Captain Jeffery A. Dunbar Co-Captain Nancy
Professional King Mackerel Angling
August 1st, 2016
leading up to competition in a King Mackerel Tournament ultimately
turns into a
scramble. Even though the schedule is released in advance,
despite the fact that teams each have a routine they follow and
taking into consideration that there is plenty of time to prepare,
teams (including Team FishDancer) always seem to be in a scramble
for time and information just before any KMT begins. Our week of preparation for the 34th
annual Nassau County Sportfish Association (NSFA) Fishing Rodeo,
started out last Saturday, at the end of the Greater Jax KMT.
On the way back home from St. Augustine where we checked out, we noticed a vibration coming from our
center motor. After safely arriving at OBYC and raising the
motor, we found the source of the vibration. YIKES!!! We
are still not sure how this happened, we didn't hit anything we are
aware of, there is no damage to the skeg or hull, but in the end one
can never be sure. Regardless of the cause of this, the
scramble began with our need to source a new prop for our center
motor. Thanks to Mercury and Ken at Prop Gods - we were able
to get not only a replacement but a spare RH in case we have this
received the prop and changed out the bad one, we had AIYB fuel up the Dancer and brought her to
our true home port marina; Oyster Bay Yacht Club Marina - AKA
OBYC. OBYC is an underutilized 76 slip marina and is possibly the best
located marina for deep water access in North East Florida.
Only 2 miles due west of downtown Fernandina Beach, this marina is
on Lanceford Creek, a deepwater offshoot creek of the ICW. We
are only 6 miles from the ocean, with zero no wake zones in between
the marina and the inlet, so we are less than 10 minutes from the
ocean. Unfortunately for Team FishDancer the developer still controls the
marina and will not allow us to install a boat lift to keep the Dancer
out of the water. Something about it interfering with the view..aye yi yi, so we dry store the FishDancer at the Amelia Island Yacht
Basin and weekend her at OBYC whenever possible. It is only
about 5 miles between the two marinas.
The 34th annual
NSFA KMT was set up as a no check out event and since we were
fishing from OBYC - Nan and I figured it would be easy, wake up
around 5:30am get to the boat at 6:00am and head out into the
daybreak to our fishing spot. Wait....what about the baitman?
Uh Oh!! Lee the baitman was scheduled to be at the Dee Dee
Bartels boat ramp between 4:15 - 4:45am and then was moving south to
deliver baits to those checking out of Mayport. So even though we were
sleeping in our own bed and fishing from our home port marina in a no check out
event - in order to get bait, we had to get to the boat by 4:15am.
Only in KMT fishing is this possible. In what alternate universe would an
apparently rational person, get up at O Dark 30, to meet a guy in a
truck in the parking lot of a boat ramp, to give him hundreds of
dollars to put live fish into his buckets? Ahh, the joys of
KMT fishing - and
so it goes.
We were up at
3:30am had a quick breakfast and coffee and landed at the boat at 4:10am.
Now, one thing I am not a great fan of, even in our home waters which
I know like the back of my hand, is running in the dark. We followed
my course lines running through Lanceford Creek and into the ICW and
came up the boat ramp where minor chaos was underway. Boats
were putting in and boats were dropping off crew to get bait and
boats were trying to pick up crew with bait....all at 4:30am.
Nan and I maneuvered our way through the boats, negotiated the drop
off, paid our money, executed the pick up and secured our baits. Now it was 4:45am and the inlet was DARK
(see pic below)...yes that's the moon in the picture. I have been
running boats for more than 25 years and still have not gotten the
run in the dark bug, nor have I learned how
to safely run in the dark. Those two facts combined to see
Team FishDancer motor slowly out the inlet looking
for any bit of daylight that would let me see and read the waves
before we blasted off...
As they day
dawned, we began to execute our fishing plan for the day. We
wanted to get into 90-120 feet of water in an area we know well and
fish hard. We stopped short of our destination to check a spot
we know in 90 feet. First line out we got a strike and
we figured we had found the honey hole....after a brief battle up
rolled a Cuda. We trolled for another 15 minutes and every
bait we deployed was eaten ... unfortunately not by kingfish, but by
barracuda. We pulled lines in and headed another 30 miles east to
one of our favorite all time NE Florida fishing spots in 120 feet.
