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The picture says it all fishing offshore Tampa

Saturday, June 02, 2012

The picture says it all fishing offshore Tampa

Fishing offshore St.Pete Beach has lots to offer, just ask Dan Budde about it. Dan and his family come to St.Pete Beach every year for some relaxation, which always includes a fishing charter with the Jawbreaker crew...and is seldom relaxing. You see, Dan always wants to catch Grouper, and every year we catch Grouper all day long and leave Dan with a sore back. The following day probably leaves the poor guy unable to do anything but relax. And as I type this, I am sure Dan is cussing me as he rises from bed with a sore back like he has never felt before....sorry Dan, DJ wanted Big Grouper, you know, “like something over 200 pounds”.

We decided to mix it up a bit this year and take the guys out for a live bait trolling session. Again, the big Bonitos did not disappoint and I would gamble that this is one of the hardest fighting fish, for it's size, in the Gulf. The Buddes were digging it, and got really excited when we started using these 10-15 pound footballs for bait, you know, for DJ's 'special' request.

Turns out that there are lots of other big fans of the Bonito, and the first fish to take a swipe at one was about 500 pounds! Dan, DJ and Marco took turns fighting the massive beast for about 30 minutes and almost had it boatside before the giant cicle hook mysteriously popped out. Wow, we had the biggest Goliath Grouper I have ever seen within 15 feet of the boat, and just like that...it was gone. Damn the pain of losing a really big fish, but hey, we did get a good look at it and at least knew what we were up against the next time-and the 'next time' started right then. We fired down another bloody chunk of Bonito, drifted and waited a bit....and Bam!...Fish On!!...The boys were at it again, and it took all three of them, taking turns until they had another huge Goliath boat side...this one weighed in at an estimated 300 pounds plus. Check out my buddy, Dan Budde, with his biggest Grouper ever. (check photo gallery for more pics)

To top off another great trip, Marco fought the last 40-pound Amberjack of the season to the fish box, and 'the closer' fooled a 20-pound Barracuda to the boat-before being released to fight another day. Thanks again to Dan, DJ and Marco for another great time, and if your backs hurt today boys....revel in it-and think about the glory of winning! Happy fishing, Capt.Dan

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