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Author Topic:   Perdido Key
Landlocked posted 07-17-2001 10:06 PM ET (US)   Profile for Landlocked   Send Email to Landlocked  
Just booked a condo for 7 nights on the river side of perdido key - Fl. during early Sept. Has a dock/slip so I convinced the captain to let me take the Montauk along. Anyone fished this area or know enough about it to give me some advice re: things to see places to fish.

Also, have GPS, basic safety eqm fire ext., throw rings, paddles, life jackets and vhf radio. Anything special I need to comply with coast guard regs? All my boatings fresh-water. Here if you have a life-jacket you're ahead of the game.

Appreciate any input.


Bigshot posted 07-18-2001 09:23 AM ET (US)     Profile for Bigshot  Send Email to Bigshot     
Where is that near?
Mike posted 07-18-2001 10:14 AM ET (US)     Profile for Mike  Send Email to Mike     
On Gulf coast at Alabama-Florida border. Bridge at Perdido Pass separates the two states.
Bigshot posted 07-18-2001 10:20 AM ET (US)     Profile for Bigshot  Send Email to Bigshot     
Ah! Do you ever go to Shell Island? we are thinking of a trip to cedar Key in Aug or Sept.
hauptjm posted 07-18-2001 10:24 AM ET (US)     Profile for hauptjm    
You are going to love it! If you like back-bay exploring, 5-minute access to the Gulf of Mexico, and the finest beaches in the World, then you'll love this place. I have already spent a week there this summer, and do it every year.

Perdido Key is 10-15 minutes west of Pensacola, FL and just to the east of Orange Beach, AL. This is part of the western most panhandle of FL. For those that may scoff at the "World's Finest Beach" comment: Conde Nast Magazine removed them from the annual ranking because it won hands down every year. Nowhere in the world can you find sand that is absolutely sugar white and fine. In fact, in the past, there were instances of grifters bagging the sand and selling it on the wharfs in New Orleans as refined sugar.

Beside the beach, the fishing and exploring are wonderful. On the bay side, there are a thousand little sandy coves with beautiful topography, great fishing and privacy. You'll also discover some hidden little "joints" tucked away like Pirate's Cove. Jimmy Buffet grew up in this area, and wrote his famous "Cheeseburger in Paradise" about the Pirate's Cove hamburger. It's a great little dive.

Now if you like to fish offshore and don't want to spend hours getting to deep water, this is the place. I've caught Wahoo, Cobia, Chicken Dolphin, King Mackerel, Spanish Mackerel, Bluefish and Grouper to name a few within 5-7 miles of the beach. Some days you can troll 3-5 miles out and get some great hook-ups. There are wrecks to fish, offshore rigs (psss...don't tell Jeb B.) and shelf lines, weed lines, etc. All around good sport.

I promise I don't work for the tourist commission in FL; I just like the area between Orange Beach, AL and Destin, FL that much. Best of all, it's only 3-4 hours out of New Orleans.

jameso posted 07-18-2001 10:39 AM ET (US)     Profile for jameso  Send Email to jameso     
Don't miss the FloraBama bar! It is like no other place I have been. And the beaches are the best any where in the world. I have spent years in the panhandle area, and it will spoil you! Explore the area near Orange beach called Bear Point, It used to have a neat little marina/bar/resturant, you can get there by water via a canal. I do most of my whaling now on the GA coast,,it can't begin to compare to the Fl panhandle.
Landlocked posted 07-18-2001 10:45 AM ET (US)     Profile for Landlocked  Send Email to Landlocked     
Thanks all (keep the info coming). If you have emailed me at home, or I have cooresponded with you in the past please see the new topic "virus alert" I just posted.

Some $%&^## got me. Don't open email from me until I post the all clear.

I'll limit my use of this site to my "clean" work computer until I get this fixed.