There were some 10 boats fishing this area, a few miles off of our
'secret' numbers. We worked the area hard with only a few Cuda
bites to show for it. We worked back to the fleet and found
this area to be the same as the one we just fished so we pulled up
lines around 11:30am and headed in some 13 miles to another spot in
100'. According to radio traffic a few decent fish were boated
at this third stop, so we settled in and prepared to grind out the rest of the
day in this fishing hole. We caught 2 kingfish, one about 12-13 pounds we released
at the boat and one smaller than that. Also we fought and
released several more barracuda. All in all not a great day
but for the most part we executed our plan.....we just were not in
the right place for this event....it seems that the big fish weighed
in came from well south of where we fished.
I still am not
used to the value of the speed factor we now have at our disposal.
We fished until almost 4pm and ran the 50 miles to the check in
arriving with 15 minutes to spare. WOW, this is something it will
take some time to get used to. It still feels to me like we
now have a 'bonus hour' of fishing time in the afternoon before we
have to pull up and head to the scales. The FishGods have not
rewarded us for our efforts in fishing to the last but its only a
matter of time until it will pay off.
Given how the
SKA's Division IV and V are scheduled so close together, we have decided
to focus our efforts on SKA Division V for qualification. This
changes our schedule a bit as we will skip the SKA Divison IV Captain Hap event next week
and then focus upon the Golden Isles KMT, a two day fishing event
held out of St. Simons, GA. We are currently in
15th place in SKA division V and are well positioned to secure an
invite to the SKA's Big Dance in November. We might already have
enough points but for sure, one more fish will sew it up for us. We will have two days to find that fish.
FishDancer Angling Team
2016 King Mackerel Tournament Schedule
Divisions IV and V
Two Way Division IV
Ancient City Division V
||St. Augustine, Fl
Greater JAX Division V
Fernandina Beach Division V
||Fernandina Beach, FL
Golden Isles Division V
||St Simons, GA
Bash For Cash
| Fort Pierce, FL
Hotel & Suites
||Fort Pierce, FL
||11.11 - 12
Nancy and I decided to fish SKA Divisions IV and V, we were pleased
would be able to fish most of the events from home. The idea
of sleeping in our own bed and leaving from our own marina had a
nice sound to it after so many years fishing the SKA PRO division in
far away ports and from fish camps or hotels. Fishing the divisions
is much different than fishing the PRO tour as the PRO tour had a
single unifying experience for all teams, qualification. This
made for a commonality of experience to get there and a strong sense
of community across the majority of teams competing. The
divisional events are still fun, but come with an interesting variety of anglers,
of all skill levels and multiple event rules/regulations. As
such you always have to be ready for just about anything, from
checkout to final standings virtually anything is possible.
For example, yesterday morning Nan was listed in the Lady Angler section as
the 5th place Lady, and had this become 'official' 'THE' FishDancer
would have been 'in the money'. But while editing this article
the 'unofficial' standings have been revised dropping her from the
top 5 by .2 pounds. And so it goes.
events do have a history, especially events like the Greater
Jacksonville King Mackerel Tournament, once the largest KMT in the
world. We like the
'Old School' idea of having a burgee that you can fly during
the event. Way back in the day, all of the SKA's Division V
events had burgees and by the end of the season many teams would
have multiple burgees flying to show they supported the division.
things in King Mackerel Tournament fishing, our plans for fishing
Division IV and V have not worked out exactly as designed. Pre-fishing last week for the Greater JAX KMT we discovered that
there were few fish in our local waters -- water temps in the
90 degree range had the fish somewhere else, so we decided to trek
back to St. Augustine where we fished the Ancient City KMT two weeks ago and head south
in search of a decent fish. So much for sleeping in our own bed
and leaving from our home port. This time we had some logistical
issues to resolve even before we wet a line - the Suburban is in the
shop so we could not haul the Dancer and needed to run her down the
ICW. This meant that Nan would drive the car and I would run
the boat - creating some complicated scenarios and possibly long
runs for tournament
We started day
one at 4:30am when the alarm sounded. After a quick coffee and
breakfast we headed out to find the baitman. Two weeks ago
when we fished the Ancient City KMT, we decided to meet the baitman
with our truck and buckets rather than maneuver the boat into the
small channel to the boat ramp with all of the other boats in the
dark - after all it was less than 1/4 mile by truck from the ramp to
Camachee Cove Marina and the baits we picked up by truck fared well. Without our truck,
remember our Suburban was in the shop, this simple task was now
complicated as we had to find a way to get the bait into my BMW
Coupe? Whiskey Tango Foxtrot! I don't know for sure but
would guess that this was the first time in SKA history that baits
were delivered in a 435i. Couple that with the fact that the baitman
lost all of his goggle eyes in transit and we were off to an
interesting start of this event. Once we got the baits arranged and
the boat ready we headed to the checkout point.
