Mayport Inlet Monster Black Drum

This has definitely been a December for the books. With little, to no bad days on the water and so much variety to be had, it's been a great month. This has easily been the best Black Drum fishing I've seen in years. We've had some very consistent trips with multiple limits of perfect sized Black Drum ranging from 20-27 inches and fat.

One trip in particular, my good friend Rob Chapman, Owner and proprietor of "Outdoors360" came over from the gulf to play catch-up. We made wakes for the Inlet at around 9am and anchored up. The "plan" was to set up a 4 rod spread of Blue Crab rods and go from there. The fish had other plans. Instead, we managed to barely keep up with a 2 rod spread and stayed doubled up with Black Drum and Red Fish for the next 4 hours. The other 2 rods never made it down from the T-Top. In less than half that time, we had our 3 man limit of Black Drum in the live well all crammed together like Sardines. We released another 30 or so after wrapping up our boat limit as well as several others that were over 24 inches in the process of limiting out. Rob and his buddy Jonathan had no idea what was in store for them. I told him the bite had been epic prior to coming over but, everyone has a different idea of what an epic bite is. He thought we might pull off a limit after a long day of work but the reality was around 60 Black Drum and another 15 or so Reds. All caught between 9am and 2:00pm. That my friends, is an epic bite.

So where, when and how? The answer is simple, the deep 70 foot trough inside the tip of the north row. Everyone at one point or another has passed the rectangular canyon of deep water just as they passed the jetty tips. Both the North and South rows have one. except the South row's is deeper, at around 85 feet deep. Both sides hold Drum, albeit, there are less in the south trough. There are a number of very subtle differences all along the North trough that you learn about with time on the water. My advice, watch your bottom machine and if your new to graphing an area with your bottom machine, hit Youtube and watch some tutorials. A good sonar is invaluable in locating drop-offs. The Inlet, especially the North Trough, is an awesome place to utilize Side Imaging as well. I don't have this feature on my boat but, based on what I know is down there, the feature would make locating the spread out rubble piles a breeze to locate and mark. I've learned over the years where these places are from losing countless rigs and anchors in them. There's no experience like hands on experience but if I could choose between doing it the hard way and getting a high quality bottom machine, I would save myself the headache and go with the right plotter for the job. I have a number of big upgrades going into the boat next week and my nerves can't wait, let me tell you.....

Get after em fellas and I hope everyone had a good Holiday.



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