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Are there actually fish in Destin?

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  • Are there actually fish in Destin?

    Watched the charter boats come in this weekend--many had no fish, the "good" trips looked like two snapper and an AJ. And these are the guys that know all the secret spots--how's a newbie like me supposed to find anything? I'll tell you what, the water is beautiful though. I think we're totally spoiled here in LA. by the fisheries we have.

    Who's got some pointers?

    What about trolling for Wahoo/Dolphin etc???

  • #2
    who ever told you there were fish in Destin must not of clarified themselves. Red snapper comes in two different flavors.....[:u]

    joking aside...

    the charter guys that you see are almost exclusively bottom fishing right now and from what I've heard the bottom fishing has been a bit tough the past 3 weeks or so. Trolling should be pretty good when we get there since the Kings will be in full swing during than. You can slooowwwww troll for Kings as soon as you leave the pass using live bait that you will catch at the pass with sabiki rigs. 20 miles out gives you a good shot at getting into decent Mahi-Mahi & blackfin tuna. The odds will increase as you get 40miles out with Wahoo thrown into the mix. About 60-80 miles is where you'll start finding the blue water and a shot at a bill-fish. Water temp lines are a huge factor here.

    I'm planning on keeping it simple.

    Haul azz to some artifical reefs 20 miles out and bottom fish to catch that first light bite. While moving around look for weedlines and have trolling gear reading to deploy at a moments notice. I'll utilize a 5 line spread and baits will depend on slow or fast troll.

    fast troll 5-10knots

    starboard out :----------------------feather

    starboard flat:--------daisy chain

    shotgun wtfb :--------------------------------------------ceder plug

    port flat :---------------high speed repala

    port out :---------------------------------feather

    slow troll bumped just in gear

    strbd out :------------------------live bait

    strbd flat :---------live on planer

    shotgun wtfb:-------------------------------------------------yozuri

    port flat :--------------------stretch 20/25

    port out :--------------------------------------live bait

    I plan on having my notebook with plotting software so I can help anyone out with numbers, hot spots, and distance to if you need.
    Steven[br]1978 Powercat 232[br]One flat broke, the other almost ready to float!!![br]Atlanta, GA

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    • #3
      Sadly the bait hasn't been there the last few weeks. We broke down and bought some from the bait dude last time out.

      Be prepared to bust out a $20 and get some livies at Harbor Walk or from the bait boat outside the pass or just inside depending on where they are.

      By the way, Harbor Walk will give you a BoatUS discount on gas if you tell them you're a member. Every little bit helps!

      Check with Half Hitch to get the latest fishing news. They can normally tell you what's happening.
      [br]***[br]\'82 Ski Nautique - Lake Martin, AL[br]\'80 236IB - Lake Martin, AL[br]\'03 Pursuit 2670 - Destin, FL

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      • #4
        Ben, that sux but $20 is a whole lot better than wasting 2 hours looking for something that isn't there. You gotta do what you gotta do shell out another $20 and wait in line. What were they selling? cigars or greenies?
        Steven[br]1978 Powercat 232[br]One flat broke, the other almost ready to float!!![br]Atlanta, GA

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        • #5
          now that's some good info!!--Thanks

          BTW--I know all too well about the land snapper around there!!

          If only I knew where the spur, nipple, and edge were I'd be in good shape

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          • #6
            touch base with me and I'll give you the numbers and show you on the plotter software. What's the range on your boat? The nipple is about 40 miles out if I remember but spur is a way on out there.
            Steven[br]1978 Powercat 232[br]One flat broke, the other almost ready to float!!![br]Atlanta, GA

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            • #7
              Glad I reserved A spot on your boat Steve. Sounds like we are gonna be busy. Can't wait!
              Nick Dodge[br]Maysville, GA[br]1990 Mako 261 Broken Arrow[br][br]Project Thread- http://classicmako.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=56182&whichpage=1

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              • #8
                I'd guess MakoMyDay's boat has a 200+ mile range... Its more of a question of how much $$$fuel$$$ we want to burn.
                Slidell, LA 1993 Mako 261B - Temperance

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                • #9
                  Range not an issue(350+)--just need the good spots[]

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                  • #10
                    I plan on running out to the Starfish complexes to fish and I believe that Michigan Dave will follow. For you out of town guys, I highly recommend you spend some time entering some gps numbers for the Starfish complex as well as the Sandollar reefs which is pretty much in the 20 mile range. The Prewitt and the Pole spots are also good numbers to have in your GPS. You can go crazy and enter a heck of a lot of numbers on the links I provided so have fun...I've spent many hours putting in these spots, and a few more pulling fish from them. [8D] You will need a good number of spots so you can move to the next if there are other boats on the spot, although you can certainly drift by them and pull fish up as well.

