One of my best friends ever in life has just left us due to cancer. John "The Hag" Hagmann took a piece of me as well as others to Heaven on January 10,2014.
He was a loyal,honest,loving, superb friend,husband and father that will be missed forever.
I have dove with divers from around the world but never competed against a better spear fisherman than the "Hag". His ability to locate and kill fish was second nature to him and he would show you up on every trip. He was a mean,tuff, deep diving powerful hunter. The stories of this man are legendary.
He once shot a hundred pound AJ at 200 plus foot and tore his entire bicep from the bone due to the fight. He did not let go of his gun and shoot to the surface. Instead he fought and landed the fish. That's as manly as it gets.
I was lucky enough to have dove with him on hundreds of occasions for years and share his most passionate passion of spearfishing with him on Capt. Troy Wetzels Kingfish .The bond we have is unbreakable due to the times on Capt. Troy's boat competing against each other.
For days now I have been going through the thousands of photos so that I could share his smiling face with sportsman such as yourselves but am literally crippled with sadness and cannot manage this. All I have thought of since his services is helping his family fulfill his final request of spreading his ashes over his favorite oil rigs.
Out of the mountain of pics I have of him holding giant fish this one in particular say's it all. Here he is with the state record AJ of 138.5. It suits him well because he truly is number one.
It is not fair that he had to leave so soon and my heart goes out to his family deeply.
I have had the opportunity to know Mr. Frank Davis personally. My last talk with him was at LOWES in Slidell. We talked about his family in the Woodlands TX and that he was heading there one day. One of my best friends has lived there since Katrina and it is a wonderfull place.
We talked about fishing,family,friends and me pushing for a local fishing program. He was a totally awesome guy all the way around. He is the definition of Nawlins through and through and will be missed dearly by many.
My son is seven and we periodicly fish Sac A Lait at night year round. We always do the Frank Davis chant... "Sac A Lait Tonight..We Having Sac A Lait Tonight". We always get a kick out of it and I never really thought of it untill now .That chant was handed down from Frank to my generation and now to my sons.He will pass it on to his kids. Frank was infectious to say the least.
It was only propper that Laird and I fish Sac A Lait tonight in 30 degree weather for our buddy Frank.
He was with us cause we are having "Sac A Lait Tonight".
We love and miss you buddy and God Bless your friends and family through these hard times.
Made a fun trip recently. Was planning on diving the shrimp boats especially after talking to Kevin Beach and Billy Wells at the dock. They had incredible catches. Billy told me the boats were picking up and rolling out but I still was game. Called a buddy of mine in the Louisiana Shrimpers association and he told me they were moving in close. That is exactly where we found them but to shallow for tuna and very dirty so I opted for Wahoo and Tripletail.
Could not have made a better move or had a better time.
Worked again today on the shoot with Producer Christina Melton
concerning the oil rig removal and their importance they play for the
economy and eco system.The film should be done in December. I
am putting my heart and soul in every second of it.
gaining ground. Not everyone agrees on all facets of this subject but at
least we have made it up the chain of command and are talking civilly
about this very important subject that concerns all
fishermen,industry and science.
Please check out the video
below. I have worked with most all affiliated with this great piece and
want to continue working with everyone that cares about the Gulf
of Mexico. www.towersoflife.com
They are busting out here all day and night. The tuna are thick. I get off on
Sept. 3 till the 17th. Anybody want to hit it give me a call.
Support the Save Louisiana Team.
Mike and crew keep up the hard work and keep your noses to the grind stone!
Still working the oil fields but have made
time to fish and dive with family,freinds and clients when I was
I had the greatest pleasure of visiting some of my best
freinds in the world. The Stricklands. Will and his brothers have been
fishing with me for years. I watched their boys go from early teenagers
to men that have served their country on three tours to the middle
east and now have met some of their grandchildren.
them in Lenark Florida "The Forgotten Coast". We were planning to take
my boy diving for scallops but the weather was bad so we fished.
My son caught trout,redfish,sharks and a fifty plus stingray. We
met Nita Strickland and still is a fisher woman at 90 years old. What a
incredible woman!!!! Miss Nita has a place in my wife,my son and
my heart forever. Miss Nita we LOVE YOU!!! YOU ROCK BABBY DOLL!!!
I can see why her boys are such great people. They could not
help turning out to be such incredible men with her raising them. Will I
love you and your brothers so much that it is bringing a smile to my
face as I type this. Thank you so much for inviting us to your home
and thank you from the bottom of our heart for putting my boy on such
a great fishing adventure. When people see the pic of my boy
fighting and landing that ray they probably think he had some help but
we know what went down. Laird is a animal on the stick.
still been working with Louisiana Broadcasting and the Wildlife and
fisheries making a documentry on the oil platforms. It should be
wrapped this December.
I took a couple school teachers shark
diving believe it or not and had the great pleasure hanging all day
with a old true freind Captain Chris Dimmwiddi. Yes he is still crazy!!!
Took a couple guys out for a tuna run. We left the dock at 11
pm and was back at the dock at 7 am with seven hogs.
some stuff Im leaving out like taking the old lady and boy offshore
recentlybut got to get under the Crane. Over and out.
Been running drilling pipe,cutting boxes etc to Ship Shoal 349 for the last couple weeks. Saw a sight I have never saw before in my life on the water today. About five miles north of SS 349 came across over fifty Whale Sharks. My crew filmed on their phones. From giants to babies feeding on the surface. This run is about seventy miles from Bellpass out of Fourchon. They were in 278 foot of water. Back at the dock now and about to head back at midnight. Saw them at 10am this morning. The exact coordinates are 28-08-555 90-59-290 Wish I had tomorrow off or I would be there with them. Hope this helps.
At the dock for the
moment and just turned on my
phone. I took and returned a deposit
from a cage diving operation out
of California. Deal fell through. He
is not completely out of the
picture but is running his
operations until the end of August. He
leases a boat at the moment and
wanted to fly under the radar not
to cause issues with his boat
should he not be able to convert in
a timely manner. We spent
months with Mino Marines
engineers going over plans to
basically gut the boat and
construct eight suites that carry
twenty four clients. That's how
they do it over there. The boat is in
Amillia getting ready for bottom
side inspections. Other than that it
more than likely will be listed with
a broker. I have been running
cargo/crew boats for the oil
industry and seems to be on a up
slope. Could not refuse the offer
with the awesome company I
working for. Had some great times
on The Big E and miss it but she
was a great stepping stone to
where I am now.
Been keeping up to date on the fight to stop the
diversions and kudos to Mike,Capt Ricks and all others that are
educating the public on how bad this could be to our culture. Keep up
the great work guys.
I decided to whip out the ole Glacier Bay
the other day with some buddies from Texas and set out to put
some tuna in the box. They had a long drive and did not get to Venice
until early morning and simply needed to sleep a bit so I just messed
around town until they rang.
With the late start I still felt
confident we would get on the fish. After entering the gulf and seeing
how fishy it was three miles off the pass I knew we were set for a
perfect night. We did stop and put some blackfin and bonita for cut bait
in the chest before heading to our destination. Along the way we
picked up some perfect sized live bait as well.
