My Birthday Rockfish TripPosted on: December 19, 2018 By: FHMD
This summer I wanted to catch a big rockfish. So this summer me and my dad learned how to catch them. Our first two times we did not catch any rockfish. But then we figured it out and started to get the hang of it and started catching them. So during the summer my dad and I had a blast. But I still hadn’t caught a big one yet. I asked if I could go fishing with Captain Tom Weaver, one of my dad’s friends, for my thirteenth birthday.
On my birthday, I got up at 8:30 a.m. and got to the dock two hours later. We had to wait for my friends Finn, Patrick, and Chase to arrive. Captain Tom was already there, and we finally got under way at 11:00 a.m.
First, we went to the north side of Poplar Island and trolled for approximately half an hour to 45 minutes. The water was not moving which meant that the fish were not feeding. There were a lot of fish on the Fish Finder, but they were not going for anything.
We went to go find smaller fish so we then went to the inside of Poplar Island to troll for smaller fish. When we got there, I saw some birds circling in the air, and we spin casted near where they were circling in shallow water. While we were spin casting, we caught a lot of 18 to 18.5-inch fish with white and green paddle tails. Unfortunately, we had to release all of them because they were too small to keep. After a while of not catching anything big enough to keep on the inside of Poplar Island, we decided to try trolling again on the north side of the island again. The first troll we did was on a long trench in about 25 feet of water. We had out two rods, they each had two lures on them. On the first troll I caught a 25-inch rockfish. For the second troll we did we then moved farther west where there was a hook in the trench. My friend, Finn, caught a 22-inch fish while we were there as well, which we kept because it was big enough. Then we trolled for a little longer before moving to a new location.
Our next spot was in Eastern Bay. It was an artificial reef tag that was put there for fishing. There were fish on the fish finder but we could not hook them. It was a cold Fall day so my friends and I took turns going below to get warm. While we were running to our last spot, North from where we were, we could see cargo ships, so this was going to be our next and final stop. As we approached the bow of the anchored cargo ship we could see fish, stacked up 20 feet down.
When we got there we started jigging, and my friend, Chase, caught a 23.5-inch rockfish. We kept this one as well. We also caught many eighteen to 22-inch fish by the cargo ships. We fished some more before packing up and heading back to the dock.
We got back to the dock at 5:00 p.m. where we took some more pictures before we were finished for the day. When we got home it was getting dark so my dad and I knew we had to clean the fish before we lost daylight. We got a tarp, cutting board, knife and brought the fish to our picnic table in our back yard. We started to fillet the fish, cut its head off and threw out what we could not eat. We clean and wrapped it up in aluminum foil and kept it on ice in the refrigerator. I could not wait to help my mom cook the fish, but we had to wait until the next day.
The next day we had the rockfish I caught for dinner. My mom baked it with lemon wedges, onions slices, oil and herb butter. Wrapped in foil and baked for 25 minutes. This was the best fish I ever had! We had so much we ate the rest the next day.
This is one of the best birthdays I have ever had. I really enjoyed fishing with my friends, my dad, and Capt. Tom Weaver, he taught us a lot. My friends are still talking about our fishing day with Captain Tom every day at school. I cannot wait to go out with Captain Tom and catch more fish!
To book your own fishing charter with family and friends for 2019, visit Plan Your Trip on FishandHuntMaryland.com.
This post was written by Parker Herman
Images courtesy of the author