Clark Roberts posted 07-18-2001 11:05 AM ET (US)     Profile for Clark Roberts  Send Email to Clark Roberts     
Dittos: absolutely the most beautiful beaches and water in the world! The Bahamas would love to have beaches like that... they don't!!! I grew up just north of Panama City and thought that all beaches were like the Fla. Panhandle,,,, until I visited others. Wife and I spend a month each year in the fall on the beach near Mexico Beach and Port St. Joe... sand there is not as blindingly white as Destin/Pensacola but much less crowded... and great rivers and bays to run! You will love Perdido Key! Clark... Spruce Creek Navy
JFM posted 07-18-2001 11:15 AM ET (US)     Profile for JFM  Send Email to JFM     
Some of the best beaches in the world also great fishing in the flats,and great fishing in the cuts. Everything from reds to black tip shark.
JimU posted 07-18-2001 03:52 PM ET (US)     Profile for JimU  Send Email to JimU     
Ditto. had a 44 sport fisherman in Perdido Bay for several years during the oil boom days of the 70'S. Don't miss Flora-Bama on Friday nite,Watch the sky divers jump into the patio bar. JimU
gunnelgrabber posted 07-18-2001 08:02 PM ET (US)     Profile for gunnelgrabber  Send Email to gunnelgrabber     
growing up on the ga. coast i thought that's what beaches and seawater 'sposed to look like. imagine the first time i saw pc and destin !!different world!!unbelieveable...lm
Whaler15 posted 07-18-2001 08:14 PM ET (US)     Profile for Whaler15  Send Email to Whaler15     
I just returned from that area on vacation, actually went to Navarre Beach, Fl. It IS beautiful. There are alot of sharks out there right now. 10 1/2' hammerhead caught last weekend off the public fishing pier in Pensacola. 3 attacks in as many weeks.

If you are a classic Whaler nut like me, make sure you check out the Boston whaler dealership in Pensacola (about 15 miles east of Perdido); Killinger's Marine on Airport Road. They claim to be the oldest BW dealer in the nation. Alot of newer whalers from 13' up to 27' and many in between. They also have 2 restored classic whalers (1966 and 1967) and a 25th anniversary 13'.

Landlocked posted 07-18-2001 10:24 PM ET (US)     Profile for Landlocked  Send Email to Landlocked     
You guys are starting to get my wife more excited than me!!!!!! Had no idea what a place we had selected for this, our first vacation in 6 years. A few of you have emailed me and I haven't been able to respond due to the virus prob. I mentioned earlier. Virus is now dead.

I'd like to get in touch with you guys close and see if I can con you out of a guide day. I'll buy the beer, sandwiches and gas.
All the salt water fishing I've ever done is for red-drum and spotted sea trout but I'd like to try something new if its in Montauk range.

I'll be in touch. We'll be staying at the Riviera Dunes (river side) Sept 7 - 14.


flwhaler posted 07-19-2001 12:27 AM ET (US)     Profile for flwhaler  Send Email to flwhaler     
Landlocked and others

Its so cool seeing postive post about my area. Hope you have a great time down here! I think I could meet up with you Sunday or Wednesday. As far as fishing e-mail and Questions I can answer them. It is true Killinger is the oldest whaler dealer in the nation. The have 3 very clean examples of the classics. The 13 is the 25th aniverary Edtion and has never seen the water, never been drilled for a motor, and even the paper protective rap has never been taken of the stern light!
Be sure you coast guard kit is up to date!

Let me know if I can help!
oh..yah yes you must go to the a college student I know the place well..


Landlocked posted 07-19-2001 08:47 PM ET (US)     Profile for Landlocked  Send Email to Landlocked     
Coast Guard Kit??? Ok, I'm an ignorant inlander (hence the name) I assume this means flairs/signal devices, anything else? -I have some but not required to here so they are out of date - kept them figuring they were better than nothing. Will replace are the hand-held ones ok or do I have to have a gun?

As far as fishing... Do I need salt water permits from both Alabama and Florida? What about casting for shrimp (6' cast net) any special permit?

REDFISH posted 07-20-2001 12:35 PM ET (US)     Profile for REDFISH  Send Email to REDFISH     
84 Montauk posted 07-20-2001 03:58 PM ET (US)     Profile for 84 Montauk    
You'll be in my area. Backwaters are best for the Montauk, but if the gulf is calm you can troll along the beach. There are plenty of great restaurants you can get to by boat. Try the Back Porch at Bear Point, Pirates Cove (directly across the intercoastal from Bear Point), Wolf Bay Lodge, and Calypso's. For some of the most beautiful undeveloped Alabama coastline, explore Ingram's Bayou just west of Pirates Cove, or go up Palmetto Creek at night with a spotlight and see if you can count the pairs of eyes glowing out of the water and grass. It's like a cartoon!. Fishing is great if the water is moving. Specks and reds are the most prevalent. Drift live shrimp on pier lights on Ono River at night. Watch no wake zones. If you have kids, come around to Bay La Launch for some calm water for skiing or tubing. I think you'll find plenty of places for boating activity. Have fun!
84 Montauk posted 07-20-2001 03:59 PM ET (US)     Profile for 84 Montauk    
Oh I out for sharks if you're wading in the gulf at sunrise or sunset!!
where2 posted 07-20-2001 04:56 PM ET (US)     Profile for where2  Send Email to where2     
Fishing License is required for Salt or Freshwater fishing in Florida. But, I'll give you the link to get one from your computer...

