Improve Your Wahoo Fishing Skills

Meet a Northeast Florida Wahoo Fishing Maestro.

Tim Altman hoists a large wahoo hanging off the coast of Jacksonville.

Jacksonville-based Saltwater Challenge captain Tim Altman is lagging behind at 20 knots. His trolling weights weigh 6 pounds. Its lures weigh 4 pounds. The giant wahoo is his target, and he’s very good at his game.

Tim targets wahoo year round, but December through April is his favorite season. “Let it get so cold that all the coastal water on the 28 fathom ledge is below 70 degrees and the large ledge that marks the start of the continental shelf will be magical,” Tim said. “Let the temperature get to 70 degrees on the beach and they’re likely to be anywhere.”

“Let the temperature get to 70 degrees on the beach and they’re likely to be anywhere.”

“I’ll let the technology tell me where to fish using the Roffs fishing satellite charts, and if I have to split the day, I’ll let the solunar tables tell me when,” he added.

Keep in mind that trolling at 20 knots for 8 hours covers an incredible 160 miles. Tim reiterates the importance of organizing your day.

“In fact, I have kept records of what time the wahoo is likely to bite in particular places. There is nothing like a school of blue runners to make me drag a spot. Apart from the obvious bait on the surface, we are moving from a proven bottom structure to a more extensive bottom structure. The anglers make the best new crew for me. Find me a big school of beeliners in 70 degree water and I’ll show you a big wahoo.

“Find me a big school of beeliners in 70 degree water and I’ll show you a big wahoo.”

High speed wahoo fishing requires specialized equipment. The goal is to keep your bait well below the surface at 20 knots. This requires a braid or line of Monel yarn. It also requires the best of swivels, crimps, friction buckles and other connections. Tim fishes a 130-pound braid at a weight of 36 to 96 ounces. It is also important to put yarn at each end of the weights as the wahoo often bites off the weight. Next is a 30 foot 300 pound mono leader to a large straight lure (usually a steel head), with a 900 pound cable between its two hooks. The goal is that your 80-pound curvy butt setup doesn’t have a weak spot that can’t withstand the violent collision of the wahoo and the 20-knot decoy.

C&H Mr. Big, typical high speed lure.

Asking Tim why he thought he caught more wahoo at 20 knots was a laughing matter. “We don’t catch wahoo anymore. We just avoid more amberjack, barracuda and other fish. We had some big mahi hits at 20 knots at times, but that’s rare. Look, if you shoot mullet or ballhoo at the places we fish, you’ll stay plugged in until you run out of leaders. Don’t look for a lot of giant wahoo in your catch. ”

Tim says his team are doing better than most when it comes to the end of the game.

Getting the hooks to stay in a wahoo’s mouth after it hits it at 20 knots is the hardest part.

“Getting stung is the easy part. Getting the hooks to stay in a wahoo’s mouth after it hits it at 20 knots is the hardest part. First of all, don’t slow down too much. Imagine his mouth is torn and you have to keep the hook from falling. This means that you have to bring him in regularly and always under pressure. ” FS

First publication of Florida Sportsman magazine in April 2018

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Meet the world’s first carbon neutral fly fishing guide

For Kyle Shaefer of Kittery, protecting the environment is as important as catching fish.

Meet the world’s first carbon neutral fly fishing guide

For Kyle Shaefer of Kittery, protecting the environment is as important as catching fish.

Photograph by Joe Klementovich
By Katherine Englishman

Issue: September 2021

Captain Kyle Schaefer’s world is more like a galaxy. Founder of Soul Fly Outfitters in Kittery and the recently opened Soul Fly Lodge in the Berry Islands of the Bahamas, Schaefer is a fly fishing guide, writer, environmentalist and entrepreneur. Most notably, he became the first fly fishing guide in the world to become carbon neutral; over the past two years, his company has offset as much carbon dioxide as it emitted into the atmosphere.

On a record-breaking Monday morning in Kittery, I stood barefoot on the deck of the SW 16 Skiff de Schaefer, the Laney, as he patiently coaches me in my first attempts to throw a fly fishing rod in the hopes of snagging one of the area’s most prized striped bass. Schaefer is an encouraging, calm and observant guide. However, his placid air does not hide his passion for fly fishing, especially for these fish from the North Atlantic.

Captain Kyle Schaefer stands on the deck of his skiff, the Laney, sight fishing for striped bass in the brackish waters of the mouth of the Piscataqua River at Kittery Point.
Captain Kyle Schaefer stands on the deck of his skiff, the Laney, sight fishing for striped bass in the brackish waters of the mouth of the Piscataqua River at Kittery Point.

