Seas: 1-3 feet (rollers)
Winds: 5-10 SSE
Temp: 78 F
Viz: 30-35 feet
We got in late Friday night and did a little unloading and setup for our first full weekend before hitting the sack around 3am. I was up early anyway and started cleaning up and laying out some of the items that we stored all winter in the RV's storage compartments. My brother-in-law rolled in to the campground around 8:30a or so and we began laying out the astro turf (so nobody complains about how hard or rocky the ground is) and the other necessary equipment for successful weekend camping (like barbecues and stuff). High slack was supposed to be around 12:00-12:30p so we figured we had some time to get all this out of the way before heading out.
We headed out around 11:45a hoping to get a jump on the tide and we were pretty much dead on. The tide was still coming in, but nothing that you couldn't work against so we jumped in and got underway. We swam along for a while passing over a large number of lega but small mangroves and hogfish. Pretty much all the grouper we saw were juveniles and well under size, but there were a number of them too.
After about 30 minutes in water we each had one nice size mangrove and a couple of hogs so we decided to move on and out as the tide had already switched. The full moon was wreaking its usual havoc on the tide and slack was no more than 10 minutes. In actuality we missed the slack because it was so short that it happened while we were moving between spots.
We jumped in at our next spot and I immediately saw a Goliath sitting in one of our ledges. She wasn't that big (maybe 25lbs), so I figured she could easily be sharing that ledge with someone I would be able to shoot. As I peered over the ledge, I got one glimpse of a good legal black grouper and she immediately vacated the premises. I thought for sure I had lost her, but luckily she holed right up so I was able to chase her see her in the hole. It was a little dirty, and unfortunately my first shot was a gut shot, but as soon as the hole cleared up again, I was able to land her.
We made it back to the campground where we found that our dolphin fishing friends had a very good day and we were going to get to freeze our catch and eat fresh dolphin that night. The menu items that night were appetizers of grilled lemon pepper dolphin a' la Roly, Bobby's famous blackened dolphin and a main course of deep fried dolphin fingers. It was quite the meal ordeal!