Mad Son Fishing, West Palm Beach, Fl

January 21, 2016 by George Bradbury

Trip Info

The Catch
Snapper (Yellowtail)

Fishing Report January 21, 2016

The reason for this Thursday trip was 1) I was afraid I might forget how to fish, & 2) This was the best day weather-wise for the week & into the weekend. The other fishermen aboard the Mad Son were Luis, Captain Charlie, his friend from Maryland , Mike, and a fellow on vacation from Long Island , Brian. Captain George took us out to 130 feet or so, stopping once to check the current before finding a likely spot to drift. The sunrise was borderline spectacular.

Luis started things off with an African Pompano that just a half inch shy of the required 24″ minimum fork length. The snapper bite started slow, although Charlie did get a keeper mutton snapper early on. There were a lot of bent rods, but at the beginning, not a lot of groceries. We caught a lot of good sized blue runners. I kept a half dozen for making fish dip. We also caught a lot of remoras. Once Mike got the hang of fishing with a chicken rig, he did alright, catching several decent porgies, including two at a time on one occasion.

I had a bite & cranked fast , hooking up to a decent fish. At first I didn’t realize how decent. After thirty seconds or so, I thought perhaps it had been eaten by a shark, but now I believe the fish just realized late that it was hooked. A couple of trips back, I made the mistake of cranking down the drag during the battle & lost the fish. This time, I still might lose the fish, but not for that reason. The outfit was my new Penn Warfare 30 level wind, loaded with 400 yards of 30# test, with a 40# leader & a 2/0 Owner light wire circle hook. At one point, I asked George if he wanted to chase the fish, but it was about then that I gained some control of it. I fought the beast for what seemed like 20 minutes, but was probably less, then it decided to swim away from the bow of the boat. I passed the rod to Rohman, who fought the good fight from up on the bow until the fish changed tactics & I took back over for a bit before the battle moved back to the bow again. George may have thought it was a shark, at least for part of the fight, and I heard someone accuse it of being a kingfish. I was not sure what I had on, but was pretty sure it was neither of those. When Rohman announced color & called it silver, I had high hopes of it being a large African Pompano, but it turned out to be a 37.5# Amberjack. There were quite a few parasites in the tail portion, but plenty of usable meat in the rest of it. Some will go on the smoker, some in the hot oil. Rohman & I were both impressed by the performance of the Penn reel.

For nearly an hour, a Coast Guard helicopter was hovering about a mile south of us, apparently doing a training exercise, getting their guys practiced in air-sea rescue.

The latter part of the trip turned out to be more productive than the earlier part. We ended the trip with 8 porgies, 7 yellowtail snappers, one mutton snapper, and one grey trigger, as well as the AJ. The flat line accounted for, with Captain Charlie doing the honors, a 24″ mahi. A nice variety of edible fish, and a very enjoyable trip. Thanks to George & Rohman for doing their usual great job of putting us on fish & baited up. I am not certain when the next exciting deep-sea adventure will be, but certainly no later than next Friday morning. ~~Greg~~

Book your trip with Mad Son Fishing Charters