The water was very
dirty as far out as Mars and things were not looking that great with no
current and cloudy water with no signs of yellows on the sounder.
That did not discourage us as we bounced around until we found them.
It took about four hours until the guys said they had enough
and I set out for the dock around three in the morning. Hitting the pass
while the sun is rising with a box full is always a good feeling. Just
for those wondering what the bait of choice was i will tell you. It was not
the cut pogie,cut bonita,cut blackfin,live bait or casting poppers. It
was an old tried and true method I have been using for years.
take Frenzy poppers ( Frenzy Poppers only) and tie them to my fifty's. I
have one guy put his back about twenty yards and the other guy about
fifteen yards and hold the rods in hand set on strike. I let the boat
do all the work cruising barely above in gear speed. I have the guys pop
every now and again. I like to believe the baits mimic flying fish
even though we did not see any on this particular night. The
double sets of stout trebble hooks on the Frenzy poppers allow for a
solid hook up to the fish and the fifty's make quick work of the
I cannot tell you how many times this has been
effective when nothing else is working and have never shared this
method before this post. My clients and buddies always get a kick out of
it and hopefully now so will you should you choose to try it. Good
I have also been involved in filming a documentary in
association with Louisiana Public Broadcasting and the Louisiana Wildlife
and Fisheries surrounding the Rigs to Reefs program and the
importance the oil rigs play to the recreational and commercial
fishermen,not to mention the marine life that surrounds them. We have
other shoots to accomplish before it hits the air but will let you
guys know when it plays.
The last shoot was real fun being
that the producers wanted to add some spearfishing in the mix so
me and some world class divers were happy to oblige. The video we got
was off the hook! Big Cobia and Aj's up to seventy pounds were
taken free diving in dirty sharky waters. Loved every second of it!
The highlight for me was getting a glimpse of a monster 100 plus
Cubera down deep . All I can say is he is lucky I was holding a camera!
Last but not least want to thank Mr. Tom ,Mr. Danny,Mr.
Wayne and everyone else that put on the Hideaway Lake Fishing Rodeo
yesterday. It was a blast and the kids were just besides themselves.
Great people,great prizes and a great time had by all! You guys
Just want to give a heads up to the folks that keep calling for trips on the Big E. I have truly tried to call everyone back but have been embarked on selling the Big E since early December and have a potential buyer that has put down a refundable deposit over a month ago.
I have been very involved with shipyards,engineers,fabricators, material pricing etc...
The potential buyer is in the process of doing his due diligence and out of respect for the potential buyers wishes he would like our negotiations to stay private for the moment.
I have already lined up another boat to do my cage diving from starting this summer and have had a couple amazing job offers that I am seriously considering as well
Other than that me and the boy have released hundreds of Crappie at this point as we are fishing them almost everyday since Thanksgiving. The little sucker wont give me or the Crappie a break!
Rok, Please forward this to the LCUDC e-mails especially to the CCA
people. thanks tgm
Council Members and friends, I
contacted Tom of DEMA awhile back and he requested that I send him
information on the removal of decommission platforms. From the
letter and memo, you will find we have a new powerful ally in this battle.
In the very near future, we have 2 very important matters
coming up for public input. The Gulf Coast Council will be taking public
input on the matter of declaring artificial reefs which would include
decommission platforms as Essential Fish Habitats (EFH). NOAA will
be taking public input on placing 7 to 9 Caribbean coral species on the
endanger list. Some of these corals are found on the platforms.
I will be sending the links out soon and it is very important for you
to comment on this 2 connected issues. If and when these corals are
found to be endanger and then are found on a platform, what
justification is there for removal the platform?
Just want to give you hardcore sportsman a heads
up on our local boy from Baton Rouge, Patrick Kelleher of Mossy
Oak will be on the Outdoor Channel tomorrow night. The show is called
"Gumbo and Arrow". Be sure to tune in.
For the last couple days me and the boy/friends have been chasing
the Sac-A-Lait again. The last couple days we worked hard to catch very
few if any. They were not hitting anything we presented.
Today we found our groove and the jig they could not resist. We
put 44 pigs in the box in two and a half hours. Will be heading to Honey
Island Swamp this week with an old friend to dive for some Alligator
A just released announcement from NOAA concerning which looks like
legal action by the Center of Biological Diversity (CBD) to get several
coral species listed as endangered. The announcement stated 7
Caribbean species would be listed.
Public hearings will be
heard next year and the final decision is due December 2013. I would
think most if not all of the Caribbean species could be found on
the platforms. If that is correct, would this not add to why the
platforms should not be removed.
http://www.biologicaldiversity.org/about/staff/in dex.html A list
of their staff, (lots of Lawyers) I will be sending them a mailing similar to
the one I send to Tulane and Loyola Law Clinic requested legal
action against NOAA and the Secretary of the Interior to place a
moratorium on the removal of decommission platforms until such time
the Gulf Council can come up with their plan to establish artificial
reefs as Essential Marine Habitats, etc. and to protect the marine
From: Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management
Council Sent: Tuesday, December 04, 2012 1:56 PM To:
firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: News from Gulf of Mexico Fishery
Below is a press release
recently distributed by NOAA Fisheries Service announcing that it is
proposing Endangered Species Act (ESA) listings for 66 coral
species. NOAA proposes listing 66 reef-building coral species
under the Endangered Species Act Contact: Christine
Patrick (301) 427-8003 Wende Goo (808) 944-2245 Kim
Amendola (727) 551-5707 (727) 403-6533 (Cell) FOR
IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 30, 2012
In compliance with a
federal court ordered deadline, and consistent with existing
international protections, NOAA Fisheries announced today that it
is proposing Endangered Species Act (ESA) listings for 66 coral species,
including 59 in the Pacific and seven in the Caribbean. This
science-based proposal is more limited than the 2009 original petition
that led to a settlement agreement and the court order. In order to
ensure robust input, NOAA has been engaging the public since the
process began three years ago. Before this proposed listing is finalized
in late 2013, there will be a 90-day public comment period during
which NOAA will hold 18 public meetings.
Earlier this year,
the President directed that any potential future designations of critical
habitat carefully consider all public comments on relevant science
and economic impact, including those that suggest methods for
minimizing regulatory burdens. Therefore, any potential future critical
habitat designation in connection with today's proposed listing will
include a full analysis of economic impact, including impact on jobs, and
to the extent permitted by law, adopt the least burdensome means,
including avoidance of unnecessary burdens and costs on states, tribes,
localities, and the private sector of promoting compliance with the
ESA. As this process moves forward, NOAA will work with stakeholders
to minimize any potential impacts of possible future action on the
economy and jobs and, in particular, on construction, fishing, farming,
shipping, and other important sectors.
"Healthy coral reefs
are among the most economically valuable and biologically diverse
ecosystems on earth," said Jane Lubchenco, Ph.D., under secretary
for commerce for oceans and atmosphere and NOAA administrator.
