July Moon, North Drop USVI

July 17 – Red Hook is really starting to fill up for this moon. It’s a little early in the cycle for everyone to be fishing today, only a dozen or so boats going. The trade winds are blowing today at a brisk 20 knots in the morning and even stronger by mid day. I rode along with Bob on the new Paul Spencer boat Southpaw today and he went one for one. This bite started on a short rigger teaser and within moments this fish has taken a look or a bite of most everything in the spread. No jumps and a quick battle had me hoping for some excitement near the boat. Careful for what you wish for. I did get a few shots of a nice clean fish in the air filling the frame at the end of the leader.
And then things changed quickly as I felt the need to dive for the deck to avoid the inbound missile. Luckily the roll of the boat had the fish impacting the hull side just inches below the covering board and bouncing off into the water. A check of my camera had this image below as the last frame captured before I bailed…

July 18 – Riding aboard the 72′ Merritt boat Tyson’s Pride today. More heavy rain and strong trade winds today. Our first bite comes on a short rigger teaser and comes strong and fast to the boat. The pitch goes out but never even gets a sniff. Our second morning bite also starts on a teaser and this fish eats the pitch just right. Ten minutes into the battle the line goes slack. Turns out to be a fluke accident with the circle hook breaking just below the barb. A long afternoon with no more sightings. Rain and lightning all evening long.

July 19 – From the eye of the storm … dawns first light arrives in the form of an amazing electrical storm over the East End of St. Thomas. While sitting on the boat having some coffee, I could see several power line transformers arcing while the power surged and flickered in the residential hills surrounding Red Hook Bay. Not good. The National Hurricane Center reports a 30% chance of the overhead patch of weather forming into something tropical. By late afternoon, this prediction would be increased to 60%. I decide to take a lay day today and stay on island. While visiting Neptune Tackle, I end up running into an old friend Tyler. He is now Captain of one of the Double Header skiffs that specialize in this areas inshore fishing and also are masters of targeting the Yellowfin bite out off the edge. It doesn’t take long before he puts together a plan to dash out between squalls and show me some Kingfish. Like the Blue Marlin a few miles offshore, the kings remain elusive even in an area where they were biting just yesterday. I wasn’t for a lack of talent or effort however. They did catch a few fish and even broke a new high tech jigging rod while applying some heat on heavy braided line.


July 20 – Aboard the Paul Mann boat Prime Time today. This is day one of Fin Gaddy’s charter, owner of the newest Paul Mann boat named Qualifier. Big improvement in the weather today, some sunlight and just a little rain. First encounter is a teaser bite that doesn’t play along. Next is a long rigger lure bite, down and tight. Bent butt outfit in the chair for this one. Fin is a tackle enthusiast and this outfit is a favorite for 80lb line. A longer than average blank, cut to stay firm with an old school cork grip mounted with a light weight composite reel. A perfect tool for this job.

This fish pulls off on the leader without showing herself much. The next teaser bite eats the pitch and the 50lb bait. This short lever rod is also equipped with a mini bent butt for stand up leverage. This fish does a few hops on the leader for the camera. A third teaser bite again eats the 50lb pitch and it’s first series of jumps is across the spread with an interesting background. The Hatteras boat Amirita is coming up the drop right behind us and gets a nice show of the action. Within one minute on the line the circle hook pulls and we are done for the day. End up 2 of 3 bites, and see two others.

3 Responses to “

July Moon, North Drop USVI

  1. Mark Hume says:

    Very Cool Scottie! Neat site. I’m not real up to speed on blogging yet, but can’t wait to look around your site. Thanks for the link, Mark

  2. Ross says:

    Just subscribed to your RSS feed. Just figuring out this technology stuff… Hope to see you in St Thomas for the Boy Scout.


  3. Scott says:

    Hey Ross – thanks for taking a look around. I’m learning this stuff on the fly myself. I will be shooting the San Juan tournament first, then hopping over to St T to shoot the lay day and the last day of the Boy Scout. So I will see you there. SK

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