The boat rocks when the winds turn, blowing the line opposite to where I want it to go. I overcompensate and force him forward with sharp, jerky movements rather than following Schaefer’s instructions to maintain a fluid motion that transmits energy from my arm to the rod. Simple, but not easy. Noticing the disconnection, Schaefer stops me for a moment and says, “I’m not using this example with everyone, but while you’re launching, consider extending it. You know how the universe is always expanding, and so is your line. Something in this metaphysical metaphor helps everything click, and all of a sudden, the decoy descends 30 feet into the soft, rippling blue water. “Soft!” exclaims Schaefer. He has a big smile on his face.

As a conservationist and outdoor enthusiast, Schaefer has a sense of connectedness that goes far beyond guiding, though sharing his passion and purpose is both heartbeat and the connective tissue of his mission at Soul Fly. Asked about the meaning of the name, he replies, “Soul Fly embodies the idea that this is a moving activity.” there is no doubt. It doesn’t take long to realize that learning to fly fishing with Schaefer isn’t just about dropping a line and hooking a big one; it’s a lesson in what it means to be a small part of a large and complex ecosystem that hangs in a delicate balance – a role that, in Schaefer’s world, is crucial in preventing it from all shattering. ‘collapse.

Schaefer has the ability to tackle complex problems easily. As a board member of the American Saltwater Guides Association (ASGA), an organization dedicated to sustainable marine businesses and conservation, he has long been an advocate for the environment. He lobbied Washington DC to create stricter federal fishing laws and allow his clients to become responsible anglers.

Kyle Schaefer accompanies the writer in her first attempts to throw with the fly.
Schaefer trains the writer through his first attempts to throw a fly.

In 2019, through a friend of a friend, Schaefer got wind of like-minded business owners in the fishing industry who were going carbon neutral. “I got great insight into its value, how it’s part of the solution and it might not be very difficult,” Schaefer explains. So he joined the Fly Fishing Climate Alliance, a group of business owners and guides who are all committed to being carbon neutral by 2030. With the help of Emerging Strategies, a consulting firm in a sustainable business, he became the world’s first climate neutral fly fisherman. guide in 2020.

He explains the carbon neutral process with the clarity of his signature: “It really comes down to three things: quantify, reduce and compensate,” says Schaefer. “You need to look at your carbon footprint and take inventory of the greenhouse gases your business emits. From there you look at what you can reduce. What you cannot reduce, you offset with revolving credits. Schaefer maintains a low carbon footprint by reducing energy consumption and eliminating single-use plastic, among other environmentally friendly practices. In 2020, his company reported 12.1 tonnes of carbon emissions, which is lower than the 16 to 20 tonnes the average American emits per year. To be transparent, it details its carbon emissions report in a blog post on its website.

Carefully release a striped bass into the water.  Maine regulations require that a striped bass measure between 28 and 35 inches in length from the lower jaw to the tip of the tail to be a keeper.
Carefully release a striped bass into the water. Maine regulations require that a striped bass measure between 28 and 35 inches in length from the lower jaw to the tip of the tail to be a keeper.

As a company, Soul Fly has hired experts to go carbon neutral, but Schaefer says anyone can calculate their carbon footprint through online resources – there’s one from climate advocacy group Protect. Our Winters, and another from Nature Conservancy, for example. “It’s really affordable. In the past two years, I haven’t spent more than $ 300 on revolving credits. For context, my ride from Scarborough to Kittery and back in a Subaru Crosstrek would only cost me $ 1.80 to $ 2.40 in revolving credits, depending on the offsets I purchased. (The cost of carbon fluctuates depending on political and economic factors.) Schaefer buys carbon offsets from Cool Effect, a non-profit organization that funds carbon dioxide reduction projects around the world. Its carbon offset purchases fund a project in Colorado that preserves native grasslands from agricultural development; grasses absorb greenhouse gases. “Choose these offsets wisely,” Schaefer explains, “because that’s the essence of what we do. This money must finance a project that makes sense.

While his job is to teach others how to catch fish, Schaefer’s lessons are also a gateway to learning how to protect these natural resources. This is more important than ever, especially in the Gulf of Maine, where the waters are warming faster than anywhere else in the world, threatening to alter the migratory patterns of striped bass, among other fish, and disrupt the health of any. marine life. . However, there is room for improvement all around. There is an incredibly high mortality rate caused by recreational fishermen fishing for striped bass. The most recent Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission striped bass stock assessment in 2019 estimated that 3.4 million striped bass unintentionally die from improper handling, even during capture and release. ‘water. As a result, many guides have taken up the principles of a movement called Keep Fish Wet, a fishing community like Schaefer, which promotes scientific practices for successful capture and release.

