Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Well, another thing to cross off my "Bucket List".  Kevin, his sister Jackie and I went deepwater fishing in the Gulf yesterday!  We checked out the boats and decided to go out on the American Spirit out of Destin's famous Harbor Walk! 

We woke to a cloudy day with threats of rain all day! However, we chose to proceed.  We stopped along the way to pick up some Dramamine (I have never been seasick, but the seas here have been rough lately, and I was worried about Kevin and Jackie).  After our little pit stop to fortify us against possible seasickness, we made our way to the dock to board the American Spirit.

The American Spirit does have a small galley aboard, and the owner's wife will cook you up breakfast if you like, and later lunch.  The only thing about that is, the smell of bacon in the morning might not be the best for those who are prone to seasickness!  NOW HEAR THIS ....  if you have never been out to sea before TAKE DRAMAMINE one half hour before your depart!  Seasickness is not fun!  I get so upset with people when they blame the Captain or the boat for their miserable experience because THEY failed to prepare adequately! 

As we headed out the inlet, I knew we were going to have a rather "bouncy" day out there.  It was gray and there were storms all around.  As you can see, it wasn't long before the rain hit!  We did have periods of no rain and then it would return.

Our Captain did a great job of locating three great fishing spots for us.  At each stop we would (25 of us) bait our lines and drop them to the bottom and immediately wind them up 5 to 10 turns and wait for the fish to start hitting...which they did!!!

We had an absolute ball!  Each line bore two hooks which we baited with pieces of squid or mackeral before dropping them overboard.

The fish caught included beautiful Red Snapper (which were out of season and had to be thrown back) Trigger Fish (which were also out of season) Vermillion Snapper (we caught a lot of these) White Snapper (caught a lot of these too!) Yag Grouper, Brown Snapper, and some others I have never seen or heard of before!

We had a hard time convincing Jackie that she had to throw that big Red Snapper she caught back into the Gulf!  I swear, if she could have found a way to smuggle him ashore she would have!  The crew members aboard were so attentive and responsive to every need, whether it was a tangled line, helping to bait a hook or removing the fish from the line (which they had the proper tools for). 

Everyone aboard caught quite a few fish and had a wonderful time in spite of the rather inclement weather!  We actually stood out on the decks in POURING rain at times and ignored it because we were having so much fun pulling fish aboard.  One little boy (and it was his first time out too) caught an enormous Brown Snapper!  Everyone aboard was envious of that one!

We boarded at 8 AM and returned to the docks at 2 PM...we really would have been happy to stay out a few more hours because we were having so much fun "catching" fish!
Yep, not just fishing, really catching.  Just a few of those fish people caught are hanging behind Kevin and Jackie after we came ashore dripping, sopping soaking wet!

That's Kevin holding our catch!  The great deck hands filleted our catch for us and we walked away with about 10 pounds of great filets.  I would really have liked to have a few of them whole, but for some weird and unknown reason the guys are not allowed to "scale" fish at the dock!  I really don't have anywhere at the condo where I could have scaled fish without them ending up all over the place, so I settled for the filets as I watched them throw away all that useable fish.

We made a quick pit stop at the Publix on the way home (I sent Kevin in since Jackie and I looked like drowned rats!) to pick up some Zatarain's fish breading, stuff to make hushpuppies and a few other little goodies. 

We all hit the hot showers when we got home to warm up and rinse off!  What a fun day.
Next thing I did was to gather up all I needed in the kitchen to have our fish fry with the fish that were fresh from the Gulf!  So, as you can see we "pigged out" on fish, fries and hushpuppies - did add some salad for a little "healthy" fare, before finishing out the evening with some Rocky Road ice cream!

Okay, okay, I know that was a lot of calories and I am supposed to be losing more weight, but it was the only meal I had all day.  I had only had a piece of toast with Laughing Cow Cheese before going out and by the time we ate it was about 5 PM!  Hunger got the best of me!!

The cost for the lovely, fun and exciting day of fishing aboard the American Spirit was $65.00 per person, and that included the license, bait and tackle.  You just had to show up with your little body and be ready to fish!

One more tip!  When I got dressed that morning, I didn't realize that it was going to pour all day and I wore WHITE pants....Mistake!  When they get wet....welllllll
Fortunately I had worn a bathing suit under them!  Yike!  Next time I will wear some jean shorts! Also, make sure to wear some shoes which will have good tread on deck...even when it isn't raining, those decks get wet from spray, fish being brought aboard, and bait!

One thing I can promise you though, is that if you like to fish at all, you MUST do this.  It is a total BLAST!!!

1 comment:

  1. Oh, I really wish I was there. Thanks for blogging the adventure. Jackie's got her PINK on, I see.