We checked out
and headed some 50+ miles E/SE to our chosen fishing ground and were
among the first teams on the spot. We fished hard most of the
day without a weighable kingfish while the 14 other teams around us
seemed to be hooked up all day long. As I was telling our
fishing buddies on Sweet Caroline at the end of the event - fishing
the SKA is like joining the circus, some days you are the Ringmaster
and others the Clown. Day one we were the clown. We were
in a good spot, had good baits including some large fresh runners we
jigged up on the troll and fished hard all day without a weighable
kingfish. We felt like Clowns as we seemed to be the only boat
without a fish.
have a first ever event for us with a kingfish. After a small
strike and run 'THE' FishDancer was reeling in what we expected to
be a small kingfish - what is called a snake along the trail.
Right on schedule the fish came to the boat - but when we lifted it
into the boat to de-hook it, we noticed it was DEAD, DOA, MORTE an
EX-KINGFISH as Monty Python might say. Now I have heard of a
few large fish that expire after a long run and protracted fight,
but this was a 6 pound baby kingfish. In all of our years
fishing KMTs this was a real first for team FishDancer and unfortunately a last for the small fish. We
hooked up several times to the nearly extinct Red Snapper and ended
up the two days of fishing with 8-10 Snapper of this size.
We fished as
late as possible and were the last to leave, but at 4:00pm we took
our day one Clown Boat turned North and made the run back to St. Augustine.
The RingMaster boats with fish had already headed 80 miles back to
Sister's Creek in Jax for the weigh in. The ONLY good thing
about being a Clown Boat on day one was we did not have to make the 80 mile run North to the scale, followed by a 30
mile run South back to our hotel/marina. Our fishing buddies
Sweet Caroline, fishing the same area, had a 39+ and ended up in 3rd place
on day one --
Back at the
hotel, 'THE' FishDancer and I discussed changing locations
for day two - maybe 21 bottom or Elton but we were not sure there
were fish in either location. So it took some determination to
head back to a spot where we got Clowned on day one - but we were both
determined not to become another Clown Boat on day 2. Again we heard the
alarm at 4:30am and began our day - I put my Mercury Pro Team hat on
as I thought the circus Ringmaster would put on his Top Hat and
headed to the boat. The baitman had gogs this time and we put
2 dozen gogs and a dozen runners in our baitwells and headed back to
the checkout point. Once checked out we ran hard to the spot
and were the second team to arrive - I have to say it really
is different and fun to be able to run 65 mph to the spot and I am enjoying
the extra speed and power our Mercury Verado 350s give us. I
began by putting a gog down at 65 feet and then filled in the rest
of my 100, 75, 50, 50, 75 spread. Not too long afterward we
got our first strike and we brought a 18 pounder into the boat - no
longer a Clown Boat but still not the RingMasters either. We
released several nearly extinct Red Snapper and then got the bite we
were looking for. A screaming run that dumped almost 2/3 the
contents of our Shimnano Trinadad 30 reel. We chased the fish
and chased the fish, but every time we got close the fish made yet
another run. After about 15-20 minutes of back and forth we
finally got to where I could see the fish and the status of the
hooks - YIKES. It was a good mid 30s fish and it had a single
treble hook imbedded in its tail and was coming up tail first -
UH OH! It is never good to have only one hook embedded in the TAIL
(simple recipe to lose the fish) and even worse to have the fish coming up tail
first (difficult to gaff the fish in this postion). 'Ladies,
Gentlemen and Children of all ages', as much as
we might want to believe that is purely skill that distinguishes
Ringmasters and Clowns, in the end sometimes the only
difference is luck. All I could think of while Nancy was
trying to angle the fish, tail first to the boat was, Frank Sinatra
singing, "Luck be a lady tonight". As 'THE' FishDancer slowly
brought the fish to the boat I could see the tail and the hook and
every time the fish with its head down and tail up beat its tail to
swim away I thought we had a good chance of losing this fish.
