By Dave Ferrell
There’s no getting around it…boats cost a lot of money to operate and maintain. Keeping a large sportfisher, or even a small charter boat, up and running through an entire season is akin to walking a tight rope; where any little slip can cost thousands of dollars in repairs and lost fishing time spent in the yard. Some of these nagging problems can’t be avoided. All boats eventually experience issues of one kind or another and the more sophisticated and advanced the systems onboard, the more likely you are going to run into trouble if you aren’t staying on top of things. But let’s face it, even the best captains can’t keep a boat from breaking down.
As more travel options start to open up, the Dominican Republic has likely been on the radar for many anglers and boaters. The Caribbean country is a well-known hotspot for sportfishing enthusiasts and casual vacation-goers alike with plenty of options for saltwater social distancing. Currently, U.S. citizens are able to travel to the tropical haven without the requirement of a negative COVID-19 test for entry.
Photos and text by Captain Dean Butler
Without a doubt, fly rodding for billfish is a great challenge for even long-term fly fishermen. Much of the recent interest in giving it a go arises from anglers, captains and crews from a conventional fishing tackle background. This factor adds another level to the challenge.
As familiar as you may be with the target species, there’s a whole new realm of tackle, technique and IGFA rules to get your head around. This article aims to ease the transition to fly fishing by providing a range of information about aspects of the sport. Beyond the hardware and recommended procedures, though, I encourage anglers to treat every encounter as a part of the learning process – live-action reference data for understanding billfish behavior and for honing new tactics to catch them with a fly.
By Steve Dougherty
Despite a week of continuous rain and more precipitation on the radar, we were graced with a break in the weather allowing for a quick sea trial out Port Everglades aboard the all-new Hatteras GT65 Carolina. A brisk east wind added to the uncertainty, stirring up the seas with a short distance between crests. “Perfect day for a sea trial,” Captain Bill Diamond chuckled as we cleared the bobbing sea buoy.
By Capt. Jen Copeland
After mating a summer in the Gulf aboard a pretty little Carolina boat named Hook-N-Bull, Carter Drummond began his second year of college. It was the fall of 2009 and the 60-foot Billy Holton steamed toward Panama without him. With owner/operator Tom Shumate and Will Cocke at the helm, Carter was not sure he’d ever see her again. After trying to juggle his childhood love for fishing and school for over a year, fishing won out. Drummond took the next semester off and flew to Panama in pursuit of a dream.
By Captain Scott “Fraz” Murie
Have you ever been around someone whose attitude is always negative or whiny?
You see this type of person in the morning and say, “Good morning, how are you?” Their response is usually, “Good morning, my belly hurts, my arm hurts, my head hurts, etc…” Then for the rest of the day you hear him pouting and whining about someone who was mean to them or they wanted to go marling fishing but their boss wants to go grouper fishing.
By Elliott Stark
What is the best time you’ve ever had with your captain? When things are good – with the right fit –fishing is great and everybody enjoys being on the boat. When things are not good, crew quits, people get fired and, whether or not you catch fish, the boat is uncomfortable. Nobody really likes this scenario.
By Capt. Dale Wills
Being the big skipper—riding high in the captain’s chair—is the goal of many professional sportfishermen. After several years in the cockpit learning the ropes, honing your skills and mastering everything there is to know about sportfishing boats, getting the call to take over can be the logical progression for many mates. Once at the wheel, the helm chair can lead some to memory loss about what it was like to work in the cockpit. Everyone appreciates a bit of professional courtesy in the workplace. Mates are no different. What follows are ten basic courtesies that a captain can do to make his mate’s job and life that much easier – and more fulfilled.
Feel like you’re missing something on your fishing trips? We’ve got you covered with the chance to win our Release Ruler bundle, which includes the Marlin Release Ruler, White Marlin Release Ruler, Striped Marlin Release Ruler and Marlin Release Ruler Belt—a $179.96 value. All you have to do is subscribe to InTheBite’s free newsletter. Just enter your name and email below for your chance to win.*
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