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May is here & with it the promise of fair skies & plenty of fish. Sounds good to me & I can only hope it happens that way. Again looking forward to reading some great reports. For me this next week end will be Poontangle XVII. This started in 2000 when a bunch who had only talked on computer, I think it was the Virtual Flyshop, decided to stop talking about going to the Keys & just go. It was a week-end hosted by Bob & Kathy Brown living on No-Name-Key, About 20 showed up from all around Florida & N.J. & it has continued since then with #s approaching as many as 45 -50. We hosted it for the last 8 or so years & this year we turned it over to a couple who live on Big Pine Key. Looking forward to seeing some old friends. Tight lines & good fishing.
 

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Tide was close to correct at 5 this AM so went to one of my areas & had to wait for the tide but wasn't light until 7 or so & I had over an hour of outgoing. Water was full of finger mullet but very few tarpon were eating & I received no takes. Tended stone crab traps, mediocre, 2 1/2 lbs. Fished in the sea trout area & had some small snappers but no trout. Wind was under 10 FINALLY.
 

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Got 6 nice trout today. Guess all it took was some good rain to make them bite. It was like old times.
 

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Ron, looks like you have had some wind down south too. At least you can get some of those stone crabs. They are better than the fish anyday.

Canceled a couple of charters this week due to the wind and couldn't find a decent day to even do a personal trip. Again due to the wind. I looked at my wind gauge and the weather and all I seem to see is winds in the high teens to mid 20's an mainly from the wrong direction. Raced remote control sailboats up in Mt Laurel today. We had good winds and a couple of brief showers. On the way home I stopped at a lake to try from some pickerel and just as I was getting my gear ready it started pouring pretty hard so I just got in the car and headed home. Probably the slowest salt water start that I can remember. My boat has been in the water for close to a month and the constant heavy winds day after day have kept me at the dock. Sooner or later we should see some nice weather. People keep calling me and asking me how the fishing is. First hand, I really do not know. There should be some fish around.
 

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Finally got out fishing today. There was a change in the wind forecast for this afternoon. Wind was blowing from the north north west and was to die down by 2:00 pm. Decided to fish the incoming tide in the ocean. Left the dock at 3:00 pm. Wind had not lighten up like predicted. We headed out to fish the ocean. Ocean was flat except for the good breeze blowing from the land. Water was 54 to 55 degrees and nice and clean. We worked to get in the lee of the shore and started fishing right outside the beach break. We caught most of our fish in 4 to 8 feet of water working about a 1/2 mile of beach and a few fish around the inlet.

Second cast of the day got my first saltwater fish of the year. A small 13 inch striper.

My buddy Peter and I fished for 3 hours and had a pretty good pick of small stripers from 13 to 15 1/2 inches and bluefish to about 3 pounds. We caught 22 fish in total, all using sinking line and chartreuse/white clousers. Kept 4 bluefish for a dinner and released everything else.


It was fun to finally get out on the water and get a few fish. While working the shallow water we did spook a big fish under the boat in about 6 feet of water. It looked like it was following my fly and just went down under the boat. It was huge and looked to be about 4 feet long. Could not tell if it was a extra big striper or a drum fish. It just happen so fast and could get a real good look. Wind finally started dying out as we headed back to the dock.
 

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Got 6 nice trout today. Guess all it took was some good rain to make them bite. It was like old times.
no trout for me, yet, this season. yesterday, I couldn't get anything to commit to a fly over at birch grove, all nips/follows/short strikes. definitely wierd, as I kept checking to see if my hook had broken.
was using small nymphs off a big well "greased" stimulator with various retrieves, PT, Prince, then later went to a maribou muddler. nada.

Congrats, Ray, on the ocean action!
 

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Well done Ray. Sorry your not connecting Rob-YET. Went 1 for 2 on tarpon last night. Midnight - 3 AM. First one in the last bunch of trips. Anxious for tonight. Wish I could get photo bucket to work like it used to. Any useful help?
 

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We had the bluefish tonight. Fillets broiled in butter and lemon juice and then smothered in green peppers, tomatoes and onions till the veggies are soft. It is one of my favorite fish. I cut out any of the red sections in the fish and there is no fishy taste to them at all.

Ron, getting some tarpon action sounds good. Fishing in the middle of the night sounds tiring come day break. Don't know why you are having a problem. I use photobucket and it seems to work just like it always did.
 

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Bluefish sounds good. Always liked the2-4pounders. I'll look at again. Might be my stubby fingers. Yes the sleep patterns are tough this time of year. Lots of napping during the day. so far okay. Tonight starting at 1:15. Have never seen such a light tidal flow for a full moon Seems to make for better flow. Tons of bait but I have not seen any evidence of a worm hatch.
 

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If it is like up here the evening tide has the strong flow and the morning high has the much lighter flow. Check your local tide table for the water level at high tide on both tides and you should see the difference. We have had strong northeast winds and heavy rains this morning, making you think twice about even going out. I have canceled charters and haven't wanted to fish the heavy winds on the days I am free. Tried some freshwater on the way home yesterday from a trip. I fished 2 hours only to have three small hits, catching a 8 inch large mouth. Not much to get excited about.
 

