The charter and party boats that are going out are bringing in some good catches, they just haven’t had many sponsors the last few days.
On Monday, a handful of boats went out and brought back baskets full of fish.
Anglers on the Gulf Breeze with Capt. John Gibson came in from a four-hour trip with four or five baskets full of mingo, white snapper and a lane snapper in the mix.
Gibson said they had 23 people and 210 fish. Plus he said they threw back about 70 triggerfish.
Capt. Mike Graef and Groovy on the Huntress came in just before lunch with a big king mackerel and several mingo.
“We started the day with the king. So it was a good start,” Groovy said.
Brandon Mulhall of Chicago was the angler that reeled in the king.
Tennessee anglers on the Makaira with Capt. B. J. Teems came in with three king mackerel, a mahi mahi and several mingo. Word is they also had a sailfish on momentarily before it spit the hook.
Ohio and Texas anglers on the Bow’d Up with Capt. Brady Bowman pulled in a mackerel, a couple of bonito and several mingo.
All these fishing trips are just a warm up for the 69th annual Destin Fishing Rodeo, which will be here before you know it. The Rodeo runs the entire month of October on the docks behind AJ’s Seafood and Oyster Bar with the scales open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily. The Rodeo draws anglers from all over the United States and they have a chance to compete for cash prizes, rod and reels and vacation stays. And most of all, bragging rights for catching the big ones.
But before that happens, folks will have the chance to come out and meet Miss Destin Rachel McMullen, who will reign over the 69th annual Destin Fishing Rodeo. At 6 p.m. Sept. 21 at the Inn on Destin Harbor there will be an introduction party held in her honor. All captains, crew, anglers and volunteers are invited to this annual tradition.
But if you want to get in on the fish action, this is the weekend to do it.
The AJ’s Big Mac Classic, which is part of the Southern Kingfish Association, is set to go Sept. 23-24.
The annual tournament is an all king mackerel event.
Last year, the two-day fish tournament was won by anglers aboard the CJ with a 56.4-pounder and a 56.8-pounder for “big mac” honors.
Entry fee for the tournament is $350, which is good for two dinner tickets to the Captain’s dinner from 4-9 p.m., on Friday, Sept. 22, at AJ’s Seafood and Oyster Bar located on Destin harbor. Boats will be able to register at the dinner.
The scales will be open daily behind AJ’s. On Saturday, the scales will be open from 3-7 p.m. and then from noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday.
Another fish event on tap the next few days is the 2017 Swordy Shootout held out of Boshamp’s Seafood and Oyster House along Destin harbor.
The captain’s meeting is at 7:30 p.m., Sept. 21.
Lines in the water for this tournament start at daylight Sept. 22.
The scales will be open Saturday and Sunday from 4-8:30 p.m. at Boshamp’s.
Awards will be given for the biggest swordfish, aggregate swordfish, biggest dolphin, tuna and wahoo. Plus there is a video tag and release division.
There’s a $10,000 guarantee for the biggest swordfish.
So as you see, there’s a lot of fishing tournaments on tap to get you geared up for the Rodeo.
See you at the docks.