Finally Nan got the fish close enough to the boat to be gaffed -
but have you ever tried to gaff a fish that comes up tail first?
Not much to gaff - so I took a shot and gaffed my first king
mackerel through the head -- no blood loss but not my first choice
of target areas. Afraid the gaff would rip out we slowly
walked the fish back to the transom where the gunnel is lower and
lifted the fish into the FishDancer, now at least on this day, we
were officially a RingMaster
boat. Finally a good fish - which I estimated at 36 pounds when we
landed him (34.35 on the official scale) - for the new boat
On the 80 mile
run back to Jax, Nan and I began discussing the craziness of fishing
KMTs and how your fishing performance can affect your attitude. When
you do poorly and don't weigh a good fish you tend to think that you
can no longer catch these fish and you are doing something really
wrong or other teams have learned something that you don't yet know.
This was our day one mentality. When you do well and weigh a
good fish you tend to think it is 100% skill coupled with the genius
of your decisions that brought you to the area and fish. This was
our day two mentality. The reality is something altogether
different - fishing luck plays a big part in this game and
many times decides whether you wear the big top hat or a big red
pound fish earned Nancy 6th place Lady Angler and was about two pounds off
of the top 10 leaderboard. We also think that the SKA points we earned
will end up qualifying us for Mercury's Pre-Game Bash for Cash and the SKA's Big Dance in November
out of Division V - which is our ultimate goal for 2016. After JAX we currently stand in 10th place
in SKA Division V.
Congrats to all who fished and especially all who placed in the
event - it was a really strong leaderboard. Next up for us is Fernandina's Nassau County KMT next
Saturday....wish us luck. Ringmaster or Clown we still always enjoy
Team FishDancer just finished participating in the 2016 Ancient City
Kingfish Challenge, the SKA's kickoff event for division V.
This event would be the first real test that Nan and I would have
for the new boat. Yes we have run the boat about 20 hours,
breaking in the motors and figuring out the differences that a
stepped hull, an additional motor and some extra horsepower might
have on how the boat would run and handle. But we knew until
we pushed ourselves and the new boat in a tournament setting, we
would not know how either of us would fare for sure. So we got settled into Camachee Cove
Marina late Friday in 104 degree heat and were anxious to see how the checkout on day
one would go. Nancy and I have fished hundreds of SKA events since 1997
with several different boats, mostly twin outboard boats, and as
such we have never really had SPEED to consider as a tournament
variable. NOT ANY MORE. With triple Mercury Verado 350s,
speed is now clearly a weapon in our arsenal which we need to
consider to fully utilize all of our equipment and angling skills as
well as leverage our fishing plans each day of
competition. It requires a different mind set.
The Ancient City
deployed a unique check out arrangement, whereby all offshore teams
would check out by radio anytime after 5:30am. Then at 6:15am
the teams would be led out of the inlet by a committee boat at which
point we could hit the throttles at 6:30am. In the past we
never felt in anyway disadvantaged with our twin engine boats vs the
tripe or quad engine teams. Since we could run in the 50mph range we
could get our chosen spot in adequate time and maybe we weren't the
first on the spot or the last to leave BUT we could still compete
with the fast boats. Given this reality, our past check out and
fishing strategy was designed to maximize the clock, that is to say
to provide us the most available fishing time given our speed.
At check out time our strategy would be to
hang back in the back 1/3 of the field and let the fastest boats
check out first. Since we are NOW one of these fast triple engine
teams, we decided to be near the front of the queue as the committee
boat led us to the launch area. We expected to be able to keep
up with the boats checking our first and wanted to settle in for a
long run to our chosen fishing grounds.
