Deep Drop on the Blue Spear It

Frenchy called me and asked if I wanted to put that deep drop rig I blogged about to work.  I jumped at the chance.  We loaded up the Blue Spirit and headed south out of Pensacola Pass on a crisp cool morning. The wind was still and the seas smooth making for a nice run out.  Crew was Scott (aka FN Yankee), Mike, Bill, Me and Frenchy.

We stopped and took a quick shot at some bonito for bait, but they were elusive and we did not have time to waste.  So we were reduced to utilizing our stash of assorted frozen ilk including this turducken like cigar minnow stuffed squid.

Yes, squid do eat fish nearly as big as they are.

Here is a little video of the action.

And a few stills:

Turned the grouper into Baked Grouper Parm.

Simple to make.  Just dipped the fish in a mix of egg and milk then dropped in a baggie containing Parmesan cheese, flour, salt and pepper.  Baked for 25 minutes at 350 degrees.  Pairs well with Magic Hat #9 (but then, what doesn’t?).

Until next time, get out there and catch ’em up.



Deep Drop Rig

The other day I blogged about a recent trip we took to do deep drop.  You can read that here and check out the grouper, tile fish and bass we caught:

I was asked about the rigs we were using to catch those fish so I created a short video to show you how to make them up.  They are pretty simple and while you can buy them already made up, it’s a lot cheaper to do yourself.

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Here is the video of building the deep drop rig.  I had a little help from my K9 buddy.  He didn’t seem very impressed.

For deep drop, you really need an electric reel.  Cranking up five to eight pounds of weight 800 feet to check your bait would get old really fast. These used to be particularly expensive, but they have come down in price significantly in the last couple of years.  You can get some really nice ones, but you can also go budget.  I have a Diawa Tanacum Bull 1000 that is really nice but relatively lower priced.  I also have a Fish Winch that is at the low end of the price spectrum, but that I have found to be like the turtle, slow and steady.

The rod on the Fish Winch is just a trolling rod with roller guides.  Works fine and I switch it back and forth between trolling and deep drop so I don’t need two separate rods.  The one on the Tanacum is a really nice dedicated deep drop rod my wife bought me and you can also see in the picture a kite rod (also a gift from my wife. She keeps me well outfitted!). This allows me to switch the Tanacum over for kite fishing duty rather than having two separate reels.

Hope that all helps you to get out there and catch ’em up.

P.S. Please enter your email address over on the right margin to subscribe and register for a chance to win your free custom powder coated and etched Yeti cup on January 30.  Good luck!

Mahi Maddness

Allen, Nate and Frenchy and I loaded up the FN Pair-A-Dice on Sunday and headed south. We awoke to some stiff winds, but since they were out of the North we had a manageable following sea for the run.  We could see from the satellite imagery there was blue water over DeSoto Canyon and what looked like some promising temperature changes.

We put lines in south of the 131 hole in decent looking water, but found no love.  There was little bait and no activity so we picked up and headed further Southwest where we found a poorly formed, but promising looking weed line.  It was not long before our baits were getting attacked by hungry mahi.  They were not huge, but we were picking off some nice gaffer size fish and having a good time.

3 Dolphin3 Sad Dolphin26# Dolphin

We were fishing a mix of ballyhoo and artificials and got hits on on both, but soon ran out of ballyhoo and had to go strictly to lure fishing.   Things slowed down mid day and the rip was getting hard to follow, but we stuck with it.  We were running a dredge rigged with ballyhoo and a big marlin lure over it on the left flat line.  We were hoping the dredge would lure a marlin in and then it would commit on the big plug that was following above and just behind.  When we got a big knock down on the flat line it looked like the plan had worked, but unfortunately the fish spit the hook without ever showing itself.  A couple of the ballyhoo on the dredge were gone though and one appeared to be bitten or broken in half so I think we had a bill in there wacking at them.  Would have been nice to hook her up, but it was not meant to be.

Late afternoon we ran across a large piece of plastic container in the water and it had four or five triple tail on it along with jacks and trigger fish.   We worked it hard and were able to get two of the triple tail, one of which was a keeper and will make a nice meal tomorrow.


We tried a little deep drop before heading home, but the crew was tired and we did not stick with it.  We did pick up a small golden tile, but that was it.  So we packed it up and headed for the hill.


The wind shifted south and laid down and the ride home was smooth sailing with Nate and Frenchy at the helm.


Hope you enjoyed the report.  If you did, please register to follow the blog by clicking the register link over in the right margin.  And until next time, Catch em up!