Be sure to read the segments on who does and does not need a license, whether you need endorsements and such. If you don't want to get it over the net, you can pick one up all over the place once you're in state. Have a great trip...

flwhaler posted 07-21-2001 08:30 AM ET (US)     Profile for flwhaler  Send Email to flwhaler     
Yes you did need both fishing Licenses. if in Alabama/Florida. For example florida aboat launches in Alabama fishes out of orangebeach pass (AL) in Alabama state waters then he jumps to way east to fl st waters and comes in pensacola pass to run the interscoastal water way back to the launch in alabama. He will be carrying fish through fl and al so he better have both. NO to catch shrimp with a bait net you do not have to have specal permit.


Landlocked posted 07-21-2001 03:17 PM ET (US)     Profile for Landlocked  Send Email to Landlocked     
I only asked because here in Tennessee we have reciprical agreements with the surounding states. Dale Hollow lake for example is in both Kentucky and Tennessee if you have one or the other license - the adjacent State will honor it. These agreements are limited in scope to certain areas. Just thought since the border is so "oddly" shaped at that point of Fl/Al there might be a similar agreement.

I just printed out a big map of the area off Topo USA and I'm working on plotting some of the places you guys have suggested. May have questions later.

Also 84 Montauk - you suggested trolling along the beach. Any suggestions as to bait? How deep/ how fast. What do you usually catch?

I usually fish for Red Drum/Spotted Sea Trout with a pyramid weight and two shrimp suspended on a leader above. Use a slip float and let it bounce along the bottom... Will this method work there?


hauptjm posted 07-23-2001 09:31 AM ET (US)     Profile for hauptjm    
Landlocked, I don't think that'll work offshore. Even though you're in sight of the beach, you're offshore. That's what is so great about this location. Based on your boat, and assuming you don't have downriggers, try this: Buy some planer rigs from a local tackle shop. If you can run four baits, set up two for top water trolling, and two for down. I've used this set-up very successfully. At roughly 4-5kts. the planers will bring your bait to about 15-20 ft. down on roughly 75-100 ft. of scope. If you've only got room for two lines, just put one down and one up. I find fresh frozen cigar minnows behind chartreuse skirts down low, and fresh unfrozen squid on top have given me good results. You hook-up all kinds of wicked fighters. Cobia, Wahoo, Ling, Dolphin, etc. If you can find one of the many wrecks, structures, etc. that are offshore, drop down to the bottom with some live bait, like Pinfish (a native perch type of fish) and hang on. You've got huge Bluefish, Grouper, Red Snapper, etc. that'll dislocate your arm.
JFM posted 07-23-2001 10:47 AM ET (US)     Profile for JFM  Send Email to JFM     
Landlocked, you said you have a cast net. You may find the native minnows a very good bait. We use a small weight abour 18 inches from the hook. Hook the minnow through the space above its mouth under its eyes and just float it. Last time my son and I fished this way we caught snook, snapper, spanish,pompano. We also caught reds and black tips with cigar minnows and shrimp on the bottom. Regards Jay
Landlocked posted 07-23-2001 03:18 PM ET (US)     Profile for Landlocked  Send Email to Landlocked     
Thanks! I definately want to try some trolling but don't want to get too far out. I'll go by bass pro tonight and see what they have as far as planer rigs.

Jay, will the float method work ancored in the bay at creek mouths etc?


JFM posted 07-23-2001 03:43 PM ET (US)     Profile for JFM  Send Email to JFM     
Landlocked, We used that method from fishing off the breakers and also anchored. We never went out more than 2 miles into the gulf. The weight is a split shot and we would increase or deccrease the weight depending on the depth of the target fish or the size of the minnow. The secret is not to use to much weight because the minnow will be swimming. Regards, Jay
JFM posted 07-23-2001 04:58 PM ET (US)     Profile for JFM  Send Email to JFM     
Landlocked, we always fished the outside of the passes on the gulf sides and the same with the breakers. The inlands we used our midwest lures and crank bait and just caught trout. Regards Jay
flwhaler posted 07-23-2001 10:07 PM ET (US)     Profile for flwhaler  Send Email to flwhaler     
OkOK..there aren't any snook up here unless the are mounted. Snapper are not going to hit a trolling rig. Grouper or will hit a strech 30 in the Pensacola Bay or Pass if lucky Trolling with 4 baits is a bit much for a 17. Try 3 one in the center and 2 outside. Try a strech 30 for ur diver and a duster or squid type bait on top. Planners are a mess a medium king is going to hit it and run it into your other baits. Plus they are a pain. Yes the shrimp setup you are speaking of with catch fish..not what you looking for. If you want to catch Specks you going to have to fish the grass flats or piers at night. With a popping plug and live shrimp or Yozure plugs

