After reeling in his first king mackerel as a young boy, he’s had a passion for fishing.
And today, Jamie Grimmer is at the helm of the charter boat Shock’n Yall, which docks just to the east of Galati’s.
Although Grimmer likes to live-bait fish and troll offshore, the 23-year-old captain gets a lot of charters for shark fishing.
“It seems like that’s what people want to do,” Grimmer said. “People even call us ‘Shark’n Yall’ instead of ‘Shock’n Yall.’ ”
“Shark fishing is really pretty easy,” he said.
Find a wreck, toss out the chum and wait for the bite. And you don’t have to go far, he said. Shark can be found 1 to 5 miles off the beach.
“There’s a lot of tiger shark out there,” Grimmer said, noting the tiger seems to have moved in close since they were banned.
“You can’t keep ‘em, but we catch ’em,” he said.
As a matter of fact, in July, Grimmer and crew landed a 500-pound tiger shark. He also pulled in a 347-pound bull shark.
“A tiger puts up the bigger fight,” Grimmer said. “He hauls ass. He runs, then he’ll dive to the bottom.” And when he goes to the bottom, “It’s like reeling up a Volkswagen.”
Earlier in the summer, Capt. Grimmer and the crew aboard the Shock’n Yall took top honors in the ladies division of the Ronald McDonald Big Mac Shootout for wahoo and king mackerel.
He and his crew also won a little company tournament this summer for the biggest fish and overall weight. They landed a dozen dolphins and a 100-pound white marlin.
“I like catching dolphin and marlin,” Grimmer said. “I like it when they jump … greyhound and show their tails off.”
Grimmer, who got his captains licenses in 2010, started coming to Destin to fish when he was a kid.
“My family has been coming here since I was a born,” said the Alabama native.
When he turned 14 he started working as a deckhand on the Vixen for Capt. Neill Finkel. From the Vixen he moved over to the Little Nemo. After that he worked on a couple of boats out of Fort Walton Beach.
Capt. Finkel, a friend of the family, had been after him to get his license and he finally did. In the summer of 2011 Grimmer started running the Shock’n Yall, also owned by Finkel.
The Shock’n Yall is a 1966 34-foot Hatteras, complete with air conditioning, TV and three live wells that can hold 2,000 baits.
Although he’s content on the Shock’n Yall for now, Grimmer said he wants to get a job as a captain on a private boat one day and fish tournaments.
One thing is for sure; he’s hooked on fishing.
“It got in my blood and I had a passion for it,” he said after he landed that 15-pound king as a youngster. “You’ve got to have a passion for it, if you want to do it in this industry.”
To book a trip aboard the Shock’n Yall call Grimmer at 259-0485 or 205-616-6476. For an interactive guide to the entire fishing fleet, see thedestinlog.com