OFFSHORE- The last few weeks had the feeling of late spring/early summer, but it looks like we get at least one more little shot of south Florida "winter" this weekend. A large cool/cold front will push through late Friday/early Saturday and will bring with it breezy conditions. Should produce some good sail fishing for those willing to go in less than ideal conditions. Look for the sailfish to be anywhere from 100-300' of water out of both Palm Beach and Jupiter Inlet. Mixed in with the sails should be some dolphin, including some some good size ones. This week was a little slower on the dolphin, but those putting in the time were able to find a few in 200-400' of water. Springtime species are around; with some cobia, kingfish, and blacken tuna all being caught this week in 100-200' of water. South tide and green water later this week had the snapper fishing a little off. Persistent bottom fishermen did catch some yellowtail, mangrove, and mutton snapper. As soon as good north current and clean water sets back in look for the snapper fishing to really fire up. Capt. Eric and I are working on a new snapper video as we roll into the spring/summer snapper season. If your interested in learning more about bottom fishing(especially Palm Beach County stye snapper fishing) it will hopefully help you put a few more snapper in the boat.
INSHORE- Snook fishing has been good this week both during the day and at night. Look for the snook to be eating mullet along seawalls and around docks during the day, and feeding around bridges and dock lights at night. Around bridges a flair hawk or swim bait is a good choice for the snook; and small jigs, shrimp, and even flies are great choices around dock lights. Outgoing tide is your best bet, but if the water remains a bit cloudy they will bite on incoming tide as well. MacArthur State Park is still holding some fish for those getting out and wading or fishing in the kayak. The footbridge has some nice sheepshead and a few drum hanging around the pilings, usually willing to eat a live shrimp. The flats are still holding a handful of trout, and even a stray redfish or two. Could be a good weekend for the spillways depending on how much rain the cold front brings.
SURF/PIER- Pompano fishing remained very good this week. Early morning and late afternoon remain the best time for the pompano. No real hotspot to speak of, as the pomps have been caught up and down the line in fair numbers. On the beach the best bait remains a split between sand fleas and clams. The Juno Beach Pier has been catching a fair number of pompano as well, with the afternoon bite on Doc's Goofy Jigs being very good the last few days. Croaker and whiting are still being caught in the first trough on small pieces of cut shrimp. A few rumors of some tarpon cruising the beach, as well as some bruiser schools of jacks. The Pier is already holding a fair number of snook , with cut sardines being the bait of choice for the snook right now.
Good Luck This Weekend Everyone!
Thanks For Reading,
FREIGHT TRAIN FISHING REPORT- It was a busy week, and I was lucky enough to get out quite a few times. We were lucky enough to score a ere ally nice blackfin tuna early in the week. Caught on a blue runner on the deep side of the 120' ledge. Been catching some kingfish and snapper as well this week. Some really nice yellowtail snapper late in the afternoon. Late afternoon/evening trips are a great way to go as we creep towards summertime conditions. Plenty of big sharks around to pull on if your looking to catch something REALLY BIG! This weekend may be a little rough, so I expect that I will have a snook report or two for you next week.
OFFSHORE- Nice looking weather forecast for the upcoming weekend and good fishing during the week has everybody ready for the weekend! The dolphin bite remains good for those covering some ground by trolling ballyhoo, bonita strips, and squid. The dolphin are swimming in as shallow as a 100’, and also being caught out past 500’; so don’t be afraid to really vary your depth while trying to hunt the mahi-mahi down. A few nice blackfin tuna have been caught in 150-250’ out of both Jupiter and Palm Beach Inlets, as have some nice wahoo. Keep at least one bait down deep while trolling for dolphin and blackfin tuna this time of year to pick up a wahoo in the same areas. In closer to the 120’ ledge from Palm Beach to Jupiter Inlet the usual springtime species are showing up. Cobia fishing remains good, with a few cobias being caught around wrecks and off the bottom; and other cobes being picked off the bull sharks. Kingfish are scattered off Jupiter Inlet in 80-100’ of water. Best bite for the kings is early in the morning or late in the afternoon. Love or hate them the bonita are starting to show up as well. Snapper fishing continues to improve; with good reports of mangrove, yellowtail, and mutton snappers all coming in.
INSHORE- Snook fishing has been good this week, with some fish being caught both during the day and at night. Look for the snook to be keyed in on spring time mullet along seawalls and under boat docks in the Loxahatchee River during the day. In the dark look for them to be feeding on the outgoing tide around area bridges. This is a great time of year to be pitching a flair hawk jig or big swimbait to pick up a slot size fish as the warmer weather has them a little more aggressive. The flats around Munyon Island are producing some nice catches of mangrove snapper, sheepshead, and a few black drum using live shrimp for bait. A small scattering of redfish have been trickling through Jupiter Inlet over the past few weeks.
