Coastal Angler Magazine - June / Pensacola-Destin-Emerald Coast

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PENSACOLA/DESTIN/EMERALD COAST EDITION

&

Boats Motors Edition

VOLUME 22 • ISSUE 268

Local

Fishing Reports Catch Photos News & Events

COASTALANGLERMAG.COM

F R A N C H I S E

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O P P O R T U N I T I E S

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JUNE 2017

W O R L D W I D E

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YOU’RE GONNA NEED A BIGGER BOAT. THIS ONE.

Introducing the Element F21: As low as $25,499* Our largest center console to date, we designed the new Element F21 to be three things; fishable, versatile and affordable. We started with our proven M-Hull™ design, giving it a deeper entry for even more seaworthiness. Then we gave it the features anglers demand to make sure it was serious about catching fish—plus options should you choose to expand your activities. Its most attractive feature could be its price. Shop if you must… we’re pretty sure you’ll end up here. Go to bayliner.com to learn more.

©2016 Bayliner Boats. All rights reserved.

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*All prices reflect MSRP in US dollars and apply to the US only. Dealer sets the actual price. Pricing does not include dealer preparation fees, taxes, registration fees, or other fees that may apply. Freight not included. Customers outside US must contact their local dealer to obtain applicable pricing.

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© 2017 Garmin Ltd. or its subsidiaries

THIS SEEMS TO BE THE PLACE WHERE ALL THE FISH HANG OUT. I THINK I’LL DROP IN.

12”

PROGRAMMABLE

HOT KEYS

PRELOADED

BUILT-IN

BLUECHART® G2 + LAKEVUU¨ HD CHIRP SONAR + CLEARVUU¨ + SIDEVU¨

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© 2017 Garmin Ltd. or its subsidiaries

Ben Martin

Editor In Chief Coastal Angler/The Angler Magazine

EDITOR IN CHIEF : Ben Martin • camads@coastalanglermagazine.com VICE PRESIDENT : Tracy Patterson • tracy@coastalanglermagazine.com ART DIRECTOR : Rebecca Snowden • graphics@coastalanglermagazine.com EDITOR : Nick Carter • editorial@coastalanglermagazine.com WEBMASTER : Dmitriy Pislyagin • webmaster@coastalanglermagazine.com

Dear Readers, This edition of the magaine that you are reading is put together by our local franchisee co-publisher. Your co-publisher’s contact information is shown in the directory adjacent to this article. We currently publish 38 separate editions of this magazine each month throughout the Continental United States, the Bahamas and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Our plan is to continue growing and to continue adding locations. If you love the outdoors and have ever considered owning your own business, you owe it to yourself to take a look at our franchise opportunities. Our franchise publishing model will enable you to make money doing what you love, being involved in the outdoor/marine industry. You don’t need to have prior publishing experience. We train you on how to do that. What you do need is a love of the outdoors and a somewhat adventurous spirit. Opening a new business is exciting and, yes, it requires hard work and commitment. But, once you bring this magazine to your community you will find it to be very rewarding and you will have created one of the best jobs and career opportunities that any angler could ever imagine. If you’re like us, owning your own fishing magazine may be an opportunity for you to be involved in an industry that you’re passionate about. Imagine never dreading to go to work but rather being excited about sharing the message of your magazine. Our ideal strategic growth would have franchise opportunities in the following locations, however, we have found that nearly any area that has an avid fishing community can be a good location for it’s own fishing magazine. GULF COAST (Available Now) • Baton Rouge, LA • Lafayette, LA • Corpus Christi, TX • Austin, TX • Mississippi FLORIDA • Okeechobee, FL

SOUTHEAST (Launch March 2017) • Raleigh, NC • Savannah, GA • Southwest Georgia • Hilton Head, SC • Columbia, SC • Myrtle Beach, SC

Come Join our Team!

NEW ENGLAND • New Hampshire (the entire state) • Maine (the entire state) • Western Massachusetts • Gloucester, MA • Cape Cod, MA GREAT LAKES • Milwaukee, WI • Detroit, MI • Cleveland, OH • The Adirondacks, NY

ADVERTISING INQUIRIES: Corporate Headquarters info@coastalanglermagazine.com • 888-800-9794

FLORIDA

BIG BEND : Mike McNamara • (850) 510-7919 • captmike@coastalanglermagazine.com BREVARD : David String • (321) 684-5888 • dstring@coastalanglermagazine.com DAYTONA/NEW SMYRNA BEACH : Don Meadows • (321) 436-5895 • donm@coastalanglermagazine.com FLORIDA KEYS : Cliff Lumpkin • (305) 849-9093 • cliff@coastalanglermagazine.com FORT LAUDERDALE : Gene Dyer • (954) 680-3900 • gene@coastalanglermagazine.com FORT MYERS : Nadeen Welch • (239) 595-8265 • nwelch@coastalanglermagazine.com GREATER MIAMI : Scott Deal • (561) 945-6999 • scott@coastalanglermagazine.com Monica Isaza-Deal • (561) 945-8899 • monica@coastalanglermagazine.com GREATER ORLANDO : Phillip & Giselle Wolf • (407) 790-9515 • phillip@coastalanglermagazine.com LAKELAND & SUMTER : Mary Brasher • (352) 598-4219 • maryf@coastalanglermagazine.com NAPLES : Nadeen Welch • (239) 595-8265 • nwelch@coastalanglermagazine.com NC FLORIDA/NATURE COAST : Cary & Lynn Crutchfield • (352) 372-4237 • crutch@coastalanglermagazine.com NE FLORIDA : Danny Patrick • (904) 742-4696 • danny@coastalanglermagazine.com PANAMA CITY/FORGOTTEN COAST : Randy Cnota • (229) 834-7880 • randyc@coastalanglermagazine.com PALM BEACH COUNTY : Barbara Ryan • (561) 373-8040 • barbara@coastalanglermagazine.com SARASOTA : Phil Prevoir • (239) 257-4684 • pprevoir@coastalanglermagazine.com TAMPA BAY : Chuck Atkins • (239) 464-5153 • chuck@coastalanglermagazine.com TREASURE COAST : Misti & Gary Guertin • (772) 285-6850 • treasurecoast@coastalanglermagazine.com flahama@coastalanglermagazine.com

SOUTHEAST

ATLANTA/SW GEORGIA : Bob & Brenda Rice • (706) 614-8231 • bobr@theanglermagazine.com CHARLESTON : Jane A. Redden • (205) 725-9616 • jane@coastalanglermagazine.com Sam Buckareff • (843) 607-8629 • sam@coastalanglermagazine.com CHARLOTTE : Mark & Haley Alberghini • (704) 651-1934 • mark@coastalanglermagazine.com MYRTLE BEACH : Kenneth & Ana Moore • (843) 446-5777 • kenmoore@coastalanglermagazine.com TIDEWATER/OUTER BANKS : John Tiger • (757) 707-9654 • john.tiger@coastalanglermagazine.com Laura Seitz • (757) 707-9655 • laura@coastalanglermagazine.com SE & COASTAL GEORGIA : Tony Martin • (912) 269-9679 • tony@coastalanglermagazine.com Travis Harper • (912) 266-1430• travis@coastalanglermagazine.com UPSTATE SOUTH CAROLINA : Gregg Thompson • (864) 542-3112 • gregg@theanglermagazine.com WESTERN NC : Debra & Joe Woody • (828) 775-9663 • woody@theanglermagazine.com WILMINGTON/MOREHEAD : Kenny Ritter • (910) 550-9094 • kenny@theanglermagazine.com

NORTHEAST BOSTON : George Regan • (617) 488-2842 • boston@coastalanglermagazine.com LONG ISLAND : Lisa & Michael Danforth • (203) 321-7635 • lisad@coastalanglermagazine.com CONNECTICUT / RHODE ISLAND : Lisa & Michael Danforth • (203) 321-7635 lisad@coastalanglermagazine.com

GULF COAST

GALVESTON/MATAGORDA/UPPER COAST : Chanci & David Mowry • (713) 446-7395 • chancim@coastalanglermagazine.com • davidm@coastalanglermagazine.com MISSISSIPPI GULF COAST : Kevin Ogle • (850) 586-3474 • gulf@coastalanglermagazine.com NEW ORLEANS : Dr. Dave Dunaway • (225) 400-8156 • nola@coastalanglermagazine.com PENSACOLA/EMERALD COAST : Kevin Ogle • (850) 586-3474 • gulf@coastalanglermagazine.com

GREAT LAKES

UPSTATE NEW YORK : Frank Geremski • (518) 898-6484 • frankie@theanglermagazine.com WEST MICHIGAN : Phil Belsito • (616) 957-1714 • phil@theanglermagazine.com

INTERNATIONAL BAHAMAS : Misti & Gary Guertin • (772) 285-6850 • treasurecoast@coastalanglermagazine.com flahama@coastalanglermagazine.com PUERTO RICO/VIRGIN ISLANDS : Ace Bassue • (407) 285-9453 • ace@coastalanglermagazine.com © 2017. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the written consent of the publisher. Disclaimer: Coastal Angler Magazine / The Angler Magazine will not be held liable for injuries incurred while partaking in activities described herein, or for claims made against products or services provided by advertisers.

COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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HondaM


Destination Honda

For destinations found on a map, or ones that are simply a state of mind, trust a reliable Honda outboard to get you there. And back. Find out more at ca.hondamarine.com.

3.99% APR Financing On All New Honda Outboards! Ends July 6, 2017. *

APR

FINANCING*

*APR financing available on all new Honda outboard engines through American Honda Finance Corporation upon approved credit. 3.99% APR financing for 24 – 48 months, available to customers who qualify for AHFC credit tier 1. Example for new Honda outboard engines: 3.99% APR for 36 months financing at $29.52 a month for every $1,000 financed. 4.99% APR for 60 months financing at $18.87 a month for every $1,000 financed. 4.99% APR for 84 months financing at $14.13 a month for every $1,000 financed. Offer good on any new and unregistered Honda outboard engine, with a minimum amount financed of $1,000 and a minimum monthly payment of $100. Check with participating dealers for complete details. Dealers set actual sales prices. For well-qualified buyers, not all buyers may qualify. Higher rates apply for different terms and/ or buyers with lower credit rating. Lower rates may also be available. Offer valid through 07/06/17, on new and unregistered Honda outboard engines (2hp – 250hp) and only on approved credit by Honda Financial Services through participating dealers. Honda Financial Services’ standard credit criteria apply. © 2017 American Honda Motor Co., Inc. COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM I JUNE 2017 I NATIONAL 7 Always wear a personal flotation device while boating and read your owner’s manual. All Honda outboards meet EPA and CARB emission levels.

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MOTOR REVIEW Honda Marine Debuts New

BF4, BF5 and BF6 4-stroke Engines

Portability, performance and reliability are the hallmarks of Honda Marine’s new and redesigned portable engine models, the BF4, BF5 and BF6 4-stroke outboards. Honda Marine debuts new engines with the BF4 and BF6 models, and redesigns the legendary BF5 models. Packed with the latest technology from Honda, the 127cc 4-stroke, single cylinder engines offer boaters the choice of four horsepower (BF4), five horsepower (BF5) or six horsepower (BF6). All three new engines are available with either a short (15 inch/38 cm) or long (20 inch/51 cm) shaft. “The new Honda BF4, BF5 and BF6 engines are easy to start, easy to stop and easy to carry. The new four-stroke Honda Marine engines are best-in-class performers. They are the right size for the right purpose,” said Mark DiPietro, senior manager, Honda Marine. “The new Honda BF4, BF5 and BF6 marine engines feature a new internal fuel tank and new motor mounts to run quietly and smoothly, while delivering the longest continuous running time.”