Landlocked posted 07-23-2001 10:35 PM ET (US)     Profile for Landlocked  Send Email to Landlocked     
Thanks to all who have responded... I realize I may have stretched the limits a little with my post as it doesn't relate directly to whalers other than the fact I'll be fishing out of one...

Its amazing how many folks login to this site everyday. Where else could I have gotten so much honest and friendly feedback. You all have really helped me plan my vacation!

Now, If the motor doesn't break down and leave me wash up on the beach (somewhere), Life will be good.


JFM posted 07-24-2001 08:43 AM ET (US)     Profile for JFM  Send Email to JFM     
flwhaler, maybe my son should have mounted his snook ,34", but it sure tasted good. He caught it last April. It was the only one we caught.
John W posted 07-24-2001 09:31 AM ET (US)     Profile for John W  Send Email to John W     
JFM, not to start something here, but a 34" snook in Perdido Key? I find that hard to believe, that's WAY north of their range, which stops around Homosassa on the gulf coast. 50 degree water will kill a snook in a hurry, and there aren't too many winters in the panhandle where water temps don't dip below that. In any case 34" is the max size you can legally keep in Florida and was a breeding female, we always release them that size, although I doubt that fish would make it through the winter anyway. If you caught it in Alabama I'm sure it would be a state record, if one has ever been ccaught there before at all.
Clark Roberts posted 07-24-2001 11:01 AM ET (US)     Profile for Clark Roberts  Send Email to Clark Roberts     
I don't doubt JFM's snook story because I have caught snook in St. Joseph's Bay, way up in panhandle. Seems to be some micro-climates where vegetation and fish thrive "out of normal range". There are even mangroves on Black's Island in St. Joe Bay... there is a big orange grove in Panacea on Ochocknee Bay and oranges and grapefruit in residential yards in Port St. Joe! Let's hear it from others about panhandle snook as it's been 40 years since I caught one over there... and the winters were warmer back then (at least in Panhandle were I grew up).. BTW, there were coconut palms in Jacksonville in the early 1900's.. what's this global warming stuff all about anyway!? The commercial citrus line is now mainly south of I-4 !!!!?????? Clark... The old man and the sea
ChrisK posted 07-24-2001 12:54 PM ET (US)     Profile for ChrisK  Send Email to ChrisK     
I fished in the Destin area in June and had a nice time on the grass flats behind San Destin with live shrimp. We caught 40 or 50 speckled trout per trip anchored in 4-7 ft. of water over the grass flats. Fished with a 20 lb. mono leader attached to 10 lb. test line on one end and a kahle hook on the other. You could also use no leader and go straight ot the hook. Also used a small split shot to get the bait down. It was fast and furious but all the trout were 12-14 here in Louisiana but not in FL...they need to be 15 inches. Did this twice in our 19' Outrage out of Elrod's fish camp in Destin and only kept 3 trout. It's about catching in my opinion, though, so I consider it a success. Especially since I'd never been there before.

I'll tell you what helped. They make a map that has a bunch of fishing spots marked on it. We caught trout at most of them, along with ladyfish, catfish, hardtails and other junk fish. The grass flats in Choctawhatchee Bay were most productive. Hope this helps...don't know if a similar situation exists in Perdido.

For offshore, there is a map with all the wrecks on it. The fishing pressure is huge over there and the snapper are finicky, use light or no leaders and light weight to fool them. Kings can be caught trolling plugs or skirted cigar minnows not too far off the beach. Look at the reports on the internet (do a search for Florida fishing reports or Destin fishing reports or Perdido fishing reports on Yahoo). I came up with about four or five places that had daily or weekly reports, just takes a little digging, but very helpful. Good Luck, be careful, and don't forget to tell us how you do!

