Big Fish Little Lines
Report Date: May 31, 2003
Light tackle was the game the last 3 days, and we won. Benji Hiller and his son Gabriel fished Wednesday, Thursday and Friday with us. Their good friend Jack joined them Thursday and Friday. Wednesday Gab caught a sailfish on 6 pound test followed by another on 4 pound test line. He and his dad also got several bonito and a couple kingfish on the light line. In the evening, Benji got a tarpon over 100 pounds on 6 pound line. This fish took 90 minutes. Gab almost did the same, but after an hour his line fouled in the line from another boat and broke. We had been within inches of a catch a couple times, but it wasn?t meant to be. Gab finished off the night with a tarpon about 120 pounds on 20 pound tackle. Even with the 20 pound tackle the fight was 45 minutes.
Thursday the prime goal was to get Jack his first sailfish. We did that in the first hour using 12 pound line. After that fish we fished only 6 and 8 pound line the rest of the day. We got a couple kingfish, numerous bonitos, a 26 pound blackfin tuna on 6 pound line, a 29 pound blackfin tuna on 8 pound line and 2 more sailfish on 6 pound line.
Friday fishing got only better. All the fishing we had done was off Key Biscayne in around 100 feet of water. We used live pilchards and some herring on 7/0 Eagle Claw 2004EL circle hooks. Friday we got 6 sailfish on 6 pound line. We also got several bonito and a kingfish. We ended the day by fighting a sailfish on 4 pound line for 2 hours and 45 minutes. Twice we were only 4 or 5 inches from the 15 foot leader. When you reach the leader the fish is considered caught in most circles. After all that time the line broke at the leader. It was quite a fight.
In three days we raised 14 sailfish. We caught 11, broke 6 pound line on one (we forgot to check the drag after the previous catch), broke 4 pound line on the long fight and wound the bait out of the mouth of one sailfish. That is 13 hooked of 14 raised on those circle hooks that we keep hearing don?t work. The Eagle Claw 2004EL will catch fish better than most Jhooks if you learn to use them.
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