Fishing Reports

Fishing Frenzy for Pompano

If you know, you know. Pompano are the IT fish when surf fishing in Florida. No matter if you are on the East Coast or West Coast, these highly sought after fish are not only a blast to catch, but they are damn good eating!

Pompano Queen

Absolutely had a blast today at the Surf Cart Meet-Up! Then hit the beach and brought home the bacon…*cough, cough…The Pomps 🐟🎣

Saturday, December 12th, 2020
Where: Matanzas/Crescent Beach
When: Incoming (1p to 3:30p)
What: Pompano, Bluefish
Water Color: CLEAN Green Money
Winds: ENE 6-7mph, Surf 1-2 ft
Bait: Freshly Dead Shrimp, Fishbites (Sandflea, White Clam, Pink Shrimp), Live Sandfleas from Genung’s Fish Camp
Rigs: life4reel Double Droppers, The Sinker Guy Sputniks, Overthebarrods Rods, Noel Kuhn Spikes
Bite was pretty hot 🔥 then died off slowly. The fishing was great but seeing everyone, putting faces to names, and meeting new fishing family was the BEST!!!! ❤

Surf Fisherman’s Best Friend

Surf fishing is a lot of work. There, I said it.

Fishing is not all big fish, perfectly choreographed photos, beautiful beaches and expertly plated coastal cuisine. It’s hard work, research, trial and error, failure, blooper reels, bad casts, lost tackle, scouting spots, cleaning (lots of cleaning), rig tying, lost fish, hooks in fingers, hooks in other places, paying the taxman, moving spots, regretting moving spots, fileting in the dark, and so much more!

Let’s touch on that moving spots piece of the puzzle. If you are not catching fish, why are you still sitting in the same spot hoping that something will change? You need to move down the beach and find different structure (post about finding structure coming soon) or you need to pack your shit up and hit another beach. Moving can be a pain, I get it, but it could change your whole day!

For years we broke everything down, packed everything up and always felt like time was wasted. This year, our Christmas present to ourselves was to dramatically change how we transport gear. And let me tell you, this set-up is a game-changer. From moving spots to on beach/off beach time and even clean up procedure, our new baby is one of the best gifts money can buy!

Nice rack.

Get your mind out of the gutter people…I’m clearly talking to the truck.

Everything you need to put together this set-up can be found on Amazon. While I am always trying to keep it local, this was the only way we found each piece needed. You only need the Adapter Kit if you have a Toyota or Nissan truck because of the factory bedrail system. Here are the pieces you need:

Yakima Manufacturer Model Numbers: 8001151, 8001158, 8003093, and 8001168 (adapter kit.)

Feel free to email me at if you have specific questions! The instructions that came with the set-up are very straight forward and they send the tools you need as well!

Take Kids Fishing

Kids probably don’t remember their best day of watching television.

Let that set it.

Nobody ever grows up and says, “man, I can remember that one day when I binged watched all four seasons of 90 day fiancé.” A great day on the water sticks with people. It can change perspective and may even start a new hobby for someone.

Today was a lesson in patience. It was my first time taking someone out fishing and not just someone: a teenager. But guess what, he listened, he caught fish, and I’m hopeful that he had a great time! That kid just brought home FREE fresh fish for dinner with a smile. Teaching kids (well, anyone) that being able to provide for yourself is invaluable.

Cheers to you neighbor kid. Tight lines!


Neighbor kid has been wanting to go fishing so today he got his wish 🎣

Where: Neptune Beach
When: Outgoing (8:30a – 12p)
What: Whiting, Bluefish, Shark
Water Color: Clean but the weeds….ugh
Winds: W 5 mph, Surf 1-2 ft
Bait: Dead Shrimp, Fishbites (White Clam, Pink Shrimp), Frozen Clam, Cut Bait
Rigs: life4reel Double Droppers, Sinkerguy Sputniks, FSA/OTB Rods

Tough Conditions Make Great Fishermen

Weekend Report – Northeast Florida Surf Fishing

November 7th 2020

Where: Amelia Island State Park
When: Incoming Tide (8:30a – 12:30p)
What: Whiting, Pompano, Trout, Baby Bonnet, Spot, Bluefish
Water Color: Dirty early, started to clear
Winds: ENE 14 – 15 mph, Surf 4ft +
Bait: Fresh Dead Shrimp, Fishbites (Yellow Clam), Crab Knuckles, Cut Bait
Rigs: life4reel Double Droppers, The Sinker Guy Sputniks, FSA/OTB Rods

November 8th 2020

Where: Amelia Island State Park
When: Incoming Tide (9a – 11a)
What: Whiting, Bluefish, Spot, Black Drum, Redfish, Baby Triggerfish
Water Color: Started to clear then the weeds moved in
Winds: ENE 14 – 15 mph, Surf 4ft +
Bait: Fresh Dead Shrimp, Fishbites (Yellow Clam & Yellow Shrimp)
Rigs: life4reel Double Droppers (Chartreuse and Hot Pink Floats – Eagle Claw 1/0 & 2/0), Sinkerguy Sputniks, FSA/OTB Rods

Pompano are Here

After a very long two weeks of poor weather, the beach was calling my name! We headed out and BAM: the Pompano are here in Northeast Florida.

A busy morning turned into a busy afternoon of cleaning fish!!

