A Sea of Questions...
Answers to your most burning questions about your charter captain....
One of my friends had a charter guest bring several glass jars with her on the boat. The captain asked her what she was going to do with the jars and she told him that she wanted to collect the different types of water colors in the jar. He told her that all the water was clear and that it was dependent on the color of the ocean floor and reflection of the sunlight that determined the color from above, but she did not believe him. At least not until she realized it was true and all her jars came out with the same color water - clear. I am sure there are several captains throughout the Keys who have experienced something similar to this.
So first off here are some of the most common questions that I get asked:
Are you from here?
Where did you grow up?
I am from Homestead, Florida about 45 minutes north of here. That is where I grew up, but I spent a lot of my summers and free time down here in the Keys with relatives and friends going fishing.
Is fishing what you’ve always wanted to do?
Yes! I was lucky enough to be able to ride along on the big boats and be a mate when I was growing up. I went to college for a couple of years, but after missing the water too much I came right back to fishing.
What’s the biggest fish you have ever caught?
I caught a big blue marlin in Bermuda once that was around 850lbs. I don’t have a picture of it, but I do have a picture of this 575 lb. blue marlin that we caught there as well.
So, is this what you do all the time?
This has to be one of my favorites. Even though it’s a legitimate question because it could be a seasonal job, it still cracks me up. Yes, this is what I do all the time, every day that I get booked - year ‘round.
What’s the craziest thing you ever saw on the boat or out on the water?
This is always a tough question because there is not one certain thing that has stood out. We have seen Cuban refugees, abandoned refugee rafts, sunfish (mola mola which are a rare fish to see), whale sharks, water spouts, rough seas, all kinds of debris (like pallets, trees, huge buoys…) etc. You never know what you might see out there and it keeps the job exciting!
Who was the worst customer you’ve ever had?
I get asked this question a lot. To be honest, we have been very lucky and have had great people on the boat. I can’t lie and say that I haven’t had some difficult people. Some have had high expectations when the fishing was slow, but most of the time they can see the effort. Some don’t take direction well and I have had my rods broken or even dropped over the side of the boat. One guy jumped on my hydraulic hatch because he thought it was flying open and broke it. Most don’t have bad intentions, but things do get broken.
What are the biggest waves you’ve been in?
The biggest waves I have ever been occurred during one of our local sailfish tournaments. I was fishing with my dad, uncle and aunt. We saw that it was going to be rough, but we went anyway figuring we could always come back in. We hooked a sailfish right away. We thought that because it was so rough that it just might win us the tournament. It wasn’t so, but we stuck it out all day. We finished in second place, tying the lead boat with 4. The seas that day were 10 to 12 feet and it was a challenge that I will never forget. I don’t know if we would do it all over again.
How do you get your captain’s license?
I get asked this question often as well. To get your captain’s license you have to show sea time, take a written test, a CPR class, a drug test and get a physical. It is time consuming and certainly not easy, but for me well worth it.
Is the water always this blue?
This one makes me laugh just because of the above mentioned story of collecting water colors. I usually tell them that the water is usually always this blue unless it is windy and murky in which case it might be a beautiful emerald green. We are so lucky to be able to fish these beautiful waters on a daily basis.
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