Capt. Brant's Fishing Report
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"Next Redfish Adventure" | OIFC | 04/18/15
Back at it again. I left out this morning and flew down to New Orleans from Wilmington to begin the next volume of my redfish adventures. This week is the first official event of the 2015 season for the HT Elite Redfish Series. The last tournament was an open but this is the first of three of main events. It's being hosted by the Boomtown Casino in Harvey just outside of New Orleans. The actual tournament doesn't start until Thursday so for the next several days I'll be scouting.
I will be fishing on the west side of the Mississippi River this week. Once I got to New Orleans today I picked up the boat and headed south to Venice, LA. Venice is at the very tip of LA and is where we come to fish offshore a lot. I wanted to scout down here for a day or so and then I'll likely go west towards Houma. They've had a ton of rain down here over the last week so it's likely going to be pretty tough. The water will be dirty and high. Those fish are somewhere and I aim to find them.
I'm going to try and do a Facebook video update on the OIFC facebook page daily if I can get good enough service. Other than that I'll do my best to keep posting update here. In the meantime be sure to check out www.theredfishseries.com and see what this HT Elite Series is all about. Also, follow Ht Elite Series on Facebook for daily updates, angler interviews and all sorts of other cool info on the tour.
Capt. Barrett McMullan
"Stream bound" | | 04/18/15
Hosting a stream fishing school. Light wind, little rain- SE swell a bit of a pest so running south toward the macMarlen ledges. Hoping for a good day
"" | | 04/16/15
The Carolina Cat with Capts. OC and Derek is returning to the dock from a
stream trip with the Doug Stancil party. We had wahoo, mahi, and à few king
mackerel while trolling and snapper and bass from the bottom. Pics to
"Gulf Stream Fishing School- THIS WEEKEND" | OIFC | 04/14/15
I have 2 spots open for the Gulf Stream fishing class this weekend. Class is at the OIFC on Friday from 5-7pm and fishing is hands-on in the Stream all day Saturday with me. This class is designed to help you become more effective at Gulf Stream fishing on your boat in the Gulf Stream. The weather is looking right and the Wahoo and Mahi have been biting !
Call 910-575-3474 to book
Visit http://www.oifc.com/GulfStreamFishing101 for class details
ONLY 2 SPOTS LEFT1!!!
Besides the school, we do have boats open to fish this weekend, so don't miss the chance to get on the water.
Capt. Brant McMullan
"Jolly Mon VIP" | OIFC | 04/14/15
This is your offical halftime notice. For all of those invited but not paid to fish in the Jolly Mon VIP, you have 15 days left to pay your entry before your spot will be forfeited to the wait list. See current list of paid and unpaid and wait list.
CLICK HERE to join wait list (email name, boat name and interest in joining VIP wait list)
CLICK HERE to contact Capt. Derek regarding making payment for your entry. This is not a "check's in the mail" deal. If you entry is not recieved by May 1, your spot will be forfeited. NO exceptions.
JOLLY MON 2014 TOP 25
FALL BRAWL 2014 TOP 25
Robert Galletto -PAID
Tommy McAlister - PAID
Corey Durako - PAID
Jeff Morris - PAID
Ashley Widenhouse - PAID
Zach Faulkner - PAID
Bruce Brown - PAID
Corey Durako - PAID
Phillip Brock - PAID
Jolly Mon VIP invite list 2014
Jolly Mon VIP Waiting list
1 Jim Alexander
Capt. Brant McMullan
2 Brandon Sauls
3 Al Fulford
4 Larry Deacon
5 Inlet View
6 Brian Allen
7 Andrew Pepsny
8 Jody Staley/Salty Daze
9 Neil Newton/ High cotton
10 Ken Ritch
11 Eddie Julian
12 Patrick Bellamy
13 Jeremy Harrelson
14 Brent Gainey
15 Jimmy Turlington
16 Mike McDuffie
17 Jeff Beck
18 Will King
19 Troy mccary
20 Brent Stewart
21 Toby Russ
22 Matt Ward
23 Ty Cobb
24 Andrew Duskie
25 Al Orcutt
26 Austin Aycock
27 Rich Carcich
28 Ronnie McLean
29 Paul Benik
30 Mike Edwards
31 Michael Pruitt
32 Rich Dobkin
"" | Choice of Two / OIFC | 04/14/15
Had the oppurtunity to take a fun day of fishing out on the hammer time this past week. Fishing was good we ended up with 7 wahoo missed at least that many , 3 yellowfin , and 1 blackfin . The action was pretty good throughout the whole day and it seemed the wahoo didnt care what colors, they were just hungry..