The new Honda Marine BF4, BF5 and BF6 engines provide consumers four main features—portability, performance, reliability and comfort. Portability A combination of light weight (roughly 60 pounds) and new carrying handle design make the Honda BF4, BF5 and BF6 marine engines easy to transport and store. The tiller handle fully folds out of the way, making storage options even more convenient. Performance The engines integrate a 1.5-liter, large capacity internal fuel tank, which delivers the longest continuous running time in their class—more than 40 minutes at wide-open throttle. In addition, the Honda BF5 and BF6 4-stroke engines can be connected to an external fuel tank for longer journeys. Consumers have the choice of an additional three different propeller options for the style that best fits their boating. Reliability Honda Marine’s new BF4, BF5 and BF6 models share the same, proven onecylinder, 127 cubic centimeter engine block and benefit from Honda’s 4-stroke engine technology. In case of an oil pressure drop, a new, low-oil alert system will automatically limit the engine speed to 2,300 rpm to protect the engine. Comfort The new Honda BF4, BF5 and BF6 portable engines feature a host of new technologies and features that consumers will appreciate. • A new decompression mechanism helps make all three new Honda Marine engines easy to pull start, regardless of the engine temperature. • One-push stop switch serves to shut down the engine with no chance of the engine re-starting. • The Honda Marine BF4, BF5 and BF6 portable engines feature redesigned rubber motor mounts that reduce vibration in all rpm ranges and reduce engine noise. • The BF4, BF5 and BF6 are available with an optional charging system with a capacity of 6 Amps at 12 Volts to power consumer demands for electronic devices. With a starting U.S. manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) of $1,875, the BF4 is a compact, lightweight engine with excellent low- to mid-range power. The new Honda BF5 delivers new features and technology at a starting price of $2,025. The starting U.S. MSRP of the new Honda Marine BF6 is $2,150. For more information, see marine.honda.com.

Promotion Ends 6/30/2017

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Using a Smartphone Isn’t Always Smart On The Water Submitted by Sea Tow

P

eople rarely go anywhere on land without their smartphones anymore, and it has become increasingly common to see boaters using cell phones when they’re out on coastal and inland waters as well. That’s fine—as long as your boat is also equipped with a VHF radio, one of the most important pieces of safety equipment you can have on board. “Your cell phone could die or you could drop it overboard. We recommend people take a 5-watt handheld VHF along on their boat, at a minimum, to use as their primary form of communication on the water,” said Capt. Ed Schrader, owner of Sea Tow Hampton Roads, Va., which serves the busy waters of Hampton Roads, Virginia Beach and Chesapeake Bay. “It’s better to have a 25-watt VHF mounted at the helm, however.”

N AU T I C A L T E R M

Capt. Sammy Royal, owner of Sea Tow Horseshoe Beach, Fla., which covers a rural stretch of the Gulf Coast on Florida’s Panhandle from Waccasassa to Keaton Beach, said boaters can’t rely on their smartphones always “having bars” in his area. “Cell phone service is very limited here. There are small fishing villages along the coast that are nine or 10 miles apart with nothing in between,” he said − making it essential to have a VHF on board. Another important benefit to using a VHF radio rather than a cell phone is that if you ever find yourself needing assistance, more than one listener can hear and respond to your call for help. “With a VHF, you are able to communicate with more people quickly on the water. Whether it’s Sea Tow, the Coast Guard, or a nearby boater, everybody’s going to hear what you’ve got to say,” said Capt. Schrader, adding, “The USCG’s Rescue 21 System also has VHF direction-finding capabilities and can obtain a relatively good location as soon as you click your mic and place that distress call. This helps greatly if you do not know your location or don’t have time to provide it.” Of course, a VHF radio can’t help you in an emergency situation if it’s not working properly. Both Captains advise using Sea Tow’s free Automated Radio Check service to quickly and easily check that your boat’s VHF is in operational prior to setting out on the water. To use the service, simply tune the VHF to the local Automated Radio Check channel, key the mic, and request a radio check. You will hear an automated response and then the call will be played back to you, confirming that your VHF radio is working and allowing you to assess transmission strength, a crucial safety check. Sea Tow Horseshoe Beach offers the Automated Radio Check service on VHF channels 26 and 27. Sea Tow Hampton Roads provides the service on channel 28. To find the Sea Tow Automated Radio Check channel in your boating area, visit https://www.seatow. com/tools-and-education/automated-radio-check. For more on Sea Tow, an international marine assistance provider, go to www.seatow.com.

# 1 7 8

full ahead: How Sea Tow Captains operate 24/7.

Running out of fuel or a conked out engine can happen to anyone. That’s why you bought ® a Sea Tow membership. They’ve got the equipment, experience and know-how to get you home quickly & safely. $10 off a Sea Tow Membership. Discount Code: CNG 800-4-SEATOW \ seatow.com

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Boat Accessories Product Reviews AWLGRIP AWLCRAFT SE TOPCOAT With consistent technical innovation and stringent quality controls, Awlgrip’s line of topside finishing systems are the products all others are measured against. Those who take pride in the look of their vessels, whether they are dinghies or megayachts, trust in the superlative finishes provided by Awlgrip. Awlcraft SE is a revolutionary topcoat encompassing metallics, pearls and effect pigments and is fast drying with excellent opacity. It is designed to work as one layer of a multi-part system. The Awlcraft SE imparts the color and effect and is then top coated with a clear high-gloss finish topcoat to give gloss and protection. This combination forms a high-performance, high-gloss, durable topcoat system. Available for new custom or production builds, or refits, the Awlcraft SE range offers owners a great choice from more than 10,000 standard colors, as well as custom colors to match any color imaginable.

MILLENNIUM D-100 DECK CHAIR Millennium Marine has introduced the most weather resistant and durable deck chair on the market. The Millennium D-100 Deck Chair exemplifies the comfort, portability and durability Millennium has become known for. The D-100 is designed for portability and easy storage, and it is built with high strength, anodized aluminum. The anodized aluminum prevents corrosion, whether the D-100 is asked to perform under the rigorous conditions of saltwater or freshwater fishing. D-100 Deck Chairs are equipped with Millennium’s patented ComfortMax seat, which makes wet bottoms a thing of the past. They are made from a breathable fabric that won’t collect water. They are mold and mildew resistant, quick drying, and they will outlast any marine seat on the market. With 4 inches of height adjustment, and the capability to swivel 360 degrees, the D-100 Deck Chair is equipped with selfleveling feet for stability. It weighs just 12 pounds and folds up for easy transport in a nylon carrying bag.

ERGONOMICALLY ELEGANT DOCK SURFACES

WWW.AWLGRIP.COM PARKIT360 FORCE ELECTRIC TRAILER DOLLY

WWW.MILLENNIUMMARINE.COM

If you own a boat, you know the stress of backing your trailered pride and joy into a tight space. With this in mind, we took it upon ourselves to take Parkit360’s Force 10K electric trailer dolly for a test spin. Right off the bat, we were impressed. Assembly was easy, and by connecting the trailer’s power harness to the Force, we were able to control the trailer’s brakes with the Smart Brake Control System, which provides control and safety on a steep grade. Also the Bosch-designed electric motor supplied more than enough power to maneuver with little to no effort on the part of the user. The heavy-duty 4’-wide tires maintained traction on concrete as well as gravel and even in wet grass when loaded. The Force dolly proved its functionality regardless of terrain, and that could come in super handy for those parking boats, campers or anything else with a trailer ball where the concrete ends. But the most striking feature of the Force electric trailer dolly was how easy it made maneuvering the boat. With precise and easy-to-use controls, all the stress was taken out of navigating tight corners and turns in forward and reverse. We put the boat into spots we wouldn’t even attempt using a truck. Built of quality materials, powder-coated and compact enough to fit in the trunk of an SUV, Parkit360’s electric trailer dollies are a great tool for anyone who pulls a trailer.

Spider King rod holders make your fishing more productive. A modular Spider King rod holder system lets a fisherman “rig, cast and relax” with as many as eight lines in the water. And the same system can also keep a drink and tackle on hand. The plates attach to the bottom of the boat seat using existing factory holes, therefore there is no need to drill. Accessories include rod holders, drink holder, tackle holder and tackle/drink holder. We also offer outriggers by the pair in single, double and a four-rod holder gunnel-mount spider rig. Spider King products are made in the USA of 100 percent marine grade aluminum and they are powder coated so there is no maintenance or cleaning. Most items are available in black, white and argent silver. Visit the Spider King website to view all of their fine products.

WWW.PARKIT360.CA

WWW.SPIDERKINGRODHOLDERS.COM

SPIDER KING ROD HOLDERS

MARINETECH TROLLMASTER PRO 3+ Trolling is not as fun or effective for the guy tied to the motor. The world’s leading remote throttle control for gas-powered auxillary outboards is now available with wireless remote control. TROLLMaster Pro 3+ is an angler’s dream, allowing the angler to maintain optimum trolling speeds to within 1/10 mph. Slow trolling anglers understand that boat speed can make or break the day’s catch. TROLLMaster maximizes the time spent in the ‘sweet spot.’ Catch more fish with the freedom of movement that wireless control offers. Additional features include momentary ‘max throttle’ burst function for quick response or for ‘fluttering’ baits; idle/resume speed, left and right turn push button control. The hand-held remote is ergonomically designed for hours

of comfort. The remote is water resistant and comes with detachable lanyard and backlit LCD display for positive visibility in dark conditions. Engine specific throttle/hardware kits fit neatly under the cowling and are available to fit most brands of kicker motors. TROLLMaster also allows the angler to control the auxiliary 4 stroke’s steering with the addition of Panther’s Electro Steer drive units. The Panther T-4 and T-5 Electro Steer units are designed to remotely steer ‘kicker’ motors from anywhere on the boat. They mount on the tilt-tube and can be installed in minutes. Electro Steer units are available in fresh and saltwater models.

WWW.TROLLMASTERS.COM PARTNERS AND INVESTORS:

Please contact John 12 NATIONAL I JUNE 2017 CANGL_NAT3-NAT34.indd 12

Munn info@ergodockusa.com for information on how you can get engaged! I COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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NOT ALL FISH STORIES ARE EXAGGERATED.

M

We’ve all heard one. But the fact is, once in a while, life hands you a set of circumstances so astoundingly awesome, it’s hard to believe. And with the power and reliability of the Mercury 60 HP FourStroke behind you, this might happen more often than you think.

:M

Learn more at mercurymarine.com

!

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The all-electric Power-Pole Micro anchor is compact, virtually silent and drives the 3/4” Micro Spike at the push of a button. Add the rechargable Micro Battery Pak and you’re ready to go wherever adventure takes you. Get all the details and find a dealer near you at power-pole.com.

Mercury Unrolls Advanced New Features For Joystick Piloting

F

or almost 80 years, Mercury Marine has been the world’s leading manufacturer of recreational marine engines. The broad range of marine propulsion spans from 2.5hp to 1,700hp in Mercury’s new racing sterndrive engine. Over the past decade, Mercury has invested more than $800 million in research and development and expansion into its global headquarters in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin. That investment has allowed the company to grow its employee base from 1,400 in 2009 to more than 3,200 in 2017—which includes more than 700 engineers. The investment has also allowed Mercury to continue its cadence of averaging one new product launch every six weeks. Today, Mercury is more than an engine company. It’s a marine propulsion solution company that not only has a portfolio of engines for any boater, but also the technology to enhance the boating experience. Mercury’s ecosystem of technology is unmatched in the marine industry and features Joystick Piloting for outboards or inboards, SkyHook virtual anchoring, Vessel View mobile and Active Trim. All four products work together with the engine to create the perfect experience on the water and allow boaters to Go Boldly. The latest innovation from Mercury is an enhancement for Mercury

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Joystick-equipped vessels. Designed for convenient purchase as downloadable content (DLC) from Mercury’s GoFree store, Skyhook Advanced Features provides Joystick vessels with even better positioning control in specific situations. Boaters and anglers who love the way Mercury’s GPS-enabled Skyhook lets their vessel maintain a steady position while waiting for a bridge opening or hold over a reef, will be sure to appreciate Skyhook Advanced Features. New Skyhook Advanced Features include: • Heading Adjust provides Joystick operators with the ability to adjust the heading lock in 1- and 10-degree increments while SkyHook is active, making vessel control even more precise. • BowHook can be used to unlock heading and just maintain position, allowing the boat to point in whatever direction the winds and currents dictate. This feature is useful when a locked-in heading is not necessary. • DriftHook lets the operator maintain heading and unlock the position of the vessel allowing winds and currents to move the vessel along. Adjustments of 1- and 10-degree increments can be made while drifting when bundled with Heading Adjust. In addition, Mercury continues to advance its Vessel View mobile technology and roll it out around the world. The VesselView Mobile app instantly provides users access to their boat’s SmartCraft digital data in the palm of their hand. SmartCraft® is a fully integrated suite of digital technologies, including marine gauges, sensors, vessel systems and computercontrolled features, that gives users a higher level of control over their boat’s propulsion and electrical systems. Now, with Mercury Marine’s VesselView Mobile, users can see SmartCraft engine data right on the screen of their mobile device. The app also includes useful new features such as Maintenance Reminders, Mapping, Performance Summary, and Fault Code Diagnostics. VesselView Mobile makes preparing for and spending a day on the water easier, safer and more enjoyable by letting users perform functions from their mobile device. For more information, visit www.mercurymarine.com.