"Corals provide habitat to support fisheries that feed millions of
people; generate jobs and income to local economies through
recreation, tourism, and fisheries; and protect coastlines from storms
and erosion. Yet, scientific research indicates that climate change
and other activities are putting these corals at risk. This is an important,
sensible next step toward preserving the benefits provided by
these species, both now and into the future."
NOAA is proposing
seven species as endangered and 52 as threatened in the Pacific, and
five as endangered and two as threatened in the Caribbean. In
addition, the agency is proposing that two Caribbean species already
listed under the Act be reclassified from threatened to endangered.
NOAA is seeking public comment on the proposed listing before making
a final listing decision by December 2013.
measurable economic value for communities around the world. One
independent study reported that coral reefs provide approximate
$483 million in annual net benefit to the U.S. economy from tourism and
recreation activities and a combined annual net benefit from all
goods and services of about $1.1 billion. NOAA also estimates the
annual commercial value of U.S. fisheries from coral reefs to be more
than $100 million; reef-based recreational fisheries generate an
additional $100 million annually.
Listing species as endangered
does not prohibit activities like fishing or diving, but prohibits the
specific "take" of those species, including harming, wounding,
killing, or collecting the species. It also prohibits imports, exports, and
commercial activities dealing in the species. These protections are
not automatic for species listed as threatened, but can be established for
them as well. Furthermore, if species are eventually listed, NOAA
will consult with other federal agencies that permit projects that
may harm corals to help avoid further damage. The consultation process
allows NOAA to work with federal agencies and project proponents
to develop ways for projects to proceed, but in a way that protects the
long-term health of these important species.
identified 19 threats to the survival of coral, including rising ocean
temperatures, ocean acidification, and coral disease. As carbon dioxide
increases in the atmosphere, the oceans warm beyond what corals
can withstand, leading to bleaching, and the frequency and severity of
disease outbreaks increase, causing die-offs.
listing is in response to a 2009 petition from the Center for Biological
Diversity (CBD) to list 83 coral species as threatened or endangered
under the ESA. In 2011, NOAA and the CBD entered into a stipulated
settlement agreement requiring NOAA to submit for publication a
proposal as to 82 of the 83 coral species by April 15, 2012. In March
2012, the District Court for the Northern District of California
approved an amended settlement agreement ordering NOAA to submit a
proposal regarding the 82 coral species on or before December 1,
2012. All of these coral species being proposed for listing are already
protected under the Convention on International Trade in
NOAA used the best available scientific
information to assess the status of the species and decide if the
species met the ESA's definitions of endangered or threatened. Earlier
this year, after publication of a peer-reviewed status review report
and a draft management report, NOAA took an additional step of
seeking public comment prior to proposing the listing. NOAA received
approximately 42,000 comments and collected 400 relevant
scientific articles, reports, or presentations, which were all considered
when making the proposed determination.
NOAA's mission is
to understand and predict changes in the Earth's environment, from the
depths of the ocean to the surface of the sun, and to conserve and
manage our coastal and marine resources. Join us on Facebook, Twitter
and our other social media channels at
For more information,
background documents, and instructions on submitting comments, go
This announcement is forwarded as a courtesy of the Gulf of
Mexico Fishery Management Council. About Gulf of Mexico Fishery
Management Council The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council is
one of eight regional Fishery Management Councils established by
the Fishery Conservation and Management Act of 1976. The Council
prepares fishery management plans, which are designed to manage
fishery resources within the 200-mile limit of the Gulf of Mexico.
Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management
Council Charlene Ponce Public Information Officer 888-833-
1844 ext. 229
are the best bang for the buck on locating upwellings in my opinion. The
maps are satellite imagery of the sea bottom. Google it or pick one
up at Academy Sports. Been using them for years.
As far as
lump goes it did pick up last year and you do have a chance to pick
tuna/wahoo around that time of the year. I have been there four
in the past month or so filming and fishing/spearfishing. They were
twice with or biggest being 202
Me and my boy have been spanking
the White Perch for a couple weeks now. We have used a few
different methods to coax these babies into biting the hook.
White and blue/Red and Chartreuse tube jigs with the flakes in
them have worked moving them slowly on the bottom.No flakes no bite.
Some days they wont hit nothing but live chads on the
bottom and under a cork but the funnest has been trolling for them in
the deep cuts using pink Roadrunner spinners(chrome) tipping them
with solid black tube grubs.
Most have been hitting the frying
pan with plenty being given to friends and others released.
have been focusing on some Bass fishing as well. With nothing over two
pounds this week it has mostly been practice for my boy. Watching
him switch from an assortment of artificial to live chasing the Bass
has been a true honor for me to watch. No doubt he has the touch as he
brought a five pounder to the boat only to watch it throw the hook.
Needless to say he has made us stop at that spot twenty
times this week as he has it out for the one that dodged the net.
Just hitting the dock. Me and the boy ground it out on a slow cold wet night to bag 61 White Perch. Nobody Id rather fish that hard with than the man. You show me a six year old fishing till one am bagging fish like this. There are none. Im a proud dad and he is not happy I cut it short in his eyes because we would still be out there if It was up to him.
Just getting a chance to put up a quick post. Have been hunting hard for Big Eye,Blackfish, Flounder and giant Amberjacks. All trips have been a success.
The Big Eye have shown up in their usual spots and have had the luck of being the only boat on them twice in this specific area.. they usually start their run about now and they are one of my favorite fish to target. The big boys should be here soon.
I have been night diving pretty much lately. Basically getting in the water around ten at night and getting out around four am like a frizzy pop. They have not made a strong run yet but when they do me and a few Sea Tigers will cut them off at the pass.
The Black Fish have made their run and six new state records have been laid to rest by Team Xtreme. When the conditions get better we will be back out there after them before they roll out.
Just went with Tracy Palmisano and Chris Ricard this past weekend and Chris wanted a big AJ so we headed to the promise land after doing some shark diving. Chris has already broken 100 lbs this year but we were looking for a dinosaur. We made a bounce down to 250 and were met by some monsters but not what we were looking for.
I felt deeply that there was some bigger ones deeper and was waiting for the young gun to slip up and pull the trigger on one and cause some commotion that would bring a fatty up. This was not the case as he locked in on a 90 pounder and stoned him dead. It was to cool as we were at 250 high fiving,hooping and hollering while being swarmed by tons of Aj's. Got some killer video of this and will post when I can.
This kid is a beast and will be a force to be reckoned with for sure. He is on his way to a title I have held six times... King Spearfisherman of Louisiana this year. Go big daddy go!
Last week I put up a post from a Mcdonalds as I was on my way from a offshore dive trip to a night dive for flounders and asked my wife to throw up a pic from video I had taken a couple days before of some Big Eye. She put up the wrong pic. It doesnt matter because she is awesome no matter what.
Instead of freezing a clip here is some video of that day. We were catching them at will.There is a key pointer in the vid you are about to check out, Always be sure to have the freshest bait you can find. You will see the Big Eye taking in and spitting out the smelly pogies. I knew the second I bought them they were not fresh. Anyway if you find yourself in this situation and have no other chum cut the belly out of any fish you manage to catch and use that.
