Catherine, Jason and I went out spear fishing on Sunday. The weather forecast called for 10-15 knot winds. In the morning the Sand Key weather station was reporting 20 knot winds. Right before we left it was down to 17 knots, but that still sucks so we headed to the gulf side. The winds were east to southeast so the gulf side wasn’t that bad. There was 15-20 feet of vis on the gulf side, which is pretty good for that area. We hit a bunch of rocks and coral heads. We also hit a beat up wreck, which didn’t have much desirable fish but was pretty good snorkeling.
One thing I have noticed on the gulf side is the large schools of tiny fish, not as common on the Atlantic or so it seems to me. A small rock on gulf side will be covered with life, filled with lane snapper and maybe a school of glass minnows hovering over it.
We spent the day in shallow water and the fish were small but plentiful. I practiced with my new pole spear. The pole spear’s simplicity seems to make it great for lower vis and shallow water. There is no shooting line to be tangled on rocks, and I am not blasting my shafts through little fish and into rocks behind them. I shot a bunch of hogfish and a couple snapper with the pole spear. I saw one nice black but it was gone into the distance almost instantly. I might have had a shot with my gun , maybe. The only thing I really didn’t like about the pole spear was that it unscrews in sections. I bought it for traveling so that was necessary but I will keep my eye out of a used one piece for use at home. I was hoping to shoot some sort of bigger fish with the pole spear to see how that goes, and if I need a slip tip for it, but there wasn’t much that was big on these gulf side patches . I will take it out to the reef later this week and see if I can pop a big yj with it.
Total catch was a bunch of hogfish up to 19 inches long and a couple of snapper that were more for target practice