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INSPIRED BY STRENGTH HELL-FOR-STOUT CONSTRUCTION INCLUDES STAINLESS STEEL GEARS AND UP TO 30-POUNDS OF AVAILABLE DRAG.

NEW KOMODO SS REELS & SHADOW STALKER GULF COAST RODS Powered by aluminum framing, stainless steel drive and high-output Carbonite drag, Komodo SS reels in 350 and 450 sizes are instant favorites. Compact and comfortable with enough line capacity for incredible versatility inshore and offshore. • Shadow Stalker Gulf Coast 1-piece rod actions deliver superior sensitivity and back it with OC-9 carbon reinforcement for amazing strength when the fish of a lifetime strikes. okumafishingusa.com

OVER HALF A MILLION BOATERS CHOOSE US

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BOAT REVIEW Bayliner Element F21

in the forward section—which can also be converted to an optional livewell. The helm’s reversible seat has a cooler as its base, perfect for keeping beverages or snacks iced. The boat’s aft section features two jump seats flanking a recirculating livewell. Standard power is Mercury Marine’s 115 HP 4-Stroke outboard, with an optional 150 HP 4-Stroke also available. Anglers can also add a bow trolling motor, pedestal bow fishing seat, and an additional livewell forward of the helm console. “This boat is our largest center console model yet, and an affordable way to get out and enjoy family fishing, cruising or any number of dayboat activities,” said Bayliner’s President, Keith Yunger. “Its roominess and versatility are exceptional. When you factor in the price, it’s a value you’ll be hard pressed to beat anywhere.”

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UNDER THE SEA 18

FREEDIVING – TRY IT!

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hile visiting a friend of mine about 15 years ago, I noticed a book on his coffee table. It was called “Bluewater Hunting and Freediving” by Terry Maas, and it had the photo of a diver holding a bluefin tuna on the front cover. I already enjoyed hunting on scuba for groupers and snappers in my backyard, but the thought of spearing a tuna intrigued me to no end… and the thought of freediving also caught my attention. I had a hard time finding like-minded friends to dive with at first, as freediving was not a mainstream activity in Florida at the time. After researching a bit, I found a freediving school called Performance Freediving International and signed up for a course. I also found a freedive spearfishing club, which consisted of about 10 guys and no women. To this day, I give the same advice to anyone who wants to learn: “Take a class from a freedive agency, and join a local club so you can make friends and perhaps find a mentor.” Before the class, I had never tried to hold my breath while holding still in a pool—called static apnea. I was predicting that I would be a one-minute diver, but after some instruction I held my breath for four minutes. Most importantly, I learned how to avoid a “blackout” and how to rescue a blacked-out diver. We were taught the importance of the buddy system and one-up/one-down diving. While these classes will at least double your breath-hold time, learning the safety aspects is even more important. Fifteen years later, I can look back and say that learning to freedive opened a whole new underwater world for me. Now that I’m an oldster in the sport, I marvel at the growth rate, the number of agencies offering classes, the number of clubs in the area, and the large number of people that are in those clubs. It’s wonderful to see so many young people enjoying the sport. Lest I give the impression that freediving is a young people’s activity or something that super-athletes do, let me debunk that myth. I have met overweight smokers that were very good at it, and I’ve been diving with 80 year olds who were still enjoying it. Freediving is for anyone

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who is willing to give Photo by Joe Marino it a try. Whether it’s to spearfish, experience the ocean in a different way, or simply find your inner-self at the bottom of the ocean, it’s an activity that anyone can enjoy. It’s a natural, satisfying and spiritual experience to hold one’s breath and become one with the ocean. If you have the slightest interest, do not be intimidated; it’s actually very easy. Just give it a try… you might like it! P.S. Terry Maas just came out with an updated digital version of the book, and I am honored that he featured my worldrecord yellowfin tuna. You never know what will happen when you try new things! Sheri Daye is a world-record holder, host of Speargun Hunter, and producer of “The Blue Wild Ocean Adventure Expo” in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. Follow “Sheri Daye” and “The Blue Wild” on Facebook and Instagram.

For more Sheri Daye, go to

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FLORIDA

Permit and Grouper Make June Magnificent in Martin Co.

I

t’s funny to think a tiny crab no bigger than a silver dollar is a viable live bait option in the vastly huge Atlantic Ocean. But when fishing around Martin County during the month of June, it pays to stop by a local tackle shop on the way to a boat ramp and pick up a peck of live crabs. That’s what Off the Chain sportfishing’s Capt. Scott Fawcett does. As he prepares to meet clients at his boat at Sailfish Marina on the Manatee Pocket, he’ll pick up a dozen or more crabs to toss in his live bait well. Recently, while fishing with angler Ryan Dayton of West Palm Beach, those crabs were hooked onto a lead-head jig and dropped to the top of a shallow reef just outside St. Lucie Inlet. Fawcett hoped Dayton would hook a cobia, or even a wayward tarpon (crabs work great for them, too), but most of all, a trophy permit. Permit are one of those big-three targeted catches for the advanced angler. Along with tarpon and bonefish, permit rate as a fantastic fighter on light tackle. They are capable of thrilling speeds, incredible endurance and tackle-testing strength. The one difference is that in Martin County waters there isn’t the classic Biscayne Bay or Islamorada experience of sight casting a fly to a fish feeding in 18

By Ed Killer

inches of gin clear water. Here, plenty of permit are caught, but with jigs and live crabs on artificial reefs and wrecks, natural reefs, or even along the beaches by anglers casting for much smaller permit cousins, pompano. Oh, and by the way, anglers here can catch giant tarpon and speedy bonefish, too, if that is your goal. Dayton did hook that permit, and another, too. They went about 30 pounds apiece. And surf anglers fishing from Hutchinson Island beaches earlier this year caught permit within casting range of the high-tide mark using artificial lures like Fish Bites or just a tiny clam strip. If there is something a permit likes as much as a live crab, it’s a clam strip. When the permit start to show up in the fishing reports locally, it means grouper season has opened. May 1 through Dec. 31, anglers fishing out of Martin County marinas will catch gag grouper and black grouper to 40 pounds, red grouper to 15 pounds and scamp grouper to 12 pounds in 60 to 180 feet of water. Again, the county’s extensive investment in its artificial reef construction program has led to the benefits of great fishing for game fish and sport fish which orient to structure. Like permit and grouper.

Photo by Capt. Scott Fawcett, Off The Chain Charters • Photo caption: Ryan Dayton, of West Palm Beach, made a trip to Martin County to fish for permit with Capt. Scott Fawcett of Off the Chain Fishing Charters out of Sailfish Marina in Stuart. He used a live crab on a jighead to catch it offshore.

Make reel memories. Stuart, located in Martin County, is known as the Sailfish Capital of the World. Sitting on the most biodiverse estuary in the Northern Hemisphere, and the northernmost point of the South Florida Reef, Martin County is home to 100 artificial reef systems and over 800 species of fish. Its climate, waterways and natural environment make it a mecca for fishermen and nautical explorers year-round. An array of unique shops, fine restaurants, great golf courses and quiet beaches make a day ashore fun, too. Inshore, offshore, salt water or fresh, head out for an adventure and reel in the memories.

Plan your trip at discovermartin.com

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Cox Earns Bassmaster Classic Berth

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fter more than a decade of fishing Bassmaster Southern Open events, local Florida angler John Cox finally won his first one. The event, held on the famed Tennessee River impoundment Lake Chickamauga, was a three-day tournament that was very tough on most of the anglers including Cox. The 31-year-old angler is the reigning FLW Tour Champion and he is on a hot streak. After learning the 2018 Bassmaster Classic would be hosted at South Carolina’s Lake Hartwell, he set his sights on winning an Open event to punch his ticket for a Bassmaster Classic berth. Cox is known on the bass circuit as one of the best sight-fishing anglers. He used his keen eyesight and knowledge of spawning bass to win on Chickamauga. Cox was one of the few anglers who exclusively sight fished throughout the second Southern Open of the season. It was an effective technique for several of the tournament’s top finishers. He put himself in contention for the win with a 22-6 limit on Thursday, followed by a 25-7 bag on Friday. His two-day total of 47-13 gave him more than a 3-pound lead heading into Saturday’s action, and his 20-6 limit on Saturday was heavy enough to secure the win. The Mud Hole Custom Tackle pro, who hails from Debary, Fla., picked up a contingency berth in the 2018 GEICO Bassmaster Clas-

sic presented by DICK’s Sporting Goods with the victory. Fishing all three Southern Opens this season will solidify that berth. He also won more than $8,000 in cash, as well as a Triton 19 TrX and Mercury 200 Pro XS boat/motor package worth $40,000. “I’ve tried so long to win one of these Opens, it seems like forever,” Cox said. “I started fishing the Opens when I was 19. It’s where I started, really, so this definitely is a special thing for me. Building my own custom MHX rods is key for my success, because I can build technique-special rods and actions for different conditions.” Cox won the Lake Hartwell FLW Tour event last season and is excited about his chances in the Bassmaster Classic there. He won the Hartwell event last summer fishing the back of creeks getting his aluminum bass boat in places where most anglers could not go. Although the Classic will be held on Hartwell in the early spring, Cox is pleased to be fishing his first Classic event. Cox is having a decent start to the FLW Tour season, as well. Fishing in his own backyard on the third event at the Harris Chain of Lakes in Leesburg, Fla., Cox was super excited to fish his home waters. He led the event for the first three days to finish in third place and enjoy a nice payday. Cox finished in eighth in the recent FLW Event on Arkansas’ Beaver Lake after going out in fourth place on the final day. It was his second top-10 finish on the tour with just two events left this season.

