Wreck Fishing and Deep Dropping
Making a day out of wreck and deep dropping can be an action-packed way to fish off Fort Lauderdale. Seeing the fish strike and the rod bending over with line peeling off the reel will certainly excite any angler. Uncertain of which fish might come up from the deep. Each fish has a signature style of fighting. Some will want to dig in and swim towards the structure while others will make horizontal and vertical runs. This is where skilled angling techniques will land your prized trophy.
We have an abundance of wrecks, structures and deep dropping spots off Fort Lauderdale. The best conditions are north current with an easterly wind. The conditions are important and affect how the bait is presented and how the fish will feed. Done properly with the right tackle, angling and boat handling can produce a great catch such as grouper, amberjack, snapper, barracuda, tilefish and sharks.
Catching fresh live bait does increase the chances when wreck fishing. We do have success jigging lures but I prefer live bait.
When targeting amberjack and grouper, we use a monofilament leader with a large circle hook bridled to the live bait which has proven to be a successful rig. Sometimes using lighter mono or smaller circle hooks pending on the conditions such as light current or clear skies. On the other hand, we also increase the size of the mono and use wire or cable for larger fish. Amberjack can weigh up to 130 pounds and Warsaw groupers can weigh over 400 pounds.
When traveling from one spot to the next, we fish a couple high speed lures. Since we are already in good country, why not try to land a nice wahoo or tuna.
Deep dropping for vermillion and yellow eye snappers are often included in a day of wreck fishing. Many of the snapper spots are relatively close to the wrecks. Using a five circle hook rig with fresh cut bait works the best. When the snappers are biting good it is not uncommon to bring up five at once.
Fishing off Fort Lauderdale there are many wrecks to choose from and depending on the depth of the wreck will determine which fish to target.
We can fly a couple kites with live bait all while bottom fishing. Maintaining the live baits for any passing sailfish or mahi-mahi, this is a good method for surface and bottom fishing.
Whether deep dropping in 800 feet of water for golden tilefish or using live ballyhoo targeting muttons on a ship wreck, fishing off Fort Lauderdale provides a wide range of opportunity for all anglers.