Wishing I was fishing. Escape winter for Sailfish adventure in Warmer Destinations By Justin Suarez

Mr. Sailfish coming in for a closer look.

With Christmas and the holidays around the corner and the temperatures in the Northeast dropping rapidly as the polar vortex approaches it’s time to think of southern destinations!

From Jupiter,Florida all the way down to the Florida Keys the Sailfish bite will start getting off to a hot start. There are many different approaches and tactics for sailfish from kite fishing and live baiting but one of my favorites is running and gunning.


Schooling Ballyhoo, awesome rig bait for Sailfish.


The sailfish are corralling the ballyhoo into tight, frightened schools and exploding into those bait balls at over 60mphs! The trick is to cruise and keep eyes peeled in every direction for what looks like “raining bait.” This is where you want to be! The sailfish have the bait balls in a frenzy and the bait between their fear and the sailfish attacking them with their sweeping bills, are literally flying out of the water at such speed and frequency that it looks as if the sky is raining down bait! Run and gun to that spot and the choice is yours send out a live ballyhoo or goggle eye and get ready for an awesome hookup with one of the most acrobatic and beautiful fish in our oceans!!


Sailfish on his way after a perfect release.

When live baiting these fish I love using the Accurate SR 20, it allows me the versatility of easy flipping of the bait with more accuracy and let’s be honest it’s just a pure bad ass way of catching billfish! If you are looking for a light tackle challenge use a SR-12 spoiled with ten pound braid and get ready for a fight of a lifetime. Most people like conventionals for Sailfish but there is something about catching them on the most powerful spinning reels in the world that make my fishing senses tingle!

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