Captain
Kristopher Kell

Member since May 2016 Jacksonville, United States
Background
I'm a retired Navy Officer with 24 years of experience on the water and love to pass that experience on to others. For me, fishing was a chance as a child to bond with my father, grandfather, and family friends. Competition, the excitement of pulling up a fish not knowing what it may be sometimes, and spending time with my own family on the water has given me nothing but positive memories. As time went on, I began to feel more gratified by putting other people on fish and teaching them something that would help them create their own memories. Let me be the person that does that for you and you won't be disappointed!
Techniques
Based on the clients, I typically will fish with float rigs, jigs, bottom fish, and love to troll with live bait. Investigating bait pods and casting at tarpon, shark, and bull redfish brings many smiles to faces as well. If the customer is more experienced, we'll tie on light terminal tackle and go after redfish, sheepshead, and trout. This is a test as to how well one can feel when the line may give and knows when to back off the fight! It's a risk and so much fun.

Hey, I'm Captain Kristopher Kell

Jacksonville, United States
Background
I'm a retired Navy Officer with 24 years of experience on the water and love to pass that experience on to others. For me, fishing was a chance as a child to bond with my father, grandfather, and family friends. Competition, the excitement of pulling up a fish not knowing what it may be sometimes, and spending time with my own family on the water has given me nothing but positive memories. As time went on, I began to feel more gratified by putting other people on fish and teaching them something that would help them create their own memories. Let me be the person that does that for you and you won't be disappointed!
Techniques
Based on the clients, I typically will fish with float rigs, jigs, bottom fish, and love to troll with live bait. Investigating bait pods and casting at tarpon, shark, and bull redfish brings many smiles to faces as well. If the customer is more experienced, we'll tie on light terminal tackle and go after redfish, sheepshead, and trout. This is a test as to how well one can feel when the line may give and knows when to back off the fight! It's a risk and so much fun.

My Charter Listing

Fish Whisperer Charters LLC

Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent 81 reviews
Jacksonville
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trips from $475