Spoke to your brother early this morning and all others on the trip to let them know I was calling it for safety reasons. It was to late in the game as the Diesel mechanic could not make it to the boat before 3pm. Sorry thought they would have passed it on to you since your group of ten were driving together. Nobody is more unhappy than me as I was looking forward to sliming the decks.
Im glad it happened the way that it did though because if I would have not headed to the boat to do some minor repair to the port toilet we all would have shown up with two dead generators. Never have I had any issues with them but for some reason the Port was air locked and the Starboard would not idle up to 60 Kilohertz.
Got the Port running quickly and we could have went but for safety reasons I was not going until both generators were on line. Anyway just getting back home from the boat and she is good to go. Turns out there was a short in the brain box on the Starboard generator that was a easy fix. Not a cheap one but easy.
Took the old one off brought it to the parts store and they programed the new one with it. With that said some folks were wanting to do Sat,Sun, Monday but 15 of the crew has to work Monday.
I have suggested you guys sign up for the Nov 16- 18 trip as it will be a good one. My sincerest apologies to my crew and clients but feel I did the right thing.
Hope all is well. Been fishing/ diving allot weather it be on the Big E,the Glacier Bay, a buddy's boat or on the lake with my son. Life is good and the fish have been big. Got pics on four different cameras and will try to post in near future.
Had the great great pleasure of taking Mr. Rudy Hall and his team of engineers on September 21 on the Big E. What a great crew and Mr. Rudy was a fishing maniac.The guy was everywhere. I thought I had an extra deckhand,deck boss,chummer,gaffer,live bait catcher,cook and captain with this guy. His energy,excitement and ability to fish is unmatched to date.
The food was everywhere. They fed 30 guys like no tomorrow. The best steak I ever had Mr. Rudy. Seriously! It was such a pleasure to meet a man that was the son of the mind behind engineering the greatest spear tip ever made. I learned about this tip decades ago from my legendary dive buddies such as Jerry Bourgious made back in the fifty's..
To my knowledge 23 of the guys were tuna virgins but I am positive all caught a tuna or two on the trip. We had a blast chasing flying fish and squid for bait under a beautiful night sky. On the way in the guys watched the games while cooking up a feast.
Mr. Rudy and his gang engineer oil rigs so anyone looking to build one call Keystone Engineering as they are the best at what they do!
A few guys put together an October 19 trip. Leaving Friday around noon and returning Sunday the 21 around noon. From what I understand they booked 20 guys in two days and we would like a few more if your interested please call me at 504- 710-2950.
The Sea Tiger's 3rd Annual Rodeo was great out of Venice Marina. Great people and BIG fish were speared. Cubera's, Aj's and Tunas upwards and above 100 pounds. We appreciate the wild hog donated to us by the Butlers and loved every bite.
The shrimp boats are the name of the game at the moment with big boys all around them. All the guides are putting a hurting on them. My last attempt on shrimp boat hopping was last Wednesday. Suppose to be one foot but was more like three to fives. Water was ok and we found one boat tied up to a platform. Chummed and dove but was covered up by sharks not tuna.
Over the radio the fleet seemed to be having the same issue. Very few boats with tons of sharks. I think the previous days of six to nines had them inshore waiting for the go and were just getting on their way out again.
We called it early due to conditions,lack of boats and the sharks were getting boring except on my last dive. I met the most aggressive Bull in years. He was big and did not like me spearing his lunch. He literally pushed me to the top and on the boat. I was diving alone and loved every second of it.
Again.... We had such a great time aboard the Big
E playing in the Gulf this past weekend. I would give a long blown
report but it truly is as simple as great people,food and fishing. If you
are as hard core as some of the guys I have taken since May 18
come give it a shot because all I can say is I'll put you in the zone for the
longest you have ever stayed in the strike zone.
Just took the
boat up to Belle Chase to do some routine maintenance. The boat has
ran hard since May 18 without any mechanical issues. For me to
keep it this way she needs constant TLC.
Im in a very good
place with this boat. It has proven that it can make it and have zero
pressure on any venture she takes on. Plan was to run Save the
Blue 2 with her out of Freeport but have decided to break it down on
I have the owner of Incredible Adventures and his
five associates coming down to make a business proposal to me
concerning the Big E being a permanent fixture in their global Cage
Shark Diving operations. I will hear them out but when she is not
scheduled for anything else she will be fishing out of Empire Louisiana.
Empire has proven to be a great location for the Big E. I like
that we have access to the East and West side of the river. The folks are
so great at the Delta Marina to us we definitely feel at home there.
With so many "GREAT" marinas to choose from in this state Im glad to
see it work out on the first shot.
I have a couple major projects
in play now that needs some immediate attention which I have
One being my Rod Rack invention that most of
you saw at the boat shows and Im drilling for water on one of my
Another issue Im having is a recurring problem
related to being electrocuted eight years ago that I seriously need
to handle. It is causing me major problems that could cause me my
profession if I don't get a handle on it including a proper
With that said the next run on the Big E will be our
first caged shark dive that I have tons to do to do it right and I
cant wait for!!! Stand by for details.
This winter will be off the hook
having the Big E in play. Talk about staying warm and dry in comfort
watching the ball games. Cant wait to see you there.
" Sorry to my clients about the delay in posting photos". Im having a problem
with the photos posting sideways but appear to be fine before uploading. Will
figure this out and put up your pics as soon as I can.
Worst case scenario it will be Monday as Im scheduled to fish my Glacier Bay
"X-Factor" tomorrow and Sunday.
Have a great weekend.
Heads up on the 60 hour trip leaving this Friday. We will be heading for a collective group of species. Grouper,snapper,tuna and a few guys are bringing deep dropping gear. Have a few spots available and would love to see you there. The last run I made was a filming shoot and can honestly say I have not seen so many big Gags on every dive. Give us a ring if you want to play in style.
Thank you very much for the kind words. I am happy to see the anger, the curiosity, the questions, the doubts, the educated guesses, the questions about or government, the science facts, the comments from the everyday fisherman etc... Mission accomplished.
What we don't need is fighting among ourselves. As I stated before it does not matter who does or does not get along and it does not matter who takes credit for the stoppage of rig removal in my opinion as long as it ends. I know for sure that "we" being individuals,organizations,oil companies,politicians etc.. have made much head way here in the last six months and must keep the pressure on while the iron is hot. I feel we are one big team.
I can attest to the work being done by the CCA because I do pay close attention to what they are doing and they are doing a great job.I think we all are so frustrated we are looking for that one group to end the madness of killing our fishery when in truth this is a complicated issue due to laws on the books since 1977 and the BP oil spill did not help.