JFM posted 07-24-2001 03:37 PM ET (US)     Profile for JFM  Send Email to JFM     
We are not the most well educated fisherman, my son and I, but our Fla. fishing guide book said that we could keep certain fish over a certain size if we just kept 1. However the snook wasn't included in that I don't think. The fish was really caught at Bob Sikes Cut on St. Georges Island. Maybe I should not have included that in The same vacinity as Perdido Key even though we fished that far west. Also it was warm enough for us to be in the water with our cast nets. We have fished that area for years and have seen snook caught in that part of the Panhandle before. Regards Jay
John W posted 07-24-2001 03:47 PM ET (US)     Profile for John W  Send Email to John W     
JFM, you didn't break any laws if the fish was no more than 34". You can keep 2 snook per day per angler, minimum size 26" & maximum size 34". Larger fish are all the breeding females which is the reason for the max size limit. That's an impressive catch anywhere, but especially up there. I had no idea there were snook anywhere in the panhandle, but obviously there are. Learn something new every day.
flwhaler posted 07-24-2001 06:30 PM ET (US)     Profile for flwhaler  Send Email to flwhaler     
I don't doubt snook could have made it up this far at all. Didn't mean to sound like that. There aren't any fences under water..we have had Orca whales and Manatees up this far. So anything is possible.


Landlocked posted 07-24-2001 10:17 PM ET (US)     Profile for Landlocked  Send Email to Landlocked     
Just to illustrate that nature has no boundaries, The fishes of Tennessee by Dr. David Etinier states that an adult bull shark was collected from the Mississippi River North of Tennessee in 1934 (not sure about the year) Dr. E. was one of my proffessors in college and is recognized as on of the leading experts in fish taxonomy. Don't have the book in front of me but I remember he states that he would expect them to eventually be collected from Tennessee waters as this species is highly tolerant of fresh water and routinely travels long distances up rivers in other parts of the world. Gives you inlanders something to think about .... doesn't it.

Also, I have personally collected sturgeon and a previously undescribed species of red-horse from the Oconee River, Ga where none had been collected before. Range maps give you something to go by, but - you never really know what you're going to find when you crank up the shock boat. The sturgeon had existed in that river for eons but no one knew it was there until a Dr Jenkins began looking at some old specimens... Don't remember the whole story but this fish was no minnow - we collected them up to 20lbs routinely once we started looking for them. I saw the sturgeon during a fall survey but could'nt get it in the boat. Went back and told my boss and he acted like I was an idiot. The next year while shocking the same section - he collected it.

Just something to think about


matt posted 07-24-2001 11:16 PM ET (US)     Profile for matt  Send Email to matt     
the weather right now is real unpredictable right now.snapper are plentiful.if you get a map old river just in the alabama side is good,i fish these regurarly as well as bon secure,oyster bay and mobile bay.freinds tell me pensacola bay has been real good since netting was banned.wish they would stop it here in alabama.i dont know where you are from but remember its hot and humid real humid here.this also is where jimmy buffet is from and sings about often.try cottons restaurant in orange bch for a good steak,and the flora-bama if your still young or young at heart.
have fun
Landlocked posted 07-25-2001 09:03 AM ET (US)     Profile for Landlocked  Send Email to Landlocked     

I'm in Tennessee and despite popular opininion - its hot here.. Heat index has been well over 100 last few days. Actual temps in high 90's. And right now I have water running down my windows from the humidity. I'm still young but feelin old, hence the need for a vacation.

I appreciate the spots. Tried to find an actual map around here with lat/long fish coordinates but no luck, guess I'll wait till I get there.

Trying to get my boat name put on before the trip so you guys down there will recognize me and steer me away from the beech ha ha.


Landlocked posted 07-25-2001 09:04 AM ET (US)     Profile for Landlocked  Send Email to Landlocked     
Oh yea, that fish we caught routinely was the Redhorse.... My fingers got ahead of my brain last night.


hauptjm posted 07-25-2001 09:27 AM ET (US)     Profile for hauptjm    
Just got word that I'll be in Destin, FL for a week in late August. The 18OR will follow my SUV down. The other couple we are staying with both love to fish. I wish my wife would have waited to tell me this; I won't be able to concentrate on anything. We do this trip every year, and the fishing and exploring is fantastic. Only worry: Red Tide. Some sort of algae bloom that can occur and either kill or displace everything in its path (it robs oxygen). I've been lucky, it's only happened to me once.
flwhaler posted 07-26-2001 08:22 AM ET (US)     Profile for flwhaler  Send Email to flwhaler     
No reports of red tide yet...IT only occurs every few years or so....Up until last year was the only consective years of the stuff. That stuff is bad news though.


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