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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Run out of Wrightsville fishin trip with Hunter's Haven (Gery - pronounced like Gary) ;), Tadpole Jim, Rob Latta, Mahi Slayer Randall and good Friend Dennis Scott.



Where to Start?... well, the crew. I had a fantastic crew for not having alot of offshore experience. I was impressed with Gery, but more impressed with the positive attitudes of Rob and Jim (this was their first saltwater experience!). Scott and Randall have been out with me before.. so they know what to expect.

The crew did a fantastic job of not only "hanging in there" but boating fish!!! We had what I would say was my "upper limit" of weather and seas. Weather reports are a little deceiving as they're at best a "general" idea... what we found out was the weather man just just flat wrong! (imagine that....) We headed out for a day expecting 4-7's with a 15-20 knot wind, 30% chance of rain. Well, let's just say, when we cleared the inlet, we were heading towards the distant flashes of lightning of a storm in our general direction and the wind was a wee bit over 20 knots!! (look at the pick of Scott's jacket blown up like a balloon!!) Sea's.... well, let's just say if them were 4's.... I'm a tackle monkey's uncle! ;) We saw waves that I had estimated at over 8 1/2 ft as that's the height of my waterline to the top of my Ttop. I'd definately say seas in our general fishin area out past the WR4 and just inside the 40 mile mark were 8-10's with about a 25 knot wind and white caps. No foam blowin,, but the day was cloudy and pushed the upper limits of what would have been manageable.


Though not unsafe by my definition, I had to realize I had 3 folks that were truely green horns, so I wanted to make a positive offshore trip for them (Jim, Rob and Randall - but Randall's been out with me 2x's before so he had an idea.. but has never been in them kind of seas). My goal for this trip was for it to be positive, target fish that the guys wanted to catch, and most of all get up and meet with these guys and have a good time offshore. Thru the week I tried to prepare as best I could, had a gameplan and hoped for the best.



We made fantastic time driving down, got there early, no rush to launch, slow rolled out in the dark to the inlet, then plotted a course for the trip out.
Very cloudy for the day until mid afternoon pretty much. Thunder storms out to the east of us all morning, high winds and very bumpy seas in close, then some pretty nice/large swells the further we got into deeper water.

We first drop'd lines as the ride was just rough as we headed into the wind and into a head sea... if you were on the Titanic you'd a got wet... so instead of runnin bow high, we had hopes that we'd just troll while waiting for the weather to lay down a little in the afternoon. So we trolled a little earlier than planned and more closer in than we planned.
3 hours on the troll produced one fish that skied the bait close to the boat (Yozuri bonita - black/purple) Gery saw it, but we had no takers after that.



After 3 hours of the bob up and down thing.. we decided to run it on out as best as possible.. finally reaching the WR4 area,, there was a nice scattered weed patch. So we worked that for a while and trolled in that area for a while. Nothing produced... so had to keep on keepin on. Packed it up and headed to a area south of where I usually fish as the sea just wasnt me run where I wanted. I found a good interval and trough set that eased the ride for the guys a little and we made some good time and came up on a area where I knew would be a good chance. While powering down about a mile out, I noticed the sonar sig's coming back and said, Gery, take a look at that... whatchya think? He got a smile on his face and I told the guys get bottom rigs on and drop'm down. 8 sharks later..... was time to move, but the bottom structure there looked very promising - definately will pay a visit back in the future when I can throw the hook out. (yesterday was impossible to anchor and to be honest,, we'd of had a mess if I thru the anchor out - just wasnt worth the time and effort).

So as we came into that area a mile away.. scattered and clumped weed's and that lovely bottom structure that rose out of 90 ft of water up to about a peak of 75 ft of water.. so the drift was on!
once the guys drop'd the lines, bites were immediate. After alot of misses, fish finally got hooked and were coming into the boat! ;) Pink pogies, grey grunts, one heck of a red groupah Scott caught, and some really nice sized black bass! The guys worked that area hard and after I downloaded our GPS data/tracks, we drifted and covered an area in a mile radius with no less than 16 different drift tracks!! ( I know.. it sure didnt seem like it.. but I counted the gps tracks..)



