Fishing Report: Capt. Dave Sipler's Sport Fishing - Jacksonville, St. Johns River/Inlet & near-coastal waters. Updated: 1/03/06
Looking forward to another great year!.
I sure did have a great start to 2006. I had Brian and Jay Nichter on board the morning of Jan. 1st and they sure did have a ball, and so did I. I went to pick them up and it was cool and clear, but by the time they arrived at the dock the fog had rolled in and was super thick. Just what I didn't want because I was in a real hurry to get on the fish, during that tide stage. But we got to our destination in about 20 minutes and started waxin' them right off the bat.
The big St. Johns river and seas outside the inlet were slick calm, as an eery fog horn blew from a ship approaching the mouth of the inlet. As the fog horn sounded the ship got closer and closer, but we couldn't see it, and I knew it was outside the inlet by maybe 100 feet away. A 500' long container ship probably, and the fog was so thick there wasn't a single foot that could be seen from where we were safely anchored. That's some thick fog!!!!
My guys played "when ya gonna catch one" as Brian, Jays dad started wearing-out the Trout and also caught a 4 pound Sheepshead. But as the day ended, and we boxed a huge pile of beautiful Trout and another Sheepshead, Jay really ended the day with a bang.
I took them to an area reserved for only when I have a 1 or 2 passenger charter. Because, this spot is tough to fish. Ya' have to be on top of your game. And too many lines in the water will spoil the area, to sort of say. I briefed the fella's on the how-to's of fishing this tight area, and gave them a quick demo......without a bait pinned on a float-rig, so I didn't mistakenly catch one. (because I wanted them to catch'em). Then Jay pitched into the spot and let his float drift about two feet and then he got "sand-bagged". A term I use for a Trout eating your shrimp and it doesn't even know yet that it's hooked. Jay reeled tight and came back with a heavy bend in his rod, I grabbed the landing net and peered into the dark tannin stained St. Johns river water and saw a big fat Speck! It was a fatty.
I reached out and slipped the fish into the net and sure enough it was Jay's biggest fish of the day. A 4+pound, 23" Speckled Trout to be proud of. And it couldn't have worked out any better. Then Jays dad Brian slammed dunked another nice one right after. So we ended the day with two big Trout on this one spot, and had a fish box of fish to clean. So we moseyed on back to the dock for ritual picture taking and filleting of the nights meal. They had many hungry mouths to feed that night and I'm sure the taste of the pursuit and challenge, will linger for quite a while.
So what can you look forward to in the next month or so????
Days just like Brian and Jay had!
Yeah, I know. I'm optimistic. Because I love fishing! I'll take the good and the bad. I know the weather in the winter isn't perfect, but that's what makes it challenging. If the fish just jumped into the cooler as you stood there, that wouldn't be much fun for you either, would it. It sure would be funny, that's for sure.
Last month's report was about why this is my favorite time of year. So without repeating myself, it still is.....fishing wise. Yes, not all species of what I'm targeting are easy to get on every trip. And sometimes it's more of one, over another. But variety is still attainable. It's just based on what the weather's doing really, that's all.
If you're not familiar with our local weather, here's a example. Yesterday, Monday 1/2/06, I was surf fishing with a friend. As we stood on the beach catching Whiting, it was 78 degrees, with a south westerly wind. We were both bare footed and sun burnt. Now, as of this weekend they say we here in N.E. Florida especially the "inland areas" could have a hard freeze.....that's several hours of below 32 degrees! I'm glad I live on the coast! I'm writing this report on Weds the 3rd, and it warm and sunny, flip-flop wearin' weather. And it all could change VERY fast. I know, it's really goofy, but that's our winter weather for ya'...
All that aside, the Speckled Trout will continue to chew, and so will the local yellowmouth Trout, along with Sheepshead and Redfish.
REMEMBER, if your a Speck nut like I am get them this month because for the 28 days of February they are closed for harvest. We can still catch them, but we have to release them. Believe me, I'm glad it's only 28 days, too. I do catch some serious whopper Trout in February, but we just make them famous in photos, not during dinner!
Check my "recent catch" pages, and my "daily reports forum" to get up to date info on what's going on. Plus don't forget to check the weather for your charter here on this page, where it says Pilot Dock Weather Station. That's a link that directs you to the current conditions right from where I leave from in Mayport.
Lets go fishin'
JACKSONVILLE, WHERE FLORIDA BEGINS.
Till next tide,
Capt. Dave Sipler's Sport Fishing
904-642-9546- (8am-8pm EST)
St. Johns River & Inlet; Mayport / Jacksonville, Florida
If you would like my fishing report emailed to you on a monthly basis email me and I'll put you on the list.
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