Where: Little Talbot Island State Park
When: Low Incoming Tide (10a to 12p)
What: Whiting, Pompano, Bluefish
Water Color: Much cleaner!
Winds: NNE 6-7 mph, Surf 1 – 2 ft
Bait: Fresh Dead Shrimp, Fishbites (Pink Shrimp, Yellow Clam), Crab Knuckles
Rigs: life4reel Double Droppers, Sinkerguy Sputniks, FSA/OTB Rods

Don’t Judge a Book by its Cover

The struggle was so real today…

Moved spots, fished through the rain, but still caught some good ones! Lesson of the Day: Things that seem perfect can be deceiving; sometimes you have to struggle a little to get the reward. Today was a perfect example of why fishing is not an exact science.

October 10th 2020

Where: Little Talbot Island State Park (moved) A1A Access Amelia Island
When: Incoming Tide,10am to 11:30am // 1pm to 3:30pm
What: Keeper Whiting, Bonnethead, Baby Mangrove Snapper (Sorry, it was pouring rain so there’s not many pics!)
Water Color: Morning (Clean Money) then into the Afternoon (Dirty Dirty)
Winds: SE 10 – 15, High Surf 3 – 4 ft
Bait: Fresh Dead Shrimp, Fishbites (Pink Shrimp, White Clam, Sandflea), Fresh Sandfleas, Frozen Clam
Rigs: life4reel Double Droppers, Sinkerguy Sputniks, FSA Rods, Penn and Shimano Reels (I’ll be doing a post soon of the detailed set-up)

Weather Pattern in Northeast Florida

I sure hope that the weather pattern does not repeat last year…I’m definitely saying some choice 4-letter words in this photo.

2019 proved to be a tough year fishing in fall/winter for people that worked a weekday schedule. Monday to Friday were perfect conditions and the weekends were not ideal fishing conditions at all. 2020 is starting out with a low blow to surf fishermen; 20 plus mph winds, dirty water, and rough currents have tested us all. This past weekend was brutal on the beaches of Jacksonville and Fernandina but we still went out to report on the conditions in my new live fishing report series on Facebook. Don’t forget to follow life4reel on Facebook to get the notification when I go live on the beach!

Saturday October 3rd 2020

Where: Fort Clinch State Park (moved from A1A Beach Access 39)
When: Outgoing, 10am to 11:30am
What: Whiting, Sailcats
Water Color: Money
Winds: NNE 19 -20 mph
Bait: Fresh Dead Shrimp, Fishbites (Pink Shrimp), Blue Crab
Rigs: life4reel Double Droppers (Pink worked best), Sinkerguy Sputniks

Fishing Withdrawals

After two VERY long weeks of an awful weather pattern plus training for a new (and very exciting) career, we finally got on the beaches of Northeast Florida. While it was not a record day and I didn’t keep anything for a new recipe post, it was just what I needed to reconnect with my favorite things in the world: the ocean and fishing!

The storms, the king tides, and the Nor’easter certainly changed the structure of some beaches so reading the water and finding the deep troughs with runouts are going to be crucial over the next several weeks of fishing in Jacksonville Florida and on Amelia Island. As “summer” fishing turns into “fall” fishing (we’ll talk more about this soon, I promise), tactics will need to be adjusted. To be a good fisherman you can go to your honey holes, use the same baits all year round, and have decent days here or there. To be a great fisherman, you must know how to adapt and be willing to change things up. Great fishing is not a simple math equation, it’s calculus mixed with common sense, dedication, and a hell of a lot of passion. Tight Lines Y’all…

Here’s the report from today:

September 26th 2020

Where: Little Talbot Island State Park
When: Outgoing/Incoming 9am to 1pm
What: Baby Pompano, Whiting, Sailcats, Rays, Jacks, Ladyfish, Baby Black Drum
Water Color: Money
Winds: NW at 7mph, shifting to the East
Bait: Fresh Dead Shrimp, Fishbites (Pink and Green Shrimp killed it today) and Cut Bait
SetUp: life4reel Double Droppers (Chartreuse and pink worked best today), The Sinker Guy Sputniks, and Rods

Pro Tip: If you think your secret spots are safe, they are not! Weather, tides, and time can change things so never stop scouting! *Scouting trip breakdown post coming soon on!!

Girls Can Fish Too

That’s right folks, girls really can fish by themselves.

Today was going to be just another day (working from home today, cough cough) but when that 5am alarm went off, my fishing soul told me to get out on the beach. It was just me and the sea. There’s nothing more therapeutic than to hear the seagulls, the waves crashing and the line screaming!

This is actually a teaser for what’s to come because I caught a killer Redfish from the surf. Here are the details:

Thursday, September 10th 2020

Where: Little Talbot Island State Park
When: Incoming Tide 8am – 11am
What: Pompano, Whiting, Jack, Redfish
Water Color: Clean Money
Winds: E at 6 mph
Bait: Fresh Dead Shrimp from Browns Creek Fish Camp, Inc.Fishbites (Pink Shrimp slayed it), Fresh Cut Bait (Whiting)
Rigs: life4reel Double Droppers, The Sinker Guy Sputniks, Florida Surf Angler Rods

Mullet Run Is ON In Northeast Florida

Surf Fishing on Amelia Island: Don’t always trust the weather report!

Monday, September 7th 2020

Where: Amelia Island
When: Incoming Tide 8am – 12pm
What: Pompano, Whiting, Bluefish, Trout, Shark
Water Color: Money
Winds: ENE at 10 – 12mph
Bait: Fresh Dead Shrimp, Fishbites (White Clam and Pink Shrimp), Finger Mullet Chunks, Live Finger Mullet, Whiting Cut Bait, Frozen Clam
Rigs: life4reel Double Droppers, The Sinker Guy Sputniks, Florida Surf Angler Rods

It was hard to keep bait in the water because the fish were hungry! Shout out to FISHBITES for always producing and congratulations on the new store opening today: Fishbites Trading Post 170 Nix Boat Yard Rd, St. Augustine