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Don Combs The Angler By Terry Lacoss

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“T

he sun was just about to set when I noticed a large school of bait that was being pushed up to the surface by game fish deep below,” said legendary Florida blue water angler Don Combs. “The nervous school of baitfish showered the surface of the calm ocean.” Combs and his fishing party, aboard the St. Augustine-based sportfishing boat Shark Bait, were fishing for sailfish in 300 feet of water. The sailfish bite had been excellent off of Flagler Beach, Fla., which led them to believe sails were likely working that pod of baitfish.
 “We trolled right through that nervous school of bait, resulting in a big fish striking a black and blue Flame lure,” remembered Combs. “We fought that big wahoo for almost a half hour before we were able to bring the hooked fish up close to the transom of my sportfishing boat… I know that wahoo had to have weighed well over 150 pounds!” Combs knows what a big wahoo looks like. He holds the Northeast Florida Marlin Association’s record for a wahoo that weighed 125 pounds. He and his team had just set out a spread of high-speed lures when that big ’hoo struck.
 “Typically the really big wahoo will take a large bait or lure,” Combs said. “In this case we had just begun to troll with a spread of large C&H lures. Minutes later that monster ’hoo struck, and we had it in the boat in less than 15 minutes. I immediately announced on the VHF marine radio that the tournament was over and we had just landed the winning wahoo!” The Shark Bait team won the Northeast Florida Marlin Association’s annual wahoo tournament, and they also set a club record that stands to this day.
 Wahoo fishing is so good off northeast Florida that boats often hook up with 10 or more per trip to the ledge, where depths drop sharply from 180 to 1,000 feet of water. Combs and fishing party once hooked 21 wahoo in a single day fishing off St. Augustine. “One thing that I have learned, though, is that wahoo prefer to strike a lure that is trolled under the surface and is also trolled in a dead-straight line. Some of my favorite lure combination colors for wahoo include blue-white and red-black. Ironically, one of the very first lures I designed is still one of my favorite blue water lures today, the American Express. We have caught some really large wahoo with this popular lure, and during one blue water fishing trip to the Big Ledge, we boated a 67-, 57- and 45-pound bull dolphin with the bluewhite American Express.” Combs helped pioneer speed trolling for wahoo. He produced some of the world’s best blue water lures while heading up C&H lures, and his high-speed lures include C & H Mr. Big, Wahoo Whacker XL and the American Express. But Comb’s real windfall was putting together Salt Life outdoor apparel. He and his wife Cynthia captured the first “Super Slam” ever recorded in northeast Florida and in one year caught and released 52 billfish off north Florida.

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Photo by Lori Griffith

Paddleboarders to Cross 50 Miles from Bimini to South Florida for Cystic Fibrosis

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ore than 30 paddleboarders will cross international waters over Father’s Day weekend to raise funds and awareness for south Florida-based cystic fibrosis (‘CF’) organization, Piper’s Angels. On June 17, the philanthropic fleet will leave Bimini in the Bahamas and travel more than 50 miles non-stop to South Florida. The team, which will be led by Travis Suit, includes Palm Beach restaurateur, Nick Coniglio, and Director of the West Palm Beach Downtown Development Authority, Raphael Clemente. Travis will be lead a team of paddleboarders in the name of his daughter, Piper, who was diagnosed at the age of 4 with an aggressive form of CF. Crossing For A Cure is the flagship event for Piper’s Angels, whose mission is to raise funds for cystic fibrosis research, provide support for families living with disease, and to share what they have experienced about the scientifically proven link between CF and the healing powers of the ocean. “We were devastated when Piper was diagnosed with CF. As a dad, to hear that your child is suffering from a disease with an average life expectancy of about 37-years-old, you really feel the weight of the world,” said Suit. “When we heard about the effects that salt water has on the lungs, we knew we had to get her in the ocean immediately. It doesn’t cure the disease, but she doesn’t suffer nearly as much, and we’re hoping that instilling a lifelong love for the ocean will keep her alive as long as possible. That’s why we started Crossing For A Cure. We want to make sure that everyone who suffers from CF knows that salt water can help, and provide them access to enjoy it.” According to researchers, the inhaled mist of salt water has a therapeutic effect on the lung problems associated with the disease. Scientists are optimistic that the therapy will reduce how often patients are ill and will slow the decline of lung function over time, thus extending their lifespan. Crossing For A Cure participants will check in on Thursday, June 15 before a day of mandatory safety meetings. The team of paddleboarders will be accompanied by support vessels and staff to guide them across the Gulf Stream. The long-distance endurance paddle challenge is estimated to take about 15 hours to complete. Each participant raised a minimum of $1,000. The event is expected to raise over $50,000 for the disease. All proceeds will go to CF research and local families in the CF community. The team’s target destination is the Dania Beach Pier, 300 N Beach Rd, Dania Beach, Fla. However, due to the weather events that may change the course and final destination of landfall, supporters are encouraged to monitor the Crossing For A Cure Facebook page, which will have real time updates. For more information about Crossing For A Cure, or to make a donation, visit www.crossingforacure.com, or contact Travis Suit at travis@pipersangels.org or by phone at 561-246-0205. For more on this event and the people behind it, go to

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Lorem ipsum By Nick Carter

Flies matched to the bottom color, with lots of movement, are great for bonefish. Drew Chicone’s Coyote Ugly Spawning Shrimp is an excellent fly. Look for Drew’s patterns and flies from other tiers in Ghost Stories, an upcoming volume documenting the history of the Bahamas bonefishing industry.

By Tom Karrow • Photos by Dan Decibel

F

ly anglers are as attracted to their flies as fish are, and in some cases, more attracted than the fish. I have seen many fly boxes packed full of a wide variety of flies, and I too am guilty of trying new patterns when all too often the old standby is the best choice. I have seen many flies that look very good but don’t catch many fish. I have seen the worst looking flies produce the most fish. In fact, I often find flies that have been used, abused and reduced to all but garbage frequently work the best. It may be they are permeated with fish scents, or that I have confidence in them. Whatever the case is, they work well. There are a wide variety of flies available for anglers, and selecting from the array can be complicated. There are different colors, sizes and materials. There are weighted flies and unweighted flies. So, what are the best flies? The simple answer is: it depends. I don’t feel a wide variety of different fly patterns is necessary. I do believe one should have different sizes, colors and weights of productive patterns. Whether it is a Crazy Charlie, a Gotcha, Clouser or Simram, an angler needs an assortment to choose from for at least one of these styles. I would rather have a fly box full of only one type of fly, as long as I have different sizes, colors and weights of that fly. Depending on the location, size, color and weight will vary. For much of the Bahamas, where the bonefish are large, larger flies in sizes 4, 2 or even larger, will suffice. You always want some weighted flies for deeper water or high tides. I tie a Gotcha with different sizes of lead eyes and different sizes of bead chain as well as plastic eyes to suit any condition I encounter. It is important to remember, when you don’t have a certain fly, you will surely need that fly… It’s kinda like Murphy’s Law. Over the course of my travels throughout the Bahamas and in the many interviews I have conducted of Bahamian professional

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bonefish guides, I have learned much about flies and fly selection. On one of my first trips to the Bahamas, I stayed at the North Riding Point Club on Grand Bahama, where I interviewed their head guide Stanley Glinton. Stanley is a great guy and has being a guide for more than 40 years. When I asked him about fly selection, he shared a little about how he selects a fly saying, “The food the fish feed on imitates the bottom. The crab in the grass, look more like greenish, with stripes.... the crab on the sand bar look more like beige. So when you go on the flats, you try to match what you think the feed is on that particular bottom... if it’s beige, or dark green.... you try to match the fly like that.” The old adage that a guide knows best is absolutely true. These are individuals who are on the water day in and day out. They are constantly testing flies, observing, investigating and putting their knowledge to work, and most importantly they know what has been working. When it comes to fly selection, I always ask the guide’s opinion. If a guide suggests a change, I change my fly without hesitation. People who listen to their guide usually catch more fish. A final consideration when selecting flies should be in the materials the fly is made from. Some materials have a tendency to move very well in the water, making them more attractive to fish. I prefer natural materials when I tie flies, and my favorite is rabbit hair. It is durable, comes in a wide variety of colors, is easy to use, and has great movement in the water. For more information about the interviewing and research that I have been working on throughout the Bahamas please visit http:// tomkarrow.wixsite.com/bahamas-guide-tek

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DESTIN REPORT By: Peter Wright Jr. June in Destin means it’s time to go fishing! It also means the kick off of federal Red Snapper season, which has become a bigger holiday than the Fourth of July. The offshore bite in June really starts to turn on as the water warms up and we get good pushes of blue water in closer. Get your boat and tackle ready; you don’t want to miss out. Inshore Bite: I’ve talked with numerous customer and guides over the last couple months and all are agreement that this has been a great year for speckled trout. The grade of trout is excellent this year too. The bait is plentiful. The grass beds seem very healthy. All are great things to see and it really makes you excited for what the future can hold. Many people are doing very good fishing artificial soft and hard plastic baits over the grass flats early in the morning and late in the evening. One of my favorites is the suspending Mirrolure Mirrodine. There’s been a ton of greenies and menhaden in the bayous that are terrific trout baits. They’re small right now, but will get bigger as time goes on. You can cast net these in the back and edges of the bayous extending to the bay and also on the shallow grass flats, just look for them schooling for flipping. I like to find a good grass flat in about 5-6 ft of water and anchor up, use a chum bat to sling out some of the excess menhaden, and free line the live baits back behind the boat. You’ll have to weed through some of the bluefish and catfish, but you’ll catch plenty of nice trout this way. Also, if you can find the croakers, there’s no better bait out there for trout, so if you find them make sure you get a bunch and keep

it quiet where you caught them, don’t even tell your Momma where you’re getting them, they’re not easy to find. Of course fishing at night can be a great escape from the heat in June and is also a great way to catch trout under the lights of docks. You want to use smaller baits like shrimp when fishing like this. You want to be able to just lay something up there and not spook anything. Don’t flop a big giant pinfish up there. The redfish bite has been strong too. Just fish the same way you are for trout and you’ll be able to pick a few up like that. Offshore Bite: June 1st is the start of the federal red snapper season. Unfortunately, it’s not going to last long this year for the recreational fisherman, but our state waters are holding plenty of fish too. People wait around all year for this day because their frustration of catching them all year long and having to release them can finally get relieved. For the guys that get stressed out about where to fish for snapper, don’t. Almost everything out there that’s marked “public” holds plenty of red snapper. Some the ways to catch bigger and more fish at the public stuff is to make sure and catch nice pretty live baits. Try and load up with cigarminnows and herring. Dial back your terminal gear using fluorocarbon leaders from 40-50lb. Fish up in the water, about half way; you’ll get more bites and catch bigger fish. Sometimes even using smaller hooks will get you more bites too. There’s plenty of fish on these wrecks, you just need to try different techniques to catch them. We don’t have many days, so make them count. Get out there and catch some fish. The king mackerel bite has been terrific this year too which I really

hope stays around. All the nearshore wrecks and reefs have been holding a ton of mackerel. They’ve been pretty savage too so if you can’t find the live baits, troll the dead cigar minnows or even Yo-Zuri Crystal Minnows. Bluewater: 2017 so far has been a terrific year for the offshore/bluewater bite. We have had a big push of pretty blue water in as close as 15 miles for over a month now. While the best fishing has been out towards the spur, the edge starting at around 28 miles has been very good too. Lots of wahoo and blackfin tuna have been stacked up along the edge. There’s been a ton of grass stacked up forming big patches and lines that you can catch all the dolphin you want on. There have been quite a few billfish mixed in along the edge and further offshore as well. If you can get a crew together to make a trip, it’s a great time to do so. If the weather stays like it has been the last month or so, I predict that our offshore bite should stay very strong throughout the month of June and into July. For more info on boats, fishing, tackle, etc, make sure and stop by the Ships Chandler in Destin, FL, 850-837-9306 or check us out on the web at www. theshipschandler.com

Peter Wright Jr The Ships Chandler 646 E. Hwy 98 Destin, FL 32541 850-837-9306

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Jun 01, 2017 Jun 02, 2017 Jun 03, 2017 Jun 04, 2017 Jun 05, 2017 Jun 06, 2017 Jun 07, 2017 Jun 08, 2017 Jun 09, 2017 Jun 10, 2017 Jun 11, 2017

FAIR Morning POOR Morning POOR Morning POOR Morning GOOD Morning BEST Morning FAIR Morning FAIR Morning FAIR Evening GOOD Evening GOOD Evening

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BEST Evening GOOD Evening GOOD Evening BEST Evening BEST Evening POOR Morning POOR Morning FAIR Morning FAIR Morning POOR Morning POOR Morning

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GOOD Evening GOOD Evening POOR Evening POOR Evening FAIR Evening FAIR Evening FAIR Evening POOR Morning

