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Discussion Starter #1
Because the "Pass Time" steering was not working properly yet I was invited by my friend Jeff, who has a mako 230 cuddy, to go grouper and AJ fishing with him and his buddy. Well his buddy canceled so it was just him and me. We left out of destin pass at 8;30 am with no live bait to be found. Hit a local wreck to try for some rubys or rockfish and nothing. Not a nibble. Thinking that we didn't want to leave there yet as there was a small show, I tied on a blue/flash buterfly jig. It's amazing how those things are scientificly designed and engineered to extract eighteen dollars from your wallet! Dropped that to the bottom and danced it up and down no more than three feet and bam...first gag of the morning. New scale said 8lbs. Back down again and after a few bounces bam, nice almaco jack. Down for a third time and nothing. Danced it a few times and nothing. Jigged it to the top...nothing. Back to the bottom and danced it again and then did what I call a "takeaway retrieve"...no jigging just winding. You would thing I just threw a grapple hook onto the interstate.I got hit so hard that it whiplashed me. I'm using a penn slammer medium heavy(white) spinning rod and a penn 650ss with 65lb PP braid and I swear this thing jerked the slobber out of my mouth. Now its on. Jeff is fighting the wind and tide and 3'wavesand I am wondering if I just made a big mistake. After about a 45 second tug of war that I thought I was winning this thing just frickin' showed me exactly who was boss and took my $18 jig back home with him. Chinese amberjack...zing pow! 65# Power Pro???????

Left that spot because my feelings were hurt and went to a private spot with rocks, concrete, and some good verticle relief...and a good show.Same thing...no bites on bait rig or 2 hook mingo rig. No trigger bite...nothing. Whole squid, cut squid, nothing. sent down a nasty dead cig...bam red snappers everywhere. What a shame. Caught and released at least 8 to 10. Still seeing a steady large mark right on the bottom so I tie on another green/tiger jig and make it dance. Bam...almaco after almaco after almaco, and a few short AJ's.......for a half hour at least. Nuff of that. Sent down some cut bait and started to pull up one short red grouper after another. At least 7 or 8 total and one nice keeper scamp and one pogy. Poor guy...he got put on the 85lb AJ rig and sent to the bottom for advertisement and then pulled up about half way.BAM again with the freight train hit! Whatever this is is making my gear look like ultrlight stuff and with a hammered down drag he takes me 60 ft back down to the bottom and wrecks me. We circled and tightened and released and tried all of the tricks to get this thing to come out but to no avail. We suspect a good quality AJ from the look of the fish finder and eventually he breaks/ or cutsme off.Dug around my box and found another large green/tiger jig and with what was left of my arms and shoulders sent it to the bottom on my spinning gear.I was almost afraid to start jigging it now. Did I mention that I am the only one fishing because we couldn't get the anchor to bite...not enough chain or rode and the wind and tide kept Jeff busy with the boat.4 short quick pulls with a very short pause and BAM BAM BAM again. Monster fish with alot of shoulder and head shake. I swear my rod tip touched the butt. What can I say...he beat me again.

Fishing and commeraderie was great fun today and It felt good to get back out in the GOM. Turned out to be a very beautiful day.I sincerely thanked/ and then dog cussedmy friend Jeff for letting me fish today as I am usually handleing the boat for everyone else.

Came home with 1 nice gag, 4 nice almaco's, 1 21" scamp. I still cant feel my arms. Next time I am bringing my 6/0 100lb rig and we will dance again my friend. Thanks for the pulls.
 

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David it was good you and your buddy was able to get out. That's what we call Mr James down there. Hundred pound braid, two hundred pound leader,14/0 circle hook forty pounds of drag and hold on something going to give. Gene
 

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sounds like you had a good time anyway. those big boys will be there next time. to bad about the expensive jigs though. there sure is a lot of money on that bottom that them big fish are collecting for their retirement.
 

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I agree with Purple Haze. When we hit our "honey holes" we break out our bigger gear. We have two dedicated AJ rigs spooled with 100lb braid and at least 150-200lb leader. It only makes sense and will save you alot of tackle. Whenever I mark AJ evryone comes up and has a turn on the larger stuff. This has paid off for us more time thanI can count. Here's a good one from last season.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks team Recess and Adrenaline for the comments. It has made me realize that there is a time for light tackle sportsmanship and then there is a time for our new buddy "James". It's on now!!! Give me one good day and I will try and post up a few good aj's and if it is soon enough maybe a nice gag!

Nice AJ's Adrenaline...thats what I'm talkin about. Are those biguns tasty?
 

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Pass Time (1/16/2010)Thanks team Recess and Adrenaline for the comments. It has made me realize that there is a time for light tackle sportsmanship and then there is a time for our new buddy "James". It's on now!!! Give me one good day and I will try and post up a few good aj's and if it is soon enough maybe a nice gag!

Nice AJ's Adrenaline...thats what I'm talkin about. Are those biguns tasty?
They're all tasty. No worms in these heavy weights! Even if you do catch a larger fish that has a few parasites, just cut them out, there will be more than enough meat left. I have a quiet a few spots out there that hold these larger jacks ( my buddy caught one over 100lbs on the same spot)you just have to bewilling to take the longer tripsthat it takes to get em. You sound like you have found a pretty sweet spot. Take our advice and beef up next time you head that way and I promise you'll have some blood on the deck. Just make sure the reel you use can handle the heavier line and drag pressures or you will be out more $$$$$. Alwayshappy to help. Post pics next time you try.
 

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Lyin Too (1/18/2010)What gear do you recommend?
You can go with some of the more expesive reels and they are lighter weight but a good ol' 9/0 is a great reel for big jacks. Put it on a star rod or an oldschool solid glass rod hammer the drag and hang on
 
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