A Tale of Unbelievable Giant Bluefish on the East Coast of Florida.


Jay Lawyer

Hello Capt. Butch.

This is Jay Lawyer. We have you booked the Sunday of May 16th. I have been reading your reports and I must say we are very much looking forward to the trip. I have a few questions.

1) What time will you want to meet at the ramp?
2) Which ramp?
3) How long shall we plan for the trip?
4) Would you like us to bring you some food?
5) If you remember, I had just bought a few new Daiwa Emblem Z series and was wondering if I can bring them along, or should we use yours?
6) Did Ron Jones ever call you to book a June Trip? I recommended that he do so.

My wife Mo(who's e-mail this is) and I enjoy reading your reports and we definitely appreciate your accommodating 4 people.

FYI IF you enjoy a "different" fish story, here is one. We were in an offshore tournament in my 26' shamrock yesterday. We were at the buoy for the 6:00 shotgun start. The weather report was dead wrong and the seas were a cold and sloppy 4-6 ft chop. About 60 boats took off on out and I went back in to try and salvage a decent day on the river for my guests. (I have spent too many long days in nasty gut wrenching seas to volunteer to run 35 miles due east out of Daytona in that stuff!!!)

Anyway, we got into some jacks on light tackle under the north bridge when the largest inshore barracuda I have ever seen joined the party. He was a good 35 lbs. I rarely see them that big even offshore. Anyway, the only thing we could find to actually have a chance to catch him was some pre-rigged double hooked medium ballyhoo with about 6ft wire. I grabbed a 4/0 senator, set up the downrigger, pulled anchor, and turned to troll the spot his was in. I got a lot of funny looks from some of the locals I know that were there, seeing the hardware I set up for a fish they had not seen.

Anyway, the actual weird part was the rig was NAILED!!! as I made the first pass. The fish charged for the pilings, with much more vigor than a cuda, even a big one. I thought maybe grouper but the fish surfaced and thrashed its head. It was a blue fish that was close to thirty pounds. It took a good 7-10 minutes to work it up to the boat, with a dazed look from the other boats around. In fact, several home owners came out to see what all the fuss was about. I personally have never seen a blue fish over 8-10 pounds except offshore, then only up to about 20lbs. We ended up losing him at the boat but decided it was definitely worth one more pass before we needed to head in to beat the oncoming weather.

Same scenario, right as the trolled ballyhoo, (With a purple islander in front) passed the inner piling, it was smashed. A somewhat smaller blue fish this time, that we did land and keep for smoking. This one was a tad over 19lbs. I have never seen such large blue fish inshore and was wondering if you have come across anything like that? I know they are migratory but I wonder if a few obvious monsters may stay around, like a big grouper who has found his home?

Anyway, I hope this e-mail was not too long, I hope to hear back, and I hope you enjoyed the unique encounter I had.

Jay Lawyer

If you have any questions or comments, would like to book a trip, or would like to submit a story, please email me at capt@barhoppr.com.

Bottle at Sea Or, call 1-239-633-5851.
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