                    Here are a few more must haves from Half Hitch:

                    Some places to try for snapper would be

                    Urchin Reef Depth - 52' to 63'

                    10 Foot Prefabricated Concrete Towers

                    30.21.554N x 86.27.559W

                    30.21.617N x 86.27.619W

                    30.21.693N x 86.27.696W

                    30.21.627N x 86.27.873W

                    For Grouper try

                    Prewitt Tugboat - 86 ft. Tugboat

                    13779.0 x 47011.8 or N 30.03.689 x W 86.18.433

                    And for Amberjack try

                    Bob Reay Reef - 85 ft. Tugboat Belize Queen - Depth - 113'

                    30.08.800N x 86.40.410W

                    Trolling for Kings:

                    Broken Bottom 3018.233/8627.233 or Timber Holes 3010.993/8652.096
                    1978 Mako 25 - Blind Hog[br]1985 Mako 20c - sold[br]Mary Esther, FL[br]http://www.classicmako.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=42841[br]

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                    • #11
                      Steve, Tim and I probably will tag along and bottom fish the starfish complex. My GPS will be almost worthless without a C-map installed. dave.
                      [br]1994 Mako 215 Dual console Optimax 225[br]1978 Mako 19 with 90hp johnson[br]1996 Mako 22[br]1982 Mako 171 Angler 135 Black Max Mercury[br]1987 21b 225 Yamaha[br]1974 23 inboard Gusto gone.[br]1979m21 225johnson \"blue dolphin\" bought off this board and restored [br]with everyone\'s help!!Gone but not Forgotten....[br]1979 20 Mako 115 Suzuki gone[br]1977 19 Mako 115 Johnson gone[br]1976 23 Mako twin 140 Johnsons gone[br]1983 224 with closed transom and bracket[br]And 162 SOB (some other boats)[br]Venice Florida, Traverse city Mi.

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                      • #12
                        Here you go:

                        Nipple N.W. End 29*59.500'N 86*59.250'W

                        Nipple N.E. End 29*52.250'N 86*53.500'W

                        Squiggle: 29*30.031'N 86*24.651'W

                        If the seas are anything like they have been a trip to the Nipple will be easy. We did the 34 miles to the Oriskany in 60 minutes out and 50 minutes back Saturday.

                        There is another nice ridge called Bills Ridge that runs North-South and is much closer.

                        The southern edge is at: 30*14.000'N 86*33.750'W

                        The center is at: 30*16.800'N 86*33.800'W

                        I've never tried fishing it, but this is where the school of Dolphin was that we ran into Sunday.

                        I've caught Amberjack on the Janet wreck which is just east of Broken Bottom so its a nice tag on to some trolling for Kings. I'm sure there are plenty of snapper there also, I just haven't had any luck with them. There are usually divers there, but you might hit it just right.

                        The numbers for the wreck from my chart are: 30*15.881'N 86*23.165'W

                        The wreck is actually just south and east of those numbers. I don't have the correct numbers with me but it is not hard to find.
                        [br]***[br]\'82 Ski Nautique - Lake Martin, AL[br]\'80 236IB - Lake Martin, AL[br]\'03 Pursuit 2670 - Destin, FL

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                        • #13
                          Dave, I have a bunch of number on my c-map user card that you can download to your unit. You may not have maps but it will give you the numbers. Starfish was on my list so we maybe joining you and sailor.

                          Nick, I hope I can keep you guys busy. At the very least we'll get drunk trying.... or is that try getting drunk....

                          we can all wave to Artie as he goes screaming 60miles out in search of, I think they call them, Yahoo's.
                          Steven[br]1978 Powercat 232[br]One flat broke, the other almost ready to float!!![br]Atlanta, GA

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                          • #14
                            For you out of town guys, try going through the archived reports to get an idea of what you are looking for. I would go through the May, June and July reports.....

                            http://www.halfhitch.com/destinRptArchives.asp
                            1978 Mako 25 - Blind Hog[br]1985 Mako 20c - sold[br]Mary Esther, FL[br]http://www.classicmako.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=42841[br]

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