Fishing Reports

Late December/Early January Fishing
Late December/Early January Fishing
Dec 16, 2016 Jacksonville
Water temperatures are still 63 - 64deg and fishing continues to be very productive inshore from the Mayport Jetties to the Blount Island area. We’re catching plenty of seatrout, weakfish, redfish, mangrove snapper, sheepshead, black drum, ringtail porgy, and the occasional flounder. Sheepshead has been the “go-to” fish along with the ringtails and both offer plenty of fun and fillets. The water temps have finally filtered out many of the trash fish and quality sheepshead can be counted on in their place. Bull redfish have been a nice surprise this year as many of the larger ones continue to put smiles on the faces of clients. There have been a couple of opportunities to get offshore and enjoy some consistent black seabass, red snapper, and triggerfish action along with bull sharks (that was facetious). Several of my counterparts have reported nice cobia being taken on jigs, as well. We got the most action by catching 12-15 live pinfish early in the morning around the docks and using them for bait either live or chunked. The chunked bait can often be used more than once for nice seabass; however, the red snapper thinks it’s a Christmas cookie and will devour it in seconds. Triggerfish took the squid over everything else so that’s something to consider. (What to Expect) You have probably already noticed, but I’m changing the format of this write-up to more of a report/forecast. Please keep in mind, there’s only a slightly better chance to predict fishing than there is weather, so try not to wake me too hard if you drive by me on the water and things aren’t going as planned  I take into account current trends/reports and my logs over the years and put together an educated guess as to what the expectations should be. Water temps will continue to decrease but at a slower rate than in the past because of unseasonal warmth but I have noticed the clarity getting much better. Fishing activity should continue to be steady for at least another 3 weeks with the best bite occurring at the last hour and a half of an outgoing tide and the first hour of the incoming. So does this mean you can only fish for two and half hours? Absolutely not! It’s amazing how many locations will have current appearing as an outgoing on the middle of an incoming tide (eddies, etc.). This is when it pays to do your homework and find these spots during different stages of the tides. I’ve spent several 8 hour days on the water catching fish and moving based on current variations and always look for oysters, docks, and rocks causing a disturbance or break in the current. Another thing to consider is that the colder the water gets, it’s best to fish a little deeper or wait until the sun has warmed a mud flat area and fish then. You can expect sheepshead to continue to improve with not only size, but quantity, along with the black drum. Top bait for sheepshead will be quartered blue crab, fiddler crab, & shrimp, but they may get a little finicky as the water temps drop and favor clams or peeled shrimp. Black drum will take shrimp, alive or dead, on jigs or Carolina rigs but I’ve had better luck on Carolinas recently. Captain Steve Crowder posted a great report on the ringtail porgy, so I won’t go into that. Redfish, slot and oversized, will be around throughout the winter and techniques to fish them will change with water temps. The best days to fish, in my opinion, are going to be December 26th – 31st, January 4th – 6th, 11th – 14th, & 26th – 29th.
Cooler Water = Consistent Activity
Cooler Water = Consistent Activity
Nov 26, 2016 Jacksonville
28 November 2016 Northeast Florida Fishing Report – Capt Kris Kell, Fish Whisperer Charters Water temperatures are now hovering around 64 - 66 and the fishing has been great inshore from the Mayport Jetties to the Blount Island area. The opportunity to catch a variety of fish is there and we have been netting plenty of seatrout, weakfish, redfish, mangrove snapper, sheepshead, black drum, and the occasional flounder. I keep a log of every single trip including water temps, tide, clarity, time of day, etc., and the trend is that the trout are hitting better in low light conditions, first and last of outgoing until the current is too fast (almost 2 knots). Basically, if the current is causing a wake against your boat and you can hear it, it’s probably too fast for most species unless your casting towards a break in the current. This is when it’s imperative that you search for slower currents around docks, points, and eddies from creek mouths. The bait we’ve been using lately is shrimp, fiddler crabs, and the nice-sized mud minnows from B&M® Bait and Tackle shop on A1A. We’ve caught just as many sheepshead on shrimp than fiddlers but the fiddler crabs have yielded bull/slot reds and plenty of black drum along the North Mayport Jetties. As usual, the trash fish will drive you crazy until the water temps drop a bit more but stick with it and you’ll typically be rewarded. I’ll usually fish the North Jetties when weather allows but hop over to the South tip when the tide is outgoing. For trout, the docks have produced better than anything else using the mud minnows & shrimp with smaller flounder. To my dismay, the flounder migration was not as hot as a few years ago and I suppose we’ll have to appreciate what we get. If you’re fishing the creeks, you’ll likely find that there are smaller trout in the 12-14” range and redfish 15-16” schooled up. Although fun to catch, the likelihood that you’ll find a keeper in that same area is small. Move around and when you score the target size, fish that area until the bite stops. (TTPs - Tactics, Techniques, & Procedures) The TTPs for trout are probably well known, but I like to try a variety of baits/rigs on each spot and see what produces. Check for water clarity first (high to low tide shift is good and if it’s clean, the last of the low tide is awesome!) and currents to determine the weight/jig color you’ll need to use. I’ll put someone on a popping cork and shrimp, a carolina rig, and a jig. The cork and Carolina rig have been the best lately but could change. If the water is dirty, I’ll hook up some spinners on the jigs to help with vibration/sight detection. A popping cork is rigged with about 3’ of fluorocarbon leader and a 1 or 1/0 kahle or circle hook with a splitshot sinker 6” above the hook. After it’s casted, pop it with a sharp twitch every 8-10 secs or so to imitate the sound of baitfish and draw attention. Something to consider here is a fast twitch rod because trying to work this rig with a very soft tip causes a delayed reaction for popping and hookset. If you’re using the circle hooks, remember that it is NOT required that you jump back 3ft to set the hook. Simply raise the rod quickly and start retrieving and the hook will do the job for you. For the carolina rig and jig, work it back by raising the rodtip to vertical if you’re around structure and lower it while reeling in the slack. This needs to be done slowly because that is the natural pace of a shrimp/minnow moving through the water. A moderate hookset with this rig is okay which simply translates into a faster raising of the rod and not a full body movement. This is the number one reason I see clients miss the trout. The mouth of a trout is soft and the hook tears clean from the tissue. Also, keep the drag on your reels set a little lower because if you hook into a larger trout, the fight against the drag alone can cause the hook to tear loose. (What to Expect) Water temps will continue to decrease which will increase the fish activity and clarity is still improving. A steady bite can be expected for at least another 3 weeks. The best days to fish, in my opinion, are going to be November 29th – 30th, December 1st, 11th – 16th, & 26th – 31st. Until next time! Fair Winds & Following Seas, Capt Kris Kell