Then, the bite just died. I woulda been happy to start trolling back in.. but Scott and Gery were ready to hit the bowel! (which was another 7.38 miles due NE of the drift position we were at)... I wasnt lookin forward to it as I had to look forward as the rest of the crew could stand backwards and not drink as much saltwater.... ha ha ha ha ha ha.. (it was... it was miserable) but hey, as long as they were willing to fish, I'd get them there.

We showed up at the first ledge of the bowel area on the south rim of it and some really nice blue water and weed lines, though scattered, clump'd enough to hold a mahi around... so out when the spinners with a hook and squid. Randall, Jim and I drop'd baits to the bottom and the other 3 guys floated out 2-4 free lined squids.
Jim set the action in motion when reelin up a pinfish, a mahi was all over that thing and Gery yelled "Mahi"... I told them throw them squid down right there at him and let some line out, I'd turned my back to get to the other side of the boat to get the big rods out of the way and next thing I knew, Gery had his first mahi on!!!! after that.. and 14 mahi later... the boat looked like we'd slaughter a pig on it.. ha ha ha ha... them boys had bailed mahi on the drift and the excitement level was high for sure. Gery, Jim, Randall, Rob, Scott and myself all boated mahi.. frenzied action for sure as we tried out best to keep one in the water till someone else hooked one.



Congrat's to Gery, Jim and Rob on their first ever Mahi's! great work guys.
Rob and Jim caught their first ever sharks
Jim caught his first and a nice sea bass
Congrat's to Dennis on one fine red groupah! (just what he was wanting to get)

Current, wind, waves made it difficult at best for bottom fishin
We caught nothing on the troll
We fished 3 different weedlines (one in green water and 2 in the blue water)
Released 8-12 sharks, still debateable as the count is fuzzy after 8
Everyone now know's what 8-10 ft seas looks like and can tell you what salt water tastes like!
and thru the whole day, we had only one cut off/break off.



These boys simply came to catch fish and did a great job! They truely made me look good on this one as I was border line on calling it early due to the weather.
That is definately the roughest anyone would want to fish and was borderline "hanging on". The only boat we saw the whole day was a sail boat about 5 miles out from the coast. Even coming back in we didnt see anyone else out until we cleared the last bouy coming back in the inlet.

So my hat's off to you guys! First and foremost, Great to meet y'all!!!! NCAngler has some really nice folks as members here and was a joy for me to fish with ya.
I'm relieved we finally got Gery his first mahi!! He was sizzlin like an isatope for sure! as was Jim and Rob. Jim and Rob,,, told y'all you'd sleep on the ride back to the house!!! :) And I feel they gained a better understanding of "this aint Jordan lake" ha ha ha ha.... I'll take any of you guys fishin.. a great crew that help out all the way until the last piece of gear was put away for the day. Much appreciated!

To end this, I've seen alot in fishin, but my first was watching two guys battle the same mahi. Scott and Gery had both hooked the same mahi. I mean the mahi had one of each hook in his gullet.. was kinda funny watchin how they were gonna work that one out... but in the end they came up with a equitable means.. Truely funny.
So... though it really wasnt the Topsail/NCAngler Half a fish story... it definatley was a "dividing" of a fish... ha ha ha ha...

Had a great time guys, thanx for everything, and dont worry,, I'm sure you'll recover from gettin beat up after bein in 8 ft seas! :)
I'm truely sorry I didnt take more pictures,, but... I think y'all understand why the camera wasn't out that much!!! ;)
 

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Now that's what I call play by play action Dave. On behalf of the crew let me say it was a great pleasure fishing with you and having you as captain of our great vessel. I appreciate all the preparation you put into making this trip possible for us. And to all the other guys, I enjoyed fishing with and meeting all of you. As much as I enjoyed catching my first Mahi I have to say it meant more to me to see Jim catch his first after all he went through on this trip. He truely deserved his fish. It was the roughest day of fishing I've ever experienced but with a great boat and captain I never felt unsafe. I knew that team would get us home safe. Thanks again Dave!
Gery
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
truth be told Mike, the majority of the fish were caught at a place only Gery and myself can talk about! ;) What ya say Gery, marked about 5 good structure spots... :D

Only the mahi came from the bowel!

