My friend Bruno Underwood called March 18th to ask if we were up to fish—his only opportunity to take us out since he’s working round the clock. We have been enjoying fishing charters with Bruno for five years. On March 19th he and his dad, Baron, met us at Gene’s Bay, north Eleuthera, at 9 and off we went to their favorite spots, plotted by GPS. We were in from 12 to 25 feet with 25 lb.-test spinning tackle and cut bait (goggle-eyes).
For the first half hour, only nibbles; Baron said these were yellowtail stealing our bait, but ”they’ll soon be full and will move on for the big boys.” Sure enough; around 9:45, Emily hooked a huge mutton snapper, and from there they came at us hot and heavy, 14 by the time we quit at 2pm, the biggest haul we have ever seen, most of them over 10 lbs.
After running out of goggle-eyes we switched to lobster bait and took two triggerfish, a Queen and an Ocean Tally. We were exhausted fighting these monsters, which are determined battlers, and try to head for a rock once hooked, where they can break your line—but again, Baron showed us how to relax tension until they swim back out, and we didn’t lose any.
Emily Langworth also hooked a nurse shark. It looked about 10 ft long in the water but probably wasn’t that big. She worked it to the boat before it broke the line—must have been over 200 pounds. They say these are good eating but it wasn’t welcome. The Underwoods didn’t want that big brown thing flopping around filling the boat.
Back at the dock Bruno and Baron filleted the catch. I stuffed these huge steaks into plastic bags and jammed them in the cooler with ice. The huge cooler was so packed Ian Langworth had to sit on the lid to make it close. Altogether there must have been 35 lbs of fillets. He ferried us back to the mainland at 4:30. We dropped a heavy bag off with Bahamian friends on the way home. We have since held four enormous fish dinners and given away bags of snapper. Also, the freezer is still packed. Who says you can’t catch big fish the old-fashioned way?