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“Way Down Yonder In Plaquemines” (Where the Salt Grass grows)-by Big “O” Charters When traveling down Highway 23, south of New Orleans, you will notice that the long skinny “toe” of Louisiana gets smaller and smaller. There are levees on both sides of the road, but pretty much nothing else until you hit Port Sulphur. This is a small town that had its hay day in the early 1900’s where the mined Sulphur was transferred from barges and boats to rail for shipment. Then you travel another 7 or 8 lonely miles until you go up the Empire Bridge. Then “BOOM” the whole world opens up. You can see miles and miles of the Mississippi River on your left, with Breton Sound in the background. Then to the right you have the expanse of the West Delta, Bay Adams, Empire Jetties, etc. Oyster boats and shrimp boats are everywhere. Fishing boats of all sizes are launching under the bridge at the Delta Marina. It’s like the lonely little highway just became a saltwater fishing mecca. In all respects, it has. From here to the mouth of the River at Venice, you have some of the best saltwater/ freshwater fishing and duck hunting in the world. However, if you make it to the Empire Bridge you have gone too far, 1 ½ miles too far. Back up the Highway 23, and over on the levy road is a little piece of “Heaven on Earth” known as “Salt Grass Lodge”. So turn around, take the first right at the northern foot of the Bridge, then left at the levy for a mile or two until you see this 4 story, antebellum home, sitting on the banks of the Mighty Mississippi. This will be your home away from home for the next few days. So sit back and enjoy. You are now in “God’s Country”. This beautiful home wasn’t so beautiful 12 years ago. A young lady known as Katrina, blew through here in August of 2005, and changed everything. Yes, New Orleans was hit hard by the hurricane but not any harder than Plaquemines Parish. The eye of the storm passed right over this little toe of Louisiana. This was the first landfall for the storm. The winds were still at maximum force, and the storm surge was at its highest. Consequently, almost everything in this sleepy Parish was destroyed, or at least heavily damaged. This includes the beautiful Salt Grass Lodge, which didn’t have a name at that time. 3 friends of mine Raymond, Michael, and Josh Schmidt had a dream of a fishing lodge. They pooled their money, along with all they could get from the bank and bought this badly broken 4 story home and began the long tireless task of returning her to her original beauty. A year later they opened their dream of “Salt Grass Lodge” with a large housewarming party. I was honored, along with my wife, to be invited and was asked to give the house its invocation and God’s prayers before the dinner. We had a great time and enjoyed oysters, fish, shrimp, and crawfish, everything the waters around us provided. The several hundred guests were awed by the beauty of this beast. And I asked God to help these men be successful for all the hard work and expense of their endeavor. Several years later Salt Grass was a busy fishing lodge. They had a large following in this fisherman’s paradise. Where else can you eat like a king, sleep like a bear, and catch fish like a shark. Things were going great and then…And Then!! And then the BP Oil Spill hit Plaquemines Parish. Within days the news was all over the world. The largest oil spill ever had hit us and was still spewing its black poison into the Gulf of Mexico just 50 miles south of Salt Grass Lodge. Our state Wildlife and Fisheries Department shut down all recreational fishing indefitenly. No one, including myself, (I make my living fishing) knew what was going to happen. Salt Grass Lodge was no longer open for business. This was scary times for everyone. When someone askes “what’s going on”? The usual answer is “The Rent”! This answer couldn’t be any truer than in Plaquemines Parish. We all have to keep paying the rent. And with no income, creditors will be calling. This is the realities of life, not a picture show. Fortunately for Salt Grass and many businesses down here, there were thousands of workers coming in to help clean up the oil. The Schmidt brothers jumped in and offered their home as a lodging place for Coast Guard, BP officials, workers, safety personnel, etc. For 10 months Salt Grass Lodge became a hotel to house some of the people in charge of containing and stopping this disaster. For 10 months they washed the sheets, towels, and clothes of the workers. They fed the masses. They had a facility that was custom made to help out in this time of need. They had a luxury hotel. Fortunately, the rent being paid to them for this, paid the rent for Salt Grass to keep its doors open. It kept the head of this beautiful home above water. The creditors were happy and so were the owners of Salt Grass.

Then a year after the oil spill, the oil was stopped, the beaches were cleaned, and everyone packed up and was gone. It was almost like an overnight ghostown was created. Michael and Josh Schmidt wanted out of the business. Brother Raymond bought out his two partners and was now the sole proprietor of Salt Grass Lodge. All the previous customers from the first years of operation were gone. The previous Captains had other jobs. The Chef, house cleaners, yard men had all moved on to other jobs. So Raymond had to start back from scratch. “And scratch he did”! Raymond is a fighter. He’s been a friend of mine for a long time and I’ve never known him to back down from a fight. He has assembled one of the finest business/fishing staffs in the marine industry. When you book you’ll get to talk to Tracy or Stephany. They will give you all the information you need. If you want a two person trip or a twenty person trip, they can tell you what’s available and what to expect. They are always polite and courteous and are there for you. On the day of your trip you will be assigned your Captain for the day. Captains Isaac, Michael, Louis, Chris and Dean are the regulars. More Captains can be brought in if needed. They are all Licensed Coast Guard Captains. There is a lot more to being a fishing Captain than meets the eye. This includes drug screening, physical fitness, safety and first aid. Plus they all have to pass a series of tests with a minimum score of 92%. This particular Coast Guard License allows your Captain to traverse the Mississippi River, which has rules and regulations different from all other areas around the globe. They, also, have a current Louisiana State Captains license, which has to be renewed annually. They carry maritime insurance on both boat and passengers. And their equipment is always top notch, state of the art. Your catch is cleaned, packaged, and iced any way you want it. Now for the fun part. You just thought fishing was fun. Salt Grass has bedroom facilities equal to most 5 star hotels. King, Queen, and double size beds are available, with walk in lavatory and bath. You can go into the cypress room, or the wine room and be amazed by the decor. Or, and this is my favorite, you can go up onto the top balcony, which overlooks the Mighty River, and sip your mint julip sitting under the ceiling fans, and waving to the ships as they pass. If you’re there on a Friday night you may get to see one of our Cruise Ships departing upriver from New Orleans and headed to parts unknown. They are usually lit up like carnival. With a little luck you may get the ship’s Captain to blow his horn in salute to you and your crew on Salt Grass’s Balcony. What a treat! Now the good part—FOOD. Salt Grass has a complete stainless steel kitchen that would be the envy of most restaurants in New Orleans. And the food is second to none. Chef Kevin can put,” some vittles on the table”, that’s an understatement! You may get, shrimp etoufee, boudin balls, drum meuniere, etc. Need I go on? With a little heads up you might get Raymond to boil you a sack of crawfish, if it’s the right time of year. Maybe charbroiled oysters fit your fancy. You may desire to have your catch of the day served. You can’t beat fresh fried speckled trout, hush puppies and trimmings, or red fish on the half shell. You may prefer blackened red fish, Paul Prudomme style. Believe me you won’t be disappointed in the cuisine I’m not even going to talk about the desserts. All I’ll say is save some room-if you can! After dinner, if you can get a beer or two into your host, Captain Raymond, you might get him to tell a few stories or better yet a few lies. Maybe about the time, after Katrina, that he and I drove over the Empire Bridge backwards and before it was open for traffic, just to see if it would hold our truck. Or maybe the time he got out of my boat to mark a fishing reef, and then I had to get him back into my boat. You’ll understand when you see Raymond, he’s pretty big. He is one of the most colorful people in Plaquemines Parish. I cherish him as a true friend. You will too after your stay at Salt Grass Lodge. So, if you’re fishing by yourself, or you have a corporate group of 20 or more, think seriously about Salt Grass. It’s one of the most fun and most beautiful destinations in Plaquemines Parish. As they might say south of Belle Chase , “bons temps rouler”! “Let the good times roll at Salt Grass”!

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Capt. Owen Langridge Big “O” Charters LLC 225 978 1136 Bigocharters.com JUNE 2017

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VENICE OFFSHORE REPORT By: Captain Brett Ryan

The fishing out of Venice has been on firethe past few week. In the past month we have been catching Yellowfin Tuna as close as seven miles out of South Pass. Most were caughtwith a combination of live bait, pink Mirrolures, and Frenzy poppers. Remember to use the appropriate size hook on your live baits. A Mustard 6/0 circle hook on live pogy (menhaden) was our steup. Although they were not monster tuna, there werre lots of them, The yellowfin have now made their move out to the floaters and are in the 45-100 pound range including some being

caught around 150lbs. Grass lines are forming upwell and holding lots of bait. Along that we are seeing lots of Mahi and Marlin. No matter what you choose to put in your spread, I recommend a blue and white ilander. Just about every pelagic specie will continue until the fall. When fishing Red Snapper we use Mustad 16/0 circle hooks. Using a larger hook helps keep those peskyunder size snapper from stealing the bait. Vist my website or give us a call for more info. have a great summer. Good luck and stay safe out there. Capt. Brett Ryan Venice, La 504-231-1842 www.captainbrettryan.com

Planning your next financial journey?

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SANDESTIN REPORT By: Captain Sid Little Red snapper season fishing has been good so far and still open in state water. They can be found less than a mile from the beach on out passed the edge. Snapper can be found on everything from natural to artificial wrecks. It makes you wonder why they ever shortened the season on red snapper in the panhandle area. Our bottom spots are polluted with snapper. Red snapper can be caught on just about any live, dead or artificial bait you send down. Live baits such as threadfin herring, cigar minnows, spanish sardine and hardtails are most common used and can be caught on sabiki rigs outside the Destin Pass and up and down the beach. Other live baits such as pigfish, pinfish, croaker, and mullet work great too. Dead baits like boston mackeral, squid, and frozen cigs catch snapper just fine but typically do not work as well as live bait. Rig according to the depth of water and if the structure you are fishing is natural or artificial. Main line of 20-50 lb mono or braid will work fine on snapper. A 6 foot, 40-80lb leader tied to a 4/0-7/0 circle hook with enough weight to get it down. Most of your bigger snappers will be caught higher up in the water so pay attention to your fish finder and see what depth the snappers are holding in. Keep an eye out for snappers coming up behind the boat. Cut your weight off and free spool baits back if this happens. Artificial lures such as diamond jigs, butterfly jigs, bucktail jigs, lucanus jigs, are a blast to catch snapper with. There is nothing like it when you are on the upward end of your jig and you get slammed by a snapper. The best part about the jigging is you can work the whole water column and cover the area. Tarpon will be cruising just off our beaches heading towards the Mississippi Delta from now through end of June. A few will get into the bays and hang out through the summer, but most keep on with their mission heading west. A 20-30lb spinning

outfit will do the job, rigged with a 2 foot leader of 60-80lb tied to a 5/0-7/0 owner mutu light circle hook. Rig the circle hook with a live threadfin herring, spanish sardine, or large cigar minnow. I recommend you start early in the morning (before the para sail boats get started) and look for the tarpon rolling on top. When you do spot some fish get out in front of them and turn the engine off and wait for the school to approach you. Then cast out in front of them and let the bait swim down. Spotting the tarpon is the easy part. Getting one to eat is a little more work. You are going to see a lot of fish in a morning of searching. You will have a lot of fish pass up your offerings. Keep at it and you will be rewarded with a great fight and a great fish. Just remember to bow to the fish when they decide to go airborne and this will help you keep a hook

Great friend and return client Jim Ford from Tennessee with a fine beach red snapper

Captain Sid Little ph: 850-699-2286 850-246-5874

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VENICE INSHORE REPORT By: Captain Owen Langridge

June Forecast by Big “O” Charters I got married in June, 50 years ago. I won’t be fishing on June 3rd. But the rest of the month will be dedicated to a different June ‘Bride”. The June Brides of the fishing world will be spawning in June, and this matrimony makes for great fishing in Venice in June. May through August is spawning time for speckled trout, and June is right in the middle of this spawning season. Downriver the big Muddy will be on a slow fall after Her high May. This will mean clean water and speckled trout. The beaches, points of passes, and rock jetties will all produce trout. An imitation shrimp under a “ParadisePopper” will produce. You can work it kind of fast and watch it go down. If plastic doesn’t work then live will. Live bait will be available at all the marinas. You can, also work the outer rigs and islands. If I’m at a rig, I like to Carolina rig a live shrimp. If I’m at the islands, I like a live shrimp under a cork. I just received a shipment of a new shrimp from Betts Tackle. It’s called Perfect Sinker, and it looks great and tough as nails. I can’t wait to try it on our big Venice “yellowmouths”. It can be used under a cork, or cast and retrieved on a titeline, floats perfectly either way.

good current, and pitch old faithful. You guessed it, market bait under a noisy cork. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. This combo has produced for me for 60 years. It keeps on ticking. Behind Buras go to the oysters; the oyster reefs always produce trout. Try an imitation shrimp in sparkle and chartreuse. Pop it under a cork and you are in business. While working the oysters keep a look out in all directions for diving birds. If it’s laughing gulls then you got live shrimp with trout driving them to the surface for the gulls. Drift slowly into them from up current and throw anything. You’ll catch the trout under the birds. It can’t get any more funner! The reds will be just like their downriver cousins, but instead of cane points they will hang out on the grass points. Old faithful will produce. If this bores you then throw a gold spoon tipped with red flagging tape. Yes flagging tape. Try it-you’ll like it.

