Trip to the Salt Dome - August 23, 2009© Photos by Mark Miller © Hi-Res Source
I have been wanting to upgrade my Canon G2 Camera to something that could produce some marketable prints, so this was a Scout Trip out to some Shelf Rigs in the area of the Salt Dome to determine the feasiblity of this project. The crew consisted of my 2 boys Paul (14) and Luke (12) along with their friend Cory Lambert (14). We stopped at the large Rig just a mile or so before the Salt Dome and Jigged up a large Big-Eye which was our interesting catch of the Trip. We then went on to the Salt Dome, getting onsite near midnight. Fish were marking well and we chummed our hearts out hoping for some Tuna, but all we got were Sharks and Horse Eye Jacks. At 1AM, it was like someone turned a switch and the winds came howling out of the North and they did not stop for the rest of the trip. At daylight, we got started trolling our chum slick hoping for Tuna and Wahoo. We hooked one Hoo, but lost him at boatside. After that all we could get were King Mackeral, but there was plenty. One of them crashed a Skirted Ballyhoo Bait and soared some 20+ feet into the air with our Skirt hanging from his lip. It was an awesome sight, but he managed to cut the leader in his feat. Then we went a little further south to VK817 in about 1100 feet of water. No fish action and the Rig Workers were SandBlasting which prevented us from Diving. We then hit about 3 nearby Rigs going to the Northeast getting in some great dives with good vis and lots of Tropicals. Game fish were slim and seemed to elude us as our first speared AJ broke free and the second broke the steel cable and swam off with the Shaft rendering us weaponless for the rest of the Trip. As we headed North, we hit Rig MP242A in about 200 feet of water and it was loaded with AJs and Beeliners. Then we headed home, but broke down as we got about 9 miles from Horn Island. The Honda slowed down by itself and froze up. After cooling off it cranks, but sounds bad and there is no water pressure. No alarms or warnings prior to this happening. Anyway, I have had bad luck with Honda Engines as my previous one also gave me grief. Total trip encompassed 149 miles (25 miles short of the dock), 94.4 gallons of fuel ($246), and 30 hours (6 hours tow plus wait). My hat is off to John Knight for coming out to tow us in. THANK YOU JOHN! I owe you twice now.