17 months ago was the last time that the Gulfstar fished on leviathan ledge, we were hitting it pretty hard in 2016 and because the fishing on the ledge was lack luster to put it mildly we decided to only do a few trips in 2017 All three of the trips were horrible so we yanked them off the 2017 schedule to wait it out a while and let the fish fill back in and put some weight on.
Fast forward to this past Friday the Gulfstar departed the dock at noon and steamed all night long out to the ledge. Waiting for sun to get a bit higher in the sky around 8 am we made a drift a few miles inshore in 800 feet and caught one big Snowy grouper. In the really deep water it seems to help when the sun is high in the sky. Moving out to leviathan ledge in 1250-1325 feet of water the Golden Tile, Barrel fish, Rose fish and Leviathan snapper started biting right away. It was a steady pick for a couple hours the around 11am with the sun high the fish really turned on and it was just about as good as it can get until about 4pm. With the sun getting lower the bite slowed down but we still picked at them until dark. The tally for the day was pretty impressive. We had 1 Big Snowy, a bunch of Tilefish up to around 35 lbs. We also had 20-25 pretty big Leviathan snapper along with some Barrel fish and Rose fish. Keep in mind that 9 anglers put all that meat in the box just on day 1.
Some anglers fished for Swordfish at night but I guess putting a sword on deck wasn’t in mother nature’s plan for us.
Captain James had something on his mind that night after dinner. Having a few minutes to collect his thoughts about the day’s events he wondered about that Snowy grouper they caught early in the morning. It was a pretty big grouper and it was on a little break that we ran over last year but never fished. What if that break gets bigger to the North or south? What if there were more of those big Snowy’s on that small piece? It was pretty early in the day, maybe we should have made a second drift?
The next morning he decided to go have a look at that area again. Almost back to the spot he ran over another little break in 750 feet of water and it had a good show of fish on the deep side. With excitement he slammed on the breaks and set up for a drift. Well it was game on…. The Snowy grouper were home and they were hungry. The drift was to the East so the grouper hiding on the deeper side of the break had first crack at the baits and if you missed the grouper, the Grey Tilefish were on top also eager to bite. If you were really lucky you would get a couple grouper and then finish the drift off with a Tilefish. Captain James worked up and down the break and it had fish all over it. They fished until 7 pm having to leave them biting as it was a long ride to get back home.
On the balance beam the Jackpot Snowy was close to 40 pounds and the largest Tilefish was just about the same. It was a fantastic trip and its super rewarding when you find a new spot that really produces great memories for our customers and us.
Because of this fantastic find and the return of great fishing on Leviathan ledge and the fact that we don’t have any more leviathan ledge trips planned for a whole year we are adding a special trip right away. We want to get back on those big Tiles and Grouper while the weather is still good. We have added a trip departing Friday Oct 5th and returning on Monday Oct 8 Columbus day.
Google review of this trip
Went on a second 3 day deep drop trip, had the best time ever. Food was great, boat was clean and comfortable, fishing was excellent. The whole crew was super experienced, helpful and friendly. Special thanks to captain James for putting us on massive golden tile and snowy grouper, captain Eric for trolling advice and CJ for helping us with everything.