes on the bobber in about 2-3 feet of water, following with the boat. It finally slowed down, Kimber threw out his rig, reeled it slowly until it made contact with the bobber, and set the hook into the bobber. Then the fight began. The redfish pulled drag out, he would reel it in closer, and then it would surge out to sea again. After about a 15 minute battle, we hauled aboard the beautiful 29.5" redfish. I hope we can find out who lost this fish-it broke them off on the reel side of the bobber rig on 15 or 30lb braid. They could at least get some satisfaction in seeing the fish they lost. B. Harrison
Another epic trip to the Middle Grounds! We caught red snapper, mangrove snapper, multiple grouper species (red, scamp, & rock hind), blackfin tuna, & cobia on the way out and in). The largest fish were: - 25.5 lb. blackfin tuna - 16.5 lb. red snapper - 25.5 lb. cobia We caught one cobia when we were catching bait prior to heading offshore and then stopped at the same spot on the way in and found a pod of 3, 2 of which we landed. The red snapper were all over 10 lbs. P. Wagner
Fished out of Horseshoe Saturday the 11th. Arrived at low tide and fished the flats north of the channel until high tide. Focused on water 3 1/2 to 4 1/2 feet deep using 4" Pearl White Gulp! Boated 30-40 trout, kept 14 of the biggest with 2 over 18", 1 over 19", and 1 that was 22" and 4 1/2 pounds. Great day with my father, brother, and nephew David Bell who had both biggest fish of the day and most fish of the day! Picture is of my brother Steven Bell and father Gene Bell with one of the many doubles for the day.
We went to Horseshoe this past Saturday 4/6 and arrived on our "spot" around 10:30am. Fishing the incoming tide with Gulp! 3-4 inch Shrimp in Pearl White, Nuclear Chicken, and New Penny. I really didn't get time to fish much, I was busy taking keeper sized trout off the hooks for my 13 yo daughter, 15 yo niece, and wife. Most were caught in 3-4 foot of water. Great day. - C. Bell
Pitched a Gambler "why not" in 2ft of water and she ate. She went right at 10lbs on the boga and measured 26" long. The fish was caught in Fanning Springs on the Suwannee river.
This was my first time fishing in saltwater over in St.Augustine. I guess you can say I got lucky but I had the biggest catch of the day a 7lbs sheepshead. - T. Green
Here's a limit from Lake Sampson on 26 January 2013 - B. Morrell
24 inch 8 lb. largemouth bass caught on Rousseau Reservoir January 17th by Art Jones as witnessed by Jack Cutright. Boat: Art & Kaye’s 89 Javelin Rod: Lew’s Laser SL Speed Stick HM45 (spinning reel) Line: 20 lb. Pro braid 6 ft. Leader: Berkley 20 lb Vanish Fluorocarbon Hook: Owner 4/0 offset worm Weight: ¼ oz Screw Bullet Weight Bait: Zoom, Mag U-V Speed Worm, watermelon red Weather: 10 am. cool and raining Location: in the lip All tackle purchased at Garry’s Tackle Box, the same gear used in 2012 that qualifies Art Jones as Co-Angler of the Year 2012 with Bassmasters of Gator Country
Went to Marineland and had already caught some mullet at the inlet (Matanzas), as the sun started getting low, the fish started biting....there were some big fish lost, (all redfish) and enough keepers for the two of us. Heavy triangle sinkers (6 oz.) a sliding sinker rig, and 80 lb leader for the rocks, with a chunk or whole finger mullet....and the bite was on!
Me (Phil Wagner), John Fleming and Larry Ennis took our sons Reid, Evan, and Brody(turned 10 on the trip) out to the Middle Grounds for an overnight trip on Fri/Sat (7/6/12). We launched out of Cedar Key around 9:00 AM and spent a couple hours filling both baitwells. We then ran 3 hours to the first spot in 200'. We proceed to both jig and bottomfish a nice limit of red snapper with the birthday boy getting the largest at 13#'s. We then moved in a bit to 190' and proceeded to catch a good amount of red and scamp grouper plus more throw back red snapper. We anchored for the night on a nice ledge and proceeded to round out our grouper catch, throw back a lot more red snapper, and added some nice mangrove snapper up to 4#'s to the mix. It was a great trip with flat seas and 3 worn out kids (and adults) once we were finished. The kids got to see a hammerhead circle the boat and a crazy dad (me) jump in and swim with some dolphin. It was a blast.
6/30/12 Overnight fishing trip to the Middle Grounds. We ended up with limits of red snapper and all grouper plus we had some nice mangrove snapper to mix in. Phil Wagner, his son, Reid, Jay Peacock, Evan "Skee" George, & Scott Daniels
Capt. Joey Landreneau - Gary, We have been chasing over slot redfish for the last few weeks. The last couple of trips, we were able to target nice schools of 30" redfish. June 03, 2012, B. Stanley, Cedar Island neighbor, caught this 40", 24.5lb redfish on a top water plug while I was on the push pole. The shallow water prohibited the use of the trolling motor.
T. Cooper - While fishing live menhaden for Cobia out of Cedar Key on 5/26/12, much to my suprise, a hard hit and 20 minutes later, a catch and release had to be done, but boy what a beauty.