All of this motivates Schaefer to make changes that are both personal, such as reducing and offsetting carbon emissions, and universal. “I’m trying to make it magnetic,” Schaefer says. “It’s a more holistic and sustainable approach to keep doing what we want to keep doing. ” It works. Last April, it saw more than 3,000 anglers (a historic number), including some of its guide clients, take direct action to demand better legislation during the public comment period on the amendment to the Charter. striped bass fishery management plan. Their goal was to hold the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission, the group responsible for the management of fisheries resources, accountable for enabling unsustainable striped bass fishing; they also wanted the audience to make their voices heard. Collectively, they have created a ripple effect that continues to spread throughout the fishing community.

Kyle Schaefer untangles a line with a laugh and a smile.
Schaefer untangles a line with a laugh and a smile.

In a fun way, Schaefer shares the same traits he sees in his beloved striped bass – “resilient and opportunistic” – and wholeheartedly believes that things can and will change for the better as long as we can change our trajectory. Maybe that’s because he knows all too well that the exhilarating sensation of catching a fish is enough to get anyone hooked. It’s a time to become one with the wild elements that surround us and that cannot be recreated without everything being in its place. To put it fleetingly, as Schaefer might do, catching a fish feels like a time when all the stars align.

Click here to read more stories from Katherine Englishman

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No Fishing Skills Required For New Seafood Cookbook | Books and Authors

MINNEAPOLIS – A career as a political journalist led Hank Shaw to five newspapers across the country, including, in the early 2000s, the St. Paul Pioneer Press.

His subsequent work as a gatherer, hunter, fisherman, and cookbook author has taken him across the world. He launched his award-winning James Beard blog, Hunter Angler Gardener Cook (, in 2007, and his first cookbook debuted four years later. Shaw has just released its fifth title, “Hook, Line, and Supper” (H&H Books, $ 32.95), a user-friendly guide to preparing a wide variety of fish and seafood.

Now living in Sacramento, Calif., Shaw recently visited the Twin Cities and, in conversation, shared rock-solid gripping technique, explained the concept of interchangeability, and discussed the joys of fishing.

Q: Why do you recommend fishing as a hobby?

A: Because it’s the easiest way for what I would call a civilian to enter the world of securing their own protein. Hunting is difficult, there are a lot of obstacles in the hunt. But fishing? You can buy a day’s permit, get on a boat, and have your friend – or a guide or captain – show you what to do, and you can catch your own fish.

It is a universal truth that the food you buy yourself tastes better. Anyone who has ever grown tomatoes knows this.

Q: What is your advice for the first fishing trips?

A: Use bait on the lures. Baits will catch more fish than lures.

Q: What was your goal when you wrote this book?

A: To break down the barriers. When my duck book (“Duck, Duck, Goose”) came out in 2013, my evangelical goal was to teach people how to cook a duck breast well. In this book, my Gospel goal is to teach people how to cook a piece of fish well.

Q: How about a quick tutorial?

A: There are several ways to do this. There is the trigger method. Once you’ve learned how, you can do it in eight to 10 minutes.

You salted your piece of fish and wiped it dry. The pan gets hot, then you use a very high smoke point oil. I like grape seeds, but canola works too. Then the oil gets hot. When that oil has a trickle of smoke the fish goes into the pan, and the second it goes in you shake the pan, it’s almost a shake. The piece of fish will slide over this hot oil for a second, preventing it from cementing in the pan.

Then you invert the pan and pour the hot oil over the fish until the fish turns opaque. As soon as the side of the fish that touches the pan turns that nice pretty brown – you can see it around the edges – then you put in a knob of butter. You spill this over the fish and when the butter turns brown, you remove it from the heat. You flip the fish – crispy side up – add a little pepper and you’re done.

Q: You write a lot about the interchangeability of fish. What do you mean?

A: There are broad categories of fish and seafood that can be grouped together. For example, the vast majority of freshwater fish are lean and white, and they all act the same. Of course, there are functional differences between walleye and smallmouth bass, but you can swap them out in a recipe, that’s all good.

