Report Date: September 5, 2018
With Labor Day past us, the summer season is winding down and now we are in our fall fishing pattern. Fall will bring more swordfish trips both day and night. September through November are typically the three best months for swordfish. Although for the past few years, the emphasis has been on daytime swordfishing, September can be one of the best months for nighttime swordfish as this is typically when we used to have the most evening swordfish tournaments. The techniques used in daytime swordfishing versus nighttime swordfishing are drastically different. The daytime fishing involves the use of two rods fished on our near the bottom in 1500 to 1800 feet of water. To get the bait down that far, we use braided line with around 10 pounds of lead. We also fish a second rod attached to a buoy that is suspended about 500 feet off the bottom so we are covering two different depth profiles. With the use of that much lead, most opt to use an electric reel. Although it does not sound sporting, you do actually use the reel just like you would a manual reel, gaining line when you can and turning the motor off when the fish is running. We actually have a variety of reels that we use. Our primary reel is a Shimano 80W coupled to a Hooker electric drive. The beauty of this reel is that you can use the electric portion of the reel when you want to retrieve the line. When you get a bite, you can crank on the handle and fight the fish just like you would using a regular conventional reel. We also have a 50W reel that is strictly manual without any electric drive attached. This method allows you to fight the fish either in the rod holder or in a stand up harness just like you would any other fish. We have a drill attachment that we can retrieve the line with an electric drill when we want to check the bait or go to another spot. We also have a LP electric reel for those that don't want to crank. For the nighttime fishing we are drifting in the Gulfstream with 5 rods which have either live or dead bait. The baits are positioned in the water column at vary depths but are typically 100 feet to 400 feet from the surface. All the reels are strictly manual so its stand-up fishing at its best. For those that want to see both types of fishing (day and night) we offer a 12 hour combo trip which starts at noon and ends around midnight so you get to do both.
Besides swordfish, there are still mahis in the Gulfstream and if conditions are right September can be an excellent month for that. In September we also start kite fishing again targeting sailfish, mahis, kingfish tunas etc.
In August I was up in Cape Cod for a few weeks mating on my buddy’s 66 Viking. We did a canyon trip and caught a few white marlin and lost a few blue marlin including one that was well over 500 pounds. Since I’ve been back we did a few mahi trips, which were very productive and also trolled on the edge for wahoo, kingfish and bonitos.
A lot of boats go in the yard in September to get their annual boat work done. We are lucky enough by having a center console that we can do our maintenance throughout the year. In essence there are fewer boats out which means there are more fish for the boats out there. So whether it is a swordfish trip, a mahi trip or simply kite fishing the edge, give me a shout and lets go catch some fish.
Capt. Dean Panos