I know Jim sure got the ab muscle work out by Size 9.... I'm almost certain he slept in this morning... :);) And it's alright Jim,, I've been there before as have many folks... sure wasnt Jordan lake was it! ....

here's a couple other pix:



 

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It was def. a washing machine haha. Dave, brother I had a blast and hope to do it again! When we hit that one hole the fish were coming out of the wood works haha. I'd really like to get out there into some grouper I love them. It was a blast to see the mahi jump.










 

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and even though neither of these were my fish. I'll throw it up anyways.
If Im able to go out again ill bring a nice water proof camera and keep tabs on all the goings on.
 

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I see ya broke out your DriDuks, Dave... How'd the cheap foulies work for ya in rough conditions?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
For the conditions,, I think something a little better would of been a better choice, but for spray and wind blocking... the best $14 I ever spent. I didnt bother with the pants.. So I'm sure with the pants and in rain or wind they'd be fine.
 

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Man I was having a bad hair day:( Can't someone doctor up these pictures and put a hat on my head:rolleyes: I had the rainhood on most of the time except when we stopped to fish so didn't bother with the hat but maybe it gives everyone a good idea what a head of dried salt look like, yikes!!!! It was fun and like you said Dave, we got new structure to return to.
Gery
 

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Well it wasn't an Alaskan crab expedition but I'm sure 3 guys now have an idea what the term real snotty means. Actually when the Camera was out it looks like the weather might have served to make the trip more memorable than a similar catch on a bluebird day. Don't worry Tadpole I've chummed on a couple of occasions my self. It takes you a little while the first time you get green around the gills but you eventually realize that it won't stop you from doing anything if you don't let it. Good pictures Dave and Good job on hanging in there and accomplishing the mission. You got a good nose!
 

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Gery it took me 2 baths to get all the salt off.:) and talk about bad hair day, who posted that picture of that old fat man? Oops thats me in that picture

Sure was fun though wasn't it?

Jim
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Man I was having a bad hair day:( Can't someone doctor up these pictures and put a hat on my head:rolleyes: I had the rainhood on most of the time except when we stopped to fish so didn't bother with the hat but maybe it gives everyone a good idea what a head of dried salt look like, yikes!!!! It was fun and like you said Dave, we got new structure to return to.
Gery
Gery, you mean that wasnt a wig??? :p:D

got that right brother man! I have a funny feelin we'll back it back to spot "X".... ;) (shhhh.. dont talk about it too loud!) :eek:;)
 

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Great trip! Thanks for sharing everything guys!

As I said before, Dave is a gentleman and a scholor...............fish'n scholor that is!
 
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Dave,
I hope you don't mind me getting a little spiritual. Do you remember when we were at the first stop and didn't catch any fish? I started telling you the story about Peter and Jesus and then I told you " thus saith the Lord, cast your lines over there", (meaning not where we were), we picked up and moved to the new spot ( which was our there) and filled the cooler with fish. I say that because I just listened to that same message on TBN just a few minutes ago of Jesus telling Peter to move his boat out to the deep and let down his net after a whole day of fishing and catching nothing! When Peter obeyed because of the Word of Jesus he filled his boat with fish and called the other boat which came and filled his with fish also. I didn't realize it at the time but I spoke the word of the Lord,(quoted scripture) although in a joking way, and you made the call to pick up and move and we filled the cooler with fish. I tell you there is something powerful about speaking the Word even when it is for pleasure! Just thought I'd share that as I knew you would remember.
Gery
 

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I remember dave taling about his paw and leaving a spot open for him.
and as gery was saying, jim was saying something along those lines...in in the same way but he said yoiu know i wonder what they would have said if I stood up and said...."Hey that looks like a good spot over there." haha


You know also I was thinking it was that rough out there we could hardly stand up..and 50 miles out I had to relive my self. Image all that bumping around and me trying to play the balancing act on a 5 gallon bucket. I love it and hey IM not sore today...ready to go out again
 
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