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NC Diving Offshore Report

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Drying up inland...
Aug 28, 2002
(I posted several pictures in the photos section...I will post more when I am at a computer where I can resize the images)

I had the opportunity to dive with Russ Karnap this
past week on his boat out of Morehead City, NC. We ran offshore upwards of 60 miles looking for weedlinesto hunt Mahi, Wahoo, etc...but the west wind had blown them further offshore. We decided to run in to a wreck 40 miles off Beaufort Inlet anf try our luck. It took us a bit to locate the wreck, but the sonar soon lit up like a christmas tree!

As soon as I hopped in I
was surrounded by barracuda, and not long after
schools of blue runners began showing up. I dove
down into the school and noticed a cobia lurking but
he bolted as soon as I saw him. These were the
smartest Cobia I have ever seen...relatively speaking.
A couple more dives
and I found the wreck which was just visible from
the surface(top of the wreck ~80', sand at ~115-120').
I put one Aj in the boat as Russ was
anchoring up and went back out(the beauty of not
owning the boat is that you are always the first in
the water...thanks Russ). A few more dives and
I came across a pompano that gave me a long shot and i
watched the shaft fall short of the fish..damn single
wrap. My first chance at a pompano and i got trigger
happy, I'm not used to the great
vis and I thought the fish was smaller and closer:hmm .
Next dive I dropped to the deck of the wreck and
there were 3 of them. I was a bit more patient
waited...waited and bam. Nice headshot and he was
off! My 11 ltr RA float passed me at around 10-15'. Man
these fish are strong. I got two breaths and realized
that I could lose the gun if he hit the wreck(I will
be rigging a breakaway soon)...considering I haven't
paid ML for the gun yet, I decided to muscle the fish
off the bottom and risk losing thes shaft before the
gun...I already owe him one shaft anyway. I got the
float to the surface and began pulling him up. At
about 75' I got a glimpse of him and a 7'+ shadow
coming up. At 30' two of his buddies had joined in
and there were 3 sharks charging the fish that was
still a little green. They were not getting my first
pompano!:naughty I dove to the fish and swam it to the
surface where it really began thrashing and the larger
shark got really excited and begin coming within 3-5'
of me. I pushed him a couple of times with the muzzle
and he would back off, but not more than 20'. I was
now 100yds from the boat and 150 from Russ. That was
the longest swim of my life as he followed me all the
way to the boat. Russ was waiting at the boat with an
Aj and quickly helped me get the fish out of the
water. The Cobia was a bit easier and I got
him to the boat without incident(thanks for the
back-up shot Russ). The grouper were
the next target but they were having none of it. If I
went to 75' they were 85' and off to the side, if I
was 85' then they were 95' and 25' from me...and that
was pushing my limits being late in the day. The
snapper would have been easier, but I thought they
were gray snapper. I had one good shot at them but
they were 5' above a 10-12' sand tiger and if the shot
missed or went throught the snapper I would be
attached to a very unhappy shark. I decide against
it. ML filled me in and let me know that they were
red Snappers. Being the brainchild that I am I forgot
that red was the first wavelength that is absorbed by
water. I should have spent more time on them but it
was getting late in the day and the bottom times were
beginning to suffer. Plus, to get a good shot on this
group you would have to lay on the deck of the wreck
in between three mammoth(8-12')sand tigers. We saw
tons of Cobia and pompano. I was expecting to see a
nice King but none were to be found. Yesterday a
buddy of mine got into some Mahi inside of 25 miles,
should be fun when the seas lay down.

-Jammin' Jay....give me a ring(910-352-7693), we need to get out there SOOOOOON! My roomate just bought a 31' Fountain Center Console so we have an FPS Rocket. (Oh and don't forget that the Fat Cat charter fleet has been expanded to include a seaworthy boat...:eek: ) If I don't talk to you this week I'll see you at the tournament this weekend. We have a new grouper hole that has really been producing also.


Wow that sounds really exciting lots of fish. I still havent shot a Cobia yet I cant find them, actually ive only seen one ever underwater and I thought it was a shark and when I realised it wasnt it was too late.

Were the Cobia hanging around under rays, or were they freeswimming, how much above the wreck do they hang around ??

Most of them were around the wreck early, but fairly spooky. After I shot mine though, it was like they knew that i had reached my limit and then they were everywhere...below the wreck, on the deck, mid-water, and a few swam to the surface to check me out. It was like a cobia petting zoo. I should have waited because there were some pretty large ones later in the day. In fact they just caught a 113lb one the other day not far from that wreck. It's a new state record. I'll post the pic in the photos section.

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113lb thats a tank, what gun were you using.

OH NO...the 113lb-er was not mine. Some guy caught that on rod and reel. I shot my cobia with a OMER Master 116 and a 6.75mm Riffe Euro Shaft.

Phew I was having a hard attack thinking what that would have done to your gear. Thats quite a small gun for those fish eh thought you would be using a 120+ in clear vis like that.

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