Ft. Lauderdale has a large cruise ship port in the winter and early spring. Fishing for Sailfish is also very good in the winter and early spring here in Ft. Lauderdale. Many people about to embark on a cruise from Port Everglades, Ft. Lauderdale?s port, combine these two options in their travel plans and that is just what Richard and his wife did.
Richard had dreamed of catching a Sailfish for some time and when he and his wife booked a 10 day cruise, they decided to come a day early and get a little fishing in as well. He gave us 4 hours to produce his dream fish and the day of his charter? Well, conditions weren?t exactly perfect for his plans. LOL
Armed with purchased live Goggle Eye?s, we set out to try and fulfill this dream. But recent rain had left the water cloudy and green so we went deep at our first attempt. It didn?t take long before our first bite came, a large Hammerhead Shark appeared and was hooked. Not exactly what we were looking for? It was quite a test for Rich and took over 40 minutes to land and release. He was quite spent after this fight but we still had some time left, so into the green water we went, hoping the shallower waters would off our bounty.
Moving back and forth through depths where Sails had been in recent days, nothing was biting our baits. As crew, Andrew and I were becoming frustrated and were running out of time. It would soon be time to head in. A smaller Hammerhead appeared and ate a bait, was hooked and handed to rich?s wife. He?d had quite enough of that! LOL This fish was hooked on lighter tackle but there is a big difference between a 9? and a 4 ?? Hammerhead. As we fought this shark, a large, black spot appeared by one of our kite baits. It was him, Rich?s Sailfish. Andrew was quick to react, the small shark was ignored for the moment and the Sail was hooked!
This Sailfish struck with such speed and power, we were even sure if it was a Sail. Maybe a White, or small Blue Marlin was what we had on. We made quick work of the smaller shark and set our task to getting Rich?s Sail.
With his earlier ?on the job training? with the large shark and the excitement of having his dream fish on the line, he did an excellent job of fighting this fish. The Sail had taken tons of line out and all had to be retrieved. It took about 20 minutes or so to get the fish to the boat for pictures and measurement. And then, it was time to go home?
It doesn?t always work out this way, putting a guest with the fish they hope to catch. But today was a lucky one. So if a cruise from Ft. Lauderdale is in your pans and you have a day before or after the cruise? You might think about spending a little time with us fishing for Sailfish, or shark or any of the other species we catch here. It really can be a blast!
Capt. Steve Souther
Ft Lauderdale Off Shore Fishing