Fishermen brave rough seas for good catches

Tina Harbuck

Some called it choppy while others called it sporty. Some were even bolder and said they were 20-footers. Either way you call it, it was rough on the Gulf of Mexico Thursday as fishermen tried to reel in a catch or two.

“Anybody that stuck it out today was a trooper,” said first mate Jan-Michael Garcia on the Un Reel.

He and his group aboard the Un Reel with Capt. Justin Destin came in with a decent catch of mingo and few white snapper.

“We had to work for these … I promise you,” Garcia said.

Not only was it a bit rough but they had to contend with the dolphin eating their fish.

Kentucky anglers on the Mighty Fine with Capt. Bud Miller were the ones who were calling it “20-footers” on Thursday. However, deckhand Nick Bulger said it was more than what the weatherman was calling for. The Kentucky guys still managed to catch a few mingo, a king mackerel and a few bonito.

Local anglers on the Sea Fix with Capt. Jason Hallmark came in from a six-hour Thursday with mingo, a lane snapper and one mahi mahi.

“It was pretty choppy this morning,” Hallmark said, noting it was getting better on the way in.

Texas anglers on the Destination with Capt. Stan Phillips filled the racks with mingo and white snapper, while the group aboard the Fish N Teem with Capt. Paul Cox brought in mingo, white snapper and bonito.

Anglers from Pittsburgh, Tennessee and South Carolina teamed up on the No Alibi with Capt. Chris Schofield for a good catch of mingo, white snapper, bonito and one cobia.

“It just came up off the bottom,” captain said.

When asked about the condition of the seas Schofield was quick to say it was “pretty choppy.”

They weren’t the only ones to pull in a cobia Thursday.

Word is the group aboard the Kitchen Pass with Capt. Travis Ream pulled in a cobia.

Capt. Zach Wolfe on the Malia Ann and his group hauled in a cobia, three king mackerel and a few mingo. Captain said that’s the 10th cobia this week for him. Wolfe also said he threw back a bunch that were a few inches too short. Cobia has to be 34 inches to keep.

Right at 1 p.m. Thursday, three boats pulled in at Fishing Fleet Marina, Sea Winder, High Cotton and Lucky Lina.

Capt. Chris Couvillion on the Sea Winder and his group of anglers pulled in a big amberjack, mingo and white snapper.

Couvillion said it was something else on the water. They had rain, lightning, wind and rough seas. As a matter of fact, he said he was still seeing streaks of light come across his eyes as they hung up the fish.

Capt. TJ George on the High Cotton and his group put four big amberjack on the racks to go along with their mingo, white snapper and Almaco Jack.

“We got big fish and we got little fish,” George said. “We also had calm seas, choppy seas, lighting and rain … we covered it all.”

Alabama anglers on the Lucky Lina with Capt. Steve Lathi brought in a good haul. They had two, almost three, amberjack, a black snapper, several amberine, mingo and white snapper. The “almost” amberjack suffered at the jaws of a shark.

Captain they had the ’jack about 10-feet from the boat when the shark snapped it off, leaving pretty much nothing but the head.

When asked what kind of a shark it was, the answer was “a big one.”

Fishing is still pretty good right now, but be ready to brave some rough seas.

See you at the docks.