Variety of Fish in the Fall
Variety of Fish in the Fall
Nov 6, 2016 Jacksonville
Although there has been a persistent North/Northeast wind keeping the seas churned up, there have been a few gorgeous days allowing one to get out around the Mayport Jetties as well as the beaches. Because the water surface temps are 73-75 based on tide, the variety of species available makes for some exciting fishing. Redfish, flounder, seatrout, mangrove snapper, black drum, & most recently, sheepshead are on the list of likely catches and all can be caught on low or high tide; however, high shifting to low tide has worked best for me offering some water clarity and outflow where ambush points can be set up. The flounder, in my opinion, are still not in full migration to offshore areas but they are getting more consistent and perhaps in the next week or two we’ll see a pick-up in size and quantity. The sheepshead…yes, there is an “s” after sheep to the dismay of some of my buddies, have been rolling in from offshore and have been great one day and elusive the next with more days offering a handful as the water temps drop. (TTPs - Tactics, Techniques, & Procedures) Sheepshead are peculiar fish to catch and the majority of clients I take out either hate them and express such feelings with various curses, or are absolutely addicted to the things. Again, I like the high to low shift of tide offering water clarity and current that forces fish to a certain area as opposed to a flood tide that allows for greater fish dispersion in a given area. It is also important to understand that one doesn’t have to be practically on the rocks along the jetties to catch them as some of the better places can be 20-50ft away from them. Observe the bottom structure on your fish finder and you’ll see plenty of rocks and such in deeper water that will produce sheepshead along with some black drum. If you’re not getting a consistent bite in one area, move to another because there are plenty of places to fish. I like to vary my rigs for sheepshead and have found that they will hit one better than the other on different occasions. My favorite is the Carolina rig with a weight just heavy enough to get the line straight up and down and a small bead on the main line (20lb braid). My leader is attached via a small 80# SPRO swivel and consists of a 12” length of fluorocarbon (30#) with a 1 or 1/0 kahle hook using an offshore loop knot. Sometimes, I will use mosquito hooks instead of kahle but in either case, check your hook after each fish because their hard mouths and teeth can bend or destroy it easily. The other rig is a 14” leader with a 1/4oz sheepshead jig. These jigs are specific because they have smaller hooks and short shanks. Bait is also varied and consists of fiddler crabs, peeled shrimp, quartered blue crab, and sometimes clams. The technique I use is to drop the bait straight down until it touches bottom, bring it up about 6-12”, hold for about 5-7 seconds, lower it back down and repeat. This helps in keeping the rigs from snagging and allows the angler to feel everything going on. The hardest thing to teach my customers is to not set the hook like a Bassmaster every time something is felt. If a bump is felt, steadily raise the rod up and feel if it is a solid pull, like a rock, or a dead weight that flops around. If it’s the latter, then set the hook with a little “sting” and not a full body lift! (What to Expect) Water temps will continue to decrease which will increase the fish activity and clarity is still improving. Flounder should increase in numbers as they make their way offshore as well as trout and sheepshead. The best days to fish, in my opinion, are going to be November 8th – 10th, 15th – 17th, & 28th – 30th. Until next time! Fair Winds & Following Seas, Capt Kris Kell
Flounder Time!
Flounder Time!
Oct 22, 2016 Jacksonville
22 October 2016 Northeast Florida Fishing Report – Capt Kris Kell, Fish Whisperer Charters Due to Hurricane Matthew and the week-long Nor’easter preceding it, fishing has changed quite a bit for me. Capt Kirk Waltz explained the debris issue, “super” tides, and dirty water the best in his report so I won’t rehash that; however, it is worth mentioning that the water temps have dropped about 10 in the last 2 ½ weeks. Oct 2nd, I had 84 surface temps and post-Matthew, had 75 or less depending on tides. This shift has brought about my favorite time of year when flounder really start migrating offshore and trout fire up. This past week was very productive for flounder with an occasional trout thrown in but lacking the size I like to see. It’s still early! We were able to get out around the jetties once without the 4-5ft waves beating us up and did manage to catch a bull red and a large slot, but didn’t find redfish anywhere else. The success has been the flounder around the docks and rocks of the Northern St. John’s river bank from the Mayport boat ramp to Blount Island. I’ve always liked the high to low tide shift for these fish but with the extreme tides, it’s just been too swift in some of my favorite haunts so I’ve waited for the last of the low tide for best results in more manageable currents. In my opinion, the flounder are just beginning to push out to sea and the best places to fish for them are going to be chokepoints that they have to travel through to get to the ocean. (TTPs - Tactics, Techniques, & Procedures) I get so excited about fishing for flounder that I’ll spend hours researching their feeding habits and try to replicate that regardless of the bait I’m using. With artificials, my “go-to” is Berkley Gulp!® and anything with a curly or paddle tail. Sometimes flounder prefer one over the other but it’s the movement plus scent that triggers the bite. I rig these using a 2ft piece of 30 or 40 pound fluorocarbon leader to a spinner and chartreuse jig. Cast it right up against rock walls and docks or edges of grass beds and let them settle for a few seconds before any retrieval. I’ve had some of my best strikes as soon as the bait hit the water and settled. With the spinner rig, slowly raise the rod tip and feel the spinner doing its job and let it settle back down while you retrieve the slack. A slow movement along the bottom is best. If fishing live bait, my best baits are mullet, mud minnows, or shrimp. An adult flounder’s diet is about two-thirds fish and a third shrimp, so I always try fish first. When rigging for these, I use a Carolina rig with the appropriate bullet weight because the bullet shape tends to prevent snags when pulling along the bottom. Make sure the pointed side of the weight is facing the rod and then slide that up the main line followed by a small bead to protect the knot, then a small swivel. I then attach a 14” 30 or 40 pound flouro leader to the swivel and a 1/0 kahle hook on the other end using an offshore knot to give the live bait “wiggle” capability. When struck on either the artificial or live bait, ALWAYS give it 3-7 seconds before setting the hook unless you know the fish is solidly hooked in. So many times people either jerk the rod too quickly or do it so hard that the bait is taken right out of the fish’s mouth. Remember, flounder usually grab and hold the bait a second before sucking it completely down. (What to Expect) Lots of flounder, trout, and redfish action are expected throughout the next few weeks as water clarity improves and tides regain normality. The best days to fish, in my opinion, are going to be October 27th – 31st,, November 1st & 2nd, 8th – 10th, 15th – 17th, & 28th – 30th. Until next time! Fair Winds & Following Seas, Capt Kris Kell
