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Tarpon, tarpon, and more tarpon!! By the way, did I mention that tarpon fishing has been outstanding. Just wanted to make sure that you understand that tarpon fishing has been red hot. The wind has been howling, however, that hasn't effected the tarpon none in the least. Government Cut is the place and live shrimp has been the ticket. Throw in Berkley Alive Gulp Shrimp and you have all the bases covered. After that it's just a matter of figuring out where the fish are feeding on any given night. Like with all fishing, there has been a night here and there when the fish have played a bit more scarce than on other nights.

Pete & Matt Schwartz along with Dexter Romanez, and Gary Schaffer had one goal in mind. That is to have Dexter experience the thrill of catching his first tarpon. Our first shot came just after setting out the baits and moving the rods to new positions on the boat during the dusk period. Gary was in front of the rod that got hit and despite being told not to grab a rod that got hit, he couldn't resist himself. The fish made a complete circle of the boat before heading for the jetties. It made its second jump at that point and gave us back our hook. The action slowed and we moved to the Bay. No action there and it was back out to Government Cut. No action there so off to Haulover we went. On our last drift of the evening, we got our reward. Dexter got his chance and he made the best of it. The fish pulled hard and made several beautiful jumps before we released it to fight again. Goal accomplished.

Mike Riccardi and Ted Brillon experienced an evening like mentioned in the above report. The only expectation was that we hung in at Government and got 2 shots. The first fish was caught and released by Ted. The second came off on the tarpon's first jump. The shrimp ran heavily for about 5 minutes and tarpon were blasting them off the surface in a feeding frenzy. They managed to avoid our baits and as soon as I reset the drift, they shut off. The evening ended 1 for 2.

The next evening, everything changed. Rocky Taranto and his friends Brian Gallagher and Randy Fisher were taking a brief vacation from the cold weather up north and wanted some tarpon action. It took 2 drifts and off we went to the deep water of the main channel chasing a not to happy tarpon that was giving Rocky fits. After about 30 minutes, Rocky won the battle and watched as the tarpon swam off quickly after being released. Back outside, the action continued. Brian had his turn and Randy his. The evening ended with the anglers winning the fight 3 of 5 times.

The next day, the same group was offshore. The wind was E/ESE @ 14 - 18 knots. There was little to no current. The water had a decent color and all these conditions had the fish spread out. Everyone on the radio was complaining about basically slow fishing. We had a spread of kite, flatline, and downrigger baits and worked the water from 80 - 250 feet. At the end of the trip, we saw action with dolphin, bonito, spanish mackerel, and bluerunners.

A few evening later, Rocky, Brian, and Randy were getting their last fishing trip in before heading home to a major snow storm. A front was pushing through our area and we had wind from the W/WNW @ 20 - 26 knots. We made a few brief stops at Haulover before heading down to Government Cut that resulted in one bluerunner. When we arrived at Government, the tarpon were rolling everywhere in the main channel. We put out a bait and in less than 5 minutes, we had him on. Once again it was Rocky on the rod. This tarpon never jumped and fought deep during the entire fight. The fight went back and forth with the tarpon in charge most of the time. Gain 10 feet and lose 15 feet was the mode for the first 20 minutes. We had to dodge a large container ship going out to sea, but that was no problem. The bigger problem was the physical whipping the fish was putting on Rocky. He hung in and after 45 minutes he got the reward he was looking for. The 110 pound tarpon came along side the boat for a few quick pictures before shaking its head and throwing the hook. By now, we were out to the dog leg in the channel. Back to the south side and on the next drift we had another fish on for a brief moment. A few drifts later Randy caught his tarpon. A couple more drifts and once again Randy did battle. This time the fish ran out from the boat turned around and charged the boat. It made two jumps at boat side, one of which almost landed on the engines. The fish ran out and made two more jumps about 50 feet away before charging off again. The fish made another run, turned around, and charged the boat again. This fish was absolutely wild. When it got back to the boat, it made two more jumps, slamming into the side of the boat and soaking all of us as it exploded away from us again. Randy had his hands full just trying to keep a tight line. Despite all the tarpon's best efforts, we finally got it along side for several pictures and a release. Going 3 for 4 was a perfect way to end the evening and end the vacation before heading home to deal with major snow fall and lots of shoveling.

Captain Dave Kostyo

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Im hearin' ya Capt, Thanks alot for the Great report, keep 'em comming:icon_rambo:

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