Capt. Corey Bellamy
,Corey Bellamy Team Choice of Two/OIFC
"Wahoo at the Blackjack" | Do Work / OIFC | 04/12/15
Allen Hinson landed this wahoo Thursday on the Miss Reagan Thursday while fishing with George and Will Mullins at the Blackjack on a ballyhoo with a purple and black skirt. He said they had a nice mahi but it jumped and pulled the hooks.
Capt. Rickey Beck
"Back From A Ski Trip" | Do Work / OIFC | 04/12/15
~~Had some old buddies show up today to go fishing with me. Caught a few trout and flounder. Chris Brownlee and Brian Taylor - these guys are a traveling comedy show!! Had a great time catching up-Brandon Sauls
Capt. Rickey Beck
"Local Action" | Do Work / OIFC | 04/11/15
The pictures below are of the 1st snowy grouper Crystal Babson has ever caught.
The 3rd picture is from Wendell Barnett of the "Empty Pockets". Wendell reported the biggest was 60#.
Capt. Rickey Beck
"Proof that they're out there" | OIFC World Cat / Carolina Cat | 04/10/15
Just two days ago (4/8) the Dahlberg family, captain Ben and I traveled 60 miles in search of warm water and hungry fish. The plan was to target wahoo and blackfin tuna in an area known as the steeples. 5am came early and we were off to the blue water.
Capt. Derek Treffinger
Upon arrival, we set out a mixed spread and began the waiting game. The water was right yet the baitfish were scarce. Until off in the distance we spotted a few birds circling a particular area just a few hundred yards off the numbers. Before we even made it to the birds, long rigger popped, short rigger, other long rigger and planer rods all went off. To my surprise, they were all hooked to mahi on the other end. Not huge gaffers yet nice 10lb fish. The fish were caught and high fives went around. Good start – now we need a wahoo. We reset our spread and once again began the waiting game. I decided to make a few passes on the northern side of the numbers when we had a short strike on one of the long rigger baits. Ben quickly dropped back and immediately hooked up. Line poured off the reel as we began our turn towards the fish. “Gotta be a hoo” Ben stated as the fish made the blistering run. After about a 40 minute fight, 12 year old Blake Dahlberg brings in a 60 pound wahoo in gaff range. Once again we gave high fives and reset our spread. This time we had hopes of completing our slam of dolphin, wahoo and tuna. Unfortunately we found out the tuna had other plans. We trolled almost everything in my bucket. Feathers, plugs, green machine and even a few of my home made creations – nothing. With our heads still high we eased inshore to do some bottom fishing.
We began dropping in 85 feet of water on some bottom I had stumbled upon while traveling out to the steeples. To my surprise it was loaded with fish. Big beeliners, sea bass and silver snappers made up our first few drops. Then out of nowhere Mr. Dahlberg gets a tug on the line he would never forget. The fish quickly began to make its ascent towards the surface which signaled cobia to me. After another 30 minute fight Ben sticks the gaff in a 55lb cobia. The trip was made after that. The fish box was filled and the Dahlberg’s were happy – successful day on the water. However I would like to say a special thanks to the Dahlberg’s. It was their first time to the Gulf Stream yet they acted like it was their 50th trip out there. Class act group that truly made my job easy as a captain.