Check out this site. It is a great source of info
We all know it is wrong simply using common sense and I hope that that will be enough to prevail in the end. I can not tell you how sad I am after the Black Elk Energy/ Save the Blue tour knowing that the platforms we visited are as good as gone. Unless you are a diver that dives the oil rigs it truly is hard and quite impossible to comprehend. The photos Im about to put up is for all of you to do what you want with as long as they are used to promote the issue of saving rigs. Use them on your sites,send them to friends,politicians,organizations, anybody you want to. They are not for sale. They are free to all of you to help in any way you think you can. Some of the photos are good some not so good it is just my way of contributing to the cause.
I would like to get into a lengthy report about the week long trip with Black Elk Energy/Save the Blue but to sum it up this company took it upon themselves to fund a tour of rigs to be dismantled to educate science,the public and their industry.
My hat is off to them and knew from the first time meeting Mr. John that he was the real deal and does not take no for an answer. Please contact them to see what you can do to help. Contributing to Save the Blue would be a great start .
I took in upwards of 2000 photos in seven days in hopes of capturing the feel of these incredible givers of life to our eco system and fishery. I would also like to say that we were trying to capture unique pics of federally protected,endangered,exotic corals and managed species which I can say we did over and over on each rig. Some species we took pics of have never been documented in the Gulf of Mexico but the highlight for me was the last dive.
While diving High Island 270 a tagged lemon fish swam by and I took a pic. When I boarded my deck hand/50 ton captain Blake had caught the fish. Blake is from Ocean Springs and the fish was tagged by Dr. Jim Franks of the Gulf Coast Research Laboratory from Ocean Springs.More than a pretty cool consequence.
The moral of the story is this rig is about to be gone and this very important research would not have been logged if the rig was not there.
Another cool thing about the trip was we had commercial divers on board from Legacy Diving. These guys make a living cutting down rigs and can honestly say they are now against this crime against nature. They never had the chance to here the side we gave them as it is just a job to them. The facts they gave me will be useful in the fight. For example a regular three pile platform with one conductor in 200 foot of water has over 200 tons of growth they scrape off in the scrap yards. Two hundred tons! Three piles are the baby rigs of the Gulf. The loss of life on a production platform would be more than one hundred times this loss according to them.
They said that the contracts they get for cutting rigs down consist of a "final sweep". This is where they finish the job making sure there is no scrap left on the bottom. In their own words they said when they are done they leave a completely lifeless mud bottom where there used to be teaming life.
I explained to them that they are making quick money but putting themselves out of future work maintaining the structures that can be used for ornamental trade,mariculture,solar energy,wave energy,wind energy etc... They agreed
Another cool thing was working with Summerhay's Films. Soames Summerhays is a diving machine for a seventy four year old dude. I hope I got it when and if I make it to his age. I am not a fan of 3D films but must say that seeing the dives we did in 3D will be the best film ever made in 3D should we finalize this project. It was incredible would be putting it lightly seeing the multitudes of colorful species coming off the screen. The best stuff on film I have ever saw. Ever!
Thank You Black Elk Energy for giving the public an under sea look of the rigs for them to judge for themselves!
Forgive me for the amount of photos im about to post but as I stated it is how I can contribute.
Captain Al Walker this stuff you are putting out is incredible. To bad BOEMERE and the other idiots are blind to the fact they are killing our fishery. I for one am ready to sue everybody over this. Just give us the word captain! There are so called sportsmen that I will not name here that own scrap yards on the gulf coast that are lobbying for this on the hill and making a killing,killing the gulf. Some sportsman they are! Hope they all rot in @%$# and we need to sue them as well for knowing what they are doing is wrong. Really happy to see you are speaking at the MS CCA meeting June 27. Where is CCA Louisiana? Cant wait to see you again on the Big E this weekend out of Delta Marina. What a great marina, crew and the food is great. Better than any marina food I have ever eaten. Will belly up to the bar for a mixed drink for sure.
I could not agree with you more sir. Black Elk Energy and the Save the Blue campaign have made it a point to bring 100 percent factual data such as this below to the federal agencies and finally get to the bottom of "who is ultimately responsible for destroying eco systems such as this. I am about to unleash a barrage of short films i took on this trip for you guys to spread to the masses. How smart do you have to be to cut this very important life giving essential fish habitat down? This has to stop now and it will. I promise.
Sorry about the confusion. As stated before Im still figuring
all this stuff out with this new operation and my wife is trying to handle
things for me while Im away. As posted here 725 is the summer
Sitting here in Freeport after moving the boat
over here to be closer to Black Elk Energy's oil rigs for a
environmental shoot based on Save the Blue. Will be outfitting the
boat tomorrow with tons of equipment and heading out for a week to
film the incredible life that surrounds and lives on the oil rigs.
Aboard will be my buddy Soames of Summerhays Films that is famous
for his films such as Ocean Oasis and is an IMAX producer among
We will be the first to do a documentary of this
magnitude which will show case the oil platforms true benefit's to
our marine eco system via the platforms.
With that said we
took 19 folks from Black Elk on an overnight trip Saturday/Sunday and
had a great time. Besides having a full time chef aboard that fed us
to death we enjoyed great fishing in 5 to 7 foot seas. Moms,Dads, Kids,
grand parents and friends were aboard for the voyage
platforms we hit for tuna were a hundred miles out but stopped in the
High Island area on the way out to do some AJ fishing. After landing
some monster AJ's and beautiful snapper that were properly
released we headed to the tuna grounds enjoying UFC while in route.The
tuna bite has been slow but steady lately but could be much better
considering the numbers we are seeing out there. The reason for the slow bite
is the abundance of Tinker Mackeral,baby squid and glass minnows. When
these baits are as thick as they are it is hard to compete but through the years
I have gained the knowledge and small tricks that equal to bloody decks in
As soon as we pulled up we were in them and had
slow but steady fishing till sun up. They all agreed that we had
enough meat and then headed back to the casa while being pampered
all the way to the dock by chef Todd from Cardinal Catering
Services. What a great job my man and looking forward to another
week with this guy. He is truly an awesome cook.
I will be
bringing back some great footage that I will share upon my arrival home
with you guys. Until then if your interested in fishing on the finest
fishing boat in the gulf please go to
www.extremefishingcharters.com and book your trip of a lifetime.
Rodnreel.com wants to help us welcome the Big E to Empire, LA! Capt. Al Walker of Xtreme Fishing Charters is offering a fishing experience like no other on the Big E. We want to offer you special pricing on the following trips:
June 9-10 Overnight Trip $500
June 16-17 Overnight Trip $500
June 22-24 2-Night Trip $725
June 30-July 1 Overnight Trip $500
July 5-7 2-Night Trip $725 (Empire Rodeo)
July 13-15 2-Night Trip $725
July 26-28 2-Night Trip $725 (Faux Pas Rodeo)
August 10-12 2-Night Trip $725
August 17-18 Overnight Trip $500 (LDWF Rodeo)
August 25-26 Overnight Trip $1600 (CAGE SHARK DIVING)
Hurry up and go to our website to book your trip. These prices are good ONLY on the above listed dates. Each of these trips must have at least 25 fishermen booked in order for the trip to go. We will also offer special pricing for those who customize their own trips (whether it be a 24 hr., 40 hr., 48 hr., 60 hr. or 80 hr. trip) during the months of June, July & August.