Well that sums up June. My June Bride will have the corn meal seasoned and the grease hot when I get home.

Capt. Owen Langridge Big “O” Charters L.L.C. 225 978 1136 www.bigocharters.com

Red fish will be patrolling the canes. Look for points with a

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SHE’S WAITING | 850.837.6496 | MISSAEGINA .COM

PERDIDO KEY FISHING REPORT Red Snapper season is now in a full-tilt boogie with trip after trip of no-limit of smiles and some pretty red snapper too! I anticipate that both our inshore and offshore trips will be full of action. Inshore we look to get on the early morning bite. This time of year we like to go for the “Inshore Slams” targeting Speckled Trout, Flounder and Redfish. I mainly fish artificial baits such as MirrOlure’s for top water action and Matrix Shads for soft baits and typically use the Matrix ¼ oz. Golden Eye jig heads. When you plot out your fishing course, you should keep in mind where to the ledges. Look for the structure such as docks, bulkheads and oyster beds. Your best bet is to find a good drift using the wind to ease you into position, making sure to not spook them while in the shallows. As we ease into our summer weather pattern and rising water temps, plenty of bait will begin to show up just off our beaches. And with them a lot of action can be had with some monster King Mackerels and the tough-fighting Bonito! They

Lost Bay Guide Service Capt. Bill Willis 850-748-5076 www.lostbayfishing.com

are fun to watch chasing all the bait. You can have a blast with these fast swimmers, either casting into the schooling bait fish, or trolling around them often produces great results due to covering a lot of area. Many of our clients enjoy easing off the beach a few miles to get their drags screaming on some light tackle spinning reels free-lining live cigar minnows over our robust snapper reefs! We really are lucky to have such a great fishery here in Perdido Key. If you would like to book a charter, we still have a few openings left for the next few weeks. Call now to book your next family memory with Lost Bay Guide Service.

¨You only live once but if you do it right once is enough.”

Guide Service

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ishermen have been on an eternal quest for the perfect knot. This effort is futile because the line must bend to tie any knot, which always weakens the line, in many cases, substantially! Tauten has replaced the knot with a polymer line weld which results in virtually no loss in system strength. Instead of the line breaking at the weld, the line itself will fail first. Works on braid, mono or fluorocarbon Simply run line through lure/hook and back over device, push button and line is welded to itself in seconds Takes easily replaced and inexpensive polymer cartridges (up to 12 welds per) Device derived from one used by surgeons to tie surgical knots and is extremely durable, lightweight and it floats! Allows you to use smaller diameter line or increases the breaking strength of existing line No more failed knots!

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very year, thousands of sea turtles wander up south Florida’s sandy beaches to build nests and lay eggs. Our shorelines are an essential habitat to future generations of many species of sea turtles, including loggerheads, greens, hawksbills, leatherbacks and Kemp’s Ridley. Sea Turtle season begins in south Florida in early March and lasts until the end of October. Loggerheads are by far the most popular species to visit our beaches. The southeastern U.S. is home to the largest nesting aggregation of loggerhead sea turtles in the entire world. Palm Beach County hosts more loggerhead nests per square mile than anywhere else in the world. Sea Turtles carry out their nesting practices nocturnally. Females with fertilized eggs swim ashore, slowly scooting their way up the beach and away from the waterline. Occasionally, these turtles will feel uncomfortable releasing their eggs and head back into the water to explore a new section of beach. These instances create a “false crawl,” which can be identified by turtle tracks that form a U shape, leading up the beach and then back down into the water with the absence of a nest. Once a female turtle has reached a desired spot on the beach and deems it safe to create her nest, she will utilize her strong, paddle-shaped flippers to dig a hole, into which she will release eggs. Generally, sea turtles lay around 100 eggs per nest. Before returning to the water, the turtle uses her flippers to fill in the hole and cover her eggs with sand. After 60 to 90 days in the nest, depending on species, the baby, or “hatchling,” turtles will emerge from their soft shells and dig their way out of the nest. Hatchlings often emerge at nighttime, and are guided naturally into the water by waves and ambient moonlight reflecting off the ocean. Throughout much of south Florida, sea turtle nesting season puts into practice “lights out” along the beach. Too much ambient light from populated areas along the beach can disorient baby turtles and cause them to move in the wrong direction, away from the water. Most of the sea turtle species that nest along our Florida beaches are already endangered, so it’s important to minimize any negative impacts that our presence may have on them. Pick up any trash or discarded marine supplies you see along the shoreline when you visit the beach. If you come across a sea turtle nesting, keep a good distance between you and the turtle, and keep lights and noise to a minimum. Remember to fill in any holes that may have been dug during your time at the beach, and stay away from sea turtle tracks and marked nests. You can learn more about sea turtles and their nesting habits during Pura Vida Divers’ June Social Night, or by completing a PADI Sea Turtle Awareness Distinctive Specialty. Visit our website for a full list of upcoming events at www.puravidadivers.com, or call the shop to sign up for an upcoming class: 561-840-8750.

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CCA Florida STAR Focuses On Education, Conservation

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he largest family friendly saltwater fishing competition in Florida—CCA Florida STAR, presented by Yamaha—kicked off May 27. With more than $500,000 in prizes and scholarships, the Coastal Conservation Association (CCA) is using the social media-based, 101-day event to educate the public on the importance of protecting Florida’s marine resources. Recognized as a “catch, photo and release” competition, STAR’s smart phone app eliminates the requirement for anglers to harvest or capture and transport fish. Registered anglers submit a photo of their catch on a free official measuring device via the app directly from the boat, dock or ramp. Once photographed, catches may be immediately released back into their natural habitat. “Our state’s natural resources and fisheries are here for our enjoyment, but we understand that smart angling will preserve these resources for the future,” stated Brian Gorski, executive director of CCA Florida. “The STAR event is a fantastic way to provide a fun competition with amazing prizes, protect our fish populations and generate critical data in the process.” The event’s Conservation Division is designed to reward anglers who provide the most catch data on all fish caught and released, no matter what species or size. The conservation community and organizations like the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission, Snook and Game Fish Foundation, University of Florida and others use the data to make science-based decisions on habitat management, stock assessment and other relevant issues. In STAR’s signature division, officials will release an average of four tagged redfish per coastal county throughout Florida. Registered adult anglers catching the first six tagged redfish, and using the STAR app to record their catch, are eligible for their choice of prizes including a new GMC Sierra or one of several Yamaha-powered boat packages including a Contender 22 Sport, Pathfinder 2200TRS, Maverick HPX-S, Sea Hunt 225 Ultra or the Carolina Skiff 21 Sport & Fish. Youth anglers will be eligible to participate in the tagged redfish division with the first two winners taking home a Carolina Skiff 16 JVX CC powered by a 40hp Yamaha and a Road King trailer. A new division to the 2017 STAR event, the Costa Kick Plastic Trash Division rewards participants who gather trash and debris from waterways and submit a photo entry with the 2017 free official measuring device. As with other divisions, participants will be eligible for a random drawing at the end of the 101 days of STAR for a $500 cash prize. Other divisions include Open, Ladies, Fly, Kayak, Lionfish and Professional Guides. Eligible species are spotted seatrout, snook, sheepshead, non-tagged redfish, cobia, dolphin and kingfish. Division winners are determined by a random drawing, a format that encourages participants of all ages to protect and conserve Florida’s fisheries. The STAR Youth Scholarship Division offers the opportunity to win one of twelve scholarships totaling $100,000. The event runs from Memorial Day, May 27 to Labor Day, Sept. 4 at 5 p.m. In 2016, more than 5,000 anglers registered for STAR. More than 150 tagged redfish were released throughout the state’s coastal waters, with more than 20 caught and submitted. For more information on STAR, or to register, visit www.ccaflstar.com. COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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The Gator Den is a brand new, 12 room motel located at Angler’s Resort, on the Withlacoochee River, Dunnellon, FL. We have a Bait & Tackle Shop, Pontoon and Jon Boat Rentals, Airboat Tours and the Blue Gator Tiki Bar Restaurant, all on premise making this a fisherman’s getaway. 12189 S Williams St Dunnellon, FL 34432 | www.AnglersResort.us Motel: 352-489-2397 Restaurant: 352-465-1635 Boat Rentals: 352-489-2397

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Snakehead Spawning Patterns

By Brandon Tourigny • The author displays a snakehead he caught that was guarding fry.

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ince discovered the existence of the species in Florida twenty years ago, it’s safe to say anglers across the state are getting an itch to target snakeheads. For anyone planning a fishing trip for these invaders, there is no better time than now to target them. Being a tropical species, snakeheads naturally prefer the hot spring and summer months in Florida, and with their spawn entering full swing in May and early June, snakehead anglers should be ready for the best bite of the year. Here I’ll share a few of my more successful tactics for catching snakeheads and observations I’ve made from fishing this time of year which I hope will provide you with as much action as it has for me. When snakeheads begin their spawn, they’ll cruise the shallowest parts of the canal or lake that they inhabit, so a lot of your fishing will be sight fishing. Early in the spawn, when I am looking for snakeheads that are paired up, the surest way to get them to bite is to reel a buzz frog up over their heads. These prespawn pairs will unleash a vicious strike on any topwater bait you throw at them. If you are able to land the first fish fast enough, the second fish will hang around long enough to throw another lure at it. Prespawn snakeheads can be a little harder to sneak up on once you have spotted them, though, since you are now dealing with trying to hide from two sets of eyes rather than one. Being able to make long, pinpoint-accurate casts can be a game changer for anglers trying to land a prespawn snake. Once the snakehead fry hatch, I have witnessed snakehead parents strike lures around their fry just as hard as prespawn fish, but I have also seen snakeheads guarding their fry be frustratingly picky. When you find yourself in a situation with a pair of snakeheads that have a bad case of locked jaw, you have to use lures that would attack their fry. Snakehead parents’ only interest is defending their fry, so trying to get the fish to chase down lures, like they would if they were hunting, is not necessarily the best card to play. I have found that when a jig or crawfish-imitating bait quietly drops into the middle of the fry, the fish’s parental instincts kick in and it will almost always attack the lure. There are so many creative ways to land snakeheads, so don’t just try my tactics. Get creative and experiment! These are a fun fish to target, which provide one of the best fish battles in freshwater. Good luck and tight lines! COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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YAMAHA