In addition to our bounty of fish, other boats that traveled to the Gulf Stream had success as well. Wahoo, blackfin tuna and mahi made up most of the other boat’s fish boxes. Therefore, be sure to think about the Gulf Stream fishing before you book your next charter. This style of fishing is high impact, controlled chaos when the lines go off. Definitely a monumental experience. Call 910-575-3474 to reserve your charter today.
"Day two HT Gulfport Open" | OIFC | 04/10/15
Wow what a difference a day makes. Despite a doom and gloom forecast, the weather broke right at daybreak and we had the most perfect conditions possible for redfishing in Louisiana. Calms winds and no clouds.
After yesterday's debacle/adventure I put the pieces back together and struck out again this morning across Lake Borgne. This time I wised up and left my GPS in my bag until I crossed the big water. It wasn't flat but manageable. Once across the lake I opted to try a secluded marsh area known as Reggio. This place is know to be either "on" or "off". Today it was on. From the time I sat down until the time I picked up to come home it was non stop. I sight fished hundreds of redfish today. It was exhausting but fun. Thank goodness for a day like this. I needed it. I had two perfect 27" slot fish but couldn't get that one 30" kicker I needed. I ended up with two 27 inchers and a 28" fish for 23.95 which put me into 10th place. It was an awesome day of fishing that was long overdue. It wasn't completely without a few twists and turns though.
First, I got to experience that feeling some of us have experienced when you have 40lb king mackerel at the boat and you reach out to gaff him just as he shakes his head and spits the hook. I had a perfect fish I had been watching and trying to get to eat for about 3 minutes. Finally I hooked him, stumbled down off my tower, tripped over my tackle bag, landed on my head, kept the fish on and reached over to net him just as he took a dive under the boat and spit the hook. I was by myself and nobody was there to experience my pain so I went ahead and let out a few involuntary "hollars" followed by some descriptive adjectives directed at the fish and the situation. That one would've helped my cause. The next issue came in the form of fish care. I had just a few minutes left to fish and I caught a decent fish that allowed me to cull the smallest one in my livewell. I put the new fish directly in the well just like the others but this one had a buoyancy problem. He would not swim, but instead would roll over and go belly up. I stayed an extra 20 minutes trying to revive him. He seemed alive but being belly up, it wouldn't be long until he croaked. A dead fish carries a .75lb penalty. I had an hour and half ride back to the check in and I was determined to keep this fish alive. So, every 3 miles I would stop the boat, climb down from the tower and turn the redfish back over and get him reoriented. I did this what felt like a hundred times. The fish made it to the check in alive and we were both greatful for eachother after having spent some serious quality time together.
It wasn't a victorious day but it was respectable. I still haven't cracked the code on how to get over the hump. I recall the same issue in the early days of king mackerel tournament fishing. The secret is in the details and I'm just not sure what those details are right now.
The first official Elite Series event is in a couple weeks in Bayou Segnette. I'll be back at again working hard and no doubt having an adventure!
Capt. Barrett McMullan
"Day one in the books" | OIFC | 04/09/15
Man, it's too bad there isn't a hidden camera on my boat during these one man redfish tournaments. I swear I can't get a day where it's not a drama fest, action packed, calamity of errors.
I start off this morning in my tower boat headed across Lake Borne towards Delacroix, LA. The tower boat is a flat bottom so it's not made for big water. Lake Borgne is big water. I was beaten to a pulp. Halfway thru the run, my gps bracket gave up so I had to zip tie my gps to dash for the rest of the run. Next my seat dismantled itself which made for an interesting run the rest of the way trying to hold it in place.
