It’s been a real tough winter everything from snow, rain, ice, wind and unbelievable cold weather, it was nearly 50 below with the wind chill. But there will be a turnaround in a few weeks let’s hope. One good thing I heard the ice fishing has been better than ever and will go into March I believe it was real thick this year.
Andy has been tearing them up at a number of local strip mines and has plenty of fish for a fish fry. Nothing like cold water bluegills, bass and crappies fried in the grease. I love eating fish and I like them all.
We have been enjoying the weather here in Port Charlotte Florida with an average high near 80 nearly every day. The coldest it has gotten at night and early morning is 46 but a quick recovery to the high 60’s.
I was able to go on a deep water fishing charter 45 miles out into the Gulf. The youngest Licensed Captain in the country. Tyler DeGraff of North Port Florida has been fishing since he was in diapers. This young man is 18 years old and knows the fishing game here in South West Florida like no other Captain. Offshore fishing out of Venice, Englewood & Boca Grande.
We hit a day with only 2 foot waves and beautiful sunny 80 degree temperatures. The ride out was a bit long but to get to where the fish are you have to go far. It took an hour and a half at 32 MPH we arrived at our destination. We were at 100 feet and marking fish, the hunt was on. The bait and rig are simple a heavy weight on the bottom and a snelled hook about a foot up. Using frozen sardines and cut bait from a past trip we were in the game.
Fishing a 100 feet down on a rocky bottom we had bites right away. I hooked into one big fish, bigger than anything I have caught in years. It was a large Grouper weighing close to 20 pounds. There were so many fish trying to get our baits it was a job rebaiting our hooks.
We caught grouper, snappers, yellow tail and a dozen of other fish. I have never heard of many of them but any fish on a hook is ok with me. It was a blast and when we finished we had nearly limits of the fish we were allowed to catch. A number of fish are not allowed in your catch for strict rules on length and some like red snapper were totally off limits. Although we caught a number of large Reds we let them all go. Some of these reds were very big weighing as much as 10 to 15 pounds. There is a season in the summer but not when we were there.
After a great time on the water we headed back. But after the fun of catching those big fish the ride seemed short. Tyler and first mate Andy fileted our fish and we were done. A couple nights later everyone came over; we fried and broiled our fish at home and had a great feed.
To contact Tyler call 941- 544-4089. This young Captain is one of the most passionate fishermen I have ever met. He specializes in Tarpon, Sharks, Goliath Grouper and all off shore species. Full or half days available and he advertises guaranteed to catch fish. You can see him on Facebook on his personal page: Tyler DeGraff or Always and Forever Charters. If you or anyone you know wants to catch a lot of fish when in South West Florida Tyler is your man. You won’t be disappointed believe me I wasn’t.
Just a little info on coming to SW Florida. If you like warm weather there is no other place in the US that offers all the things we sportsman love. You can fish here every day and won’t freeze your tail off. But the biggest deal is the air fare. Allegiant air flies you right into Punta Gorda just 20 minutes from our front door step. We come down in the summer too for a week or so. If you look on the web for Allegiant air you can get one way tickets for 60 dollars sometimes. There are a lot of resorts and motels that have great rates. So for a quick getaway and not holding you up at the bank it’s a great deal. We have had friends from Illinois come down and stay so we have had the best of both worlds. If you need more specific information call me and I’ll give you some pointers.
We will be here in Florida for the next couple of months enjoying the wonderful weather. We just love waking up listening to birds and drinking coffee on the Lanai. I just wish I would have pulled this off a long time ago. But we all need to spend our time working and preparing for this later in life experience.
Being 65 and in relatively good health it still would have been more fun when I was younger. But if you are thinking about getting a place here do it now. There are some lots out in the country you can get for about $5000. People are coming here in droves; in fact they are building over 60 houses in a 4 mile radius. It’s time to plan and for that price it is a deal. I know a great realtor and she can help you find that perfect spot. Nina Whitman, 317-987-4115. Tell her Harry sent you.
If you would like to watch our TV show with Tyler you can go to youtube.com/asomagazine
Keep your wet and powder dry – Harry