At 6:30am we took off and put
the throttles down on the new FishDancer. The ocean was calm
and the Contender 35st settled back on the pad and off we went.
The triple Mercury Verado 350s roared to life and pushed the
FishDancer past 40mph, 50mph, 60mph and we settled in an amazing
65mph with a full load of fuel, ice and equipment. A few
minutes after turning South
from the inlet, we looked around and found ourselves looking at open
flat ocean.....not the usual boat wakes and quickly disappearing transoms
of the 'fast boats'. We ran about 90 miles south and we the
first on the spot - it was the first time ever we had won an SKA
boat race in our career. So we know now that we have one of the quickest boats
on tour and it is amazing what speed can do when properly
applied. Frankly it was the first time in our SKA career that
we had the ability to outrun the pack....WOW. Quite a thrill.
We fished far
South on day one with only baby kingfish to show for it and fished
south day two but about only half the distance of the first day.
We ran and fished hard
both days and executed our plan. We learned that due to
our speed we could fish earlier than most and fish later than usual,
two new variables for us to consider. We fished where the
largest fish of the SKA portion of this event was caught, so we were
in a decent place to fish, we just didn't have any fishing luck.
We caught fish both days but could not find one larger than 14
pounds for the scales. So we brought back a single fish weighed in
for SKA division V qualification points, where we currently stand
16th in the division.
decided to skip the Sapelo Open KMT and focus upon the Greater Jacksonville KMT
on Thursday and Friday next week.
Our goal for this season is to work hard, run hard and fish hard to
qualify for the 'Big Dance' the old fashioned way. Thanks to our
sponsors at Contender Boats, Mercury Marine, LoadMaster Trailers and
Raymarine electronics - we appreciate your support!!!
Wish us luck.
feature of FishDancer.net - FishDancer Classics.
Recently I was
reviewing the archives of the FishDancer.net website - some of them
going back more than 15 years and got a kick out of reading them
again. I will now, from time to time, re-post some of these
FishDancer Classics. The initial Classic
article posted below is interesting in its original context; it was composed way back in 2001
and was discussing our first SKA experience 5 years before it was
written. Then, Nan and I were both under 40 years old, fished out of
the original FishDancer,a 23' single motor Century and had yet to
qualify for a SKA National Championship. My, my, my how time
time has passed and circumstances changed since then. This article is one of my
favorites because it clearly defines how we got the KingFishing bug, why we have tournament fished
for so long and essentially captures the best concepts of why this
sport is so much fun....enjoy...
a recent trip offshore – as we were navigating to our fishing hole –
we began wondering ‘How in the world did we ever get involved in
SKA tournament angling?’
“THE” FishDancer and I have always enjoyed angling – and feel
lucky to have had great opportunities to fish all over the world.
Why then were we in a 23’ foot center console boat heading some
12 miles E of the St. Mary’s inlet in 3-5’ seas to catch a King
As we sloshed
through the seas, and I tried to think back to when the tournament bug
bit us - my mind wandered back to the time BEFORE there ever was a
FishDancer – let alone a FishDancer angling team
yourself and learning new skills is how we grow as human beings as well
About 13 years
ago we began fishing NE Florida with an excellent Charter Captain who
has in time become a good friend of ours (and our fishing mentor) - Terry LaCoss.
Terry is the director of fishing activities at the Amelia Island
Plantation, the President of the Amelia Island Charter Boat Association,
a feature writer for the Fernandina Beach News Leader, an accomplished
angler as well as the winner of many SKA sanctioned events.
Terry would always teach us something new when we fished with
him, which we did quite often.
Terry refers to Nancy - aka ‘THE' FishDancer - as “…my favorite
lady angler…” and it is evident that he is proud to see what we have
been able to accomplish under his tutelage.
About 8 years ago when visiting Fernandina Beach we tried to set
up a charter with Terry, but unfortunately he was busy, as he was
planning to fish in the Fernandina Beach King Mackerel Classic.
After a few minutes of conversation with Terry, he invited Nancy
and me to compete with him in this SKA event.
Needless to say we accepted and could barely contain our
The next morning we rose in the pre dawn darkness, around 4:30am and met
Terry and his son TD at the dock.
then had a 27’ Hydra Sport Center Console – Amelia Angler - with
twin 250 Mercury’s on the stern.
