Two million dollar 61′ Viking sport fisher to Kayak, to land, some times it just don’t happen


I got invited by friend Scotty, to do some sail fishing this past weekend. Since I have yet to sail fish this season, I drove down to Islamorada, Fl Friday to fish out of a 61′ Viking. This thing burns 120 gallons an hour, cost between 2.5 to 3 million dollars, has all the luxury you could imagine. TV, hot cold running water, living room, kitchen, fridge, bed rooms, you name it it had it. We fished for a total of 6 hours for sail fish. If you did not count the bait, all we caught was a mackerel. Yes a very expensive boat ride indeed. That goes to show you, no matter what gear you got or even where you’re fishing, some times the fish just don’t freaking bite! Thank goodness I wasn’t stuck w/ the gas bill. 🙂

The next day knowing the weather would be crappy in Tampa I made a phone call to my friend Capt Joel Tomlinson down in Duck Key. As chance might have it he was available to do some fun fishing and weather was great. We decided to go for permit early in the morning and see what we could find. Using 20lb gear and 25lb leader believe it or not we didn’t see a single permit in the morning. What we did see was some early season laid up tarpon on the flats!

First a couple cast I got rejected using the permit gear. The third try was the charm however. I made the back hand cast up current and the poon slurped it up 20 feet from the boat. Using the 20lb gear fighting a 70lb Tarpon the fight was on. After everything calms down I manage to give Joel the rod so I could drive and take photos w/ the other hand.

After we got some lunch we headed back out with Derek Rust to look for more. It was such a a nice sunny day with winds at only 5-10mph we had to try for the permit again. This time we saw a bunch but those !$@#$! would not eat. We blamed it on the wind going one direction and the tide going the other way. At least that’s our excuse anyways.

On the drive home I made phone home again and again they tell me it would be raining and overcast back in Tampa. This was confirmed using the weather app on the phone. The app also told me that the weather in Miami was be 5mph and sunny. I gave my friend Chris a called to see if was to be fishing in the morning and he was. After a nice meal at Origin’s Asian Tapas (Excellent Sushi but didn’t care much for the Thai red curry dish, too sweet) we were up at 5:30am to launch the Kayak.

We were greeted with windier conditions that expected but it soon died down to 5mph winds and very sunny skies. Chris and I peddle the Hobie Kayak looking for the ever elusive permit for hours on end only to come up empty handed. We then tried for peacock bass in the canals but again we were denied. This is when we threw up our hands and said screwing it. There’s no winning today and headed home.

I took the long way home via the old Tamiami trail. I stopped at a couple openings to cast the fly rod into the canals. I manage a couple of dink snooks to escape the total skunk for the day.

So this trip, I fished from a multi million dollar sport fisher, a skiff, a bay boat, a kayak and ended it all fishing from land. Wow what a full circle not to catch any fish. lol

Ziggie and Mad Dogs down in Islamorada : Expensive, ($30+ per meal avg plate) food was good but the dish I had hogfish and shrimp was a disappointment.Fish seem a bit over cook and rice was on the mushy side.

The two shots bellow were shot using the Sony in “hand held night shot” mode. It takes multiple exposure and combine them to make a decent photo in low light.

Sony shot in night mode

Sony shot in night mode.

Not too bad from driving the boat at the same time.

Looks like this guy was a bit wounded.

Man O Wars were all over the flats(Sony)

Micro snook (sony)