Somehow I miscalculated the distance but it ended up being about a 65 mile run. The first 35 was rough as hell and the next 30 was fine except for the eye piercing rain at 45mph. I finally arrived to the A spot and immediatley saw a few fish. Unfortunately they didn't want to eat and then it got tough. The wind picked up to 20 knots and combined with the clouds and rain, it made seeing the fish next to impossible. I spent a lot of my fishing time trying to make my A spot work. I finally caught a 6 1/2 lber but time was getting low and I needed two more fish. I made the move to my B spot and was disappointed with very few fish. I saw a couple nice ones but they snubbed me and I was still stuck on one fish. So, time was getting low and I had to put some fish in the boat. I made the call to buck up and run another 10 miles to C spot. I didn't feel like these fish would do me much good in the tournament but desperate times call for desperate measures. I had an hour left to fish when I got there and immediately put a 4 1/2lber in the boat. A few minutes later I caught a 29" 10lber which was good because we were allowed to keep one up to 30". At least I now had my 3 fish limit in the boat. I fished a little while longer and saw a decent number of fish but no takers.
It was time to make the 2 hr run back to the check in. This was not without drama. The first mistake was a wrong turn which was no big deal. I made it a big deal though when I tried to whip the boat back around at wide open throttle. The boat pretty much lost controll and skidded sideways until it stopped on top of an island in the marsh. Oh crap. I jumped out onto the island which happened to look like a great spot for an alligator to live. I tried to push the boat back in the water but it wouldn't budge. I was however able to swing it side to side so I simply rotated the direction of the stern so the motor would be in the water and the rest of the boat was on land. I jumped back in the boat and laid on the reverse throttle until it caught and pulled me off. Close one. I then made the run back on the inside rather than going thru Lake Borgne as the wind had now picked up significantly. This was a mistake because the waterway I had to ride in was straight with the wind so I had 2+ ft following sea which beat me to death. Finally, I got to the spot where I could cut through the marsh and hook up to the more protected intercoastal waterway. As I approached the cut I noticed the water moving in a weird way so I stopped just in time to float right on top of a concrete wall that was 6" below the water. No reason to stop now. Give it more gas. I pushed myself across the concrete wall and I'm off again. Having traveled 70+ miles now and getting close to the check in my heart sank when I saw the last obstacle. I had never traveled this way and I came to an old abandoned swing bridge. I'm in a tower boat and the bridge was low clearance. You can imagine what I was thinking when I came around the corner and saw that. I eased up to it and saw it would be close. I had to stand on the tower and push the boat down as I floated underneath. After all that, I made it to the check in!
The weigh in was an hour away from check in. We trailered the boats with our fish to the Gulfcoast Boat Show and weighed in by truck/trailer/boat. My weight was just over 21lbs. I'm in 12th place and about 4lbs out of the lead. It's a fairly large gap to close but I'm going to give it hell again tomorrow. I can pretty much guarantee it will be another epic adventure.
Tune into www.theredfishseries.com tomorrow around 5pm to see the weigh in.
Capt. Barrett McMullan
"Gulf Stream Yesterday" | OIFC World Cat / Carolina Cat | 04/09/15
Gulf Stream action was steady yesterday. Great fishing with a great crew - will report in full tomorrow.
The weather is looking good for saturday April 11th. We are doing a make up charter deal for $425 per person -- need 4 people to go. Please call 910-575-3474 to reserve a spot today!
Capt. Derek Treffinger
"HT Elite Gulfport Open " | OIFC | 04/08/15
It's late and just getting things wrapped up and ready to go for tomorrow, the first day of the tournament. There will be 22 anglers competing this week. All 22 have chosed to fish LA waters so we will be looking for 3 fish with 2 under 27" and one up to 30".
I scouted day in pretty good conditions. I did not find any great answers but maybe found a "C" spot. I have about a 50 mile run tomorrow over to the Delacroix area of LA. It's not a simple path but hopefully the weather will be decent enough to make the run doable.
I'm not on great fish but you never know for sure until they hit the scales. It is supposed to be cloudy tomorrow so that is not ideal. I am sight fishing almost 100% of the time so clouds are a real problem.