We went through the early morning checklist with him and TD;
there were so many preparations and details to attend to.
Lines, rigs, chum, fuel, bait, rods, reels, and navigation - it
seemed a daunting task to us then to assure ALL of these details were
After assuring nothing was left to
chance we motored out slowly through the Fernandina Beach no wake zone
to the check out holding area.
This area was filled with glistening angling machines, more than
100 of them, all tensed and prepared for the day ahead. This is a sight that hooks many an angler into the tournament
circuit. The sight of these sleek machines, all tricked out and ready to
fight hand-to-hand combat with a smoker King mackerel has been known to
create a fishing fever in the most ardent anglers.
We ran some 45 miles N/NE of the St. Mary’s inlet - at over 50 MPH -
over the flat early morning ocean.
We stopped inshore of our desired angling location to cast net
some live pogies for our day of fishing.
The spectacle of schooling pogies and the maneuvering of the boat
and casting of the net to successfully catch these little King Mackerel
snacks has never ceased to amaze me. Even today this task remains one of
my favorites but on this day – with the adrenaline flowing from our
first tournament experience – Nancy and I were amazed at the skill of
A few quick
throws of the net and we loaded up with what we termed back then
‘studly’ pogies. Once the 50-gallon live well was full, and we had
some extra for chumming, we turned east and sped to our designated
angling spot - Cabretta.
Cabretta – the name itself implied mystery, danger and opportunity to
Nancy and I.
We worked in
unison with TD and Terry to ready the baits, gear and put out the lines.
There were other boats already fishing this area and the radio
chatter seemed to indicate a King bite of significant proportions was
on. We watched as boats on either side of us hooked up and the excited
anglers headed to the bow to dance the Kingfish mambo with Mother
Nature. The excitement level of the Amelia Angler fishing team was
increasing by the minute.
provided a last minute reminder of the tasks we ALL had to complete to
effectively catch one of these wily predators.
We all watched the baits and they became increasingly nervous.
Nancy was the designated angler for this day and we all anticipated the
strike we knew was coming.
rod tip was twitching.
pogy was jumping for his very life when all of a sudden a huge hole in
the ocean opened, white water appeared all around the spot where our
pogy was recently swimming, the bait disappeared and this unique
high-pitched screaming sound began. It was a second or two before, the then neophytes; Nancy and
I, realized the sound was coming from the Penn reels. Terry and TD were already at work, bringing in the lines and
yelling for me to turn the boat into the fish’s sizzling first run.
Nancy grabbed the rod and off we went in pursuit of our first
Tournament King Mackerel.
It seemed as if we would never gain on the fish.
This sleek 50 MPH boat was being outrun by a King mackerel!!! WOW! After a fight of about 15-20 minutes with gentle
coaching from Terry and TD, Nancy brought beside the boat a solid
tournament King Mackerel.
neatly gaffed the fish and with in no time had the fish on ice in the
insulated fish bag he had prepared in advance.
Nancy and I had no idea we even HAD a fish bag let alone one
stocked with ice and ready to accept a fish.
We caught several more fish that day but none I will remember as
well as Nancy’s first SKA weigh in fish.
Accounting for the long run time required of us to travel 45
miles back to the weigh in site and trying to miss the building
afternoon thunderstorms, Terry took control of the Amelia Angler and
rocketed us back to Fernandina Beach.
We made the weigh in cut off time with not more than a few
minutes to spare and Nancy proudly took her fish and carried him to the
The crowd was
pleased to see this fish, cheering as Nancy walked up the Fernandina
Beach Municipal marina’s dock.
look on Nancy’s face was priceless when they announced her fish
weighed 25.78 pounds – not enough for a check – but large enough to
add a few points to Terry’s aggregate total in the SKA divisional
did Nancy and I know but that fateful day at Cabretta – the spot of
mystery, danger and opportunity, while dancing the Kingfish mambo with
Mother Nature – the Kingfish tournament bug bit us.
Since then many days have passed – but few without some work
done towards our goal of qualifying for the SKA national championships.
There have been many early mornings and late evenings during the season
as well as much fun, excitement and joy from our accomplishments.
