CAPT. JOE PALERMO: Offshore Fishing Trip To ‘Other Side’ Yields Yellowfin Bonanza
By Capt. Joe Palermo // May 15, 2016
Port Canaveral offshore fishing
BREVARD COUNTY • PORT CANAVERAL, FLORIDA – Port Canaveral is known for some of the best offshore fishing the East Coast has to offer.
From bottom fishing to trolling, anglers can easily satisfy their offshore appetite for a wide variety of species.
Although not easily reachable for most boats, yellowfin tuna, which range anywhere from 30 pound to 100-plus pound, are at the top of this list.
Known as the “Other Side,” meaning the other side of the gulf stream, yellowfin and a variety of other species feed in the cooler waters just east of the gulf stream ranging from 60-100 miles from Port Canaveral.
Starting in the spring, these fish pursue bait from the Bahamas and track north throughout the summer. Although this seems like a lot of ground to cover, finding these reel screaming pelagics relies on modern technology.
In the early 90s a few Port Canaveral charter captains discovered that standard navigation radars would pick up bird packs feeding in these waters.
Since this discovery, many center console boats have been designed around large radars, large fuel tanks and speed to specifically target this well sought-after species.
By the late 90s Port Canaveral had several charter boats offering these long-range trips and it was a normal sight to see weekenders filleting a limit of tuna. However, since the price hikes in fuel, many anglers have opted to just fish the west side of the stream and the charter fleet offering these trips has dwindled down to one or two boats.
“For the past 15 years as a charter captain out of Port Canaveral, I have been blessed to experience this fishery to it’s fullest on both charters and “fun” trips, and it has always been a dream of mine to offer “Other Side” trips to the public,” said Capt. Joe Palermo of Sea Wrangler Charters.
‘HOOKED UP’ ALL DAY
This dream became a reality with a new addition to the Sea Wrangler fleet, a 34-foot Hines Farley express boasting over 1,000 hp and a 29-knot cruising speed. After some modifications and putting some hours on the motors, she made her maiden voyage to the “Other Side.”
“Although we fought some storms, we were hooked up all day and were able to land six yellowfin ranging from 65-75 pounds, some blackfin tuna, a large bull dolphin and skipjacks, and jumped off a blue marlin,” said Palermo.
“I’m looking forward to sharing this fishery with my charters for the rest of this season and seasons to come.”