Red Tide
Red Tide
Sep 28, 2016 Jacksonville
Redfish are absolutely lit up right now and we’ve been catching our limits in the vicinity of the Mayport jetties. Water temps are still holding around 83F but water clarity is hit or miss. The jetties have enormous amounts of mullet forced to swim around them to migrate and redfish, tarpon, flounder, Spanish mackerel, and trout have been taken the last week or so using exclusively mullet and 1/8 or 1/4oz jigs. We even landed two tarpon on these jigs! I’ll typically start with a 5” or so live finger mullet and while I catch a few fish, watch for the 8-10” mullet swimming by in schools and toss a small net on some for bull redfish action later on. BTW, watch that you don’t toss your net on top of predators when snatching these mullet or you’ll be sewing your net…just saying. Bull reds aren’t as hot for me as they have been in the past but there are plenty to be caught. Most of those are being caught upriver between the Dames Point bridge and BAE Systems shipyard on high and low tide with high tide working best for me in 35 – 40ft of water. We had a few outstanding offshore days with one in particular yielding triggerfish, seabass, red snapper, cobia, and a vermillion snapper about 18 miles out. Pogies were used along with squid but the pogies are harder to come by nowadays and I always carry the back-up cigar minnows, Spanish sardines, and squid. There are plenty of sardine bait schools around the wrecks and reefs and I always have a sabiki rig on the ready. (TTPs - Tactics, Techniques, & Procedures) Jetty fishing takes some versatility from day to day and we have some days where only live mullet work and others where nothing takes them. When this occurs, try to cut your mullet with 3 vertical slits on each side or small mullet steaks and drop it down for redfish gratification. We still use jigs for this and don’t forget to tighten your drag enough to turn them from the rocks quickly or they’ll break you. I always look for clear water and the jetties act as an enormous chokepoint. For fishing outside the rocks, I have found that peak through the last of the low tide works best and the last two hours or so of low tide if fishing inside the river. Flounder have picked up around the big rocks and we’ve got them on live finger mullet and jigs but I’ll be switching to Carolina rigs with 12” leaders and kahle hooks to target them specifically. This is my favorite fish to catch and eat because of the challenge sometimes posed with catching them as well as the white tasty fillets they make! (What to Expect) The bait run should remain fired up and a cooling trend over the next week brings hopes of lower water temps with flounder and trout to follow en masse. The best days to fish, in my opinion, are going to be October 1st – 3rd, 15th -19th, & 27th – 31st. Until next time! Fair Winds & Following Seas, Capt Kris Kell
Mixed Bag Following Hermine
Mixed Bag Following Hermine
Sep 11, 2016 Jacksonville
13 September 2016 Welcome to Fish Whisperer Charters in Jacksonville, FL! After vacation and Hurricane Hermine, I was able to get a full week of fishing in and although it started out slow, it became hot very quickly around the Mayport jetties as enormous schools of mullet exploded in waves while being crushed by predators. My charters this week have started out at sunrise on the outgoing tide mostly on the North jetties as the primary fishing ground due to better water clarity, slightly cooler water temperature (83° on the surface), and a great chokepoint for the mullet run that many are already aware of. Once I took position along the rocks, the tide would push bait past us and the action was non-stop until the tide slacked up. Plenty of redfish, both slots and oversized, were taken and the occasional shark would quickly reduce the size of the reds. Tarpon are still rolling in the midst of all the bait and trout, pompano, and jacks were all biting alongside the redfish. Following some inshore action, I went offshore three out of the last five days and figured out a few things. The first one being that the kingfish bite has been iced and the only species we took on the troll were barracudas. Doesn’t mean they won’t fire up as there were a few catches this past week from other boats but it’s certainly not what it was prior to Hermine. The second thing is that there is a lot of debris (stumps, trash, etc.) that poses a hazard to navigation but also holds plenty of bait, undersized tripletail, and pompano. So if you spot some, take a moment to investigate. Finally, the bottom bite has improved immensely with the disappearance of the thermocline in the area. We caught seabass, red snapper, vermillion (beeliners), porgy, and cobia on reefs and ledges within 15-20 miles using pogies and mullet. (TTPs - Tactics, Techniques, & Procedures) For jetty fishing, we have used 1/8 – 1/4oz jigs with finger mullet with **hidden content** series reels and 20-30lbs braid, at least 3ft of 30-40lbs fluorocarbon leader attached with a small swivel, and chartreuse or pearl jig colors. I like the lighter weight jigs because it reduces the amount of snags and allows the clients to feel more of what is happening below the surface. I teach them to toss the bait towards the rocks, hold the rod tip up initially then lower it once the bait begins to sink. Once the first bump is felt on a piece of structure, I’ll have them raise the tip again to stay in touch with the bottom to prevent a snag. We’ll repeat this process until a strike or the bait is settled under the boat. For the bull reds, I'll use a 5500 series or more to minimize the toll it takes on the fish and I'll tie a dropper rig for quick weight change-out and prevention of being hung on the rocks. Sometimes, if the rig does become hung, we can pull it out much easier than a hook on the bottom or we just lose the weight, which is easily replaced and sent back down instead of re-tying the entire rig. You will most likely get wrapped on the rocks at some point when the strong redfish takes you to school; however, be patient and don’t break the line. Just give it slack or strum the line and wait a moment and you may save the fish. We’ve done it a few times this week! (What to Expect) The bait run will continue to improve the fishing in the area and following the winds and rain expected this week, it should be on fire. Water temps will cool and migratory species will be active with most anything on the list of possibilities, including my favorite…flounder. The best days to fish, in my opinion, are going to be 15th–18th & 29th-30th. If there are ever any questions, just post them up on my Facebook Page and I'll do my best to get back with you. Catch em' up and stay safe! Until next time... Fair Winds & Following Seas, Capt Kris Kell

