Friday, December 5, 2008

Holy Mackerel

I bet who ever coined the term "Holy Mackerel!" was fishing in Stuart, Florida during the winter. You see every winter spanish mackerel move into an area on our beaches that is known as Peck's Lake, or just simply the mackerel hole. I have been told that this is the largest concentration of spanish mackerel in the country, and since I have been fishing the hole for over 20 years I personally would agree. Now this is no secret among locals, you will be fishing among hundreds of boats, some trolling (who knows why?), some throwing jigs, some flyfishing, and even plenty of commercial boats throwing cast nets on them. Yes, that is how many mackerel are there. It is not uncommon to catch over a hundred fish on flies or jigs in a single morning, and the commercial guys may pull in 1500lbs. a day on a good day. Now to some of you reading this it may not seem like fun being surrounded by boats catching mackerel, but anyone who has done it will disagree. This morning on my charter I fished with a good client of mine Ken Stockwell and 3 of his friends, all are from Michigan, we needed two boats so I asked my friend Capt. Scott Cormier to help me with the charter. I had Ken and his friend Kirk Squiers on my boat, now Ken has fished the mackerel hole with me in years past and as soon as he knew the ocean was calm today he knew he wanted to head down to the mackerel hole. We had one of those mornings, when I say we hooked them on every cast, I say it without exaggeration. When we were on top of the fish we hooked them on fly and jigs every cast! If you fly fish no matter what level caster you are you owe it to yourself to fish Peck's Lake at least once in your life. I am sorry I do not have any photos to post, but there is no way for me to take pictures while chartering for mackerel. I am too busy landing fish, rigging rods, and cleaning the boat, not to mention that there is no way I am touching my Nikon D300 with mackerel scales all over my hands. I will do my best to head out one day with a friend and just take pictures so you can see for yourself what the mackerel hole is all about. Thanks for reading,
John - fishing - photography

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