The differences exist but they are not that critical. I have a recipe in the book that sounds esoteric, but it’s not. This is for the Thai-style fried pomfret, a fish that can be found in the Pacific Ocean. But what if you used it with walleye instead of pomfret? It would still be a good recipe. How about using it with catfish or shrimp? It would still be a good recipe.

There are very few recipes that can’t literally use everything that looks good in the supermarket.

Q: For those of us who don’t catch fish, do you have any tips for buying fish?

A: It’s a bit counterintuitive, because in the supermarket you want to go straight to the freezer section, because they buy frozen fish and thaw it for their counter. It’s better for you to thaw the fish than for them to thaw the fish, because they could have thawed it three, four, or five days ago.

Q: The more than 120 recipes in the book take a holistic approach, a strategy that is obviously rooted in your own experiences. Why is travel important to you?

A: Because everyone does things differently, even in our own country. Traveling in the United States really shows you that there are amazing things about every state. Too many Americans think their little patch of woods is the only good place, and that the people across the hill somehow aren’t real Americans, or have a bad taste for fish. . Soup wars are real.

Q: When it comes to making chowders, stews and soups, is there a common mistake?

A: The biggest thing is to put everything in the pot at the same time. Period. I have a really long section in the book on how to make a good fish or seafood stew.

Q: Do you have any initial ideas for preparing fish and seafood?

A: If there’s one cooking tip I can give to anyone, it’s this: For God’s sake, you can always cook it more, but you can’t undo something. If you are afraid, if you are new, if you are afraid of ruining something, then don’t cook it enough. You test it and then if you need it you can cook it more. Don’t kill your seafood twice.


For 8.

Note: no perch? “Use any firm white fish,” said Hank Shaw, author of “Hook, Line, and Supper.”

3 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 large yellow or white onion, chopped (about 2 cups)

1 1/2 pounds Yukon Gold or other waxy potatoes, peeled and diced

1 liter of fish or clam broth

2 cups of water

1/2 teaspoon freshly chopped marjoram

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 1/2 pounds skinless perch fillets, cut into pieces

6 to 8 ounces of Polish kielbasa, sliced

1/4 cup freshly chopped dill or flat leaf parsley

1 cup sour cream, for garnish

Melt the butter in a Dutch oven or other heavy saucepan over medium heat. When the butter stops frothing, add the onions and cook gently until tender and translucent; do not let them brown.

Add the potatoes and toss to coat them in the butter. Cook 1 to 2 minutes for the butter to absorb a little. Sprinkle everything with salt. Add the fish stock, water and marjoram, season with salt and pepper. Simmer gently for about 20 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender.

Once the potatoes are tender, add the perch and kielbasa and simmer for another 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the dill (or parsley). Pour into bowls and let everyone add sour cream at the table. Serve with beer and crusty bread.

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Depletion of fishery resources worsens dispute between residents of Cameroon and Chad

Along the Logone River, shared by Cameroon and Chad, fishermen practice artisanal fishing.

The inhabitants of here live mainly from fishing, a resource which is becoming increasingly scarce.

After six hours of fishing, Ahmadou Baba, a Chadian fisherman, returns to the banks of the river with few catches.

“When I was a kid, you could just fish with hooks. Now people go from afar like Oussi in Leena over there, to fish. Before, when we went out like that, women even came here, and they could have fish. Now there are no more fish there, ”Ahmadou said.

The scarcity of fishery resources has become a source of tension between the two communities, who accuse each other of using unsuitable fishing gear. They claim that some fishing nets are extremely extensive and large.

“Our studies show that there are several + problems. Cohabitation is a problem, access to fishery resources is becoming scarce. In addition to being rare, fishing practices are gradually becoming illegal with the use of unsuitable fishing gear, which is suitable for fishing. People are now experiencing low catches and there is also a resurgence of conflicts ”, a said Armel Mewouth, coordinator of the bridge project at the Lake Chad Basin Commission.

Faced with these various conflicts, the Cameroonian and Chadian authorities, within the Lake Chad Basin Commission, met in Bongor, a Chadian border town located two kilometers from the Cameroonian town of Yagoua.

Meetings were held with local residents, especially fishermen. Authorities in both countries called on fishermen to calm down and live together.

“You could say that there are resources, only that people do not respect environmental sustainability, because we are still signing an order banning fishing from July 1 to September 30. So, it’s three months and it’s this period that we called biological rest, to allow the fish to reproduce. And there are people who cheat at night, they go fishing “, revealed Manou Diguir, a commissioner.

The commission further recommended that those who live along the Logone River also practice agriculture so as not to deplete fishery resources.

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