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Hello all, My name is Joel and I live in Michigan.Hope it is starting to warm up for you down there. We are hardwater fishing now through March. I have never fished the ocean but have a family and friends vacation planned from June 26 - July 3rd. We will be staying in a beautiful house on the pass on Little Lagoon in Alabama. I plan on bringing a 217 Stratos and my friend may bring a 23 Mako Center console.Is it worth pulling the boats 1000 miles? We would like to target the Reds as well as trout and anything else that may be available at the time. I am looking for any help I can get as far as tackle, lures, bait locations etc. I am also involved in guiding for Salmon and trout on Lake Michigan and would be more than happy to trade a trip or information in returnfor help. I will continue to monitor this website for information and am taking notes. I think our Salmon gear should suffice for most of the near shore stuff and the heavier bass tackle for the inshore stuff. If I am wrong let me know. Is there much in the way of a trolling bitein June/July. How about dolphin? Wahoo? Cuda? Are they catchable that time of year? Looking forward to talking with some of you as I see the information sharing on this siteis commendable. Thanks in advance for any info and sorry for all the questions.

Thanks

Joel aka MI 'eyecatcher
 

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1000 miles is a long way to pull a boat you may not even be able to use if it is over2' seas. Is your trailer galvanized or aluminum? If your boats have never been in saltwater and 99% of your fishing is fresh I would not run them in salt for just a few days.With themoney you save in gas you can catch some walk on charters or split gas with some members and be sure to catch some offshore fish. The lagoon is small and the best place to fish it is at the pass where you will be staying. You can wade fish the pass and fish from the beach very easily. PM a week or two before you come. I fish every almost every weekend during snapper season and usually have room on my 26' CC.
 

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The good news is that even if the seas don't cooperate there will be plenty of good inshore fishing in June. The lagoon in particular will offer good trout fishing night and day along with soem flounder, reds and a few other things mixed in.To get wahoo and dolphin reliably you will be running at least 25 miles from there although chicken dolphin can commonly be found on floatign debris closer to shore. The king mackeral bite will be in full swing closer in on the beaches and nearshore wrecks and if you want to target something more sporting, soak some live baits just outside the sandbar in July for shots at tarpon in the 80-130lb class with some fish even bigger.
 

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i would leave the boat, as was said above it would cost you as much in gas and wear as it would to hop on with a guide for a couple days. you could also rent a kayak or something while down (if you don't already have one). a guy caught a pretty big tarpon right outside the pass on a yak this past year. the yaks are great to wade fish with too. make sure you have a rope and tie it around your waist, it would suck to have to swim to it.
 

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jeubank3 (1/20/2010) a guy caught a pretty big tarpon right outside the pass on a yak this past year
That was me. They are a reliable target around late June-Early August
 

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If your friend brings the Mako, you really won't need the stratos much. If you have an electric trolling motor on the Stratos and really want to fish lights at night for speck thenit would matter. There are very few inshore places that you will need the shallow water reach that time of year and the bass boat is not really suited for the Gulf.There are folks who fish out there in bass boats on calm days, and we have fished areas within a few miles of Perdido Pass and Mobile Point in my friend's tunnel hull bay boat, but you need a <U>CALM</U> day. Be advised that the Gulf can kick up fast in a thunderstorm.

You can go here:

http://www.ndbc.noaa.gov/station_history.php?station=42012

for historical data on the buoy 12 miles offshore (wind, waves, etc) but it has not been there long to have much history or go to buoy 42040 for more history 60 miles offshore (42040 is no longer in place but the history is available). That will give you an idea of the range of weather at that time. Most of the time in June the "significant" waves at 42040 are below 2' and quite fishable for the Mako, but if we get in a windy cycle it can blow for days.

Personally, if your friend does not mind the saltwater, I would definitely bring the Mako. You could split the cost on the extra gas. There is all kinds of fishing you can do that time of year. You need to know that Little Lagoon Pass is not passable for the Mako. You'll have to trailer if you want to fish anything but the Lagoon.

As far as tackle, any reelwith a good strong drag that will hold 200 yards or more of 20 lb mono will handle most (not all) of what youmight catch. If your rods are the 9 foot slow action things I've seen for salmon, they won't be too easy to work from a boat with a hot fish. 5-1/2 to 6 footers with a strong backbone are best in a boat if you are going for king, reds, etc..
 
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