Check out our website for scheduled trip dates, online payment options and further details about Underwater Expeditions/Xtreme Fishing Charters.
Good Afternoon Thank you for the nice reports. I REALLY APPRECIATE THEM!!!
It was a long line of hard work to get the boat off the dock for it's maiden voyage and went better than expected because of Capt. Raul and my crew.I did not like fishing with Capt. Raual, I loved it! I can't thank them all enough.
The game plan changed last minute for a couple reasons. One being I wanted to respect the local fleet in a 1 to 2 foot forecast and not put the Big E into the mix of drifting with others fishing the same platforms being I never drift fished a boat of this size. Another reason was after taking a team vote almost all was for heading directly to the Green Canyon, so we headed to Brutus. It was really cool seeing the crew fill up the theater room watching the UFC and Belator fights while in the next room people were watching Shark Tank on the big screen TV's while the BBQ pit was roaring the whole trip. Some of the best food I have eaten ever on a fishing trip.
After the first night of rig hopping and searching for the tuna hot spot we were awarded with a great Saturday morning due to the fact we got into a nice patch of yellowfin.
After the flurry we were scheduled to head for some bottom fishing and again took a vote from my incredible clients and this time it was for bottom fishing.
When heading to the reef fish hole I went over in my head how this would play out being that we were heading for nothing more than a one man AJ limit and a one Warsaw limit for the boat. I was certain that I did not want to be releasing numerous grouper and snapper trying to get one AJ so I made a captains call and headed for Atlantis. I was told after it was a good call by the folks on board because they all had so much fun either catching a yellowfin or watching their neighbor catch one or two or three.
The folks on board were a collection of AWESOME people. We had the pleasure of taking Jeff Mayne of the LDWF offshore. What a cool dude! We are lucky to have this guy watching out for our fisheries but now knowing him as a friend I cant say enough of what an honor it was to have him on the maiden voyage! I also had the incredible pleasure of fishing with long time friend and buddy/owner of Delta Marina, Darren Angelo. He is as cool as ever and I am looking forward to working out of his awesome marina. His staff is bar none and the food is something you have to experience, hence professional chef Burney Young that has a resume that includes most of the finest restaurants on the planet such as Emeril's.
Also aboard were the 360tuna gang like owner TJ and his moderator Han. These guys are animals when it comes to fishing!! The knowledge, equipment and drive they have is why 360tuna is such a great site. These guys don't talk fishing, they live it. The pleasure was all mine! Cant wait to fish with you guys forever.
Let's not forget we had the ultimate experience of watching a master at work. Kilsong is the owner of jignpop.com and the maker of the baddest fishing equipment on the planet. Period end of story. He has fished with me three times but this time he was on the bow in front of me to watch the entire trip. If you consider yourself to be a serious angler and have all the best equipment and you don't have this man's gear, well then you don't have the best. I will post a more formal report about exactly what he was using later. By the time your finished reading the report and have not called the man or ordered his stuff then you will continue to be in the cave man days with the gear you have now. I can and want to go on and on about this man but actually holding this quality stuff in my hand and watching him cast "300 YARDS" and watching his lure take more fish by far than any other was mesmerizing.
Emeric Watson of Wounded Warriors was on board as well. This man is so cool and passionate about the service men and women of our country it would almost be anti-American to not to contribute, donate or join this awesome rodeo. I watched this man dedicate hours into fishing this weekend and he earned every fish. Emeric you are a first class act!
RodnReel.com was out there in full body and spirit. The only thing we were missing was Mike Lane due to his son graduating. I mean what else can I say but rodnreel.com has offered guides to better feed their families due to its professional site and staff. Rodnreel changed my life years ago when I joined and I have never looked back. It was living proof on this trip when I was surrounded by people that I met through this site over ten years ago but now are some of my closest friends. Gino, Lisa, Helmut and Mike, simply put "I Love You".
I mean what can I say, we put people on their first fish, father and son on their first yellow together, father and son on their first yellow limit together, brothers that have fished a lifetime together having their best ever fishing experience. I said it on the trip and I'll say it again, ya'll are the best and I thank you for making my first trip a success!
I also want to thank all the Texas folks that love the Big E for giving me a chance. I hope you feel that me and my boy's worked hard for you and if there is anything you did not like please post or call so I can better your next trip. You guys were some of the hardest, toughest, most relentless fisherman I have ever encountered. Ever!
I want to also apologize for the schedule for June 2 and truthfully I have not worked out the scheduling yet. Thank you for understanding that saving oil rigs is true to my heart and that this IMAX shoot takes precedence over fishing now so we all can fish in the future.
The only thing I know for sure is that this Friday we are running a booked 36 hour trip and then running out Tuesday to stay on the water for over a week filming the beauty of the offshore platforms. Before I leave this Friday I will have the schedule somewhat figured out, I hope.
I do know for certain that we will start taking bookings now for the Faux Pas Rodeo, the Empire South Rodeo and the LDWF rodeo. I will be running a rodeo special and post by tomorrow.
Also please go to www.bigeasysharksafari.com and check out my new pricing, as we will be kicking off the first caged shark dive on August 25 and 26 for a overnight experience you will never forget! I'm going to do it big so come brave the cage or sight see from above.
Sorry for having to slow down on booking the three day fishing extravaganza to where the Big E would be used as a mother ship. A little too much going on and want that to be perfect so those that are biting at the bits to book, I have not charged any cards and you will be receiving a private message from me today. It is a great idea and would work with no problem. During the spill I worked on Duke Universities' R/V Cape Hatteras and learned how to moor numerous boats at one time since there were so many coming and going. Very simple process and learned through experience.
One more thing guys and I think you’re gonna like it. For months I have been working with the City of New Orleans. Yesterday we took a mock river tour. Aboard were Cheryl Rodrigue Director Sales/DMI Conventions and Paddlewheels, Diane Arthur Operations, Janine Dazet of New Orleans Tours, Yvonne Magne and Danielle Magne of DMI Groups and Big Easy Tours.
The ladies loved it! The boat was more than they expected and having chef Burney Young preparing fresh tuna, asparagus, Andouille Sausage pasta, BBQ tuna, grilled zucchini and fresh salad did not hurt a bit.
They are in mix of putting together Casino Cruise/Fishing trip combos, Sunday and Monday Night Football trips all the way to the Super Bowl along with river tours not to mention they and the city are proud to have the only and biggest shark cage diving operation in the Gulf. All I can say is its on and Plaquemines Parish is about to be more than a fishing destination and more like a must see tourist attraction.
Wow! What else can I say! I just
returned from my first off-shore
fishing trip. I had the pleasure of
going out of Empire with Al Walker of
Extreme Charters and his fantastic crew
on the Big E. I can’t say how much I
enjoyed this amazing trip!!!