Time to get a couple hours sleep then up at 430am to get this show on the road. Not totally sure but possibly the weigh in will be broadcast live on www.theredfishseries.com tomorrow around 5pm Eastern time.
Capt. Barrett McMullan
"2015 Redfish Season Begins" | OIFC | 04/07/15
My 2015 HT Elite Redfish Series is kicking off this week in Gulfport, MS. Before I go into detail on this event I should give a recap of the last several months.
A lot has changed since I left off in October after the IFA Championship tournament in Houma, LA. First and foremost, I spent the winter months designing and building a brand new ride for this tournament season. Having observed the competition last season and understanding the challenges I faced during each tournament I realized I would be best served for these tournaments in a Majek tower boat. The Majek is a very shallow draft, tunnel hull/flat bottom boat that has a tower built in the middle where I drive from. It is unlike anything most around our area have ever seen. In the short time I've had the boat I can honestly say my expectations have been exceeded. It is a game changer.
Two weeks ago I fished the HT Elite 2014 Championship tournament in Chalmette, LA in this boat. I rolled into town having hardly splashed the boat but I was able to scout a few days with it and then fish the tournament. I didn't provide a report for that event because I was just too busy fishing all day and then working out all the new boat kinks all night. As is the case with most new boats, I had a lot of adjustments to make. In fact some of those adjustments actually cost me the tournament. It's a long, eventful and dramatic story that I will share at some point but for now the focus is on the new season.
This series, titled HT Elite, puts 40 anglers against each other for a season long tour in a battle to see who can catch the best tournament redfish. There are 3 main events with one in Mississippi, one in Louisiana and one in Texas. There are also 3 open events that are open to the Elite 40 and other HT members. These events are used to help anglers qualify for the championship tournament and it's also a decent pay day. This is not team tournament fishing. There is one angler per boat and we fish for the state creel limit in each event.
This first event of the season is an Open and it's in Gulfport, MS. The MS creel limit is 3 redfish up to 30". This presents an interesting dilemma. The Louisiana limit is 5 fish with 4 up to 27" and one over 27". Gulfport is about 10 miles on the MS side of the LA/MS state line. Anglers are forced to choose whether they are fishing LA or MS waters. The disadvantage of fishing LA waters is that you can only keep one fish over 27". So you would be aiming for two 26 7/8" redfish and one 29 7/8" redfish. If you fish MS waters you can have 3 29 7/8" redfish and likely a heavier bag of fish. The issue though is LA redfishing in general is MUCH better than MS. I believe most anglers will choose to fish LA waters. I will be one of them.
I arrived to Chalmette, LA yesterday where I'm basing my practice days from. I was here just 2 weeks ago so I opted not to spend too much time scouting. I was able to scout all day today and I will have a half day tomorrow. Tomorrow evening is the Capt's meeting in Gulfport at the Island View Casino which is also hosting the Gulf Coast boat show during our event. It will be a lot of activity and a big show. Tournament days are Thursday, Friday with the top five qualifying for Saturday. Having spent today on the water, I was able to see the conditions have changed dramatcially from a couple weeks back. The water is much higher which makes seeing the fish difficult as they will get into the grass. Not the grass like we are used to at home but grass actually under water. They burrow in the grass becoming invisible and then ambush prey. I did find a bunch of fish which was once a big challenge last year but now is the norm in this new boat. Getting them to bite will be a different story I'm sure. I have another area I will be chekcing tomorrow and will then make a decision on my tournament game plan.
The HT Elite Series has taken off this year. It has gotten very strong support from sponsors and this year each event will be filmed by an outside production company and broadcast Saturday mornings on Destination America TV. Check out www.theredfishseries.com to see what this deal is all about.
Capt. Barrett McMullan
"Good Friday! " | OIFC | 04/07/15
Jerry Potter was able to catch a few on Good Friday even though conditions were not ideal- thanks for the report!
Be sure to send us your fish photos and reports to firstname.lastname@example.org