We have had a great time filling up the fish board the past couple of weeks. The weather has been cooperative most days with gorgeous emerald green water and hot temps. The end of red snapper season (for 7 weeks) came with mixed emotions for those of us that go every day. I hate to have to throw back a big fish but I sure enjoy getting to chase some other critters for a while.
Thanks to the hard work of a dedicated group of locals, South Walton has added an entire layer of recreation through artificial reef environments. The South Walton Artificial Reef Association (SWARA) has installed the first set of near shore reefs off our beaches.
Yep, it's fishing report time so the surf must be up. We have had a lot of weather the past several days that has kept everyone on the hill. Nothing tropical, just breezy and surfy, looks like we may have another couple rough days as well.
For the captain and crew of Cotton Patch, the 13th Annual Emerald Coast Blue Marlin Classic (ECBC) was anything but unlucky. Lance Hill from Orange Beach, Alabama labored for almost six hours on Friday afternoon before reeling in an event record 899.6-pound blue marlin. The record billfish was measured at 134-inches with a girth of 74-inches to earn Team Cotton Patch first place and a payout of $195,277 for a tournament that doled out more than $1.5 million in winnings. The Baytowne Marina at Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort is the host venue for the event which took place June 17-21.
The Choctawhatchee Basin Alliance (CBA) of Northwest Florida State College announces the summer session of its award winning eco-tourism initiative, Discover Roads Less Traveled: Eco-Adventures of Walton County. Voted Best Outdoor Adventure in the 2015 Perfect in South Walton- Best of the Best list, the summer tour line-up falls nothing short. Don’t miss the chance to get outdoors this summer and explore!
It’s time for big fish, big prizes and family fun on the Emerald Coast of Florida! Recognized as one of the elite big-game fishing tournaments in the world, the 2015 Emerald Coast Blue Marlin Classic is set to get underway June 17-21, 2015, at the beautiful Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort in the Florida Panhandle.
As usual, if I am on the hill writing a fishing report then the surf must be up. All the young kids with surfboards have been having a blast the past couple days as Tropical Storm Bill hot Texas and kicked up a swell way too big to be able to safely get a boat on and off the beach. The weather is beautiful and the Gulf is slick, once you get past that 5 foot surf on the bar! Hopefully we will all be back out chasing finny critters again tomorrow.
After a bit of a bumpy start, both weather-wise and the bite, we have settled in to some easy fishing with great limit catches of Red Snappers. The Amberjacks are STILL up in shore and we were chasing them after a snapper limit until they closed on June 1st.
Even though I have been staying away from the spots that hold big schools of 'em we still get surprised about everyday by a stray 'Jack biting a snapper bait. The groupers that had seemed to be in hiding most of the Spring suddenly started biting hot on this full moon phase.
Stinky’s Bait Shack has a name that belies its great selection of beach and water fare. It is the kind of place you sometimes stumble upon that is completely unexpected. The guys and gals of Stinky’s know how to do it right. Owner and chef, Jim Richard, along with Bait Shack manager, Kelli Younkin, have put a ton of thought, backed by experience, into exactly what their shop should offer.
The long awaited opening of Red Snapper season for 2015 came Saturday morning with a navy of recreational anglers ready to go catch the first of many days worth of the hard-pulling, tasty critters.
The morning started calm and pretty and I did my traditional "crack of dawn" run with my son and some friends to put a quick limit of the first fish over the rail before running my charters for the day. The reds bit hot and we were back in on the beach catching live bait for my charters in 45 minutes. I picked up my first trip at 7:30 for these folks second annual opening day trip.