THIS IS A FISHING EXPERIENCE THAT CAN MAKE YOU A FISHERMAN THAT CATCHES FISH WHEN NO ONE ELSE CAN.
MUCH TO MY SURPRISE THIS IS AN OPPORTUNITY TO CATCH GREAT EATING FISH JUST A FEW MILES OFF THE BEACH FROM PALM BEACH ALL THE WAY TO KEY WEST.
THE SPECIES OF FISH VARY . MOST OF THEM ARE NOT EVEN KNOWN TO THE AVERAGE FISHERMAN.
One day a very good friend and client of mine invited me to fish with him on his 27ft. Mako. He had just installed a 12volt system for his newly purchased Electric Rod and Reel System and decided to bring it with us on our offshore adventure. Our trip started by launching the boat at Crandon Park Marina on the road to Key Biscayne. Naturally we were going to troll for Dolphin, Wahoo or whatever the Ocean would provide us. After four hours of trolling out to 15 miles on a southeast heading we experience not one Bite. An impromptu meeting of two captains and the crew a decision was made to return in towards shore to set up for Deep Dropping for bottom fish with the new Electric reel system.
We reached the 700 ft. depth stopped the engines and set up the new Krystal Rod and Reel. We rigged it with a number 8 circle hook chicken rig attached to 200lb Flourocarbon leaders approximately 18 inches allowing the four hooks to spread out. The 130lb. test Braided line is what this equipment was rigged with. The sash weight weighed 10lbs. We baited each hook with whole squid. At the top of the rig we used 300lb test swivels with a four color light attached.
Time to go fishing. I dropped the baited rig into the 700 feet depth and just a minute or two later it hit bottom. As we drifted towards shore I controlled the weight trying to keep the rig as close to the bottom by raising and lowering as needed. Gus saw our first bite by the rod tip going down. He raised the fish with the electric power . We really had no idea what was fighting as Gus brought it up. A beautiful 10lb Golden Tile Fish was a Trophy for all of us since it was caught with in just a few miles off the Miami shoreline. The Florida regulations allow only one fish per angler. After the third fish hit the box we decided to go out to 1000 feet of water . The Black Rose fish which weighs one to two lbs become our targeted species. The chicken rig was changed to a ten hook rig with #3 circle hooks attached. Since the fish we were after are smaller and the depth was deeper it made sense to try to catch as many fish on one drop as it took much longer to reach the fish and bring them up once we felt the bite. The hooks are smaller so we baited pieces of Squid making the meal easy to consume by the Rosies.
This time Pedro our third member of the experimental Deep Drop team was given the honor of manning the Krystal. First one bite then two bites then three bites and up started the electric reel. Pedro, Gus and I waited anxiously to see what was at the bottom of our rig. What seemed like a lifetime bringing up these fighting fish all of us started screaming when we saw Three Rosies all about 2lbs hitting the deck. The regulations allow an unlimited catch. Immediately we rebaited and dropped the rig , this time we were already in 900 feet of water. Again we brought up three more Rosies.
If you would like to experience what I did this past year by trying Deep Dropping but you do not have access to Electric equipment I have a suggestion. Find your largest offshore rig. A 5/0 or larger spool it with 80 to 130 lb Braided line. Prepare your Deep drop rig by purchasing it already made from Bass Pro Shop. Fish Manually yes I know it is not easy bringing fish up from the 500 to 1000 feet depths but think of not travelling for miles with a hope and a prayer trolling when the fish can be as close as three miles offshore.