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Can't get the right weather days when I have charters scheduled. So far I keep get heavy winds or heavy rain and wind and have to keep canceling. Today was a fairly nice day and I had to go out and at least scout around. It turned out to be a much better fishing day than I thought it would be. Called a couple of friends last minute and they couldn't make it. I didn't expect too much as I was going to fish the out going tide around 11:30 am and the high tide was a very low high with on 3.9 feet for water at high so I knew there would be a very poor flow of current.
Knowing I was going to have bright sun a poor tidal flow and a fairly good wind I had low expectations as I headed to the back bay to fish tidal flows out of small creeks. First creek in 3 feet of water got three small stripers all around 18 to 181/2 inches. Water was 57 to 60 degrees in the back.



Second creek I found 4 stripers and missed one, these were all 23 to 25 inches long and everything was taking a chartreuse/white clouser on intermediate line.


Third creek I got two more bass with one being the best of the day at 26 inches long.

After the water got two low I moved and worked two rip lines where I picked up more stripers and caught a 33 inch bluefish that pulled me into my backing a bit. Had another one about the same size bite me off and landed another smaller blue about 3 lbs. Kept the larger bluefish for dinner.


Wind had kicked up a bit and I quit around 3:30 pm after catching 15 bass and 2 bluefish. On the way back to the dock I decided to shoot out to the ocean an check the beachfront for tomorrow afternoons charter. Water was nice and clean and around 56 degrees. Tried a few casts but no hits but did see a nice bald eagle sitting on the inlet jetty as I was heading in. Not looking good for tomorrows trip as the are calling for winds in the 20's (not great fly fishing weather.)
 

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Testing. If this works, This fish was caught during the day Friday in a 14 ft natural channel surrounded by 2 - 4 ft flats, close to Monkey Key Oceanside, where NASA late 50s (?) raised the monkeys for early space flights. Little sporty with the wind., FL12wt with large white Capt BobLeMay fly.

 

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Beautiful looking fish caught during daylight making it even better for seeing the jumps. Way to go! Plus you got the photo thing working. Looks like life is good in the keys and when it is too windy to fish you can always pull your stone crab traps for a nice meal.

I am sitting on the dock of the bay today. We had winds in the 20's gusting to 28 at the time we were to leave the dock. With two freshwater guys with little saltwater fly fishing experience it would of not been any fun. I wouldn't even want to go out and fish personally unless I was chumming and sitting in the lee of a nice cabin. We had a few gusts that hit 30 and that was back at the house and not on a big open area.
 

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and by the way, Ray, congrats on the outing... not sure how you made out yesterday, but in the morning some club members did ok at one of the inlets on foot.

blues and some small stripers, I think.
 

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After canceling yesterdays trip due to wind and not having a trip for today, I was doing yard work and noticed the wind was very light and would be a good day to fish. I called up a couple of friends for a quick afternoon trip. We left the dock at 12:30 to fish the out going tide in the back bay. Found the water back there very clean and 60 degrees. Water was too nice. I could actually see bottom almost everywhere we fished, which is very unusual down here anymore. It was even a tougher tide than what I fished on Monday as there was only 3 feet 6 inches of high water making for a very sluggish tidal flow at all creek mouths and rip lines. Even with all the bright sun and blue skies we found 7 bass and one bluefish that took chartreuse/white clousers on intermediate lines.

I got the first fish and the nicest one of the day. It looked to be a hybrid bass as it was 22 inches long and chunker than most fish that size.

The other two friends got small stripers and a 3 lb bluefish. Paul was going to keep the blue for dinner, but at the dock decided he didn't feel like cleaning it so we released unharmed out of the live well.



Near the end of our trip the wind shifted from the west to the south and picked up a bit and we called it a day and were back to the dock by 4:00 pm. We had fun afternoon and got some fish.
 

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My charter today had trouble getting down so we got a super late start. We never left the dock till 10:00 am. We headed to the ocean to fish the incoming tide. Found the water to be around 56 degrees and super clean. Again it was a very poor incoming tide with only 3.5 feet of movement. With the clear blue sky and clear water I knew it was going to be a bit tough at best, but he caught a small striper and about a 3 lb bluefish with another bluefish biting him off.

Around noon there was enough water in the back to try some areas in the back bay. Again with the bright sun and super clean water fishing was tough. We worked a number of spots getting 3 more stripers, another bluefish and missing a few more stripers that would follow the fly and then turn away at the last second. This was the nicest bass of the day.

We used sinking line in the ocean and intermediate line in the back bay and everything hit chartreuse/white clousers. Not hot fishing, he had to work hard for every fish but a fun day with less than idea conditions.
 

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Glad you found some Ray. Tough here with the wind Wed. dark AM no bites. Wed PM dark 2/3. Really tough with 20+mph wind. Was from the East, so a little shelter. Tuff fishing though.
 

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Finally broke the saltwater skunk at Corson's last evening with the club. Slow evening from everything I saw, but got a 3lb blue, and lost another. Saw a couple of sardine sized striped bass caught, and at least 1 bigger blue caught by a spin guy but that was it. Some guys were staying til after dark, but having forgot a jacket or even a long sleeve shirt, I wimped out and left just after sunset :D
 

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I have slowed down on fishing lately, too much other stuff going on. Ray, I agree that one bass you got sure looks like a hybrid. May very well be one.

One thing I have done that's fishing related was to add some self-leveling tabs to my little mud skiff so it would finally run correctly. And I switched the prop out for a lower pitch with more blades. Hoping this will do the trick with planing and whatnot. It's never been right since the day I bought it. I need to get it in the water to test. Not sure when that will be though.
 
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