Having never fished off-shore before, I
was more than a little nervous because
I knew that most of the people on the
boat were serious sportsmen who knew
what they were doing, and I was totally
clueless. In addition, I was concerned
about the comfort level I would
experience on a charter boat. I had
seen the pictures of the Big E, but
sometimes pictures don’t tell the whole
Well, once on board, I quickly realized
I had nothing to worry about. Even
though myself and my better half,
Helmut, got to the dock at the last
minute (not something I would
recommend), the crew immediately came
running out to help us unload our
fishing gear for the trip. We were
shown to the bunk rooms where we
quickly stowed our gear, and then we
took the time to look around the boat.
The Big E is unbelievable! It has lots
of sitting room both indoors and out, a
dining area with several booths and a
big screen tv, a media room with
another big screen tv and 18 theater
style chairs that lean back, a barbecue
pit on the top deck, and a sound system
that was playing music. The inside
areas were air-conditioned and
comfortable, and I immediately felt
better because I knew with all of the
amenities of the Big E, even if I
didn’t catch a thing, I was going to
have a good time!
I need not have worried about catching
fish! Once we were briefed by the
Captain and Al, we took off from the
dock, and as we enjoyed the boat ride
and music, the deck hands set up our
fishing rods. When we got to the first
fishing spot one of the deckhands
showed me how to jig…and that’s where I
caught my very first black-fin tuna. I
know mine was small compared to the
many really big tuna that I saw caught
on this trip – but it was huge to me!
And the deck hands couldn’t have helped
me more with bringing it in! Later in
the trip, when others fishing started
catching fish on top of the water,
another deck hand set up my rod and
showed me how to free-line for fish.
Speaking of the deck hands – they were
awesome! Caleb and his crew really
worked tirelessly in seeing to our
every need from getting bait for our
lines, to gaffing and labeling the
fish, to answering questions, to
keeping the deck clean…they were
great!! There were many times when
several people would all have fish on
at the same time, yet they made sure
that they took care of everyone! I
don’t know how they did it!
Last, but not least, I can’t say enough
about the Captain and Al. From the
beginning, they asked us what we wanted
to fish for, and then took us to the
areas to do it. They kept us well
informed of the depth of the fish and
what bait was working. If one spot
wasn’t working they took us to another.
They, too, worked tirelessly to make
sure we had a great trip!
Although I can’t compare my experience
on this trip to any other off-shore
trips, I can only say I had a fantastic
time. But you know, I also think that
all of those much more experienced
fishermen had a great time too! I
think that’s why the Big E, Al Walker
and his crew, are really special! On
this boat, with this crew, it doesn’t
matter if you’re the best fisherman in
the world or the worst – you’re still
going to pass a good time!!! ---
I have been sponsoring the Hell Diver Rodeo for years and love the shirts they put out. The Hell Divers have an agenda at that is being at the forefront of saving your fisheries.Last year their shirt was the beautiful species like turtles that live on and around the rigs and now it's all about the Grim Reaper.
I want to give the game plan to those calling and asking.
The fact is that we have a diverse group of routes when fishing off our coast.
One route could be from Empire Jetty's and back into Baptiste Collette or basically a west to East trip. Fishing West Delta 133 block, West Detla 152 MS Canyon 311 block hit Mars Ursa area for tuna first night come back into Main Pass 299,296 block and bottom fish during the day and then back to the Floaters like Ram Powell or Nakika for tuna the second night.
This trip im planning on leaving the dock around 2 pm from Delta Marina and heading for some bottom fishing in the West Delta 117 block 152 and the Canyon rigs for big grouper and AJ's. The amount of 100 plus Ajs and groupers over 300 on these rigs are monumental. From there hit the Devils Tower area for tuna come across Mars Ursa and then head west into the Eugene Island and Deep South Timbalier rigs for some grouper aj's and lemons forget about the twenty plus snappers you will be throwing back and then to the Canyon Rigs for tuna after that straight home. Plenty of resting time back to the Marina.
The only thing I would do different is reverse this route. The plans for these trips are going to vary in many ways for example coming straight out of Empire crossing the Grand Isle rigs/ South Timbalier while angling toward the Canyon Rigs hitting platforms the entire way there. Many guys and gals want tuna,tuna,tuna but some long range trips are going to be about the reef fish. Ive killed some of my biggest snapper,grouper and aj's up to 126 out there. I call it "Dinosaur Land". Tons of Louisiana top tens come from there.
I have a couple other business but am going to give this one 100% because with this boat in this area the possibilities are unimaginable when it comes to fishing. Hope to see you soon.
For those gunning for the July 27 trip. Im changing it over to the 26-28 for the Faux Pas Rodeo. This rodeo is awesome. Hope this did not mess you up but to be honest still figuring the booking thing out.
If my old lady finds out Im on the computer Im dead. Have not laid out the schedule on the calendar yet but will be running a rodeo summer special.
All you folks that are bringing your own gear and boats to rodeos might want to experience spending the same money while staying on the water the entire rodeo making your chances to place greater.
Satelite TV in the dining area and Theater room, comfortable Air conditioned bunk with draw curtains,giant BBQ pit open 24/7, Oven stove,microwave,open coffee pot's Full size shower/bathroom's,giant sun deck, lights that will light up a football field,Live bait well's,
Louisiana has some great rodeo's so not matter what state your from we welcome you.
2012 Tournament/Rodeo List
May 21 - May 22 Whitney Bank Invitational Tournament May 29 - June 3 Cajun Canyons Billfish Tournament June 1 - June 2 N.O. Big Game Fishing Club Memorial Day June 4 - June 10 Mississippi Gulf Coast Billfish Classic June 10 - June 14 International Womens’ Fishing Association June 15 - June 16 N.O. Invitational Billfish Tournament June 21 - June 23 N.O. Home Builders Association June 29 - June 30 N.O. Big Game Fishing Club July 4th Tournament July 5 - July 7 Empire South Pass Fishing Rodeo July 13 - July 14 New Orleans Ladies Tournament July 26 - July 28 Faux Pas Lodge Invitational July 26 - July 28 Grand Isle Tarpon Rodeo Aug 10 - Aug 11 N.O. Big Game Fishing Club Fishing Tournament Aug 17 – Aug 18 LDWF Tuna Rodeo Aug 24 –Aug 25 BVFD Rodeo Sept 1- Sept 2 N.O. Big Game Fishing Club Labor Day Tournament Sept 14 - Sept 16 LA Saltwater Series Tarpon Tournament Sept 14 - Sept 16 NO Big Game Fishing Club Fishing Tournament Oct 5 - Oct 6 LA Saltwater Series Redfish Championship
Just seeing your report buddy. From the beginning of my venture relating to the Big E and before I knew anything about the EFP stuff I publicly stated I would not be part of catch shares.
I have my reasons and one of them is yes I to am a recreational fisherman and the other is I think it is going to backfire on those participating.
Giving the Feds that type of control can turn around on you in the future to where you are now in the same category we the recreational/guide guys are in now with the so called "over fished" species.
It has gotten to the point that it is not even worth concentrating on reef fish. It is such a mess. I mean think about it. Two snapper and one AJ that will be closed for the rest of the year starting June.
