Derek Neppo and his wife are down in South Florida visiting and vacationing in Fort Lauderdale and recently chartered the “Happy Day Today” Topshotfishing team. The conditions were very favorable for catching Sailfish. We had a brisk wind from the East Northeast blowing 12-15 mph and the seas running 3-5 ft., pushing the dark blue indigo waters into 60 ft. of water off of Fort Lauderdale’s reef system.
We left the marina around 7:35 am and within 20 minutes; we located just at the inlet buoy which is located in 115’ of water. The sea buoy located off Ft Lauderdale is great deep sea spot to fish because of the bait that congregate around the buoy. Then of course we have the pelagic species like Sailfish, Shark, King Mackerel and Mahi feeding in and around the area.
We had a dozen Goggle Eyes in our bait well which is always a beautiful thing, the Gogs make for superb bait when targeting Sailfish along our South Florida coast line. The Gogs are best utilized fishing them out of the kite. As we were at the sea buoy, one thing to check for is current, the buoy is a great indicator of current and if any at all. There was no current, so there is a rule of thumb “little or no current, position yourself over an artificial wreck or some type of structure”. Artificial wreck/structures will hold the bait and in return predators have a place to feed. So we headed to a wreck that was close by sitting in 175’ of water. I set out two kites with two Goggle Eyes on each kite totaling 4 live baits on the surface and one down deep using led to get the bait deep.

We waited for the Sailfish’s arrival, after an hour and a half with no bites (sitting right on top of the wreck) we decided to make a move to another wreck. Putting out the same setup of 4 surface live baits and one down deep, within ten minutes of fishing, the Sailfish made his appearance on the right long kite!!!! Dorsal out of the water, ripping around trying to get the bait in the Sails mouth, what a great sight for all of us to see. The Sail finally got a bite on the Gog, the mate Dave Jackson fed the Sailfish and waited for the Sailfish to start ripping off line and just before Dave felt the fish about to jump, he came tight and we had the Sail connected and FISH ON!!!!
When using circle hooks and using J hooks, there are different methods to catch Sails off Fort Lauderdale, in this scenario, the Sail started walking off with the bait at a slow rate which soon accelerated, Jackson came tight the fish went ballistic, the Sail was jumping out of the water, and even over other lines. The fish was showing his neon gleaming body. Now Derek was on the rod as this was a ripping good time and he was fighting the fish. Twenty-five minutes later, the Sailfish was brought close to the boat and we were able to bill the fish, with no harm, lifting the fish in the boat, taking some photos and letting the fish swim away to be caught day fishing out of Fort Lauderdale.
This ends another successful and adventurous deep sea fishing charter on the Happy Day Today with the Topshotfishing team, if interested in booking a charter, contact Captain Zsak at - 954-439-8106 – or email us by through the website at

Last edited by topshotfishing; 02/16/12 05:06 AM.

Owner/ Captain Tom Zsak