Everyone likes to chase big fish and there is no place better to target big fish then offshore. Stuart is well known for it's offshore fishery and July is the perfect month for me to take advantage of calm sea conditions and chase some pelagic species with a fly rod. My method of choice is live chumming, it's truly an amazing sight when you are 6 miles or more offshore seemingly in the middle of no where and a handful of live pilchards brings the ocean to life. The first to arrive are usually the bonito which is a local term used for little tunny or for those of you in the northeast false albacore. These guys typically show up in bunches and will put a big grin on any fly fisherman's face. If one is lucky they may get shots at dolphin, sailfish, blackfin tuna, cobia, kingfish. These are all actually pretty common to show up in the chum but, if someone is really lucky they may even get a shot at a wahoo. I apparently am not lucky enough yet for the wahoo but I know it has been done. Many of you that have been reading my reports for years know that I have a client that I call the "Midas man", Rob Alpers has the ultimate positive attitude and that usually is rewarded with memorable catches. I fished with Rob and some of his friends for a few days last week and day one was full of permit and mostly all big ones, one was over 30 and another was 25 pounds. Anyway, Rob made the comment that someday he wants to try and target dolphin on fly with me and all I said was, "It may happen tomorrow?" Sure enough we loaded up on live chum and at the first spot on Rob's second cast he hooked up. I fully expected a bonito until a dolphin came flying out of the water. My only thought was this guy is golden. On a side note, I am hosting a trip to Turneffe Flats lodge in Belize in November and Rob is coming along on the trip, I consider it trip insurance.
This past week yielded 3 sailfish, all be they were not on fly all three came up to the boat eating the chum and easily could have been targeted on fly if one had the patience, and the will not to throw a live pilchard at them.
This is what happens to your thumb if you don't get your hand out of the way when a tunny makes a blazing run.
Here is a shot of my buddy Mike Holliday releasing a permit. We fished a group charter with the owners and representatives of Plano Tackle last week. I fished with one of the owners and his teenage kids, we caught sailfish, tunnies and permit.
Here is a shot of Ernie DeBlasi with a tunny. Ernie is the executive chef at Caffe' Luna Rosa in Delray Beach, stop in and tell him you saw his picture on my blog.