Customer Reviews

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4.93
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out of 5 stars from 81 reviews
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Fantastic fishing trip with Capt. Kris Kell
Fantastic fishing trip with Capt. Kris Kell
Fantastic fishing trip with Capt. Kris Kell
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Angler Rating
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Appropriate for children
99%
Satisfied with the boat
99%
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Daniel G.
Del Mar, CA
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Fantastic fishing trip with Capt. Kris Kell

VERIFIED   NEW  Full Day Trip on April 7, 2021
Kris Kell is the best. Great boat. Awesome attitude. Supreme knowledge.
Daniel G. recommends Fish Whisperer Charters LLC
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Andrew M.
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Fishing with Kristopher

VERIFIED   NEW  Half Day Trip (PM) on April 5, 2021
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Antoine M.
New York, NY
Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent  5.00
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March fishing trip

VERIFIED   NEW  Half Day Trip (PM) on March 28, 2021
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Shane H.
Ocala, Florida
Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent  5.00
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Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Overall

Half day trip with Captain Chris

VERIFIED   Half Day Trip (PM) on August 13, 2020
Great trip Capt. Chris will put you on the fish. Does a fantastic job. Would recommend this trip to anyone.
Shane H. recommends Fish Whisperer Charters LLC
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Denver H.
Delaware, OH
Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent  5.00
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Fishing with Kristopher

VERIFIED   Half Day Trip (AM) on July 29, 2020
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