Winter Wonders Fishhead Style

January 17, 2012 by Larry Pentel

At least not everything changes. We celebrated the new year at Indian Pass with several friends and fishin' buddies. Great sunsets, lots of oysters and some play fishing time made for a great holiday.

Just another perfect winter sunset...

All the good fishermen love a good sunset

Marshalls answer to all the folks that say winter trout are small.

The trout in the above pic was caught in the middle of school of about 50 Redfish... Marsh threw into 'em, got the bite , set the hook and fought what acted like "just another" slot redfish for 5 minutes before the fish broke the surface at the boat and I dove off the poling platform for the net!

Back here in Sowal I have been hard at it boat building. I have spent most of the past several weeks putting a boat together for capt Tyler Hammond to run off Grayton this summer. The "Too Dead Fish" will be a welcome addition to our little mosquito charter fleet off the beach. As the son of ( and ex deckhand for) Capt Phil, he has lots of experience beach launching. Pictures of the "new" boat coming soon.

This past weekend not only had the songwriters festival but also fantastic winter weather at the beach. I was lucky enough to get to run two groups offshore to chase Greater Amberjacks with good success each day. A breezy North wind early to ride offshore and a slick calm sea to run home in, perfect conditions !

The fish bit good too, I think this fella's bobber just went under...

This angler has fished with me a bunch but this was his first Amberjack. To say he was impressed by the fight is putting it mildly. He and his buddy went 9 for 19 with the ole reef donkeys.

These 2 had a couple more folks with 'em but they fell out from the fight. Those jacks are tough.

While we didn't target them the Vermilion Snappers seem to have made the move back in with the drop in water temps, We caught a few both days while trying to catch bait for the Jacks. It's a shame they don't get as big as the Red Snapper but boy, do they taste good! I may have to run a trip to target them and the triggers here soon.

I have had a lot of e-mails and calls from folks wanting to know about Red Snapper season this year. So far the powers that be (NOAA) has not deemed us mere fisherman important enough to be informed on such matters of national security. 

I'm sure the folks that make the final decisions have already made up thier minds on how long they are going to let us keep the most abundant fish out there but have decided to keep it secret for a while longer to lessen the time we can fuss about our "allowance". As soon as there is an official announcement I'll post it on a fishin' report. 

The Black (Gag) grouper season this year seems to be as follows.. open July 1st, close October 31st. Only 4 months but we are supposed to be thrilled as it's twice as long as last years Sept 15 to Nov.15 season. Those are the dates put out by NOAA, the Florida powers that be are meeting soon to probably adopt the same season.

Keep your chin up, your hooks sharp and a eye out for good sunset!


Larry Pentel's picture

Captain Larry Pentel is a native of South Walton, growing up just 300 yards from the beach. Having fished the local waters for over 40 years, he is very familiar with all the different types of local fish, their habits, and most importantly - their habitats. Captain Larry is the owner of Dead Fish Charters

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