FISH FLASH: The ups and downs of winter fishing

Tina Harbuck

Neither cold, wind, rain or rough seas can keep a good fisherman down.

Earlier this week, fishermen braved the cold temps one day and then experienced a lot of ups and downs the next as the Gulf was rough — but they still got their fish.

“When I got here at 6 this morning (Tuesday) the deck was iced over,” said deckhand Mike Miller on the Destin Princess with Capt. Reid Phillips.

“I would have put water on it, but it would have just iced over,” he said.

However, when everybody finally started arriving for the day of fishing, “everybody went in the cabin because the heater was on,” Miller said.

The temperature was in the 30s and 40s on Tuesday, but the anglers braved the cool temps and pulled in some good catches.

Angelo Colontino of Ontario filled his stringer with triggerfish and mingo.

“I had a good time. It was just perfect. I’m used to the cold,” Colontino said.

Robert Adler of Michigan landed his share of mingo and triggerfish.

“It was alright, but 10 degrees warmer would have been good,” Adler said.

Wednesday was a bit warmer, but the wind kicked up and made for some rough seas.

“It was solid five and sixes and sometimes eight-footers,” said Capt. Dennis Kendrick of the Destiny.

“It was supposed to be two and three,” he said, noting his 44 anglers braved some high seas.

“We worked for them today,” said Richard Armbruster of Panama City Beach as he and his buddies held up their stringer filled with mingo, triggerfish and amberine.

It was so rough a few boats turned around and some canceled at the last minute.

Peter and Margaret Haddix of Michigan said they had a good time but it was quite rough. The couple, who is used to fishing on Lake Michigan, filled their stringer with mingo and triggerfish.

Fishing was good even in the crazy weather conditions. Grab a jacket and come on down.

See you at the docks.