Rolls Out Exciting Developments For Offshore Anglers

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amaha has some exciting new developments in the marketplace this summer that should catch the eye of offshore anglers. The latest version of the venerable F350 outboard now offers five full years of limited warranty protection. Also, Yamaha’s Helm Master Integrated Boat Control System has a new feature that will make large boats powered by big outboards even easier to control. The newest version of Yamaha’s most powerful outboard, the new 5.3-liter F350C now provides five full years of limited warranty coverage, wrapping a refined outboard package with a list of benefits and features that are still unique in the marketplace nine years after the debut of the original F350. “The inclusion of five years of limited warranty coverage with the F350C underscores the reliability of the F350,” said Ben Speciale, president, Yamaha Marine Group. “We are confident that this benefit for our 5.3-liter V8 customers builds in exceptional value for Yamaha’s most powerful outboard on the market.” Yamaha’s F350 redefined offshore power in 2007 and still has little competition in its class. The first F350 offered an outboard capable of the raw thrust necessary for pushing larger and heavier offshore boats. Thousands of F350s later, there is still nothing like it. And for boaters looking to control all that power, the new and improved Helm Master Integrated Boat Control System makes fishing from and docking big boats a breeze. Yamaha Marine Group recently announced a new feature that gives its Helm Master Integrated Boat Control System even greater levels of control. With the Set Point boat positioning function, boaters now have the capability to integrate all boat control systems and then guide them with GPS navigation technology. “The introduction of Helm Master changed the way boaters think about controlling larger outboard-powered boats,” said Speciale. “Helm Master made docking less stressful and fishing on the open water more enjoyable. Set Point takes that functionality and precision to the next level.” Set Point is comprised of a suite of satellite-guided capabilities designed to improve the boater’s ability to fish, maneuver and simply enjoy life on the water. Using a unique dual-antenna GPS to provide Helm Master’s operating system more navigational information, the Set Point function provides even greater and more precise control. Set Point has three primary modes: Stay Point, Fish Point and Drift Point. Each Set Point mode provides a solution to the tricky maneuvering challenges boaters encounter every day. Stay Point keeps the boat positioned near a particular spot; it maintains a selected position and heading. This mode is particularly helpful when a boat must hold a position and heading, for example at a fuel dock or at a bridge opening. In adverse weather or high currents, Helm Master uses higher RPM and greater engine activity to keep the boat as close to the mark as possible, within a 75-foot circle of the set point. Fish Point enhances fishing options; it maintains a selected position, but not a heading, and primarily uses only idle RPM to do so. The Fish Point mode makes use of a captain’s knowledge in heading a boat into the current or wind, bow upstream or downstream, to maintain a heading. Under normal condi-

tions, the Set Point function will use no more than idle RPM to hold the Fish Point position, which means Fish Point operation is less likely to scare the fish. In stronger seas, Fish Point will attempt to keep the boat on the point selected using no more than the requested Fish Point RPM to do so, up to 2,500 RPM. Yamaha’s Shift Dampener System propellers play a role in keeping the boat on point quietly, too. Drift Point allows the boater to drift the boat with the wind or the current; it maintains a selected heading, but not a position. Drift Point mode is particularly useful to maintain a heading when drift fishing or kite fishing. Drift Point allows the boat to drift with the wind or current, but stay pointed in the heading chosen. Each Set Point mode is activated with the touch of a button. The Set Point control buttons are integrated into the new Helm Master joystick and use Yamaha’s new CL7 touch screen display to initially configure the operator’s preferences. Each Set Point mode is user-defined for the needs of individual boaters. Helm Master Set Point hardware includes a dual-antenna GPS and stern-mounted lighting that illuminates any time any mode of the SetPoint system is active. The Yamaha CL7 display has a 7-inch touch panel screen with full multi-function display (MFD) capability and connectivity. The display offers precise engine and boat systems data for up to four outboards on one screen, along with other MFD functions such as maps, fishfinder, and graphing capabilities using its built-in 10 MHz GPS. It is the primary display for Yamaha’s fully integrated Helm Master boat control system, and is the required point of access to configure Set Point. Contact your dealer about the latest version of the Helm Master or for information about a retrofit kit that will bring earlier Helm Master-equipped boats up to date with the new technology. For information on all of Yamaha’s industry-leading products, go to www.yamahaoutboards.com.

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MOTOR REVIEW Tohatsu Introduces New Colors For MFS40 and MFS50

In 2014, Tohatsu brought to market some of its most popular outboards to date with its 40 and 50hp four strokes, the MFS40 and the MFS50. Weighing less than any other outboard in their class, they have experienced tremendous success in the mid-range market. New for 2017, Tohatsu is offering these in-demand outboards in a new color, Beluga White. One of the coolest looking outboards on the market is now offered in both Aqua Marine Blue and Beluga White. Boaters now have the option to choose which color best fits with their boat. The MFS40 starts at just 209 pounds. This outboard is equipped with proven technology, including electronic fuel injection (EFI) and digital CD ignition, which provides quick throttle response, excellent fuel economy and very smooth rides on the water. The MFS40 also has a high output 21 amp alternator for superior battery charging. The adjustable steering friction and trim tab reduces your amount of steering effort, making for an easier and more enjoyable boating experience. Convenience is also covered with the 40hp four stroke’s

built-in freshwater flushing system, making routine flushing quick and easy. The 40hp EFI four stroke not only offers a more powerful ride while using less fuel, but is among the lightest on the water in its class. With proven reliability and performance, the MFS40 is every boater’s versatile choice for work, play or even once-in-a-lifetime memory making. Many of the same things can be said of the MFS50. It is the lightest weight motor possible, and it has been upgraded with an improved gear case with a lower gear ratio, giving you the increased low end torque your boat needs. This outboard also has variable idling speed control from 650 to 950 rpms. And the MFS50’s stainless steel water pump housing liner gives you outstanding durability. With the 50hp four stroke’s power to quickly reach your destination, exceptional fuel performance to keep gas costs down and proven electronic fuel injection technology for worry-free boating, you’ve never had a day on the water quite like this.

For more on Tohatsu’s complete lineup of outboards, see www.tohatsu.com/outboards/.

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BOAT REVIEW Piranha F2000

underway and the breeze out of your face. The incorporated padded cooler seat offers insulated storage for you meals and drinks or today’s catch. Built into the hull design is our transom pocket tunnel that allows you to get the engine jacked up or down to allow for a smooth dry ride in either shallow or deeper water. The F2000 deck design includes built in toe kick and spray chine to keep you on the boat and the water out. The F2000 is the ultimate fishing platform. Designed by Jesse Rhodes, of Rhodes Yacht Design, an avid inshore fisherman, it takes advantage of the newest hydrodynamics with simplistic style.

SPECIFICATIONS Piranha Boatworks of Sanford, Fla. has designed the ultimate fishing platform with its F2000 Flats/Bay boat. Drafting 6 to 8 inches, with a maximum of 150 hp, this sleek hull can get you to and from your favorite fishing grounds in short order. It offers all that Piranha Boatworks is famous for, a large forward casting deck, plenty of storage fore and aft and 6 under-gunnel rod holders. The deck is laid out with a large dry storage compartment forward and three storage wells aft. The aft wells are comprised of an aerated live well, release well and dry storage in a saddle bag configuration. The F2000’s large center console has space for all your flush mount electronics. The console grab rail and wind screen keep you steady while

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MOTOR REVIEW Suzuki Marine Introduces New Models To Outboard Lines

Suzuki Marine is expanding two of its most popular lines of outboards with new models to fill the needs of boaters and anglers. New SS-Series Models The performance-oriented SS-Series, with its signature matte-black paint job and distinctive graphics, is growing with a new 200hp four stroke and the availability of a 25-inch shaft length on its premier 250 SS V6. “People really like the performance matte black look and have been asking us to expand the line,” said Gus Blakely, vice president of sales for Suzuki Marine. “We’re happy to do that by adding the 200SS and making the 250SS available for more kinds of boats.” The Suzuki 200SS features Suzuki’s 200-horsepower inline 4-cylinder powerhead, with 175.0 cubic inch displacement, dual overhead cams and a 10.2:1 compression ratio for increased power and performance. Engine operations are managed by an onboard Engine Control Module and an array of sensors that control the engine’s multi-point sequential electronic fuel injection system and Lean Burn Control technology. The 200SS will come with conventional mechanical throttle and shift control and will be available in 20-inch and 25-inch shaft models. At just 518 lbs, this 4-cylinder outboard delivers V6 like performance in a more compact, lightweight package.

The availability of a 25-inch shaft model for the popular 250SS has been eagerly awaited. The V6 4-Stroke 250SS, with 4.0 liter displacement and a powerful 2.08:1 gear ratio, has built a solid reputation on the pro-bass circuit. With the addition of a 25-inch shaft length model, this high-powered outboard will find new application on bay boats, walleye boats, even the new breed of performance pontoon boats. New AP Advanced Series Models Suzuki has every right to be proud of the DF150AP and DF175AP, two new models in their toptier AP-Series. In addition to a long list of advanced features, these new 150- and 175-hp inline four cylinder outboards feature Suzuki Precision Control drive-by-wire throttle and shift, as well as Suzuki’s innovative Selective Rotation gear case. These outboards share their engineering DNA with Suzuki’s popular DF200AP 200-horsepower inline-four cylinder outboard. All three engines are built off of the same 175 cubic inch displacement inlinefour cylinder engine block. The new DF150AP and DF175AP boast the largest displacement in their respective horsepower classes. Engine performance is enhanced by a 10.2:1 compression ratio that generates optimal power, contributing to an impressive hole-shot and mid-range acceleration. A newly developed Semi-Direct Air Intake System further boosts power by providing cooler airflow to each cylinder. With the addition of these two models, Suzuki offers a wide range of new generation lightweight, compact, yet powerful inline four cylinder 4-stroke outboards. For more information on Suzuki’s full line of 4-stroke outboard motors, visit www.suzukimarine.com or call 714-996-7040.

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For details and the name of your nearest participating Suzuki Marine dealer, visit www.suzukimarine.com

Gimme Six Extended Protection promo is applicable to new Suzuki Outboard Motors from 25 to 300 HP in inventory which are sold and delivered to buyer between 4/01/17 and 6/30/17 in accordance with the promotion by a Participating Authorized Suzuki Marine dealer in the continental US and Alaska to a purchasing customer who resides in the continental US or Alaska. Customer should expect to receive an acknowledgement letter and full copy of contract including terms, conditions and wallet card from Suzuki Extended Protection within 90 days of purchase. If an acknowledgement letter is not received in time period stated, contact Suzuki Motor of America, Inc. – Marine Marketing via email: marinepromo@suz.com. The Gimme Six Promotion is available for pleasure use only, and is not redeemable for cash. Cash Rebates apply to qualifying purchases of select Suzuki Outboard Motors made between 4/01/17 and 6/30/17. For list of designated models, see participating Dealer or visit www.suzukimarine.com. Customer and participating Dealer must fill out the appropriate rebate form at time of sale. Customer will have the choice to either apply the cash rebate against the original dealer invoice (Suzuki will credit Dealer parts account) or have a check sent directly to the customer. There are no model substitutions, benefit substitutions, rain checks, or extensions. Suzuki reserves the right to change or cancel these promotions at any time without notice or obligation. * Financing offers available through Synchrony Retail Finance. As low as 5.99% APR financing for 60 months on new and unregistered Suzuki Outboard Motors. Subject to credit approval. Not all buyers will qualify. Approval, and any rates and terms provided, are based on credit worthiness. $19.99/month per $1,000 financed for 60 months is based on 5.99% APR. Hypothetical figures used in calculation; your actual monthly payment may differ based on financing terms, credit tier qualification, accessories or other factors such as down payment and fees. Offer effective on new, unregistered Suzuki Outboard Motors purchased from a participating authorized Suzuki dealer between 4/01/17 and 6/30/17. “Gimme Six”, the Suzuki “S” and model names are Suzuki trademarks or ®. Don’t drink and drive. Always wear a USCG-approved life jacket and read your owner’s manual. © 2017 Suzuki Motor of America, Inc.

COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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FRESHWATER

BOAT REVIEW CustomBilt Pondtoon

The Pondtoon is the perfect small-water boat for the avid river and pond angler, duck and bow hunter, as well as the family with children or grandchildren. All boats are all-welded aluminum construction made in the USA with premium options to meet every fisherman’s needs in boating. There are several styles to choose from that include: Fishing Series, Hunting Series, Pleasure Series, Farm/Pond Workboats, Search and Rescue and our new Camo boat. There are even wheelchair-accessible models Pondtoon boats are factory assembled in three standard sizes with options and additional features that allow you to equip the boat for your fishing and hunting style at a very affordable price. Contact us at 334-684-2210 or pondtoons@gmail.com with any questions to help you “customize” your very own CustomBilt Pondtoon boat.

SPECIFICATIONS LENGTH: 14’16” BEAM: 5’ to 6’ MAX HP: 9.9

CONSTRUCTION: .090 marine-grade aluminum BUILDER: Custombilt Pondtoons

WWW.BOATSANDFISHING.COM

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FRESHWATER $1200 IN-HOUSE REBATE OR FREE BOAT COVER BOSSMAN TECHNICAL POLING SKIFFS

18,950

FR $

“ I had the chance to test the new Bossman TailSpotter and I must say I was very impressed. I’ve run a lot of boats in my career and this boat is as good if not better than anything I’ve driven.” Capt. Mike Hakala, Aqua Dream Lures

SKIMMER TUNNEL HULL

21,900

FR $

Your Florida Bass Cat Headquarters

VISIT OKEECHOBEE

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SPIDER KING ROD HOLDERS

OUTRIGGERS

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100% ALUMINUM EASY INSTALLATION NO DRILLING NECESSARY GUNNEL MOUNT SPIDER RIGS www.SpiderKingRodHolders.com

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5/16/17 11:52 AM


FIELD TEST

Sea Eagle FishSUP FS126

Standup paddleboard fishing is trending, so we eagerly tested Sea Eagle’s new inflatable FishSUP FS126. Sea Eagle calls it super stable. We were super impressed. With a length of 12’6” and a width of 40”, it’s a spacious platform that’s tough enough to work hardened shorelines. Heavy duty .90 drop-stitch material covers the top, bottom and sides for superior protection against punctures and a 90” by 18” thick, camouflage EVA pad adds additional buffering while providing a non-slip footbed. An integral 36-inch ruler makes fish measurement a snap. We packed this rig in the trunk, hit the beach, and fully inflated it in less than 10 minutes. Smartly positioned D-rings tightly secured optional accessories including a swivel seat with Scotty rod holders, battery, 34-lb. thrust electric motor and forward mesh storage box with tube-style rod holders. An SUP paddle, kayak paddle, backpack, hand pump and repair kit come with the basic package. Price: $1099. For more information, call Sea Eagle at 800748-8066 M-F, 9-5 EST, or check out their website.

WWW.SEAEAGLE.COM

NEVER WAX AGAIN! Defender RESTORE AND PROTECT YOUR BOAT Poli Glow does what wax can’t! As seen on Ship Shape TV

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for more than 12 months with a finish that is “like new!”

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Record Channel Cat Caught In N.Y. Reported by Justin Walts

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PWC Fishing Towers

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ric Scordo, of Watertown, N.Y., is a trophy catfish hunter. On April 30, he achieved a long-held dream of breaking the New York state record for channel catfish when he boated a massive 35.25-pounder from Lake Ontario’s Chaumont Bay. Caught on live bait using an Okuma reel paired with an Ugly Stick rod and an Addya hook, the beast smashed the existing record by more than 3 pounds. The previous record, which stood since 2002, weighed 32.12 pounds and was caught from Brant Lake, a 1,300acre reservoir in the Hudson River drainage. Scordo is a little bit of a fanatic about catch and release. The philosophy makes sense for someone specializing in large catfish, as it can take these fish decades to grow to state record size. Scordo was determined to release his record fish alive. So after it was weighed on a certified scale at Chaumont Hardware, the fish was taken to Chaumont Bay Marina where assistance was provided in keeping the fish alive and healthy. It was kept in a bait tank for a full day before a state biologist made it out for verification. After the record was verified, Scordo nurtured the fish to recovery and released it back into Chaumont Bay. An impressive gathering of local media were on-hand to video the fish’s release. Check out Chaumont Bay Marina on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/chaumontbaymarina/?rf=120452787968030

For more on this record catch, go to

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You could get a discount when you combine your auto and boat policies.

for your boat geico.com | 1-800-865-4846 | Local Office Some discounts, coverages, payment plans and features are not available in all states or all GEICO companies. Boat and PWC coverages are underwritten by GEICO Marine Insurance Company. Multi-Policy Discount available to auto insureds that have purchased a boat policy through the GEICO Marine Insurance Company. GEICO is a registered service mark of Government Employees Insurance Company, Washington, D.C. 20076; a Berkshire Hathaway Inc. subsidiary. © 2017 GEICO

COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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Use Coupons: In-Store, HarborFreight.com orCOASTALANGLERMAG.COM 1-800-423-2567 • THEANGLERMAG.COM I *Original coupon only. No use on prior purchases after 30 days from original purchase or without original receipt. Valid through 10/1/17.

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UR-Cut

Fishmaster Launches Best Catch Contest for Customers Nationwide

F

i s h m a s t e r, creators of the first universal folding T-Top, has launched the Fishmaster Best Catch Contest. This contest offers Fishmaster customers and anglers throughout the U.S the opportunity to win a custom fiberglass reproduction of their award-winning catch crafted by American Fish Taxidermy. Contestants can submit unlimited pictures of their catch for a chance to win monthly prizes and to become eligible to win this grand prize, valued at $500 to $1,000. Entrants are encouraged to submit as many photos of different catches as possible. The contest kicked off Saturday, April 1, 2017 and ends on Saturday, Sept. 30, 2017. “We design our products with the ultimate goal of helping our fellow anglers reel in the perfect catch,” said Greg Spivia of Fishmaster. “We want to showcase our loyal customers with the fish they caught in a way they can remember forever, through partnering with the most talented fish taxidermist in the U.S.—American Fish Taxidermy.” Through the contest, Fishmaster is awarding monthly prizes through September. Monthly prizes will be announced via email and Facebook on the first Monday of each month. The Grand Prize Winner will be announced on Oct. 15 via email with public notice on Fishmaster’s Facebook page. Monthly winners are eligible for the Grand Prize; however, our independent team of anglers will review all submissions before naming the big winner. Fishmaster encourages all interested parties to learn more about the Best Catch Contest, official rules, and how to enter at https://fishmaster. com/bestcatch.

BIG ICE

MAKE YOUR OWN ICE!

TRAYS

-Makes six 4” Cubes -10 lbs. of Ice per Tray -Last twice as long! -No more plastic bags -Save money by easily reusing

Ergonomically perfect. Virtually non-slip. Unmatched comfort. Unmatched control. Takes minutes to do.

UR-Cut features the same legendary DEXSTEEL, super-sharp edge, and just-right flexibility that you are used to with Dexter... 1.Dip handle in boiling water for 2 minutes. 2. Dip in cold water for 1 second. 3. Grip and form handle for 10 seconds. 4. Put back in cold water for 10 seconds and your done.

dexteroutdoors.com

BOAT REVIEW Mitzi Skiffs Mitzi 17

bigice.com contact@bigice.com

contact@bigice.com | 504-710-7766

JOIN

ONLINE

• Regional Reports • Featured Articles • Fishing Tips • Giveaways

If you shallow-water fish and need a flats boat, Mitzi Skiff is the boat for you. All Mitzi Skiff models float very shallow, they pole easily and track straight. With a minimum of horsepower, they are quick and provide a very smooth and dry ride. Mitzi Skiffs offers several models to fit an angler’s needs and budget. Their Mitzi 17 is perfect for the most demanding shallow-water anglers and charter captains. From its ability to get you home comfortably to its ultra-stealthy, no-hull-slap hull, it’s truly an angler’s boat. The 17’s CAD-designed hull has performance unmatched by any other shallow-draft skiff, at any price. It will do 45mph with a 60 hp engine, and it is capable of fishing 3 or 4 people. It offers lots of storage, easy maintenance and is remarkably dry. With a wide bow area and 11-degree deadrise hull, these boats take you to the shallow areas to find the fish and across open water as well. Mitzi Skiffs came from the idea that flats fishing didn’t have to be a rich man’s sport. Mitzi skiff is a boat that all of us can afford. They are lightweight, all composite, shallow water workhorses. There are many options available including center consoles, live wells, built-in tanks, Power Poles and much more. Professional captains guide out of Mitzi Skiffs every day, even days that are less ideal conditions.

SPECIFICATIONS

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Fillet Knives

The only custom moldable handle fillet knife.

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LENGTH: 16’10” BEAM: 77” DRAFT: 7”

WEIGHT: 550 lbs. FUEL: 12 gallons MAX HP: 70

WWW.MITZISKIFFS.COM

COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

5/16/17 11:52 AM


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YAMAHA OUTBOARD’S

SEASON OF SAVINGS SALES EVENT

OFFER VALID FROM

MAY 1, 2017–JUNE 16, 2017 Get the season started with a reliable Yamaha four-stroke outboard. For a limited time, purchase an eligible, select, new Yamaha 2.5-hp to 175-hp† four-stroke outboard, and receive:

750

$ ELIGIBLE FOUR-STROKE OUTBOARDS

DEALERSHIP CREDIT TOWARD THE PURCHASE OF GOODS/SERVICES

175 HP†

$750 based on MSRP

115-150 HP†

$500 based on MSRP

60-90 HP

$400 based on MSRP

30-50 HP

$300 based on MSRP

20-25 HP

$200 based on MSRP

8-15 HP

$150 based on MSRP

2.5-6 HP

$125 based on MSRP

UP TO

The following four-stroke models are NOT eligible for this promotion: VF175XA, VF115XA, F90LB, F90XB, F90JB, F75LB, F25SMHC, F25LMHC, F25SWHC, F25LWHC, F25SWC, F25LWC, F25LC and F25LWTC.

IN DEALER CREDIT

Toward the purchase of additional goods or services from your authorized, participating Yamaha outboard dealer.*

See your authorized participating Yamaha outboard dealer today for details! Other restrictions and conditions may apply. *PROGRAM TERMS AND CONDITIONS: Consumer benefit for purchasing a new (unused not previously warranty registered) eligible Yamaha 2.5 to 175 HP four-stroke outboard is a credit based on MSRP toward the purchase of goods and/or services at the authorized, participating dealer that sold the outboard, at no extra cost to consumer. NO BENEFIT SUBSTITUTIONS. The following four-stroke models are NOT eligible for this promotion: VF175XA, VF115XA, F90LB, F90XB, F90JB, F75LB, F25SMHC, F25LMHC, F25SWHC, F25LWHC, F25SWC, F25LWC, F25LC and F25LWTC. To be eligible, outboards must also have been manufactured since January 2010. Promotion is only applicable from authorized participating Yamaha Outboard dealers in the U.S.A. sold to purchasing consumers residing in the U.S.A. Promotion is limited to available stock in dealer inventory that is sold, PDI completed, delivered and warranty registered on YMBS by the dealer in accordance with Yamaha’s promotion and warranty registration requirements during applicable dates. No model substitutions, benefit substitutions, extensions or rain checks will be allowed. Outboards sold or provided for commercial, camp, resort, rental, promotional/demo, scratch-and-dent, government agency, competition, tournament or sponsorship use are not eligible. This promotion cannot be used in conjunction with any other Yamaha offer. Some exceptions may apply. See authorized, participating Yamaha dealer for complete details. Yamaha reserves the right to change or cancel this promotion at any time. Other restrictions and conditions apply. REMEMBER to always observe all applicable boating laws. Never drink and drive. Dress properly with a USCG-approved personal floatation device and protective gear. © 2017 Yamaha Motor Corporation, U.S.A. All rights reserved.

YamahaOutboards.com

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