Author's interest in blue-water fishing prompted article on deep-sea fishing in three major bodies of water: Atlantic, Pacific and Gulf of Mexico.
Deep-Sea Fishing: We’re Gonna Need a Bigger Boat
So you think you may want to go deep-sea fishing. What kind of fishing did you have in mind? There’s deep-sea fishing strictly aimed to bring home a cooler full of filets for table fare. Perhaps instead you’re looking to fulfill a lifelong dream to pit your brawn against that of one of the finny giants of the sea, strictly for the fight and a photo. Assuming you want deep-sea action within continental United States waters, you can fish the West Coast, East Coast or the Gulf of Mexico.
Assuming you’re not planning to bring your own boat with you, you’ll obviously either have to rent one, charter one or buy a spot at the rail on a party boat. Regardless of the way chosen, be prepared to spend some significant time and money, as deep-sea fishing usually involves miles of travel over water to get to the game. With marine fuel priced upwards of $4-5 per gallon, even a near-shore venture in a small rented boat can take a half day or more and cost you upwards of $200. A typical half-day deep-sea fishing charter with captain in a mid-size boat runs $350-400 plus a fuel surcharge; the longer the ride, the higher the bill. And for long-range offshore fishing, a typical big-game sportfisher yacht with captain and mate will bring the tab up to $1000 per day plus fuel. It is not uncommon today for the fuel add-on fee for such a craft to exceed the charter boat tab. And please be prepared to tip the crew as well.
So, let’s say you’re planning for a Texas trip; fishing enthusiasts in the know frequently choose Galveston as their embarkation port because of the diverse species roaming the waters nearby, near-shore or long-range offshore, from favorite food fish like snapper, grouper, seatrout and flounder to big game, like sailfish, tuna, shark, tarpon or wahoo. Available Galveston deep-sea fishing supply, techniques and gear depend on the targeted fish, from still-fishing with light tackle and live bait to trolling lures with big-game rod and reel.
If in Florida, it’s worth the ride to Key West to enjoy fishing in what the locals call the “Fishing Capital of the World.” The Atlantic waters nearby are home to dozens of species that will either make fabulous table fare, or alternately a hardcore, reel-screaming, rod-doubling lifetime experience. Scores of Florida deep-sea fishing charter boats of any size, with knowledgeable captain/guides will get you to the fish, show you how to catch them, and even provide all the deep-sea fishing gear, including rods, reels, lures, bait and chum.
Deep-sea fishing San Diego style should also be considered if you want to ply the Pacific’s waters for its bounty. It is clearly one of the top deep-sea fishing ports in the world. In addition to all the varieties of boats, fishing styles, gear and target species mentioned for Galveston and Key West, San Diego is also renown for it’s multiday long-range deep-sea fishing expeditions targeting huge albacore and yellowfin tuna hundreds of miles out to sea. You don’t need to catch many hundred-pound-plus fish to satisfy not only the desire to win a hard fight, but also fill multiple coolers with tasty food for yourself and family, friends and neighbors when you return home. But don’t forget to bring money.
If your budget and or time won’t permit that deep-sea fishing trip you crave, there’s a very inexpensive alternative you can enjoy in your own home.
There are readily available games and software that enable you to use your computer to enjoy a virtual deep-sea fishing experience. To find one, simply Google “virtual deep sea fishing.”