FishDancer was continuing into a head sea while 'THE' FishDancer
held on tight.
remembered why we were in a 23’ foot center console boat heading some
12 miles E of the St. Mary’s inlet in 3-5’ seas to catch a King
mackerel…there is nothing else like it in God’s blue ocean."
Wow...quite a ride and a fish we
still remember well many years later. Next up for Team FishDancer is the
Ancient City KMT, a Division V SKA event, out of Saint Augustine,
Florida in two weeks....
6.20.16 It has been a strange kind of spring. Usually,
by now we have fished in Key West and at least one other West Florida pro event.
With the PRO division being virtually eliminated by the actions of SKA
management, we are faced with a new reality for our 2016 tournament season.
In place of the two or three PRO events we would have fished - 'THE' FishDancer and I have been enjoying ourselves in a different way. We
have been to Paris, France - Venice, Italy - New York, NY and have visited the
Dominican Republic several times. So IF anyone at the SKA wonders IF PRO
teams will find other, perhaps better uses of their disposable income, the
answer is YES, yes indeed!
So here we are in mid-June, with a brand new Contender 35st,
Triple Verado 350s and a brand new LoadMaster trailer. The boat delivered
in early April has 16 hous on it. But now we change direction and ready
ourselves and our equipment for SKA divisional competition. It is a kind of
'back to the future' season for us where we will fish our local KMTS - a process
with which we started our KMT career more than 20 seasons ago. Our 'home'
division is really unclear - as we reiside in Fernandina Beach - Div V seems to
be a logical home division for us. But we are partial - and equally
geographically close - to Division IV. This is the division where we
cashed our first tournament check. So we will try and fish both divisions
IV and V. Although the scheduling of these divisions is really difficult
for us - another stroke of GENIUS by the powers that be. To fish both
Division IV and V we will be competing June 17th, July 7th, 15th, 18th and 29th
and August 5th and 19th. Not alot of preparation or maintenance time
available in July and early August with us fishing 5 of 6 weekends in a row?
Aye yi yi. But we are up for it regardless. I have listed below our
schedule and as it develops and our performances become known, I will do a
better job of updating this website. So stay with us in 2016 and see where
our fishing adventures take us - we hope to see you somewhere along the trail...
Site Navigation - click on the fish below to explore
King Fish College
This high energy husband and wife team joined the SKA Professional Kingfish Tour
after qualifying in SKA Division IV . They won the Kingfish Division of the
Offshore Blitz, won 1st place Lady Angler in the Two Way KMT, 2nd place Lady
Angler and 9th overall at the Halfmoon KMT. Team FishDancer won the final leg of
the SKA Pro Tour in Port Fourchon Louisiana by landing a 61.1 pound fish, the
2nd largest of the season and the largest weighed by a Lady Angler. Team
FishDancer has had 17 top ten day one performances on the SKA Pro Tour and
eleven top ten finishes; including 2 top Lady Angler wins; Golden Isles leg of
the SKA Pro tour and the Jacksonville leg of the SKA Pro Tour. Thee team has
finished in 18th place overall in the Junior Angler Jacksonville King Mackerel
Tournament and in 8th place at the SKA PRO tour stop in Brunswick, Georgia,
finished 4th overall at the Brunswick, Georgia SKA Pro Tour and earned 5th place
in the ASWSC 20th Anniversary Sailfish Tournament, in Palm Beach, Florida. Nancy
and Jeff, one of the top performing husband and wife competitive angling teams
in the nation, having been nationally ranked in the top 10 KingFish Pro teams
with Nancy having been ranked as high as 3rd in the Lady Angler Category. The
team has completed the SKA Professional kingfish grand slam weighing in fish in
the 10, 20, 30, 40, 50 and 60 pound classes, held the SKA big fish (61.1) for
Port Fourchon, LA. The team has competed in every SKA division and has fished in
the class of 23, Open, Pro, Lady Angler and recently Senior Angler categories.
Nancy is considered one of the top Lady KingFish Anglers in the nation and Jeff
has received the prestigious SKA Director's award for his 'unselfish
contributions to our sport"'
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integrity & probity while enjoying the camaraderie, adventure and
excitement of the SKA Professional Kingfish Tour.
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