SURF/PIER- Pompano fishing has been the main game in town as far as surf fishing goes this week. The best pompano bite has been very early morning and late in the afternoon. Hot baits for the pomps remain sandfleas, clams, and fishbites. Some big schools of jacks are cruising along the beach early in the morning, and spinner sharks are still down towards Palm Beach Inlet for those looking for something big to pull on. A few snook are showing up around the Juno Beach Pier. A chunk of sardine is a good bait choice to entice a bite out of the snook. Croaker are still biting good in the first trough on small pieces of fresh shrimp.
Shop Update- We will have FRESH Ballyhoo for the weekend! New Daiwa Spinning Reels in stock. Lots of great custom built rods in the shop right now as well. Come by and check it all out!
Offshore- The seas look like they might lay down a little by the end of the weekend but expect a little bit of a chop. The dolphin bite was pretty good to start the week but as the week wore on the dolphin became more scattered. There are still some gaffer size dolphin around but you may need to spend a little more time on the water for a successful day. Trolling ballyhoo or bonita strips is a great way to cover more ground and increase your odds, make sure to put a blue and white skirt and a pink and white skirt in front of a couple of your baits to see if they are keyed in on a specific color for that day. You will find the dolphin anywhere from 100'-600' look for a current edge and spend a little more time in fishy looking areas. Most of the dolphin caught this week were around 200'. We should start seeing cobia trickle in around the ledges, frozen sardines, ballyhoo, squid, or a jig bounced along the bottom will get the job done.
Inshore- Plenty of rod bending action inshore ladyfish and jacks will make up the majority of the catches however don't be surprised to see a few pompano mixed with the ladyfish and jacks. Live shrimp under a popping cork or on a jighead will be the ticket for these fish. For the folks that want to use lures bounce a 1/4-3/8 oz goofy jig or D.O.A. shrimp along the bottom. For those of you looking to catch snook, fishing at night around docklights and bridges will produce the most and best bites. Most of the snook will be undersize, fish larger baits around the bridges for a better chance at bringing one home for dinner. Slot size is 28''-32''. If you have any questions on which lures will work best for snook swing by the shop and I'll be happy to point you in the right direction.
Surf/Pier- Shark fishing along the beach remains strong. Any type of fresh bait rigged with an 8/0 and up circle hook with a wire or cable lead and 10' of 150lb shock leader will get the job done. Don't bring a gun to a knife fight, make sure your tackle is equipped to handle shark fishing. Sharks do have teeth and will bite you if you play around with them trying to get the hook out. Cut the line right above lead and get the shark back in the water as quick as possible.
Thanks for reading,
Capt Eric Gates
(561)578-3941 Call to book a trip!
Freight Train Fishing Charters
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SHOP UPDATE- Custom rod sale starts Friday(March 6th) afternoon 3PM-6PM, and runs all day Saturday and Sunday. All Juno Bait custom built rods and gaffs will be marked down. Over three dozen new custom rods just came through the door and will be included in the sale. Great chance to get a good deal on a new custom rod. Help celebrate Todd, Eric, and Ryan's Birthdays by buying YOURSELF a new custom rod!!! (Read this again as a fast talking car salesmen for full effect!)
OFFSHORE- Another weekend ahead with a less than desirable weather forecast, especially for those with small boats hoping to get offshore. Dolphin and sailfish are still around in fair numbers for those willing to deal with rough conditions. Kingfish remain scattered from the Juno Beach Pier to Jupiter Inlet. Look for the kings to be shallow early/late in the day, and a little deeper during high sun periods. The full moon should have a handful of wahoo around. Early in the week a handful of snapper were caught by those bottom fishing.
INSHORE- Snook fishing continues to improve with the warming weather pattern. Look for the early push of big spring run mullet to start showing very soon, and the snook to be following close behind. A mullet fished along a good looking seawall or boat dock usually doesn't go unnoticed by a hungry snook or jack this time of year. Flats fishing remains fair around Munyon Island and Hobe Sound with a mixed bag of action. Scattered sheepshead and black drum have been caught around area bridges using live shrimp or fresh cut shrimp. A few pompano have been caught the past few weeks in the Loxahatchee river using bright colored goofy jigs.
SURF/PIER- Overall it was another decent week of surf fishing for northern Palm Beach County. Spinner shark action is very good right now. Fresh chunks of bait or big loud popping plugs don't go unnoticed long by hungry spinner sharks this time of year. Bluefish are still around in fair numbers, and have been biting best early and late in the day. Some scattered schools of Spanish Mackerel are moving along the beach, and the big schools of Macs are still hanging out at Peck's Lake in good numbers. Pompano fishing is still good for those spending time on the beach, with better action north of Jupiter Inlet. Plenty of croaker and whiting around in the first trough for quick action.
Thanks For Reading,
Note- Look for Captain Eric's Freight Train Fishing Report later today or tomorrow as he is out fishing at the time of writing!