Monday, November 30, 2009

A fishing Day at the Key West Beach

I managed to get both fishing poles in my backpack and stuffed the shrimp and squid into my soft cooler bag and started off on the bike.  It is about a 10-15 minute ride down to the beach.  I take Catherine to the end  (2 blocks) to Thomas and go down about 8 blocks to Southard and then turn left to get into Ft. Zachary Taylor Park.  It is the best beach in Key West.  I stop at the entrance and pay my $2.50 fee for the day.  It is another 2-3 blocks to get to the beach.

I park my bike and lock it.You do want to lock your bike everywhere you go.   You see a lot of bikes w/o their front wheel at the bike stations on Duval Street.  I walk down to the beach and look at the water.

The high winds and recent rain have blown up some seaweed on the beach.  People are in the water so it must be warm.  I start to climb the large boulders on the stone jetty.  I usually try to get on the very tip right where the Alantic Ocean meets the Gulf waters.  A family has my favorite spot and a pelican is fishing right beside them.

I decide to try squid today.  I rig up and toss out the bait.  The wind is blowing hard and the line is drifting towards the Gulf. 

I decide not to try to fish two rods today.  The Yellowtail Snappers are hitting the squid as soon as I cast.  They have very hard mouths and you need a sharp hook and a good hook set to get them.  They strip me of the bait several times before I get a the first one. 

Wow!  I tried to hold the fish out to make it look bigger, but this was how big the first fish was.  I throw it back in to grow and keep casting out.  I have a 1 oz. lead sinker on but it is still drifting out to the Gulf.  I managed to catch about 10 of the small Yellowtail Snappers before the family on my favorite rock leaves.  The kid gives me his extra bait as they are leaving tomorrow and Mommy doesn't want to take it back to the hotel room. I sneak down to my favorite rock.

I caught a nice Pompano and a small flounder within a few casts. It was starting to be a nice afternoon. 

One of the Carnival Cruise ships was leaving the port as I was climbing back to the beach.  Most of the cruise ships only port for a few hours and leave to avoid high dockage fees.

I get home and get ready to prepare fish for dinner.

We walk over to the alley where the little old lady runs her husband's home-based fish stand.  We buy one more red snapper for the pot!  We cook it up on the George Foreman and Molly starts making the fish taco sauce.

She is cutting up green pepper, onion, avocado, mango and some salad dressing and seafood seasoning.  We are going to have soft tacos tonight.

The fish came out great and we each had a couple fish tacos and enough left over fish to make Fish Chowder for tomorrow.

We eat a pint of Ben and Jerry's ice cream and decide to hit the hot tub.  It helps to relax us at the end of the day.  We  have almost all the New York Times finished and I really enjoy the stories in the New York Times Magazine.  Troy (my oldest son from Los Angeles) called and they are getting excited about their visit.   They will be here December 3rd.  They fly into Miami and drive down to the Keys.  We told them to pack light and casual!  We even go to church in T-shirts and shorts and sandles.  The minister had shorts on and a Hawaiian shirt.  Just the way we like it!

Next blog will be the sights/sites of Key West.  We will travel down Duval Street and then go to the Historic Seaport Area. Stay tuned!

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