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Took advantage of what looked like a really good weather window on Wednesday, January 5th to make a run offshore out of Pensacola Pass to do some Mingo and Scamp bottom fishing.

Had about 20 pinfish from the dock and stopped at the Mass buoy as the sun came up to load up on cigs. Cig bite was slow to start but picked up to where we were catching 3 to 4 at a time. Always a good feeling when you look in the live well and can’t see the bottom! Also had some frozen bay squid and bobo in the cooler.

Put the trolling motor away, fired up the big motors, set the autopilot, and kicked back for an hour run to our first stop. As usual, the wind and seas were stronger / rougher than forecast but still manageable.

A new year, so why not try a new strategy? Decided to make this a prospecting trip by only fishing new spots and fishing deeper to hopefully avoid sharks and smaller fish.

First stop I went down with a cig and my buddy went down with squid. As soon as we hit bottom and tightened the lines we had fish on. I pulled up a 20” scamp and he had a 2 1/2 lb Mingo. Game on - good way to start!

Over the course of the day we hit about a dozen different spots with some having a good bite and others being duds.

At 2:15, it was time to head to the house so pulled in the lines and as I started to reel up I had a bite and brought in our last Scamp of the day. Good way to end the trip.

Ended up with a limit of very nice Mingo, 7 scamp, and 3 Almaco. I felt like we should’ve gotten a limit of Scamp as well but missed way too many bites. Would have a fish on for a few cranks and then lose it. Need to do better than this.

Also caught and threw back some big snapper and a 34” AJ. Only lost a couple of fish to sharks and when they showed up we made a move. No action on the fly line or with jigs on the bottom.

The ride in was almost flat calm and only saw one other boat on the water after we left the Mass buoy.

Proved up some new spots, had a box of nice fish, and paid very little to the
Food Cuisine Dish Fish Seafood

sharks, so will probably do something similar on the next trip. Already looking forward to the next weather window!
 

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awesome catch. good report.
jack
 

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First drop was about 35 miles out and worked our way deeper from there. Used to fish The Edge and other shallower ridges but way too many shark and too few Mingo and Scamp of any decent size these days.
I agree with you on the edge......... not getting many decent sized ones there either. It appears that it has been overfished.
 

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i agree, ed. you don't have to look at the gps anymore to know where the edge is. just look for the line of boats from the ne to the sw.
jack
 

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MILF - Man I Love Fishing
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I was out the day before, just needed to run the boat and check my electronics.

I couldn't find a bottom bit with jigs either.

Great report!
 
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