InTheBite 2011 Captain of the Year, Capt. Glenn Cameron
Charter fishing is a tough job: aside from having to consistently locate and catch plenty of fish for your clients, there are also the long hours on the water, the daily chore of keeping an expensive boat up and running, dealing with sometimes cranky clients, training a string of mates to work the deck the way you want it done, the endless bills for bait, oil changes, bottom jobs and much more. To do it, and do it well, is a lot harder than most people think.
But it’s a life that suits Capt. Glenn Cameron, the 2011 InTheBite Captain of the Year and one of the top charter skippers anywhere in the world. Fishing out of Sebastian on his family’s boats before moving to Ft. Pierce, Florida some 20 years ago, Cameron bought his first charter boat, the venerable Breakwater, in the late 80s or early 90s, he recalls.
Specializing in sailfish but also chasing just about anything that swims off the Florida coast, Cameron soon became one of the top charter captains in the region. Tournament success followed; since those early days, few can match his record of wins in the region’s sailfish tournaments, including his multiple victories in the Florida Triple Crown and elsewhere. Cameron’s next boat, the Floridian, soon became a fixture at or near the top of the standings in just about every event in which he chose to compete.
With success comes the occasional freelance offer to run a private boat, fish a few tournaments and maybe win a few bucks. That was the case last year when he teamed up with Sandy Smith to fish the Bahamas Billfish Championship at the helm of Smith’s ride, Zues. When the salt spray finally settled after the fifth and final event, the team had shattered the overall BBC record for points, easily earning them the title of Bahamas Billfish Champions. We pretty much redefined how to catch blue marlin in the Bahamas, he says. In the past, people thought you needed 50s and 80s but we were using 20s and 30s on all of our fish. The team won or placed in four of the five BBC tournaments, an achievement that’s not been matched in the history of the Series. They also won the Bacardi, releasing an impressive string of blue and white marlin and sailfish, all on light tackle.
So what does the future hold? This season, Cameron is returning to his charter roots, having purchased a 48-foot Torres, Flo Rider. He says he’ll concentrate his spring efforts in his home waters off Ft. Pierce and then turn to the blue marlin-rich waters just over the horizon in the Bahamas for the summer. He does plan to compete in the BBC again this year although he admits that in order to fish the Series to win, it takes a dedicated team as well as a very healthy financial commitment. Last year, we fished on Monday and Tuesday, prepped for the tournament on Wednesday, then fished [the tournament on] Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Then we’d move the boat [to the new location] on Sunday and start all over again, he says. We spent a lot of time looking around, and that really helped us to know what’s going on instead of just paddling out on tournament day and hoping for the best.
Cameron also reported that he’s been concentrating on the sailfishing off Ft. Pierce, enjoying one of the hottest bites of the last few years in the 2011/2012 season. When asked about his thoughts on the great fishing this year, he replied, There have been some years in the past where we’ve seen big numbers of fish like this, but I really think we’re getting a lot better at catching them. We fish more as a team these days. And certainly the switch to circle hooks has helped a lot; there’s a lot fewer injuries to the fish so that’s helping too. It’s not like the old days where I’d follow Chip Shafer around wondering what the heck he was doing to catch all these sails.
A group of captains are nominated each season for the InTheBite Captain of the Year award, after which they are voted upon by the previous Captains of the Year. Capt. Cameron has been nominated for this award five times but this is his first win. The award has become the most prestigious honor in sport fishing that’s presented to the professional sport fishing captain.
For booking information, contact Maggie at 407-908-8104 or visit www.captcameron.com.