Grouper is in abundance here as well but you can fish them on what I consider off months and cobia move through pretty quickly during their migration.
I look at reef fish as a bonus not a targeted specie.
Thank god we have a good tuna fishery which im sure will start getting regulated and hit us like a ton of bricks one day.
Believe me knowing all this Im asking myself what in the world was I thinking leasing to own a boat like the Big E? My thoughts from the very beginning were alternative when it came to generating income with her like it's priority charter being caged shark diving and river tours.
I have no choice to fish the boat in hopes of keeping my head above water and wont see profits for some time.
With that said I have talked to the guys trying to get the EFP going and really dont have nothing against them. I think all of them are cool guys trying to survive due to the false scientific data we are all being spoon fed. It's a double edged sword. The rec guys lose the fish and the head boat guys lose their living. I want no part of who is right or wrong.
Maybe you or I dont like the approach as it seems to be an exclusive club that not all can join but the fact is that more than three quarters of the head boat industry has died and this is the last of the bunch trying to feed their family's. These guys generate money for the city,state,marina owners etc...
The true fact is there is enough fish out there that we all could enjoy but the folks running this job are overlooking or just dont know how abundant or not abundant our eco system really is.
My boat definitely qualifies due to it is going on your past documented catches and the Big E has solid books but to answer your question sir I am not going to peruse a EFP. Im going to do my own thing and hope I make it.
All this stress of this boat and fish regulations are really bogging me down so tomorrow im heading out with some scientist that want me to do some Scalloped Hammerhead video/photo and a long time spear buddy to take my frustrations out on a couple tuna fish by way of cold hard steel.
Will post a report and some rodeo special's for the summer.
Wow gotta love rodnreel. Had a call in record time about my post on the mosquito fleet fishing extravaganza. Yes it will be all inclusive. Not sure on the price per man yet but will let you know as soon as me and Wildlife Enforcement iron out any details. So far from the info I have received from them this is a go as long as i anchor or moor in federal waters and have two captains aboard the Big E to keep two day limits should our clients meet that quota.
At last I can say we are good to go on the Big E. Since December I have been working hard on getting the boat ready. Just this week not only did I pass Coast Guard inspections but the Coast Guard has asked to use The Big E for training courses for the recruiting inspectors. They said without a doubt they have never had a boat of this caliber to train with. Their first class will be this Wednesday.
I honestly thought I would have been pushing trips months ago and am behind the eight ball but it is what it is.
The first trip will be May 18 and for the first time in history am receiving calls every day asking "why have you not ran my credit card.
The answer is I wanted to make sure that Coast Guard and the building of the dock in Empire would be on time to justify running the trip.
Owner of Delta Marina Darren Angelo has been a champ and has done everything he can to get us rolling. I have come full circle being that I have fished and dove out of every Marina from Fort Morgan Alabama to Matagorda TX. for years.
Empire is very sentimental to me for two reasons. One being that I went on my first offshore trip which was an overnight on the Early Bird at age eight. I almost knew at that time I would be a fisherman for life. My dad and his crew religiously fished that boat out of that marina until the untimely death of Capt. Stanley Coulon. The trips on that boat and the Cougar are imbedded in my heart.
The second reason was the chance to meet my idol/icon Capt. Stanley Coulon. I loved his coonass ways and his coonass accent.As a kid and through my teenage days my respect only grew for him because he was the salt of the Gulf to me. I was very fortunate to have the chance to fish with this man and to think that I am going to be docking and walking in his path are huge shoes to fill.
Some of my better buddies are in their seventies,eighty's and nineties. I have never taken anything they taught me for granted over my almost thirty years playing in the gulf.
I have much in store for my new boat and have hired some alternative booking agencies to assist in chartering a unique group of tours so i can concentrate on killing fish with you guys.
Big Easy Shark Safari will be taken over by a company that books caged shark diving tours in South Africa,Bahamas, West Coast etc... and offering them the only caged shark diving tours of this caliber. They along with I are excited due to this hidden gem called the Gulf of Mexico when it comes to sharks. We have a couple research trips already booked and am open to any university/lab that wants to spend plenty time in comfort gathering data on any specie of fish or oil rigs for that matter.
Big Easy River Tours will be a southern river tour where tourist and civil war buffs visiting the city can get a river view of passing through the locks, Ft. St. Phillips, Fort Jackson, Bohemia State Wildlife Management Area,the hustle and bustle of old man river via the shipping and fishing industry with the gorgeous back drop that we call Sportsman's Paradise. After the tour plans are to stop at the beautiful Woodland Plantation's for a great early dinner while touring the grounds,feeding gators and learning about the Plantation that was the label on Southern Comfort Whiskey bottle for seventy five years.
With these out sourced booking agents I can concentrate on fishing the boat.As you can see these other tours dont reflect the fishing calendar but am ready to kick it in high gear.
May 18 trip for example I will be sending out a email tomorrow to the customers booked already to see if they would like to leave the dock at 2:00 pm on Friday the 18'th. Plans are to bottom fish all day heading to the tuna grounds,fishing all night for tuna, fishing all day the next day for bottom fish and then again fishing tuna the following night and returning to delta Marina around 10:00. Basically fish till you drop.When you have to drop you can lay your head in your private bunk in "COLD" air condition. I still have openings for the maiden voyage so if you want to take a ride on the baddest fishing boat in the Gulf give me a call.
On this trip you have the ability to keep a two day limit and I have been working closely with LA Wildlife Enforcement on all my questions I have for them which leads me to the next idea I have for another ultimate fishing experience.
It's in the works and not locked down yet but here it goes.Im wanting to offer a three day fishing extravaganza via the mosquito fleet that Plaquemines Parish is so well know for.
Picture this.... You arrive at Delta Marina and board your captains boat. You fish all day to later that afternoon board The Big E offshore for a hot meal, a hot shower and some TV or more fishing if you want from her deck.
When your finished doing whatever it is you feel like doing retire to you bunk.
When you wake up your guide and you are already in the gulf and on your way. Talk about beating the fleet. You then fish another full day and retreat back to the boat the second afternoon where we then unload your second days catch on the Big E. This time you stay aboard and enjoy the cruise back to the Delta Marina eating like a king while relaxing after a hot shower.
Day three you wake up and board your trout and red fish guides boat and off you go again. When you return you will have the amenities of the Big E or Delta Marina should you stay for dinner and enjoy some more relaxation.
I have the capabilities to refuel diesel/gas and fresh water hoses to clean the mosquito boats offshore. This offer is for any guide that wants to offer this to their clients as well. Our fleet on call is a 26,Glacier Bay,44 Tiara, 36 Yellowfin and 36 Twin Vee.
I will talk to enforcement once more tomorrow and if they see no problems with it I will have a link built for this excursion this week. Check for details!
Been very busy lately but have had a couple chances shark dive and tuna fish. The tuna fishing is off the charts and summer is here early.
The best trip I had lately was with my son yesterday as we fished a rodeo together. Look out boys he's only five but the best I have ever fished with.